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Old 09-28-2008, 11:10 PM
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Default Level of Education

At the moment nursing (RN) is conducted in University level. While the lower grade (EN, LPN, etc) is conducted at what we call TAFE (Tertuary And Further Education). There is a proposal at the moment to allow a TAFE to start teaching RN nurses. TAFE is where people generally go to learn a trade (Chief, plummer, mechanic, hairdresser, etc). It is felt that nurses need to be taught in an environment of scholarship and with our peers in Physio, medicine, social work. There are mixed feelings on this with many nurses not agreeing with it. It took many years to get the Nursing profession recognized by other health professionals, and with the downgrading of the course there is a fear that we will loose our recognition.

I was wondering what everyone's views are on the level of their education?
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Old 09-29-2008, 02:13 AM
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I have mixed feelings about higher education in nursing. American nurses are still arguing over "who is a nurse." I attended a 3 year diploma nursing program 30 PLUS years ago, and I received an excellent education. I took a few classes at our local community college, but I spent most of at the hospital. I worked next to seasoned nurses on the nursing units and I spent many hours in a hospital classroom being taught nursing theory by old time nurses that really knew their stuff. Today's academic nurses don't consider me a "real nurse" because I don't have a "degree," which of course is total BS. With that being said, I must add that nursing is not a "trade." It is a profession, and I don't know if I would like to see nursing education being shuffled off into the halls of a trade school. The whole thing sounds really sticky.



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Old 09-29-2008, 11:23 AM
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Much of nursing education in the US today is done in 'community colleges' which grant a two-year Associate degree. They cover all the core nursing material, and the grads sit for the RN exam (NCLEX). In terms of clinical skills and care, they're usually just as good (sometimes better) than the BSN grads. The BSN track adds a lot of material that is not directly related to enhancing patient care. The additional courses cover research topics, nursing theory topics, management topics, a brief component in community nursing. That's what puts the BS in BSN. I think that the BSN route would have been far more useful if the extra hours were put into more science, medicine, clinical experiences, maybe alternatives in patient care. Courses like Health Care Systems and Nursing Management could have (should have!) been left for the graduate students who are actually interested in those areas. I think the mover towards more Baccalaureate education in American nursing could be a good thing, but only if the curricula are rewritten to enhance and advance direct patient care. That, after all, is what undergraduate nurses are there for! If not, I see little or no real advantage to the four year degree from the patient's perspective.
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Old 09-29-2008, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Medic09 View Post
Much of nursing education in the US today is done in 'community colleges' which grant a two-year Associate degree. They cover all the core nursing material, and the grads sit for the RN exam (NCLEX). In terms of clinical skills and care, they're usually just as good (sometimes better) than the BSN grads. The BSN track adds a lot of material that is not directly related to enhancing patient care. The additional courses cover research topics, nursing theory topics, management topics, a brief component in community nursing. That's what puts the BS in BSN. I think that the BSN route would have been far more useful if the extra hours were put into more science, medicine, clinical experiences, maybe alternatives in patient care. Courses like Health Care Systems and Nursing Management could have (should have!) been left for the graduate students who are actually interested in those areas. I think the mover towards more Baccalaureate education in American nursing could be a good thing, but only if the curricula are rewritten to enhance and advance direct patient care. That, after all, is what undergraduate nurses are there for! If not, I see little or no real advantage to the four year degree from the patient's perspective.
I really like your ideas. Thanks for sharing.

MJ
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Old 10-02-2008, 02:07 AM
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I guess you can see that as a second-degree student, I was not favorably impressed by the BSN program. Actually, most of my second-degree colleagues voiced similar sentiments.
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Old 10-02-2008, 02:39 AM
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I seem to remember that it is common for the TAFE colleges in OZ to shift up to providing degrees like RMIT in Melbourne classed now as a uni but started as a technical insitute. Here in NZ its already a mix. My own school is a Polytechnic (a trade school) but it aso teaches radiography and nursing at degree level. funily enough our local university doesn't have a nursing or med programme. probably too small. In my opinion I don't feel that I suffered by not attending a Uni but I wish we had a four year degree. One thing that has improved is that we have insituted a formal intern year for new grads (I was hired into a new grad programme at one of the pilot hospitals who carried on with interns after the trial cos it was so benificial. I too feel that I would have liked a bit more science in my degree.
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Old 10-03-2008, 01:30 AM
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Thanks, JacquiBee. You have raised one of the main arguments against this plan. There are a lot of nursing programs around Melbourne where this is being suggested, it just takes time to train nurses.
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