Nowadays, people are always on the lookout for better-paying jobs with better benefits as well.
More often than not, such positions require a higher level of education.
This is especially true for nurses who wish to advance in their career.
Fortunately, opportunities like online BSN to MSN programs, for example, can help nurses achieve those goals.
As you may already know, a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree is an advanced credential that can open the door to a range of new opportunities and career paths.
It is one of the most respected degrees in the nursing profession and can be earned by nurses who have completed their baccalaureate or associate’s degree.
Of course in medicine, higher education comes with a bit more responsibilities but it’s well worth perusing in the end.
This is especially true today when such education is available online, allowing nurses to easily balance their career and studies.
With that in mind, here are some of the reasons why nurses should consider obtaining a masters of science in nursing degree.
Career advancement opportunities with an MSN degree
As mentioned before, an MSN degree is a great way to advance your career and specialize in one of the career paths that may suit you better.
Those career paths often include family nurse practitioner, pediatric nurse practitioner, nursing informatics specialist, clinical nurse researcher, and many more.
These career paths allow nurses to provide more advanced care to patients and have greater autonomy in their practice.
Moreover, higher education allows you to switch from patient care to research should you wish to do so.
Not only that but, you can also switch the type of care you provide.
For example, nurses can switch from physical to psychiatric care or even pursue a career in education for future nurses.
Therefore, there’s a plethora of options available to you once you obtain your MSN degree.
You can opt for pretty much anything from advanced patient care to leadership roles, so make sure you have a plan and a goal before you decide to go for higher education in nursing.
How to choose the right MSN program for you
Since there’s a myriad of MSN programs available, especially online, the key is to choose one that will suit your needs the most.
You can find out more by doing some research of your own.
That said, some of the vital aspects you should keep an eye on is the curriculum itself and how detailed it is in providing you with the knowledge you need.
Just because a program is 100% online it doesn’t mean it’s any less educational compared to traditional on-campus experience.
This brings us to the next aspect, which is clinical placement.
Every nurse needs field practice with real patients in real circumstances in order to qualify for the job.
Most online programs provide clinical placements and rotations but it doesn’t hurt to double-check if this feature is included in the program or not.
Of course, another thing to look out for is the costs of the program.
Some programs may cost more or you may get more from another program for the same price so make sure you do some extensive research on this matter so that you can find the deal that will financially suit you the most.
Strategies for balancing work and school when obtaining an MSN degree
Obtaining an MSN degree is a great way to open new doors when it comes to career advancements.
However, it can often be quite difficult to balance work, studies and personal matters at the same time.
That said, here are a few tips that should help you out in such matters:
- Set goals – Setting goals for yourself will help keep you motivated and focused on completing your degree in a timely manner.
- Take breaks – Taking regular breaks throughout the day will help keep you refreshed and energized so that you can focus better when studying or working.
- Utilize technology – Technology can be a great tool for helping manage your workload by allowing you to access course materials online, set reminders and even collaborate with classmates remotely if needed.
- Ask for help – Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family, friends or colleagues if needed. They may have valuable advice or resources that could make things easier for you during this time of transition into higher education.
Obtaining n MSN degree can provide nurses with increased job opportunities and higher salaries, as well as the chance to specialize in an area of nursing that they are passionate about.
That’s why it’s worth to at least consider this step as a possibility if not the next step in your career.