FIND MSN PROGRAMS

FIND MSN PROGRAMS

50 Best Online RN to MSN Programs – 2023


Written By: Pattie Trumble, MPP, MPH

RN to MSN programs are gateways for registered nurses with associate’s degrees who want to attain their Master’s of Nursing Science (MSN) degree without having to go back to school to earn a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN). This track primarily opens up professional opportunities in nursing informatics, nursing administration, or nursing education. If you’re interested in attaining an advanced practice nursing credential, once you finish your MSN through one of these programs, you can easily pursue a nurse practitioner certificate program. Enrolling in one of the many RN to MSN programs online this year or next will enable you to save time and money in the long run. Keep reading if you want to learn more about the best online RN to MSN programs.


RECOMMENDED ONLINE MSN PROGRAMS

What Exactly Is the Goal of an RN to MSN Degree Program?


RN to MSN programs are specifically designed to be a shortcut for RNs with two-year degrees who want to earn the credentials and the skills necessary to take their career to the next level. With a two-year degree, in all likelihood, you will never advance beyond floor nursing. A BSN will give you some career flexibility but not as much as an MSN. So, why not go for it?

There are two types of online RN to MSN programs:

• Bridge programs:

Bridge RN to MSN programs are designed for registered nurses who hold a bachelor’s degree in a field other than nursing. These nurses have already taken the required general undergraduate education courses and may not have to repeat them.

• Traditional programs:

Traditional RN to MSN programs are aimed at nurses who have graduated from community colleges or hospital diploma programs. In addition to coursework in the bachelor’s and master’s tracks, these nurses will most likely need to earn general undergraduate education credits.



5 Reasons Why Registered Nurses Must Get Their MSN Degree


The American economy has taken a major hit during the coronavirus pandemic, but the demand for nurses remains high. With a degree from one of the best RN to MSN programs online, you’ll be able to take better advantage of the many opportunities available to RNs who are at the top of their game. An MSN degree will enable you to:

1. Earn more money:

Many nursing jobs associated with the MSN track offer six-figure salaries, which is a considerable bump up from the average salary earned by a floor nurse.

2. Work better hours:

As a floor nurse, you are expected to work every other weekend. Nurses with MSNs go on to work either in advanced practice, clinical education, or healthcare management, and these career tracks commonly adhere to a 40-hour work week. Working more regular hours will allow you to spend more time with your family.

3. Prolong your professional career:

In 2011, the incidence of OSHA-recordable injuries and illnesses among hospital workers was higher than it was among construction workers. Nurses who work on hospital wards routinely deal with exposure to infectious disease, back injuries, needle sticks, and exposure to toxic substances. Even if you don’t get injured, though, floor nursing is a physically demanding career because you are always on your feet. As an MSN-prepared administrative nurse, you will be exposed to fewer potential hazards, and it’s likely you’ll spend a significant amount of time behind a desk.

4. Explore more career options:

Whether you decide to become a clinical specialist, an administrative healthcare leader, a researcher, an educator, or a public health expert, as an MSN-prepared nurse, you’ll have numerous opportunities.

5. Remain in demand:

The need for nurses with administrative training has never been higher. An MSN education will prepare you to take on leadership roles in whatever professional circumstances you find yourself in as you continue your nursing career.



Online RN to MSN Programs VS. Traditional RN to MSN Programs: Pros & Cons


It’s true that there was once a time that online nursing education didn’t command the same respect as campus education, but those days are long over. RN to MSN programs online that have been accredited either by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) are in every way equivalent to the face-to-face learning that takes place in university classrooms. ACEN and CCNE are programmatic accreditation agencies that are officially recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education. So long as you are attending an ACEN- or CCNE-accredited school, you can be confident in the quality of your MSN education.

There are other advantages to RN to MSN online programs as well. When you enroll in a distance learning program, you take full control of your own schedule. You can keep working a full-time or part-time job, and you can continue fulfilling your family responsibilities. If you have young children in the home, you can plan your class and study time around their schedules. Online classes are often significantly less expensive than their campus counterparts, and you’ll save on extras like transportation costs (including car maintenance), and room and board.

Your relationships with your professors and fellow classmates may pose more of a dilemma, however. A physical classroom offers many more opportunities to build rapport with those around you. As a student in one of the many online RN to MSN programs, you will have to be proactive in taking advantage of electronic chat, instant messaging, video conferencing, and other digital communication channels that are open to you. Additionally, studying at your own pace may prove to be a challenge for students who aren’t self-starters. If you’re a procrastinator by nature, you may be tempted to postpone lessons, assignments, and studying if you’re enrolled at an online school.



How Long Are Online RN to MSN Programs?


Most RN to MSN online programs typically entail 60 to 120 credits, which will take between 30 and 48 months to complete. These discrepancies in length reflects the fact that different clinical specialties may require different numbers of clinical hours. Additionally, compliance with licensing requirements may vary from state to state.

Students who enroll in the University of Pittsburg’s RN-to-MSN nursing informatics or clinical nurse leader specializations, for example, can expect to spend their first year taking coursework equivalent to classes they would take to earn a BSN. Thereafter, prospective MSN candidates who are working toward a nursing informatics specialty must earn 38.5 credits while students specializing in a clinical nurse leader specialization must earn 42 credits.

Students pursuing clinical nurse leader, health system management, and public health nursing MSN specialties through Drexel University’s RN to MSN program must complete 45 credits while students in the nursing education and quality assurance MSN tracks must complete 46 credits.

The University of Central Florida requires RNs with non-nursing bachelor’s degrees to take nine credits of classes as prerequisites before they will be admitted into the university’s MSN program. Thereafter, both the Leadership and Management specialty and the Nurse Educator specialty can be completed in five semesters by full-time students and seven semesters by part-time students.



How Much Do RN to MSN Online Programs Cost?


Graduate nursing degree programs are expensive, and the best online RN to MSN programs are no exception to that rule. You can expect to spend anywhere between $22,070 and $231,600 earning your degree. Private universities tend to be more expensive than state-subsidized schools, and many universities offer discounted tuition to residents of their own states even when courses are offered online. Some schools will also charge you for the malpractice insurance you’ll need in order to participate in clinical rotations.

Ball State University charges a tuition rate of $339 per credit for Indiana residents who are taking between 1 and 11 credits in conjunction with one of the university’s RN to MSN online programs; out-of-state residents must pay $551 per credit. Students who are taking 12 to 18 credits per semester, however, will be charged a flat fee of $4,069 on top of which Indiana residents will be charged $25 per credit and non-residents will be charged $237 per credit. Students taking more than 18 credits will be charged the same flat fee, but Indiana residents will pay an additional $339 for each credit over 18 while non-residents will pay $551 for each credit over 18.

The University of North Carolina is another school that charges state residents less than out-of-state residents. North Carolina residents pursuing one of its RN to MSN online programs will pay $20,348 their first year, $29,707 their second year, and $11,745 their third year; this amount includes tuition, and insurance and safety fees. Out-of-state students will spend considerably more: Their first-year tuition and insurance costs will amount to $33,642, which will rise to $51,862 the second year before decreasing to $20,607 in Year 3.



COURSEWORK IN ONLINE RN TO MSN PROGRAMS


Online RN to MSN programs follow the same curriculum guidelines as traditional, campus-based RN to MSN programs. Many schools allow students to apply selected course credits towards both bachelor’s and master’s degree requirements, reducing the number of total credits required. After all, BSN and MSN degree programs tend to have overlapping coursework requirements to some extent: The same general education classes and introductory nursing courses may be required in both the baccalaureate and master’s level nursing degree programs. RN to MSN programs streamline their educational requirements by eliminating such redundancies.

Once general education and introductory nursing courses are out of the way, the curriculum will be very similar to a standard BSN to MSN program with the caveat that RN to MSN programs seem to offer more specialties with an administrative focus such as nurse educator or clinical nursing leader rather than clinical nurse practitioner options. Some schools award a BSN to students in their online RN to MSN programs upon completion of required coursework while others only award an MSN or award a BSN and an MSN at the end of the program.

Jacksonville University requires students on the RN to MSN track to take 23 credits of BSN nursing courses before they can begin taking MSN core courses and specialization courses. Students at the Western University of Health Sciences will take one full year (13 credits) of “catch-up” classes. On the other hand, Drexel University’s online RN to MSN bridge program only requires students to take one additional course in genetics and its application to the nursing process.



Admission Requirements for Online RN to MSN Programs


Though admission prerequisites for the best RN to MSN programs online vary by school, all of them will require an unencumbered nursing license, transcripts pertaining to nursing education and any other undergraduate education, letters of recommendation, a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0, a resume and a personal statement. Many schools may require an in-person or telephone interview as well. Most schools give preference to candidates who have at least one year of professional experience. International students will need to pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam.

If you want to enter one of the University of Pittsburgh’s RN to MSN online programs, you will need to submit three letters of recommendation as well as proof that you’ve completed all prerequisite general education and nursing education courses. The University of North Carolina offers applicants the opportunity to have their transcripts from previous schools evaluated to see if they have what it takes to be accepted to UNC. Applicants to the University of Central Florida’s RN to MSN program must reside in one of the 34 Nursing Licensure Compact (NLC) states.



How to Pay for Your RN to MSN Education?


When you invest in an RN to MSN program, the returns on your investment are likely to be great, but the upfront investment itself will be sizeable. It’s important to start planning your budget before you start applying to schools.

One of the advantages to enrolling in an online program is that you can continue working while you are studying for your degree. Some employers will even help subsidize their employees’ educations in exchange for a promise to continue working for a set amount of time after you graduate.

The federal government gives out needs-based grants and loans on the basis of the information contained in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Some states also use the FAFSA to determine financial aid, so make sure you submit the form before its deadline. Additionally, you may qualify to receive a stipend as a teaching or research assistant at the school you’re accepted at; in fact, some schools even make loans available to students. In a pinch, you can also apply to private financial institutions for loans although they typically charge higher interest than government and academic loans.



10 Things to Keep in Mind While Applying for Top RN to MSN Online Programs


An RN to MSN program offers the most convenient way for a registered nurse to qualify for professional roles like nurse informaticist, nurse educator, or nurse manager. Here are some tips to help guide you as you apply to the best RN to MSN programs online.

1. Keep a detailed list of what you need to do:

Applying to an RN to MSN program is a complicated process. Make sure that all your prerequisite classes have been taken within the past five years; if not, you may need to retake them before you apply. Keep track of the forms you’ll have to submit as part of your application, and make sure they’re in by the deadline.

2. Research schools thoroughly:

There are doubtless many schools that can provide you with the education you’re seeking, but do they also meet your goals in terms of cost, course schedules, and overall program reputation? Remember that most schools require a fee with your application, so applying to schools that don’t fit your needs can get very expensive.

3. Check out your prospective instructors:

Your program’s website should list all faculty members, their education, their credentials, and their professional experience. Since successful online teaching differs in many respects from face-to-face teaching, make sure your instructors have prior distance teaching experience as well.

4. Check out national certification exam results:

Passing rates are the true test of how effective any RN to MSN program is. It speaks to how well instructors and class curricula are able to prepare students. Passing rates for both first-time and repeat test takers should be displayed on your prospective school’s website. If they aren’t, that’s a red flag.

