How to Write a Nursing Essay: A Quick Guide

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Nursing essay writing guide

How would you define a nursing essay? It is not simply a discussion of some topic related to nursing practice. Neither is it a mere analysis of a burning issue. A nursing essay is much more than that because it is the most powerful and practical tool to demonstrate your knowledge of the discipline, as well as analytical and communication skills. Moreover, a nursing essay is on the very limited list of the educational techniques enabling you to put the knowledge to practice. To help you upgrade your essay-writing skills, we have prepared this article covering the following:

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Three Common Mistakes to Avoid in a Personal Statement for Nursing

If it is the case you are only starting to write a personal statement for a nursing program, please take note of the following advice. This guide is designed to help you avoid three important mistakes that are commonly seen in these papers. In the event you have a draft statement already written, then you may find this guide useful for reviewing your work with a view to improving and enhancing it. The tips below are the ones an experienced editor is likely to give you.

  1. Make sure your personal statement for the nursing profession is not just “ordinary” and exactly like so many others.
  2. Remember to include any information that explains the preparatory work you have been doing in readiness for a nursing career.
  3. Remember to say how and why you are interested in nursing and what it is you love about it.

It is the primary task of qualified editors to review and critique the essays and papers that are given to them, in this case, papers belonging to candidates submitting applications for the field of medicine. These experts know how very competitive this field is. An applicant whose personal statement does not contain the three common mistakes described above, but is focused instead on the love they have for their chosen field, has a much better chance of being successful. A personal statement that is creative and highly polished will improve the likelihood of you being accepted, not least because it will make your application more impressive and memorable.

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The Structure of Your Essay

After all, information has been collected and you have all the necessary evidence at your disposal, it is high time to create an outline for your future paper. Distributing the data properly guarantees a good flow and clarity of expression. A nursing school application is still an essay, so it must have its critical components, namely, introduction, body, and conclusion.


The first paragraph of your essay should introduce the reader to the topic he/she is going to read about. The introduction is important because it serves as a guideline for you and your readers. Be sure to present your topic, the purpose of your essay, and your argument. Provide some background information – not too much for the experienced readers not to get bored, but not too little, either. Of course, keep in mind that effective attention grabbers raise your chances of winning over the reader’s attention.

Body Paragraphs

Using the introduction and the thesis statement as an outline, discuss the topic step-by-step, providing new information in a logical order. While each paragraph must have a clear structure of its own, do not forget to use transitions between the paragraphs to enhance the overall coherence. The paragraphs should be organized in such a way that every new answer brings up a new question. Refrain from redundancies, tangential discussions, cliches, repetitions, and superficial statements that add nothing to the meaning of the essay.


Last but not least, a good conclusion is not simply a paragraph that consists of mere repetitions of the main claims, it is your strong chance to have an impact on the reader by suggesting some food for thought. This paragraph should both summarize the key arguments and answer the bigger questions. It is also a good idea to explain how your approach has made a contribution to finding a solution to a major issue.

Post-Writing Process

It goes without saying that to write such an essay effectively, you have to start early. Not only will you be able to avoid stress, but you will also benefit from “after-some-time” reading when you re-read the draft after at least 24 hours. Reading the essay anew, you will notice some mistakes and flaws, or maybe even discover new approaches to delivering some information.

Tips for Writing an Application Essay for Nursing School

Application essays are a required part of the applicant process and candidates are expected to write them to be considered. These types of essays are also (sometimes) referred to as statements of purpose, letters of intent, or personal essays. Essentially, an application essay is a chance for the applicant to submit a plea to an admissions board to be admitted onto a nursing course or program. In their essay, the applicant sets out their reasons for wanting to join the nursing profession and explains why a particular program is a good way of realizing their long-held dream.

Therefore, it is crucial to understand the elements that need to be included in such an essay in order to make an application successful. There are many important aspects that nursing candidates need to remember, but one crucial thing to keep in mind is that an essay like this needs to be carefully planned. To ensure the success of your application, this means creating an essay outline detailing the most essential items to be included in your essay. You also need to be mindful about the length of your essay – i.e. staying within the word count – to prevent the admissions board from discarding it. Where an application stipulates an essay should be 500 words or 1,000 words in length, this is exactly what this means – not less or more. Applicants should describe their life’s achievements so far and what they hope to achieve in the future.

Additionally, the applicant should make the personal statement portion of their essay quite short while reserving most of the space allowed to them for describing any experiences or events that have helped shape them. Other sections of an application pack can be used to provide less important information. Do not forget that members of an admissions board get several essays to read. Hence, it is essential to distinguish yourself from your competition.

Make sure the structure of your application essay is sound. This means checking that the format, spelling, and grammar are correct before you hand it in. An error-laden essay can cause readers to think that the candidate may not be suitable for nursing. In addition, remember, shorter paragraphs are easier to read.

What You Should Include in an Essay for Nursing School

Application essays for nursing school should have these elements:

  • Your reasons for applying for a particular nursing course/program;
  • Things the applicant finds interesting about the nursing profession;
  • Any preparation you have already done to succeed in nursing;
  • An overview of the applicant’s vision for their future in nursing;
  • Most important personal achievements and things that have made the applicant stand out e.g. school scores, projects, and so on.
  • Traits in the applicant’s character that indicate they would make a good nurse i.e. strengths and aspirations;
  • Any relevant experience in the medical field e.g. training, care of patients, internships, volunteer work, and so on;
  • Reasons why the admissions board should award a place to the candidate.

