Discover nursing occupations and degree kinds.

Nurses may have more work choices when they get more degrees. Current and aspiring healthcare workers benefit from learning the many types of nursing degrees and how they might prepare them for success.

Nursing Demand: Numbers

Nursing shortages are unprecedented. Nursing students can mitigate this situation. They’ll shape healthcare’s future.

Nurse Shortage

Nurse shortages have long-term effects. By 2030, 13 million nurses may be needed. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts strong job growth between now and 2030. (BLS). The BLS expects 60,700 LPN/LVN vacancies each year, 194,500 RN opportunities, and 29,400 APRN openings (APRNs).

The nurse shortage has several causes. Aging populations increase care needs. 21.4% of Americans were 65 or older in 2020, making it important. The dearth of primary care professionals, increased nurse retirements, and healthcare reforms that increase access to care also contribute. 34% of nurses will quit by 2022 due to burnout. In rural regions, the epidemic exacerbated this situation.

New registered nurses can alleviate rural and urban nursing shortages. Nurse practitioners can also close the US primary care gap.

Graduate Degree of Nursing Types

Nursing degrees are a logical professional step. Each degree gives nurses the skills and knowledge to excel in healthcare and improve patient outcomes.

CNA Certification

CNAs need a CNA credential. Some states require the certificate to practice. This certificate needs a high school graduation or GED and 75 or more training hours, depending on the state.

LPN Certificate/Diploma

LPNs receive a certificate or diploma. The position needs a state license. Training lasts a year. High schools, community colleges, vocational institutions, and hospitals can give this credential.

Professional Degree Of AD

Health exams, immunizations, IVs, wound dressing, and patient planning can be learned with an associate degree. Two years of education leads to state-specific RN licensing. An associate degree can lead to a BSN (BSN).


Healthcare facilities and professional organizations favor a Bachelor of Science in Nursing for registered nurses. BSN graduates can work in community and public health, acute and critical care, long-term care, and outpatient settings.

Two BSN programs exist. Unlicensed undergraduates and RNs with associate professional degrees can earn a BSN.


MSN degrees educate nurses for advanced nursing practice and leadership.

The entry-level MSN program prepares non-nurses to become registered nurses. BSN-educated nurses can specialize in nurse educator, nursing informatics, executive nurse leader, or advanced practice registered nurse MSN programs.


The ideal entry level for all APRN clinical jobs is a DNP (clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner, nurse anesthetist, and nurse midwife). DNPs become systems change agents that identify and fix clinical practice issues to enhance healthcare quality and patient outcomes. DNPs are the highest nursing degrees. DNP programs may equip graduates for organizational and executive leadership, health policy, or nursing informatics employment in addition to APRN concentrations. RNs with a BSN can obtain a BSN-DNP, whereas those with an MSN can receive a post-DNP. Master’s

PG Certificate

Post-graduate certificates require an MSN or DNP and APRN certification. APRNs can work in new patient demographics and settings with a post-graduate credential. These can include certifications like family nurse practitioner (FNP), pediatric nurse practitioner-primary care (PNP-PC), PNP-AC, psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP), adult-gerontology primary care nurse practitioner (AGPCNP), and AGACNP, as well as many more APRN professions.

Online Grad Program Of Nursing PhD

Nursing PhDs prepare nurses for research to promote nursing science. PhD programs cover research methodologies, statistics, and leadership. BSN, MSN, and DNP nurses can obtain it. PhD-prepared nurses work as nurse researchers at hospitals, insurance firms, and universities.

Degrees, Careers

Each form of nursing degree opens up more advanced nursing positions. As nurses advance, their focus remains great patient care and results.

CNAs help nurses with basic care. They track patient health. They help with feeding, bathing, clothing, grooming, toileting, and mobility. The BLS sets the role’s 2021 median annual pay at $30,290.


LPNs/LVNs oversee CNAs. They monitor vital signs, give prescriptions, and follow RN or healthcare provider plans. The BLS reported a 2021 median wage of $48,070. RNs diagnose and record symptoms. They help with diagnostic tests and analysis, drug administration, and patient care regimens. The BLS reported a 2021 median income of $77,600 for registered nurses.


Nurse educators teach student and working nurses in various contexts. Nurse educators teach nursing curriculums, healthcare disciplines, and clinical lab work. They may also educate healthcare providers in units or institutions. Pay scale assessed the profession’s 2022 median yearly pay at $79,000.

Nurse Informaticist

Nursing informaticists build and manage electronic documentation and recordkeeping systems. They monitor system design, security, and confidentiality policies. Pay scale assessed the role’s 2022 median annual income at $85,000.

Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) APRNs do physical examinations, order diagnostic tests, diagnose various health concerns, design healthcare programs to improve patient wellbeing, and assess patient situations to guarantee treatment efficacy. The 2021 median annual wage is $123,780, according to the BLS.

Nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists, and nurse midwives are APRNs. APRNs often specialize in a patient demographic or practice setting. AGPCNPs provide adult and geriatric primary care. Primary care PNPs treat infants through young adults. PMHNPs assist patients of all ages with mental or behavioral health issues in various settings.

Executive Nurse

CNOs, healthcare executives, and academic deans are nurse executives. A CNO manages a nursing department’s operations and administration. They optimize nursing workflows and manage nursing resources. They also enforce federal, state, and local rules. In 2022, Pay scale predicts a median pay of $135,000.

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