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35 Best RN-to-BSN Programs (Online & Campus) in the Nation – 2022

Written By: Darby Faubion BSN, RN

Are you a registered nurse looking to advance your career but feeling unsure of where to start? Perhaps you have heard of RN-to-BSN programs but don’t know how they work. Maybe you have asked yourself, “What are the best RN-to-BSN degree programs in the nation?” If this sounds anything like you, this article has all the information you need. As you continue reading, you will find information about the 35 best accredited online and campus RN-to-BSN programs in the nation for 2022, including admission criteria, sample curriculum, and ways to improve your chances of acceptance.



A Registered Nurse-to-Bachelor of Science in Nursing program is a nursing program that allows registered nurses with an associate degree to advance to the highest undergraduate nursing degree, Bachelor of Science. RN-to-BSN programs take currently licensed registered nurses beyond bedside nursing to give them a broader view of nursing and wider scope of practice. As a student in an RN-to-BSN program, you will learn about nursing management and leadership and develop skills to prepare you for further study in graduate school.


There are pros and cons to every type of college program, including accredited RN-to-BSN programs. Here, let’s consider some of the advantages of choosing this pathway to further your career.

1. BSN nurses make more money:

Entry-level BSN nurses earn about $5,000 more each year than associate degree registered nurses. With experience, your income can continue to increase.

2. Get ahead of the anticipated BSN requirement for entry-level RNs:

77% of employers prefer to hire registered nurses who possess a BSN degree, with 44% requiring the degree. Although earning a BSN is not yet mandatory, there remains a push for entry-level nurses to have a BSN degree. It is especially important as hospitals seek Magnet Status, and one of the criteria for Magnet recognition is to employ BSN nurses.

3. More opportunities for advancement:

After earning your BSN, you will have more opportunities to advance to management and leadership positions.

4. You can choose a specialty focus area:

Baccalaureate-prepared nurses can choose to focus on a specific area of care, such as pediatrics, geriatrics, or cardiology. This means you have the chance to build your career around your personal interests and goals.

5. A BSN degree will help lay the foundation for graduate studies:

If you aspire to one day earn a master’s or doctorate in nursing, an RN-to-BSN program is an excellent way to prepare you for transition into one of these graduate programs.

6. RN-to-BSN programs offer flexibility:

Most RN-to-BSN programs offer online options or little on-campus study, which makes learning flexible and at your own pace. The flexibility these programs offer makes it possible to continue working while pursuing your degree.

7. Finish your BSN in less time:

Most accredited RN-to-BSN programs can be completed in 12 to 15 months, making it possible for you to step into leadership roles more quickly.


Although RN-to-BSN degree programs present some great opportunities, there are also a few disadvantages you may encounter. The following are a few of the disadvantages you may find associated with these types of programs.

1. You may not have enough time to do the things you want to do.

While RN-to-BSN programs have flexible schedules, many students in these programs continue to work while enrolled in school. When you consider the amount of time you dedicate to work and then must dedicate to school, you may feel there is little time for much else.

2. Long-term advancement opportunities may be limited.

This is not to say you will not advance your career or find the perfect job. However, if you want a more autonomous role or upper-management position, you may find that a graduate degree is more fitting to help you meet the criteria for those jobs.

3. The program can cost several thousands of dollars.

While the cost of RN-to-BSN programs is not nearly as high as traditional BSN programs, they are not free either. Consider your current income, and how much you can spend from your own savings or income, and think about applying for


RN-to-BSN programs vary in length. Whether you enroll part-time or full-time or require on-campus or face-to-face clinicals may impact the amount of time it takes you to graduate. Most RN-to-BSN programs take between 12 and 24 months to complete. The following are a few examples of how long it takes to complete some of our featured programs.

The RN-to-BSN program at the University of Louisville offers flexibility and convenience. Here, you will complete 11 courses totaling 31 credit hours and complete the program in approximately 20 months.

At the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, students can earn a Bachelor of Science degree through the online RN-to-BSN program in as little as 12 months of full-time study.

Virginia Commonwealth University students complete 39 upper-level nursing courses and can graduate in as few as six semesters.

Students enrolled in the RN-to-BSN program at Clemson University can graduate in as few as 12 months. This timeframe is contingent upon all general education and nursing prerequisites being complete before beginning the upper-level nursing component.

The University of Alabama in Huntsville offers another of our featured accredited RN-to-BSN degree programs. The program includes 26 credit hours of upper-division nursing coursework and can be completed in 12 months.


RN-to-BSN bridge programs can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $40,000 or more. A few things to keep in mind are whether the schools charge in-state and out-of-state tuition and how many credits you can transfer, which could reduce your cost. The following are some examples of the cost of a few of our featured RN-to-BSN programs.

The RN-to-BSN program at the University of Maryland charges tuition on a per-semester basis. Students who are Maryland residents pay approximately $4,598 per semester, while out-of-state students pay $18,869. Students can complete the program in as few as two semesters making the program cost $9,196 for in-state students and $37,738 for non-residents.

At Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, students pay tuition on a per-credit-hour basis. The rate, including tuition and fees, is $914.50 per credit hour for Texas residents and $1,322.50 for non-residents. The total estimated tuition and fees for the 30-credit hour program is $27,435 (residents) or $39,675 (non-residents).

Tuition for the online RN-to-BSN program offered at Ohio University costs $307 per credit hour for Ohio residents and $312 for out-of-state residents. Students classified as Ohio residents who meet specific criteria may receive the benefit of state-supported education incentives, which could greatly reduce or eliminate the cost of the program. Students in the program complete 31 credit hours, making the cost of the program $9,517 and $9,675 for residents and non-residents, respectively.

Students enrolled in the University of New Mexico’s accredited RN-to-BSN program who have completed all general education and pre-nursing courses pay $10,757.40 for the program. Students who have not completed all general education or pre-nursing courses pay $362.16 per credit hour for any outstanding courses.

The RN-to-BSN program at the University of Louisville calculates tuition on a per-credit-hour basis. Active-duty military members pay $250 per credit hour and non-military students pay $375. The program requires 31 credit hours, making the cost $7,750 for military personnel and $11,625 for non-military students.


The graduation requirements for accredited RN-to-BSN programs usually include that students must complete between 120 and 150 credit hours. However, this number may vary, depending on your state’s Board of Nursing regulations. Most students need to only complete the upper-division nursing courses for the BSN curriculum. The following are examples of the credit requirements for some of this article’s featured RN-to-BSN programs.

Ohio University offers one of the best accredited RN-to-BSN programs in the U.S. Students must have a minimum of 120 credits to graduate. After meeting general education and lower-level nursing coursework, which is typically completed in the associate or diploma program, students complete 31 credits of coursework from nine core upper-level nursing classes.

Students in the University of Texas Health Science Center RN-to-BSN program earn at least 120 credits before the BSN is conferred. These credits include 60 prerequisite courses, 29 credits for advanced placement for having an active RN license, and they earn 31 final credits from upper-level nursing coursework over the course of two to five semesters.

The University of Missouri Sinclair School of Nursing offers an accredited RN-to-BSN program that students can complete with as few as 26 nursing credits.

After completing general education and nursing prerequisites, students in the RN-to-BSN program at the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, complete 31-semester credits. Students must earn a total of 120 credits before the BSN degree is conferred.

Auburn University’s accredited RN-to-BSN program offers a curriculum designed to promote success by providing concepts directly related to baccalaureate-level nursing practice. Students in this exceptional program complete 31 credit hours of coursework delivered in six classes.


Nursing schools establish the required curriculum for their RN-to-BSN bridge programs, based on state and national guidelines. Although the coursework for programs may vary somewhat, the typical coursework is similar. Some classes you may take in one of these programs include the following.

• Health Assessment and Promotion
• Professional Nursing Practice
• Nursing Excellence
• Evidence-Based Nursing Practice
• Community Health Nursing

The following are sample course requirements for some of our featured RN-to-BSN programs.

At Pennsylvania State University, students engage in an online curriculum that requires completing 42 core course credits, in addition to general education credits and credits earned by portfolio verification, which total 120 credits to confer the BSN. The following are examples of some of the courses students in Penn State’s RN-to-BSN program take.

• Principles of Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice
• Advanced Health Assessment for the Registered Nurse
• Transition and the Professional Nursing Role
• Health Concepts for Adults with Complex Healthcare Needs
• Integrated Concepts in Nursing Practice

The University of Michigan’s RN-to-BSN curriculum requires students to earn a total of 120 credits. Students receive 60 elective/transfer credits, 30 prior learning credits from their previous Associate or diploma in nursing program, and earn 30 credits at UM for the RN-to-BSN component. Some of the classes students take are as follows.

• BSNs Promoting Health Across the Care Curriculum
• Genetics: Transforming Healthcare
• BSN Impact on Healthcare
• Community and Population Health
• Integrative Studies in Social Science

At the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing RN-to-BSN program, students complete 27 credits, including a 14-week capstone course.

The curriculum includes the following courses.

• Health Issues of Vulnerable and Marginalized Populations
• Informatics for Professional Nurses
• Scientific Basis for Evidence-Based Practice
• Nursing as a Professional Leader and Manager
• Focus on Community


Accrediting agencies, such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education require all post-licensure BSN programs to include a direct care component. In many accredited RN-to-BSN programs, the direct care experience is weaved into courses such as Community Health and Transitions to Professional Nursing. The following are clinical requirements at some of the best RN-to-BSN programs in the nation.

At Ohio University, students enrolled in the RN-to-BSN program complete a capstone nursing course, including a mandatory project. The capstone project is designed to facilitate transition into baccalaureate-level nursing.

Michigan State University’s RN-to-BSN students complete 90 hands-on clinical hours. They earn 45 hours in each of two classes: Community and Population Health and Leadership Immersion.

Students in the Texas Women’s University RN-to-BSN program earn 90 clock hours of clinicals divided into 45 hours of hands-on clinicals and 45 hours of professional project.


Admission criteria for RN-to-BSN programs is determined by the nursing school. Although requirements may differ a bit, there are some criteria that are similar from one school or program to the next. The following are some examples of admission criteria of accredited RN-to-BSN programs.

• Have an associate degree or diploma in nursing from an accredited institution of higher education
• Possess a current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse
• Minimum cumulative grade point average from previous college coursework (Most schools look for at least a 3.0)
• Submit two or three letters of professional recommendation
• Provide a current resume or curriculum vitae
• Prepare a Statement of Intent

Admission criteria for the RN-to-BSN program offered at Texas Tech University Health Science Center include the following.

• Prospective students must possess a license to practice as a registered nurse upon application to the program.
• Minimum cumulative nursing grade point average of 2.5 or higher
• All prerequisites must be completed with a minimum grade of “C” before beginning the program

The University of Alabama Capstone College of Nursing welcomes students to its RN-to-BSN program who meet the following admission criteria.

• Applicants must live and be licensed in the state where the Capstone College of Nursing is authorized to offer online education.
• Possess an associate degree in nursing from a school of nursing accredited by the CNEA or ACEN
• Demonstrate a minimum 2.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale for all lower-division nursing prerequisites
• Hold an active RN license in your state of licensure

At George Washington University, applicants who meet the following admission requirements are considered for admission to the RN-to-BSN program.

• Have 84 credits of previous general education/prerequisite coursework from a regionally accredited college or university
• Submit two letters of professional recommendation
• Current resume
• Submit a Statement of Purpose
• Preferred GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale on all college coursework
• Hold an active, unencumbered RN license


Accreditation is the most important factor to consider as you research RN-to-BSN programs. As you look for the right program, make sure they are accredited by either the Accreditation Commission for Education Nursing or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

1. Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN):

The ACEN accredits nursing programs and has a primary focus on supporting the interests of nursing practice, nursing education, and the public. The Commission is recognized by the United States Department of Education as a specialized accrediting agency. It accredits nursing education programs in secondary, post-secondary and hospital-based organizations that offer diplomas, certificates, or degrees.

2. Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE):

The CCNE is recognized by the United States Secretary of Education as a national accrediting agency. The CCNE promotes the quality and integrity of undergraduate and graduate nursing programs and residency and fellowship programs in nursing.


(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 35 best accredited online and campus RN-to-BSN programs in the nation for the year 2022.)

1. University of Maryland - Baltimore, MD

Program Details:

The University of Maryland offers one of the best RN-to-BSN programs in the nation. The program offers currently licensed registered nurses with an associate degree to earn a BSN in as little as two semesters.

The University of Maryland redesigned its BSN curriculum to meet The Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing Education, established by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). Students learn in an online format either part-time or full-time.

Eligibility criteria include that you must have 59 general education and prerequisite credits. You will receive 30 credits for holding a valid RN license. The RN-to-BSN curriculum then requires each student to earn 31 credits and complete 90 clinical hours.

Applicants must complete a minimum of two science prerequisites such as Chemistry with lab, Anatomy and Physiology with lab or Microbiology with lab and a Human Growth and Development, Statistics, or Nutrition course.

If this program interests you, you must also submit each of the following: one professional recommendation from a nursing program instructor, academic advisor, or nurse supervisor, an essay that describes how the RN-to-BSN program will influence your nursing practice, a typed resume or curriculum vitae, and all official transcripts from previous college coursework.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Maryland offers students in its RN-to-BSN degree program the opportunity to choose one of two three-course focus areas: Care Coordination with Health IT or Substance Use and Addictions.
• The Care Coordination with Health IT focus area option is the first of its kind in the United States.

