The Best Online BSN Programs in 2021

by NurseJournal Staff

Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?

Whether you’re looking to get your pre-licensure degree or taking the next step in your career, the education you need could be more affordable than you think. Find the right nursing program for you.
The Best Online BSN Programs in 2021

Individuals interested in beginning a career in nursing often choose to obtain a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree and become a registered nurse (RN). RNs fulfill an essential role within the healthcare ecosystem and make a real difference in people's lives every day.

Online BSN Program Overview

We use our data-driven methodology to rank the best online BSN programs, making it easier for you to find the program that best aligns with your personal and professional goals. Our methodology considers metrics that we believe matter most to students, including academic quality, affordability, reputation, program offerings, and online flexibility.

Top 10 Online BSN Programs in 2021

Featured Online Programs

What Can You Do With a BSN?

Many students pursue BSN degrees online to become RNs or concentrate in specific nursing fields. Some learners complete a bachelor's degree on the path to earning a master of science in nursing (MSN) degree.

Nurses sometimes earn RN licensure with an associate degree in nursing (ADN), but they can also complete an RN-to-BSN bridge program to increase their job prospects and salary potential. Common nursing roles include:

diploma, adn, or bsn Required

Registered Nurse

RNs perform diagnostic tests and measure patients' vital signs; educate patients about illnesses or diseases; and assist physicians.
Salary $52,080-$111,220*
Job Outlook 7% increase from 2019-2029
Learn More About Registered Nurses
bsn Required

School Nurse

School nurses oversee healthcare services at schools, providing basic care to students with chronic conditions, illnesses, and injuries. They also educate students about living healthy lifestyles.
Salary $48,330*
Job Outlook 7% increase from 2019-2029
Learn More About School Nurses
adn or bsn Required

Emergency Room Nurse

ER nurses help treat patients in critical condition, whether due to a life-threatening illness or injuries. They carry out triage, administer treatments, assist ER doctors, and monitor vital signs.
Salary $65,410*
Job Outlook 7% increase from 2019-2029
Learn More About Emergency Room Nurses
*SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What to Look for in a Online BSN Program

Prospective BSN enrollees should research schools to identify which programs best align with their professional aspirations. Key considerations include:

Admission Requirements
Check the admission requirements at your prospective college or university to ensure that you qualify for the BSN program.
Program Curriculum
Each school sets a distinct BSN curriculum. Check that the courses align with your career goals, especially if you want to specialize in a niche area of nursing.
Clinical Experience
All BSN programs require supervised clinical experience. However, the required hours, location, and format vary for each school. Some online programs allow students to set up clinicals in their local areas.
Accreditation
Accreditation agencies evaluate schools and programs to ensure they thoroughly prepare students for their careers. If you want a quality education with better job prospects and the option to attend graduate school, prioritize accredited programs.
School NCLEX Pass Rate
Every aspiring nurse must pass the NCLEX to qualify for state RN licensure. Therefore, a program's NCLEX pass rate indicates how well a program prepares its enrollees for the field.
Online Learning Format and Requirements
Confirm that you meet any technology requirements for online programs. Even if you own a computer with internet access at home, you may need to download other software to stream lectures and communicate with your classmates.

Applying to a Online BSN Program

Stand out among the competition by submitting thoughtful applications that demonstrate your potential to learn and succeed. Always make sure to research each program's admission requirements. Nursing schools typically require:

  • Admission Requirements: An applicant generally must submit a high school diploma, high school transcripts, CV or resume, admission essay, ACT or SAT scores, and recommendation letters.
  • Program Length: Full-time students typically take four years. Accelerated and bridge programs can take just 2-3 years.
  • Clinical Requirements: Each enrollee must typically complete 300-700 hours.
  • GPA Requirement: Schools typically require GPAs in the 2.5-3.0 range.
  • Other Requirements: Some programs include a virtual interview. An Online RN-to-BSN program requires each applicant to possess an ADN and RN licensure before applying.

