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Comparison of Critical Thinking Skills Adn Bsn

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A Comparison of Critical Thinking Skills between Associate, Baccalaureate, and RN-to-BSN Nurses

A Comparison of Critical Thinking Skills between Associate, Baccalaureate, and RN-to-BSN Nurses There are many differences in the competencies between associate and baccalaureate level nurses. Associate level nursing programs tend to concentrate on the more technical aspects of nursing which allows students once they graduate to provide appropriate care to patients and families, especially during times of illness. They may practice on a more restricted level, making their nursing skills limited to more direct patient care in nursing homes and hospitals. Baccalaureate nursing programs improve on these skills by teaching more critical thinking to allow a more thorough approach to caring for their patients. RN-to-BSN programs allow ADN nurses that have grown confident in their hands-on skills and want to gain more critical thinking skills the ability to build on their education and "prepare...for a broader scope of practice" (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2014). The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) notes multiple research studies linking fewer medication errors, lower mortality rates and more positive patient outcomes to nursing education received at the baccalaureate level (2014). BSN programs also help teach the leadership needed for nursing supervision and prepare their nurses for graduate studies. Critical thinking competency is key to the future of the nursing profession as the nurse's role is becoming increasingly complex. Due to the changing nature of patient populations to include more chronically ill and older patients, nurses have to be able to think critically about multiple aspects of a patient's well being in order to provide better, more thorough patient care. A review of the literature on this subject...

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