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Additional Tips on Writing Application Essays for Nursing School

An admissions or application essay serves the purpose of proving a candidate is worthy of being accepted into a particular study program. The application format does not allow much room – just a few words – in which to give a personal account of oneself. However, whether you get accepted or rejected depends on these words. The tips below are designed to help you write successful application essays for nursing school:

  • Choose a good topic for your essay: It is important that readers remember an applicant. So do not stray off your topic and support any information you provide.
  • Be prudent when choosing information: Include only information that gives a clear picture of your previous accomplishments and future aspirations, and impresses an admissions board.
  • Give the reader a clear picture of your life. An admissions board wants to see the candidate’s uniqueness rather than boring and mundane information.
  • Get readers’ attention in the opening lines and make them eager to keep reading.
  • Pay attention to the structure of your essay. It should have an introductory section, the main body, and a concluding section, and readers should not have difficulty reading or understanding these. Include a statement in the concluding section that will cause readers to remember you and your essay.

Application essays are a critical part of the admissions process for a nursing program. They can be the deciding factor in terms of whether you are admitted to a particular school or not. Therefore, you should create a plan before you begin to write your essay and ensure it is full of rich and interesting information. Something else that is important is ensuring your work is free of error. Your application essay is the only opportunity you will have to make a good impression on admission officers so use it wisely.

The role of nursing is often looked down on when it is compared to other study programs and/or jobs in the medical field. What is not always taken into account is how important good nurses are, how much study they have to do, and how tough their training is. Is it your aspiration to qualify as a nurse but you are unable to find a good topic for an argumentative essay for this field? In fact, it is not all that difficult. Take a look at current news items about nursing and select a fairly controversial subject with plenty of scope for argument. You do not necessarily have to choose a unique topic. You can even choose a cliched and hackneyed topic and spice it up by exploring it from an interesting and unique perspective.

Common Nursing Essay Topics

The in-depth understanding of the topic is the basis of a coherent essay that boasts strong argumentation and rationale. Whether your task is to prepare essays on being a nurse, analyze an intervention plan, or write a nursing essay on any other topic, first and foremost you should familiarize yourself with the instructions and the topic. If you have an opportunity to choose a topic on your own, think yourself lucky. The list of questions your essay could answer is virtually endless and might include:

  • Which demographic characteristics influence the effectiveness of interventions in patients with dementia?
  • Does home nursing have potential danger?
  • Which objectives of Healthy People 2020 are the biggest priority?
  • How should children with obesity be treated?

While considering the topics, focus on those you relate to or those in which you have personal experience. This is important because you will spend much time and effort on the essay and it is always easier to discuss something you are interested in. While all aspects of writing matter greatly, the success of the essay primarily depends on the thesis statement. The paper should be geared towards an academic audience who, most probably, has considerable expertise in any topic you choose. That is why it is crucial to know your target audience and design an individual approach to the readers. The impeccable structure of the nursing essay, topic choice, argumentation, and appropriate methodology will make your essay stand out.

Researching into the Topic

Gathering data is of paramount importance because it will be the cornerstone of future papers. The quality of your evidence defines how persuasive your arguments will be, in other words, the stronger your support, the more convincing you will sound. When doing the research, do not just rely on one source. Exploring multiple resources will enable you to acquire a richer understanding of the topic. Nowadays, when you can access academic libraries from the comfort of your home, it becomes easier than ever to delve into the world of up-to-date knowledge. You can learn about the most recent discoveries in the field of your choice by searching online articles that offer in-depth analyses of specific issues. Peer-reviewed articles are a source of illustrative examples and cases that will equip you with the profound understanding necessary for constructing a compelling argument. On the other hand, should you decide to cover a broad topic and showcase your knowledge on a variety of issues, it is better to study books as they provide a more general description of a particular theme.

20 Possible Topics for a Nursing Essay

You should find a topic idea in the following list that you like:

  1. Describe what the perfect working relationship should be between a nurse and doctor – as opposed to what this is in reality.
  2. Are the jobs that nurses do more vital than those of doctors?
  3. Would it help if the government offered more incentives for men to join the nursing profession?
  4. To what extent do home nurses abuse power?
  5. How safe is home nursing?
  6. Nursing is specifically a job for women.
  7. The nursing profession commands more respect than that of doctors.
  8. How vital is the role nurses play in patient outcomes?
  9. How many nurses should be employed in an average-size hospital?
  10. There is a lot of racial tension in the nursing industry.
  11. How acceptable is it to impose extra working hours (overtime) on nurses?
  12. Doctors and nurses should receive equal pay.
  13. Do you think nurses are exposed to more health risks than other workers in the medical profession?
  14. Is it acceptable that nurses be permitted to prescribe medicines?
  15. Nurses and doctors should be allowed to have global visas.
  16. Which group has the greater impact on the provision of healthcare – nurses or doctors?
  17. Should nurses in the developed world be obliged to work for two years in still-developing countries as part of their degree programs?
  18. The quality of the work that nurses do is impacted by an increase in the number of hours they have to work.
  19. Nurses are sometimes portrayed in a sexualized way – should this be banned?
  20. Should nurses be allowed to bring patients’ lives to an end where a patient is afflicted by a fatal or extreme illness?

If you want an interesting topic, there are several to choose from. Rather than taking a stance that is very obvious, add a unique perspective to your essay by choosing the opposite. Where possible, support all points with cases or situations and/or events from real life. The possibilities for exploration are many.

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