The Top LVN to BSN Online Degree Programs

Online LVN to BSN bridge programs are for licensed vocational nurses are meant to prepare students to work as registered nurses at an entry-level. These programs are the same as the LPN to BSN bridge programs that are offered by schools since the LPN certification and the LVN certification are the same, only the names are different and depend on the state the school is located in. Bridge programs give LVNs an opportunity to increase their skills through a bachelor’s program and degree. This advancement in education will allow LVNs to move on to more advanced positions in the nursing field and could eventually get a higher pay rate in a competitive job market.

Ranked: LVN to BSN Online Degree Bridge Programs

These degree programs can usually allow a student to complete the program in as little as two years but all programs differ and depend on different factors including the amount of credits needed to finish. The advantages of online LVN to BSN programs are that they are usually flexible and allow the LVN students to continue working in their current position as they take their courses. Here is a compiled list of online LVN/LPN to BSN programs that are currently available.

Presentation College

Presentation College’s LVN to BSN bridge program is only open to LVN students who have graduated from a state-approved LVN program. A small group of 32 students are accepted into each term which makes application deadlines crucial. It is possible for students to complete the degree program in as little as four semesters and upwards to six semesters. It is a great program for those who may be working as an LVN already since the courses are given through the internet and not on campus. Even clinicals can be completed at virtual sites in Aberdeen, South Dakota, Fairmont, Minnesota, and Fargo, North Dakota on pre-assigned weekends.

Indiana State University

Indiana State University is currently the only school in the US offering a LVN/LPN to BSN degree program that is completely online. Students can even take their upper-level nursing courses through the internet. As for clinical hours, these can be completed in the student’s location and will be covered by ISU. If students need to earn general education and elective courses or if they need their college equivalency exams complete they can do so using ISU’s affiliate The College Network and the learning materials they provide.

University of Mary

University of Mary’s Nursing Degree Completion Program was established over 30 years ago. It was tailored to allow LVNs with the right and up to date certification to advance to the next level of education and earn their BSN. Keeping in mind the busy life of an LVN the University added an online platform to their already established nursing program in order to work with their student’s possible scheduling conflicts. Like most of the other online bridge programs there are times when the students will need to go on campus. This is for orientation, presentations, some clinicals, as well as for oral and written tests. There are certain theory and clinical experiences that can done in the student’s hometown but students have to secure an Articulation Agreement with an approved institution in order to complete their nursing practice hours. There must also be approval from the state’s board of nursing.

To earn their BSN students have to reach the University’s requirements. This includes a minimum of 128 semester hours of course credit including 32 from the University of Mary itself, 56 in the liberal arts (humanities, math and science, philosophy and theology, and social sciences). The Division of Nursing requires students to complete courses in microbiology, anatomy and physiology, general sociology, general psychology, lifespan psychology, introduction to organic/biochemistry, ethics, and elementary statistics (some of these required nursing courses will also fulfil some of the required liberal arts credits).

The LPN to BSN degree program is accredited with the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and also approved by the North Dakota Board of Nursing.

North Dakota State University

This bridge program was designed especially with working LVN students in mind. Those with an associate’s degree in nursing and an LVN license can enter into NDSU’s online degree program. It hopes to prepare students for challenging and rewarding careers in nursing homes, hospitals, clinics, private offices, schools, and other relevant healthcare facilities. Each student in the program is required to take classes on topics like nursing management, psychosocial nursing, and integrated family nursing. They’re also expected to take 120 hours of practical experience in the Fargo/Moorhead area. This means that students enrolled in the program must live in that given area. More so, students will also have to attend certain events on campus including an orientation, validation examinations, and some clinicals. LVN students can hold their LVN license from any state, however.

Middle Tennessee State University

The LVN to BSN program offered by Middle Tennessee State University isn’t an online program but it does offer a handful of online classes for LVN students. This bridge program is an accelerated program for those with a valid LVN license. Enrolled students are able to take a Professionalism class, a Research class, a Health and Gerontology class, and a Pathophysiology class through the internet or a hybrid online program but only if it’s offered during that given term.

West Coast University

The LVN to BSN degree program at West Coast University was designed so that the students can finish their BSN in about three years. The program allows students to flourish through their already established skill sets. The course curriculum requires students to complete general education courses along with the necessary nursing courses that are designed to hone a student’s leadership and management skills. Once the degree program is finished students will be ready for careers in community health, surgical nursing, pediatrics, gerontology, home care nursing, psychiatric nursing, and all other healthcare positions. WCU offers this degree program in a hybrid fashion with both in-class instruction and online classes which can allow LVN students to finish the program in about 34 months.

The Top LPN to BSN Online Degree Programs

Online LPN to BSN bridge programs are for licensed practical nurses are meant to prepare students to work as registered nurses on an entry-level. This bridge program gives LPNs a chance to increase their skills by earning a bachelor’s degree in nursing. This will also allow them to continue on to graduate programs. This will open students up to more advanced positions and higher pay rates as well. With most bridge programs students can earn their BSN in as little as two years. Since LPNs have a hectic work schedule, like most healthcare professionals online courses or hybrid online courses (partly done online partly done on campus), they give students the flexibility to create their own class schedule and finish their studies at their own pace.

Ranked: Leading LPN to BSN Online Degree Programs

This is a ranking of the top LPN to BSN degree programs at online schools. Some schools require time in labs or in local clinics. A graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing typically has more promising career opportunities.

Indiana State University

Indiana State University has one of the most renowned LPN to BSN program in the US. LPN license holders can earn their BSN degree completely over the internet. Even upper-level nursing courses can be completed online through ISU. Any necessary clinical hours can be done locally as well. If students need to pass college equivalency exams (DSST, CLEP, and Excelsior College Exams) they can use The College Network’s learning materials. Students can also use the program to earn general education and elective credits.

