How Hard Is It And How Long Does It Take To Get a Master's Degree In Nursing?

Time and difficulty are two important considerations when contemplating getting a degree. This is especially true if you’re thinking about earning a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree; a graduate degree is undoubtedly more difficult than an undergraduate degree, and nursing isn’t an easy field.  Whether you want an MSN degree to earn more respect, get a higher salary, or get a better job, it’s important to know what to expect. Let’s explore this topic to discover how hard it is to get a master’s degree in nursing and how long it takes.

Length of master’s degree programs

So how long will it take you to earn a master’s degree? As you probably image, it depends on a few factors. There are a multitude of nursing programs that offer the MSN degree, and most require students to have a bachelor’s degree before entering the MSN program. If you already have a bachelor’s degree, you can expect to complete your MSN in two to three years.  Another factor to consider: If you’re a full-time student, you’ll get your degree faster than a part-time student. If you need to attend part-time for financial reasons or other commitments, expect to add another year or two.

Difficulty of a master’s degree in nursing program

So now you have an idea of the time commitment a MSN requires, but what about the difficulty? While the answer to that question depends on which school you attend, you should expect master degree coursework to be more difficult than any undergraduate coursework you have completed.  Many schools require MSN candidates to complete advanced science and anatomy courses. Nurses with an MSN often hold positions beyond LPN or RN, so business courses are often included as well. Some also require a capstone experience which is usually a practicum at a medical facility. And don’t forget leadership skills – many MSN programs focus on the topic, so if you’re uncomfortable with leading others, you may find those portions difficult.  In the end, how difficult you’ll find master’s classes will depend on how well your undergraduate degree has prepared you for advanced coursework, how much time you have to devote to the MSN program, and your familiarity with the classes you have to take. Keep in mind that if you’re already a nurse, you’ll likely be somewhat familiar with the concepts discussed, and that familiarity will be an asset.

In conclusion

If you’re willing to put in the necessary time and you’re prepared for rigorous coursework, an MSN could be a great choice for you. In addition to a higher salary, you’ll also be eligible for exciting career opportunities. Nursing is a growing field and having your MSN will make you an attractive candidate to many employers. If you’re still unsure, explore these nursing forums to get a better idea of what’s required: All Nurses and Ultimate Nursing.