Learning From Past Mistakes: The Importance Of Experience Based Education

1062 words - 5 pages

Learning from Past Mistakes: The Importance of Experience-Based Education
The standard of education required for entry level practice into nursing has been a topic of debate for decades. There is no dispute among both the general public and those in the healthcare field that improving education could only lead to positive results. Controversy arises when dealing with varying ideas of implementation and standards. It is imperative to realize the importance of implementing experienced based education and not just academic education alone. In 1965, the American Nurses Associations (ANA) proposed a baccalaureate degree be required for entry into practice (Taylor, 2008). By taking a look at the ...view middle of the document...

. The competency of nurses with Bachelor and Associate Degrees in nursing is not so profound that it should be a defining change in the healthcare industry. In fact, there have been many attempts to evaluate both technical and professional competency differences between nurses with a BSN or ADN with no conclusive findings to merit a general consensus that competency is significantly greater in nurses with a BSN (Hess, 1996). Requiring a BSN would lead to a nursing shortage and prevent students that would have gotten their Associates Degree in Nursing (ADN) from being excellent nurses. Those that do invest more time and money by getting their BSN are rewarded by being the preferred candidate and have more opportunities to further their education and scope of practice.
Another key issue with the ANA’s proposal was that it was rushed when it did not need to be. Proponents were so fixed on implementing change, they neglected critical components necessary for achieving it. The proposal was controlled and molded by members of Boards of Nursing that already attained a level of higher education. They created a proposal that would impact the nursing world without seeking insight from the people with whom the changes would affect most significantly. The proposal seemed to be a quick fix to increase educational standards for nurses without any consideration of the nurses.
North Dakota was the first and only state to implement the proposal in 1987. A bill was written to appeal the proposal every single year starting in 1987 all the way to 2001 (Smith, 2011). The catalyst that got the proposal rescinded in 2003 was the opposition from the general public. It took over 10 years for the disruption and separation of nursing to have a visible effect noticeable enough to the general public that they would participate in protesting the proposal to legislature. Failure to properly explain the implications of the proposal to nursing staff caused confusion, fear, and contempt in the nursing community. Nurses who only had their ADN did not know if they would be fired or have to go to school because they were not informed of the grandfathering clause.
What the ANA failed to acknowledge was the immense consequences that would not necessarily even guarantee a significant...

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