Presentation College

Currently licensed LPNs are able to earn their BSN through Presentation College’s bridge program. Unlike other programs this bridge program is only open to LPNs who graduated from a state-approved LPN nursing program. Only 32 students are accepted each term and it only takes students four to six semesters to complete the degree program. It is ideal for those students who are currently working as an LPN since courses are delivered online. There are also clinicals done at virtual sites on pre-assigned weekends. Virtual clinic sites can be found in Aberdeen, South Dakota, Fairmont, Minnesota, and Fargo, North Dakota. Since such a small number of students are accepted it is crucial that applications are sent in by the deadlines set by the school’s website.

North Dakota State University

Students who hold an associate’s degree in nursing along with the LPN license can choose to complete their BSN and be able to earn their RN license through NDSU’s online LPN to BSN degree program. This program is designed specifically with the working LPN in mind. The degree program looks to prepare students for careers in hospitals, schools, community agencies, nursing homes, clinics, the military, and any other relevant healthcare position. Students will be required to take classes on topics like integrated family nursing, psychosocial nursing, and nursing management while also taking a practicum of 120 hours in the Fargo/Moorhead area. Students will also be required to travel to the University’s campus for validation exams, clinicals, and an orientation. For those reasons students enrolled in the online program should be located in the Fargo, North Dakota area. They do not, however, need to hold a North Dakota LPN license; an LPN license from any state will do. The program will also accept students on a probationary period pending the completion and passing of their NCLEX-PN.

Middle Tennessee State University

The LPN to BSN program at Middle Tennessee State University isn’t fully online but it does offer a few online classes for LPN students. This is an accelerated program for students with a valid and current LPN license. Students can take the Professionalism course, the Pathophysiology course, the Research course, and the Health and Gerontology course online or through a hybrid online program if it is offered in that given semester.

West Coast University

As most know, an LPN is also called an LVN in certain states. In this fashion West Coast University offers an LVN to BSN program. It is made in a way that students can complete their BSN in about three years. The degree program focuses on the skills that LPNs already bring to the table. The curriculum includes general education courses alongside nursing courses that are made to develop a student’s leadership and management skills in the field of nursing. Students will be prepared for careers in paediatrics, gerontology, community health, surgical nursing, psychiatric nursing, home care nursing, and other healthcare positions. West Coast University offers a combination of in-class instruction and online instruction allowing students to complete their degree in 34 months in some cases.

University of Mary

The Nursing Degree Completion Program at the University of Mary has been in existence for over 30 years. It is made in a way where LPNs with proper certification can begin and complete their BSN. Understanding the hectic work life LPNs have the university created an online platform to accommodate their students’ possible scheduling conflicts. There are times, however, when students will need to be on campus including for orientation, certain presentations, oral and written examinations, and some clinical experiences. Certain theory and clinical sessions may be fulfilled within the students’ home community. It should be noted that nursing practice hours is dependent upon securing an Articulation Agreement with an approved institution as well as approval from the state’s individual board of nursing.

Students should apply with the Division of Nursing and once accepted must complete an application to the University itself. The degree program begins each fall (application packets are usually available in September). To be admitted students have to have a current LPN license, a GPA of 2.75 or higher, a passing grade on their LPN Comprehensive Predictor Exam, a “C” or higher in required courses, a clean background check, a complete pre-admission essay, and two letters of recommendation. They must also pass a drug screen after admission. Prospective students should note that all transcripts will be reviewed for free and a transcript evaluation will be provided to the student afterwards. It should also be noted that only applications that make it in by the school’s designated deadline will be accepted. Once a student has been accepted to the Division of nursing and the University of Mary they can apply for financial assistance and register for their classes.

To earn their BSN students have to reach the University’s requirements. This includes a minimum of 128 semester hours of course credit including 32 from the University of Mary itself, 56 in the liberal arts (humanities, math and science, philosophy and theology, and social sciences). The Division of Nursing requires students to complete courses in microbiology, anatomy and physiology, general sociology, general psychology, lifespan psychology, introduction to organic/biochemistry, ethics, and elementary statistics (some of these required nursing courses will also fulfil some of the required liberal arts credits).

The LPN to BSN degree program is accredited with the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and also approved by the North Dakota Board of Nursing.

The Top 10 RN to BSN Online Degree Programs

With limited jobs in the country more people are looking for jobs in the ever-steady healthcare industry including in the field of nursing. While education expenses can be quite high there are some affordable programs that can help students gain a coveted BSN degree. This advanced degree can open up more opportunities for these students along with a higher pay grade in the future.

Ranked: Cheap Online RN to BSN Degree Programs

Here is a compiled list of some of the most affordable online programs that offer a great education, too. You don’t have to sacrifice one for the other in order to advance your nursing career.

Baker College Online

Baker College Online has a BSN program for registered nurses. The program takes four years to complete and is meant for students already working in the nursing field. Students are required to provide proof of their RN license and maintain their RN licensure throughout their enrollment in the program as well The program requires all students to take introductory classes regarding online college success along with general education requirements that will demonstrate their proficiency in English. Once the introductory courses are complete students will take classes to learn clinical experience including practicums in community health and leadership. Other required courses are Physiology, Human Anatomy, and Fundamentals of Professional Nursing Practice. In order to graduate from the program students must pass all classes with at least a B- (2.7). Baker College Online charges students $215 per credit hour.