2. University of Nebraska Medical Center - Omaha, NE

Program Details:

The University of Nebraska Medical Center is home to one of the best RN-to-BSN programs you can find. The program is offered in an online format and is available to registered nurses with a Diploma in Nursing or an Associate Degree in Nursing who hold an active, unencumbered license. Students may take one to three courses per semester, making it possible to graduate in two to six semesters, depending on the courseload.

Students complete six classes, earning 20 credits. The coursework of the curriculum includes the classes Health Promotion, Evidence-Based Nursing, Leadership in Healthcare Delivery I & II, Nursing Interventions and Healthcare Outcomes, and Population Centered Care. You will be awarded 38 credits for previous nursing education once admitted to the BSN program per the Advanced Placement Policy.

In addition to coursework, you will complete clinical requirements for the program in your local community or one near your home. The University of Nebraska Medical Center has clinical partnerships with more than 100 healthcare institutions, offering a diverse range of clinical experiences.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Nebraska Medical Center School of Nursing offers a simulation lab with advanced simulation suits with virtual and augmented reality.
• Students in the RN-to-BSN program learn from renowned faculty who actively lobby for healthcare change and perform nursing research.

3. Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center - Lubbock, TX

Program Details:

At Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, you have access to one of the best RN-to-BSN programs available. The program offers an online option for busy RNs who wish to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing. This option means you have the flexibility to study when and where you want.

The RN-to-BSN program’s curriculum prepares students to synthesize evidence-based practice in nursing, aimed at improving health outcomes for individuals, families, and populations. Students learn to apply a holistic approach to patient care and how to move from the bedside to the boardroom with upper-level nursing courses devoted to management and leadership in nursing.

The RN-to-BSN program can be completed by earning 30 semester credit hours over the course of two or three semesters. The program does not require traditional clinicals as part of the RN-to-BSN curriculum. However, students will work with mentors of their choosing on projects that offer field experiences. Most of these projects can be completed at your place of employment.

Interesting Highlights

• Texas Tech University Health Science Center has articulation agreements between its School of Nursing and community colleges throughout the state to aid the transition between associate degree programs and the TTUHSC RN-to-BSN program.
• Although Texas Tech University HSC is part of the Texas Tech University System, it is a separate institution from Texas Tech University.

4. The University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa, AL

Program Details:

The University of Alabama is home to another of the best RN-to-BSN programs in the United States. The program offers three start dates in the Spring, Summer, and Fall semesters each year, making it easy to begin your pursuit of a BSN at a time that is most convenient for you.

The program is offered in an online format, making it convenient for working nursing professionals. The program boasts high retention rates for graduates, excellent job placement percentages, and excellent, renowned faculty who are dedicated to student success.

The RN-to-BSN program can be completed in three semesters of full-time study or six semesters of part-time study. Students complete 25 credit hours of coursework. You will receive 40 hours of nursing credit in recognition of your current RN licensure. Licensure must be maintained for the duration of the RN-to-BSN program.

If you are a graduate of a CNEA or ACEN-accredited nursing school with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 on all lower-division nursing coursework and possess an unencumbered license to practice, you are encouraged to apply.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Alabama School of Nursing has an impressive 98-100% placement rate for graduates of the RN-to-BSN bridge program.

5. Virginia Commonwealth University - Richmond, VA

Program Details:

Offering one of the best RN-to-BSN bridge programs nationwide, the Virginia Commonwealth University allows registered nurses with an associate’s degree or diploma in nursing to earn a baccalaureate in nursing in six semesters.

The minimum number of credits required to earn the BSN degree at Virginia Commonwealth University is 122. The total curriculum includes 51 credits of pre-requisite and general education courses, 39 upper-division proficiency credits (credit for nursing experience) and 32 BSN major coursework, which is completed through VCU.

Interesting Highlights

• The RN-to-BSN degree program at Virginia Commonwealth University is ranked in the top 4% of undergraduate nursing programs by U.S. News & World Report.
• Virginia Commonwealth University offers co-enrollment partnerships with John Tyler, Southside Virginia, J. Sargeant Reynolds, and Rappahannock Community Colleges where students can enroll in the VCU RN-to-BSN program during their third semester or summer break of the AAS program at either of these partner schools.

6. George Washington University - Washington, DC

Program Details:

At George Washington University, you can earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing in as few as fifteen months. After completing the program, which is one of the best RN-to-BSN programs nationwide, you will synthesize knowledge from behavioral and natural sciences and humanities as a foundation for professional nursing practice.

The RN-to-BSN program is designed for part-time study. The curriculum involves 36 credits: 21 upper-level nursing credits and 15 credits earned through the Nursing Advancement Professional Portfolio course. Students must complete a minimum of 500 direct-contact patient care clinical hours to meet the clinical requirements established by the Virginia Board of Nursing.

Graduates will have the knowledge and skills to demonstrate ethical, professional, and legal values and standards of nursing practice, identify health needs affecting society and help improve the delivery of quality healthcare, and demonstrate accountability for decisions, interventions, and outcomes related to nursing practice.

Interesting Highlights

• The Office of Clinical Practice and Community Engagement at George Washington University facilitates partnerships with local, regional, and international partners. The Office includes the University’s Center for Aging, Health and Humanities, Center of Health Policy and Medical Engagement, Global Initiatives, and Community Engagement initiatives.
• Applicants who have earned an associate degree in nursing from one of George Washington University’s partner institutions may be eligible for guaranteed admission into the program. Partner institutions include Carroll Community College, Cecil College, Chesapeake Community College, College of Southern Maryland, Harford Community College, Howard Community College, Montgomery College, NOVA-Springfield w/ SMHS, OADN, Prince George’s Community College, Randolph-Macon College, and Virginia Community College System.

7. Ohio University - Athens, OH

Program Details:

Ohio University understands the need for highly qualified nurses and, in response to an increased demand for bachelor’s-prepared nurses, offers an RN-to-BSN bridge program that is one of the best in the nation. If you are a registered nurse seeking to advance your career with a bachelor’s degree in nursing, this could be an excellent option for you.

The curriculum for the RN-to-BSN program builds upon previous nursing education. Therefore, many of the courses you need to earn the Bachelor of Science in nursing were likely completed during your diploma or associate degree in nursing education.

You will complete 31 credits of nursing major coursework online. Each nursing course is offered in five-week sessions. The curriculum includes classes such as the following: Professional Nursing Practice, Community Health Nursing, Evidence-Based Nursing Practice, Leadership in Nursing and Nursing Excellence.

Interesting Highlights

• Ohio University is ranked among the top 25 nursing programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
• Ohio University RN-to-BSN students can take their first course for free! This free first nursing course is applied as a scholarship and is valued at the current cost of course tuition and fees.

8. Pennsylvania State University - University Park, PA

Program Details:

The RN-to-BSN degree program at the Pennsylvania State University offers students the option of fully online or hybrid classes. If you want more flexibility, you can also choose the university’s accelerated RN to BSN format. Both the online and hybrid options for the RN-to-BSN program are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

This accredited RN-to-BSN program requires students to earn a total of 120 credits, inclusive of prerequisites and lower-level nursing courses. The prescribed courses for the RN-to-BSN pathway include a minimum of 42 credits.

Instead of participating in typical clinical hours, students in the RN-to-BSN program complete a course in Integrated Concepts in Nursing Practice. This class is a three-credit-hour course during which students earn 45 clinical hours. Integrated Concepts in Nursing Practice is a health-related activity that requires students to complete a project and/or spend time in a healthcare setting. A few examples of clinical experiences associated with this clinical course include creating a teaching project for vulnerable population, working with a school nurse to develop, implement and review a health education fair for their local school, or working with the administrator of a non-profit or public agency to develop interventions based on what you learn.

Interesting Highlights

• The Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing is approved by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
• Students enrolled in the Pennsylvania State University RN-to-BSN program can enhance their professional credentials by earning specialized certificates in one of three areas: Nursing Forensics, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Management.

9. University of Texas Health Science Center-Houston - Houston, TX

Program Details:

The University of Texas Health Science Center offers an accredited RN-to-BSN bridge program with three start dates each Spring, Summer, and Fall semester. The program is offered 100% online and designed for registered nurses who wish to advance their careers to the baccalaureate level.

The program, which is one of the best RN-to-BSN programs nationwide, can be completed in as few as two semesters or up to five semesters. To confer the BSN degree, the program requires students earn a total of 120 credits for all prerequisite, advanced placement, and upper-level coursework. Prerequisites typically transfer from your associate or diploma nursing degree. You will receive 29 advanced placement hours and must then earn 31 nursing credit hours.

If you are interested in the University of Texas HSC’s RN-to-BSN program, you must reside in the state of Texas before the first day of class, hold an active Texas RN license or have the ability to secure one during the first semester of enrollment. You must also have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the required 60 credit hours of nursing prerequisites and science prerequisites.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Texas Health Science Center’s Alumni Association holds several events each year to support and engage students in the Cizik School of Nursing. The Association holds Career Day which includes an employer fair, alumni panel, and mock interviews with alumni to help students prepare for graduation and transition into professional nursing practice as a BSN-prepared nurse.
• The UTHSC Cizik School of Nursing has its own chapter of the Nursing Student Nurses’ Association. The Association works to promote professional nursing practices by offering leadership opportunities, community service, and exposure to current professional practices.

10. Michigan State University - East Lansing, MI

Program Details:

The RN-to-BSN program at Michigan State University is designed to build on prior nursing education, helping to enhance the leadership skills of registered nurses as they prepare for professional practice as baccalaureate-prepared nurses. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Education and approved by the Michigan Board of Nursing.

The web-based program can be completed in as few as four semesters. The curriculum is designed for students to earn 30 RN-to-BSN program credits. Students must have completed 60 credits of prerequisite courses and receive 30 credits granted for successful completion of the NCLEX following their ADN or diploma nursing program, which means the total program credits are 120.

Students participate in clinical experiences focused on community health and leadership in settings close to their home regions. The clinical assignments are associated with two classes: Community and Population Health (NUR461) AND Leadership Immersion (NUR465) and each requires 45 clock hours of clinical.

Interesting Highlights

• There are three scholarship opportunities established by former Michigan State University nursing students to help students at the university who are pursuing the RN-to-BSN bridge program. The scholarships are the Nancy Ann Mulrenan Agents Nursing Scholarship, Rao and Joyce Kareti Nursing Scholarship, and the Judge Paula Manderfield Endowed Scholarship.
• The MSU College of Nursing offers the Nursing in London study abroad program. This is a five-credit program, comparing nursing practice, education, and healthcare policies in the United States and the United Kingdom.

11. University of New Mexico - Albuquerque, NM

Program Details:

The University of New Mexico offers another of our featured best RN-to-BSN degree programs. The UNM College of Nursing mission statement is “to provide exemplary and innovative education, research, practice, service, and leadership that improves state, national, and global health. In this program, you will learn to apply evidence-based practice in nursing from a leadership perspective, collaborate with interdisciplinary teams, apply critical thinking as you develop, implement, and evaluate standards for professional practice and incorporate technological advances appropriate for high-quality nursing care.

The program is offered 100% online, with students engaged in 8-week courses. The program is formatted for completion in four semesters.

To graduate from the University of New Mexico RN-to-BSN bridge program, you must complete any outstanding general education course requirements and nursing core courses, earning a total of 120 credit hours. The RN-to-BSN curriculum involves completing 30 credit hours, 24 for the RN-to-BSN completion track, and six from upper-level nursing electives.

Interesting Highlights

• The RN-to-BSN program at the University of New Mexico offers highly qualified instructors with multiple Ph.D. and DNP-prepared faculty.

12. University of Cincinnati - Cincinnati, OH

Program Details:

The University of Cincinnati is home to another of our featured accredited RN-to-BSN degree programs. The University is focused on attracting the best candidates for nursing by implementing initiatives to increase recruitment and retention of a diverse, culturally competent student body, providing an environment of inclusiveness, and offering an innovative education by leveraging technology.

The program is offered exclusively online, making it an excellent choice for working nurses. With a flexible, adjustable schedule that offers six start dates, you can begin at a time most convenient for you. You may choose from part-time or full-time enrollment and complete the program in two semesters (9 months), three semesters (12 months), or five semesters (18 months). This schedule is contingent upon already having completed all prerequisite course requirements.

The RN-to-BSN curriculum includes only nine nursing courses totaling 27 credits. There is no face-to-face clinical requirement for the RN-to-BSN program. Most courses last seven weeks, except for the semester-long capstone course, which is completed in the final semester.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Cincinnati is a seven-time recipient of the INSIGHT into Diversity Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award.
• The School of Nursing is designated as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing.

13. Texas Woman's University - Denton, TX

Program Details:

Texas Women’s University offers an RN-to-BSN program designed for registered nurses with a diploma or associate degree in nursing desiring to earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing. The program is exclusively online, which means you can continue to work full-time.

The goal of this is to prepare registered nurses to transition into the role of baccalaureate nursing to function as an integral part of the interdisciplinary team. The program also teaches you to apply ethical principles to promote advocacy and social justice and to identify, apply and evaluate scientific evidence. Additionally, students learn clinical judgment, patient preferences, and interprofessional perspectives to nursing practice.

Students receive 28-semester credits for having an active, unencumbered license to practice as a United States registered nurse. The RN-to-BSN coursework component includes 32-semester credits. All students earn 90 clinical hours, 45 from clinicals, and 45 from a professional project.

Admission to the program is contingent upon holding a current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in the U.S. Prospective students must complete all lower-division prerequisites plus two-semester credits of electives and have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 on lower-division prerequisite courses.

