Top Florida RN-to-MSN Program

Advertisement NurseJournal.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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.

RN-to-MSN degrees offer the fastest route to advanced practice nursing careers, providing graduate training without having to first earn a bachelor of nursing. Campus-based or online RN-to-MSN programs provide an accelerated and affordable path to career advancement in clinical and supervisory roles in primary, preventive, and specialty healthcare fields. These bridge programs, which typically take three years or less to complete, appeal primarily to practicing registered nurses (RNs) with an associate degree in nursing (ADN) or nursing diploma.

The mounting physician shortage drives the demand for nurse practitioners (NPs), a type of graduate-trained advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) who performs many of the same services as doctors. Florida’s expanding healthcare needs, especially among its aging population, has propelled the employment of NPs.

Projections Central expects employment for NPs in Florida to increase 36.9% between 2018 and 2028, compared to 28.2% for the entire United States. Graduates of RN-to-MSN programs who find employment as NPs in Florida can expect an average annual salary of $101,510, earning 50% more than RNs without graduate training.

View ranking methodology here.

Best RN-to-MSN Programs in Florida

Rank School Location
1 South University Tampa and West Palm Beach, FL
2 University of Central Florida Orlando, FL
3 Florida State University Tallahassee, FL
4 University of North Florida Jacksonville, FL
5 University of West Florida Pensacola, FL
6 Nova Southeastern University Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Fort Myers, and Orlando, FL
7 University of Tampa Tampa, FL
Advertisement NurseJournal.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Featured Online Programs

  1. South University
    Location

    Tampa and West Palm Beach, FL

    In this fully online nursing program, you will boost your knowledge that you use as an RN, and will develop your clinical teaching skills and will learn to use your research in the practice of nursing. After you graduate, you will have the knowledge and skills with your MSN to compete for good-paying advanced nursing positions all over the country.

    • Campus: Tampa, West Palm Beach, Online
    • Tampa, West Palm Beach Type: For-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 with a specialization in Nurse Administrator, Nursing (MSN), Nursing with a specialization in Nurse Administrator (MSN)
  2. University of Central Florida
    Location

    Orlando, FL

    This accredited program allows you to finish your BSN and MSN concurrently. It is designed for you if you have an associate’s degree or a diploma in nursing. You can choose three tracks: clinical nurse leader, nurse educator and nursing leadership/management. This is a bridge program that leads to an MSN, and you also will need to be admitted to the BSN program in addition to the master’s program. You can earn your BSN and MSN in three years.

    • Campus: Orlando
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
    • Per Credit Hour: in state $368, out of state $1192
    • GRE/GMAT Required: No
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months for Masters
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid
  3. Florida State University
    Location

    Tallahassee, FL

    The MSN Nurse Educator program is set up to prepare you, the well qualified nursing professional, to become a well-paid nurse educator so that you can enjoy a career in patient education, staff nurse education and pre-licensure nurse education. You will be able to qualify for such positions at community colleges and in universities after you complete your master’s degree. All courses are offered online and you need to complete 38 credit hours for your master’s degree. You may complete your degree in two years – full time.

    • Campus: Tallahassee
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
    • Per Credit Hour: in state $428; out of state $1029
    • GRE/GMAT Required: Yes
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid
  4. University of North Florida
    Location

    Jacksonville, FL

    In this fully online MSN program, you can become a nurse practitioner that will be highly skilled in meeting all of the healthcare needs of people and families across the country. You will be eligible after graduation to take the family nurse practitioner certification examination. You can choose to focus your studies on the nurse practitioner track, or on the clinical nurse specialist track.

    • Campus: Jacksonville
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
    • Per Credit Hour: in state $492; out of state $1043
    • GRE/GMAT Required: Yes
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid
  5. University of West Florida
    Location

    Pensacola, FL

    This MSN degree has a focus in nursing administration and will help you to learn the skills that you need to succeed in nursing leadership and management. Another track in nursing education will help you to become a skilled nursing educator. Whether you choose to specialize in nursing administration or nursing education, you will be well qualified for many nursing-related positions at both health care organizations and universities.

    • Campus: Pensacola
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
    • Per Credit Hour: $333 in state; $960 out of state
    • GRE/GMAT Required: Yes
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid
  6. Nova Southeastern University
    Location

    Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Fort Myers, and Orlando, FL

    This online Master of Science in Nursing offers you three different tracks that will help you to meet your career goals. The tracks include education, health systems leadership and nursing informatics. The education track is for those who want to move into academic and staff development; the health systems leadership track is for nurses who want to move into health organization leadership; and the nursing informatics position is for nurses who are interested in working in computer technology for nursing.

    • Campus: Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Fort Myers, Orlando, and online
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
    • Per Credit Hour: $600
    • GRE/GMAT Required: No
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid
  7. University of Tampa
    Location

    Tampa, FL

    This program is fully accredited and is designed for the experienced nurse with an associate’s degree. You can earn your BSN and your MSN together and save thousands in tuition and two years of time. In the MSN program, you can focus on adult or family nurse practitioner training. You will be well prepared to work as an advanced practice nurse. Courses include Current Perspectives, Nursing Theory, Nursing Research, Professional Issues, and Family Theory.

    • Campus: Tampa
    • Type: Non Profit
    • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
    • Per Credit Hour: $546
    • GRE/GMAT Required: No – waived if you take NUR 600 Scholarly and Professional Communication in Nursing
    • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
    • On Campus Requirements: Yes
    • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid

Applying to an RN-to-MSN Degree Program in Florida

Education and licensure requirements for APRNs vary by state. Students who intend to work as NPs in Florida must complete a master of science in nursing (MSN) or doctorate in nursing from an accredited program and obtain at least one certification recognized by the Florida Board of Nursing. Although specific eligibility requirements differ by school, admission to an RN-to-MSN program generally requires a valid RN license and at least one year of clinical experience.

Applicants should already hold an ADN or nursing diploma. Students typically enter the MSN program with approximately 60 credits, including nursing prerequisites in human anatomy, biology, and chemistry.

Most MSN programs in Florida accept candidates with a minimum 3.0 GPA overall and a 3.0 in the science prerequisites. Schools typically ask for official transcripts from previous programs, letters of reference, a resume, and an essay outlining educational and career goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How long does it take to complete an RN-to-MSN program?

    Most RN-to-MSN programs take between 24-36 months to complete. MSN programs in Florida typically require 60 credits or more depending on the number of credits accepted from prior coursework transferred from an ADN or nursing diploma program. The number of credits completed each semester and any additional clinical hours required for one or more specialties can extend the length of time needed to earn the degree.

  • What is accreditation and why is it important?

    Attending an accredited nursing school ensures a quality education that provides the necessary skills to enter the workforce and determines financial aid eligibility and credit transfer. Only graduates of nursing schools accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing can obtain RN licensure or APRN certification.

  • What can I do with an RN-to-MSN?

    RN-to-MSN programs in Florida lead to an array of rewarding and lucrative positions in clinical practice, nursing administration and team leadership, and education. NPs can expect the best employment prospects and salaries in the high-demand specialties of acute care, geriatrics, psychiatric and mental health, family care, and pediatrics.

  • What is the difference between an RN-to-MSN and an RN-to-DNP?

    The RN-to-MSN degree trains nurses for direct clinical roles or indirect administrative roles. A doctorate, the highest degree in nursing education, provides training in clinical specialties and focuses on organization and system leadership. The RN-to-DNP, which takes 3-4 years, provides an accelerated route allowing students to complete MSN requirements while earning their doctorate.