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Nursing Degrees Guide

Health
Online Schools Guide

A nurse is a medical professional who spends his or her time caring for many patients in an array of different settings, such as hospitals, long-term care facilities, rehab centers, clinics, doctors’ offices, schools, and other settings. Registered nurses assist physicians, assess patients to determine their care plan, write care plans for each patient, take the vital signs of patients, review the medical history of patients, educate patients on their diagnosis and medications as well as future treatments, and administer lifesaving measures as well as medications. Registered nurses also act as medical interpreters for doctors and other medical professionals and staff to ensure the patients understand their diagnosis, their prognosis, and the details of their treatment plans.

It is imperative that registered nurses receive the proper education and training to be qualified to do their job. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, students will need to obtain at least an associate’s degree in nursing to be eligible to take a licensing exam in the state in which they live to receive their nursing license to practice in the field. Registered nurses can also earn a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing as well as a Master of Science degree in nursing if they so choose.

Associate’s Degree in Nursing

Can you get an associate degree in nursing online?

For people who work part-time or full-time jobs or who are raising a family, being able to complete an entire degree program online is a godsend. There are many associate’s in nursing degrees that are available online, but they are considered hybrid classes instead of fully online. This means that the student can take all his or her classes online as well as watch lectures by instructors and participate in class discussions and other class activities from the comfort of their own homes or any other place in which they want to do their coursework, but they will have to complete their nursing labs on campus and their clinicals in local hospitals or other medical settings. This mixture of online and in-person classes, labs, and clinicals is still a wonderful opportunity for busy students, especially for people who work other jobs but want to change careers or advance their current careers if they are already in the nursing field as a nursing assistant or some other type of medical professional since their schedule will still be pretty flexible.

What’s the difference between a diploma in nursing and an associate degree in nursing?

The biggest difference between a registered nursing diploma and an associate degree in nursing program is the fact that students in an associate degree program for nursing will be taking college courses while students in a registered nursing diploma program do not. Basically, an associate degree program in nursing will give students a head start on further education. College course credits will transfer to a registered nursing degree to a Bachelor of Science and nursing degree program if they so choose to continue their education.

Both the registered nursing diploma programs and associate degree in nursing programs take around two years, possibly three years, two complete and will enable graduates from either program to be able to take the test to obtain their license as a registered nurse. For those graduates who only have a nursing diploma, though, it will take much longer and a lot more coursework to achieve the level of a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Students should keep in mind that the more education they have in the field of nursing, the more job opportunities at higher income levels they will have available to them upon graduation.

What is a RN salary?

The majority of students who enter into a nursing degree program usually do so because they want to work in the health care field while being afforded the opportunity to help others. From assisting a physician with patient vitals in a hospital, doctor’s office, or clinic or conducting assessments and administering lifesaving measures to a patient in a hospital emergency department, almost every student in the nursing field wants to become a graduate that can help save lives and make a difference in people’s lives.

Graduates of nursing programs also want to make a decent living and can do so as a registered nurse. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for registered nurses in the United States is about $72,000 per year, which averages out to $35 per hour. Nurses who go on to further their education with a bachelor’s degree in nursing or a master’s degree in nursing can garner jobs such as nursing administrator, nurse researcher, or nursing educator in which they can make around $95,000 per year or more in the nursing profession.

Online RN To BSN Degree

How fast can you finish an online RN to BSN?

Normally, it will take four years to complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program but accelerated programs offer students the opportunity to finish their degree program much more quickly.  An accelerated program can take from one year to two to three years to complete, depending on the student’s previous education level and whether the student is enrolled in a program on a full-time or part-time basis. One way to complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program faster is if a student is already a registered nurse with an associate’s degree or diploma in registered nursing. Since many credits will transfer from the student’s original program to their Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, the time it will take to earn their bachelor’s degree will be decreased tremendously. It will also make learning much easier since the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program will build upon the skills and knowledge they already have obtained. Also, a student can decrease the amount of time they have to spend in their bachelor’s degree program by taking classes online since they can work at their own pace and possibly complete the degree program even sooner. 

What does RN to BSN mean?

