9+ Best Online RN to MSN Programs

by Brittney Wilson RN BSN, NurseJournal.org   

Nursing is a wonderful career for those people who truly want to make a difference in the lives and well-being of others. It is not a job for everybody, but those that truly have a passion for health and serving their community can enjoy a diverse job where no two days are the same, and be rewarded with a very decent salary. In terms of salary, the BLS has reported that there will be a growth of 19 percent by 2022, which means that it will see a higher than average growth.

There is a strong need for nurses across all communities in our country. We face an aging population and there are numerous conditions that are becoming increasingly common, such as osteoarthritis, diabetes and obesity. Because of this, there is a need for a wide range of specialized nursing care.

Very often, people study towards becoming an RN (registered nurse) and enter the workforce. However, after a while, they want to improve their knowledge and career prospects and wish to achieve a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) degree. This requires more studying time, which is something not everybody is able to invest in. However, various online RN to BSN programs are now available as well, which means that it becomes possible to study and work at the same time. It is very important to only study with an top online program that is accredited and that has a very good reputation.

Let’s take a look at the 9+ best online RN to MSN programs out there.

1. Capella University

200x100_capella-universityHighly Recommended & 100% Online! Founded in 1918, Ball State University is based in Muncie, Indiana. It currently enrolls some 21,000 students every year in a range of different degree programs and academic colleges. The university is an Up-and-Coming university, ranked 8th in the country. Their online RN to BSN program can be completed fully online, although some clinical training hours are also required.

Campus: Online
Type: Private, For-Profit
Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Per Credit Hour: Inquire
GRE Required: No
Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
On Campus Requirements: No
Programs:  MSN – RN-to-MSN Nursing, General (CCNE-accredited), MSN – RN-to-MSN Nursing Informatics (CCNE-accredited
Request Information Direct: Capella University

2. South University

200x100_south-university-campusHighly Recommended & 100% Online! As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Campus: Online
Type: Private, For-Profit
Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Per Credit Hour: Inquire
GRE Required: No
Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
On Campus Requirements: No
Programs: RN to MSN with specialization in Nurse Administrator (MSN), RN to MSN with specialization in Adult Health Nurse Practitioner(MSN), RN to MSN with specialization in Family Nurse Practitioner (MSN), RN to MSN with specialization in Nurse Educator (MSN)
Request Information Direct: Chamberlain College of Nursing

3. Chamberlain College of Nursing

chamberlain-college-nursingHighly Recommended & 100% Fully Online! Courses at Chamberlain are designed for experienced nurses looking for a RN to MSN nursing program to expand and enrich their professional careers. Application to real-world scenarios is emphasized through coursework, class discussions and the practicum experience. Chamberlain students enter into in one of five specialty tracks: Executive, Educator, Family Nurse Practitioner, Informatics or Healthcare Policy. Graduates of the online MSN program are prepared to sit for national certification in their chosen specialty.

Campus: Online
Type: Private, For-Profit
Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Per Credit Hour: Inquire
GRE Required: No
Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
On Campus Requirements: No
Programs: RN t0 MSN Online, Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), MSN – Family Nurse Practitioner, MSN – Nurse Educator, MSN – Nurse Executive, MSN – FNP, MSN – Nursing Informatics, MSN – Healthcare Policy.
Request Information Direct: Chamberlain College of Nursing

4. University of Cincinnati

  • Campus: Cincinnati, Online
  • Type: Non Profit
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Per Credit Hour: Inquire
  • GRE/GMAT Required: No
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On Campus Requirements: No
  • Programs Offered: Master of Science in Nursing – Nursing Administration, Master of Science in Nursing – Adult-Gero Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Master of Science in Nursing – Nurse-Midwifery
  • Request Information Direct: University of Cincinnati Online

5. University of Wisconsin-Superior

The University of Wisconsin-Superior was founded in 1893 as a teacher’s college. Later, it amalgamated with the University of Wisconsin and now enrolls over 2,400 students every year in a variety of degrees. Students set their own pace in the online program so they can study around their current work schedule. Flexible payment arrangements are offered as well as financial aid to cover the cost of tuition fees.

