Becoming a registered nurse (RN) is possible with a bachelor’s degree in nursing but, despite the popularity of the bachelor’s degree, there are many benefits of an MSN degree. Earning a Master’s of Science in Nursing degree will not only put RNs in a position to earn more money but will also enhance their career opportunities and allow them more areas in which they might focus. Here are just a few of the many benefits of a Master’s of Science in Nursing.

Better Employment Hours

Nursing can be a very rewarding career, but it can also be a career that requires round-the-clock work. RNs are often required to work long days and long weeks. Some work 12-hour shifts while others work in the evenings and weekends. Some hospitals or medical facilities have their nurses working on an on-call basis. Nurses who earn a master’s degree in nursing often have the potential to obtain managerial and leadership positions, which generally adhere to 40-hour work weeks. This allows them to spend more time on other things, including fun activities and time with the family.

Potential to Earn Higher Wages

It really is true that the higher the degree an individual has, the more money he or she has the potential to earn. Earning an MSN also puts the person in a position where they can expect more money because they are standing behind a graduate degree so to speak. One of the benefits of a Master’s of Science in Nursing is wages. According to a 2013 report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses who earned a master’s degree in nursing had a wage increase of about 19% over what they earned with a bachelor’s degree in nursing.

Degree Available Online

Another of the benefits of a Master’s of Science in Nursing is the option of earning the degree online. Many MSN degree programs are available through distance learning. Earning a nursing degree by way of a bachelor’s degree can consist of a lot of hard work and dedication. The bachelor’s degree takes four years to earn with nursing students required to spend a lot of time on campus or completing clinical internships. When the RN pursues an MSN online, he or she often has the flexibility to earn the degree while continuing to work.

Related Resource: Top 50 Affordable RN to MSN Online Programs

More Career Options

The MSN degree offers many different career opportunities. In addition to being able to pursue a leadership position, graduates of the MSN degree can also specialize in a specific area of nursing. Some may decide to become nurse educators where they can mentor other nurses and aspiring nursing. Nurse Journal.org states that a nurse with an MSN may choose to study various areas of specialization, all which offer higher wages, more responsibility and better hours, including:

  • Nurse-midwife
  • Nurse practitioner
  • Neonatal nurse practitioner
  • Acute care nurse practitioner
  • Nurse anesthetist
  • Nurse researcher
  • Trauma nurse practitioner

Working as an RN can be a very challenging and rewarding career because the RN helps sick and injured people feel better. Some RNs want to advance their careers and get as high up on the healthcare ladder as possible. Being able to accomplish these careers is probably one of the most obvious benefits of a Master’s of Science in Nursing.