Purpose and Overview of Essentials Baccalaureate Nursing Education

Subject: Healthcare Research
Pages: 4
Words: 1271
Reading time:
5 min
Study level: School


The Relationship between Essentials and Baccalaureate Nursing Education

The essentials of baccalaureate education for professional nursing practice connect ideas about undergraduate nursing work and expectations. Essentials contain nine elements that indicate the framework within which one should be trained. For example, Essential IV points to information management in nursing technology (AACN, 2008, 3). Undergraduate nurses must have skills in electronic health records. The primary connection between the regulations and education is that the regulations form ideas about the skills an undergraduate nurse should have to implement high-level care.

Application of Essentials

The Essentials are applied in nursing practice to standardize colleges in nursing programs. Each Essential shape nurses into essential responsibilities: provider of care, designer and manager of care, and member of a profession (AACN, 2008, 7). Essentials allow nurses to relate the extent to which they achieve each role and whether they can perform it according to the rules and principles of nursing (AACN, 2008, 6). Undergraduate nurses need to understand the values and needs of patients at the center. They can visualize the connection between care and their satisfaction. Essentials help with implementation in several areas at once: learning, leadership, motivation, and aspiration.

Thus, it is possible to formulate the main principles of Essential’s application in nursing. First, it educates nurses on the medical postulates essential to the care organization. Second, Essentials shape nurses’ worldviews by establishing ethical and professional frameworks for their work (AACN, 2008, 6). Finally, Essentials are crucial for adequately organizing information delivery to nurses and creating communication channels and support for learning and working.

The Roles of a Generalist Nurse with a Bachelor’s Degree

Provider of care is a role that nurses need to form partnerships with patients. It allows nurses to build a dialogue with patients, educate them, and advocate for their interests in care and outcomes assessment (AACN, 2008, 8). In addition, nurses assess the environment and manage these factors to provide direct and indirect care. Nurses should use an evidence-based approach and rely on ethical care principles.

According to the AACN position statement, nurses are designers, coordinators, and care managers. Nurses can act autonomously and imagine the value of their actions (AACN, 2008, 9). Nurses at this level visualize ways to rid the patient of the ailment. A bachelor’s degree allows them to evaluate their actions from different perspectives and create unique systems of care, putting their skills and knowledge into practice.

AACNs highlight nurses’ role is members of the profession and advocates for their cause and patients. Nurses must create an identity based on critical thinking, communication, critical judgment, and evaluation (AACN, 2008, 9). Developing and demonstrating professional values and ethical frameworks also act as tasks for nurses in this role. Nurses understand perspectives and opportunities that will allow them to develop their education and move up the career ladder.

Overview of Essentials

There are a total of nine Essentials that the AACN offers as guidelines for educational institutions.

Liberal Education for Baccalaureate Generalist Nursing Practice

Liberal Education is based on building nursing skills through cultural, scientific, and social knowledge (AACN, 2008, 10). The position is based on the need to empower nurses with choices and the ability to make their own unique decisions in practice. The goal is to develop equitable and diverse perspectives based on each individual’s cultural identity (AACN, 2008, 11). The value of critical competencies lies in need for nurses to develop a human and empathic attitude toward the profession.

Basic Organizational and Systems Leadership for Quality Care and Patient Safety

Essential is responsible for building leadership competencies in nurses that provide insights into the value of improvement, the visualization process, and outcome measurement. It teaches nurses about patient safety, self, and the profession, pushing for comprehensive development (AACN, 2008, 13). The goal is to build teamwork and microsystem skills, patient-centered communication, and Quality Improvement (QI) principles (AACN, 2008, 14). Essential II’s critical competencies value is building nursing teams with ethical behaviors.

Scholarship for evidence-based Practice

Essential allows nurses to establish how evidence is formed and why it is needed in nursing (AACN, 2008, 16). Nurses can gather information from various sources, test it, and evaluate it for validity. Based on this, they develop QI and implement knowledge into practice. The purpose of the critical competencies is to teach nurses how to think professionally and create complex applications. The value is determined by the need for ethical care and nursing, without which the quality of care declines.

Information Management and Application of Patient Care Technology

Information management is a system for training nurses to evaluate the delivery of care in specific settings critically. Technology solutions are necessary for every aspect of nursing care, and the goal of Essentials is to build skills in using technology in daily practice (AACN, 2008, 7). The value of these competencies is to build work and clinical experience during training that will allow for autonomous work in the future.

Healthcare Policy, Finance, and Regulatory Environments

Knowledge of policy and administrative structure builds nurses’ understanding of the role of health care in establishing society as a critical aspect of existence. Essential provides nurses with an understanding of the breadth of medicine and why care must be provided by regulations and innovation (AACN, 2008, 20). The purpose of the critical competencies is to provide nurses with knowledge of their responsibilities in caring for and protecting patients. The value is determined by the need to create a community in which everyone involved in health care presents their role clearly and carries it with dignity.

Interprofessional Communication and Collaboration for Improving Patient Health Outcomes

Interprofessional learning is an opportunity to provide high-quality care as staff collaborate and look for solutions. Essential VI builds nurses’ sense of collective social responsibility, freedom of expression in the team, and professional communication (AACN, 2008, 22). The training allows nurses to understand what principles are best used to develop respectful and trusting relationships. The critical competencies aim to develop nurses’ communication techniques necessary to participate in professional practice (AACN, 2008, 22). The value is creating a trusting environment within teams that integrate the principles of safety, autonomy, and group dynamics into the workplace.

Clinical Prevention and Population Health

A baccalaureate degree allows nurses to participate in public health at population levels, so the goal of Essential VII is to create a sense of responsibility and commitment to the community at large. Nurses must prevent morbidity, reduce risk, and promote collective immunity (AACN, 2008, 24). Critical competencies are created to meet communities’ informational and preventive safety needs. The value of Essential VII is to have professionals with the cultural, psychological, and spiritual expertise to prevent disease at the population level (AACN, 2008, 25).

Professionalism and Professional Values

The nursing practice consists of preaching ethical and healthy principles to patients. Essential VIII ensures that nurses develop professional values consistent with the needs of health care: altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, and social justice (AACN, 2008, 27). Together, these form the competency goal of teaching nurses about professional behavior. The value is to prevent violations of ethics, law, safety, and the rights of patients and other staff members.

Baccalaureate Generalist Nursing Practice

Essential IX provides an overview of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes listed elsewhere. It summarizes by stating that nurses should strive for humanistic, highly skilled nursing care that includes cultural, psychological, and spiritual support (AACN, 2008, 30). The goal of the competency is to transform nurses’ consciousness and orient them toward the pursuit of enduring learning and an ongoing positive impact on the environment. The value of Essential IX is conditioned in synthesizing the nursing experience and its validation in practice.


American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2008). The essentials of baccalaureate education for professional nursing practice. ACCN.