Walden University

This school offers several levels of nursing degree programs at affordable rates including an RN to BSN program. They also offer a post-master’s nursing certificate, a Doctor of Nursing Practice, and an MS in Nursing. Students have to have work experience in a clinical setting in order to be considered for these graduate programs. Registered nurses may take less than four years to complete their degree. Tuition for the RN to BSN program is $300 per credit hour. Walden University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Western Governors University

Besides their BSN program for registered nurses, Western Governors University also offers BSN classes for pre-licensed students, an MBA program in Healthcare Management, and MS programs in Nursing in Education, Nursing in Leadership and Management, Nursing in Education for Registered Nurses, and Nursing in Leadership and Management for Registered Nurses. Their RN to BSN program required 120 units of study that, depending on previous education, can take about four years ending in a bachelor’s degree. The program is meant to expand knowledge and skills in patient safety, technology integration, healthcare systems and policies, as well as in evidence-based practice. WGU doesn’t charge student per credit, instead they charge $2,890 every six months.

Liberty University Online

The religious university offers a number of nursing programs including their RN to BSN degree program. The program is designed to work with students’ schedules as they are expected to continue working as nurses during the program so they can get their clinical practice skills along with the online classes. Tuition rates are $325 per undergraduate credit. All students must pay an application fee and send over all college and high school transcripts in order to be eligible for the program.

Chamberlain College of Nursing

Chamberlain College’s RN to BSN program is completely online with degree completion possible in as little as three semesters. This unique program also allows students to take graduate courses while earning their undergraduate degree. Classes can be taken at any time and there are no set login times. They are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and charge $30,600 for the total RN to BSN program.

Indiana State University

The University’s College of Nursing, Health and Human Services has several degree programs including their online RN to BSN program and a wide range of graduate degree programs. Prospective students are required to have a high school diploma with a GPA of at least 2.5. They also have to pass both English and math exams which are dependent on their home state. Tuition for the RN to BSN program is about $286 per credit hour for Indiana residents and about $358 per credit hour for out-of-state students.

Drexel University

Drexel offers both an online RN to BSN program and an online RN to MSN bridge program. Prospective students must complete an application and show proof of their RN license. They must also have a 2.5 or higher GPA along with an Associate’s degree in nursing. Thirty houses of courses in nursing, microbiology, physiology, English, and humanities are required. Tuition for the program is $569 per undergraduate credit.

University of Wyoming

The University’s Fay W. Whitney School of nursing offers an online RN to BSN program for candidates with an Associate’s degree or diploma in nursing. The program, which is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate nursing Education, takes about one year for most students and requires no clinical section. Tuition for the degree program costs about $4,400 a year for Wyoming residents and $14,100 a year for out-of-state students.

Brigham Young University

The RN to BSN program is offered to students who already hold an RN license. The classes are offered online as well as in person and there is also a combination of both online and in person program available. In order to qualify for admission students must apply with an ecclesiastical endorsement, official transcripts, and seminary evaluation. An SAT or ACT score along with student essays are also required. This program takes between three and six semesters to complete and costs $4,710 a year.

Colorado Christian University

The RN to BSN program at Colorado Christian University is an online program made for students currently working as registered nurses. Students must take 120 credit hours broken down into 42 general education credits, 12 biological science credits, 28 nursing credits, and 38 for RN licensure credits. Most classes a five weeks long and cost around $380 per credit hour. Classes are taken one at a time. Students have to turn in an application, two essays, all relevant transcripts, and two letters of recommendation to be qualified for admission.

10 Fast Track Online Nursing Programs

With the job market proving to be difficult these days healthcare is a field that is seeing its fair share of applicants including nurses. Luckily, nurses who hold a degree are able to qualify for higher-paying positions in their field. If a student already holds a degree in the field they may be an ideal candidate for an accelerated or fast track program. This will allow them to complete the next step in their education quicker than a standard degree program.

Ranked: Accelerated Online Nursing Schools

These were considered some of the top accelerated online nursing programs from 2013. Each program is accredited and has a challenging curriculum. While some require lab credits or clinical rotations in the student’s hometown there are others that can be completed totally online. Based on these differences prospective students should consider what they’d like from their specific program and choose from there.

American Sentinel University

The accelerated nursing program at American Sentinel University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and it offers a completely online educational program. The University is private and the tuition is around $380 per credit hour.

If the prospective student has an RN license and two years of practical experience they could receive 30 semester hours’ worth of credit which would leave them with only 30 credits to finish their degree. The terms at the University are eight weeks long and are available to start each month.

Kaplan University

The well-known Kaplan University offers an accelerated nursing program that is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The tuition ranges from $315 for BSN courses to $368 for MSN courses. Students with an RN license who are looking to finish a BSN and an MSN degree program will be able to finish their undergraduate and graduate degrees within as little as 36 months through the University’s RN-to-MSN degree program.

Students can finish their credits toward their bachelor’s degree as well as those for their master’s degree in the same learning unit. This not only saves time but can also save the student money since they’ll only have to complete nine credits to finish their MSN degree.

Concentrations available at Kaplan University are Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Administrator, and Nurse Educator.

South University

South University is accredited by the Southern association of Colleges and schools. It is a private university that is a for-profit institution. Tuition for the accelerated nursing program is around $380 per credit hour. South University offers an RN to MSN program that allows students without a Bachelor’s degree to complete their undergraduate before graduating and continuing on to their Master’s degree. The University offers a flexible schedule in order to help meet the scheduling needs of the students. Students can choose from Nurse Administrator programs, Nurse Educator programs or Nurse Informatics programs.

Lewis University

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Lewis University is a not-for-profit Catholic university. Students can pick from four different starting times in each academic year and can also choose between completing a thesis and completing a practicum. Available concentrations are Nursing Administration and Nursing Education. Tuition for the Lewis University nursing programs are around $740 per credit hour.