Interesting Highlights

• The 27th Legislature of 1901 Founded the Girls Industrial College as a public institution which later became Texas Women’s University in 1957.
• Texas Women’s University is well-known for its leadership and contributions to nursing education.

14. University of Louisville - Louisville, KY

Program Details:

If you are ready to take the next step in your nursing career and have earned an associate degree in nursing, the RN-to-BSN program at the University of Louisville could be a great option for you. The program offers a convenient online format with 24/7 access to tools and resources to help you succeed.

This RN-to-BSN degree program is designed to equip you with the education necessary to pursue advanced nursing roles and meet employer demand for BSN-prepared nurses. The RN-to-BSN curriculum includes eleven courses, offered one at a time, with 8-week terms. By graduation, all students earn a minimum of 120 credits, which include 59 transfer credits earned during ADN education or general education requirements, 30 Professional Nursing Portfolio credits, and 31 credits of RN-to-BSN core coursework.

Some required coursework includes classes such as Case Management for Individuals and Families, Global Health- Disparities and Social Determinants, Community Health Nursing, and Health Promotion for Individuals, Families, and Communities. In addition to the required coursework, you will complete the Community Leadership Practicum to earn 84 clinical hours. These clinical hours are completed in your local community.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Louisville RN-to-BSN program is ranked one of the Best Online Programs for nursing by U.S. News & World Report.
• Nursing faculty are actively engaged in scholarship, community service and nursing practice, making them excellent choices to teach a quality distance learning program, like the one offered here at the University of Louisville.

15. University of Tennessee- Health Science Center - Memphis, TN

Program Details:

The University of Tennessee Health Science Center offers one of the best RN-to-BSN bridge programs nationwide. The program is approved by the Tennessee Board of Nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Students at the University learn from renowned nurse educators, like Professor Sara Day, PhD, RN, FAAN, who was inducted into the International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame in recognition of the global impact related to her research.

The RN-to-BSN degree program prepares students to use critical thinking and reasoning to make decisions about patient care, advocate for patients, families, communities, and populations, and implement population-focused strategies to promote wellness and prevent disease.

The three-semester, online program includes 30 clinical hours of coursework including Care Coordination and Transition Management, Population Health Nursing Concepts, Nursing Leadership and Management, and Evidence-Based Practice: Concepts of Scientific Inquiry and Evaluation. Students participate in a 14-week nursing internship with a focus on Leadership and Management Practice.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Tennessee Health Science Center received a $3.9 million grant to establish a mobile health unit to help promote community health.
• The UTHSC received a $50,000 grant from Global Blood Therapeutics to help establish and implement a pilot boot camp focused on the care of patients with sickle cell disease.

16. University of Missouri-Columbia - Columbia, MO

Program Details:

If earning a Bachelor of Science in nursing from the comfort of your home sounds interesting, the University of Missouri’s RN-to-BSN, which ranks as one of the best RN-to-BSN programs in the U.S. may be what you’re looking for! With start dates in the spring, summer, and fall, you can pick a time that is most convenient for you and begin working toward earning a BSN.

At the University of Missouri, advisors will work with you to customize an individualized plan of study specific to your needs. All coursework is delivered online, and you can graduate in as few as 14 months. The RN-to-BSN program curriculum includes 26 credit hours of coursework.

You will take classes including Role Transitions, Nursing in Communities, Evidence-Based Nursing Practice, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Leadership & Ethics. The final summer semester consists of a 10-week class, Nursing in Communities, which awards four of the 26 required credits and 45 clinical hours.

If the RN-to-BSN program offered at the University of Missouri interests you, begin by applying to the University, and submit all official transcripts from any college or university ever attended to the Admissions Office. UM requires a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale for all college-level coursework.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Missouri offers scholarship opportunities of 10% off for military veterans and graduates of any public Missouri community college enrolled in its RN-to-BSN bridge program.
• Some students currently enrolled in their associate degree nursing program have the option to dual enroll in some RN-to-BSN classes concurrently.

17. University of North Carolina-Charlotte - Charlotte, NC

Program Details:

The RN-to-BSN program at the University of North Carolina offers associate degree and diploma-prepared registered nurses the opportunity to enhance and advance their professional nursing careers. The distance education option offered allows students to meet the RN-to-BSN requirements completely online.

To earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing through this RN-to-BSN degree program, you will complete a minimum of 120 semester hours including general education, RN-to-BSN prerequisites and major coursework. You must complete the 31 semester hours of nursing coursework at UNC-Charlotte.

Two classes, Community Health Nursing and Design & Coordination of Care for Nurses, include a clinical practice component. If all general education and nurse prerequisites are complete, you can complete the program in one year of study.

As a graduate of the accredited RN-to-BSN program offered at the University of North Carolina, you will be prepared to provide sensitive, compassionate care to patients from diverse backgrounds across all levels of the health and illness spectrum. You will confidently apply a value-based system to incorporate legal and professional standards when communicating with patients, peers, faculty, and colleagues and utilize strategies to promote health, reduce risk and prevent disease across the lifespan.

Interesting Highlights

• Professor Jhordin James C. Montegrico of the University of North Carolina runs an online test prep center for international nurses to help improve the chances of success in nursing school and on the NCLEX-RN.
• UNC’s School of Nursing Director, Dena Evans, is a board member of the North Carolina Future of Nursing Action Coalition.

18. Clemson University - Clemson, SC

Program Details:

Clemson University is home to another of our top-rated RN-to-BSN programs. The program caters to registered nurses pursuing a baccalaureate nursing degree by emphasizing the values of intellectual curiosity, ethical decision-making, interdisciplinary respect, and critical thinking.

The RN-to-BSN degree program curriculum is designed to broaden the registered nurse’s current knowledge base by providing courses such as Professionalism in Nursing, Healthcare Genetics, Community & Family Nursing, Research in Nursing and Leadership & Management in Nursing.

Although all classes are offered in a fully online format, students must attend orientation day on the Clemson University campus in Clemson, South Carolina, prior to beginning classes.

Once you are accepted into the program and after you complete "Issues in Professionalism" with a grade of “B” or higher, you will receive credit for 31 semester hours from your associate degree program. You will complete 32 semester hours of upper-level nursing coursework. The online RN-to-BSN program track can be completed in as few as 12 months of full-time study. Working students may consider the part-time option of study.

After successfully completing the program, you will be capable of employing management and leadership skills with an in-depth knowledge of health policy, demonstrate professional and personal accountability and responsibility in accordance with high standards of professional nursing practice.

Interesting Highlights

• Clemson University RN-to-BSN program graduates score 5% higher on the NCLEX than graduates of any other nursing program in the state.
• The Clemson University School of Nursing offers a Clinical Learning Research Center to provide opportunities for innovative, educational research opportunities to students.

19. Auburn University - Auburn, AL

Program Details:

Auburn University offers an online RN-to-BSN program designed for currently licensed registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma in nursing to earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing degree in as few as 12 months. The university provides a program that prepares students with the critical thinking, evidence-based practice, and leadership skills necessary to positively impact patients, families, and populations.

The RN-to-BSN program offers fall and spring start dates. Students complete 31 credit hours which are earned by taking six upper-level nursing courses. Clinical opportunities for experiential learning in advanced concepts including interprofessional experience, community health, and nursing leadership.

Prospective students interested must apply to Auburn University and the Auburn University School of Nursing Upper Division separately. All applicants must submit verification of volunteer, work, and/or study hours. Additionally, you must complete at least three science prerequisites including Principles of Biology (with Lab), Fundamentals of Chemistry (with Lab), Microbiology (with Lab), and Anatomy & Physiology I & II (both with Lab).

Interesting Highlights

• The Auburn University School of Nursing was established around 40 years back in 1979. The first year the nursing program was offered, a team of five faculty taught and helped 24 students graduate.

20. Drexel University - Philadelphia, PA

Program Details:

The Drexel University RN-to-BSN program, which is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, is an excellent option for associate- or diploma-prepared registered nurses to earn a Bachelor of Science in nursing. The program offers synchronous and asynchronous formats to allow flexibility in student schedules.

The RN-to-BSN program’s curriculum requires students to complete 180 quarter credits. Accepted students may transfer up to 135 of the required credits toward the degree. Students who meet the criteria of the Pennsylvania Articulation Model and are graduates of National League for Nursing accredited associate or diploma nursing programs are awarded 30 semester hours, which are calculated in the 135 transferable credits. Students complete at least 45 quarter credits of tier 3, or upper-level nursing coursework.

The Drexel RN-to-BSN program utilizes problem-based learning, virtual simulated patient experiences, nationwide discussion forums, and a state-of-the-art online Health Science e-library which is available to all students as part of every course. If travel interests you, the university offers an award-winning 10-day study abroad opportunity, which is incorporated into one of the available clinical courses.

Interesting Highlights

• Drexel University encourages life-long learning and career advancement by inviting qualified students to submatriculate into the MSN program while still enrolled in the RN-to-BSN bridge program.
• If you have completed an associate or diploma nursing degree and meet all other admission criteria, you may apply for provisional acceptance pending successful completion of the NCLEX-RN.

21. The University of Alabama in Huntsville - Huntsville, AL

Program Details:

The RN-to-BSN degree program offered at the University of Alabama in Huntsville provides a foundation for developing the tools you need to improve safety and quality in patient care while transitioning to baccalaureate roles in nursing. The program is available in an online format and can be completed in as few as 12 months without disrupting your current personal or work schedule.

The RN-to-BSN completion program will prepare you to practice nursing using scientific, legal, professional and ethical standards, translate research, and utilize evidence-based practice to promote high-quality patient care across vulnerable, diverse cultures and populations. The university encourages students to engage in lifelong learning and to participate in professional activities which enhance the nursing profession.

After completing the course Validation Credit (NUR000), with a grade of “C” or higher, you will be awarded up to 42 credit hours for your current RN licensure. You must maintain an active, unencumbered license to practice for the duration of the program.

The RN-to-BSN curriculum includes 26 credit hours of upper-division nursing courses delivered over seven courses. Students earn the required clinical hours during the Community Health for the Professional Nurse course.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Alabama in Huntsville College of Nursing RN-to-BSN program aligns with professional nursing standards and guidelines as established by the Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice (AACN), THE American Nurses Association Code of Ethics for Nurses (ANA), and Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN).
• The program offers 7-week courses and six start dates each year.

22. San Diego State University - San Diego, CA

Program Details:

If you are looking for an RN-to-BSN program that offers in-person classes and assigned clinical sites, then San Diego State University could have what you need. The SDSU School of Nursing promotes student learning outcomes including the ability to demonstrate professional nursing values by delivering safe, compassionate, and culturally sensitive care, practicing accountability for professional standards & values, and demonstrating leadership within local, national, & worldwide healthcare.

Although the length of the program may vary, most students in the RN-to-BSN program earn the Bachelor of Science in nursing degree within 15 months. As a student in this program, you will take six classes: Nursing Research & Evidence-Based Practice, Nursing Professionalism, Health Assessment & Health Promotion for RN to BS, Community Health, Leadership, Nursing Care of the Complex, High Acuity or Critically Ill Patients OR Transitional Care of Populations.

Admission to the RN-to-BSN bridge program is contingent upon graduating from an associate degree or diploma program that is regionally accredited and holding a current, unencumbered license to practice as a Registered Nurse in California. You must also demonstrate a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 grading scale for all college coursework.

Interesting Highlights

• Although it is not mandatory, RN-to-BSN bridge program students can participate in an international clinical experience. The goal of the international experience is to increase awareness of global health, cross-cultural issues in nursing and healthcare, and the political, cultural, economic, health, and social services challenges experienced by international populations.

23. University of Colorado-Colorado Springs - Colorado Springs, CO

Program Details:

The University of Colorado offers two RN-to-BSN program options, the traditional RN-to-BSN and the Dual Enrollment RN-to-BSN option. The RN-to-BSN option is designed for RNs with a current, unrestricted license to practice, and the Dual Enrollment RN-to-BSN option is designed for students who are currently enrolled in an Associate degree nursing program but wish to get a jump start on their BSN.

To have a BSN conferred through either of the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs RN-to-BSN programs, students must earn a minimum of 126 credits. The credit breakdown includes 55 general education courses and 71 credits from core nursing courses. 38 credits are awarded upon receipt of RN license and credited toward the core nursing course requirement.

Students gain clinical experience in the Public Health Nursing class, which is taken toward the end of the program. You will gain contact hours at an approved community site of your choice.

You can expect to graduate from the RN-to-BSN program in 15 to 30 months, depending on whether you enroll part-time or full-time.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Colorado ranks #2 for best nursing schools in Colorado by U.S. News.
• The University of Colorado is the largest health professions education provider in Colorado, serving more than 4,500 health professions students each year.

24. University of Northern Colorado - Greeley, CO

Program Details:

The University of Northern Colorado is home to another of our featured accredited RN-to-BSN programs. The program is designed to prepare registered nurses for professional practice as baccalaureate-prepared nurses and to provide a foundation for graduate study in nursing.

The University of North Colorado’s boasts of highly skilled faculty with teaching, research, and practice experience. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Students who complete all general education and nursing prerequisites prior to entry may complete the RN-to-BSN program in 20 months.

The RN-to-BSN program offers new cohorts each fall and spring term and is formatted so students may graduate in five semesters. Although coursework is completed online, students must attend a mandatory, one-day orientation at the Loveland campus at the beginning of the program.

To be eligible for graduation, all students must earn at least 120 credits, comprised of general education, nursing prerequisites, and major nursing component courses. The major division nursing classes must be from the University of North Carolina and make up 30 of the required 120 credits.

