Whether you have just completed your undergraduate degree in nursing and healthcare, you are just beginning your bachelor’s, or else you are considering taking your career in an entirely new direction, if you work, or want to work, in the field of nursing, then this article is for you.
Nursing requires a certain set of strengths and skill sets, not to mention an incredibly empathic, compassionate, and caring personality, to handle the high volumes of stress and huge workload, as well as the nature of dealing with other people’s suffering, respectively.
However, as with many other elements of modern life, the better equipped you are to deal with a problem, issue, or situation the moment it arises, the more likely you will be able to handle it, and moreover, the more successful the outcome is likely to be. One of the best defenses and preparation tactics for any healthcare professional, but, in particular, a registered nurse, is as much knowledge as one’s hectic schedule and mental capacity for retaining information allows.
With that being said, continue reading to learn of the top ten reasons to elevate your nursing degree to a postgraduate level.
1. The Wealth Of Additional Knowledge You Will Acquire
Postgraduate master’s degrees in nursing and healthcare essentially build upon your existing compendium of medical knowledge. Therefore, this arms you with the tools and skills you need to pursue a specialist job role within your preferred area of study and practice.
Generally, a master’s of science degree in nursing will take one year when studying the course on a full-time basis and three years when choosing to study part-time. There is a wide plethora of rewarding and challenging, in equal measure, nursing specialisms, nurse practitioner, intensive and critical care, emergency, oncology, hematology, and clinical nursing, to name but a few.
During your studies for your postgraduate degree in nursing, you will also be afforded the opportunity to choose some of the modules you will study to ensure you are learning the most detailed and up-to-date information possible about your particular passion and areas of interest. One of these areas of specialist training is mental health nursing.
Mental health nursing is one of the growing and expanding sectors of nursing and healthcare, and as a result, there is a host of opportunities waiting for a postgraduate registered nurse who specializes in the area.
2. The Variety Of Flexible Studying Options
Naturally, the chances are that if you are considering undertaking a postgraduate degree in nursing, you are currently more than likely working in a medical or hospital environment already.
It is for this reason that postgraduate nursing degrees are designed specifically with this in mind, and nursing students at the postgraduate level are able to seamlessly slot their studies into their current nursing roles and responsibilities.
In addition, for the ultimate in fluidity and flexibility when it comes to your studies, visit Wilkes University to discover the multitude of benefits in choosing online programs to pursue and successfully qualify with a postgraduate degree in nursing and healthcare.
3. The Plethora Of Financial Aid Available
Studying nursing and/or healthcare at the postgraduate level can be a considerably costly affair. Therefore, universities and colleges, both online and academic institutions, offer a range of scholarships, bursaries and other financial assistance and is available on an individual basis. This gives more people the possibility of choosing to study. Nothing should come in the way of you wanting to achieve your dreams and reach your full potential.
4. Close Links & Affiliations With Hospitals & Medical Schools
Prestigious, professional, and established universities and colleges that offer a postgraduate degree in nursing will build and maintain close collaborations and affiliations with neighboring medical schools and hospitals.
This not only affords the student the opportunity to work on placement during their studies but to work in their local community and build personal and professional relationships that will undoubtedly benefit their career in the future.
5. The More Job Opportunities That Will Open Up To You
Advanced registered nurses who have successfully obtained a postgraduate degree are able to apply for and, frankly, are more likely to get more senior roles both on the practical side of nursing as well as the administrative and managerial side.
A master’s in nursing will also stand you in good stead to pursue other leadership roles within the healthcare sector in general.
6. The Hours Are More Family-Friendly
Whether you decide to essentially take the proverbial year out while you commit to your master’s full-time or else choose to pursue your studies in conjunction with your current job role and duties part-time, the extra workload will benefit you, both professionally and personally, in the long run.
Registered nurses who possess a postgraduate degree in nursing are far more likely to be successful in their application for more conventional and senior roles that fit the normal working hours more than erratic, twelve-hour shifts.
7. You Can Embark On Your Own Medical Research
It is more than usual for a postgraduate degree in nursing to involve one or more modules involving your own personal research, both with practical work and an accompanying thesis.
If, therefore, you have a specific interest in your particular field that you have always wanted to, or moreover have recently found a passion within a different area of medicine, then a postgraduate degree will allow you to undertake medical research as part of your studies.
8. Your Levels Of Personal Fulfilment Will Soar
When embarking on and certainly after the successful acquisition of a nursing postgraduate degree, you will greatly enhance your expertise, experience, and knowledge, all of which will boost your sense of overall achievement and your levels of personal fulfillment.
Nursing is much less of a career and far more of a vocational journey through life, and once you have obtained your master’s degree in nursing, you will not only advance your career but also your sense of pride and accomplishment.