Benedictine University

One of the top-ranking universities in the US, Benedictine University was founded in 1887. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools with tuition of $540 per credit hour or $1,620 for a three-credit course. With three different starting points students can complete their degree in about two years. Students are not required to complete a thesis for this program but they will have to complete a 120-hour capstone project.

Northeastern University

Founded in 1898, Northeastern University’s RN-to-BSN program has been running since 1973. In order to enter into the program prospective students have to hold a diploma or have an Associate’s degree from an accredited Nursing program with at least a GPA of 3.0. Classes for this program start in January, May, and September with tuition per credit hour around $550. Licensed Registered Nurses are able to complete the program and earn their degree in about a year.

Brandman University

Meeting the needs of working adults since 1958 Brandman University offers degree programs that are fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The tuition is a little more expensive than the previously reviewed schools at $500 per credit hour. The University’s RN to BSN program takes about one year of full-time study to complete. Students can start in the fall or winter semester only.

College of St. Scholastica

Founded in 1912 by Benedictine sisters, the College of St. Scholastica offers a BSN program accredited by the commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for $12,515 a semester. This is an accelerated program that is meant for those with a degree in a non-nursing field of study. It is usually completed in about four semesters which is about 16 months in total. Students are required to complete theory courses over the internet and complete required lab work at the school’s St. Cloud Campus. Once the student graduates from the program they become eligible for the NCLEX exam to get their Registered Nurse license.

Roseman University

The Roseman accelerated BSN nursing program is for students who have hold an undergraduate degree in a major other than nursing. While the program is online students have to complete exams and hands-on practical work in a simulation lab. Students will also have to travel to one of the school’s affiliated healthcare facilities in Southern Nevada to complete a clinical requirement in order to earn their degree. Roseman University is a not-for-profit private university that is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. Tuition for the university is $45,750 in total.

University of Wisconsin

A well-known accredited university (the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools), the University of Wisconsin is one of the largest public universities in the state. It was founded in 1871 and has an accelerated bachelor’s to BSN program that lets students with an undergraduate degree finish the program in about a year. The program consists of theory courses online with clinical rotations at a location in the students’ home town. Tuition for the University of Wisconsin’s nursing program ranges from $8,890 per semester for Wisconsin residents and goes up to $12,885 per semester for out-of-state students.

10 Really Cheap Online Nursing Schools

nurse on a budgetOne of the best things about remote learning is the cost: cheap online nursing programs make it much more affordable to get qualified to nurse. Many RNs who want to advance to higher degrees will earn significantly more in the workplace. RNs typically make approximately $65,000 per year. With an advanced degree, Nurse Practitioners earn approximately $80,000 and above per year.

Entry level education for Registered Nurses is hands-on training that must take place in classroom settings. Advanced degrees are available online, which makes them easier to obtain while leading a busy work and home life. Online class settings are available twenty-four hours a day for completing assignments.

Advanced degrees for higher level nursing certifications require students to do more than perform practical skills. The degree courses require a student to learn business administration skills for health management positions; organization activities for high ranking nursing positions and business to be applied to running a nursing department.

Advanced Practical Nurses and Family Nurse Practitioner are qualified to perform physical examinations, diagnose and treat illnesses. They can prescribe medications to patients. Often, they can have their own patients in a clinical environment.

Ranked: 10 Very Cheap Online Online Nursing Programs

Healthcare is a fast growing industry, affording excellent career opportunities. This ranking of affordable accredited nursing programs is a good first step in choosing where you want to study for your nursing degree. Consider carefully what you want to achieve before filing your application.

#1. Baker College Online

Baker College Online costs $205 per credit hour. Online classes have flexibility that physical classes lack, and Baker College Online provides that flexibility with classes that are available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Students can take part in interactive assignments with their peers. They can have private discussions with each other and their instructor. Baker College was founded in 1911 and is the largest college in the state of Michigan.

#2. Pima Medical Institute

Pima Medical Institute costs $250 per credit hour. Pima Medical Institute is located in Tucson, Arizona. It’s been delivering quality medical education since 1972. The online Bachelor of Science in Nursing program has classes to enhance and expand on the nurse’s education and abilities with advanced nursing classes. They offer lifetime job placement assistance and externships for qualified individuals. There are training programs that can assist the students who qualify.

#3. University of Texas at Arlington

University of Texas at Arlington offers credit courses at $255 per credit hour. Located in Arlington, Texas, UTA has a student population of 33,500. They offer both traditional and online education programs. The University of Texas at Arlington has College of Nursing and the College of Education and Health Professions courses and facilities that offer many classes and degree programs for nursing students to advance their careers.

#4. Grantham University

Grantham University has credit courses for $265 per credit hour. Located in Kansas, Missouri, they have been providing distance degree programs since 1951 and have an online university that doesn’t require any further training in a classroom. They supply a variety of accelerated programs while offering military and veteran scholarships. Their College of Nursing and Allied Health offers Bachelor of Science and Masters degree programs in Nursing.

#5. Western Governors University

Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, Western Governors University charges $270 per credit hour of online classes. Instead of focusing on credit hours, students must show competencies in required areas of study. It was established in 1997 by the governors of nineteen states and every single student is supplied with a mentor. Western Governors University is funded by foundations and corporations to provide support for the nationally and regionally accredited university. The nursing program is an accredited program by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

#6. Adventist University of Health Sciences

This university has be providing education in the healthcare field for 80 years. It offers online degree courses to provide students with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing degree in eighteen to twenty-four months of courses. Each course credit costs $300.