5. Submit your application as soon as possible:

Competition for spots in one of the best online RN to MSN programs can be fierce. Once those spots are filled, admissions are closed. If you want to optimize your chances of acceptance, hand your application in early.

6. Choose your references carefully:

Your references should be professional contacts who can speak to your skills set and your character. Make sure to contact potential references beforehand to guarantee they’re able to provide you with a strong, positive referral. Send them a thank you note afterwards and update them on whether or not you were accepted into the program they recommended you for.

7. Take time writing your personal statement:

Your grade point average and test scores are important data but they won’t give the admissions committee any real insight into your individual strengths. Your personal statement is your opportunity to showcase your personality and your commitment to your goals. Take time crafting it.

8. Practice interview techniques:

Most RN to MSN online programs require a successful interview as part of the admissions process. Make sure you know how to make a great first impression.

9. Take advantage of rolling admissions:

Whereas campus-based programs typically wait for the end of a semester to enroll new students, online schools often offer multiple start dates per year and accept students into these classes on a first-come-first-serve basis. Some starting dates are more popular than others, so you can raise your chances of acceptance by applying for a spot during a less competitive cycle.

10. Familiarize yourself with online research tools:

Familiarize yourself with online research tools like your school’s library and databases. That way you can hit the ground running when you start taking classes.



WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE RN TO MSN PROGRAMS IN THE NATION FOR 2023?


(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 50 best accredited online RN to MSN programs in the nation for the year 2023.)


1. Duke University - Durham, NC


Specialties Offered:

Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

As a registered nurse, if you are aspiring a career advancement, then what better than entering the advanced practice field as a certified NP. Well, to help you achieve this goal, Duke University offers some of the best online RN-to-MSN programs in NC. Here with multiple RN-to-MSN NP program options, you can take your career as an RN straight to the NP level.

Based on your interests, you can specialize in either adult-gerontology care, family health, neonatal care, pediatrics, mental health, or women’s health. Regardless of the RN-to-MSN program you enroll in, you’ll require completing seven MSN core courses, eight NP-specific courses, and three NP-intensive courses. Graduation requires the completion of around 48 credits and 728 clinical hours.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for Duke’s online RN-to-MSN degree programs, regardless of the NP specialization, you’ll need to have an active RN license and an accredited non-bachelor’s degree. Your GPA must be at least 3.0. Besides, the school requires you to submit your transcripts, recommendation letters, and a personal statement to fulfill the admission requirements.

Why Choose Duke University Online RN-to-MSN

• The nursing school has been recognized among the best in the nation according to the U.S. News & World Report.
• Duke has been imparting excellent quality online training for the past 20 years. Over the years, the college has continuously refined its online teaching pedagogy to offer RN to MSN students a satisfying learning experience.
• Here, you’ll learn under the mentorship of expert faculty members who are leading in their respective fields.
• Because Duke maintains partnerships with clinical affiliates across the nation, no matter where you are located, you’ll be able to find a suitable site to complete your clinical training.


2. University of Mississippi Medical Center - Jackson, MS


Specialties Offered:

Nursing and Health Care Administrator, Nurse Educator, Acute Care Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

If you are searching for affordable accredited online RN-to-MSN programs in MS, then you must check out University of Mississippi Medical Center’s RN-to-MSN programs. With an affordable tuition cost and flexible online classes, you’ll be able to achieve your goals in your preferred field of advanced nursing.

Here, based on where you find your calling, you can choose from nursing administration, nursing education, adult-gerontology care, family health, or psychiatric mental health.

Through these programs, though you’ll complete both, BSN and MSN courses, you will be conferred only the MSN degree.

If you choose any of the NP specializations, you’ll require completing around 61 credits in BSN, MSN core, and NP-specific courses. The common baccalaureate and masters’ courses teach you concepts in nursing research & design, health assessment, healthcare leadership, pathophysiology, health promotion, and pharmacotherapeutics. Also, you’ll gain knowledge in health informatics, healthcare quality improvement, health policy, and finance & leadership in healthcare. Thereafter, the RN-to-MSN online programs continue with NP-specific courses.

The RN to MSN program, leading to certification as a nurse administrator comprises a total of 53 credits. The program mainly focuses on healthcare leadership & collaboration.

On the other hand, the nurse education program, consisting of 54 credits trains you in teaching methods, curriculum development, and educational technology.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, your associate degree must be from an accredited school and your GPA must be at least 3.0. Also, the school requires you to have completed pre-requisite courses with a minimum grade of C. Additionally, you must have at least one year of nursing experience.

Why Choose University of Mississippi Medical Center Online RN-to-MSN

• Out of all the online RN-to-MSN schools in MS, this school stands out for offering you an enriching interdisciplinary learning environment. This is because the nursing school is housed in a medical center, the state’s only academic health sciences center. Further, access to four major hospitals not only adds to the learning experiences but also opens up a huge plethora of resources.
• University of Mississippi Medical Center is internationally renowned as a Center of Excellence.
• The school is affiliated with the Cochrane US organization, a network that works towards evidence-based healthcare practice. This is a good indicator of evidence-based practice principles being incorporated into every aspect of your RN to MSN training.
• The nursing school manages several clinics throughout the state where students are provided service-learning opportunities. As an RN to MSN student, you can participate and learn while you serve the health needs of the community.


3. Stony Brook University - Stony Brook, NY


Specialties Offered:

Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwifery, Nursing Education, and Nursing Leadership

Program Details:

Are you a registered nurse who has a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field? Do you wish to climb the career ladder rather quickly? If you’ve answered yes to both these questions then enrolling in Stony Brook University’s online RN-to-MSN programs can be a great idea. Here, the RN-to-MSN programs lead to certification either as a nurse-midwife, nurse leader, nurse educator, or nurse practitioner, depending on the program you choose.

To become an NP, the college offers several options, including adult gerontology, family health, neonatal care, pediatrics, and psychiatric mental health. To graduate from any of the RN-to-MSN NP programs, you’ll require completing credits anywhere close to 45 credits.

Similarly, the RN-to-MSN Nurse Midwifery program also comprises 45 credits, whereas if you opt for the nursing leadership program, you will require completing 36 credits. On the other hand, the nursing education program consists of courses worth 45 credits.

All these RN-to-MSN online programs require you to first complete bridge courses before starting with the graduate-level courses.

Admission Requirements:

To gain admission into either one of the RN-to-MSN programs, you must have an active RN license. Besides, you must possess an accredited bachelor’s in a non-nursing field with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, the school prefers that you have at least one year of relevant work experience. Additionally, to fulfill the admission requirements, you must submit three letters of recommendation and your unofficial transcripts.

Why Choose Stony Brook University Online RN-to-MSN

• The nursing school has a rich history of more than 50 years of training competent professionals.
• Students from the military background can expect financial benefits to make their education affordable.
• The nursing school ranks among the best in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• The school’s several clinical partners across the state and throughout the nation make it easy to secure a site and preceptor for your clinical training.


4. University of Texas Medical Branch - Galveston, TX


Specialties Offered:

Clinical Nurse Leader, Executive Nurse Leader, and Nurse Educator

Program Details:

University of Texas Medical Branch’s RN-to-MSN online programs offer you an option for dual enrollment wherein you first enter the RN-to-BSN pathway and immediately continue into one of the online MSN programs. The MSN is offered in combination with three specialties including Clinical Nurse Leader, Executive Nurse Leader, and Nurse Educator.

To start with, you’ll complete 10 courses of the RN to BSN curriculum which is common, regardless of the MSN specialization you choose. Thereafter you continue with the program to complete the remaining 16 courses, after which you’ll earn your MSN and the eligibility to take the certification exam within your chosen area of focus.

Out of the total 62 credits that comprise your RN-BSN-MSN coursework, you may receive credit of up to 12 credits for any graduate-level courses you have completed in your undergraduate nursing education.

Some of the topics you gain expertise on include, evidence-based nursing practice, pathophysiology, pharmacology, informatics & quality improvement, advanced health assessment, and healthcare economics & finance.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must have an active RN license. Also, you must have completed either an accredited ADN or a nursing diploma with a GPA of at least 2.5. Besides, you must have completed a minimum of one year of nursing experience.

Why Choose University of Texas Medical Branch Online RN-to-MSN

• Here, the small-sized classes allow for close-knit interactions with peers and faculty.
• University of Texas Medical Branch’s faculty is highly experienced and committed to helping you achieve a positive academic outcome.
• The college’s wide network of clinical partners allows you to complete the clinical training within your geographical location.
• As an online RN-to-MSN graduate, you will join the large family of more than 14,000 nursing graduates that are serving across the nation.


5. Drexel University - Philadelphia, PA


Specialties Offered:

Leadership in Health Systems Management, Nursing Education, Public Health Nursing, and Quality, Safety, & Risk Management in Healthcare

Program Details:

If you want to accelerate your nursing career, then enrolling in one of the best RN-to-MSN online programs in the nation should be a prudent next step. Drexel University offers excellent options that can be a great stepping stone to a fulfilling career in an advanced nursing field. Through its online RN-to-MSN programs, you will complete BSN as well as MSN courses, however, you will earn only an MSN degree.

Upon enrollment into these programs, you’ll first complete the MSN bridge courses after which you’ll continue to take the MSN and advanced nursing courses.

Drexel’s online RN-to-MSN degree programs offer specialization options, including leadership in health systems management, nursing education, public health nursing, and quality, safety, & risk management in healthcare. Regardless of the specialization you choose, you’ll be able to graduate within two to three years. Suppose you are unsure of your area of focus at the time of enrollment, you can instead take five MSN core courses and then select your specialization. To graduate, you must complete anywhere close to 51 credits.

Admission Requirements:

To gain admission into any of Drexel’s online RN-to-MSN degree programs, you must have a current RN license in your state of practice. Also, your ADN or nursing diploma must be from an accredited school.

Why Choose Drexel University Online RN-to-MSN

• Drexel allows you to lock your tuition fee for up to three years, so if you graduate within this timeline, you’ll be paying the same costs from the beginning until you graduate.
• Drexel’s RN-to-MSN online programs rank among the best online MSN programs in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• The school’s online platform is highly interactive and offers an engaging learning experience. Further, with an experienced faculty, you’ll be mentored to provide patient-centric care in a dynamic healthcare environment. Little wonder, that Drexel’s online RN to MSN graduates stand out in the job market.
• Drexel offers enriching study abroad opportunities to enhance your virtual learning experience, thereby preparing you to offer nursing care in a global environment.


6. Ball State University - Muncie, IN


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Administrator, and Nurse Educator

Program Details:

Whether you find your calling in primary care, or are inclined towards playing non-clinical roles of a nurse administrator or nursing educator, at Ball State, you can transition to your desired role straight after completing your RN education. Among the well-known accredited online RN-to-MSN programs in the nation, here, you have three fields to choose from, family health, nursing administration, and nursing education.

The programs, regardless of the specialization, comprise courses in research core, nursing core, and specialization-specific courses. Also, you’ll take bridge courses before starting with the MSN curriculum. Graduation requires you to complete credits anywhere from 36 to 47, depending on your chosen advanced nursing role.

Admission Requirements:

These online RN-to-MSN programs are open to registered nurses who have an associate's and a non-nursing bachelor's degree. Besides, your GPA must be at least 3.0. In addition, the school requires you to submit three recommendation letters and all your transcripts.