A Bachelor of Science degree in nursing is an undergraduate level degree for students who want to become registered nurses or who are already registered nurses with a diploma or an associate’s degree in registered nursing. Courses in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree will teach students the latest in patient care technology, research, health promotion, and safety and quality within the health care system. Many hospitals, clinics, and facilities are encouraging registered nurses to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree to help improve safety and to be ready for future health care challenges that are set to come up. The Bachelor of Science in nursing program basically expands on the basic nursing skills that registered nurses already possess that they have been taught in a diploma or an associate’s degree program. A registered nurse who has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree can continue their education to obtain their Master of Science in Nursing degree as well as certificate programs to specialize in certain areas of nursing, such as nurse educator, nurse practitioner, or nurse manager. By earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, nurses will have advanced skills that will help them stand out in the job market and advance to much higher levels in their careers. According to a survey conducted in 2021 by the American Association of College of Nurses, the average rate of job offers for registered nurses with Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees is 60 percent and that number increases over a time period of about six months to around 93 percent.

What courses will you take in a RN to BSN program?

The main goal of all registered nursing degree programs is to teach students to provide excellent patient care, which includes taking the health histories of patients, performing physical exams on them, administering medication and treatments, and providing health education and even counseling to patients. Students will learn how to oversee unit operations, monitor the admission and discharges of patients, and an array of other nursing skills that they will need to be leaders in their field. According to Payscale.com, nurses with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree will earn a median salary of around $88,000 per year, but that figure will depend on the area in which a nurse works and the size of the facility and the type of facility that they work for.

I’m Nervous About Taking Classes Online. Is It Easy for Beginners?

For students who are new to taking classes online, it can be very challenging since it is a fairly new way of learning new things. It is not always easy and when students embark on a registered nursing degree online, there will be a large amount of work to complete, but there are things to do to make an online program proceed a little easier for students new to the game.

First of all, students should read all announcements and become organized with the dates that various reports and projects are due. This includes knowing ahead of time when tests or quizzes will be coming up so that each student is prepared to do their best. Students should engage in discussions with other classmates and instructors to keep on top of the topics that they have to learn for their chosen program. Students should be sure to learn what type of format the instructor prefers their work to be turned in so that they can achieve good grades and have open communication with their instructors.

Online RN To MSN Degree

How long does it take to bridge from RN to MSN?

The majority of bridge programs for registered nursing to Master of Science in Nursing degrees take about three years to three and a half years to complete. Students can graduate more quickly if they roll in an accelerated program or if they have existing credits that can transfer to their master’s degree program. Students who can only take classes on a part-time basis will need a longer amount of time to complete their coursework since there are normally at least 37 to 50 units of coursework to get through before a student can graduate with their Master of Science in Nursing degree. Students can also opt for an online Master of Science in Nursing degree program from their registered nursing status may be able to graduate a little quicker since they can work at their own pace no matter what time of the day or night they have to complete their classes.

Students enrolled in a Master of Science in Nursing degree program can take certain specialty tracks that will allow them to specialize in certain areas of nursing, such as pediatrics, family and individual health, or even adult-gerontology.

Are RN to MSN Programs Worth It?

Many nursing professionals as well as nursing students and registered nurses are already looking at the future and want to take their careers to a higher level. To be able to fill advanced nursing positions, one of the main requirements is that a student obtains a master’s degree in nursing, which is referred to as a Master of Science in Nursing degree or simply the initials MSN. Graduates with a Master of Science in Nursing degree have a wider range of career options and they can specialize in certain areas of nursing, such as a nurse educator, nurse anesthesia, a clinical nurse specialist, or even a nurse practitioner or a psychiatric nurse practitioner which means they can eventually open their own practice with a doctor that can oversee it. All of these positions can earn nurses with their master’s degree a very lucrative six-figure annual salary, so it is definitely worth it to pursue a Master of Science in Nursing degree for a registered nurse with an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree if at all possible. For example, a certified registered nurse anesthetist will make a median salary of more than $195,000 per year, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, which happens to be more than double an average registered nurse’s salary level.

What is an RN-BSN-MSN Program?