#7. Rasmussen College

Each credit costs $310. Rasmussen college has been providing a blended learning environment for its students for many years. It was founded 110 years ago in Minnetonka, MN. There are campuses in five states and the school has online classes for nursing as well as other students. Rasmussen College provides virtual tutoring free for online students. The School of Health Sciences provides entry level education for those entering the health field, but nurses requiring an advanced degree should attend the School of Nursing. They offer an RN to Bachelor in Nursing degree program.

#8. Colorado Technical University

Colorado Technical University College of Health Sciences offers credit courses at $305 per hour. They cater classes to providing an education in Nursing, Health Services Administration and Healthcare Management. There are accelerated programs that allow students to complete their degree requirements in eighteen months. The College of Business and Management provides courses in the business side of health management with healthcare concentrations as well as business, human resources and project management.

#9. Northeastern University

Founded in 1898 and located in Boston, MA, Northeastern University costs $325 per credit hour. They offer online undergraduate programs in Health and Healthcare Management, Nursing and Teaching. There are Bachelors, Masters and Doctoral degree programs as well. Online students have access to the school’s library system and assistance is supplied by academic and student support personnel. The class structure varies from other online universities. The same group of students will complete coursework together in a cohort class structure.

#10. South University

South University is located in Savannah, Georgia and has been offering education programs since 1899. The university charges students $380 per credit. It has accelerated courses so students can complete their education at a rapid pace. The online classes are small so students get individual attention. College of Nursing education program provides classes for nurses to achieve their Bachelors or Masters degree.

Before signing up for any college or university classes, it’s essential to research your choice based on your unique circumstances and financial situation. Most online universities and colleges have financial aid programs. Contact the school for more information.

The Top 10 Online Nursing Schools

nursing schoolsThe rapid growth of the nursing industry leads naturally to online nursing schools. Large public universities and small private colleges are offering some form of online nursing education. The most common form of online training offered involves already licensed nurses earning higher degrees online. There are only a limited number of schools that offer the online training designed to allow entry to the nursing field.

#1. Kaplan University

Kaplan University was originally established as the American Institute of Commerce in 1937. Today it is part of the Kaplan Higher Education Corporation, which is a subsidiary of Kaplan, Inc., which is itself a subsidiary of The Washington Post Company. Kaplan University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and has membership in the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Coursework for the Associate in Science nursing program is online, but the clinical and lab work is done in person. Students who earn or already possess an Associate in Science degree are able to continue their education online by enrolling in the RN to Bachelor of Science program. There is also a program online to earn the Master of Science degree. The total cost of completing the online two-year nursing program is $39,715-$44,267.

#2. Capella University

Founded in 1993 as The Graduate School of America, Capella University is a subsidiary of Capella Education Company. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Capella University is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Capella University offers RN to Bachelor of Science or Master of Science completion programs online.
There is also a Doctor of Nursing Practice program for students to earn their DNP. These programs are accredited by the CCNE or Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Tuition for the RN to BSN program begins at $290 per credit for lower level courses and increases to $305 for the upper level courses. Coursework for the MSN costs $361 an hour. The DNP is $816 per credit plus $1495 for residency.

#3. Indiana State University

Indiana State University officially opened in 1965, 100 years after the original school named Indiana State Normal School opened. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools since 1915, this university offers distance learning for the completion programs of RN to BSN and LPN to BSN. Indiana State Board of Nursing approves this program. There are a number of Masters programs and a Doctor of Nursing Practice program, all are available completely online. The semester cost for an in state student taking between 12-18 credits is $3,949 plus an additional fee of $30 per course taken online.

#4. Northwestern Michigan College

Northwestern Michigan College is one of the few places to obtain an online Associate’s Degree in Nursing. The program still requires a physical presence for clinical and lab courses. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Northwestern Michigan College is also a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Founded in 1951, the school offers completion programs for nurses but not online. The tuition ranges from in district students, to in state to out of state. In district students pay $84.60 per contact hour. online students pay $150 per hour.

#5. Old Dominion University

Old Dominion University offers RN to BSN or MSN completion courses completely online. The DNP is also web-based but requires weekend seminars on campus. Founded in 1930 as the Norfolk Division of the College of William and Mary, became independent in 1962. Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. $35,400 a year is the estimated cost for undergraduates.

#6. Chamberlain College of Nursing

Established in 1889 as Deaconess College of Nursing, it became Chamberlain College of Nursing after being purchased by DeVry Inc. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, the school is also a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Chamberlain College offers an Associate Degree program with all coursework online. The clinical work is completed in person. The school also offers a RN to BSN completion program online along with a RN to BSN to MSN online option. The Associate Degree program costs $655 per credit hour for the first six credits. The fee is $100 per credit hour above six. This is per session of the college.

#7. Walden University

Founded by two teachers in 1970, Walden University earned accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission in 1990. It is also a member of the North Central Association. Walden University offers an online RN to BSN that has CCNE accreditation. Students are able to earn credits through meeting competencies via a diploma or Associate Degree program. There is also an online Master of Science in Nursing program available. The fees for the online nursing completion program are $290 per quarter credit hour.

#8. University of Phoenix

Founded in 1976 by Dr. John Sperling, The University of Phoenix offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. The programs are LPN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing or RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing. A student here may also earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree. The RN to BSN completion program costs between $25,350-$50,895.

#9. Grand Canyon University

Established in 1949 as Grand Canyon College, the school transitioned to a university in 1989. Grand Canyon University is an accredited online university. The RN to BSN program is online as are a number of Master of Science in Nursing programs. The online program costs $465 a credit.

