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If you would like to enter into the workforce quickly, consider obtaining an associate degree in nursing. You will be able to save money by avoiding the more expansive bachelors degree while still receiving a good education. An associate degree in nursing can be your end goal or a stepping stone for further education. If you are not sure that nursing is for you, dont committee to a lengthily four year program, start by obtaining an associate degree. What is an Associate Degree in Nursing? An associate nursing degree is an academic degree that can be completed in two years and requires approximately 60 hours of class time or approximately 20 courses. This academic degree is usually awarded by community colleges, junior colleges, and four-year universities. Most nursing programs will have a non-clinical and clinical portion of training. The non-clinical portion, or course work, is broken down between general education and nursing courses. General education courses are design to enhance your overall education and preparedness while nursing courses include topics such as advance nursing theory, introduction to professional nursing, research methods and models of health behavior. The clinical portion of the degree is usually completed at a medical facility near you. What can I do with an Associate Nursing Degree? An associate degree can either prepare you for a career following graduation or it can be a stepping stone to a bachelors degree. This is why associate degrees are broken down to occupational and transfer degrees, occupational leading to immediate job entry and transfer leading into transition to a 4 year college or university. An associate in nursing degree will prepare you in the techniques and procedures required for promoting health, providing care for sick and disabled as well as provide knowledge regarding administration of medication and treatments. Upon completion of this degree you will be able to provide care, manage care as well as be a member of the nursing profession. Why should I obtain an Associate Nursing Degree Online? Work from home - Online nursing degree programs allow for maximum flexibility and control. You can complete the non clinical portion of your study from the comfort of your home, working evenings and nights or whenever it best fits your schedule. You dont have to worry about getting to class on time, traffic or gas prices. Get all your course material, assignments, tests, discussions and projects without leaving your front door. Flexibility - Not only does an online degree program allow you to work from home, it allows you to work at your own schedule and pace. You can obtain your degree while working full time and managing your family. Work as much or as little as you can manage. Due to technology advancement, you can email and discuss class topics 24/7 and be assured that you will get responses back from your instructor as well as classmates. Acceptance of Online Degrees - One of the most common fears students have is whether employers will value their online degree diploma. With the growth of online degree programs being offered, with most large institutions of education offering online course, with an increase in online course enrollment, the acceptance of this type of instructions has grown. Completion Time- Online degree programs are flexible. This means that you are in charge. You are the one that sets your schedule, timeline and pace of study. Depending on your current situation, you can complete a degree program very quickly or take more time. Bottom line, the decision is in your hands alone. Cost - While the cost of tuition is the same for an online program as an on-campus program, you will be able to same money in other areas. For example, by working from home you will save money on room and board as well as reduce driving time. How to choose a school to obtain an Associate Nursing Degree? The benefits of an Associate Nursing Degree are clear. But how do you select the right nursing school? When choosing a school to pursue your higher education, consider some of the following: Accreditation Job placement rate of graduates Student transfer rate (if its high you dont want to be at that school) Course offerings (make sure the school meets your needs) Faculty qualifications (who will be teaching you?) School curriculum For more information on Associate Nursing Degrees, Nursing Careers as well as tips and advice regarding online education, please visit us at Select Online Degree. Author's Bio: I have a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and a minor in statistics and measurement. I am very interested in education, specifically online degree programs as this mode of education has been rapidly growing and attracting more and more students. I have worked as a Director of Assessment and Accountability at a prominent high school district in Arizona as well as for the Arizona Department of Education. In both positions I had focused on education research, accountability and validity of education measurements. I am currently responsible for writing and maintaining a website focused on online education and the benefits of obtaining a degree online. Additionally, I am working as an assessment and research consultant for a high school district.