You will also complete 180 total practicum hours. The final 90 practicum hours are completed in the last semester and require a preceptor at a facility set up by the student and approved by the school.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Colorado is ranked as one of the Best Online Nursing Programs by U.S. News & World Report.
• The University of Colorado offers a Dual Enrollment option where students may take RN-to-BSN courses while concurrently enrolled in an affiliated Colorado Community College. (Articulation is applied when the student completes the AAS degree.)

25. University of Delaware - Newark, DE

Program Details:

The University of Delaware School of Nursing offers a 100% online accredited RN-to-BSN program. The program is formatted for flexibility, making it possible for students to work full-time while earning their degree. It can be completed in five terms or 20 months.

The innovative RN-to-BSN degree program offers an innovative approach to preparing students for professional nursing roles as baccalaureate-prepared RNs. The curriculum is designed to help develop the student’s individual leadership skills, scholarly writing skills, use of evidence-based practice, and research knowledge.

All incoming students must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.5 on all previously earned college credits. The University of Delaware awards a BSN degree after students complete at least 120 credits of prescribed coursework. Students must complete 30 credit hours in the upper division of the nursing component.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Delaware College of Nursing initiated a plan to implement its first RN-to-BSN program in 1968.
• The University of Delaware was ranked by U.S. News as #76 among 694 nursing schools nationwide.

26. University of Maine - Augusta, ME

Program Details:

The foundation of the University of Maine’s School of Nursing is built upon the premise of using holistic nursing to combine a nurturing and healing approach to breakthroughs in medical research. The university offers an RN-to-BSN program that includes full online and blended learning courses. The blended approach includes occasional face-to-face meetings, which can be accessed via synchronous web conferencing.

The holistic approach of the program teaches students ways to practice self-care, which is beneficial in a stressful nursing environment, to create meaningful caring, and healing-focused nursing practices, and promotes knowledge and skills beyond the associate degree foundation to enhance practices.

The online RN-to-BSN program includes a curriculum of coursework totaling 51 credit hours. Upon completion of the program, you will be ready to use the best evidence to provide effective and safe holistic nursing care, use technology to monitor patient outcomes and improve the safety and quality of care, and demonstrate leadership skills necessary to transform and influence healthcare delivery systems.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Maine offers a public tuition rate, which means you pay less than any other RN to BSN program in the state.
• 100% of students from the University of Maine School of Nursing are employed in role-related practice within 3 months of graduation.

27. East Carolina University - Greenville, NC

Program Details:

If you are a registered nurse looking for an online, personalized educational experience where you can earn your BSN, East Carolina is worth taking a second look at. The university offers one of our featured accredited RN-to-BSN programs that is conducted fully online, which means you can keep your job while earning your degree.

This RN-to-BSN program is available to associate degree or diploma registered nurses whose credential was conferred from an accredited school of nursing. Students must reside in North Carolina or an NCSBON-compact state for the duration of the program.

The program’s curriculum is designed to be completed in four semesters or 16 months, including one summer session. Students will complete 33 credit hours of coursework in classes including Nursing Research, Clinical Scholarship, and Evidence-Based Practice, Critical Thinking to Facilitate Role Transition: RN to BSN, Professionalism in Baccalaureate Nursing Practice, and Nursing Leadership & Finance.

Interesting Highlights

• East Carolina University is designated is nationally ranked and designated as a National League for Nursing Center of Excellence.
• The East Carolina University is nationally recognized as a best-value online RN-to-BSN program, which means you can earn a quality education without paying high tuition rates.

28. University of Michigan-Flint - Flint, MI

Program Details:

If you are a registered nurse ready to take your career one step further by earning a Bachelor of Science in nursing, an RN-to-BSN degree program could be a great fit for you. The University of Michigan offers a program focused on improving your knowledge of patient care, leadership, healthcare policy, and evidence-based practice.

The University of Michigan-Flint's online RN-to-BSN program offers registered nurses an accelerated pathway to earn a baccalaureate degree in nursing. The program boasts of renowned faculty and is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
As a student at the University of Michigan-Flint in the RN-to-BSN program, you will experience a curriculum that covers diverse crucial subjects relevant to nursing and healthcare. Students must have a total of 120 credits to earn the BSN degree, which includes general education, nursing prerequisites, electives and nursing core classes.

You will earn 31 credit hours from nursing major coursework. The nursing core courses in the curriculum incorporate 16 hours of community-based volunteer work to meet the experiential learning requirement.

Interesting Highlights

• Students enrolled in the University of Michigan-Flint RN-to-BSN degree program may choose to complete one of two add-on elective courses and earn certification in Case Management or Leadership and Management.

29. Stony Brook University - Stony Brook, NY

Program Details:

Stony Brook University offers one of the best RN-to-BSN bridge programs in the United States. The program promotes the development of leadership skills, socially just healthcare, and evidence-based practice.

The RN-to-BSN degree program is available to registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma in nursing. The program is also open to students currently enrolled in an associate degree or diploma, provided they have their RN license within six months from the program’s start date.

The program requires 60 credits of upper-division coursework. In this program, you will take classes including Statistical Methods, Epidemiology: Population-Based, and Professional & Ethical Communication in the Digital Era. Students meet the clinical requirements for the RN-to-BSN degree program during the clinical nursing classes of Nursing Leadership and Population Health.

Upon completion of this program, you will be able to demonstrate values relevant to the Nursing Code of Ethics, incorporate cultural preferences and values into healthcare delivery, use information management to mitigate errors, make informed decisions, and optimize favorable patient outcomes.

Interesting Highlights

• The online RN-to-BSN program at Stony Brook University is ranked in the top 10 online nursing programs by U.S. News.

30. University at Buffalo-SUNY - Buffalo, NY

Program Details:

The RN-to-BSN degree program at the University of Buffalo at SUNY is designed to build upon the knowledge and experience of registered nurses, preparing them for leadership and advanced quality care. Applicants must possess an associate degree or diploma in nursing conferred by a regionally accredited institution.

This program, which is one of the best accredited RN-to-BSN programs available, offers one- and two-year completion plans so students can choose whether to pursue their BSN part-time or full-time. Practicing nurses find the 100% online curriculum an excellent opportunity to earn a higher degree while maintaining employment. Additionally, the program offers rolling admissions with classes starting in the spring, summer, and fall, allowing you to begin at a time that is most convenient for you.

Students complete a minimum of 120 credit hours to be eligible for graduation. 30 credit hours are earned through the University of Buffalo and include classes such as RN Transition into Practice as BS Prepared Leader/Manager, Informatics & Healthcare Environment, Promoting Quality Health Outcomes & Culture of Safety, and Health Promotion and Epidemiology Methods.

All students in the RN-to-BSN program are required to work at least part-time in a nursing role during the program. Each student designs clinical experiences with oversite from faculty in community-based settings and within their practice settings.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Buffalo RN-to-BSN program is ranked #8 among all online bachelor’s degree programs in the United States by U.S. News & World Report.
• The University of Buffalo School of Nursing offers an annual service-learning abroad trip focused on preparing students to examine factors contributing to health disparities and their impact on global communities and to care for global populations.

31. University of Rhode Island - Kingston, RI

Program Details:

The University of Rhode Island offers an excellent RN-to-BSN degree program presented by top educators and researchers, giving you access to a strong foundation of knowledge to help manage the demands of an ever-changing healthcare environment. The program is designed with accelerated seven-week classes and a fast graduation time.

As a student in the University of Rhode Island RN-to-BSN program, you will achieve research-based and science-focused academic experiences to help build upon your practical nursing knowledge. You will develop and strengthen leadership and management in preparation for the BSN role.

Graduation criteria include earning a total of 120 credit hours, 24 of which are earned at URI. The time to completion varies, depending on the number of transfer credits a student has. However, the average time to complete the program is 12 months.

Interesting Highlights

• The RN-to-BSN program at the University of Rhode Island ranks in the top 11% among these types of programs nationwide, according to the U.S. News.
• Any student in the RN-to-BSN program at the university who is employed by one of the University of Rhode Island’s affiliate partner hospitals will receive a $1,000 scholarship toward their online RN-to-BSN degree.

32. University of Memphis - Memphis, TN

Program Details:

The University of Memphis Loewenberg College of Nursing offers a flexible online via the University of Memphis Global. The program, one of the best RN-to-BSN bridge programs available, is accredited by the Tennessee Board of Nursing, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

If you are interested in the University of Memphis RN-to-BSN degree option, you must have an active, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse or be eligible for licensure. After earning an associate degree in nursing or a nursing diploma from an institution accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, you may apply for admission to the University of Memphis as a degree-seeking undergraduate student. Your transcript should reflect a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.

The program is offered exclusively online. Students earn 31 credit hours in classes offered over the course of seven weeks each. Students who pass all scheduled courses can graduate in as few as 12 months. For your prior learning in nursing, you may apply for up to four credits towards the Transitions to Professional Nursing Practice Practicum.

Interesting Highlights

• The University of Memphis RN-to-BSN degree program has a 94% retention rate.

33. Minnesota State University Mankato - Mankato, MN

Program Details:

If you are a registered nurse, desiring to gain experience in leadership and nursing management to promote a new set of career opportunities, the RN-to-BSN degree program at Minnesota State University Mankato could help you get there.

This program, which is one of the nation’s top accredited RN-to-BSN programs is designed for licensed registered nurses with an associate degree in nursing. In this program, students learn to synthesize knowledge necessary to provide competent, safe, evidence-based care and promote the health of individuals, families, and populations.

The program is formatted for online delivery and includes 30 credits of nursing major coursework. All students must earn a minimum of 120 credit hours, which includes general education, nursing prerequisites, electives, and nursing major classes. You will learn to utilize complex systems to create a culture of safety and promote initiatives based on interprofessional care, integrate clinical reasoning, evidence, patient preferences, and interprofessional perspectives to plan, implement, and evaluate patient outcomes.

Interesting Highlights

• Minnesota State University Mankato offers the Maverick Family Nursing Simulation Center, a state-of-the-art facility that utilizes technology to combine classroom learning and real-word clinical settings. The center is the only one of its kind in Minnesota.

34. San Jose State University - San Jose, CA

Program Details:

At San Jose State University, you will find another of the best RN-to-BSN bridge programs.

The program is designed for registered nurses who hold an associate degree in nursing. Eligible applicants are current California registered nurses or students who will earn a California RN license by the end of the RN-to-BSN program’s first semester.

This excellent RN-to-BSN program, which can be completed in 15 months or three semesters, includes some in-person and off-campus community experiences and online delivery of theory courses. The curriculum incorporates leadership, research, and critical thinking.

Students in the program must earn a total of 120 credits to complete the program. These credits include pre-nursing and general education prerequisites and 30 credits of upper-level nursing classes. Clinical requirements are met through a Community Health practicum.

Interesting Highlights

• After completing the Community Health course and earning a Bachelor of Science in nursing, students may apply for a California Health Nursing Certificate.

35. University of North Dakota - Grand Forks, ND

Program Details:

The University of North Dakota offers a 30-credit, online RN-to-BSN program. The program can be completed in one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study.

Eligible applicants will have an associate degree in nursing from a regionally accredited institution, an unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse and a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher on all previous academic coursework.

The program’s curriculum requires students to complete 36 upper division course credits and have a total of 120 credit hours to be eligible for graduation.

Graduates of this program will be prepared to assume roles in leadership and management within healthcare delivery systems, influence healthcare policy, regulatory environments, and economics, and demonstrate competency in integrating innovative patient-centered patient care technology.

Interesting Highlights

• Students who live near the university are welcome to take advantage of the Clinical Resource and Simulation Center to help improve their skills, although on-campus attendance is not mandatory.



One of the biggest drawbacks for students considering going back to school, like those interested in RN-to-BSN programs, is the cost. Fortunately, there are several scholarship and grant opportunities available if you know where to look. Here are a few examples of common scholarships that may interest you.

• The Judge Paule Manderfield Endowed Scholarship (Up to $2,500):

This scholarship was established by David Gilstrap and his wife, Judge Paula Manderfield. Judge Manderfield attended Michigan State University where she completed an RN-to-BSN program before entering law school. The scholarship was established with the preference that it provides assistance to students in the university’s RN-to-BSN program.

The Barbara Rhomberg Excellence in Nursing Scholarship ($1,000):

is open for applications to individuals who are enrolled full-time in an undergraduate nursing program, such as the featured RN-to-BSN programs. One of the key criteria for applicants is to be a non-traditional student, meaning there was at least a 3-year gap between high school graduation and enrollment in a college or university.

• The Dr. Lauranne Sams Scholarship ($5,000):

is one of several scholarships offered by the National Black Nurses Association. Applicants must be members of the Association in good standing and enrolled in an accredited nursing program, such as RN-to-BSN programs.

• Great 100 Nursing Scholarship ($500):

Open to all active RNs in Northeast Floriday enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate nursing program, including RN-to-BSN programs.

• The Paulina L. Sorg Scholarship

is open to college juniors, seniors, and graduate students pursuing degrees in physical therapy or nursing, such as those enrolled in accredited RN-to-BSN degree programs.

• The United Daughters of the Confederacy ($1,000-$1,500):

offers scholarship opportunities to direct descendants of eligible Confederate soldiers. Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. The award amount varies.

• The Margaret Jones Memorial Nursing Fund (up to $,5000):

is open to BS nursing students in select areas of Hawaii with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Preference is given to members of the Hawaii Nurses Association.

• The Palmetto Gold Undergraduate Scholarship (1,000):

is available to any nursing student enrolled in an undergraduate program, like the RN-to-BSN programs featured in this article. The award amount varies.


Choosing the right RN-to-BSN program can feel a little frustrating, at times, especially if you are unsure what to look for. The following are five of the most important factors to consider when choosing the program that is right for you.

1. Is the program accredited?

Accreditation ensures that RN-to-BSN programs across the nation hold to common quality standards, which promotes the future of the profession and enhances the quality of care delivered by nurses. Graduates of RN-to-BSN schools do not have to retake the NCLEX exam. However, it is still important to attend an accredited nursing program, as employers consider accreditation an important factor when choosing nurses, especially those desiring leadership positions.

2. How is the program formatted?

(Online, on-campus, or hybrid) Some students learn better with independent study, while others prefer the benefits of classroom learning. RN-to-BSN programs are offered in different formats. So, knowing how you learn best will help you choose the one that is right for you.

3. Does the curriculum include clinicals?

Some RN-to-BSN programs require face-to-face clinical experiences while others incorporate a clinical component into some of their courses. You need to know what your preferred school’s policy is on clinicals so you know what to expect and meet the clinical requirement for graduation.

4. How long is the program?

Most accredited RN-to-BSN programs can be completed in 12 to 24 months. It is important to decide how much time you can dedicate to your studies and pick a program that is within those time constraints.

5. Are faculty easily accessible?

Many RN-to-BSN programs are offered in an online format, which means you have little face-to-face interaction with instructors. Be sure to verify how faculty for your chosen program can be contacted and how easy it is to reach them.


Anytime you decide to pursue a higher education degree, you can expect challenges. The following are examples of the three most common challenges associated with RN-to-BSN degree programs and tips on how to overcome them.

Challenge #1: Juggling school and work simultaneously can be stressful.

About the Challenge:

Most students who enroll in RN-to-BSN programs continue to work while enrolled. It may take some time to figure out how to balance the roles of a working nurse and student.

How to Overcome it:

One of the best ways to overcome the struggle that comes with combining work and school is to plan ahead. Talk to your employer/supervisor and discuss the fact that you are returning to school. Discuss options for your work schedule that will allow you to continue working but also provide time for study. This is also a good time to talk with your spouse or loved ones and divvy up the household chores and family responsibilities, which could take some stress off you as you learn and work.

Challenge #2: Developing an Evidence-Based Practice Mindset

About the Challenge:

While all nurses are taught the basics of why evidence-based practice is important, it becomes more of a “way of nursing” as you step into baccalaureate level nursing.

How to Overcome it:

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. In fact, the first step in evidence-based practice is to ask a question. Even if you enroll in an online RN-to-BSN program, there may be times when the class meets virtually. Make the most of the opportunities to participate in those sessions. Keep an open line of communication with your instructor... After all, that’s what we are here for!

Challenge #3: Taking Care of Yourself

About the Challenge:

It is normal (and understandable) for RN-to-BSN students working and going to school to feel as if there is little time for anything else. Unfortunately, one of the first things that is overlooked is self-care, and this could make things worse instead of better.

How to Overcome it:

If you want to succeed in anything, you must learn to practice self-care. Make it a part of your daily routine. Self-care does not have to be complicated. Take some time to unplug from social media and go for a walk instead. You may just need a lazy afternoon watching a movie or going to the park. Light some candles and soak in a hot bath. Anything that can help you relax and unwind is a form of self-care. Also, don’t skip meals! Eating a healthy diet, getting some exercise, and getting adequate sleep are essential if you want to succeed.


Whether you like to read, listen to podcasts, or watch videos, there are lots of resources where you can find information about any subject that interests you. The internet and social media platforms make it especially easy to find information at our fingertips, if we know where to look. The following are a few examples of resources about RN-to-BSN degree programs you may find helpful.

YouTube Videos

RN-to-BSN Programs- What You Need to Know:

In this five-minute YouTube video, you will find key highlights about things to consider when choosing from different RN-to-BSN programs.

Advice from a Nursing (RN-to-BSN) Student:

In this video, you’ll get inside from a real RN-to-BSN student about the programs and advice on how to succeed.

ADN vs BSN- Which Degree is Right for You?:

In this video, host Nurse Liz discusses pros and cons of ADN and BSN nursing degrees. This video could be helpful if you are on the fence trying to decide about if an RN-to-BSN program is the right choice.


Empowered Nurse Podcast:

Host, Lacey Magen, offers advice to listeners on various topics, including how to handle the transition from RN-to-BSN nursing.

My Nursing Mastery:

This podcast focuses on specific aspects related to nursing. It is part of Higher Learning Technologies, which helps transform nursing education, including focusing on RN-to-BSN education and role transition.

Nurse Becoming:

This popular podcast offers resources to help new nurses and those shifting their careers, such as nurses in RN-to-BSN programs.


How to Succeed in Nursing School:

This book offers practical advice for getting into, enjoying, and succeeding in nursing school. Some interesting highlights that will benefit RN-to-BSN program students are the tips for how to transition to upper-level nursing coursework seamlessly.

Nursing Beyond the Bedside:

As you transition from an RN to baccalaureate-prepared nurse, you will find there are several opportunities to advance your career. In this book, author Susan E. Lowey, offers insight into nursing careers beyond the bedside that could interest you.

Take Charge of Your Nursing Career:

Author, Lois Sarah Marshall, offers readers insight and advice on topics such as continuing education by pursuing higher nursing degrees, work-life balance, and ways to market yourself.


The ultimate goal of RN-To-BSN program graduates is to get a degree and become a licensed registered nurse. The following are a few questions related to licensure for RN-To-BSN graduates.

What License Do You Need To Get After Completing Your RN-To-BSN Degree?

One of the great things about graduating from RN-to-BSN degree programs is that you do not have to retake the nurse licensure exam for registered nurses (NCLEX-RN). As long as you keep your license active during the program, which is a typical requirement to remain in the program, you should be good to go as far as working after graduation.

What Is The Step-By-Step Process To Get Your RN License After Completing Your RN-To-BSN Degree?

After graduating from RN-to-BSN degree programs, it is not necessary to apply for a new nursing license to practice as a registered nurse. You may wish to notify your employer of your new credentials and update your resume, but a new license is not required.


Graduates of RN-to-BSN degree programs work in various settings, with the most common places being general medical and surgical hospitals, physicians’ offices, home health care services, outpatient care centers, and nursing care facilities.

1. General Medical and Surgical Hospitals:

RN-to-BSN graduates who work in general medical and surgical hospitals specialize in the care of patients with non-surgical and surgical conditions. They promote health, disease prevention, and educate patients and their loved ones about their conditions.

The schedule of RN-to-BSN nurses who work in this setting varies. Many nurses work shift work or rotate between night and day. Those who work in management may have a more set schedule or work typical office hours.

2. Offices of Physicians:

In physicians’ offices, graduates of RN-to-BSN programs may supervise other nurses and ensure staffing is sufficient to meet patient needs. They may have a more clinical role, assisting physicians with in-office procedures, preparing patients for examinations, administering medications, or monitoring patients.

One of the things that attracts nurses, including RN-to-BSN graduates to jobs in physicians’ offices is the great schedule. Most physicians’ offices are open Monday through Friday with an occasional half day on Saturday, which makes this job an excellent choice for nurses with children, families, or other responsibilities.

3. Home Health Care Services:

Home health care services is another popular job among nurses who graduate from RN-to-BSN degree programs. Nurses who work for home health care services provide one-on-one care for patients who are homebound. In home health settings, RN-to-BSN graduates perform assessments of clients, create and implement nursing care plans, perform venipunctures for routine laboratory tests, and educate clients and their caregivers about their illness, disease, or disability.

Most home health visits are performed during the week, which makes the typical schedule for home health care nurses Monday through Friday. However, there may be times when nurses must work a weekend or be on-call for PRN visits or scheduled visits, such as for patients who need daily wound care or IV therapy.

4. Outpatient Care Centers:

RN-to-BSN graduates working in outpatient care centers implement nursing care plans and physicians' orders, assess patient vital signs, perform routine diagnostic tests such as EKGs and venipunctures for lab work, and assist physicians with patient care. They may work in administrative positions as the nursing director or charge nurse.

Many outpatient care centers operate during typical office hours (Monday through Friday). However, there are some outpatient centers that fall into the category of urgent care or after-hours clinics, which may operate on nights and weekends. RN-to-BSN nurses who work in those settings may rotate nights and weekends with others, while others may choose to work only nights and weekends. Outpatient care centers are usually closed on all major holidays.

5. Nursing Care Facilities:

RN-to-BSN program graduates often work in nursing care facilities, healthcare facilities that offer in-patient, sometimes long-term care for patients unable to live alone with no family or those requiring in-patient rehabilitative services. Nursing roles in these settings vary, depending on the nurse’s title. For example, a Director of Nursing oversees all the nursing staff in the facility. Charge nurses are responsible for the staff in a particular unit or hall. Others are considered “floor” nurses and are responsible for daily patient care.

The work schedule of RN-to-BSN nurses in nursing care facilities depends on their role. Administrative nurses may work during the week and have weekends, nights, or holidays off. Floor nurses often work a specific shift: day, evening, or night. Floor nurses often have rotating schedules which requires them to work a certain number of days and be off a few days. For example, they may work 7 on and 7 off or 4 on and 3 off.


Work schedules and work hours for RN-to-BSN graduates vary. Some may choose to work part-time hours, while others work full-time. Additionally, the setting and job title of RN-to-BSN nurses usually determines whether the work schedule is a typically Monday-through-Friday office schedule or if the nurse works shift work.


So, now that you’ve decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in nursing through an RN-to-BSN program, you may be wondering what you’ll do after graduation. Don’t worry... There are tons of opportunities! Here are some examples of some of the best jobs for new RN-to-BSN graduates.

1. Case Manager:

In this role, you will be responsible for coordinating all aspects of patient care, including coordinating services for patients after hospital discharge, ordering supplies for patients, providing discharge instructions, and scheduling follow-up appointments.

2. Nursing Administrator:

As a nurse administrator you will supervise and oversee specific areas of patient care including hiring new employees, scheduling nursing staff, and promoting continuing education among staff.

3. Pharmaceutical Nurse:

Pharmaceutical nurses may work in positions such as consultants and pharmaceutical representatives to help develop and promote new medications.

4. Travel Nurse:

As a travel nurse you can usually choose the location and specialty where you’d like to work your assignment. This option is especially appealing for nurses who want to travel but still need to work.

5. Emergency Room Nurse:

If you want to get lots of experience working with a diversity of patient populations experiencing different health-related issues, there is no better place than the emergency room! Here you will triage patients and assess who needs immediate care, assist physicians with patient care, provide wound care, administer medications, and educate patients and families.


What Is The Starting Salary For New RN-To-BSN Graduates?

Graduates of RN-to-BSN degree programs start their careers with an average entry-level salary of $28.58 per hour, equal to $1,143 weekly, $4,950 monthly, or $59,450 annually.

Starting RN-to-BSN Salary
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Is The Average Salary For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The average annual salary for RN-to-BSN degree holders is $82,750 per year, which equals $39.78 hourly, $1,591 weekly, or $6,900 monthly.

Average RN-to-BSN Salary
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

How Much Does The Salary Of RN-To-BSN Degree Holders Grow With Experience?

After graduating from any of the accredited RN-to-BSN programs, you will find the more experience you gain, the higher your earning potential. For example, with as little as 1-4 years of experience, your income can increase by a few thousand dollars annually. With 5-9 years, your salary could jump from the entry-level pay of $59,450 to $77,600!

When you keep working as a BSN nurse, your income could increase as much as $20,000 or more within ten years. By the time you work 20 years or longer, your income could equal $57.81 hourly, equivalent to $2,313 weekly, $10,020 monthly, or $120,250 annually.

Level of Experience Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
Entry-Level $28.58 $1,143 $4,950 $59,450
1-4 Years of Experience $29.71 $1,188 $5,150 $61,790
5-9 Years of Experience $37.31 $1,492 $6,470 $77,600
10-19 Years of Experience $46.91 $1,877 $8,130 $97,580
20 Years or More Experience $57.81 $2,313 $10,020 $120,250
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Is The Total Average Annual Compensation (Salary + Benefits) For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

One factor that is important to consider when you graduate from college and begin searching for a job is what benefits, if any, a prospective employer offers. In many cases, such as with graduates of RN-to-BSN degree programs, benefits packages can equal tens of thousands of dollars.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, RN-to-BSN graduates who work in private industry jobs may receive benefits packages worth nearly $35,000. Added to their average annual salary, that comes to a total compensation of $117,340. In state and local governments, benefits packages are worth even more, at approximately $51,715. Therefore, RN-to-BSN program graduates in state and local governments could see an average total compensation of $125,735.

Component Private
State and Local
Paid Leave $8,683 $10,316
Supplemental Pay $4,107 $1,357
Insurance $9,153 $15,881
Retirement and Savings $3,990 $16,831
Legally Required $8,918 $7,465
Total Benefits $34,850 $51,715
Average Annual Salary $82,490 $84,020
Total Compensation $117,340 $135,735
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


The average salary for RN-to-BSN graduates varies from one setting to another. For example, graduates who work in nursing care facilities, offices of physicians, and home health care services earn between $72,260 and $73,860 annually. Graduates of RN-to-BSN programs who work in general medical and surgical hospitals and outpatient care centers earn $$85,020 and $93,070, respectively.

