Individuals dreaming of becoming a nurse have to complete a nursing program and one such competent program is the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). It prepares students for a job and a life as a registered nurse. It also opens up more opportunities and gives the bachelor’s degree graduates the confidence to handle more responsibilities that are not given to associate’s degree graduates.
A BSN degree usually takes about four years to complete. It consists of liberal arts courses to complete general education requirements during the first year and courses specific to nursing during the last three years. It may also include hands-on learning for the students that are often conducted at large hospitals.
In their first year, BSN students may study anatomy, physiology, and psychology, with some programs including physical education and fitness subjects. In their second year, they may study statistics, microbiology, and nursing competencies. In their third year of BSN degree, the nursing students may study therapeutic modalities, pharmacology, mental health, and adult health. In their last year, the students will concentrate on professional foundations, health care systems, and nursing synthesis.
Other topics that nursing students might discuss include health assessment; nutrition; emergency care; public and global health; family, community, and population-based care; research and scholarship for evidence-based practice; and issues and trends in nursing.
Those who already hold a bachelor’s degree in another field but want to take up nursing can enroll in an accelerated BSN degree. This accelerated program includes intensive summer sessions before the students can join the other nursing students taking the traditional program. The program often follows a full-time schedule.
BSN Degree Program Online
Registered nurses with a license can pursue a BSN degree online. Even if it is a distance learning program, it still requires a practicum to improve and broaden the students’ skills and knowledge in nursing. It also concentrates on the nursing clinical practice and procedures, as well as community health, leadership and research.
To get into an online BSN degree, candidates must not only be a licensed RN, but also a holder of a diploma or associate’s degree in nursing. Some programs even look for work experience. Candidates are also required to pass a criminal background check, medical history, and immunizations. They may need to earn a certification in basic life support, as well.
An online BSN degree usually consists of 120 credit hours, with prerequisites before the students can take the upper-level curriculum. Since RNs with a diploma or associate’s degree may have many of their previous credits transferred to their BSN program, they might be able to complete it within two years or less. The courses are taken online, but their practicum requires their personal appearance at a local facility.
The distance learning programs for BSN students discuss topics such as nursing research, health assessment, community health nursing, pathophysiology, project management, leadership and organization, care for older adults, and issues, trends, economics, and statistics.
According to BestCollegeReviews.org, their list of the best RN to BSN online programs was made based on their affordability, flexibility, and academic quality. The schools on the list include the University of Massachusetts – Amherst, Western Carolina University, University of Cincinnati College of Nursing, University of Wyoming, and Ohio University. Also on the list were West Texas A&M University, Old Dominion University, SUNY Delhi School of Nursing, Fort Hays State University, and Western Kentucky University School of Nursing.