Why Choose Ball State University Online RN-to-MSN

• Ball State implements the ‘Quality Matters’ plan. Therefore you can be assured of receiving high-quality online education.
• The U.S. News & World Report recognizes Ball State’s online RN-to-MSN education as one of the best in the nation.
• The school is a designated NLN Center of Excellence.
• You will be mentored by an expert faculty that comprises scholars and researchers.
• Ball State boasts of an excellent pass rate on the national certification exams.


7. University of Memphis - Memphis, TN


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Executive Leadership, and Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

The University of Memphis’s online RN-to-MSN programs prepare you for three highly rewarding careers, including nursing education, executive leadership, and family health, based on the path you choose.

The nursing education program trains you for teaching roles and requires completing 31 credits. Whereas the executive leadership program, a 37-credit curriculum prepares you for healthcare leadership and management. On the other hand, the family nurse practitioner program is 46-credit coursework that trains you with evidence-based skills to provide primary care to individuals and families of all age groups.

The nursing education program focuses on curriculum design & education theory and evaluation methods in nursing education. The executive leadership coursework teaches you healthcare finance, financial management & resource allocation, accountability, and advocacy & ethics. On the other hand, the FNP program comprises courses in advanced primary care, health promotion, disease prevention, and evidence-based practice.

Admission Requirements:

These programs are open to registered nurses with an associate in nursing or a diploma. To qualify, your minimum GPA should be 2.5. Also, you must have completed pre-requisite courses in anatomy & physiology, microbiology, and psychology.

Why Choose University of Memphis Online RN-to-MSN

• The school boasts a 75% graduation rate. This is a good indicator of most of its students achieving a positive academic outcome.
• University of Memphis’s RN-to-MSN pathway is ranked among the best in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• The school actively gets involved in several research projects, including health policy, health promotion, oncology health, cardiovascular health, palliative care, and education research. As an online RN-to-MSN student, you can get involved and gain insightful learnings.


8. University of Maryland - Baltimore, MD


Specialties Offered:

Health Services Leadership & Management, Nursing Informatics, and Community/Public Health Nursing

Program Details:

University of Maryland’s RN-to-MSN online programs are one of the quickest routes to becoming a masters-prepared nurse leader. With these programs, although you’ll combine the undergraduate and graduate coursework, you’ll still be earning two degrees, a BSN and an MSN. The programs allow you to substitute six credits of BSN courses with the MSN coursework, thereby saving on time and costs. Here, you can choose from three specialization areas; community/public health nursing, health services leadership & management, and nursing informatics. To graduate, you’ll require to complete 69 to 71 credits. Most students graduate within two years.

The leadership program prepares you to lead in a dynamic healthcare environment. Whereas the community public health program prepares you to solve issues of healthcare. On the other hand, the nursing informatics program emphasizes the implementation of information technology. Based on your convenience, you can complete either of these programs on a part-time or full-time basis. Regardless of the schedule, you enroll in, you must complete all the courses within a maximum of six years.

Admission Requirements:

To be considered for either of these programs, you must have an ADN or a nursing diploma and a bachelor’s degree in another field. Your GPA must be a minimum of 2.5. Also, you must submit one recommendation letter, a personal statement, a resume, and all your official transcripts.

Why Choose University of Maryland Online RN-to-MSN

• University of Maryland’s online RN-to-MSN degree programs rank among the best online graduate programs in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• To help you offset the costs of your education, the University of Maryland offers several scholarships and financial aid opportunities. You’ll be able to access merit-based scholarships, federal financial aid, and graduate assistantships.
• The nursing school has a rich history of more than 130 years of training nurses through excellence in education & innovation in research.
• In addition to 28 simulation labs, the University of Maryland has more than 400 clinical affiliates. Therefore when it comes to clinical training, you’ll receive plenty of practice experiences before you transition to the workplace.


9. University of Texas at Arlington - Arlington, TX


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

If you are keen on earning both, a BSN as well as an MSN, then the University of Texas at Arlington’s RN-to-MSN online degree program can be a great option. Here, within 42 months, you can earn two degrees and also gain specialized skills in primary care. The program requires you to complete 78 credits in RN to BSN, MSN, and FNP courses. The RN to BSN courses strengthen your knowledge in holistic health assessment, nursing research, nursing leadership & management, and health policy & legal aspects of professional nursing. The MSN-FNP courses teach you concepts in advanced pathophysiology, pharmacology, health assessment, and evidence-based practice. Upon graduation, you will be eligible to take the FNP certification exam.

Admission Requirements:

The potential applicant must have an active and unencumbered RN license and an accredited ADN or diploma. Besides, your GPA must be at least 3.0. Also, the school requires you to have at least two years of work experience as a nurse. To complete your online application, you must submit your official transcripts.

Why Choose University of Texas at Arlington Online RN-to-MSN

• At the University of Texas at Arlington, you’ll be able to lock in your tuition rate. So, you’ll be paying the same rate from the beginning to the end, provided you graduate within the prescribed timeline and you stay continuously enrolled in the program.
• This school is proudly one of the largest public nursing schools in the country.
• The online RN-to-MSN program comes with multiple start dates, so you can start your training when you are up for it.
• The University of Texas at Arlington School of Nursing boasts of high pass rates on the FNP certification exam, indicating the excellent performance of its graduates.


10. University of Alabama at Birmingham - Birmingham, AL


Specialties Offered:

Nurse Practitioner (Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner with Registered Nurse First Assist (RNFA), Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, & Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner) and Nursing Health Systems Leadership (Nurse Educator, Nurse Management of Care Transitions, Nursing Health Systems Administration, & Nursing Informatics)

Program Details:

The University of Alabama at Birmingham offers a wide range of career paths through its accredited online RN-to-MSN programs. Through any of these programs, you will be able to earn an MSN and the eligibility to take the certification exam within your chosen area of focus. Here, there are several NP specializations to choose from in addition to four non-clinical roles of nursing education, nursing management, nursing administration, and nursing informatics. The RN-to-MSN NP programs train you with specialized skills in family health, adult gerontology care, psychiatric mental health, pediatrics, neonatal care, or women’s health, based on the specialization you choose.

Regardless of the RN-to-MSN program you choose, you will first complete 11 credits of bridge courses before starting with the MSN and specialization-specific coursework. Most students complete the RN to MSN coursework within two years of full-time study.

If you enroll in any of the RN-to-MSN NP programs, you’ll require completing around 45 credits in MSN and specialization-specific courses. On the other hand, if you choose any of the non-clinical programs you require completing around 38 credits.

Admission Requirements:

To be eligible for any of UAB’s online RN-to-MSN programs, you must have an accredited associate's degree and a bachelor's in another field. Also, you must have an active and unencumbered RN license in the state you intend to practice. Besides, the school requires you to have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0. To fulfill the admission requirements, you must submit three recommendation letters and your official transcript.

Why Choose University of Alabama at Birmingham Online RN-to-MSN

• Most of the school’s RN-to-MSN NP programs rank among the best in the nation as per the U.S News & World Report. Further, the leadership program is also recognized by the U.S. News & World Report for the strong leaders it produces.
• Because of the vast network of more than 5000 clinical affiliates that the University of Alabama at Birmingham maintains, you will find it rather easy to secure a clinical site and preceptor for your practicum.
• The school offers several funding options to reduce the cost of your RN-to-MSN education. So, you can avail of scholarships, a fellowship, a traineeship, or a nurse faculty loan, based on your eligibility and financial needs.
• The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s small-sized classes offer ample opportunities to closely interact with faculty and peers. You’ll be well supported throughout your journey, be it the individualized attention or through other support services such as the Writing Center, tutoring, and many more.


11. University of Rochester - Rochester, NY


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Clinical Nurse Leader, Leadership in Health Care Systems, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

As more and more employers are hiring masters-prepared nurses, it is prudent for ADN-registered nurses to advance their careers by obtaining an MSN. By enrolling in one of the best accredited RN-to-MSN online programs, you will be able to gain high-quality education without putting a hold on your current life. The University of Rochester offers one such pathway with several specialization options. Through flexible coursework, the school trains you in several areas of advanced nursing, including, nursing education, clinical nurse leader, leadership in health care systems, and a variety of nurse practitioner roles.

Regardless of the specialization, upon completion of your online RN-to-MSN education, you will earn two degrees, a BSN and an MSN. To graduate, you will require two to three years of part-time study. However, the exact duration will depend on the number of courses you take each semester.

If you choose any of the NP programs, you’ll require competing around 45 to 55 credits, based on your chosen population focus. Also, you’ll need to complete around 600 to 700 clinical hours.

On the other hand, the nursing education program comprises 36 credits, whereas the clinical nurse leader specialization requires you to complete 37 credits. If you enroll in the leadership in health care systems program, you’ll need to earn 31 credits to earn your degree.

Admission Requirements:

The school follows a holistic admission process wherein all aspects of your application will be reviewed by the admission committee. To qualify, you must have an ADN or diploma in nursing from an accredited school with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Besides, your RN license must be valid in New York State. In addition, the school requires you to have at least one year of work experience as a registered nurse.

Why Choose University of Rochester Online RN-to-MSN

• The University of Rochester offers tuition discounts to its employees and its affiliate organizations.
• The school’s online RN-to-MSN programs rank among the best in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• The school ranks among the top recipients of research funding from the NIH. With research in several areas including HIV, sexual health, aging, cancer, and palliative care, you can explore a variety of learning possibilities.
• Because the nursing school embraces students from diverse cultural backgrounds, you’ll be able to greatly enhance cultural competence and sensitivity.


12. University of Arizona - Tucson, AZ


Specialties Offered:

Clinical Systems Leadership

Program Details:

If you are keen on enrolling in one of the best online RN-to-MSN programs in the nation, then the University of Arizona’s RN-to-MSN program can be a befitting choice. The program is offered online and leads to certification as a clinical systems leader. To graduate, you will require completing a total of eleven courses.

The program trains you in several concepts, including the foundations of systems leadership, evidence-based practice, health promotion & risk reduction, population health, and healthcare informatics. Also, you’ll learn about healthcare business dynamics, leadership for patient-centered care, healing environments, and quality & safety management. Finally, your training ends with a 16-week capstone project.

Admission Requirements:

To be eligible for this online RN-to-MSN program, you must have an associate's or diploma in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, your RN license must be current and active in your state of practice. The school also requires you to have completed a college-level statistics course in the last five years.

Why Choose University of Arizona Online RN-to-MSN

• The online RN-to-MSN program is among the best ranking in the nation and #1 in the state as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• The University of Arizona offers solid support in terms of academic advising, writing coaching, and academic success coaching.
• The school offers one of the most affordable tuition rates in the state.


13. Nova Southeastern University - Ft Lauderdale, FL


Specialties Offered:

Advanced Population Health, Executive Nurse Leadership, Nursing Education, Nursing Informatics, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

To take your nursing career to the next level, Nova Southeastern University’s online RN-to-MSN programs offer several specialization options. Based on your interests, you can specialize in advanced population health, executive nurse leadership, nursing education, nursing informatics, adult gerontology acute care, family health, or psychiatric mental health.

