Free Essay: Is Nursing a Vocation or Profession

Published: 2022-07-29
Free Essay: Is Nursing a Vocation or Profession
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories: Profession Nursing care
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 676 words
6 min read

A profession involves an individual's occupation that requires training and specialization to a set of skills and knowledge and provide service to others. Members of a profession also abide by a set of code of ethics that obligate them to integrity, competency and many other set of qualities that ensure adherence to the desired standards (Clement, 2017). A vocation often involves an occupation, though closely related to religious issues and refers to a calling from God to perform the duty. The debate on whether nursing is a profession or vocation has yet been established, however, regarding the definition, nursing is a profession. Therefore, this paper discusses why nursing is a profession and presents reasons why it is a profession and not a vocation.

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A registered nurse is based on competency and acquisition of formal education through completion of a systematic, and comprehensive knowledge base. Nurses in the United States have a specified education and training approved by a professional license in every state. The American Nursing Association (ANA) has a code of ethics and practice standards that require nurses to observe, failure to which can result to revocation or sanction of the license. Nurses use their specialized knowledge and experience coupled with a unique set of skills to promote good health and ease pain or suffering in patients regardless of the working environments. Different nursing boards at the state level observe the licensure of the registered nurses and make sure there is continuity in education during their career.

Continuous education ensures that nurses stay knowledgeable on matters related to healthcare and diverse settings. Nursing is a profession that requires constant learning to remain updated on the current healthcare (American Nurses Association, 2018). Registered nurses specialize in their nursing career to ensure quality care is guaranteed. The constant requirement of knowledge base through conferences and lectures is to maintain competency, expand skills and increase their level of preparedness for emergency situations. Therefore, the obligation to competency makes nursing a profession. The ability to control individual actions is a characteristic of a profession.

American Nurses Association (2018) report recommended that 80% of registered nurses should be holders of a Bachelor's degree, while doctorate ready nurses increase by half by 2022. A higher level of education in the nursing career is essential, years back, diploma programs were offered where, a majority were taught in hospitals. Conversely, a majority of diploma level programs has significantly reduced, and many boards require baccalaureate or masters degrees. The several certifications and education levels assist nurses in deliverying better patient-centered services; hence, further back up that nursing is a profession. According to (Hoeve, Jansen & Roodbol, 2014), an individual cannot claim to have a calling from God to be a nurse whereas they do not have any knowledge regarding drugs and healthcare. Moreover, it would result in adverse effects and healthcare crisis because of the employment of inexperienced personnel.

Nursing attracts a shared culture and a set of norms inspired by the desire to provide care to people. There may be nurses who desire to care for a particular patient population, and the common bond is to provide care through service delivery for exchange with remuneration. A core value in ensuring that families and patients realize optimum health status through caring and ethics. The entire nursing specialist incorporates the aspect of increasing patient care; providing expert services, and the aspiration to develop as a nurse.

Explicated above, nursing is a profession because of the presence of established policies, code of ethics that sets out educational requirements for nurses. Nurses are pursuing increasing their current education level as required by the American Nursing Association (ANA). Hence, the obligation to competency makes nursing a profession.


American Nurses Association. (2018). Heading toward the Next Stage. 2017 ANA Annual Report, 13(6). Retrieved from

Clement, I. (2017). Chapter-02 Nursing as a Profession. Textbook of Nursing Foundation, 38-63. doi:10.5005/jp/books/12979_3

Hoeve, Y. T., Jansen, G., & Roodbol, P. (2014). The nursing profession: public image, self-concept and professional identity. A discussion paper. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 70(2), 295-309.

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