Many schools, both online and on-campus, now offer registered nurses (RNs) the ability to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and a Master of Science in Nursing Degree within the same program. This can save students time as well as money since it can be more cost-effective to earn two degrees at once within one specific program at a college, university, or nursing school.

 This type of program will allow students to take Master of Science in Nursing courses in place of certain Bachelor of Science in Nursing courses, possibly as electives, which count toward both degree programs. The Master of Science in Nursing courses offer not only a higher level of content but the instruction the students receive is much more focused in specific areas than the classes that are similar to some of the classes within the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

Keep in mind that these accelerated programs do not always offer graduates an award for their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree coursework, so the students just simply end up with their master of science in nursing degrees but because they completed the bachelor’s degree required coursework, they are eligible to earn their master’s degree.

When it comes to registered nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing to Master of Science in Nursing degree programs that are combined, there are three basic types. There are programs that will award graduates with a Bachelor of Science in nursing degree once those requirements are met during the course of the program. There are other programs that simply award a Bachelor of Science in nursing degree along with the Master of Science in Nursing degree at the end of the entire program, and there are programs that offer the registered nursing to Bachelor of Science in Nursing to Master of Science in Nursing degree but only within the Master of Science in Nursing degree at the end of the program.

Online BSN Degree

What is an online BSN program?

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing program was created to provide students with the knowledge they need to become successful registered nurses with a tremendous amount of leadership skills as well as nursing skills and knowledge. The program normally takes four years to complete and will provide students with classroom instruction along with time in the laboratory, simulator activities, and most importantly, hands-on experience during clinicals that students will complete in a medical setting, such as a hospital, doctor’s office, or long-term care facility. The program is designed to prepare students for the registered nursing licensure exam that all graduates must pass in all 50 states to be employed as registered nurses in that particular state. Online programs allow students to take classes at their own pace and still receive the same amount of classroom instruction and test-taking as traditional students, but labs and clinicals must be done in person, which means the online program is more of a hybrid one.

Is It Possible to Work Full Time and Earn a BSN Online?

Due to the increasingly popular method of taking online bachelor of science and nursing classes, it is much easier than it has ever been before for registered nursing students to work full-time or part-time or raise a family while attending their classes at any time of the day or night that is convenient for them within their busy schedules. Although clinicals and lab time must be done in person, the majority of classes for a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program can be completed fully online.

Students using the online format of coursework will still receive the same amount of instruction and classroom activities as their traditional student counterparts but will simply be able to take most of their classes at a time that is convenient for them. They will even have access to academic advising from instructors as well as tutoring, library services, technical support, and other support services. Graduates will be prepared to provide direct patient care, administer medications and lifesaving majors to patients, and to conduct a wide range of nursing practices from the skills and knowledge they have developed throughout the course of their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program. Registered nursing is one of the top career choices for both men and women currently, since the healthcare industry is growing rapidly, so the job market is very secure and stable with a much higher income level predicted for those with a bachelor of science in nursing degree.

What Are the Technical Requirements for Online BSN Courses?

Students in a Bachelor of Science and nursing degree program will learn about patient care technology, health promotion, safety and quality within the health care system, and research skills. Many employers are encouraging nurses with a diploma in registered nursing or an associate degree in nursing to continue on for their Bachelor of Science and nursing degree since they will have even more knowledge, clinical practice, and nursing skills than before. Graduates can even choose to continue on for their Master of Science and nursing degree, which will allow them to advance their careers to even higher levels in which they can specialize in certain areas, such as nurse educator, nurse anesthesia, and nurse practitioner.

How Long Does It Take to Become a BSN?

Most Bachelor of Science in nursing programs take four years to complete but because of the advent of fully online classes, students can complete their bachelor’s degree program in record time of only one to three years. Also, students who already hold a registered nursing degree from an associate’s degree program or diploma program can shorten the program down to two to three years instead of four because of their years of experience and the tons of nursing skills and knowledge they already possess. Also, students completing their bachelor of science in nursing degree online have greater flexibility and will cut down on the time they would have spent commuting back and forth to classes at certain scheduled times each week and can do their assignments at times that work for them and their schedules. Programs like these can help nurses increase their income potential from $40,000 to $60,000 a year to a whopping $88,000 to $95,000 per year once they receive their bachelor of science in nursing degree, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Online BSN TO MSN Degree

How long does it take to bridge from BSN to MSN?