To graduate, you’ll require to complete credits ranging from 36 to 51, based on the specialization you choose. Regardless of the specialization, most students graduate within seven semesters.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission into your chosen online RN-to-MSN program, you’ll need to have an accredited BA or BS with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Besides, you’ll need to have an RN license which is current and active in the U.S. In addition, you must submit a resume and official transcripts.

Why Choose Nova Southeastern University Online RN-to-MSN

• The school offers some of the best online MSN programs in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• In addition to affordable tuition costs, the school offers several financial aid and scholarship opportunities.
• The school maintains strong ties with prominent hospitals and health centers. Therefore, you will be able to explore a variety of clinical opportunities to hone your professional skills.


14. SUNY Polytechnic Institute - Utica, NY


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education and Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

If you can earn two degrees, a BSN and an MSN within a short time, why wouldn’t you do it? Well, if you are an RN who is ready for the next step, then enrolling in SUNY Polytechnic Institute’s online RN-to-MSN programs can be a great idea. Here, you can enter either the nursing education or family health program, based on where you find your calling. Because both programs are offered at a fast pace, you will complete the coursework only on a full-time basis.

The nursing education program trains you in curriculum development, instructional design, measurement & assessment in nursing. On the other hand, if you opt for the family nurse practitioner program, you’ll learn about clinical pharmacology, nursing research methods, comprehensive health assessment, public health nursing, and family primary health care. Both programs include electives and a culminating experience.

Admission Requirements:

To be considered for any of these RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an accredited associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.2. Also, your RN license must be active in New York State. Besides, the school requires you to have completed at least 2000 hours of nursing work experience.

Why Choose SUNY Polytechnic Institute Online RN-to-MSN

• The school’s small-sized classes open up doors to close connections and networking with peers and faculty.
• SUNY Polytechnic Institute’s faculty comprises experts who bring their vast knowledge to the virtual classroom.
• Promising nursing students can gain membership into Sigma Theta Tau International Iota Delta Chapter 218 which is a platform to enhance professional development and leadership qualities.


15. Lewis University - Romeoville, IL


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Healthcare Systems Leadership, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Among the well-known accredited online RN-to-MSN programs in Illinois is Lewis University’s MSN pathway. To expand your nursing knowledge, the school offers three areas of focus, including nursing education, healthcare systems leadership & psychiatric mental health care.

Nursing education is ideal for students with a passion for teaching. This program comprises 40 credits and focuses on education theory, curriculum development & evaluation, and teaching methodology. On the other hand, the 36-credit leadership program emphasizes leadership strategies, dynamics of healthcare organizations, financial management, and evidence-based performance in healthcare. The psychiatric mental health program is 49-credit coursework that trains you in advanced psychiatric mental health practice for patients across the lifespan.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for any of Lewis’s RN-to-MSN online degree programs, you must foremost have an ADN with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Additionally, the school requires you to submit a resume, official transcripts, two recommendation letters, and a personal statement. Also, you must complete a course in statistics with a minimum grade of B.

Why Choose Lewis University Online RN-to-MSN

• Lewis University has played a significant role in the state’s healthcare by producing competent nurses for more than 40 years.
• With an extensive network of community healthcare centers in Chicago and across the state, the school provides students with diverse clinical experiences to face the real-world challenges of patient care.
• Being a military-friendly school, if you are from a defense background, then you can expect to receive several benefits.
• Lewis University offers affordable tuition costs. In addition, you will be able to apply for funding options, including, employer tuition assistance, alumni scholarship, and discounts for members of the Illinois Organization of Nurse Leaders.


16. Regis College - Weston, MA


Specialties Offered:

Adult Gerontology - Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology - Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Regis College offers one of the best online RN-to-MSN programs in MA. Here, based on your interests, you can choose either adult-gerontology care, family health, pediatrics, psychiatric mental health, or women’s health. Regardless of the RN-to-MSN NP program you enter, you will require completing credits ranging from 46 to 61, based on whether you are entering with a non-nursing bachelor's degree or without it.

Upon enrolling in any of these RN-to-MSN NP programs, you will complete core courses, including health assessment, evidence-based practice, community-based nursing, nursing theory, nursing leadership, advanced pathophysiology, health promotion, health policy, and pharmacology. Thereafter, you will complete courses in your chosen NP role.

Admission Requirements:

An ideal applicant to any of these RN-to-MSN NP online programs must have an active RN license. Aside from this, you must have an accredited associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Further, you may enter either with or without a non-nursing bachelor's degree.

Why Choose Regis College Online RN-to-MSN

• Regis offers you the benefit of studying in an intimate learning environment along with the vast resources of a large university.
• The school has earned the NLN’s recognition of being a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education.
• Regis is proudly one of the few RN-to-MSN online schools in MA that boasts excellent pass rates on the NP certification exams.
• You will be able to save tuition costs in several ways including, employee discounts, federal & military discounts, alumni discounts, financial aid, and graduate assistantship opportunities.


17. Sacred Heart University - Fairfield, CT


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Nursing Management & Executive Leadership, and Clinical Nurse Leader

Program Details:

If you are aspiring to a Magnet hospital position, then the best way forward is to obtain a master’s level education in nursing. Well, Sacred Heart University’s online RN-to-MSN programs, leading to careers such as nursing education, nursing management, or clinical nurse leadership can be an excellent option. Through a flexible online coursework, you’ll be able to gain specialized skills in your chosen role.

All these programs are offered six times a year, so you can begin when you are ready. Upon graduation, you will earn two degrees, a BSN and an MSN. Regardless of the program you choose, you can complete your coursework within two to six years, based on your preferred pace.

The MSN coursework comprises 15 credits of core courses and around 24 credits of specialization-specific courses. The core courses build your knowledge in healthcare policy, healthcare informatics, healthcare research, and evidence-based practice.

The nursing education courses prepare you for teaching positions, whereas the management program is focused on role development for nursing management & executive leadership. On the other hand, the clinical nurse leader-specific courses prepare you for a role as a clinical nurse leader in a variety of healthcare settings.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to Sacred Heart’s RN-to-MSN online programs, regardless of the specialization you must have an accredited ADN or a diploma in nursing. Besides, you must have an unencumbered in your practice state. Also, your GPA must be at least 3.0. In addition, the school requires you to submit a resume, a statement of goals, two recommendation letters, and official transcripts.

Why Choose Sacred Heart University Online RN-to-MSN

• Sacred Heart’s faculty have years of expertise in their respective practice field. Also, faculty members are well-versed in the online teaching platform to offer you a result-oriented virtual learning experience.
• The school offers a competitive tuition rate and also allows a generous transfer of credits. Therefore, you’ll be able to bring down the tuition costs and even graduate sooner.
• Here, you’ll be able to explore several funding options, including federal aid, military benefits, scholarships, and financial aid options.


18. University of Saint Francis - Joliet, IL


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administrator, and Nursing Educator

Program Details:

By obtaining your graduate nursing education from one of the best RN-to-MSN programs online, your MSN degree will be respected by employers. If you are ready to take your nursing career to the next level, then the University of Saint Francis offers you excellent RN-to-MSN options. Here, based on your interests, you can choose your MSN specialization from Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administrator, or Nursing Educator.

All the programs, regardless of the specialization, start with bridge courses, after which you complete MSN core and specialization-specific courses. In addition, you can take optional education courses worth 12 credits. By completing this optional coursework, you’ll be able to play teaching roles in nursing. To graduate, you’ll require completing around 36 to 47 credits, depending on the specialization you choose.

Admission Requirements:

These RN-to-MSN online degree programs are open to registered nurses who have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree. In addition, you must have an active RN license.

Why Choose University of Saint Francis Online RN-to-MSN

• University of Saint Francis has won many accolades and ranking among the military-friendly schools in the nation is one among them. What's more, the U.S. News & World Report recognizes the school as one of the best in the nation.
• The education you obtain at the University of Saint Francis is grounded in values of compassion and service.
• The school offers several internal and external scholarships to further reduce tuition costs.


19. West Texas A&M University - Canyon, TX


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Leadership in Nursing Systems, and Nurse Educator

Program Details:

Whether you are an RN with or without a non-nursing bachelor’s degree, West Texas A&M University’s online RN-to-MSN programs can be a great stepping stone to a fulfilling career either in primary care, nursing leadership, or nursing education.

The RN-to-MSN FNP program that prepares you to provide primary care to a diverse patient population requires the completion of 49 credits, whereas the leadership program comprises 40 credits. On the other hand, the nursing education program is 37-credit coursework.

Regardless of the program you choose, you’ll build a solid foundation in core topics of research methods in nursing, health policy, cultural diversity, and the knowledge and skills required for your chosen advanced nursing role.

Aside from this, you’ll require completing 16 to 19 credits worth of bridge courses before beginning with the graduate-level coursework. Upon graduation, you will earn an MSN and the eligibility to take the certification exam within your chosen population focus. However, a BSN is not conferred.

Admission Requirements:

West Texas A&M University’s RN-to-MSN online programs, regardless of the specialization are designed for registered nurses with an ADN or nursing diploma, and with or without a non-nursing baccalaureate degree. Your GPA must be at least 3.0. Besdies, your RN licnese must be valid in Texas. In addition, you must submit three letters of recommendation, a resume, and your official transcripts.

Why Choose West Texas A&M University Online RN-to-MSN

• The school’s program ranks among the best online MSN programs in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• West Texas A&M University nursing school’s master’s program is one of the largest MSN programs in Texas.
• Here, you’ll be able to access several funding resources to offset your tuition cost. To know your eligibility, you must contact the school’s financial aid office.


20. University of San Francisco - San Francisco, CA


Program Details:

University of San Francisco’s online RN-to-MSN program offers a quick route to master’s level nursing knowledge. Within as little as two years, this program prepares you to improve health outcomes at all levels of the population. You’ll skip the BSN in this fast-track program and graduate straight with an MSN. Because the program is offered in an asynchronous online format, you will be able to continue working while pursuing your education. Also, the 400 hours of clinical practicum can be conveniently completed at your current place of work. You’ll learn about the foundation of healthcare leadership, quality & safety improvement, health informatics, health policy & advocacy, and evidence-based practice knowledge.

Admission Requirements:

To be eligible for application, you must be a registered nurse who has an ADN. Also, it is preferred that you have an accredited non-nursing bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. However, you can apply even if you do not have a bachelor’s degree. Additionally, to fulfill the application requirements for this online RN-to-MSN degree program, you must submit a personal statement, a professional resume, two letters of recommendation, and your unofficial transcripts.

Why Choose University of San Francisco Online RN-to-MSN

• The small-sized classes of 14:1 allow close interaction between faculty and students. Therefore, you will be able to receive individualized attention under the mentorship of its accomplished faculty.
• University of San Francisco’s nursing school ranks #1 in the nation for student diversity as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• Because the school partners with more than 200 prominent healthcare organizations, you can explore clinical learning opportunities to sharpen your practical experience.


21. DePaul University - Chicago, IL


Specialties Offered:

Adult-Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration, and Nursing Education

Program Details:

DePaul University offers one of the best online RN-to-MSN programs in Illinois. Here, you can choose either adult gerontology care, family health, nursing administration, or nursing education, based on your interests and professional goals.

