For those past generations of nursing students who trained and passed their RN exams, it was challenging to go back to school to earn a BSN. It required enrolling in a four-year university, attending classes, and balancing academic demands with work. Many who wanted to obtain a BSN, but couldn’t see how to fit college into a full-time work schedule, let the dream go and remained RNs for their entire career.
The internet has changed all that.
A Faster Approach
Now, RNs who want to earn a BSN have the option of enrolling in a university online program. Though you may find that the length of the program varies from school to school, it’s conceivable for you to complete an online RN to BSN program within two to three years of entering.
The program offered by Louisiana State University of Alexandria can get students through in as few as 14 months, depending on which courses they have already completed prior to entering.
The accelerated approach to a BSN is enabled, in part, by how LSUA structures its courses. Each online nursing course is compressed into a seven-week term, allowing students to complete a course in half the time of a traditional class. If a student needs just nursing courses to get a BSN, he or she can complete the requirements within that 14-month span. If a student needs additional general education courses, it may take a little longer to complete a BSN — but a number of those courses are available in the same seven-week format, allowing the student to stay in an accelerated mode throughout.
80 Percent by 2020
Online RN to BSN programs have arrived at an opportune time — just when the nursing profession needs more educated professionals than ever before. In a 2010 report on the future of nursing, the Institute of Medicine — now known as the National Academy of Medicine — recommended that the percentage of nurses with a four-year degree increase from 50 percent when the report was released to 80 percent by 2020.
The LSUA RN to BSN program exemplifies how nursing programs across the nation are stepping up to meet the growing need for healthcare education. A number of hospitals and other healthcare facilities are investing in education as well, providing tuition reimbursement to RNs who pursue BSNs.
While it does take time, energy and effort to complete the LSUA program, working nurses can and do apply, enroll in online courses, and complete those courses en route to a degree. Long gone are the days when driving, parking and sitting in a classroom were an essential part of the BSN equation.
Learn more about LSUA’s RN to BSN online program.
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