By enrolling in and completing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing to Master of Science in Nursing degree program, students can earn their Master of Science in Nursing degree much more quickly, and oftentimes, it is more affordable than it would otherwise be. These types of programs usually take about 25 hours of course bridge work which will include credits that help students bridge the gap between the two degrees.

Once the bridge portion of the process is completed, students can then move into the part of the program in which they will fulfill the requirements for the advanced master’s degree in nursing program, which will more than likely include choosing a specialization if they want to move into an even more advanced stage in the nursing practice. Examples of specializations include nurse practitioner or nurse educator. It normally takes students around three years to complete all of the requirements for the Master of Science Degree in Nursing program, but by opting for the bridge program, students can actually complete everything in about a year and a half to two years.

Do MSN make more than BSN?

Graduates who have earned a Master of Science in Nursing degree can make thousands of dollars more per year than nurses who only hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. According to the latest information from the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics, nurses who have a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing will often bring in an income of about $53,000 per year to $116,000 per year.

While the low end of income for a graduate who holds a Master of Science in Nursing degree is about $84,000 per year and they can make up to nearly $200,000 per year depending on the career path they take. No matter which degree a nurse has earned, she will definitely have plenty of job security instability since the field of health care is continually growing in leaps and bounds and can garner a very good income compared to other career choices.

Is MSN in nursing education worth it?

For students who are already registered nurses and have a strong passion for teaching others, they can seek out a new career opportunity within the nursing field by earning a master’s degree in nursing with a specialization in nursing education. This type of degree is definitely worth the time, energy, and money it will take to achieve it because there are a variety of different career options as a nursing teacher and graduates will have the opportunity to find the perfect job for them.

Once a student graduates with a Master of Science in Nursing degree with a nurse educator specialization, the graduate will then qualify for post-graduate nursing certificate programs which can help them continue to grow within the field of nursing and advance their career even further. A student can garner a position in management as a nurse leader if they specialize in the nursing leadership and administration program or other avenues of certificate programs that can allow them to specialize in certain areas of nursing, such as gerontology or family nursing.

Can MSN be done online?

Yes, a master of science in nursing degree can be completed by students online and there are many online programs to choose from. The master’s degree in nursing programs online offer the same exact degree as the degrees the students receive who attended classes on campus.

Online learning allows students to attend the school of their choice without having to relocate and without having to commute long distances to attend classes. Students will also be able to complete their coursework at times of the day or night that is convenient for them and their busy schedules.

There are many prestigious nursing schools that offer Master of Science in nursing programs that are fully online which allows students to make the best choice possible for themselves and their careers. Students can choose online master of nursing degree programs based on the academic quality of the program as well as affordability, program offerings, and reputation of the school and its nursing programs. Students can also continue their education after obtaining their Master of Science in nursing degree by taking classes fully online to earn certificates in a variety of specializations within the nursing field.

What Jobs Can You Get With an MSN?

There is an array of career opportunities for nurses with Master of Science in Nursing degrees and upon graduation, they are considered to be advanced practice registered nurses (APRN). According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the growth rate for advanced practice registered nurses is expected to reach 45 percent from 2020 to 2030. Students can choose to specialize in specific areas if they want, such as clinical nurse specialist, nurse anesthesia, nurse-midwife, or even nurse practitioner and can open their own practices under the direction of a physician. A master’s degree in nursing will also help registered nurses earn promotions at their current jobs or find a new job and, according to the latest data from Payscale.com, nurses who hold a Master of Science in Nursing degree earn a median salary of $97,000 per year and will have an edge over others when it comes to the job market for nurses.

Related:

Top 10 Online Master’s in Nursing
What Can I Do With a Master’s in Nursing Degree?
What Can I Do With a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)?
What Can I Do With A Bachelor’s in Nursing Degree?