The adult-gerontology program trains you in the advanced care of adults and the elderly whereas the family nurse practitioner specialization prepares you for the primary care of individuals, families, and communities across the lifespan.

On the other hand, if you are inclined towards a non-clinical path, then the nursing administration program prepares you to play leadership roles in a healthcare organization. This program focuses on organizational behavior & human resources, strategic planning and leadership, and healthcare policy & delivery systems.

The nursing education program is perfect if you are aspiring to teach. Through this program, you’ll gain knowledge in learning theories, course development, role transition, and instructional presentation skills.

Admission Requirements:

The minimum requirements to apply to any of DePaul’s online RN-to-MSN programs include an accredited associate degree and an active RN license. Besides, applicants with a non-nursing bachelor’s degree may also apply. The minimum GPA to be eligible is 2.75. Also, the college requires you to have completed courses in statistics with at least a grade of C.

Why Choose DePaul University Online RN-to-MSN

• As a graduate of De Paul’s RN-to-MSN online program, you will join a large network of 3000 nurses who are serving patients across Chicago and beyond.
• The school’s online training is highly regarded by employers, no wonder graduates find desirable placements soon after graduation.
• Here, the small-sized classes and the latest technology make the online learning experience a rather fruitful one.
• DePaul University’s nursing school’s partnership with the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science brings in the latest patient care approaches to your online RN to MSN curriculum.
• The school of nursing has been leading nursing education in the state for more than 65 years now.


22. Franklin University - Columbus, OH


Specialties Offered:

Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Generalist, Nurse Administrator, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

If you are a registered nurse who desires to earn an MSN rather quickly, then Franklin University can be your go-to nursing school. Here, you can earn your generalist MSN within as little as 19 months. Aside from this if you want to play a specialized role, then you have the nurse practitioner and nurse administrator programs.

If you enroll in any of the RN-to-MSN NP online degree programs, you’ll require 30 to 31 months to graduate. Based on where you find your calling, you can choose either adult gerontology, family health, or psychiatric mental health. The coursework regardless of the NP specialization comprises 45 to 46 credits.

On the other hand, the nurse administrator program requires the completion of around 33 credits, in addition to 12 credits of bridge courses.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must have an accredited associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, the school requires you to have produced an active RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose Franklin University Online RN-to-MSN

• Because the school allows you to lock the tuition, you will not need to worry about rising costs because of inflation. Besides, here, the tuition costs are lower than most other similar programs in the state.
• By opting for any of the online RN-to-MSN programs, you will be eligible for an automatic scholarship of $2000.
• Franklin University’s nursing school employs expert faculty members who bring their years of experience to the online classroom.
• The advanced simulation technology that the program utilizes provides you with ample clinical training before you transition to real-world clinical training.


23. Western Governors University - Salt Lake City, UT


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Leadership & Management, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Education

Program Details:

Western Governors University’s MSN pathways are counted among the best online RN-to-MSN programs in UT. With three non-clinical specializations, you can choose either nursing leadership & management, nursing informatics, or nursing education.

Through any of these programs, you will not only gain specialized skills but will also earn a BSN before progressing to the MSN courses. In fact, as part of your undergraduate coursework, you’ll also complete five graduate-level courses for which you’ll be awarded a post-baccalaureate certificate. This certificate can enhance your resume while you are still completing the MSN courses.

The leadership & management program is designed for students aspiring for leadership roles in healthcare, whereas the nursing informatics program emphasizes informatics system analysis & design and data science & analytics. On the other hand, the nursing education program teaches you about assessment & evaluation strategies, curriculum design, and student-centered learning.

Admission Requirements:

If you are searching for RN-to-MSN online schools that do not require nursing work experience to qualify for admission, then here, you can apply even without any nursing work experience.

Why Choose Western Governors University Online RN-to-MSN

• Regardless of the online RN-to-MSN program you enroll in, at Western Governors University nursing school, you’ll be paying affordable tuition costs. Here, tuition is charged for each six-month term, during which you can take as many courses as you want without paying any extra fees.
• Graduates of the school report a satisfying learning experience, having almost all of them find suitable placements soon after graduation.
• Western Governors nursing school is a designated Center of Excellence in nursing education. Therefore you can expect high-quality online education that leads to a positive academic outcome.


24. Southern New Hampshire University - Manchester, NH


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education and Population Healthcare

Program Details:

At Southern New Hamshire University, you will be able to complete your MSN in nursing education or population healthcare. The school teaches you safe nursing practice, evidence-based practice, health promotion & disease prevention strategies, and patient safety & quality implementation.

Nursing education prepares you to influence the future workforce of nurses. Whereas, if you opt for population healthcare, you’ll gain skills that are required for the improvement of healthcare systems. Regardless of the RN-to-MSN online program you choose, you will be able to graduate within as little as 1.5 years.

Some of the common courses that you take include pathophysiology, advanced health assessment, and clinical reasoning. The nursing education curriculum focuses on teaching innovation, and curriculum foundations, whereas, the population healthcare program includes courses in healthcare informatics, population care management, and healthcare quality improvement.

Admission Requirements:

The school accepts applications on a rolling basis, so you can apply throughout the year. To start with, you must apply to the BSN program and after completing your BSN, you must apply to the MSN portion of your RN-to-MSN online program. To qualify for the MSN program, you must maintain a GPA of at least 3.5 in your undergraduate nursing courses. Aside from this, you must possess an active RN license in your state of practice.

Why Choose Southern New Hampshire University Online RN-to-MSN

• Southern New Hampshire nursing school’s online RN-to-MSN programs are fast-paced and offered at affordable tuition rates.
• As a student of any of these online programs, you will join a large family of students, alumni, faculty, and staff with whom you can network and build professional connections.
• Both these online RN-to-MSN programs are offered five times a year, so you can start when convenient.


25. Jacksonville University - Jacksonville, FL


Specialties Offered:

Clinical Nurse Educator, Leadership in Healthcare Systems, Nursing Informatics, and Healthcare Quality & Safety

Program Details:

Whether you are keen on taking the next step in your nursing career or desire to obtain a master’s level nursing education, at Jacksonville University, you’ll be able to earn two nursing degrees through a flexible online format. Counted among the best RN-to-MSN online programs in FL, here, you can choose your specialization from clinical nurse educator, leadership in healthcare systems, nursing informatics, or healthcare quality & safety. Regardless of the program you choose, you will graduate with two degrees within as little as 18 months.

Upon beginning your online RN-to-MSN program, you will first complete BSN courses that teach you concepts in professional nursing, evidence-based nursing, pathophysiology, nursing leadership & health, and community-focused nursing. Thereafter, you must complete the MSN courses that train you in vital topics such as nursing theory & research, healthcare information systems & organization, and delivery & policy in healthcare. Post that, you will continue with the program to complete courses in your chosen specialization.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to either of these online RN-to-MSN programs, you must have an active nursing license in the US. Also, you must have an accredited ADN or nursing diploma with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In addition, the nursing school requires you to submit your statement of purpose and letters of recommendation.

Why Choose Jacksonville University Online RN-to-MSN

• Jacksonville University maintains strong ties with prominent healthcare leaders. Therefore, here you can expect a wide variety of meaningful clinical experiences across the state.
• The small-sized classes allow close interactions with faculty and peers.
• Here, each course is eight weeks long, with courses being offered throughout the year. So, you’ll be able to start anytime through the year and if desired even take a break between courses.


26. Aspen University - Phoenix, AZ


Specialties Offered:

Forensic Nursing, Informatics, Administration & Management, Nursing Education, and Public Health

Program Details:

Out of all the online RN-to-MSN schools in the nation, Aspen University is the only school that offers an online RN-to-MSN program in forensic nursing. Alternatively, there are also options in informatics, administration & management, nursing education, and public health, so you can choose a program based on your interests.

These RN-to-MSN online programs train you in key competencies, including organizational & systems leadership, quality improvement & safety, informatics & healthcare technologies, health policy & advocacy, and interprofessional collaboration. Every program starts with bridge courses and then advances to graduate-level courses. The bridge courses train you in professional trends and issues in nursing, community health nursing, nursing research, health assessment, and nursing leadership & management.

All the programs end with a capstone project where you’ll apply your newly acquired knowledge.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must have an associate degree or diploma with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In addition, you must possess an unencumbered RN license. Also, the school requires you to have completed at least one year of nursing work experience. Besides, you must be prepared to submit your resume.

Why Choose Aspen University Online RN-to-MSN

• Aspen’s online RN-to-MSN programs come with affordable tuition costs, so you’ll graduate without breaking the bank. Also, the monthly payment plan at 0% interest further adds to the ease of payment.
• The school employs a highly acclaimed faculty who leave no stone unturned in ensuring students achieve a positive academic outcome.
• Here, you can complete your program either on a full-time or part-time basis.


27. South University - Savannah, GA


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Administrator, Nurse Educator, and Nursing Informatics

Program Details:

Whether you desire to enhance your patient care practice or aspire to influence healthcare, South University’s RN-to-MSN online programs offer multiple paths to help you reach your professional goals. If you find your calling in direct patient care, then you can choose either the family health or adult gerontology care program. Alternatively, if you are inclined towards indirect patient care, then you may want to enroll in either nursing administration, nursing education, or the nursing informatics program.

All programs start with 36 credits of BSN courses, after which you’ll complete 20 MSN credits, and then the specialization-specific courses. You’ll learn about nursing research, healthcare informatics, healthcare leadership, and health policy. The MSN courses strengthen your knowledge in core topics of advanced pathophysiology, health policy, advanced pharmacology, and nursing research methods.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to South University’s RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an associate degree with a minimum GPA of 2.5. Also, you must carry an unencumbered RN license in the U.S. Besides, you must be prepared to submit your official transcripts to complete the admission requirements.

Why Choose South University Online RN-to-MSN

• These RN-to-MSN online programs boast an excellent pass rate on the national certification exams.
• South University’s nursing school offers military benefits to students coming from a defense background.
• To make your graduate nursing education affordable, the school offers several funding options, including scholarships, grants, and funding opportunities.


28. Seton Hall University - Nutley, NJ


Specialties Offered:

Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration & Executive Nurse Leadership, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Seton Hall is counted among the best RN-to-MSN online schools in the nation because of the top-quality nurse leaders it produces. Here, based on your interests, you can obtain training either in adult-gerontology care, nursing administration, nursing leadership, pediatric primary care, or psychiatric mental health.

To graduate, regardless of the program, you will require completing around 49 credits. In addition, you will require completing 11-credit bridge courses before starting the graduate-level and specialization-specific courses.

By completing the program, regardless of the specialization, you’ll learn about nursing research, health promotion, clinical pathophysiology, pharmacology, health assessment, and advanced professional role development.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for any of these RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an associate degree or diploma with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Besides, you must submit official transcripts, a personal statement, a current resume, and two letters.

Why Choose Seton Hall University Online RN-to-MSN

• Seton Hall’s MSN program is ranked among the best in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• Here, the small-sized classes provide personalized attention and allow for close connections to develop between faculty and students.
• The RN to MSN training is grounded in Catholic values of service, care, and compassion. As a graduate, you will be prepared to offer holistic care to diverse patient populations.
• Seton Hall boasts of an excellent pass rate on the national certification exams.


