For registered nurses (RNs) who are interested in expanding their career options, taking on leadership roles, or simply becoming more skilled in their work, a BSN is a necessity. As you know, it is possible to work as a nurse with an associate degree. However, the American Association of College of Nurses (AACN) encourages both new and existing nurses to pursue their BSN degree. In fact, their advocacy for this degree path has inspired pending legislation in thirteen states that dictates that those either holding or wishing to hold RN licensure must earn a BSN. Beyond this requirement, there are financial benefits to earning a BSN. PayScale reports that RNs with BSNs earn an average salary of $86,520, over $10,000 more annually than the average salary earned by RNs who hold an ADN. With these facts in mind, you may find yourself wondering what is required of RN to BSN students. What is needed to complete an RN to BSN program? Here is an overview of the RN to BSN class requirements.
First: What is an RN to BSN?
The RN to BSN program is designed for registered nurses who are interested in advancing their careers. It is ideal for those who are hoping to eventually fill leadership roles, expand their career options, or even pursue graduate study. The RN to BSN curriculum combines a foundation in liberal arts with advanced nursing courses. This coursework prepares graduates for advancement and provides them with growth and development in evidence-based practice, health assessment, quality, leadership, safety, informatics, professional seminars, and community health.
Students wishing to earn their BSN without leaving the field should consider an online RN to BSN program. These programs provide students with the flexibility they need to take the required RN to BSN classes remotely, at the pace they prefer. Online programs are completed in 7-week, concentrated sessions, with 6 start terms per year, providing students with the opportunity to begin their coursework when they’re able. Students must take 1 to 2 courses per session, but may be able to take up to 4 per session in order to complete their degree more quickly. Students are also able to transfer up to 90 credits to their online program, giving them the ability to complete their program even more quickly, should they have completed coursework at other institutions.
General Education Course Requirements
RN to BSN class requirements vary depending on the school. At University of Bridgeport, students in the RN to BSN program must complete a —however, this includes transfer credits. Specifically, nurses can transfer up to 90 credits from previous nursing coursework, allowing a more streamlined path towards their BSN degree. The remaining 30 credits must be completed at UB to complete the RN to BSN program.
Examples of general education classes you might transfer or complete as part of the RN to BSN program include:
- English 101 Composition
- Public Speaking
- Anatomy and Physiology, I and II
- Lifespan Development
In addition to these required general education classes, RN to BSN students must complete elective coursework. This can be done in a variety of areas, depending on your interests. Completing elective and general education requirements helps students become more well-rounded. A holistic, liberal arts education prepares students to interact with the world in an inquisitive way, making graduates of the BSN program capable of providing the best possible care for their patients.
RN to BSN Program/Transfer Course Requirements
Students are required to complete a variety of science and math courses as part of their studies. These courses can be transferred from previous institutions of study, as well. These classes include:
- Microbiology (with Lab)
- General Psychology
- Elementary Statistics
- Basic Nursing
Upper-Level RN to BSN Coursework Required
Students in the RN to BSN program are prepared for leadership roles through a variety of high-level courses. The required RN to BSN classes can include:
- Nursing Theory and Evidence
- Health Assessment
- Community Health
- Professional Seminar
- Leadership and Management
- Quality, Safety, Health Policy
- Nursing and Healthcare Informatics
- Population and Global Health
Additionally, students are required to complete a capstone project.
The result of this coursework is a nurse who is skilled in the ability to provide patient-centered, evidence-based care. The training of this curriculum creates a clinically competent nurse who is also prepared to apply leadership and management skills in a clinical environment. The RN to BSN completion program integrates the liberal arts and nursing courses to expand the knowledge of its students beyond the base of basic nursing practices. The result is a well-rounded nurse who can provide top-notch care to their patients while, eventually, managing a nursing team.
Start Your RN to BSN Classes
The American medical system is in dire need of nurses, now more than ever. There is a particular need for leaders in the field. With higher pay and better benefits, there are clear reasons to pursue a BSN, even if you’re already working as a registered nurse. A BSN will prepare you for career growth, leadership, and even graduate school. With University of Bridgeport’s online RN to BSN program, you’ll have the flexibility to pursue your studies while continuing your work.
Interested in earning your BSN degree at University of Bridgeport? Find out more about our program here.