Why is Online BSN Program Accreditation Important?

Accreditation ensures that colleges and universities provide students with a high-quality education. Reasons for attending an accredited program include:

  • Unaccredited school credits may not transfer to other schools
  • Many graduate programs specify an accredited degree as an admission requirement
  • You may not qualify for federal financial aid at an unaccredited institution
  • Employers typically prefer applicants with accredited degrees
  • States sometimes require RN candidates to graduate from accredited institutions to qualify for licensure

Who Accredits Online BSN Programs?

Programs and institutions receive accreditation from different agencies. Key accrediting bodies for nursing programs and institutions include:

How Do I Know an Online BSN Program is Accredited?

The accreditation process operates the same way for online BSN programs as on-campus degrees. Many colleges list their accreditation status on their websites. If you can't find any information about a program's accreditation, reach out to the school with an email or phone call.

Prospective students can also contact the accrediting bodies themselves. All of the schools listed on this page and NurseJournal.org hold accreditation.

Paying for Online BSN Programs

Many factors affect the cost of an online BSN program. In addition to the sticker price of tuition, students must consider lab and clinical costs, program length, in-state vs. out-of-state tuition differences, and whether they can continue working while enrolled.

Students can find several financial aid opportunities to help them cover these costs, including scholarships, student loans, grants, and work-study options. Distance learners can also apply to outside scholarships sponsored by companies, community organizations, and nonprofit groups. Aspiring nurses can apply to scholarships for online learners or students in healthcare fields.

Learn More About the Top Online BSN Programs & Schools

University of Florida-Online true View School Profile $$ Gainesville, FL 88% 27% 100% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

UF's RN-to-BSN online program prepares RNs for career advancement or graduate nursing education. The university's entirely online curriculum teaches the analytical, leadership, and management skills required to deliver high-quality care. Health assessment and public health courses include clinical components, which enrollees can complete online or in their local communities. Graduates emerge trained for BSN-level positions as clinical nurse specialists or in ICU, OB/GYN, surgical, pediatric, or school nursing.

Distance learners who reside in Florida receive a significant discount on tuition. Online students can access financial aid, IT support, and counseling services.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
  • Campus: Gainesville, Florida
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $129 per credit in-state; $553 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing from an accredited program; minimum 2.8 GPA in nursing courses; current, unencumbered Florida or Nurse Licensure Compact RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 48 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 96%
University of Central Florida true View School Profile $$ Orlando, FL 73% 39% 57% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

The online BSN program at UCF leads to a post-RN-licensure bachelor's degree. Its 30-credit core curriculum emphasizes science and leadership, along with preparation for graduate nursing studies.

Distance learners can accelerate their studies or take one course per semester. Coursework explores dimensions of professional practice; public and community health nursing; health promotion across the lifespan; and leadership, management, and role development. The plan of study includes a community and public health practicum, which students can complete in their local communities.

Florida residents pay far less tuition than non-residents. UCF offers more than $200,000 in nursing scholarships to eligible applicants.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Orlando, Florida
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $179 per credit in-state; $716 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Minimum 2.8 GPA; RN license; resident of Florida or Nurse Licensure Compact state; associate degree, bachelor's degree or equivalent; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: Three semesters
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 97%
Ohio State University-Main Campus true View School Profile $$$ Columbus, OH 84% 38% 33% Higher Learning Commission

Description:

Ohio State's online BSN degree offers a degree-completion pathway for registered nurses. Distance learners apply existing credits earned in their associate degree in nursing or nursing diploma program toward their bachelor of science in nursing degree. Enrollees must previously have earned their degree from a school accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

Students admitted to the 30-credit core course program can opt for a 12-month or 15-month curriculum. Required courses include foundations and contemporary issues for registered nurses, cultural competence in healthcare, concepts in community health nursing, and evolving concepts in leadership and management.