#10. MUST University

Billing itself as the largest university in the world, MUST maintains an international focus to their degree programs. It is the only degree program that allows the Associate Degree necessary for entry to the nursing occupation to be earned entirely online. All programs offered by MUST are accredited by the International Accreditation Organization. The AS degree in nursing program costs $7,800 in total. The school also offers a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in Nursing.

The 10 Leading Companies to Work for as a Nurse

nursing schoolsFortune magazine’s Best Companies to Work For list for 2011 included 12 different health care providers, not a surprising number considering the growing need for health care in the United States. In order to diagnose and treat patients, health care institutions must successfully recruit, satisfy, and retain the very best employees, most importantly registered nurses who have the most direct contact with patients. Those top employers in the field of health care have a few common aspects: low employee turn-over, highly rated employee benefits, and a culture that fosters appreciation and accountability. Here are the top 10 workplaces for nurses in the United States:

#10. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital appeared for the first time on this list, ranking 80 out of 100 companies. In spite of a slight dip in job growth, this hospital employed over 3,500 staff in 2011 with nearly 30,000 applicants. In addition to making a contribution to this renowned institution, staff members have paid sabbaticals, subsidized gym memberships, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities, but what sets this place of employment apart from other hospitals is the organic vegetables staff enjoy from an on-site garden and up to $3,600 tuition reimbursement.

#9. Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas

Moving up the list from its previous ranking of 85, Arkansas Children’s Hospital ranked 75 out of 100 companies in 2011. Employing over 3,750 staff, Arkansas Children’s Hospital had a 2 percent job growth for good reasons. As the only pediatric hospital in the state, this hospital is dedicated to its employees, providing them with onsite childcare, a 20,000-square-foot fitness gym, and a defined-benefit pension. The most common salaried and hourly positions at this care center are in the field of nursing, both averaging over $60,000 annually. Contributing to the work-life balance the hospital strives to create for its employees, Arkansas Children’s Hospital has a job sharing program, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities.

#8. OhioHealth in Columbus, Ohio

Although OhioHealth experienced a slight drop in ranking from the previous year’s list (moving from 46 to 62 out of 100), this institution has a lot to offer employees as its growth alone suggests. One year’s growth of 4 percent brought OhioHealth’s list of employees to over 12,500. The benefits and pay reflect OhioHeath’s esteemed position in the ranking; the most common salaried position is nurse manager, averaging over $100,000 annually, and the most common hourly position is staff RN, averaging more than $85,000 annually. OhioHealth also boasts a long list of perks: onsite child care, an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, telecommuting, and a compressed work week. Above and beyond these benefits, the hospital also offers free concierge service, health insurance for part-time employees, and 10 days of paid paternity leave.

#7. Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota

Just ahead of OhioHealth and ranked 61 out of 100 companies, Mayo Clinic also experienced a slight drop in ranking from the previous list (down from 55). In spite of slowed job growth (negative 1 percent for the year), Mayo Clinic still had nearly 38,000 applicants because of its reputation and positive culture. For example, the staff at Mayo gives back to the greater community, using vacation time, days off, nights, or weekends to help care for patients in underserved communities locally and abroad. Employee benefits at Mayo Clinic include onsite child care, an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities. Additionally, Mayo Clinic has a non-discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and offers domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples.

#6. Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta in Atlanta, Georgia

Moving from 74 in the previous year, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta beat out OhioHealth and Mayo Clinic for the 60 spot in 2011. Although this facility has experienced a dip in job growth, its dedication to children and families remains clear; they offer generous adoption and fertility benefits and pay a $1,040-a-year child care subsidy. These benefits are in addition to onsite child care, an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities. Registered nurses, the most common hourly position at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, make an average of more than $64,000 annually.

#5. Atlantic Health in Morristown, New Jersey

Racing through the ranks, Atlantic Health jumped from 81 the previous year to 54 out of 100 in 2011, thanks in part to generous pay and growing job growth. Nurses earn more than $84,000 on average annually, and the hospitals in this system provide onsite child care for employee’s children and grandchildren. In a single year, Atlantic Health had a 5 percent job growth, employing more than 7,000 people. Employees also have an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities. Like Mayo Clinic, Atlantic Health has a non-discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and offers domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples.

#4. Baptist Health South Florida in Coral Gables, Florida

In spite of a loss in the rankings (slipping to 42 from 32 out of 100), Baptist Health South Florida, south Florida’s largest private employer, is growing by leaps and bounds. In the past 2 years, the staff increased by 17 percent with the majority of new hires coming from employee referrals and more than 1,000 employees returning after working elsewhere. Applicant submissions also suggest that Baptist Health South Florida is creating a positive workplace: almost 150,000 people applied for 869 positions in a single year. Employee benefits include onsite child care, an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities.

#3. Scripp’s Health in San Diego, California

Investing in training and education (to the tune of $30 million in 2010) has paid off for Scripp’s Health, moving to 37 out of 100 in 2011. Every employee, from new hires to senior managers, participates in at least one learning program a year. The result of this programming is a knowledgeable, professional, and cohesive staff. Nurses earn over $110,000 annually on average, and employee benefits include onsite child care, an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities. Scripp’s Health also has a non-discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and offers domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples.

#2. Southern Ohio Medical Center in Portsmouth, Ohio

This rather small institution has soared through the rankings, rocketing from 63 to 36 out of 100, in part because of tremendous job growth and an appreciation of employees. With just over 2,000 employees, Southern Ohio Medical Center increased its ranks by nearly 20 percent in one year. These employees are valued and their ideas are respected; at their suggestion the medical center turned National Nurses Week into a community-service event, collecting funds for a local charity. Southern Ohio Medical Center offers an onsite fitness center, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities, as well as a non-discrimination policy that includes sexual orientation and domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples.