29. Western University of Health Sciences - Pomona, CA


Specialties Offered:

Clinical Nurse Leader, Administrative Nurse Leader, and Ambulatory Care Nursing

Program Details:

Western University of Health Sciences’ online RN-to-MSN programs can take your nursing career to the next level without going back to school. Through 100% online classes, you’ll be able to complete your training within two to three years.

Here, you’ll obtain rigorous training in three advanced roles, depending on whether you choose, Clinical Nurse Leader, Administrative Nurse Leader, or Ambulatory Care Nursing. While the clinical nurse program trains you in enhancing patient outcomes, the administrative nurse leader program equips you with skills to manage and lead healthcare organizations. On the other hand, the ambulatory care nursing program prepares you with the skills to provide primary care in outpatient settings.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to either of these online RN to MSN programs, you must have an associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, the school requires you to have completed pre-requisite courses with a grade of C or better. In addition, you must possess an unencumbered RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose Western University of Health Sciences Online RN-to-MSN

• Here, you will be taught by top-notch faculty who have years of experience in the field of nursing.
• As a graduate, you will be able to be part of the nursing school’s large alumni network.
• Western University’s master's degree is ranked among the best in the nation as per reputed online publications.


30. The University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa, AL


Specialties Offered:

Nurse Administrator

Program Details:

If you’ve always aspired to play a leadership role in healthcare, then the University of Alabama’s online RN-to-MSN degree program will be a befitting choice. The 50-56 credit curriculum takes your ADN or nursing diploma straight to the master's level and equips you with skills to effectively play the role of a nurse administrator.

The program trains you in key topics of nursing informatics, community health nursing, organizational & systems leadership, research & evidence-based practice, health policy, and population health. You also obtain proficiency in leadership in nursing administration, health care systems & quality & safety, and advanced financing & strategic planning in health care. Finally, the program ends with an optional thesis.

Admission Requirements:

This online RN-to-MSN degree program requires you to possess an unencumbered RN license in the U.S. Besides, you must have completed an accredited associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Why Choose The University of Alabama Online RN-to-MSN

• The U.S. News & World Report recognizes the University of Alabama as a leader in online education.
• The school offers military benefits to students coming from the defense background.
• Here, you’ll complete your education with affordable tuition costs. Also, regardless of where you live, you’ll be paying in-state tuition costs.


31. Loyola University New Orleans - New Orleans, LA


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Do you wish to fast-track your nursing career into an advanced practice nursing field? If so, you’ll find Loyola University New Orleans’s online RN-to-MSN program a rather befitting choice. The program is offered with a specialization in family health.

To graduate with an MSN-FNP degree, you will require completing 48 credits and 720 hours of clinical practice. However, before you start with the graduate-level courses, you require completing bridge courses.

You will learn about population health management, advanced pathophysiology, health assessment, pharmacotherapeutics, and advanced research methods. In addition, you’ll learn about the primary care of individuals across their lifespans. Also, you’ll master skills in health informatics and finance.

Admission Requirements:

This online RN-to-MSN program is open to registered nurses who have an ADN or a diploma and a non-nursing bachelor's degree.

Why Choose Loyola University New Orleans Online RN-to-MSN

• The U.S. News & World Report lists this program among the best MSN programs in the nation.
• With a small student-to-faculty ratio, here you will be able to develop close bonds with faculty and your peers.
• At Loyola University New Orleans, almost 99% of students receive some sort of financial assistance to fund their education.


32. Clarkson College - Omaha, NE


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Healthcare Administration, Nursing Education, Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Clarkson College’s RN-to-MSN online programs are meant to easily accommodate the busy schedules of working nurses. Each program starts with the RN to BSN curriculum during which you’ll even complete a few graduate-level courses. You’ll be able to apply these courses toward your MSN degree. Here, based on your interests, you can enroll in either the Nursing Healthcare Administration, Nursing Education, Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, or Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program.

Regardless of the program you enter, you’ll gain expertise in several key topics such as the theories & concepts of advanced practice roles, healthcare delivery systems & managed care, application & evaluation of theory in nursing, nursing law & ethics, and research design & methods. Thereafter, you must complete 21 to 29 credit hours in your chosen specialization.

Admission Requirements:

The college accepts applications on a rolling basis, so the earlier you apply the better. To apply to your chosen RN-to-MSN online program, you must have an accredited ADN and a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, you must possess an active RN license which is valid and unencumbered in the U.S.

Why Choose Clarkson College Online RN-to-MSN

• To offset your education costs, you’ll be able to apply to the Nurse Faculty Loan Program.
• Clarkson College offers several scholarships and financial aid opportunities that you may apply for to further cut tuition costs.
• The school’s partnership with Nebraska Medicine opens up unique learning opportunities that even online students can explore if they desire to hone skills in interprofessional collaboration.


33. Ferris State University - Big Rapids, MI


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Nursing Administration, and Nursing Informatics

Program Details:

At Ferris State University, you can advance your nursing career either in education, administration or informatics, based on your interests and professional goals. While nursing education will prepare you to play an impactful role in influencing the future workforce of nurses, the nursing administration program trains you to manage the administrative affairs of a healthcare organization. On the other hand, the nursing informatics program equips you with skills to effectively use information technology to better patient outcomes.

The core courses that are common to all three online RN-to-MSN degree programs teach you organizational & systems leadership, health care systems, policy and advocacy, evidence-based practice, quality improvement & safety, and population health. Thereafter, you’ll complete nine credits in specialization-specific courses.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to your preferred RN-to-MSN online program, you must have an ADN with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Besides, your RN license must be valid and unencumbered. In addition, the school requires you to submit official transcripts and a current professional resume to complete the admission requirements.

Why Choose Ferris State University Online RN-to-MSN

• Ferris State offers affordable education and also ranks among the schools that offer the best value.
• The nursing school’s small-sized classes offer personalized attention under the mentorship of its expert faculty.
• Even though these are online programs, the school offers an engaging learning experience through participation in student organizations and membership in professional associations.


34. Queens University of Charlotte - Charlotte, NC


Specialties Offered:

Nurse Educator, Nurse Administrator, Clinical Nurse Leader, and Nursing Informatics

Program Details:

If you desire a student-centric online learning experience to complete your graduate-level nursing education, then Queens University of Charlotte can be a great option. Here, through its RN-to-MSN online programs, you’ll be able to specialize either in nursing education, nursing administration, nursing leadership, or nursing informatics.

Regardless of what you choose, your coursework comprises RN to MSN bridge and core courses before progressing to specialization-specific courses. The career-focused curriculum comprises 14 courses that can be completed in as little as 2.5 years. The six credit bridge courses strengthen your knowledge in population health nursing. Whereas the core courses teach you health policy, healthcare informatics, data interpretations, and research methods.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must have an associate degree from an accredited university. Also, you are required to submit all your official transcripts from all the earlier institutions attended. In addition, the school requires you to carry an unrestricted RN license to qualify for admission.

Why Choose Queens University of Charlotte Online RN-to-MSN

• Smaller classes and expert faculty mentorship make the online learning experience engaging and more effective.
• In addition to affordable tuition costs, these online RN-to-MSN degree programs offer several scholarships and financial aid opportunities. If eligible, you’ll be able to apply for employer reimbursement, grants, or veteran benefits.
• With an experience of more than 160 years, Queens University has a rich history of training quality graduates who are serving across the globe.


35. University of North Alabama - Florence, AL


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health Practitioner, Leadership, and Teaching/Learning

Program Details:

The University of North Alabama offers four online RN-to-MSN degree programs, including family health, psychiatric mental health, leadership, and nursing education. Regardless of the program you choose, you’ll learn about community health nursing, foundations of evidence-based practice, leadership & management, quality & safety, and nursing concepts, issues & theories.

If you opt for the family nurse practitioner program, you’ll be prepared to provide evidence-based primary care to individuals & families across the lifespan. The psychiatric mental health program trains you to treat mental health patients of all ages. While the leadership program equips you with skills to lead and manage a healthcare organization, the teaching/learning program makes you proficient in educating the future workforce of nurses.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must have an associate degree or a diploma from an accredited institution. Besides, the school requires you to have an unencumbered RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose University of North Alabama Online RN-to-MSN

• The tuition rate of the college is quite affordable, so you’ll graduate without breaking the bank.
• The University of North Alabama makes it to the top nursing schools in the U.S. News & World Report’s list. In addition, the school has made it to several ranking lists, including the best schools for veterans and also among the most innovative schools in the nation.
• To help you offset your education costs, the college offers several external and internal scholarships.


36. Lamar University - Beaumont, TX


Specialties Offered:

Administration and Education

Program Details:

As a nurse, if you want to stand out in the job market, then you must obtain graduate-level education. Lamar University’s online RN-to-MSN programs can be a great option to acquire the professional skills and knowledge to attain nursing leadership. With two in-demand fields, you can choose to become either a nurse administrator or a nurse educator. Regardless of the program, the curriculum comprises 58 credits which can be completed in as little as 36 months.

The coursework strengthens your core nursing knowledge and equips you with the skills to enhance evidence-based patient care and improve health.

The administration program teaches you to plan & organize healthcare delivery, and healthcare information systems, whereas the education program, emphasizes curriculum design and learning & teaching theories.

Admission Requirements:

To gain admission into either of Lamar’s RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an associate nursing degree or diploma with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In addition, your RN license must be current and unencumbered. Besides, the school requires you to submit official transcripts and the completion of pre-requisite courses.

Why Choose Lamar University Online RN-to-MSN

• Lamar University’s nursing school is one of the most distinguished schools not only in Texas but also in the nation.
• The 100% online format not only offers maximum flexibility but also helps you save some tuition dollars because of its affordable tuition costs.


37. Appalachian State University - Boone, NC


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education

Program Details:

Appalachian State University’s online RN-to-MSN program prepares you for a fulfilling career as a nurse educator. The program comprises 24 credits in advanced master's courses and 12 credits in nursing education-specific courses. In addition to the graduate-level courses, you’ll require completing bridge courses. The curriculum prepares you for a variety of roles in education and nursing research.

Some of the courses you take include contemporary issues in nursing, advanced health assessment, pathophysiology, nursing research, advanced pharmacology, nursing program development, and educational theories for nursing & informatics.

Admission Requirements:

To be eligible for application, you must have an accredited ADN or diploma in nursing. Your GPA must be at least 3.0. In addition, the school requires you to have an active RN license. Also, you must submit a resume and official transcripts.

Why Choose Appalachian State University Online RN-to-MSN

• Appalachian State University ranks among the top online graduate programs in the nation as per the U.S. News & World Report.
• Graduates of Appalachian’s RN-to-MSN online program are desired by employers for their exceptional professional preparedness.
• Here, the online coursework is highly engaging and rigorous. You will complete your education through highly interactive synchronous and asynchronous online classes.


38. East Tennessee State University - Johnson City, TN


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Administration, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Education, and Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

East Tennessee State University offers one of the well-known accredited online RN-to-MSN programs in TN. Here, based on where you find your calling, you can enroll in nursing administration, psychiatric mental care, nursing education, or family health.

With an emphasis on rural healthcare, regardless of the program you enroll in, you’ll graduate with exceptional skills in evidence-practice and interprofessional collaboration. All the programs are offered with full-time and part-time schedule options.

