Is An Online BSN Worth It?

An online BSN program is a popular choice for many individuals who are seeking to enter the nursing field. Online BSN programs offer students an alternative in completing their nursing degree as majority of the courses are delivered entirely online. The programs are delivered via an online learning platform that typically includes email, discussion forums, chat, multimedia course presentations, course materials, and other tools. Students are required to work independently and turn in assignments accordingly. Most programs feature various ways to communicate with instructors.

Resource: Top 10 Best Online RN to BSN Degree Programs

While the specific courses vary by program, common online BSN requirements include nursing fundamentals, pharmacology, mental health nursing, adult nursing, pediatric nursing, and ethics and legal issues in nursing. Many online BSN programs also require clinical components where students engage in hands-on learning experiences at a medical facility in their local area. The major difference between online and campus-based BSN programs is online programs do not require students to attend courses at a specific day and time and students can complete clinical experiences at a wide range of medical environments. Graduates of online BSN programs are prepared to pursue a variety of nursing jobs, such as staff nurse, pediatric nurse, psychiatric nurse, and clinical nurse educator.

How To Find The Best Online BSN Programs

For people looking for the best online BSN programs, there are a few essential aspects to consider when narrowing down choices. If a school is accredited is likely the most vital factor because accreditation shows that an official accrediting agency identifies that the school meets certain standards. An institution’s ranking is also a helpful characteristic and notable publications like the U.S. News and World Report rank online colleges and universities in a wide range of categories. Other helpful features to consider when searching for an online BSN program include cost, program requirements, financial aid programs, instructor to student ratio, and online learning platform. Three institutions that offer high quality online BSN programs for an affordable price include Baker College Online, University of Kansas, and Walden University. Baker College Online offers a BSN program to students who are currently licensed registered nurses. The cost of attendance is $205 per credit hour. The University of Kansas offers an online RN to BSN program that is open at all times and students can begin the program at any semester. The school charges undergraduate resident rates to all online students, which is $260.65 per credit hour. Walden University offers a BSN completion program and students have the ability to pursue an undergraduate minor. The tuition is $290 per credit hour.

Online BSN Degree Career Options

Students who complete online BSN have a wide range of career opportunities. The online BSN program enables individuals who were currently working to maintain their jobs to gain valuable experience to increase job prospects. For example, many BSN students are currently working as registered nurses and then apply for higher level positions upon graduation. Available career options include clinical nurse educators, oncology registered nurses, and critical care registered nurses. Clinical nurse educators develop curricula needed to train newly graduated nurses, other staff, and continuing education for practicing nurses. They earn an average salary of $73,000 per year. Oncology registered nurses specialize in treating patients with cancer and they administer chemotherapy and monitor progress. They earn a mean pay of $66,000 annually. Critical care registered nurses specialize in providing care for patients who have life-threatening medical conditions. They provide high-level, continuous care for patients and carefully monitor their conditions. These nurses make an average of $68,000 yearly. An online BSN program is a great choice for individuals looking to make a difference in the in-demand nursing field.