Students completing the program online can expect to pay in-state tuition rates regardless of residency.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
  • Campus: Columbus, Ohio
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Higher Learning Commission (HLC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $382 per credit
  • Admission Requirements: Associate degree or diploma in nursing; minimum 2.0 GPA; current, unrestricted RN license; prerequisite coursework
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid
The University of Alabama true View School Profile $$$$ Tuscaloosa, AL 72% 39% 39% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

UA's online RN-to-BSN program allows registered nurses to study fully online while continuing to work. The curriculum includes university core requirements and student-arranged clinical practicums. These experiences fulfill community health course requirements for RNs and individuals interested in pursuing leadership and management roles.

UA accepts approved transfer credits. Additional classes include nursing informatics, complex client systems, and inquiry for evidence-based practice.

The distance learning tuition rate does not vary by residency. Remote learners can apply for scholarships and financial aid. Coursework uses the Blackboard online platform for video-streamed lectures and interaction with professors and students.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $375 per credit
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing or nursing diploma from an Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing-accredited nursing school; minimum 2.5 undergraduate GPA (2.0 in science courses); unencumbered RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: Three semesters
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 98%
Florida International University true View School Profile $ Miami, FL 58% 34% 65% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

FIU's online RN-to-BSN program creates opportunities for nurses to advance their careers and expand their skills. With coursework in community health, nursing leadership in global healthcare, and health, wellness, and care across cultures, the BSN degree program provides the foundation in evidence-based nursing practice.

Distance learners can pursue their degree through full- or part-time enrollment. FIU accepts a minimum of 60 lower-division transfer credits. Students complete their classes fully online and arrange onsite clinical placements during their final semester.

Before beginning their placements, nurses submit background checks, health information, proof of liability insurance, and signed agreements with their clinical preceptors.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Miami, Florida
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $229 per credit in-state; $346 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing or nursing diploma from an Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing-accredited nursing school; minimum 2.7 undergraduate GPA; unencumbered Florida RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: Three semesters
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 93%
Appalachian State University View School Profile $$ Boone, NC 72% 48% 20% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

Appalachian offers a 30-credit, part-time RN-to-BSN. Nursing online students graduate prepared for advanced studies or career enhancement. Appalachian's cohort-structured program features entirely online coursework and includes project-based and research-based clinical experiences within each course.

Enrollees typically complete the clinical components at their places of employment. Core requirements include nursing informatics, concepts of professional nursing, and nursing care of older adults. Professional nursing synthesis, an evidence-based research course, occurs during the final semester.

Admitted students work with assigned advisors and interact with faculty members through virtual appointments or office hours. Distance learners attend a mandatory online orientation session.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Boone, North Carolina
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $163 per credit in-state; $663 out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Applied science or associate degree in nursing or nursing diploma; minimum 2.5 GPA; unrestricted, unencumbered RN license issued in North Carolina or a Nurse Licensure Compact state; 60 hours of lower-division coursework and 30 hours of major nursing courses
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 100%
Texas A & M University-College Station View School Profile $$$ College Station, TX 82% 32% 8% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

As one of the leading Texas online BSN programs, Texas A&M's RN-to-BSN allows distance learners to balance their education with their careers and other obligations. Students complete the 30-credit core course load online, except for a required new student conference held on campus over two days. Enrollees log their clinical practicum hours at sites in their own communities.

Depending on the program start date, completion options span 3-5 semesters. Course topics include nursing dimensions and informatics, health promotion across the lifespan, pathophysiology and pharmacology, and community health.

The online learning platform features interactive resources like wikis, blogs, and other communication tools. Students can access technical help 24/7.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: College Station, Texas
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $12,000 per year in-state; $39,000 per year out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing; minimum 3.0 GPA recommended; unencumbered RN license; 59 prerequisite course credits in humanities and sciences
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 99%
Pennsylvania State University-World Campus View School Profile $$$$ University Park, PA 71% 48% 100% Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Description:

Offered by Penn State's World Campus, the RN-to-BSN online program focuses on nursing theory, clinical skill development, and career marketability. Asynchronous learning provides flexibility and combines self-study with peer-to-peer interaction.

