12 mo. diploma program vs. 2.5 year program


  1. I am applying to my local hospital's diploma program (associate degree obtained too) and I have 2 options:

    (1) because I have a BA already, I could take the 12 month accelerated program. All pre-reqs must be completed before starting this program. That would be no problem.

    (2) take the regular track which is 2.5 years. I would still have the pre-reqs completed, so it would be nursing classes only (about 8-10 credits per semester).

    My question is "how difficult would the accelerated program be?" I don't want set myself up for something that I might not be able to handle. The accelerated program is Monday thru Thursday, so I would have 3 days off to study. I also have a medically-challenged son whose condition requires hospitalizations.

    What would most of you do if you had the choice? I hear that nursing school is hard enough, so would the accelerated program be just too much to handle?

    Thanks in advance.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   suzanne4
    Depends on how well that you do woth studying, as well as what your long term goals are. If they include working out of the US as an RN at all, the acclerated programs are currently not accepted out of the US. Just something to think about.
  4. by   lcbradley
    Defiinitely think carefully about your given situation with your son. The accelerated program sounds nice, but you will of course do more in a shorter amount of time. Do you have a good support system in place and help with your son when you must study for exams and go to clinicals, etc. etc.? If so, I say go accelerated if the program is accredited and get it over with. I have a degree also and I am currently going the technical college (2-year) route. I wish my school offered such.
  5. by   cn2007rn
    I also chose between an accelerated program and an associate's program. I chose the associate's program which is 2 years compared to a 14 month accelerated program. I felt the accelerated program was too intense and too expensive.

    I heard that in the accelerated program, you can go through and never learn or perform all of the nursing skills needed. I heard you feel more loss after getting a job and it takes longer to catch up.

    I also did not do the accelerated program because I would not have been able to work, like you said, it's all day 4 days a week, that doesn't leave much time left for anything else. Right now, the hospital I work part-time at, pays for some of my schooling which is also why I wanted to be able to work during school.

    Just letting you know what I chose to do! Good luck!
  6. by   DD-RN
    Thanks for the replies. I appreciate the advice. My first choice is the community college (2 year associate's degree). But they only accept 40 out of 900 applicants. That leaves me with the 2 diploma program options at the hospital's nursing school.

    I have a great support system for my son. He is actually the reason why I want to become a nurse. After 4 brain surgeries and dozens of hospitalizations, the time is right for me now to pursue nursing. I just hope that he does not have a set-back and require another surgery while I am in school (because I would have to quit).

    My last option is do an LPN program and then bridge to RN. This would be most economical and I would not be rushed.

    Anyway, I am applying to all of the above options and will see where I get accepted. That may lead me to my answer too.

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