RN to BSN programs involve a registered nurse going back to school in order to earn their bachelor’s degree in nursing. This type of program is designed for both students fresh out of high school to begin immediately earning their bachelor’s as well as the registered nurse who wants to further their education. The BSN degree will be slightly different for those students with no prior experience in the field, involving some additional testing and procedures. Here we’ll find out more about the process of the RN advancing to this level of education and the benefits of this degree for an LPN or RN wanting to move up in the field.
The Educational Process of the BSN
A bachelor’s in nursing requires a four year program and will require certain criteria, especially for those students that are new to this field and possess no other type of licensing or formal training. There are also accelerated bachelor’s programs available that can be completed in a shorter length of time, this type of program being only 20 months in duration. These types of RN to BSN accelerated programs enable the registered nurse or student to obtain their degree in half the time; however, these accelerated bachelor degree programs will usually consist of more challenging material and a more demanding course load. This type of accelerated BSN program will still have the same amount of required clinical hours as the regular four year program.
Many RN’s and LPN’s choose to obtain their bachelor’s in this field in order to move up in rank in their place of employment, while also receiving the benefits of a higher annual salary. Once an RN has obtained this level of certification, it can be common for them to seek additional education in order to become nurse practitioners, midwifes or a nurse anesthetist.
The Prerequisites for the BSN program
The prerequisites for this program will vary from state to state and also depend on the learning institution.
The minimum requirements for this program consist of having a high school diploma, a background in math and science, GPA of 3.0 and a high SAT score. A registered RN that applies for one of these programs is required to have a current license and an associate’s degree in nursing.
Below is a listing of common core courses taken in the BSN program:
- Nursing theory
- Nursing research
- Nursing in the community
- Health systems and policies
- Nursing leadership
- Senior seminar in nursing
- Senior project in nursing
- BSN role development
- BSN role transition
- Complex nursing concepts
- Health law
- Health compliance of regulations
- Health assessment
- Community oriented nursing practice
- Nursing leadership and healthcare management
- Research statics
- Care across the lifespan
- Culture and human diversity
You can also find available online programs for the bachelor’s degree in nursing where you can earn your degree while still working full-time in the nursing field. There are currently no available accelerated bachelor’s degree programs online. You will need to be sure the program for nursing online is one that is accredited and recognized by health care professionals, otherwise you will be spending money on a program that teaches unapproved curriculum and will therefore be useless in the health care field.
After having completed the four year BSN degree, you are able to work in a number of environments such as hospitals, assisted living facilities, surgical centers, private practices and other types of medical facilities.
With a bachelor’s degree you can also hold several different types of positions, such as:
- Nursing consultant
- Charge nurse
- Assistant to midwife
- Emergency room Nurse
- Nursing manager
- Nurse anesthetists
- Case manager
- Nurse specialist
The BSN nurse can also work as a teacher or manager, working for insurance companies or pharmaceutical companies. The average starting salary for this type of position will start at 38,000$ to 44,000$ depending on what type of company you are employed with and the type of position you hold.
When it comes to the job outlook for the nursing career field, this is one of the positions that can offer you a promising future with job stability and potential for advancement.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, due to the aging population there will be an increase of an estimated 51,000 new positions for the nursing field by 2018. This offers a career growth of more than 22%, faster than the average career. The salary for this field is also said to be on the rise, with a projection on an average hourly rate of 32.50$. The top ten percent will earn an estimated 95,000$ annually.
A BSN is also required to stay up to date with the advances of medicine and complete yearly continuing education credits in order to maintain their certification in this field. This is done by completing courses in this field, either in-class or online, taking online study courses, attending lectures and seminars, taking exams or volunteering in this field. Not all states will require the BSN to have a determined amount of continuing education credits in order to maintain certification, however, the majority of state do, with the amount of credits needed for recertification varying. When it is time to reapply for certification, a BSN nurse will have to show paperwork proving the amount of hours that have been completed.
The RN to BSN program completion allows a registered nurse to advance in their career while also furthering their education. Opening up doors for prominent positions in the medical and health field and considerably increase their value and marketability to potential employers.