Each enrollee can choose to earn a specialty certificate in nursing management, nursing informatics, or nursing forensics. The program culminates with a 45-hour clinical experience as part of a capstone course.

Students can transfer qualifying credits but must earn 36 of the final 60 credits at Penn State. Distance learners may opt for accelerated courses. Graduates of the accredited online BSN program often move into supervisory nursing roles or pursue further education at the master's or doctoral level.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: University Park, Pennsylvania
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $576-617 per credit, based on credit load
    • Admission Requirements: High school diploma or GED certificate; active RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 93%
University of Massachusetts-Amherst View School Profile $$$$ Amherst, MA 80% 56% 21% New England Commission on Higher Education

Description:

UMass Amherst's RN-to-BSN online program emphasizes culturally relevant care for underserved populations, collaboration, and professionalism. Distance learners can earn their degree at UMass while working full time in 1-2-year pathways with asynchronous course instruction and 24/7 technical support.

The program accepts approved transfer credits and works with students to tailor their study plans to their needs. Courses include nursing care of families, cultural diversity in health and illness, health and physical assessment, and writing in nursing ethics.

The curriculum also includes clinical practicum hours working with vulnerable and underserved populations. Online students pay the same tuition regardless of their location.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Amherst, Massachusetts
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): New England Commission on Higher Education (NECHE); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $585 per credit
    • Admission Requirements: Minimum 2.5 GPA; current RN license; completion of 52 out of 60 non-nursing credits and seven nursing prerequisite courses
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 89%
Farmingdale State College View School Profile $ Farmingdale, NY 50% 30% 23% Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Description:

A nurse interested in earning a BSN degree online should consider the RN-to-BSN completion program at Farmingdale. As a part of the State University of New York system, the program balances general education with nurse training. Clinical experiences complement the program's virtual course delivery to prepare bachelor's-level nurses.

Courses include the art of nursing, developing nurses' ways of knowing, health promotion and patient education, and the nurse as an advocate and change agent.

Admitted students can transfer a minimum of 30 nursing credits and 20 liberal arts and science credits with departmental approval. New York residents pay less than half of the tuition of non-residents.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Farmingdale, New York
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $295 per credit in-state; $708 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing from an accredited program; minimum 3.0 GPA; current, unencumbered RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 96%
Clemson University View School Profile $$$ Clemson, SC 83% 39% 26% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

Clemson's BSN degree programs include an online RN-to-BSN completion track that students can finish at an accelerated pace or on a part-time basis. The program's 125 credits and prerequisites can consist of transfer credits, credit by examination, and/or Clemson course enrollment.

Coursework covers healthcare genetics, pathophysiology for healthcare professionals, scientific writing and communication, family nursing in the community, and mental health nursing. Clinical experiences occur within specific courses.

Admission is competitive, and each applicant should have earned at least 30 transferable credits. While Clemson offers the program entirely online, admitted students must attend a one-day orientation session on campus.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Clemson, South Carolina
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $550 per credit
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree in nursing from an accredited program; minimum 2.75 GPA, current, unrestricted RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 98%
University of North Carolina Wilmington View School Profile $$$ Wilmington, NC 73% 46% 47% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

The accredited online BSN program at UNCW focuses on community health nursing, contemporary issues affecting nursing practice, gerontological nursing, and management and leadership. The accelerated 29-credit core course curriculum for RNs includes clinical application of therapeutic nutrition; maternal-infant nursing; and issues, trends, and health policy in nursing.

Studies culminate in a precepted clinical nursing capstone that facilitates the transition to professional practice. Distance learners complete additional clinical experiences during select courses and must earn at least 30 credits at UNCW.