#1. The Methodist Hospital System in Houston, Texas

The Methodist Hospital System ranked 19 out of 100 companies in 2011 primarily for its exceedingly low staff turnover rate. More than 17 percent of the workforce had 15 or more years of service. Patients come from all over the world to be treated at the Methodist Hospital System, and the staff has a deserved sense of pride for their high reputation. Administrators have also found creative ways to combat burnout and show appreciation: nurses self-schedule, choosing from a variety of flexible scheduling options, and biannually the hospital honors about 20 employees with money or paid time off for exemplifying the hospital’s virtues. In addition, the Methodist Hospital System offers an onsite fitness center, subsidized gym memberships, job sharing, a compressed work week, and telecommuting opportunities.

These 10 institutions demonstrate that creative approaches to the work-life balance, positive climates, and a range of benefits foster success.

The Top 10 Scholarships for Nursing Students

nursing scholarshipsThe medical field is one or the fastest growing segments of the job market, and nursing is no exception. In order to help finance your degree many top nursing schools, corporations, and other organizations offer scholarships that pay part or all of your education costs.

These are the Top 10 nursing scholarships available and what you need to do to qualify for them.

#1. Tylenol Future Care Scholarship

The Future Care Scholarship form Tylenol is available to any health profession student who has completed at least one full semester at an accredited college, university, or vocational school. The scholarships are awarded based on academic performance, leaderships skills, and involvement in the community.

There are 10 $10,000 scholarships and 30 $5,000 scholarships available each year, and the deadline to apply is May 31 of each current school year.

#2. Medical Professionals of Tomorrow Scholarship

This company will award a $5,000 scholarship each year to the candidate who writes a winning 500+ word essay on why they are inspired to a career in the medical field.

Applicants must be enrolled full-time in an accredited two or four-year undergraduate program or graduate program, be a U.S. citizen or legal resident, and ‘like’ the company on Facebook or Google+, or follow them on Twitter. Deadline for application is December 31 of each current year for the following school year.

#3. The Mid-Atlantic Cardiovascular Foundation

The MACF awards five $5,000 scholarships each year to nursing students who intend to practice in a cardiovascular-related field of nursing in the state of Maryland upon graduation.

The scholarships are awarded to those students who display the qualities of compassion, leadership skills, and academic excellence. The deadline for application is May of the current school year for the following academic year.

#4. The Health Resources and Services Administration

This organization has three different scholarship programs available that will pay all tuition, fees, and other school expenses, plus a living allowance:

National Health Services Corps

This scholarship pays for all educational costs plus a tax-free monthly living allowance for primary-care nursing students bound entering certain fields of healthcare and who agree to work in an under-served area for an equivalent amount of time; for example, two years of schooling (minimum) equals a two-year commitment to service.

Nursing Scholarship Program

This is for students are who are attending or enrolled in an accredited RN certification program and who agree to serve for two years in an approved and understaffed healthcare facility after they graduate. The scholarship pays all educational costs and also provides a monthly living expense.

Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students

This is a competitive scholarship for students who come from a low-income or disadvantaged background as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau criteria. It pays for the full cost of schooling plus living expenses within reason.

#5. Cherokee Uniforms

In celebration of the release of their two documentaries entitled “A Nurse I Am,” Cherokee Uniforms is offering 10 $2,000 scholarships to students attending or enrolled in participating, accredited two or four-year nursing degree programs. Prospective recipients must see the films, write an essay based around one of the subjects of the films, ‘like’ the film’s Facebook page, and follow them on Twitter.

The competition starts in November 2012 for the 2013 academic year.

#6. Greta James Nursing Scholarship

This scholarship is open to high school seniors and undergraduates at any stage of their schooling. Candidates must write a 250 word essay answering the questions “What makes you a qualified candidate to receive this scholarship?” and “What made you decide to go into the field of nursing?”

The average award is $2,500, and will be given to two prospects per year. The winning essays are decided by an online vote of nursing professionals, and the deadline for entry is January 31.

#7. CampusRN Scholarship Fund

The Campus RN Scholarship Fund is a fairly new national program created to work in conjunction with the state funds administered by this program. It provides six $2,000 annual scholarships that are awarded regionally: Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, South Central, Mountain, and Pacific.

The scholarships are awarded to students who have been accepted to or attend an accredited nursing program at a registered school and are based on financial need and academic merit. The deadline to apply for these scholarships is April of the current year for the following academic year.

#8. Barbara Palo Foster Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship is from an endowment provided by the estate of Barbara Palo Foster, who died from cancer, and is administered by the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults. It is for students who have a parent or guardian who is either battling cancer or has died from cancer. The endowment provides one $1,000 scholarship per academic year to students who are entering into the nursing profession.

Aside from the above qualification, the scholarship is open to domestic or foreign students who are between the ages of 15 and 40 and are at least a senior in high school. The application deadline is April 1 of the current year for the following academic year.

#9. Minority Nurse Scholarship

The Minority Nurse Scholarship is for any ethnic minority student who is currently entered into an undergraduate nursing program at an accredited four-year college or university. The fund provides two $1,000 scholarships and one $3,000 scholarship annually, based on financial need.

Candidates must be in at least in their third year of college or in an accelerated Master’s degree preparation program, have a GPA of at least 3.0, be an ethnic minority, and a U.S. citizen or legal resident. Applicants must provide a copy of their transcript, a letter of recommendation from a faculty member, and a declaration of at least 250 words outlining their academic achievements, community service work, and future goals.

The deadline for application is February 1 of the current academic year for the following school year.

