Addressing the Cost, Value, And Student Debt in Nursing Education

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Executive Summary▸ The current initiatives to improve the academic preparation of nurses have added emphasis to the presence or prediction of thousands of dollars of debt, which may influence personal decisions about returning to school.▸ In this study, nearly 40% of survey respondents reported less than $25,000 in college debt and 23.5% reported greater than $25,000 of prior college debt.▸ Slightly less than a third of respondents reported no plans to return to school for more education but of those who did have an educational plan, the influence of prior college debt on their plans for academic progression was significant.▸ Debt and the influence of debt on education planning for nurses was confirmed as a concern that will impede achievement of the baccalaureate education benchmark for nurses unless steps are taken to address prior college debt and the cost of further education.▸ Nurse executives should take nurses' debt load into account when planning academic advancement initiatives.

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