Work Setting Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $40.88 $1,635 $7,090 $85,020
Offices of Physicians $35.51 $1,420 $6,160 $73,860
Home Health Care Services $37.59 $1,504 $6,520 $78,190
Outpatient Care Centers $44.75 $1,790 $7,760 $93,070
Nursing Care Facilities $34.74 $1,390 $6,020 $72,260
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


RN-to-BSN graduates earn different amounts, depending on location. The cost of living in an area and the need for nurses are a few factors that impact earning potential. For instance, graduates of RN-to-BSN programs in California earn the highest wages, approximately $124,000 yearly, while nurses with the same degree working in South Dakota earn $60,540.

State Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
Alabama $29.77 1,191 $5,160 $61,920
Alaska $46.75 1,870 $8,100 $97,230
Arizona $39.23 1,569 $6,800 $81,600
Arkansas $31.64 1,266 $5,480 $65,810
California $59.62 2,385 $10,330 $124,000
Colorado $38.78 1,551 $6,720 $80,670
Connecticut $42.56 1,703 $7,380 $88,530
Delaware $37.38 1,495 $6,480 $77,760
District of Columbia $47.38 1,895 $8,210 $98,540
Florida $34.62 1,385 $6,000 $72,000
Georgia $36.24 1,450 $6,280 $75,380
Hawaii $51.22 2,049 $8,880 $106,530
Idaho $35.40 1,416 $6,140 $73,640
Illinois $37.63 1,505 $6,520 $78,260
Indiana $33.12 1,325 $5,740 $68,890
Iowa $31.25 1,250 $5,420 $64,990
Kansas $32.00 1,280 $5,550 $66,560
Kentucky $32.34 1,293 $5,610 $67,260
Louisiana $33.84 1,353 $5,870 $70,380
Maine $35.40 1,416 $6,140 $73,630
Maryland $39.74 1,590 $6,890 $82,660
Massachusetts $46.46 1,858 $8,050 $96,630
Michigan $36.50 1,460 $6,330 $75,930
Minnesota $40.40 1,616 $7,000 $84,030
Mississippi $30.35 1,214 $5,260 $63,130
Missouri $32.59 1,304 $5,650 $67,790
Montana $35.39 1,416 $6,130 $73,610
Nebraska $33.58 1,343 $5,820 $69,850
Nevada $42.69 1,708 $7,400 $88,800
New Hampshire $37.63 1,505 $6,520 $78,270
New Jersey $43.12 1,725 $7,470 $89,690
New Mexico $37.30 1,492 $6,470 $77,590
New York $44.87 1,795 $7,780 $93,320
North Carolina $34.23 1,369 $5,930 $71,200
North Dakota $34.23 1,369 $5,930 $71,200
Ohio $34.44 1,378 $5,970 $71,640
Oklahoma $32.78 1,311 $5,680 $68,180
Oregon $47.42 1,897 $8,220 $98,630
Pennsylvania $36.54 1,462 $6,330 $76,000
Rhode Island $41.00 1,640 $7,110 $85,270
South Carolina $33.45 1,338 $5,800 $69,580
South Dakota $29.11 1,164 $5,050 $60,540
Tennessee $32.06 1,282 $5,560 $66,680
Texas $38.04 1,522 $6,590 $79,120
Utah $35.00 1,400 $6,070 $72,790
Vermont $36.13 1,445 $6,260 $75,160
Virginia $36.87 1,475 $6,390 $76,680
Washington $45.84 1,834 $7,950 $95,350
West Virginia $32.52 1,301 $5,640 $67,640
Wisconsin $36.95 1,478 $6,400 $76,850
Wyoming $35.16 1,406 $6,090 $73,130
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Densely populated areas have an increased need for healthcare providers to accommodate nursing and healthcare services. Because of this need, RN-to-BSN graduates in metropolitan areas typically earn higher incomes.

Some of the metro areas that pay the highest annual salaries for RN-to-BSN nurses include San Juan-Carolina-Caguas Puerto Rico ($36,910), Memphis, TN-MS-AR ($68,510), Sacramento-Roseville-Arden-Arcadia, CA ($135,490) and San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($151,640). RN-to-BSN graduates in the highest paying metros earn between $17.75 hourly or $3,080 monthly and $72.90 hourly or $12,640 monthly.

Metro Hourly Weekly Monthly Annual
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA $47.34 1,893 $8,210 $98,460
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA $55.82 2,233 $9,680 $116,110
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI $39.09 1,563 $6,780 $81,300
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD $39.35 1,574 $6,820 $81,860
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH $48.05 1,922 $8,330 $99,950
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX $39.55 1,582 $6,860 $82,260
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX $40.33 1,613 $6,990 $83,890
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL $35.69 1,427 $6,190 $74,220
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI $37.11 1,484 $6,430 $77,180
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV $42.82 1,713 $7,420 $89,060
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA $38.83 1,553 $6,730 $80,760
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $41.68 1,667 $7,220 $86,690
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $72.90 2,916 $12,640 $151,640
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ $39.72 1,589 $6,890 $82,630
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA $47.74 1,910 $8,280 $99,310
St. Louis, MO-IL $33.96 1,358 $5,890 $70,640
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD $39.94 1,598 $6,920 $83,080
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL $35.28 1,411 $6,120 $73,380
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA $53.70 2,148 $9,310 $111,700
Pittsburgh, PA $35.18 1,407 $6,100 $73,170
Cleveland-Elyria, OH $36.01 1,440 $6,240 $74,900
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO $39.84 1,593 $6,910 $82,860
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA $54.40 2,176 $9,430 $113,150
Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN $34.13 1,365 $5,920 $70,980
Kansas City, MO-KS $34.52 1,381 $5,980 $71,800
Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, NC-SC $35.22 1,409 $6,110 $73,260
Columbus, OH $35.23 1,409 $6,110 $73,270
Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN $34.81 1,392 $6,030 $72,400
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA $48.90 1,956 $8,480 $101,710
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $65.14 2,606 $11,290 $135,490
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, WI $37.59 1,503 $6,520 $78,180
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL $34.99 1,399 $6,060 $72,770
Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin, TN $34.09 1,363 $5,910 $70,900
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $74.63 2,985 $12,940 $155,230
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX $37.92 1,517 $6,570 $78,870
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV $43.38 1,735 $7,520 $90,230
Birmingham-Hoover, AL $30.58 1,223 $5,300 $63,610
Jacksonville, FL $33.87 1,355 $5,870 $70,450
San Juan-Carolina-Caguas, PR $17.75 710 $3,080 $36,910
Durham-Chapel Hill, NC $35.10 1,404 $6,080 $73,000
Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN $33.66 1,346 $5,830 $70,010
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC $36.23 1,449 $6,280 $75,370
Grand Rapids-Wyoming, MI $34.60 1,384 $6,000 $71,970
New Orleans-Metairie, LA $35.47 1,419 $6,150 $73,770
Memphis, TN-MS-AR $32.94 1,318 $5,710 $68,510
Oklahoma City, OK $33.62 1,345 $5,830 $69,930
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY $38.82 1,553 $6,730 $80,740
Providence-Warwick, RI-MA $40.96 1,638 $7,100 $85,200
Richmond, VA $36.99 1,480 $6,410 $76,940
Salt Lake City, UT $36.33 1,453 $6,300 $75,570
Austin-Round Rock, TX $39.15 1,566 $6,790 $81,430
Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT $41.79 1,672 $7,240 $86,920
Raleigh, NC $34.75 1,390 $6,020 $72,280
Charleston-North Charleston, SC $34.94 1,398 $6,060 $72,670
Rochester, NY $36.57 1,463 $6,340 $76,070
Dayton, OH $34.69 1,388 $6,010 $72,150
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR $33.49 1,340 $5,810 $69,660
Omaha-Council Bluffs, NE-IA $34.41 1,377 $5,970 $71,580
Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY $37.36 1,494 $6,480 $77,710
Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, PA-NJ $36.64 1,466 $6,350 $76,210
Albuquerque, NM $38.25 1,530 $6,630 $79,570
Ann Arbor, MI $40.79 1,631 $7,070 $84,830
Madison, WI $40.09 1,604 $6,950 $83,390
Tucson, AZ $37.89 1,516 $6,570 $78,820
Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA $36.11 1,444 $6,260 $75,110
Rochester, MN $41.57 1,663 $7,210 $86,470
Winston-Salem, NC $35.11 1,404 $6,090 $73,030
Tulsa, OK $32.75 1,310 $5,680 $68,130
Jackson, MS $31.76 1,270 $5,510 $66,060
Columbia, SC $33.34 1,334 $5,780 $69,350
Akron, OH $34.30 1,372 $5,950 $71,340
Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, SC $33.31 1,332 $5,770 $69,280
Urban Honolulu, HI $51.77 2,071 $8,970 $107,680
Fresno, CA $57.61 2,304 $9,990 $119,830
New Haven, CT $43.05 1,722 $7,460 $89,530
Knoxville, TN $29.26 1,170 $5,070 $60,850
Syracuse, NY $36.27 1,451 $6,290 $75,440
Lexington-Fayette, KY $32.19 1,288 $5,580 $66,950
Toledo, OH $33.64 1,346 $5,830 $69,980
Springfield, MA-CT $39.01 1,560 $6,760 $81,130
Sioux Falls, SD $28.35 1,134 $4,910 $58,970
Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT $43.72 1,749 $7,580 $90,950
Worcester, MA-CT $42.49 1,699 $7,360 $88,370
Baton Rouge, LA $33.80 1,352 $5,860 $70,300
Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA $32.19 1,288 $5,580 $66,950
North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton, FL $34.81 1,392 $6,030 $72,400
Boise City, ID $36.30 1,452 $6,290 $75,510
Augusta-Richmond County, GA-SC $34.82 1,393 $6,040 $72,420
Spokane-Spokane Valley, WA $44.53 1,781 $7,720 $92,620
Colorado Springs, CO $37.75 1,510 $6,540 $78,520
El Paso, TX $33.29 1,332 $5,770 $69,240
Wichita, KS $30.41 1,217 $5,270 $63,260
Gainesville, FL $35.57 1,423 $6,170 $73,980
Springfield, MO $29.59 1,184 $5,130 $61,550
Shreveport-Bossier City, LA $33.96 1,358 $5,890 $70,630
Cape Coral-Fort Myers, FL $35.30 1,412 $6,120 $73,420
Fort Wayne, IN $33.06 1,323 $5,730 $68,770
Greensboro-High Point, NC $34.79 1,392 $6,030 $72,370
Scranton--Wilkes-Barre--Hazleton, PA $33.89 1,356 $5,880 $70,500
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA $55.06 2,203 $9,540 $114,530
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


RN-To-BSN Salary VS. All Other Occupations Salary

In a nationwide comparison, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the average annual RN-to-BSN salary is approximately $24,490 more than other occupations. The Bureau indicates RN-to-BSN graduates earn an average of $82,750 and other occupations pay $58,260, a difference of 42.04%.

Average Annual Salary
All Occupations
Average Annual Salary
Number %
$82,750$58,260 +$24,490 +42.04%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

RN-To-BSN Salary VS. Other Nursing Salaries

The salary for graduates of RN-to-BSN programs ranks in the middle compared to other nursing salaries. Graduates of these programs earn 27.55% to 59.13% less than Nurse Midwives, Nurse Practitioners, and Nurse Anesthetists. Conversely, they earn between $710 and $49,500 more than Nursing Instructors and Teachers, Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurses, and Nursing Assistants.

Occupation Average
Annual Salary
Number %
Nurse Anesthetist $202,470 -$119,720 -59.13%
Nurse Practitioner $118,040 -$35,290 -29.90%
Nurse Midwife $114,210 -$31,460 -27.55%
Registered Nurse with RN-to-BSN Degree $82,750 $0 0.00%
Nursing Instructor and Teacher, Postsecondary $82,040 +$710 +0.87%
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurse $51,850 +$30,900 +59.59%
Nursing Assistant $33,250 +$49,500 +148.87%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

RN-To-BSN Salary VS. Other Healthcare Salaries

Compared to other healthcare salaries, graduates of RN-to-BSN programs are among the top 10 money earners. Pharmacists, physician assistants, and radiation, physical, and occupational therapists are among the healthcare professionals who earn higher wages, with incomes ranging from $89,470 to $125,690. RN-to-BSN degree holders earn $1,390 to $44,560 more than dental hygienists, diagnostic medical sonographers, physical therapy assistants, emergency medical technicians, and paramedics.

Occupation Average
Annual Salary
Number %
Pharmacist $125,690 -$42,940 -34.16%
Physician Assistant $119,460 -$36,710 -30.73%
Radiation Therapist $94,000 -$11,250 -11.97%
Physical Therapist $92,920 -$10,170 -10.94%
Occupational Therapist $89,470 -$6,720 -7.51%
Registered Nurse with RN-to-BSN Degree $82,750 $0 0.00%
Dental Hygienist $81,360 +$1,390 +1.71%
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer $80,680 +$2,070 +2.57%
Respiratory Therapist $68,190 +$14,560 +21.35%
Radiologic Technologist and Technician $66,490 +$16,260 +24.45%
Dietitian and Nutritionist $65,620 +$17,130 +26.10%
Cardiovascular Technologist and Technician $62,020 +$20,730 +33.42%
Physical Therapist Assistant $60,740 +$22,010 +36.24%
Social Worker $57,880 +$24,870 +42.97%
Surgical Technologist $53,590 +$29,160 +54.41%
Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedic $41,480 +$41,270 +99.49%
Medical Assistant $38,190 +$44,560 +116.68%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Are The Highest Paying Work Settings For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

Graduates of RN-to-BSN programs who hold RN licenses make the most money in nonscheduled air transportation, pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing, merchant wholesalers/nondurable goods, federal executive branches, and office administrative services.

