Advice needed on "accelerated nursing programs"

  1. Hi.

    I am considering a program through the university of wisconsin Oshkosh that allows those individuals with a bachelor's degree in any field, to enter their online accelerated program and complete a bachelor's degree in nursing in ONE year. The cost is $28,000.
    Has anyone gone through such a program? Any feedback would be appreciated, as I am trying to decide between this program and an associates degree program which costs about $6,000 to complete.

    Thank you!
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   rstewart
    You know, one thing I've noticed is that the nursing academic community has developed all manner of accelerated, online and otherwise nontraditional programs which result in BSN and higher degrees; But while they are quicker/more convenient to complete they invariably cost a small fortune.
  4. by   Jolie
    Wisconsin's nursing program has a good reputation, but $28,000 for one year of instruction seems outrageous! That sounds more like Ivy League grad school tuition! Are you "in-state"? What kind of financial aid would you be able to get?

    Good luck whatever you decide!
  5. by   Jolie
    I just re-read your initial post, and noticed that this is on-line instruction. I'm not sure that on-line instruction would be the best way to go for someone trying to complete a very intense course of study in a new field. I think on-line programs are great for RNs completing their BSNs or obtaining Master's Degrees, but as someone completely new to the field of nursing, I think you would benefit from face to face contact with fellow students and instructors.
  6. by   gauge14iv
    Jolie - I tend to agree with that in most cases. Anyone who takes on a course of study online must be ready to be a very independant learner and very self disciplined.

    I know people who would fare VERY well in this sort of program, but not many. It is definately not for everyone.

    If you know that you are a procrastinator of any sort an online program is not for you.
  7. by   SchoolRN,BSN
    Like you, I have another degree & looked into an accelerated program. It is full time, starting in the summer for 18 mo & you have a BSN when you are done.

    For me, it would require an hour + drive everyday, with class from 8-5 and sometimes other times as well. I have been a stay at home mom for the last 13 years & therefore, I made the decision to attend a local community college instead of doing the accelerated program even though it will take me three years as opposed to one. If I didn't have kids I would have done the accelerated program, no question. But since I have four with one not yet in elementary school, I chose to take the longer route so I didn't totally miss out on my family's life for 18 mo. That was what I needed to do, but I can see why others would choose the shorter program.

    I have a great support system & probably could have worked it out if I had wanted to badly enough, but I just couldn't do that to my kids, especially my 3 year old. After being home for so long, I don't think I could switch gears & be out of the house by 6am everyday. Heck, I don't even know when I am going to find time to work when I do finish school! I'm so busy now, I constantly find myself wondering what shift I'll be able to get that won't require me to miss too many things that my kids are in. Big time guilt complex I guess.

    I wish you the best of luck in your decision. It would be really tempting to just get it over with, but make sure you look at how much time you will be spending on homework, etc... It is an accelerated program & I would assume that means it will require more time from the student than a traditional program would.

    Good luck with your decision!

    Heather
  8. by   LiliRN
    I dunno. We have the same type of program in AZ at NAU...but that was 16 months in class am from what I'm hearing the programm is a total bust. Administrators are complaining that nurses are coming out with not even the basic clinical knowledge and are hesitant even to hire nurses who come out of programs like this. Seriously no offense, but I cringe at the thought of having a nurse with one year of study under his/her belt...just as a patient, not even thinking about the liability of a charge nurse.
  9. by   countrychic76
    please do one thing though. make sure it is valid I have heard of nurses who have paid to do the online program and found out that the degree was not good. I know of one college around here they are doing research as well and that they are not a valid program. I know some states don't accept online degrees, just make sure you do all your research to see if is is valid. Although for $28,000 sound expensive, Alvernia bachelor program is $16,000 a year and that is a private catholic school.
  10. by   1BlessedRN
    Hi I agree with some of the other posters coming into this field with no experience is pretty traumatic and nursing requires so much critical thinking and prioritizing this field is very diverse....my advise is to attend a local college and get into the traditional classroom setting, also make sure that the online degree is accredited and valid....
  11. by   Quickbeam
    I went through an accelerated program which was wonderful. That was 20 years ago and the program is celebrating its 30th anniversary. Armed with a bachelor's degree in another field, you get your BSN in one calendar year.

    My program was not online. I will tell you that these programs are very intense and brutal. You have to be able to devote yourself to it 100%. It depends on you if the cost of the program is overshadowed by the "opportunity cost" of being able to get to work sooner. For me, that was critical.

    Look at your target program carefully. Ask about their wash out rate and any tuition reimbursement possibilities. For example, 2 people in my program got pregnant and were able to finish with the next class. All accelerated programs operate on a "no stumbles" basis...there isn't much room for crises or personal emergencies.
  12. by   Works2xs
    Quote from LiliRN
    I dunno. We have the same type of program in AZ at NAU...but that was 16 months in class am from what I'm hearing the programm is a total bust. Administrators are complaining that nurses are coming out with not even the basic clinical knowledge and are hesitant even to hire nurses who come out of programs like this. Seriously no offense, but I cringe at the thought of having a nurse with one year of study under his/her belt...just as a patient, not even thinking about the liability of a charge nurse.
    I'm sure there are programs that are "a bust." However, folks should know that this is a broad brush to be painting a picture of all accelerated programs with. I'm about four weeks away from completing just such a program. Don't know what other programs in other states are like, but the program I'm in doesn't short anything. Same number of clinical hours, class hours, and lab times as our "traditional" bretheren (state BON wouldn't have it any other way). The only difference is that we spend about twice the average time working during our year so we finish that much faster. So I'm not don't know what anybody is "cringing" about.

    In regards to what employers are thinking.. again, better look at the program and the area you are in. My program was something around $15k and the entire cost, including lab fees, was covered by a scholarship from one of the region's largest healthcare networks. So while I don't doubt that there are those that think this is some sort of rip-off, there are also those who seek these graduates out. Why? Consider this story...

    On the first day of the new year, a faculty member arrived at their class 15 minutes early in order to make certain all was ready. When she arrived, she found the professor from the previous session still in the class, packing up his teaching materials. The room also still full of students. After loitering in the hall for a few minutes while waiting for the class to empty, the instructor went back into the class to discover that the students already seated were not from the previous class. They were, in fact, second-degree students and they were ready to learn.

    This illustrates what some research has shown to be the case. Second degree students are usually older, more focused, and more inclined to take the initiative in learning their new craft. They actively seek out learning opportunities and aren't afraid to probe, ask questions, and when presented with conflicting information, aren't afraid to confront their professors. I mean, think about it... these folks have already gone through the college drill. Many of them have already spent many years working as a professional. For them to spend the sort of effort that's needed to finish such a program, they've got to be highly motivated and certain that they're doing what they were meant to be doing.

    So, highly motivated, already using critical thinking skills, knowledge of how the "real world" works, dedicated, and undoubtedly hard working. Why wouldn't you want to have this sort of person working with you?

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