The Best Online LPN-to-BSN Programs of 2022

February 25, 2022 , Modified on May 9, 2022 · 5 Min Read

LPN-to-BSN bridge programs make it easy for nurses to advance their careers. Read on to explore the benefits of online LPN-to-BSN programs.

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The Best Online LPN-to-BSN Programs of 2022
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Due in part to an aging population, nurses are in high demand. Now is a great time for licensed practical nurses (LPNs) to earn a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) through an online LPN-to-BSN program. A BSN can lead to increased earning potential and more employment opportunities.

Read on to find out more about online LPN-to-BSN programs, including the application process, what to look for in an online program, and how to pay for your degree.

We use a data-driven methodology to rank the best online LPN-to-BSN programs, making it easier for you to find a program that works for you. Our methodology is based on metrics that we believe matter most to students, including academic quality, affordability, reputation, and program offerings.

Keep reading to learn more about LPN-to-BSN programs, or go straight to our list of the best online LPN-to-BSN programs.

What Can You Do With a BSN?

Nurses with a BSN work as registered nurses (RNs) in many settings, including hospitals, medical centers, outpatient facilities, and private practices. They record medical histories, assess and monitor patients' conditions, conduct tests, and analyze results.

LPNs who earn a BSN can increase their earning potential and take on specialized nursing roles, including:

Labor and Delivery Nurse

Labor and delivery nurses assess patients in triage for preterm labor, active labor, and other pregnancy issues. They also perform maternal physical assessments and educate patients on medications, labor, and postpartum care. The average salary for labor and delivery nurses is $68,170 according to Payscale data from December 2021.

  • Salary: $68,170

Learn more about Labor and Delivery Nurses

Oncology Nurse

Oncology nurses work with cancer patients and individuals who are in remission. These nurses assess patients' physical and emotional states, document and coordinate treatments, administer medication, and educate patients and their families. According to Payscale data from December 2021, oncology nurses enjoyed an average yearly salary of $76,350.

  • Salary: $76,350

Learn more about Oncology Nurses

Geriatric Nurse

Geriatric nurses treat elderly patients facing physical and mental issues. They assess patients' cognitive thinking abilities, provide education on disease prevention, and arrange access to appropriate medical resources. As of December 2021, geriatric nurses make an annual average salary of $69,120.

  • Salary: $69,120

Learn more about Geriatric Nurses

Featured Online RN to BSN Programs

What to Look for in an Online LPN-to-BSN Program

An online LPN-to-BSN program should fit your career goals, budget, and schedule. Be sure to consider factors like admission requirements, specialization options, and graduation rates as you explore your options.

Although each school maintains slightly different admission requirements, most expect applicants to hold a valid LPN license and a certain amount of professional experience. While many curricula include similar core classes, some programs offer elective courses or concentrations that can help you decide on or develop a nursing specialty. Clinicals provide hands-on experience and let nursing students explore multiple specializations. Many schools allow distance learners to complete their clinical experience at a location near the student's home. However, some programs require online students to travel, or to fulfill in-person components at a specific facility. It is important to attend an accredited program. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) evaluate nursing programs to ensure that they meet quality standards. Candidates who attend unaccredited programs may face limited academic, financial, and employment opportunities. Many factors can influence a program's length, including its format, curriculum, and whether the student enrolls on a full- or part-time basis. Most learners can complete an online BSN program in 2-3 years, although graduation times vary according to the individual student's course load. A program's National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) pass rate indicates how prepared graduates are to seek licensure. The ACEN and the CCNE use first-time student pass rates to determine if a program should maintain accreditation. Graduation rates offer insight into how well a school supports its students and how satisfied candidates are with an institution in general. High graduation rates indicate that students are pleased with a college or university. Some online programs require students to attend synchronous classes that meet online at set times. Others feature asynchronous courses that allow learners to access class materials and review recorded lectures at their convenience. While synchronous programs tend to offer more structure and support, asynchronous options let candidates graduate faster.

Applying to an Online LPN-to-BSN Program

Before you apply to an online BSN program, check the admission requirements to make sure you have completed any necessary prerequisite coursework and assembled your application materials. Most online BSN programs expect candidates to provide the following:

Admission Materials

Transcripts from previous academic programs; prior coursework in anatomy, biology, and chemistry; a writing sample; letters of recommendation or references

GPA Requirement

Online BSN programs typically require a 2.5 – 3.0 GPA

Other Requirements

Applicants must hold a valid LPN license

Why is Online LPN-to-BSN Program Accreditation Important?

Any online LPN-to-BSN program you consider should be accredited. The accreditation process ensures that a nursing program prepares students for the workforce. There are many advantages to attending an accredited program, including:

  • The ACEN and the CCNE verify that a program offers a high-quality education. Programs cannot be accredited without this verification.
  • Most institutions only accept transfer credits from other accredited programs.
  • Most graduate programs exclusively accept applicants with degrees from accredited programs.
  • Students who attend unaccredited programs are typically ineligible to receive federal financial aid.
  • Employers often prefer to hire graduates of accredited programs.

Paying for Online LPN-to-BSN Programs

Cost is another important aspect to consider as you research online BSN programs. While distance learners often avoid many of the fees associated with on-campus programs, there are other factors that influence tuition rates, including school type and program length. Your enrollment status and whether you choose to attend an in-state or out-of-state institution also affect educational costs.

Fortunately, there are a variety of financial aid opportunities for nursing students, such as scholarships, grants, and loans. Scholarships and grants are awarded based on merit or financial status, and do not need to be repaid. Loans consist of borrowed money that must eventually be paid back.

Learn More About the Top Online LPN-to-BSN Programs & Schools

Frequently Asked Questions About Online LPN-to-BSN Programs

How long does it take to go from an LPN/LVN to BSN?

While students can enroll in traditional programs, students should consider LPN-to-BSN programs, which require less time to graduate. Schools typically require two to three years on average with full-time attendance. However, other factors can influence the length of a program, including enrollment status. Part-time students can calculate their anticipated graduation based on the number of credits they take.

Can an LPN/LVN take the RN-NCLEX exam?

Students who have earned an LPN or licensed vocational nurse (LVN) diploma must take the NCLEX-PN to obtain licensure. Nurses who hold an associate or bachelor's degree may take the NCLEX-RN. LPNs and LVNs must continue their education before sitting for the NCLEX-RN.

What can RNs do that LPNs can not?

RNs provide direct patient care and work under less supervision than LPNs. RNs may administer medication, develop patient treatment plans, and educate patients and the public on medical issues. LPNs are primarily responsible for ensuring their patients' comfort and providing basic nursing care.

Can you keep working as an LPN while earning your BSN?

LPNs can work while earning a BSN program if they maintain a healthy balance between their professional and academic lives. However, many working nurses prefer to enroll as part-time students.

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