Why study a Bachelor of Nursing after completing a Diploma of Nursing?

Nurse checking patient chart

If you’ve completed a Diploma of Nursing and you’re ready to advance your career, our Bachelor of Nursing is the next step. This degree opens up rewarding opportunities as you build on your expertise and move towards becoming a Registered Nurse.

Your career path 

“A Bachelor of Nursing gives you more scope for leadership, management and research opportunities,” explains Terri Sullivan, Bachelor of Nursing Curriculum Lead and Senior Lecturer at our Flinders Street campus. “There are more areas of nursing in which to specialise as a Registered Nurse, and you will broaden the scope of your practice.”

In this degree, you’ll learn vital skills in assessment and clinical decision-making, person-centred care, professional communication, enquiry and research, awareness of diversity and self-care practices.  It will prepare you for your career as a Registered Nurse, giving you the skills and expertise to work in multiple healthcare, industry and community settings when you graduate. As a Registered Nurse, you can specialise in such fields as:
  • Acute nursing
  • Aged care
  • Community/primary healthcare nursing  

The role of Registered Nurses versus Enrolled Nurses 

When you’ve graduated with a Diploma of Nursing and registered with the Australian Health Practitioners Agency (AHPRA), you can work as an Enrolled Nurse (EN).

After completing the Bachelor of Nursing, you are eligible to apply for registration with AHPRA, which will allow you to work as a Registered Nurse.

A Registered Nurse can make some decisions about the patient’s care and their treatment plan, while Enrolled Nurses have minimal input in the decision-making process.

In clinical settings, RNs have authority over ENs and can perform more skilled processes, including blood transfusions, administrating medication and carrying out diagnostic tests.  

Upgrading from a diploma to a bachelor 

The Think Education Diploma of Nursing provides a pathway to the Bachelor of Nursing, offered by Torrens University Australia

“Any student who has completed a Diploma of Nursing, and preferably consolidated their skills over a period of two years or more, can apply for entry into a Bachelor of Nursing,” Terri explains. “The course requires the students to be critical thinkers and use clinical reasoning throughout the degree program.”

Once you’ve completed the diploma, you may be able to transfer some credits to your study for the bachelor’s degree. This is called Recognition of Prior Learning. You can also apply to transfer some credits even if you completed your diploma at a different institution. 
To find out more about using your subject credits, visit https://www.think.edu.au/how-to-apply/course-credits.

Lifelong learning 

As a Registered Nurse, you can expect a dynamic and rewarding career. Like any path you follow, it will present challenges too. Which is why you’ll never stop learning – both on and off the job. 

As Terri explains, “It is essential for RNs to continue their professional education if they want to advance in nursing.” 

Check our Nursing Courses to learn more
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