Rank Work Setting Average Annual
1 Nonscheduled Air Transportation $112,630
2 Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing $105,270
3 Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods $101,240
4 Federal Executive Branch $97,600
5 Office Administrative Services $96,630
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Are The Highest Paying States For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

RN-to-BSN degree holders earn the highest wages in California, Hawaii, Oregon, Alaska, Massachusetts, Washington, New York, New Jersey, Nevada, and Connecticut. These ten highest paying states for RN-to-BSN degree holders pay salaries between $88,530 and $124,000 annually.

Rank State Average Annual
1 California $124,000
2 Hawaii $106,530
3 Oregon $98,630
4 Alaska $97,230
5 Massachusetts $96,630
6 Washington $95,350
7 New York $93,320
8 New Jersey $89,690
9 Nevada $88,800
10 Connecticut $88,530
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Are The Highest Paying Metros For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The metros offering the highest pay in the nation for graduates of RN-to-BSN programs are in California and Hawaii. Two metros in Hawaii pay an average of $107,640 per year, while the high-paying California metros pay between $102,330 and $155,230.

Rank Metro Average
Annual Salary
1 San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $155,230
2 San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $151,640
3 Vallejo-Fairfield, CA $146,360
4 Santa Rosa, CA $141,440
5 Napa, CA $139,680
6 Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA $139,590
7 Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $135,490
8 Salinas, CA $130,520
9 Modesto, CA $127,730
10 Hanford-Corcoran, CA $124,790
11 San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA $122,730
12 Fresno, CA $119,830
13 Stockton-Lodi, CA $119,600
14 Yuba City, CA $117,190
15 Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA $116,110
16 Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA $114,530
17 San Diego-Carlsbad, CA $113,150
18 Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA $111,700
19 Redding, CA $110,760
20 Merced, CA $107,760
21 Urban Honolulu, HI $107,680
22 Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI $107,600
23 Chico, CA $107,290
24 Bakersfield, CA $107,090
25 Visalia-Porterville, CA $102,330
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

5 Tips To Maximize Your Earnings As A RN-To-BSN Degree Holder

We all like the idea of making more money, right? After you graduate from an RN-to-BSN program, you may find yourself wondering what opportunities are available that could help boost your income even more. So, I’d like to share a few ideas with you.

1. Work in Critical Care:

Because the environment is stressful and fewer nurses want to work in them, many employers offer higher salaries to nurses who work in critical care areas.

2. Get Certified in a Specialty:

The American Nurses Credentialing Centers offers several specialty certifications in areas such as pediatrics, critical care, and nursing leadership. Earning a specialty certification could help boost your income by several thousands of dollars.

3. Take night, weekend, or holiday work:

One of the most frustrating things for employers in healthcare facilities is not having enough nurses to work nights, weekends, or holidays. So, it is not uncommon for them to offer pay incentives for nurses willing to take on these schedules.

4. Take on a nursing or healthcare-related side gig:

Lots of nurses maximize their earnings by taking on side jobs not related to their regular jobs. One excellent way to boost your income is by becoming a certified CPR instructor. The class to become an instructor is short and doesn’t cost much, but the potential for earning is unlimited, depending on how many classes you offer.

5. Do some freelance writing:

This is one of my favorite things to mention when nurses ask me how to boost earning potential. Freelance nurse writers may write articles, do research about important nursing-relevant topics, or run a blog. The income potential as a freelance nurse writer is unlimited... and the big plus? You can do it on your own time.


How Many Annual Job Openings Are There For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The potential for finding work as an RN-to-BSN program graduate is promising. There is anticipation of approximately 27,670 new jobs and 166,830 replacement jobs for BSN nurses, a total of 194,500 job

NewReplacementTotal Annual
Job Openings
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Work Settings Have The Highest Job Openings For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

RN-to-BSN program graduates and degree holders will see the highest number of job openings in settings such as General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, Offices of Physicians, Home Health Care Services, Outpatient Care Centers, and Nursing Care Facilities.

Rank Work Setting
1 General Medical and Surgical Hospitals
2 Offices of Physicians
3 Home Health Care Services
4 Outpatient Care Centers
5 Nursing Care Facilities
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

How Many Annual Job Openings Are There For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders In Your State?

Annual job openings for jobs vary from state to state. Cost of living, size of the geographical area and population are common factors that impact the need for jobs and how many become available each year. For example, Idaho anticipates 280 job openings for graduates of RN-to-BSN programs, while California should experience nearly 24,000.

State New Replacement Total Annual
Job Openings
Alabama 538 2,962 3,500
Alaska 40 320 360
Arizona 757 1,353 2,110
Arkansas 355 1,495 1,850
California 5,340 18,510 23,850
Colorado 1,563 3,247 4,810
Connecticut 286 2,164 2,450
Delaware 241 709 950
Florida 3,053 10,947 14,000
Georgia 1,742 4,598 6,340
Hawaii 142 658 800
Idaho 283 -3 280
Illinois 1,666 7,594 9,260
Indiana 854 3,896 4,750
Iowa 518 1,972 2,490
Kansas 249 1,721 1,970
Kentucky 615 2,665 3,280
Louisiana N/A N/A N/A
Maine 97 823 920
Maryland 1,313 3,837 5,150
Massachusetts 735 4,985 5,720
Michigan 988 5,632 6,620
Minnesota 879 4,021 4,900
Mississippi 198 2 200
Missouri 1,213 4,317 5,530
Montana 109 591 700
Nebraska 295 1,495 1,790
Nevada 146 394 540
New Hampshire 175 785 960
New Jersey 962 4,818 5,780
New Mexico 208 1,032 1,240
New York 4,923 11,987 16,910
North Carolina 1,127 5,893 7,020
North Dakota 161 569 730
Ohio 1,225 7,135 8,360
Oklahoma 323 1,987 2,310
Oregon 630 2,380 3,010
Pennsylvania 1,897 8,613 10,510
Rhode Island 52 708 760
South Carolina 421 2,509 2,930
South Dakota 170 740 910
Tennessee 764 3,526 4,290
Texas 3,621 12,509 16,130
Utah 659 1,431 2,090
Vermont 54 376 430
Virginia 774 3,726 4,500
Washington 1,194 4,626 5,820
West Virginia 319 1,231 1,550
Wisconsin 442 3,158 3,600
Wyoming 82 298 380

What States Have The Highest Annual Job Openings For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The states with the highest annual job openings for RN-to-BSN degree holders are California, New York, Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, North Carolina, Michigan, and Georgia.

Rank State New Replacement Annual
Job Openings
1 California 5,340 18,510 23,850
2 New York 4,923 11,987 16,910
3 Texas 3,621 12,509 16,130
4 Florida 3,053 10,947 14,000
5 Pennsylvania 1,897 8,613 10,510
6 Illinois 1,666 7,594 9,260
7 Ohio 1,225 7,135 8,360
8 North Carolina 1,127 5,893 7,020
9 Michigan 988 5,632 6,620
10 Georgia 1,742 4,598 6,340


What Is The 10-Year Job Outlook For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for RN-to-BSN degree holders is positive. Nationwide, nurses with this degree should see an 8.99% growth in jobs.

(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What Are The Top 5 Reasons Contributing To The Demand For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

It is no secret that there is a need for nurses everywhere, especially nurses with at least a Bachelor of Science in nursing. As you research the top accredited RN-to-BSN programs, you may also consider some reasons why this is a perfect career option for you. The following are the top five reasons contributing to the demand for BSN-degree holders.

1. Baby-Boomer Nurses Retiring:

As nurses from the baby-boomer population age and reach retirement age, there is a need for new nurses to fill those spots.

2. Higher Incidence of Chronic Health Conditions:

Unfortunately, the occurrence of chronic health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease mean more people require high-quality nursing care. Who better to fill that need than someone like you after you graduate from an accredited RN-to-BSN degree program?

3. Growing Population:

As the population continues to grow, that means there are more people in need of nursing and health-related services. BSN nurses are in an excellent position to provide the type of quality, evidence-based, culturally sensitive nursing that populations need.

4. Shortage of Available Nursing School Placement Opportunities:

The lack of nursing faculty nationwide has led to nursing programs turning away well-qualified applicants from programs, making it difficult to fill the void caused by replacement jobs and the new jobs created by a need in certain communities.

5. COVID-19:

Let’s face it, even the most dedicated among us were not prepared for the COVID-19 pandemic and how it left nurses feeling. Since the pandemic began, thousands of nurses nationwide have quit their jobs, taken extended leaves of absence, or found other places to work, resulting in the need to fill even more nursing vacancies.

What Is The 10-Year Job Outlook For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders In Your State?

The ten-year job outlook for RN-to-BSN degree holders is positive, with states seeing increases from 4% in Rhode Island to 35.01% in Arizona. States like Alaska, Connecticut, and Kansas can anticipate a little less than 10% increases, while Colorado, Delaware, New York, and Utah should see more than 20% in available jobs.

State 10-Year Job
Outlook (2018-2028
Alabama +10.21%
Alaska +6.83%
Arizona +35.01%
Arkansas +13.51%
California +16.70%
Colorado +29.49%
Connecticut +7.33%
Delaware +20.02%
Florida +16.08%
Georgia +22.49%
Hawaii +12.22%
Idaho +19.87%
Illinois +12.44%
Indiana +12.43%
Iowa +15.11%
Kansas +8.06%
Kentucky +13.11%
Louisiana N/A
Maine +6.53%
Maryland +21.66%
Massachusetts +8.20%
Michigan +9.82%
Minnesota +12.40%
Mississippi +6.12%
Missouri +16.24%
Montana +10.40%
Nebraska +11.12%
Nevada +22.29%
New Hampshire +12.65%
New Jersey +11.26%
New Mexico +11.35%
New York +24.63%
North Carolina +10.77%
North Dakota +16.53%
Ohio +9.61%
Oklahoma +9.10%
Oregon +15.21%
Pennsylvania +12.50%
Rhode Island +4.00%
South Carolina +9.39%
South Dakota +13.14%
Tennessee +12.27%
Texas +16.75%
Utah +28.15%
Vermont +7.96%
Virginia +11.74%
Washington +20.48%
West Virginia +14.89%
Wisconsin +7.76%
Wyoming +16.17%

What States Have The Highest 10-Year Job Outlook For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The states with the highest ten-year job outlook for RN-to-BSN degree holders are Arizona, Colorado, Utah, New York, Georgia, Nevada, Maryland, Washington, Delaware, and Idaho. According to CareerOneStop, these states should see increases in jobs between 19.87 and 35.01% over the next decade.

Rank State 10-Year Job
Outlook (2018-2028)
1 Arizona +35.01%
2 Colorado +29.49%
3 Utah +28.15%
4 New York +24.63%
5 Georgia +22.49%
6 Nevada +22.29%
7 Maryland +21.66%
8 Washington +20.48%
9 Delaware +20.02%
10 Idaho +19.87%


1. American Academy of Nursing:

The American Academy of Nursing serves the nursing profession and the public by initiating efforts to advance health policy through nursing leadership and organizational excellence. Academy Fellows include university presidents and deans, state and federal political appointees, and hospital chief executives.

2. American Association of Critical-Care Nurses:

The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses is dedicated to creating healthcare systems devoted to the needs of patients and families where critical care nurses can make vital contributions.

3. American Nurses Association:

The American Nurses Association is comprised of the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the American Nurses Foundation, and the American Nurses Association. The Association uses the strengths of each member organization to promote excellence in nursing practice and influence policies related to nursing and healthcare.

4. American Organization for Nursing Leadership:

The American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL) works to promote and transform healthcare through influential, expert nursing leadership. The Organization uses innovative, competency-based learning experiences to advance the professional development of those in nursing leadership.

5. Association of Nursing Professional Development:

The Association of Nursing Professional Development (ANPD) promotes nursing professional development to enhance patient healthcare outcomes.

6. Emergency Nursing Association:

The Emergency Nursing Association is the #1 association dedicated to defining and promoting the future of emergency nursing. The Association promotes lifelong learning and a culture of inquiry, inclusion, mutual respect, diversity, and compassion.

7. National League for Nursing:

The National League for Nursing is dedicated to nursing excellence and is one of the top organizations for nursing faculty and leaders in nursing education. The organization offers networking opportunities, nursing research grants, and professional development opportunities.

8. National Student Nurses Association:

The National Student Nurses Association brings together newly graduated nurses and registered nurses enrolled in RN-to-BSN programs to promote skill development, accountability, and to develop nurses prepared to lead the profession.

9. Society of Pediatric Nurses:

The Society of Pediatric Nurses represents nearly 4,000 pediatric nurses nationwide. The Society supports pediatric nurses by providing educational resources, networking opportunities, and up-to-date information about trends in pediatric nursing.

10. The American Board of Nursing Specialties:

The American Board of Nursing Specialties promotes specialty nursing certification, with the belief that nurses who focus on specialties play an integral role in improving patient outcomes.


Graduates of RN-to-BSN programs don’t have to stop with a BSN degree. There are several opportunities for advancement. Here are a few examples of the best advancement opportunities for RN-to-BSN degree holders.

1. Nurse Practitioner:

If you are ready for an advanced practice role that offers more autonomy, an excellent career-advancing opportunity is to become a nurse practitioner. As a nurse practitioner, you can choose from several specialty focuses including Family, Adult, Pediatric, or Geriatric Nurse Practitioner.

2. Informatics Nurse:

As an informatics nurse, you will manage and communicate data to other nurses and healthcare professionals, patients, and consumers. Informatics nurses act as liaisons between IT and nursing and train other nurses on new technologies.