9. Your Salary Will Increase
Obviously, as previously discussed, you are unlikely to have chosen to become a registered professional nurse because of the financial benefits and high salaries, as both the former and latter are not usually associated with nursing.
However, it is true to say that once you have successfully completed your postgraduate degree in nursing, you will be able to negotiate a higher salary per year and be more likely to be successful in your applications for more highly-paid job roles.
10. The Fulfillment of Any Outstanding Eligibility Requirements
It is entirely possible, especially due to the ever-changing and updating nature of medicine and healthcare, that even after the successful acquisition of an undergraduate degree in nursing, there will still be some outstanding eligibility requirements that you must pass to ensure you can progress your career in the direction you wish to.
The opportunity to advance one’s knowledge, expertise and experience in the area of study that they are most passionate about and committed to is one of the most fantastic opportunities imaginable.
There truly are a multitude of reasons to advance your professional career to the next level by undertaking a master’s degree in nursing.
Top Postgraduate Course Options in Nursing and Healthcare
When pursuing a master’s program at a professional and prestigious institution, you can expect to choose a specialist nursing field rather than the continuing education of a variety of different topics and subjects involved in nursing in general.
MPH Master of Public Health
One of the fascinating postgraduate degrees in nursing and healthcare is a master’s in public health, which is as challenging and demanding as it is rewarding. Essentially, such a postgraduate degree prepares you for a career in the advanced public health sector and affords you a host of opportunities available to you that people with only an undergraduate degree in the field are far more unlikely to attain.
A postgraduate degree in public health will ensure you are fully equipped with the knowledge, skills, and professional acumen needed to ensure the protection and improvement of the rules, regulations, and facilities that protect members of the general public, community sections, and the health of the country’s population in general. You will also be armed with the experience to be able to genuinely assist in tackling and fighting major health challenges, such as the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, to name just one, and at local, national, and global levels of public health inequalities.
You will be able to pursue your postgraduate degree in public health either at a full-time pace or rather a part-time one to best suit your current workload and personal responsibilities. There are a variety of specialist pathways to choose from during your degree, including intelligence, global health, and management, or public nutrition, to name a few.
Postgraduate degrees in public health are specifically designed for experienced and working professionals in the healthcare sector who either want to advance their career progression path within the industry or else expand their experience and knowledge within the area.
Other popular and extremely professionally and personally enriching postgraduate degrees in nursing and healthcare include, but are in no way limited to:
- Doctorate in Clinical Psychology
- MSc in Physiotherapy
- ForenPsyD in Forensic Psychology Doctorate
- MB ChB Medicine and Surgery
- MSc Occupational Therapy
- DPsych Counselling Psychology
- MSc Therapeutic Radiography
- MSc Mental Health Nursing
Skills Required to Study and Work in the Healthcare Sector
A successful and rewarding long professional career in health care and nursing takes considerably more qualities, skills, and attributes than the experience of a postgraduate degree. Employers looking for nursing and health care workers and professionals are by no means just concerned with your clinical qualifications and professional certifications
It is also just as important that you invest and develop soft skills, which are basically your personality and life skills that are wholly relevant to your professional career in the healthcare sector. These so-called soft skills can seriously impact your future career in healthcare prospects, the performance and quality of the job you perform, the service you provide to patients and colleagues alike, and your general activities, hobbies, and passions in your personal life and downtime.
Key qualities and personal attributes that may well stand you in good stead for a career in healthcare and nursing include, but are certainly not limited to:
- Strong organizational and time management skills
- Excellent communication and people skills
- Resilience and physical and mental strength
- Emotional intelligence and empathy
- Tolerance and patience
Things They Don’t Tell You About Postgraduate Study Before You Start
Working towards a postgraduate master’s degree involves a lot of personal research that you won’t have experienced during your undergraduate studies. Unlike a bachelor’s degree, where you spend more than a few of the separate modules working together in teams, for postgraduate study, you will be required to conduct a considerable amount of your research and project work on your own.
Even if you are intending on studying online instead of physically at a college or other academic institution, you will, whether it is your ‘thing’ or not, be encouraged in after-class and extra-curricular activities with your fellow classmates.
In this modern world, age is finally not seen as any kind of barrier, especially when it comes to academic, postgraduate studies. You will find as soon as you enroll upon your master’s postgraduate degree that there will undoubtedly be a wide range of different ages, skill sets, and people with a wide variety of different past careers.
Perhaps the most incredible discovery experienced by a newly-enrolled postgraduate degree student is the number of new doors that are already and subsequently will be open to you because of the decision to further your already impressive academic education and experience. Postgraduate study allows the student to independently find the individual passions and desires within their chosen field and to network their way to their dream job in that area.
So if you are considering postgraduate degrees, hopefully, you are now well on your way to choosing your desired location, study means, and individual course title.