Essay on Nursing Education Goals

Published: 2021/11/17
Number of words: 1234

I am a nurse practitioner with an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), working towards Bachelors in Nursing (BSN). It is a four-year program that prepares an individual for careers as a Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), and that is the minimum academic requirement. Pursuing an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) offers a practising nurse a wide range of work environments and career possibilities. An ADN nurse can work directly with diversified patients, including women, children, men, elderly individuals, and adolescents (Feeg & Mancino, 2016).

The nursing program prepares nurses to offer high-quality health care, which therefore assures job security. ADN nurses can work in many diverse communities and healthcare settings. The roles of nurses with an ADN include patient assessment, medical diagnosis, and treatment, operating medical equipment, offering health education, caring for patients in admission wards, and collaborating with other professionals in healthcare delivery. Their places of work include nursing care facilities, professional schools, outpatient care centres and colleges, home healthcare services, residential care facilities, and hospitals (Ghaffari, 2017).

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The IOM Recommendation and Professional Educational Goals

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recognizes that nurses should play a role in adapting to the new challenges in the healthcare sector which is increasingly dynamic. IOM recommends that for nurses to meet the demands of the dynamic healthcare systems, there is a need for them to transform their nursing practice by continually pursuing higher education, and achieving higher levels of training and education (Altman et al., 2016). In considering that, as an ADN nurse, I plan to achieve additional professional certification and later pursue an advanced degree.

I plan to pursue professional certification in at least four key areas of my nursing practice, which will make me a skilled, all-around competent healthcare practitioner. The skills will help me lower the risks of medical errors, and promote quality care that enhances patient satisfaction. I will undertake AIDS Certified Registered Nurse (ACRN) professional certification which requires a registered nurse to actively take part in HIV/AIDS nursing for a period of a minimum of two years. The nurse is then expected to take a professional exam that tests his/her expertise in epidemiology and prevention, ethical and legal issues, psychosocial, and pathophysiology issues in HIV/AIDS. This professional knowledge will promote my nursing skills to help in the provision of care for HIV positive members of the community that has been on the rise in past years.

I am planning to pursue a Certified Pediatric Nurse (CPN) which requires a registered nurse to complete 1,800 hours of clinical pediatric care for two consecutive years after which he/she is eligible to undertake the examination. The CPN certification will increase my competitiveness in the healthcare job market by validating my professional skills in pediatric nursing. I plan to undertake an Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN) which requires a nurse to take part in oncology care practice for at least 2,000 hours in two consecutive years. The exams in the OCN course test for knowledge in treatment modalities, continuum, symptom management, oncology nursing practice, and palliative care. The OCN knowledge will increase my job competitiveness during this time when there is a rising number of oncology care centres in society necessitated by the rapid rates of cancer infection. Additionally, I plan to pursue certification as a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP-BC). This course will validate my skills in diagnosing illnesses, evaluating their needs, and administering care. Before undertaking the FNP-BC exam, the nurse is supposed to complete 500 faculty-supervised practice hours.

In my career life, I plan to achieve a more advanced degree in nursing as a Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) with a speciality in Endocrinology. It takes four years to complete the program: therefore, I will have accomplished my goal in this period. The reason for pursuing a DNP course is to obtain knowledge and skills essential for leadership roles in nursing: scientific research, innovation of new economical treatment procedures, influencing others, policy implementation, and influence healthcare outcomes (Burson et al., 2016). Furthermore, the DNP qualification will expand my career choices to include Nurse Manager among others.

Impact of Increased Education Level on Job Competitiveness

Increasing my educational level will increase my competitive ability in the job market, and enhance my job security. The professional certification will be important to validate all the skills I learned during my Associate Degree in Nursing, and combination with my DNP skills it will increase my professional competence and competitiveness. The current nursing labour market requires nurses to significantly expand their competencies in the provision of safe and quality healthcare for them to be competitive. The knowledge requirement for nurses has broadened to include competencies in leadership skills, public health, health policy, geriatrics, evidence-based practice, system improvement, and research (Dechezleprêtre & Sato, 2017). My education advancement will therefore equip me with requisite skills.

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Impact of Continued Education on Nurses and their Professional Practice

The healthcare sector has continued to evolve due to advancing health technology, changes in the cultural composition of patients, and the presentation of multiple conditions in an individual client. The nurses, therefore, needs to continually equip themselves with new and innovative clinical knowledge to handle the challenging cases in healthcare. A nurse may choose to advance their knowledge in a specific area such as pediatric nursing, and continuing education helps them become experts in handling specific pediatric cases (Dechezleprêtre & Sato, 2017). The clinical knowledge and reasoning of a nurse are improved through continued learning, and this improves their view on attitudes towards the correctness of the nursing diagnosis. Through continued education, the standard of medical practice is improved since the nurse is equipped with knowledge diversity. Continued nurse education furthermore adds qualifications and certifications that consequently influence the ANA Scope of practice. As nurse’s certification level increases, ANA Scope expands. Nurse practitioners with diversified professional certification, equally have a wider scope of practice. Importantly, continued nurse education improves their understanding and respect for the Code of Ethics which guides their practice.

Continuing nursing education should be made mandatory as it assures more competence in nursing. It helps prevent errors and promote quality care in today’s healthcare sector which is characterized by changing patient needs, and rapid technological advancements. Continued education equips nurses with essential knowledge that improves their professional growth and competitiveness in the job market. Furthermore, through continued education, the professional nurses achieve networking which helps grow and develop their expertise in different diversity fields.


Altman, S. H., Butler, A. S., Shern, L., & National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. (2016). Promoting Diversity. In Assessing Progress on the Institute of Medicine Report The Future of Nursing. National Academies Press (US).

Burson, R., Moran, K. J., & Conrad, D. (2016). Why Hire a Doctor of Nursing Practice–Prepared Nurse? The Value Added Impact of the Practice Doctorate. Journal of Doctoral Nursing Practice9(1), 152-157.

Dechezleprêtre, A., & Sato, M. (2017). The impacts of environmental regulations on competitiveness. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy11(2), 183-206.

Feeg, V., & Mancino, D. J. (2016). Trends upward and trends downward reflecting a changing job market for new nursing graduates. Dean’s Notes37(4-5), 1-5.

Ghaffari, M. (2017). Preparing Nurses for Community Health Care: A Comparative Study of the ADN and BSN Programs. International Journal5(2), 32-45.

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