#10. William Foster Tichenor Tuition Scholarships

This fund provides a full scholarship each year to any student who has completed at least 30 hours of coursework in the field of nursing at an accredited two or four-year institution in the state of Kentucky. The Kentucky Community and Technical College System administers the fund, and it is based on financial need.

Applicants must be entering their third year, have a GPA of at least 2.5, and provide documentation of their financial need. In addition, they must provide a one page essay stating their commitment to the nursing profession and outlining their personal values.

The deadline for application is September of each academic year, and the number of awards is based on available funding.

The 10 Best Nursing Degree Programs

best nursing schoolsThe profession of nursing can provide an individual with personal satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment as they spend much of their career helping others. Nurses are in high demand all over the world and varied career opportunities make it easy to find the realm of nursing that provides a level of stability and personal fulfillment.

The helpful and extensive knowledge acquired through nursing school can be useful in everyday situations as well as throughout an individual’s nursing career. Online education provides flexible scheduling that allows a student to successfully balance education, work and family obligations.

Finding a quality nursing school is essential to obtaining the knowledge and skills needed to become a professional nurse and begin making a difference in other people’s lives.

#1. Chamberlain College of Nursing

The Associate Degree of Nursing program offers students with no prior nursing experience or education to obtain the basic fundamentals in nursing through a six-semester program. Students who continue on to the second year level of nursing studies have the opportunity to earn an associate’s degree in nursing and sit for the NCLEX-RN licensure examination. They also offer Bachelor of Science in Nursing as well as Master of Science in Nursing for those already in the nursing profession. Accreditation includes The Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), and National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC). Tuition costs for the first six credits are $665 per credit hour and $100 per credit hour after earning seven credits and above. Admission requirements include a completed application submitted along with the application fee, previous transcripts if applicable and an interview with a counselor.

#2. Capella University

The RN to BSN program offers registered nurses the chance to receive credit completion based on their work experience. Accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), Capella University offers online courses lasting from 10 to 12 weeks in length. Lower level credit hours average $290 and higher level courses are $305 per credit hour. Financial aid is available for qualified students. BSN requirements include previous diploma or associate’s degree in nursing and a 2.3 cumulative GPA from an accredited institution. Graduate studies in nursing require a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

#3. Keiser University

Keiser University offers an undergraduate RN to BSN program as well as a graduate MSN program. Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, potential students can apply completely online and a placement test is required for all students. Classes start each month and are taken one at a time. Online students have access to student services that are available 24/7 to answer any questions and concerns. Tuition rates are determined based on level of program study and can be discussed with an admissions counselor after applying online.

#4. Western Governors University

Bachelor’s and master’s degree programs have earned accreditation by the CCNE and offer several areas of nursing degrees including health informatics, education and leadership and management. Admissions for undergraduate programs include applicable transcripts from previous schools, high school diploma or GED and an interview with a school counselor to determine if the school is a good fit for the potential student. Unlike other online nursing schools, WGU offers a flat tuition rate per six month term. The average tuition per term is $2,890. Although time of completion may vary, programs typically take 18 months to complete.

#5. Walden University

Walden University’s School of Nursing offers individual courses in healthcare, certificate programs, bachelor’s and master’s in nursing programs and also a doctoral program for experienced nurses. Also accredited by CCNE, tuition ranges from $280 to $760 per credit hour depending on the program. Admission requirements include a completed online application, application fee, a list of transferrable credits from other colleges attended, official transcripts and employment history.

#6. Grand Canyon University

Classes at Grand Canyon University are offered one at a time to ensure students get a solid grasp of the presented material. Nursing courses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Class sizes are small to allow personalized learning and each nursing course equals four credits. RN to BSN program tuition averages about $28,450 with financial aid options available for students who qualify. Books and supplies are not included and average about $1,600. An application for admission must be submitted and an admissions counselor will contact the student with information on the next step towards enrollment.

#7. Colorado Technical University

The associate degree in nursing program requires applicants to successfully complete entrance testing, complete a drug screening and background check with negative results and show proof of a GPA of 2.75 from high school or previous college transcripts. The RN to BSN program tuition rates average $27,755 total cost with a $50 application fee. CTU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is also a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

#8. South University

South University, accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and the CCNE, offers graduate nursing studies online for those seeking higher learning opportunities in areas such as administration, education and nurse practitioner. Interested individuals must request information and speak with an admissions representative before applying. The representative will walk the potential student through the application process and determine if the school is right for the individual and their needs. Tuition rates depend on the type of nursing degree and can average from $391 to $436 per credit hour.

#9. Kaplan University

Associate’s degrees in nursing include online coursework and clinical experience at designated sites to prepare for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). To be considered for admission, an applicant must have a high school diploma or GED. The BSN program offers a tuition rate of $315 per credit hour with a minimum of 90 credit hours from an associate’s degree. Kaplan University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) with nursing programs accredited by the CCNE.

#10. University of Phoenix College of Nursing

One of the largest accredited universities in the United States, University of Phoenix College of Nursing offers many programs for working nurses to obtain further education and pursue their personal goals in nursing. Programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and are offered online and at select campus locations. Classes are typically five to six weeks in duration and are taken one at a time to allow in-depth understanding of the class material. Undergraduate programs include the LPN/LVN to BSN and RN to BSN. Nurses who want to pursue a graduate degree can choose from several MSN programs and those with a master’s in nursing can enhance their career with a Ph.D. in nursing. For undergraduate nursing programs, admission requirements include a high school diploma or GED, valid LPN/LVN license, signed Criminal Background Check Disclosure and proof of legal citizenship or permanent residency. Graduate program requirements include an undergraduate degree in nursing, valid RN license, legal citizenship or permanent residency and a grade point average of at least 2.5 on their undergraduate transcript.