As the health industry evolves, new medical equipments and techniques are developed. The more and more complex nature in health conditions is demanding more experienced and qualified medical professionals. Therefore the registered nurses with just a certificate/associate level of qualification are unable to cope with the change. To stay competitive and to make their career safe and stable, the registered nurses are forced to join the RN to BSN degree program.
Online RN to BSN Program Overview
Since most of the registered nurses are working and have a family responsibility, the online RN to BSN degree program is the most suitable program for them to get a BSN degree. However one should keep in mind that the term “online” does not mean that the program is 100% online. The students need to visit the college premises occasionally; once or twice a semester or at the end of the program. Only the didactic component of the course is presented via online lectures, discussions, live chats and video streaming. The practical component that needs hands on practice is held at a health care center. There the students can interact directly with the patients and can apply their learned skills on a real life setting under a supervision of a licensed medical personal.
The course includes human anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, advance nursing skills and techniques, emergency medical procedures, phlebotomy and computer skills. The courses are designed to enhance their nursing skills and prepare them for management and leadership roles in the nursing field. Normally the online RN to BSN degree program can be completed in about 1.5 years of full time study. The length of the program depends on the number of credits you bring to the program and the study plan you choose i.e. part time or full time study.
Online RN to BSN Degree Requirements
Now if you are planning to join the online RN to BSN degree program, you must meet the following minimum requirements to be eligible for the program.
- The students are required to have a high school diploma or equivalent GED with a satisfactory GPA of at least 2.5. They should have grade C or better performance on the courses like human anatomy and physiology, microbiology, human development, introductory psychology and sociology, math, English composition and nutrition.
- The online students must hold an active U.S registered nurse license. The registered nurses need to have completed their training from an accredited program.
- The students must complete a criminal background check and drug test. They need to have a proof of recent physical examination and immunization.
- The online students need to have a well configured computer with a fast internet connection in order to attend the online lectures and discussion. A microphone, webcam and a headset is also required for video streaming and chatting.
- The online students need to possess a specific set of qualities, learning goals and preferences. They need to be responsible, self directed and motivated. Independence, effective time management skills and the discipline to study without external reminders are the characteristics, an online student must have. In order to successfully complete the RN to BSN degree program, the students must maintain grade C or better performance in each semester.
If you meet these requirements and prerequisites then you are eligible for the online RN to BSN degree program. You can fill the application form and submit your official transcripts and other required documents to an online RN to BSN training school.
Tips to choose the right online RN to BSN program
There are many options to choose from when it comes to joining an online RN to BSN degree program. Therefore it is important to narrow down those options and finally come up with the best one. Here we will point out some important tips when choosing an online RN to BSN degree program.
- The first and the most important thing is to determine whether the program is accredited or not. Accreditation is a process to determine that the program meets the national standards of health education policy. The graduates from an accredited program will be eligible for licensing and course credit transfer. It will also assist in future educational options. It is important to keep in mind that even if the school is accredited, the online RN to BSN degree program they are offering may not be. The other programs may be accredited while the specific program may be not. It is because accreditation is done on a program by program basis. Therefore you need to ask the school staff or faculty member personally about their accreditation programs.
- Another thing to be concerned is the length and flexibility of the program. The online RN to BSN degree program should provide enough time so that the students can learn all the skills and knowledge in a detail manner. Since most of the online students have family and job responsibility, the program should enable students to attend the class without disturbing their work schedule and family relationship.
- The courses offered are also an important factor to determine the quality of the program. The program should include all the courses that have been marked as compulsory in a nursing education program by the government. Because RN to BSN program needs more hands on practice, the practical component must be held at a well equipped health care center. The instructor or the teacher must be a licensed medical personal and must be highly qualified and trained so that he can teach you the subjects you need to know in a simple and effective way. The program should also provide computer skills to the students.
- Since most of the communication takes place electronically, the online students must be able to communicate effectively. The instructor needs to be available most of the time, so that you can ask for clarifications on the confused topics. It is also important to have a technical support available most of the time. It is a plus point if the school provide online demo to the students. This will help you to get an idea of both the quality of the school’s online program and how well the program materials will be presented to you.
So basically before joining an online RN to BSN degree program you should ask these questions to the institution or the program director:
Is the program accredited? If yes than what is the accrediting agency?