Applicants under 24 years of age should contact an enrollment specialist, as additional rules may apply. In-state enrollees pay lower tuition than out-of-state students.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Wilmington, North Carolina
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $169 per credit in-state; $644 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree or diploma in nursing; minimum 2.5 GPA; current, unencumbered RN license; minimum 24 credits of transferable prerequisites
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 95%
James Madison University View School Profile $$$ Harrisonburg, VA 84% 38% 8% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

JMU offers an asynchronous, fully online, cohort-based RN-to-BSN degree that builds a foundation for bachelor's-level practice or advanced nursing studies. Distance learners can select between one-year or two-year completion plans.

Emphasizing underserved, culturally diverse, and rural communities, the 30-credit core curriculum includes a caring for the public's health: community health nursing class and a mentored community health practicum at local clinical sites. Other classes explore concepts in aging, health assessment, healthcare informatics, and nursing research.

Applicants should have logged six months of employment as RNs or plan to work as RNs during their enrollment.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
  • Campus: Harrisonburg, Virginia
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $7,250 per year in-state; $24,150 per year out-of-state
  • Admission Requirements: Associate degree or diploma in nursing from an accredited program; minimum 2.5 GPA; current, unrestricted RN license; prerequisite coursework
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid
Florida Atlantic University View School Profile $ Boca Raton, FL 52% 35% 44% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

An online student pursuing an RN-to-BSN degree at FAU earns 32 credits with the university and transfers 28 validated credits from their Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing-accredited nursing programs. Learners can choose from multiple plans of study that best fit their work schedules and responsibilities.

The curriculum includes courses in legal and ethical perspectives in nursing, design of caring environments, population health, and a nursing practice immersion that comprises 180 clinical hours in community settings near students' residences. FAU also offers clinical immersions in Oklahoma to provide care for Native Americans.

In-state students at FAU pay significantly lower tuition rates than out-of-state learners.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Boca Raton, Florida
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $201 per credit in-state; $720 per credit out-of-state
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree or diploma in nursing; minimum 2.5 GPA; current, unencumbered RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: Three semesters
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 92%
University of North Florida View School Profile $$ Jacksonville, FL 59% 34% 52% Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Description:

Qualified distance learners from anywhere in the U.S. can join online cohorts in UNF's RN-to-BSN bridge program. Tuition costs the same for all students, regardless of location.

The curriculum stems from a strong scientific base with opportunities to provide nursing care to vulnerable and underserved populations. Enrollees can complete their fully online classes in three semesters, including community agency experiences in their local areas.

Student-selected experiences typically take place at homeless shelters, refugee resettlement programs, healthcare facilities, and nonprofit organizations. Remote learners receive full online access to student services like advising, success coaching, technical support, and library services.

Details:

  • Program(s): Bachelor of science in nursing - RN-to-BSN
    • Campus: Jacksonville, Florida
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation(s): Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC); Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    • Tuition: $285 per credit
    • Admission Requirements: Associate degree or diploma in nursing from an accredited program; minimum 2.8 GPA; active RN license; prerequisite coursework
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 12 months
    • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 96%

Online BSN Program FAQs


Are a BSN and an RN the same thing?

No. A BSN refers to a "bachelor of science in nursing" — the college degree that many nurses complete before beginning their careers. RN refers to a "registered nurse," which is an occupation. The two are related, however, since many nurses earn BSNs to become RNs.

Can you get a BSN online?

Yes. Many colleges offer BSN degrees through distance learning. These programs include online lectures and classes, but students typically still complete practical lab requirements and supervised clinical rounds in person. Some schools offer hybrid programs, which combine online and on-campus classes.

Can I get a BSN without being an RN?

Yes. Although some licensed RNs enroll in RN-to-BSN programs, most aspiring nurses pursue their BSNs before earning RN licensure. Many students pursue BSNs to become RNs or obtain RN licensure before applying to master's programs in nursing.

Is it hard to get your BSN online?

When it comes to course material, online BSN programs share the same difficulty as on-campus programs. However, distance learners need motivation and self-discipline to set structured study schedules and follow through with course requirements.

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