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Which is more beneficial and less costly — a nursing informatics certificate or a master’s degree?

Tuesday November 20, 2012
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Question:

Dear Donna,

I am planning to pursue a master’s degree in nursing informatics. Which is more beneficial and less costly — a nursing informatics certificate or a master’s degree?

Future Informatics Nurse

Dear Donna replies:

Dear Future Informatics Nurse,

Since you don't technically need a master's degree in informatics, or even a certificate for that matter, in order to work in the specialty, one is not a better choice than the other. Neither one nor the other will necessarily make you more marketable.

However, getting a master's degree in general is a smart thing to do for current and future career opportunities, as well as personal development. So if you're planning to attend graduate school anyway and you’re interested in informatics, then the master's program would probably be a smart move. Regardless of what you plan to do in your future career in nursing, a master's in nursing informatics will serve you well. It has very broad applications. So, you would not be locked into that specialty by obtaining that degree.

Best wishes,
Donna


Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nurse.com’s “Dear Donna” and author of “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional” and “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career.” Information about the books is available at www.Nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.Nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.Nurse.com/Asktheexperts/Deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call 800-866-0919 or visit http://Events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.