Nursing Essay: Never Use These Topics

Are you studying to attain a Bachelor’s in Nursing or acquire your Registered Nurse license? If so, you may be tasked with writing several research essays or term papers for your classes, especially those at a higher level. And while you may know a great deal about the medical field at this point in your studies, that doesn’t mean you should select a paper topic at random. Choosing the wrong essay topic can mean tons of extra work for you and a difficult paper for your instructor. Here are some topics to stay away from when composing your essay.

Controversial Treatments

You may feel you have a great deal of firsthand knowledge of controversial therapies and treatments, such as rebirthing therapy or homeopathy, and you may have some experiences that have led you to support these methods. However, nursing school is probably not the place to espouse your belief in alternative treatments that have not been fully vetted and supported by the mainstream medical community.

Typically, most nursing instructors and doctors do not support complementary and alternative treatments, as most treatments do not have sufficient empirical support. No matter how well-researched and well-written your paper is, you may be penalized for supporting such things. Instead, focus on writing about treatment methods that are accepted by the mainstream medical community. This does not mean you have to avoid discussing alternatives with your actual patients, should they desire to!


Another tricky topic that many medical students and nursing students want to write about (but should avoid) is vaccine schedules, and the long term effects of popular, required childhood vaccinations. Many parents mistakenly believe that vaccines are associated with a slew of negative health outcomes, and while there is no scientific evidence to back these claims up, the anti-vaccination movement is large and influential.

That said, you should avoid writing about this movement in your paper. Again, it is a highly contested topic and you generally want to avoid conflict with your instructors except when absolutely necessary. Further, it is probably not fruitful to lend credence to claims that are nonscientific while you’re in a medical setting. You will have to address the concerns of anti-vaccination advocates when you are working with patients, but you don’t have to in class.

Health Insurance Policies

If you work in the health care industry, you probably have a great number of experiences and opinions related to how health care is provided in your country. Your input is valid and should probably be heard by a number of political advocates! But that does not mean you should focus on public policies and political issues while in your nursing classes. This topic may cause conflict with your instructor, so avoid it unless asked to write about it.