The best nursing degree programs are those with rich histories of influence, proven through the work produced by the program’s faculty and alumni. Beyond demonstrating scholarly impact in the field, the best nursing degree programs maximize your opportunities to interact with outstanding nursing faculty.
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A bachelor’s degree in nursing is an excellent starting point for a career providing care in an emergency room, mental health facility, or home healthcare setting. In fact, an undergraduate degree in nursing could qualify you to work in an extremely wide range of healthcare contexts. As a nursing major, you’ll study the basic principles of care as well as medical ethics, anatomy, pathology, and more. You can also choose from a wide range of specializations in areas like rehabilitation, radiology, and anesthetics. The best schools for nursing are those which are regionally accredited, which offer a full array of nursing concentrations, and which give you the chance to work with the best and most influential professors and classmates.
Degree popularity: Nursing bachelor’s degrees are the 3rd most popular undergraduate degrees across all student demographics, ranking slightly higher for women at 2nd compared to 9th for men. Nursing is one of the few degrees that ranks among the top 10 most desired degrees for all demographics, and consistently in the top 3 for women, according to the number of degree earners reported by the National Center for Educational Statistics
Frequently Asked Questions About Nursing Bachelor’s Degrees
This four-year degree will qualify you to work as a Registered Nurse, once you’ve successfully completed your National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), as well as any state-specific requirements. Though you can become an RN with an associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree can elevate your candidacy for nursing leadership roles. Some healthcare settings may also offer support to nurses with associate’s degrees to enroll into RN-to-BSN degree programs.
As a registered nurse, you’ll get the chance to play a critical role in shaping and improving the treatment strategies and philosophies of care in use today. This means that leaders, researchers, and innovators in the field have a direct impact on our everyday experiences in the healthcare system. Today, top influencers in nursing are breaking new ground in Nurse Practitioner Programs, Primary Nursing, Oncology Nursing, and more.
Nursing is a popular major because there is an extremely high demand for qualified and capable registered nurses. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of new positions in the nursing field is expected to grow at a rate of 7% by 2029, which is significantly faster than the average rate of growth for jobs across all fields. In addition to likely adding more than 220,000 jobs during that time, the nursing sector offers higher than average pay as well. The BLS reports that nurses earned a median salary of $73,300 in 2019.
Once you’ve declared your major in nursing, you will likely be required to complete a set of core courses in a number of healthcare-related subject areas. While your concentration will give you a chance to choose from a wide range of highly-specialized nursing electives, there are several common courses that most nursing majors will be required to take, including:
Majoring in nursing can lead you into a wide variety of healthcare settings, and into any number of areas in clinical treatment, healthcare administration, or research. You have numerous options, and your degree program can help you hone in on the path that feels most suited to your skills and interests. As you consider career prospects, be sure that you know the degree requirements specific to your desired role. With the proper education and credentials, your nursing major can lead to a wide range of career opportunities, including these top jobs: