How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse?

Providing medical assistance to patients and assisting doctors puts nurses at the forefront of ensuring the healthcare industry runs smoothly. 

You need a strong education and significant training to find work in this highly sought-after sector. 

You can decide whether you want to start a career as a nurse by knowing how long it takes to get started in the nursing field.

In this article, we provide a response to the question, “How long does it take to become a nurse?” by outlining the duties of a nurse, highlighting the average salary of nurses, outlining the steps you can take to become a nurse, providing the major career categories of nursing, examining the various nurse paths, and outlining important skills for nurses.

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What is a Nurse School like?

When you’re happy with the response to the query “How long does it take to become a nurse?” and you’re ready to begin a nursing career, you can do the following actions:

1. Make a career plan. 

It’s crucial to decide what kind of nurse you want to be and the organization where you want to work because there are several nursing vocations. 

Find out which one best suits your professional objectives and then choose between becoming a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse. 

In general, nurses can find employment in any hospital, outpatient clinic, nursing home, or even research center, regardless of the nursing track they choose to take.

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2. Choose a course of study 

The next stage after creating a workable plan for your nursing career is to think about the educational needs and training necessary to support your professional objectives. 

You have the option of earning a diploma, an associate degree, or a bachelor’s degree in nursing. 

The length of time it may take you to become a nurse will depend on the education program you choose. 

If you currently work in another industry but wish to transition to a nursing job, you can enroll for an accelerated nursing school to receive the certification quickly.

3. Take and pass the license test 

Your employer anticipates that you will pass the NCLEX before beginning your nursing career in a hospital after completing your degree program. 

When you wish to take the licensing exam, there are certain standards for licenses in each province that you must meet and adhere to. 

After passing the license test, you can apply for positions at hospitals and other healthcare facilities in your province.

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4. Obtain speciality credentials 

You may choose to specialize in a particular area of nursing after completing your education and training as a nurse and beginning work as a general nurse. 

You can boost both your employability and income as a nurse by specializing. 

If you want to study more about the nursing profession, you can also choose to pursue postgraduate studies. 

Also, you may be eligible for managerial positions in a healthcare organization with the help of these certifications. 

You can think about specializing in one of the following nursing areas:

  • The nurse practitioner in mental health 
  • Licensed as a nurse and a midwife 
  • Nurse in a neonatal critical care unit 
  • Nurse telemetry 
  • Nursing neuroscience 
  • Nursing informatics 
  • Imaging nurse 
  • The cardiovascular nurse 
  • Child nursing 
  • Nurse at the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) 
  • Kidney nurse 
  • An operating room nurse

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Is Attending a Nurse School Worth It?

The field of nursing is one that is satisfying and gratifying

It goes without saying that nurses are trusted, valued, and respected in the majority of nations. Rightfully so. 

The efficient operation of healthcare systems depends on nurses. 

They accompany patients who are dealing with physical and mental suffering, assist with medication administration, and can offer solace to worried family and loved ones. 

Being a nurse instills a deep sense of fulfillment because you receive immediate feedback on how your profession affects the wellness of so many people. 

This enables you to develop deep relationships with others and perhaps get insight from their problems and life experiences.

People naturally want to be comforted and encouraged, as anyone who has ever witnessed someone cry or become extremely terrified would attest. 

As a nurse, you can calm patients down and assist them in letting go of any concerns or anxieties they may have by explaining the processes and functions of medications. 

However, adults too require assistance because no one is made of stone, so this is especially true of children.

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Nurses benefit from stable employment

There is a big demand for nurses. 

Even so many students pick this academic and career path, there are still numerous countries where nursing positions go unfilled. 

Only a few nations deal with this issue, including the UK. 

So it should come as no surprise that working as a nurse offers security, stability, and a steady paycheck. 

Even under challenging circumstances like economic crashes, nurses won’t have to worry about losing their jobs, despite the fact that many of them (correctly) complain that the pay doesn’t make up for all the stress, night shifts, and overwork. 

According to the US job outlook, for instance, the number of nursing-related jobs would rise by 12% between 2018 and 2028. 

Around 73,300 USD are earned annually as the average salary.

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The ability to work wherever

The best thing about obtaining a nursing degree is being able to use your medical knowledge and expertise abroad as long as you speak the language of the country you are working in. 

Despite the fact that some states are more developed than others and that medical equipment and methods may vary, nurses nonetheless play an important role in healthcare. 

Naturally, in order to work as a nurse overseas, your nursing degree and experience must be recognized. 

Some nations may require you to complete additional exams to demonstrate your proficiency. 

The choice of where to work is another freedom enjoyed by nurses:

  • public hospitals
  • private clinics
  • nursing homes
  • military bases
  • schools

Private clinics could offer a better salary, whilst other places of employment might provide a flexible work schedule. 

Finding a work environment that suits you professionally is key.

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What Schooling Do You Need to Be a Nurse?

1. Finish the prerequisites for a BSN or ADN

Liberal arts, math, and scientific prerequisites must be satisfied regardless of whether nursing students pursue an ADN or BSN degree. 

Anatomy, physiology, biology, and psychology basics are frequently required for admission to nursing programs. 

An entry-level “C” grade in these courses is frequently needed for nursing programs.

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2. Earn a BSN or an ADN Degree

A four-year BSN degree offers comprehensive instruction and training in clinical nursing, interpersonal communication, and leadership. 

The quickest way to become a registered nurse is to earn a two-year ADN degree, which includes nursing essentials. 

Those with a bachelor’s degree in a discipline other than nursing can complete an accelerated BSN program in as little as one year.

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3. The NCLEX Exam must be passed

Six weeks prior to graduation, students may submit an application for licensure and then sign up for the NCLEX-RN. 

Participants must finish at least 75 questions on this digital exam. 

To complete the exam, they have up to six hours. 

4. Get a Job

Make a proactive effort to find a job, regardless of your educational path. 

Before graduating, you should do this by reaching out to your campus network and accumulating career resources. 

Graduating nurses must stand out during clinical rotations with prospective healthcare employers despite the nursing field’s continued growth. 

5. Receive Board Licensure 

In order to advance professionally and earn more money, registered nurses need to become board certified. 

A minimum of two years of clinical experience in a speciality area is often required for RNs to qualify, as well as passing an exam.

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How Long Does It Take To Become a Licensed Nurse in 2023?

The type of schooling you receive and your nursing certification will determine how long it takes to become a nurse. 

Also, the region or province in which you want to work is another factor in becoming a nurse. 

The answer to the question “how long does it take to become a nurse?” It is four years if you’re pursuing a bachelor’s degree, but between two and three years if you’re pursuing an associate or diploma degree. 

Before beginning their careers, all nursing graduates and overseas nurses must pass an obligatory registration exam. 

The test is called the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). Obtaining the following degrees is the main route to becoming a nurse:

An undergraduate nursing degree 

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree can be earned after four years of study. 

The curriculum includes all the necessary theories and clinical guidance for medical and surgical nursing because the degree is a bachelor’s. 

With this degree, you can specialize in certain health issues and have a solid grasp of general nursing science courses. 

Medical professionals may insist that you take and pass the provincial nursing licensing exam after receiving this degree before you can begin working as a nurse.

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Nurse practitioner associate degree 

It takes less time to complete an associate’s degree in nursing. 

Depending on your education provider’s pace and caliber, you can finish the degree in two or three years. 

In a community college or nursing school, the curriculum frequently involves lectures and hands-on training. 

Courses in nursing, microbiology, psychology, and social science may be taken if you wish to acquire an associate’s degree in nursing. 

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Nursing program with a diploma 

A nursing diploma program lasts two to three years, as opposed to the degree choices. 

Similar to bachelor’s and associate degrees, this program is less popular. 

Large hospitals, particularly those connected to universities or colleges, are the best places to obtain this diploma if you want it.

Accelerated programs 

If you already hold a degree in another subject but are thinking about moving to nursing, you can enroll in the accelerated degree program. 

Compared to other possibilities, this degree program will enable you to obtain your nursing license more quickly. 

These accelerated programs are provided by many local nursing schools and universities, where you can pay less and earn your nursing degree more quickly.

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How Much Does It Cost to Become a Licensed Nurse in 2023?

Students can anticipate total tuition fees of at least $40,000 for a conventional four-year bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program. 

The cost of tuition may exceed $100,000. 

It may even be as high as $80,000. 

Colleges and institutions charge per credit for BSN degrees, which normally require 120 credits.

Salary and Job Outlook for Nurses after Study

The nursing category to which you belong determines your pay as a nurse. 

You can expect to make an hourly wage of $31.40 as a licensed practical nurse in the United States. 

However, the national average hourly wage for registered nurses employed in medical facilities is $38.53.

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In conclusion, as the population ages, the demand for nurses is expected to increase in the coming years. 

Nursing is a rewarding profession that also has excellent job prospects. 

However, nursing also needs a degree and a license, like many other professions. 

It is also critical to comprehend the degrees and time commitment required for various nursing qualifications before entering the field of nursing.


Frequently Asked Questions 

When can someone become a Nurse the quickest? 

The Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) route is the quickest method to become a nurse if you’re eager to get started. In as little as a year, you may finish a Practical Nursing degree and be well on your way to beginning a nursing career, even though you wouldn’t really be an RN.

What does being a Nurse entail? 

The procedures to become a registered nurse are very simple after you’ve made the decision to pursue a career in nursing. You must first obtain the necessary degree. The NCLEX Exam must then be passed. Finally, you need to apply for a license in the state where you want to practice.

How challenging is Nursing school? 

Nursing schools have a rigorous credit requirement, and many nursing students stack difficult courses during the same term to hasten their degree completion. The result could be that several important exams are scheduled for the same day or week. But if you take the time to learn and get ready, everything should work out.

Without a degree, is it possible to become a nurse? 

Although nursing is a practical, hands-on profession, it also necessitates specialized technical skills and clinical analysis abilities that could potentially save people’s lives. In light of this, you need a nursing degree to work as a nurse.

What characterizes an excellent Nurse? 

Empathy with each patient and a genuine attempt to put themselves in their patients’ position are qualities of a good nurse. 
Instead of rigorously adhering to standard procedures, nurses who exhibit empathy are more likely to see their patients as “people” and concentrate on a person-centered care approach.


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