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Career Options and Salary Info for a BSN Degree

Bachelor's degree programs in nursing typically cover clinical care, communication and leadership techniques. Find out about the requirements of these programs, and learn about career options, job growth and salary info for nursing graduates.

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Essential Information

Individuals with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) may pursue diverse allied health careers. In addition to general education coursework, BSN programs offer students experience in clinical settings and advanced training in communication, both of which encourage leadership skills and enable graduates to obtain positions as specialized staff nurses, healthcare administrators, consultants and researchers.

Careers Clinical Hospital Staff Nurses Non-Clinical Hospital Staff Nurses Non-Hospital Nurses
Required Education BSN BSN BSN
Licensure Nursing license required Nursing license required Nursing license required
Salary (2014)$60,137 (emergency room nurse)*$67,322 (nursing case manager)* $59,716 (hospice nurse)*
Projected Job Growth 19% for all registered nurses** 19% for all registered nurses** 19% for all registered nurses**

Source: *PayScale.com, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Career Options

Clinical Hospital Staff Nurse

Staff nurses typically work in hospitals, clinics and physician offices. Many nurses with a BSN begin their careers in hospital specialty units such as critical care, cardiac care, intensive care, oncology or maternity wards. Job duties include assisting physicians with procedures and examinations, evaluating patients, dispensing medication, implementing treatment plans and documenting care in patient charts. Staff nurses may also supervise other staff, including vocational nurses, medical assistants and unit clerks.

Non-Clinical Hospital Staff Nurse

Hospitals may employ nurses with a BSN for administrative and non-clinical roles. Staff nurses with a BSN and several years of experience may be promoted to mid-level management positions such as department managers and head nurses. They may also have opportunities to pursue administrative and upper-management roles, including nursing chief, health services administrator and clinical staff recruiter.

Non-Hospital Nurse

Several career options exist outside of hospital care for nurses with BSN designations, including administrative positions in nursing homes, hospice care settings, insurance companies and government organizations. Pharmaceutical companies and educational organizations often employ BSN nurses in medical research, training and advisory positions.

BSN Degree Holder Salary Information

Base salary ranges for nurses with a BSN vary greatly and are dependent on several factors, including the industry, company size, geographic location and area of specialization. Employers in certain settings find it difficult to recruit and retain qualified nurses, making the salaries in those areas even more competitive.

According to the BLS, the median yearly salary for registered nurses was $66,220 in 2013 (www.bls.gov). PayScale.com reported in November 2014 that the median salary for registered nurses with a BSN was $57,687 per year.

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Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics