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The Bureau of labor Statistics estimates an addition of 711,900 jobs for registered nurses (RN) between 2010 and 2020 – which is much faster and much higher than any other profession. And as the requirement for registered nurses keeps growing, employers these days prefer to hire nurses with at least a Bachelor’s Of Science in Nursing (BSN).
This means that many RNs with associate’s degrees will be considering further education to get a BSN degree. There’s good news for such professionals – many colleges are now offering RN to BSN programs online, which enable nurses with associate’s degrees to go for further studies, without having to give up their jobs, and without having to have their names in a long waiting list for BSN degrees at a traditional college.
Here are some features of RN to BSN degree programs that will be useful to RNs willing to make this transition.
This a degree program for registered nurses with associate’s degrees or a Diploma in Nursing. It’s a transition degree which gives credits to RNs for their education and experience that they have already completed, enabling them to get a BSN degree by taking fewer courses in a shorter time instead of having to go the traditional 4-year route.
Usually, colleges will look for a given number of transferable semester hours, a minimum cumulative GPA – which will be different for each college – and at least a year of experience as a registered nurse. Besides these, applicants must also have an accredited associate’s degree or nursing diploma, as well as a valid RN license in the state in which they have been practicing.
The number of months and years involved towards the completion of your RN to BSN degree will vary depending on what courses had been taken at the preceding degree level. Colleges will do an evaluation based on the courses you had already taken, and then decide how many more and which ones need to be taken again. Typically, the degree may take anywhere between 1 to 2 years, with some even stretching to 3 years. The time taken to complete this degree will also depend on whether you are pursuing it full time or part time.
Besides general education courses such as English, Sociology, Human Development, etc, students are also taught support courses such as Anatomy, Physiology, Gerontology, etc. Core BSN courses that will be taught include advanced subjects, such as Population Health for the RN-BSN, Advanced Population Health, Evidence-Bases Inquiry in Health Care, Principles of Nursing Leadership and Management, Physical Assessment, etc. Comparable courses that RNs may have taken as part of their associate’s degree or diploma are usually transferable, subject to the discretion of the particular college.
Though specialty areas are more often offered for the RN to MSN programs, some colleges offer specialty courses for the RN to BSN degree as well. Options include specializing in Nurse Leadership and Management, Gerontology, or the Community Specialty.
If the salient features of the RN to BSN degree program appeal to you, it will be a great idea to go for this degree to advance in your career as a registered nurse.
Tags: BSN, Career as Registered Nurse, Diploma in Nursing, Healthcare, Nurse Leadership, Nursing Diploma, Registered Nurse, RN BSN Degree Program
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