RN to BSN Programs Bring Better Career Opportunities

RN to BSN programs can bring better career opportunities to registered nurses with a nursing diploma or associate’s degree in nursing. Registered nurses who have a bachelor’s of science in nursing (BSN) are becoming more preferred by hospitals especially those with Magnet status over those RN’s with ADN or diploma degrees.

RN with BSN’s are considered to be more adapted to current and future nursing practice and are given more career opportunities. RN’s with diploma and ADN degrees also want to avail of the same opportunities and rewards available to BSN-educated RN’s. The RN to BSN program is a type of bridge program which allows diploma and ADN registered nurses to earn additional credits to upgrade their degrees into a BSN.

There are hundreds of these types of nursing programs available across the United States. Some of these are full-time and on-site programs, but usually allow a substantial portion of course work to be done online. A few schools also offer the program completely online. Demand for this kind of bridge program is rising because of the perceived need to improve and broaden the nursing practice. Since 2004, the number of RN to BSN programs have steadily increased.

The student should undertake a careful research about the quality of the program they plan to attend. Contacting different schools or inquiring about online offerings is a good way to start. He or she must determine whether she wants a traditional program or a more progressive one and a structured schedule versus a fast-track curriculum. Also, proper school accreditation, class schedules, and tuition fees should be considered against his or her personal situation before making the choice.

Some ADN and diploma RNs are hesitant to attend RN to BSN nursing programs for a host of reasons. They may be worried about the lack of time, financial constraints and the length of time to complete
the program. Some do not realize the importance of enrolling in such a bridge program since they are already RNs and are fairly established in their careers.

But these concerns can be addressed sufficiently. Online programs allow the student to pick convenient times for classes. While most RN to BSN courses last 1-2 years, students can study at their own pace depending on their circumstances. Many hospitals offer tuition reimbursements for continuing education. Students can opt to earn some prerequisites like liberal arts courses in more affordable community colleges than universities. Studying in-state may also save them hundreds of dollars.

Most if not all credits included in the diploma or ADN program can be transferred to RN to BSN nursing programs. Students attend classes in transcultural nursing and leadership, among other courses.
The aim of the bridge program is to enhance their clinical reasoning skills and for them to appreciate the wider scope of nursing practice.

Registered nurses with ADNs and diplomas who upgraded their degrees into a BSN have touted the benefits of completing the bridge program. They affirm a better appreciation of their profession aside from having furthered their career prospects. Moreover, they have a better chance to move to more places of employment because BSN-educated RNs can easily find work in most facilities. Lastly, significantly more compensation may be expected by graduates of RN to BSN programs.

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