Different Types Of Degrees In Nursing

Nursing is a broad discipline with many different career paths. From the bedside to research and policy, there are many opportunities for nurses who wish to deepen their knowledge or pursue a different kind of nursing practice. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the top degrees in nursing so that you can find what’s right for you!

Different Types Of Degrees In Nursing

1. Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is the most common degree for nurses. BSN programs are typically 4 years, and they’re a generalist degree. This means that you’ll get a broad overview of nursing rather than focusing on one specific area, such as pediatrics or hospice care.

You’ll also learn about areas such as pharmacology and advanced pathophysiology—this knowledge will be useful if you want to pursue further education down the line, like becoming an LPN or RN. A BSN may be required if you want to work in critical care environments like operating rooms or intensive care units; it’s also helpful if your goal is to become an administrator or educator at a hospital or other healthcare institution.

2. Master’s in Nursing (MSN)

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is the next step after a bachelor’s degree. It takes about two years to complete, and it’s a graduate-level degree—the highest level of education for a nurse. The MSN is considered a terminal degree, meaning that it can’t be used to continue with further studies toward another degree.

The MSN program builds on the knowledge gained during your undergraduate coursework by addressing more complex topics in nursing science, practice and leadership. You’ll learn how to apply this knowledge while working directly with patients in clinical settings such as hospitals or private practices.

In addition to advanced clinical training, an MSN program also includes coursework related to research methodology, health policy issues and bioethics/legal issues faced by nurses as professionals within their field; taking part in an internship where you’ll have hands-on experience working under supervision from experienced nurses who can offer feedback on how well you’re performing both professionally and academically; preparing for national exams like NCLEX or NRE which are required for licensure depending on state law; possibly participating in externships or other types of field work where students work outside of the classroom setting under professional guidance from experienced staff members such as doctors or administrators

3. BSN to MSN

In a typical BSN to MSN program, students will earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing and then go on to complete their master’s degree in one year. These programs are usually offered online, at the graduate level, and at the master’s level.

In order to be eligible for these programs you must have an undergraduate degree in nursing.

4. Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP)

  • The DNP is a professional doctorate and terminal degree, meaning it is the highest degree of nursing.
  • The DNP is a specialty degree, but not all specialties are included in this program.
  • The program requires at least 1 year of experience after you have obtained your master’s degree in nursing before applying to it.
  • After obtaining your first graduate degree and meeting all other requirements, you will spend 2 years working on the Doctorate of Nursing Practice.

5. Master’s Degree in Public Health (MPH)

Master of Public Health (MPH) is an advanced degree offered by many universities. The MPH program requires students to complete 60 credits and often includes a thesis or capstone project. This type of nursing degree prepares graduates for careers in public health administration, health education, epidemiology and other areas related to improving the overall health status within populations.

MPH programs usually entail classroom-based learning with some hands-on experience as well. Students learn about epidemiology (the study of disease), behavioral sciences and social sciences as they relate to public health issues; they also gain expertise in how these issues affect communities at large. Students may choose from a variety of concentrations within this track such as community health promotion or environmental health science.

The majority of master’s degrees require two years’ worth of study after earning a bachelor’s degree; however, some accelerated programs allow students to earn both degrees in just one year if all requirements are met.*

6. There are many degrees for students to work toward in nursing programs.

There are many degrees for students to work toward in nursing programs. Some of the most common degrees include the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). The BSN is considered to be the most common degree and is often seen as a stepping-stone to higher level education such as an MSN or DNP. The MSN is considered to be more advanced than a BSN because it requires students to complete more coursework, clinical hours and research opportunities. A PhD degree program focuses on research while earning a doctorate degree in nursing practice prepares individuals for leadership roles within healthcare organizations or academia.


With the different types of degrees in nursing, students have many options for completing their degree. Some programs offer advanced degrees to help prepare nurses for a career as an educator or researcher. Other programs offer shorter degrees that can be completed in less time than traditional programs. The most important thing is to make sure that you find the right program for your needs and goals so that you can graduate with what you want out of school!

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