How long does the program take to complete?
How long is the clinical practicum course?
What are the courses offered?
Does the program provide computer skills to the students?
What do the previous students say about the program?
Where will be the clinical internship program held?
Who is the instructor or the teacher? Is he a licensed medical professional? Had he received any teaching training methods?
How accessible will the instructor be? How can he be contacted? Can he be contacted via phone or emails?
How long one should wait for his response?
Is the technical support available 24/7? How can the support team be contacted?
Is there a free demo available?
How much is the program cost? Is there any hidden or additional charges?
Does the program come with proctored examination online?
If you receive a positive answer of each of these questions from the schools then the program is most likely to be a high quality RN to BSN degree program. In order to find a reputable online RN to BSN degree program, you have to do your research. It is better to make notes of each school and programs so that you can compare the programs and choose the best one out of it.
Your Career after BSN degree
BSN degree is not the end of the line in nursing. After getting a BSN degree you can join the MSN degree (Master of Science in Nursing) or MHA (Master of Health Administration) or MPH (Mater of Public Health) if you want to continue your journey in the medical field.
The MSN degree is the advanced level post graduate degree which prepares nurses to seek a career as a nurse administrator or a clinical nurse leader. The degree is equivalent to the doctored level nursing education. Normally the courses are 18-24 months long and involve a long intensive independent study. You will find online MSN program as well as classroom based MSN program. The average tuition fee for the program is about $200 – $500 per credit hour.
The MHA degree is the professional post graduate degree which prepares nurses for careers in health administration involving the management of hospitals and other healthcare organizations. You can join either an online MHA degree program or traditional classroom based MHA degree program. Normally the program lasts for two years if a student studies full time. The average total cost for the program ranges from $55,000 to $80,000 including books and supplies.
The MPH degree is the professional post graduate degree awarded for studies in areas related to public health. The students gain skills and knowledge to promote the core functions of public health, including the prevention of epidemics and the spread of diseases. There are online based as well as classroom based MPH degree program. Normally the program lasts for two years if the students choose to take full time study plan. The average cost for the program is $140 – $250 per credit hour.
Why pursue an advance degree??
The simple answer for this is to have greater employability and higher salary because more education adds up to big career advantages. Some may pursue the advance degree for personal reasons but most of the nurses do it to have more opportunities in the nursing field. The advance degree provides additional trainings to the nurses in order to move into new areas of nursing that interests them. The degree program prepares nurses to face more complex nature of health problems and hence prepare them for advance management and leadership roles.
Best RN To BSN Schools in Your Area
As the largest private university in North America, University of Phoenix has locations nationwide, and is available online in most countries around the world. Whether you're seeking a college degree at an associate's, bachelor's, master's, or doctoral level, we can help you reach your academic goal and sooner than you might think.
- RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing
- M.S. in Nursing/Master of Health Administration
For over 35 years, Keiser University has provided student-centered, quality career education. Keiser University Online offers degree programs online to prepare students for in-demand professions.
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Earn your degree online with Grand Canyon University. We offer approximately 100 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs that can be completed 100% online. Degree programs are available in the fields of education, nursing and health sciences, business, fine arts and production, and liberal arts.
- B.S. in Nursing (Registered Nurse - R.N. to B.S.N)
- M.S. in Nursing: Health Care Informatics (Bridge)
- M.S. in Nursing: Public Health (Bridge)
- And more...
- B.S. in Nursing (BSN)
- Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.) - General
- BS in Nursing (RN to BSN)
Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education. Eligible students can receive college credit for prior military experience and coursework—up to 75 percent of the credit needed for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.*
- Bachelors of Science in Nursing - RN to BSN
- RN to MS in Nursing
- DNP - Family Nurse Practitioner
- And more...
Study online with California University of Pennsylvania. We offer certificate and bachelor's and master's degree programs in a wide variety of fields that can be completed 100% online.
- RN-BSN Program in Nursing
- MS in Nursing - Nursing Administration and Leadership
- Nursing (RN-BSN)
Take a new step in your education with Chamberlain College of Nursing. We offer associate, bachelor, and master's degree programs in nursing, plus a doctorate in nursing practice.
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN)
- Nursing (RN completion to BS) (RN req.)
- Nursing Administration (MS)