To begin with, you’ll first complete the MSN bridge courses, after which you’ll complete core courses in health assessment, nursing research, advanced role development, advanced pathophysiology, pharmacology, health promotion, and disease prevention. Thereafter, you’ll complete specialization-specific courses in your chosen nursing field.

Admission Requirements:

To apply, you must have an active RN license and a non-nursing bachelor's degree. Also, the school requires you to submit your official transcripts.

Why Choose East Tennessee State University Online RN-to-MSN

• The school boasts an excellent pass rate on national certification exams.
• With seven nurse-managed health centers, East State Tennesse University offers several service learning opportunities.
• There are several external & internal scholarships that eligible RN to MSN students can avail of to reduce the cost of their education.


39. Olivet Nazarene University - Bourbonnais, IL


Specialties Offered:

Transformational Leadership, Education, and Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

By pursuing an MSN, not only will you advance your knowledge of nursing, but you’ll also be able to climb the career ladder rather swiftly. Olivet Nazarene University’s online RN-to-MSN programs take your RN education seamlessly to the master's level. Besides, here, you can choose transformational leadership, education, or family nurse practitioner as your specialization, depending on where your passion lies.

Upon enrollment, you first complete 12 months of BSN core, followed by 24 to 36 months of MSN and specialization-specific courses. The common core courses train you in ethical decision-making, nursing informatics, and evidence-based practice. In addition, you’ll master skills in advanced pathophysiology, pharmacology, and health assessment.

The leadership program emphasizes transformational leadership, finance, and human resource management, whereas the education program teaches you curriculum design, teaching roles & strategies. The family nurse practitioner program prepares you for the healthcare management of patients across their lifespans.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to either of these three RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an ADN with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, you must submit all your transcripts to fulfill the application requirements.

Why Choose Olivet Nazarene University Online RN-to-MSN

• At Olivet Nazarene, you’ll gain faith-based education which is grounded in Christian values.
• Almost 99% of students at the university receive some sort of financial assistance.
• As a graduate of this school, you’ll join a large network of more than 40,000 alumni who are serving across the globe.


40. Mercy College of Ohio - Toledo, OH


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Leadership and Nursing Education

Program Details:

If you are inclined towards playing non-clinical roles in nursing leadership or nursing education, then enrolling in one of Mercy College of Ohio’s online RN-to-MSN degree programs can be a good idea. Through a well-designed rigorous curriculum, you are trained in vital topics of nursing informatics, population health assessment, evidence-based practice, and current nursing issues. In addition to the core courses, you’ll also complete RN to MSN bridge courses and specialization-specific courses.

While the nursing leadership program trains you in healthcare systems, leadership & strategic management, and financial management, the nursing education program, prepares you for teaching & learning strategies, curriculum design, and evaluation methods in nursing education.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission into either of Mercy’s RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an ADN with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, the school requires you to submit all official transcripts. In addition, you must possess an active RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose Mercy College of Ohio Online RN-to-MSN

• Being a Catholic institution, the nursing school trains you to provide holistic care and imbibes a service-oriented attitude in its RN to MSN graduates.
• The school offers several financial aid opportunities to make your education affordable.
• The Mercy College nursing school ranks among the top nursing schools in the country as per leading online publications.


41. Regis University - Denver, CO


Specialties Offered:

Leadership in Health Care Systems

Program Details:

At Regis University, you will obtain the proficiency to play leadership roles in a variety of healthcare environments. Counted among the best RN-to-MSN online programs in CO, the program takes nine semesters to complete.

The 51-credit coursework emphasizes illness & disease management, health promotion concepts, and healthcare organizations & systems. Some of the graduate-level courses you take include healthcare policy, population health, financial management, and healthcare organizations & systems leadership. The BSN section of the program includes four graduate-level courses that help you save time and tuition costs when completing the MSN courses. Upon completion of this online RN-to-MSN program, you’ll be prepared to impact healthcare delivery at all levels.

Admission Requirements:

The school accepts applications on a rolling basis, so you can apply anytime throughout the year. To qualify for admission, you must have a nursing diploma or an ADN from an accredited school. In addition, you must submit your resume and a copy of your active RN license.

Why Choose Regis University Online RN-to-MSN

• Being a Jesuit university, you’ll study in an environment where you’ll not only grow professionally but also personally.
• At Regis, you have a variety of options to fund your online RN-to-MSN program, including scholarships & grants, student loans, and employer discounts.
• If you want to gain a global outlook in nursing leadership, you can explore study abroad options offered by the nursing school.


42. University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh - Oshkosh, WI


Specialties Offered:

Nurse Educator and Clinical Nurse Leader

Program Details:

At the University of Wisconsin, you’ll be able to seamlessly complete your BSN and MSN coursework without putting a hold on your current job. 100% online education and clinical training within your home community make it rather convenient for working nurses to accommodate attending classes into their busy lives.

Here, you can choose from two RN-to-MSN online programs, including Nurse Educator or Clinical Nurse Leader. Regardless of the program you choose, you can tailor the pace of your study based on your preference, however, you must complete the program within a maximum of five years.

The nursing education program is a 60-credit program that focuses on the education process in nursing. On the other hand, the clinical nurse leader program comprises a total of 60 credits and focuses on population health improvement and the prevention of diseases.

Admission Requirements:

Admission to either of these RN-to-MSN online programs requires you to have an associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In addition, the school requires you to carry an unencumbered RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Online RN-to-MSN

• Both the RN-to-MSN online programs boast an excellent pass rate on the national certification exam.
• The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh offers several study-abroad opportunities that you can explore to enhance your learning experience.
• With the school awarding more than 110 scholarships each year, you may be able to avail of one if eligible.


43. MCPHS University - Boston, MA


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

Do you know that a family nurse practitioner plays a vital role in bridging the gap in primary care across the country? If you are passionate about serving patients in primary care settings, then MCPHS University can help you enter this fulfilling field rather quickly.

The online RN-to-MSN program is offered entirely online and comprises bridge courses, in addition to MSN core and FNP-specific courses. During the first year of the program, you’ll complete bridge courses after which you learn graduate core topics, including advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, advanced health assessment, and advanced family primary care.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to this online RN-to-MSN program, you must have an associate degree with a minimum GPA of 2.7. Also, your RN license must be valid in your state of practice. To fulfill the admission requirements, the school requires you to submit your official transcripts, a resume, and a personal statement.

Why Choose MCPHS University Online RN-to-MSN

• The school emphasizes practical training and ensures RN to MSN students leave with the utmost professional preparedness before transitioning to the workforce.
• At MCPHS, you’ll be mentored under the expertise of an experienced faculty who have years of practice experience.
• Because the nursing school is part of the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, the training that you receive integrates interprofessional collaborative learning, thereby positioning you as a competent member of a healthcare care team.


44. Wilkes University - Wilkes-Barre, PA


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Details:

When considering a career advancement in nursing, entering into a field of direct patient care will not only be fulfilling but also highly remunerative. At Wilkes University, you can choose from several RN-to-MSN online degree programs, including family health, adult gerontology primary care, or psychiatric mental health care. Regardless of the choice you make, you’ll seamlessly go from RN to MSN within as little as 36 months. While the FNP program comprises a total of 19 courses, the AGPCNP program consists of 17 courses and if you opt for the PMHNP program, you’ll complete a total of 18 courses.

Some of the common core courses you take strengthen your knowledge in advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, diagnostic reasoning, and advanced health assessment. Also, you’ll learn about the health perspectives of culturally diverse, rural, and underserved populations. In addition to graduate core courses, each program also includes bridge courses before the MSN and specialization-specific courses.

Admission Requirements:

To gain admission into either of these RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an associate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0. In addition, your RN license must be unencumbered. The school also requires you to submit a current resume and all your official transcripts.

Why Choose Wilkes University Online RN-to-MSN

• Being a military-friendly school, if you come from the defense background, you will be able to avail several financial benefits.
• These RN-to-MSN online programs boast consistently high pass rates on the national certification exams.
• At Wilkes University, the cost of education is not only affordable but is also of high quality. Besides, the faculty members that teach you are distinguished and of high caliber.


45. Gonzaga University - Spokane, WA


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Leadership in Healthcare

Program Details:

Do you aspire to play leadership roles in healthcare such as that of a clinical nurse manager, chief nursing officer, director of nursing, clinical nurse leader, and many more such roles? If so, then you are in the right place as Gonzaga University’s RN-to-MSN online program can be an excellent option. Through this program, the school prepares you for nursing leadership in healthcare.

The RN to MSN curriculum comprises 45 credits and on average requires nine semesters to complete. Also, as part of your training, you’ll complete a two-day on-campus immersion where you’ll hone your clinical skills. While the bridge courses teach you about nursing research and community health, the MSN courses train you in healthcare informatics, data management, evidence-based practice, and healthcare quality improvement. You’ll also learn about the business of healthcare management, healthcare ethics, and nursing leadership.

Admission Requirements:

Gonzaga’s online RN-to-MSN program is open to registered nurses who hold an associate degree in nursing. Also, you must possess an active and unencumbered RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose Gonzaga University Online RN-to-MSN

• Gonzaga University’s online RN to MSN program is rooted in Jesuit values of service and compassionate care.
• The school has been offering high-quality online education since 2004. The rich experience of all these years has helped refine this program, thereby helping you obtain high-quality RN to MSN education.
• In addition to affordable tuition costs, this school offers several scholarships and financial aid opportunities to further help cut tuition costs.
• In addition to immersions, Gonzaga also offers study abroad opportunities to further enhance your professional skills.


46. Stevenson University - Stevenson, MD


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education, Nursing Leadership/Management and Population-Based Care Coordination

Program Details:

Preparing you for three highly rewarding careers, Stevenson University’s accredited RN-to-MSN online programs prepare you for roles in nursing education, nursing leadership, or population-based care coordination, depending on your preferred area.

If you choose the nursing education program, you’ll learn about curriculum design and teaching & learning strategies, whereas the nursing leadership program emphasizes healthcare finance, quality management and organizational behavior in healthcare. On the other hand, the population-based care coordination program, makes you proficient in managerial epidemiology & statistics, solving professional & legal issues in population-based care.

Admission Requirements:

To gain admission, you must foremost have a current RN license. In addition, you must have an accredited RN license with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. The school also requires you to submit your official transcripts ad a personal statement.

Why Choose Stevenson University Online RN-to-MSN

• Stevenson University’s online RN-to-MSN programs are counted among the shortest in Maryland. Besides, with six start dates, you can start your studies when you are ready.
• Regardless of the RN to MSN program you choose, you’ll graduate without breaking the bank as the school not only offers affordable tuition costs but also offers generous funding options that are exclusive to RN to MSN students. Moreover, with strong partnerships with several community colleges, hospitals & organizations, if you are a transfer student or employee, you can further avail of a special discount.
• The school offers individualized attention in its small-sized virtual classes. Besides, with an expert faculty, you’ll be able to make the most of your learning experience over here.


47. Northwest Nazarene University - Nampa, ID


Specialties Offered:

Family Nurse Practitioner and Leadership & Education

Program Details:

Northwest Nazarene University offers one of the best online RN-to-MSN programs in ID. Here, based on your professional goals and interests, you can either enroll in the family nurse practitioner or the leadership & education program.