Location: Superior, Wisconsin
Type: Public
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission of North Central Association of Schools and Colleges
Tuition: $36,600
Degree Requirements: A number of general education requirements and elective requirements are in place. Students must earn 124 credits to complete the program, although transferable credits are also accepted.
School Site: Visit School

6. Fort Hays State University

Based in Hays, Kansas, the Fort Hays State University offers a huge range of online programs. Indeed, it has some 13,000 students at present across its 28 academic departments. Additionally, 8,600 students are enrolled in online programs with the university. Founded in 1902, the university’s goal has always been to provide opportunity to students who know what they want. The school also prides itself in its affordable tuition fees.

Location: Hays, Kansas
Type: Entrepreneurial
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges of Schools, Academic Quality Improvement Program and Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
Tuition: $21,039
Degree Requirements: Only those RNs who have maintained a GPA of 2.50 are accepted. Steady advancement has to be shown and they must partake in at least 30 hours of nursing classes, as well as an internship.
School Site: Visit School

7. Bellevue University

Bellevue University, a private, non-profit institution, was founded in 1966. Since then, it boasts of some 10,000 yearly students and three different campuses as well as an online program. Nationwide, this university is listed on the top 20 of colleges offering online programs. The RN to BSN courses focus specifically on professional development, leadership and social issues.

Location: Bellevue, Nebraska
Type: Private, non-profit
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Tuition: $46,990
Degree Requirements: 127 credits must be earned, of which 36 must be core nursing courses. Those who hold an RN can transfer 60 credits and work experience can also be included.
School Site: Visit School

8. American Public University System

This private, for-profit learning institution was founded in 1991 by James P. Etter, retired Marine Corps Major. When founded, the courses were specifically designed for those in military professions. However, it has since expanded to offering professional courses as well as the military ones and it has opened its doors to both military and civilian people. The online RN to BSN program is designed for those who currently hold an ASN, RN or have active licensing as a nurse. Financial aid is available for students and there is a full TCE waiver for those people who are currently an active military member, regardless of their position.

Location: Charles Town, West Virginia
Type: Private, for-profit
Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
Tuition: $30,250
Degree Requirements: 121 hours of coursework must be completed. Credits can be transferred through previous degrees and work experience.
School Site: Visit School

9. Ball State University

Founded in 1918, Ball State University is based in Muncie, Indiana. It currently enrolls some 21,000 students every year in a range of different degree programs and academic colleges. The university is an Up-and-Coming university, ranked 8th in the country. Their online RN to BSN program can be completed fully online, although some clinical training hours are also required.

Location: Muncie, Indiana
Type: Research institution
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and National League for Nursing Center of Excellence
Tuition: $59,120
Degree Requirements: 31 credits in core classes, 39 credits in nursing prerequisites, 20 credits in nursing courses. This can be completed across 3 or 6 semesters.
School Site: Visit School

10. Western Carolina University

The Western Carolina University was founded in 1889. Some 10,000 students attend this university, and they come from 35 different countries and 48 states. Furthermore, their curriculum includes over 120 different specialties. They have been recognized as one of the country’s most environmentally responsible universities as well, which can be seen across its campus and overall focus. The online RN to BSN program focuses mainly on leadership capabilities.

Location: Cullowhee, North Carolina
Type: Public
Accreditation: Commission on Colleges through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and North Carolina Board of Nursing
Tuition: $58,622
Degree Requirements: 24 credits on core courses, fully online. 8 credits of online elective courses. 2 clinical course rotations.
School Site: Visit School



About the Author

Brittney Wilson RN BSN
Brittney Wilson RN BSN /

Brittney Wilson, RN, BSN, also known as The Nerdy Nurse, is a Clinical Informatics Specialist practicing in Georgia. In her day job she gets to do what she loves every day: Combine technology and healthcare to improve patient outcomes. She joined NurseJournal.org to help connect with other nurses in Informatics and educate those considering the field for the first time. Connect with me on Google+

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