3. Nurse Educator:

If you like the idea of having a significant impact on the future of nursing, the role of a nurse educator could be the perfect career advancement opportunity for you. As a nurse educator, you may teach students in the classroom and in clinical settings. Your contributions can impact the profession for years to come.


Deciding to return to nursing school or pursue a higher degree can be exciting but may also be a source of anxiety. The following are a few tips to help improve your chances of acceptance to RN-to-BSN programs and help reduce the stress of the application process.

1. Know the nursing program’s GPA requirement for admission and make sure you have it.

Nursing schools establish admission criteria for their RN-to-BSN programs, and grade-point-average is one of the major things they consider. If your GPA from previous college coursework is teetering on the edge of their minimum, it may be a good idea to take a couple of courses to help bring it up. Consider finding an online class or two that the college will accept as transfer credit.

2. Find out how much work experience you need.

The admission requirements for RN-to-BSN programs usually include having a minimum amount of work experience. Once you know which school or schools you’d like to apply for, verify their work experience requirements. If you get this information as early as possible, you should be able to get enough experience before applying, which will help improve your chances of acceptance.

3. Practice nursing school interview questions.

Most RN-to-BSN programs require applicants to participate in an admissions interview. This is an opportunity for faculty to get to know you and determine if you are a good fit for their program.

4. Meet all the general education and nursing prerequisite requirements as soon as possible.

If you have already graduated from an associate degree nursing program, chances are you have most, if not all, of the general education and nursing prerequisites you need. However because each nursing school’s curriculum is different, be sure to verify prerequisite coursework requirements so you don’t miss out!

5. Get yourself together!

Admission faculty for RN-to-BSN degree programs are looking for nurses who demonstrate professionalism. One key way to do this is to be prepared. Make sure your resume is current, complete every part of the admissions application, and submit everything ON TIME!

6. Get excellent letters of recommendation.

Most nursing programs, including RN-to-BSN degree programs, require students to submit at least three letters of professional recommendation. These letters need to come from former college instructors or past or present employers or supervisors. Make sure the letter speaks of your professional abilities and that the contact information for the letter writer is up-to-date.

7. Apply to more than one school.

Admission to RN-to-BSN programs can be quite competitive. Even if you meet all the admissions criteria, there is still a chance you may not receive an offer of admission. By applying to more than one school, you increase your chances of receiving an admission offer.


Throughout this article, we have addressed the question, “What are the best RN-to-BSN degree programs in the nation?” As a nurse and nurse educator, I encourage all nurses to explore opportunities for career advancement. If you have been considering a level-up in your career and are interested in earning a BSN, the 35 best accredited online and campus RN-to-BSN programs in the nation for 2022 featured in this article offer some excellent opportunities.


1. Are RN-To-BSN Programs Hard To Get Into?

Admission to RN-to-BSN programs can be quite competitive. If you are considering applying for one of these programs, be sure to get information about the schools and programs and get a jump on meeting the criteria. Apply early, and consider applying to more than one school.

2. Is There A Waiting List For RN-To-BSN Programs?

Some RN-to-BSN programs have waiting lists. However, others offer several start dates throughout the year.

3. Do RN-To-BSN Programs Have To Be Accredited?

Nursing schools do not have to be accredited. However, graduating from a program that is not accredited could cause problems when it comes to taking the NCLEX-RN. I strongly recommend choosing only accredited RN-to-BSN programs.

4. Are Online RN-To-BSN Programs Accredited?

There are several accredited online RN-to-BSN programs.

5. Typically, How Long Does The RN-To-BSN Program Take To Complete?

You can complete an RN-to-BSN program in as few as 12 months of full-time study. The average length of time for these programs is 12-15 months.

6. How Can I Complete The RN-To-BSN Program Faster?

The best way to complete your RN-to-BSN faster is to be sure all your general education and nursing prerequisites are complete prior to enrolling. Also, if the school offers part-time or full-time options, the full-time option will allow you to complete the program faster.

7. Typically, How Much Does The RN-To-BSN Program Cost?

RN-to-BSN programs may cost anywhere from $5,000 to more than $40,000. The number of previous credits you transfer and the length of time you are enrolled are the largest determinants of your total cost.

8. Are Scholarships Available For RN-To-BSN Students?

There are many scholarship opportunities available for RN-to-BSN students. Check with your school, employer, and online websites for lists of available scholarships.

9. Are Grants Available For RN-To-BSN Students?

RN-to-BSN program students may qualify for some grants to help offset the expenses related to the program. Most schools require all students to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which determines eligibility for federally funded grants and loans.

10. Are Student Loans Available For RN-To-BSN Programs?

Yes, there are a variety of student loans available for RN-to-BSN programs. You may choose government-funded loans, private bank loans, or employer-sponsored loans.

11. Are ACT Scores Required For Admission Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

Some colleges and universities require ACT scores for admission to RN-to-BSN programs, while others do not. An admissions counselor can advise you regarding what testing, if any, is required for admissions.

12. Are SAT Scores Required For Admission Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

Although some schools may require SAT scores as part of admission criteria to their RN-to-BSN programs, others may not. Consult with the admissions department at any school that interests you to verify their guidelines for standardized testing.

13. What Is The HESI Exam And Is It Required For Admission Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

The HESI exam is an admissions test used by many nursing schools as part of their admissions process. Although some RN-to-BSN programs may require the exam, it is more commonly used for BSN pre-licensure programs.

14. What Is The TEAS Exam And Is It Required For Admission Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

The TEAS exam is used to determine a prospective student’s potential for success in nursing school. Because students in RN-to-BSN programs already have an associate degree and are licensed nurses, these programs usually do not require the exam as part of admission criteria.

15. Is Professional Nursing Experience Required To Be Accepted Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

Some nursing schools may require professional nursing experience as part of admission criteria. However, other schools offer entry into their accredited RN-to-BSN degree programs before the applicant has passed the NCLEX-RN, as long as the associate degree has been conferred. In these cases, students usually must obtain their RN license within a few months of the RN-to-BSN program beginning.

16. What Is The Minimum GPA Required To Get Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

Each school determines admission criteria for its RN-to-BSN programs, so the minimum GPA may vary somewhat. The average minimum GPA required is a 3.0 on a 4.0 grading scale on all college-level coursework.

17. Can I Get Into RN-To-BSN Programs With A Low GPA?

It is left to the school’s discretion whether to admit an applicant with a low GPA. One thing I would caution, however, is that if your pre-nursing and general education GPA is low, you may find that you struggle in upper-level nursing classes.

18. What If My GPA Is Below The Minimum Requirement, Can I Still Get Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

While some schools may make an exception to the GPA requirement under certain circumstances, it is not common.

19. Can International Students Apply To RN-TO-BSN Programs?

Many nursing schools accept international students into their RN-to-BSN programs.

20. What Prerequisites Are Required To Get Into RN-To-BSN Programs?

Prerequisite courses for RN-to-BSN programs include College Algebra, Chemistry, Biology, Anatomy & Physiology, Nutrition, Nursing Fundamentals, and Maternal & Child Nursing.

21. Do I Need To Complete The Prerequisites Before I Apply To RN-To-BSN Programs?

Each school determines the number of prerequisites an applicant must complete before admission to its RN-to-BSN program.

22. What Are The Total Number Of Courses In A RN-To-BSN Program?

The number of courses required for RN-to-BSN programs varies. The program’s curriculum may include from 5 to 10 classes or more.

23. How Many Credits Do I Need To Graduate From A RN-To-BSN Program?

Most RN-to-BSN degree programs have a curriculum that includes 24-35 credit hours. However, this number may vary, depending on your school.

24. Does The RN-To-BSN Program Curriculum Include Clinical Training?

RN-to-BSN programs typically have some type of clinical training incorporated into their curriculum. Most programs include the clinical component in their Transitions to Leadership or Public Health classes.

25. Exactly, How Many Clinical Training Hours Are There In A RN-To-BSN Program?

The clinical training hours for RN-to-BSN programs vary, but most require between 45 and 120 hours.

26. What Are The Hardest Classes In A RN-To-BSN Program?

Some of the hardest classes in accredited RN-to-BSN programs include Organic Chemistry, Pathophysiology, Evidence-Based Practice, and Advanced Pharmacology.

27. How Many Hours Do I Need To Study For The RN-To-BSN Program?

As a general rule, it is recommended that students study for at least three hours for each hour of instruction. For example, if your course load includes 12 credit hours of coursework, then you should plan on spending at least 36 hours each week studying.

28. How Hard Is It To Complete The RN-To-BSN Program?

Because of the required coursework, RN-to-BSN programs can be challenging. However, with careful planning and dedication, you can accomplish the goal of completing this program and earning your BSN degree.

29. Are There Any Online RN-To-BSN Programs?

There are several opportunities for online RN-to-BSN programs.

30. Are There Any Part-Time RN-To-BSN Programs?

Some nursing schools do offer part-time RN-to-BSN programs.

31. Can I Work Part-Time And Successfully Complete The RN-To-BSN Program?

Many students in RN-to-BSN programs work part-time and successfully complete the program.

32. Can I Work Full-Time And Successfully Complete The RN-To-BSN Program?

It is not uncommon for students in RN-to-BSN programs to continue working full-time. With time management and proper planning, you can be successful.

33. What Is The Best RN-To-BSN Program In The Nation?

The University of Maryland is home to the best RN-to-BSN program in the United States.

University of Maryland - Baltimore, MD

34. What Is The Best RN-To-BSN Program In California?

The best RN-to-BSN program in California is offered at San Diego State University.

San Diego State University - San Diego, CA

35. What Is The Best RN-To-BSN Program In Florida?

The University of South Florida offers the best RN-to-BSN program in Florida.

University of South Florida - Tampa, FL

36. What Is The Best RN-To-BSN Program In New York?

Stony Brook University offers the best RN-to-BSN program in New York.

Stony Brook University - Stony Brook, NY

37. What Is The Best RN-To-BSN Program In Texas?

The best RN-to-BSN program in Texas is offered at the University of Texas-Austin.

University of Texas-Austin - Austin, TX

38. Are New RN-To-BSN Graduates In High Demand?

Yes, there is a high demand for nurses nationwide, especially BSN-prepared nurses like RN-to-BSN graduates.

39. How Many Hours A Week Does A RN-To-BSN Degree Holder Work?

The number of hours you work as an RN-to-BSN degree holder will depend on the job you take and whether you choose to work part-time or full-time.

40. How Much Does A New RN-To-BSN Graduate Make?

The entry-level salary for new RN-to-BSN graduates is approximately $59,450 yearly.


41. On An Average, How Much Does A RN-To-BSN Degree Holder Make?

The average annual income for RN-to-BSN degree holders nationwide is $82,750.


42. What State Pays The Highest Salary For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

Currently, California is the state that offers the highest salary for RN-to-BSN degree holders. Salaries for these nurses in the state average $124,000 yearly.


43. What Metro Pays The Highest Salary For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

The San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California metro pays RN-to-BSN degree holders the highest salaries, with nurses there earning an average of $155,230.

San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA

44. What State Has The Highest Annual Job Openings For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

California has the highest annual job openings, with an average of 23,850 new and replacement jobs available yearly for RN-to-BSN degree holders.


45. What State Has The Best Job Outlook For RN-To-BSN Degree Holders?

Arizona has the best job outlook for RN-to-BSN degree holders. The state anticipates a 35.01% increase in positions for these nurses over the next decade.


46. Are RN-To-BSN Degree Holders Happy With Their Career?

According to current research, nearly 90% of RN-to-BSN degree holders are happy with their careers.

47. Is There A Pay Increase From RN-To-BSN?

Nurses who go from RN-to-BSN make approximately $6,830 more yearly, an 8.82% increase.

BSN ADN Difference
Number %
$84,250 $77,420 +$6,830 +8.82%

48. Should I Do RN-To-BSN OR RN To MSN?

Both RN-to-BSN and RN-to-MSN programs have advantages. You should consider your long-term career goals to help you decide which program is best for you. For example, if you plan to pursue opportunities for advanced practice, such as becoming a Nurse Practitioner or Nurse Educator, you will need a master’s degree. If you have no intention of graduate-level pursuits, an RN-to-BSN program could be the best option for you.

49. Can I Skip RN And Go To BSN?

Yes, it is possible to earn a BSN without first becoming an RN. The decision to pursue your BSN instead of earning an associate RN and then transitioning is up to you.

50. Do Hospitals Pay For RN-To-BSN Programs?

Some hospitals and other healthcare organizations offer tuition reimbursement or other need or merit-based scholarships and funding for employees who wish to pursue a bachelor’s degree through RN-to-BSN programs.

51. What Is Pre-RN-To-BSN?

Pre-RN-to-BSN is an educational track designed to prepare students for entry into the baccalaureate nursing program. This includes courses such as Anatomy & Physiology, Nutrition, Microbiology, Chemistry, Introductory Psychology, Developmental Psychology, and Statistics.

52. Do I Need Statistics For RN-To-BSN?

The RN-to-BSN program curriculum typically includes Statistics as one of the general education courses you must take before enrolling in upper-level nursing classes.

53. Do I Need Math For RN-To-BSN?

Almost all RN-to-BSN programs require students to take at least one college-level math course.

Darby Faubion BSN, RN
Darby Faubion is a nurse and Allied Health educator with over twenty years of experience. She has assisted in developing curriculum for nursing programs and has instructed students at both community college and university levels. Because of her love of nursing education, Darby became a test-taking strategist and NCLEX prep coach and assists nursing graduates across the United States who are preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).