While the FNP program trains you to provide evidence-based care to patients in a variety of primary care settings, the leadership & education program prepares you for two fulfilling roles of a nurse leader and nurse educator.

Regardless of the RN-to-MSN online program you choose, your curriculum comprises bridge courses, MSN core courses, and specialization-specific courses.

Admission Requirements:

To qualify for admission, you must be a registered nurse with an unencumbered RN license in the U.S. In addition, you must have at least an accredited ADN or nursing diploma with or without a non-nursing bachleors degree.

Why Choose Northwest Nazarene University Online RN-to-MSN

• With a collective experience of more than 160 years, Northwest Nazarene University’s faculty members bring a rich learning experience to the online learning classroom.
• Your RN to MSN education will be grounded in Christ-based values of service and compassion.
• You will study in a virtual class as part of a cohort, closely interacting with other like-minded students and forging strong connections.


48. Mercy College - Dobbs Ferry, NY


Specialties Offered:

Nursing Education and Nursing Administration

Program Details:

If you are shortlisting the well-known accredited RN-to-MSN online programs in NY, then you must certainly add Mercy College’s RN-to-MSN programs to your list. With two programs, you can choose either nursing education or nursing administration, based on the non-clinical role that inspires you.

The nursing education program equips you with the knowledge and skills required for faculty positions. On the other hand, the nursing administration program trains you to manage the complex environment of a healthcare organization.

Admission Requirements:

To be eligible for either of these online RN-to-MSN programs, you must have an ADN and a non-nursing bachelor's degree. Your GPA must not be less than 3.0. Also, you are required to carry an active RN license in the U.S.

Why Choose Mercy College Online RN-to-MSN

• As a graduate of Mercy College, you will have the advantage of joining the large alumni network of more than 64,000 graduates.
• You can enroll either in the part-time or full-time schedule, based on your preference.
• You can earn a tuition discount of 15%, provided you are an employee of any of Mercy’s partner hospitals or a member of the New York State Nurses Association.


49. Nebraska Methodist College - Omaha, NE


Specialties Offered:

Care Coordinator, Nurse Executive, Nursing Informatics, and Nurse Educator

Program Details:

If you are keen on enhancing your nursing knowledge and skills then completing your master's education is the way forward. Nebraska Methodist College offers some of the best RN-to-MSN online programs in NE, that seamlessly take you from an RN to a master's prepared nurse leader. Here, you can choose from four program options, including Care Coordinator, Nurse Executive, Nursing Informatics, or Nurse Educator.

Regardless of the program you opt for, you will first complete bridge courses, including nursing assessment, nursing leadership, population health, and nursing research methods. Thereafter, you’ll complete the MSN core and courses in your chosen area of focus. To graduate, you’ll require completing a total of 54 credits.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to either of these RN-to-MSN online programs, you must have an associate degree with a GPA of at least 2.5. Also, your RN license must be active and unencumbered in the U.S. Besides, the school requires you to have completed a list of prescribed prerequisites.

Why Choose Nebraska Methodist College Online RN-to-MSN

• The nursing school has a rich history of more than 120 years of producing competent nursing professionals.
• To help you cut tuition costs, Nebraska Methodist nursing school offers several funding options, including, financial aid opportunities, scholarships, grants, loans, and employee education benefits.
• Here, because the faculty members are highly experienced, they bring valuable insights to the virtual classroom.


50. Union University - Jackson, TN


Specialties Offered:

Administration, Education and Nurse Practitioner (Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner)

Program Details:

Whether you aspire to a leadership role, are keen on influencing future nurses, or simply want to enhance patient care, at Union University, you can obtain proficiency in your preferred nursing role. Counted among the best online RN-to-MSN programs in TN, here, you can choose from four program options, including Administration, Education, Family Nurse Practitioner, or Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse.

Regardless of the online RN-to-MSN degree program you choose, you’ll first complete bridge courses, followed by core and your chosen program-specific courses. Some of the common courses you take include advanced nursing research & evidence-based practice, health systems & nursing leadership, healthcare informatics, and theory & ethics for advanced nursing practice.

If you choose the administration program, you’ll master resources management, organizational behavior & leadership, and nursing quality management. On the other hand, the education program trains you in curriculum design, educational strategies, and educational assessment & evaluation. If you enroll in either of the nurse practitioner programs, you’ll master skills in evidence-based care and management of healthcare within your chosen population focus.

Admission Requirements:

The school accepts applications throughout the year because of its rolling application process. To qualify, you must have an associate's or diploma in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Also, you can apply with a non-nursing bachelor's degree or without it. Besides, you must possess an active and unencumbered RN license in TN.

Why Choose Union University Online RN-to-MSN

• Here you’ll receive Christ-centric, people-focused education that prepares you to provide holistic patient care across diverse healthcare settings.
• Based on your preference, you can complete your chosen RN-to-MSN online degree program either on a part-time or full-time basis.
• The small-sized classes provide an intimate learning environment where you can closely interact and connect with your peers and faculty.
• Union University boasts of an excellent placement rate, having almost all its RN to MSN graduates find suitable placements right after graduation.


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CAREER OPPORTUNITIES FOR ONLINE RN TO MSN GRADUATES


Obtaining a master’s degree in nursing can advance your career significantly. As noted above, the majority of MSN specializations available through these types of programs tend to be in fields like nursing informatics, nursing education, and nursing leadership. However, if you’re interested in advanced clinical practice, many schools offer MSN-prepared RNs the opportunity to enroll in certificate programs that will prepare them to become clinical nurse practitioners in one year or less.

As a nursing informatics specialist, you can work in healthcare facilities and academic institutions or be employed in the private sector as a clinical analyst, a health information specialist, or a systems administrator. Many nurse educators work as clinical instructors in hospital settings, updating nurses and other healthcare workers on the latest techniques and protocols; nurse educators also work as instructors in nursing schools. Nurse leaders assume nurse management jobs in hospitals, clinics, and community healthcare facilities.



AVERAGE EARNINGS FOR ONLINE RN TO MSN GRADUATES


An MSN will boost your earnings significantly. As an RN with no graduate degree, your average hourly wage is $30 an hour or $64,751 a year, but as an RN with an MSN, you’ll make $45.19 an hour, which works out to $7,830 a month or $94,000 annually. An MSN can raise your earning capacity by more than 46 percent.

Per Hour $45.19
Per Month $7,830
Per Year $94,000
(Source: payscale.com)



JOB MARKET FOR ONLINE RN TO MSN GRADUATES


As an RN, you’re already in a highly sought-after occupation. Most of your professional opportunities, though, may lay in floor nursing or as a go-to in a private physician’s practice, and clearly, you’d like to move away from these types of jobs. Don’t worry! Once you earn your MSN, there will still be a huge demand for your services.

According to the Bureau for Labor Statistics, the demand for nurse managers and other healthcare administrators is expected to grow by 32 percent over the next 10 years. The demand for nursing informaticists and other healthcare information specialists will grow by 10 percent while the demand for nurse educators and other healthcare educators will grow by 13.2 percent. Indeed, many experts believe that increasing the supply of nurse educators is the key to solving the worsening shortage of nurses that’s currently reaching crisis levels in the U.S. since nurse educators so often end up teaching at nursing schools.



USEFUL ORGANIZATIONS & ASSOCIATIONS FOR ONLINE RN TO MSN GRADUATES


Once you’ve graduated with an MSN, affiliation with the following organizations can provide you with networking and professional education opportunities:

American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP):

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) is the premier advocacy organization in the U.S. for advanced practice nurses.

American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM):

The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) represents sets practice standards for certified midwives and certified nurse midwives in the U.S.

American Nurses Association:

The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the preeminent organization for professional nurses in the U.S. Its subsidiary branch, American Nurses Credentialing Center, determines the credentialing requirements for various nursing specialties.

American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses (ASPAN):

Nurses who work in pre-anesthesia care, post-anesthesia care, ambulatory surgery, and pain management are represented by the American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses (ASPAN).

American Nursing Informatics Association (ANIA):

The American Nursing Informatics Association (ANIA) supports the professional interests of individual nurses and corporations who work with healthcare data.



Bottomline


If you’re a registered nurse who’s graduated from a two-year program, why go back to school to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing when you could earn a master’s degree in nursing in the same amount of time? Enrolling in one of the best online RN to MSN programs will open the door to a variety of professional specializations that can help ensure you keep growing professionally.



Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Our Expert


1. What prerequisites should I complete to prepare for graduate-level coursework in an online RN to MSN program?

The more courses you can transfer over from an accredited school, the fewer courses you’ll be required to take as part of your graduate school studies. RN-to-MSN program prerequisites typically include classes in statistics, nutrition, psychology, literature, and communication.


2. I earned my associate nursing degree from a school that did not have national accreditation. Can I still apply to an online RN to MSN program?

The two agencies that accredit nursing programs in the U.S. on a national basis are the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), but a number of agencies like the New England Commission of Higher Education and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges offer what’s known as regional nursing accreditation. Many two-year nursing associate degree programs have some sort of regional accreditation but most hospital diploma programs do not.

Transferability of credits is a major hurdle for RNs educated in either of those two venues who are seeking to continue their education. Research the transfer policies at the schools to which you’re interested in applying very carefully. The truth is your RN to MSN program may not accept either your degree or your credits if the program you went to was not nationally accredited. If they accept your degree but not your credits, you may be able to take your prerequisites over at an accredited school. If they won’t accept your degree, though, you should not apply to an RN to MSN program because you probably won’t be accepted. Chances are you will have to begin your nursing education again from scratch.


3. Is work experience a prerequisite for getting accepted into an online RN to MSN program?

Professional experience is an important part of any RN to MSN program application. Essentially, these programs are designed to let you cut to the front of the line, and the application committee wants to make sure you have the right chops to do that. Experience that’s closely related to the field you’re hoping to specialize in will make you more competitive. Graduates of two-year programs who don’t have work experience should consider applying to a traditional BSN program.


4. Is the GRE required for acceptance into an online RN to MSN program?

Many online graduate nursing programs do not require the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Check the requirements of the schools you’re interested in applying to carefully. If your school does require GRE test scores, consider taking a GRE prep class.


5. Will I have to do clinical rotations in an online RN to MSN program?

The clinical rotation requirement varies among online RN to MSN programs. Some schools will allow you to apply the clinical rotations you already did in your basic nursing program to these requirements while others may let you use the time you’re spent working at a nursing job. When additional clinical hours are required, in most cases, your school will allow you to perform them at a hospital or clinic that is close to where you live.


6. If I do an RN to MSN program, will I get an actual BSN degree?

This varies according to the RN to MSN program. Some schools will bypass the BSN degree altogether while others will award it either at the time you’ve completed the equivalent of your online BSN studies or at the same time you receive your MSN degree.


Pattie Trumble, MPP, MPH
Pattie Trumble is a nurse who worked in both California and New York for many years as an emergency room nurse. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley, and an Associate Degree in Nursing from the Samuel Merritt Hospital School of Nursing. After 10 years of providing direct care, she went back to school and earned concurrent Master’s degrees in both public policy and public health from the University of California, Berkeley. Thereafter, she worked for various public health agencies in California at both the community and state levels providing economic and legislative analysis.