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The Importance of Nursing Education

The Importance of Nursing Education

The changing landscapes of the healthcare delivery system and the increasing patient demand necessitate specialty skills in handling and managing patients. At the healthcare delivery system’s core, nurses must equip themselves with these necessary skills to deliver quality and efficient care. Additionally, various health services require special skills that cannot be obtained by basic level education, such as bachelor’s or associate degrees, thus warranting further education to acquire these specialty skills. This paper seeks to examine the importance of nursing education.

A nurse graduate with at least a bachelor’s degree in nursing can be employed in various healthcare provider sectors that require nursing expertise. These areas include travel nurses, emergency room nurses, flight nurses, and forensic nurses. Travel nursing involves shifting positions of work from one region to another. The nurse has to work over a set amount of time before shifting to their next station for another assignment. Emergency room nurses work in the emergency department while flight nurses form part of the emergency rescue crews that utilize light aircraft and helicopters. Flight nurses provide healthcare services in emergency missions, such as transferring patients from one facility to another and disaster rescue operations. Forensic nurses form part of investigations for crimes like physical and sexual assault, accidents, or any other crime involving either loss of human lives or injury (Dennison, 2016). All these nursing areas are potential fields that a nursing graduate can dive into.

Various nursing professional certifications and advanced degrees exist. Professional certifications that are of greater interest to me are the oncology certified nurse (OCN), certified dialysis nurse (CDN), and certified pediatric nurse (CPN). Oncology-certified nurse certifications are earned upon meeting a specified eligibility criterion that qualifies an individual for an examination to test her skills in that field. This criterion entails being a registered nurse with a minimum of 24 months of experience as a registered nurse and 2,000 hours of adult oncology nursing practice, and a minimum of 10 hours of continuous oncological education within three years before application. Eligible candidates are then subjected to a 165 multiple-choice question exam, and certification is awarded to those who pass the exam. Likewise, certified dialysis nurse certification is awarded upon meeting an eligibility criterion. This includes being a registered nurse, having worked for a minimum of 2000 hours in a hemodialysis unit providing care to renal patients over the past two years, and having a minimum of 15 continuing educational hours by the time of application. The eligible candidates are also subjected to an examination, and certifications are awarded to those who pass the examination.

Advanced degrees that are of interest to me are the Doctor of nursing practice and Advanced practice registered nurse. Doctor of nursing practice (DNP), the highest level of education attainable by a nurse, provides the necessary expertise in organizational leadership, nurse management, and health informatics. A minimum of six years of education is required to obtain a DNP. Likewise, an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) is a master’s degree holder registered nurse with a post-master certification in either clinical nurse specialist, certified registered nurse anesthetist, or certified nurse-midwife. A minimum of six years of education and clinical preparation is required to obtain an APRN status.

Increasing the level of education equips an individual with the specialty skills and expertise that are important in several ways. First, it improves the quality of care being delivered to the patients. The additional and advanced techniques acquired in higher-level education are utilized to improve inpatient care considerably. These skills are also essential in faster problem identification and solution finding, which in turn enhances the efficiency of care. Secondly, it enables better decision-making in healthcare. Skills and expertise acquired from higher learning enable better healthcare decision-making and clinical judgment that enhances safety and quality of care, thereby improving the clinical outcomes of the patient treatment process.

Additionally, higher learning enables the expansion of healthcare knowledge, further enhancing clinical decision-making and judgment. It also enables the innovation of clinical approaches that promote patient care efficiency and safety. The specialty skill attributable to higher learning, as described, underpins its significance and thus necessitates the need of every nurse to gain these specialty skills for the betterment of the patient’s treatment processes.

Continuing nursing education confers special benefits regarding competency, attitude, knowledge, and a better understanding of the standards for practice and code of ethics. Nursing competency is necessary for the enhancement of efficient care. Competency entails the ability to perform core nursing skills, effectiveness in duty performance, knowledge, and the ability to think critically and make good clinical decisions (Fukada, 2018). Competency can be instilled in nurses via clinical competency-based training methods targeted at providing patient-centered care.

Continuing nursing education also imparts knowledge and attitudinal shifts to the nurse. By equipping the nurse with current evidence-based knowledge and treatment modalities currently being used, continuing education not only enhances their competitiveness but also enables nurses to refine their practice and improve the quality of patient care. Additionally, continuing education can considerably improve the clinical reasoning of a nurse by improving their attitudinal approach to nursing diagnosis (Collins, 2017). The attitudinal shift also enhances the accuracy of the diagnosis and treatment process for the patients.

Continuing education also enables the understanding of the standards of practice and the code of ethics as specified by the American Nursing Association. Standards of practice guide the performance of nurses and define the provision of competent and quality care. These provisions on nursing diagnostics, interventions, consultancy, quality assurance, and protocols ensure competent and quality care delivery and form the basis for evaluating nursing performance. The ANA also defines the code of ethics that guides nursing practice. This code of ethics defines the ethical standard to which nursing professionals practice ascribes and the obligations they have in their practice. Continuing education imparts the nurse with this information to guide their practice in the rather complex healthcare delivery system

Continuing nursing education is particularly important to nurses. Its benefits of improving nurses’ competency, attitudes, and knowledge make it a necessity. Additionally, it enables nurses to understand the frameworks that guide their practice, such as the code of ethics and standards of practice. It is, therefore, important that it be made mandatory for all nurses.

Nursing education is critical due to the core position of nursing practice in healthcare service delivery. Its significance warrants the need to obtain specialty skills to improve quality in service delivery. These specialty skills, such as DNP and APRN, are obtainable through higher academic learning. The obtainable skills confer greater significance in clinical decision-making and quality improvement. Continuing education is also crucial to nursing practice as it equips nurses with attitudinal shifts, knowledge, and competency, improving their competitiveness and quality of care delivery.


Collins, A. (2017). Effect of Continuing Nursing Education on Nurses’ Attitude Toward and Accuracy of Nursing Diagnosis. International Journal Of Nursing Knowledge, n/a-n/a. DOI: 10.1111/j.2047-3095.2013.01237.x

Dennison, R. (2016). Future of Advanced Registered Nursing Practice, An Issue of Nursing Clinics. London: Elsevier Health Sciences.

Fukada, M. (2018). Nursing Competency: Definition, Structure, and Development. Yonago Acta Medica, 61(1), 001-007. DOI: 10.33160/yam.2018.03.001


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The Importance of Nursing Education

The IOM published report, “Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health,” makes recommendations for lifelong learning and achieving higher levels of education.

In 1,000-1,250 words, examine the importance of nursing education and discuss your overall educational goals.

Include the following:

The Importance of Nursing Education

The Importance of Nursing Education

  • Discuss your options in the job market based on your educational level.
  • Review the IOM Future of Nursing Recommendations for achieving higher levels of education. Describe what professional certification and advanced degrees (MSN, DNP, etc.) you want to pursue and explain your reasons for wanting to attain the education. Discuss your timeline for accomplishing these goals.
  • Discuss how increasing your level of education would affect how your competitiveness in the current job market and your role in the future of nursing.
  • Discuss the relationship of continuing nursing education to competency, attitudes, knowledge, and the ANA Scope and Standards for Practice and Code of Ethics.
  • Discuss whether continuing nursing education should be mandatory. Provide support for your response.

You are required to cite to a minimum of three sources to complete this assignment. Sources must be published within the last 5 years and appropriate for the assignment criteria and relevant to nursing practice.

Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.

This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.

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