Accelerated BSN Students: Please share your experiences! - page 2

F0r those who are either going through the program or have already graduated: 1) Did you feel prepared to work as an RN after graduating? 2) Would you do an accelerated BSN again if you were to... Read More

  1. by   TopCat1234
    Quote from megsd
    is there a website that will show pass rates for the nclex (i hope i typed that right) exam for different programs? that seems like a really good thing to look at.
    megsd, try your state's board of nursing website. i'm looking at pass rates for board approved programs in california and it's quite surprising. the mount saint mary's adn program has a significantly lower pass rate than their bsn program - but it doesn't distinguish between the regular bsn and the accelerated bsn. hmmm.....

    you can also contact the schools you are interested in directly.

    topcat
  2. by   TLC RN
    Quote from hobbes
    I'm in the exact situation as you with regard to eventually wanting to apply to CRNA school and for this reason I didn't want to go the accelerated route. However, life circumstances will require me to get a degree faster than I would like so it's really going to be tough. My program starts in the fall and I'm going to at least try and read the Patho or Pharm books over the summer to get a head start. It's going to be real tough, but if you set your mind to do it you can. Good luck.
    Hobbes-

    Do you feel the accelerated route will hurt your chances of getting into CRNA school?
  3. by   hllybenn
    I graduated Oct 03 from a 11 month BSN program- had a previous BS and Master's...

    1) Did you feel prepared to work as an RN after graduating?
    Completely- Orientation is the key no matter where you go- there are days where i realize I know very little but there are days when I "wow" myself with how much I learned (not only in school but on the job for 6 months)
    2) Would you do an accelerated BSN again if you were to do it over again?
    YES- WITHOUT A DOUBT- It got me what I wanted in the quickest amount of time- I am an RN, BSN
    3) Will it be possible to work at least one day during the weekends?
    For us it was impossible. Maybe like four hours on a saturday evening or something- but I AM GLAD I DID NOT WORK! WE were 11 months 5 days a week..
    4) How many days of clinicals do you have?
    2-3 per quarter (4 quarters)
    5) Did you have any time for social life?
    Somewhat- you pick your battles- I am married and I knew I needed to give my husband some time so I would bear down and get "X" amount of work done and then I would get to spend time with him. I like to refer to that year of my life as "what I abandoned" because I did- we sold our house and moved so that we could afford for me to do this- and it WAS WORTH IT- ONE MILLION TIMES OVER...

    If you can do an accelerated program-meaning you have the credit/degree- DO IT-do not let all that (money, time and knowledge) go to waste. The BSN may not reward you on the first job out of school (or your previous degrees) cause we are all "graduate nurses" to begin but it willhelp somewhere.
  4. by   Megsd
    Quote from topcat1234
    megsd, try your state's board of nursing website. i'm looking at pass rates for board approved programs in california and it's quite surprising. the mount saint mary's adn program has a significantly lower pass rate than their bsn program - but it doesn't distinguish between the regular bsn and the accelerated bsn. hmmm.....

    you can also contact the schools you are interested in directly.

    topcat
    thanks for the advice. i'll start scouring board of nursing websites.

    --meghan
  5. by   hobbes
    Quote from Tootyx121
    Hobbes-

    Do you feel the accelerated route will hurt your chances of getting into CRNA school?
    It has the potential to hurt my chances only because it will probably be harder to make the top grades due to the intensity of the program. Now, having said that I'm going to work that much harder to make sure that I do get good grades. However, I've not going to stress too much over it because there's not much I can do about it at this point.
  6. by   hobbes
    Quote from hllybenn
    I graduated Oct 03 from a 11 month BSN program- had a previous BS and Master's...

    1) Did you feel prepared to work as an RN after graduating?
    Completely- Orientation is the key no matter where you go- there are days where i realize I know very little but there are days when I "wow" myself with how much I learned (not only in school but on the job for 6 months)
    2) Would you do an accelerated BSN again if you were to do it over again?
    YES- WITHOUT A DOUBT- It got me what I wanted in the quickest amount of time- I am an RN, BSN
    3) Will it be possible to work at least one day during the weekends?
    For us it was impossible. Maybe like four hours on a saturday evening or something- but I AM GLAD I DID NOT WORK! WE were 11 months 5 days a week..
    4) How many days of clinicals do you have?
    2-3 per quarter (4 quarters)
    5) Did you have any time for social life?
    Somewhat- you pick your battles- I am married and I knew I needed to give my husband some time so I would bear down and get "X" amount of work done and then I would get to spend time with him. I like to refer to that year of my life as "what I abandoned" because I did- we sold our house and moved so that we could afford for me to do this- and it WAS WORTH IT- ONE MILLION TIMES OVER...

    If you can do an accelerated program-meaning you have the credit/degree- DO IT-do not let all that (money, time and knowledge) go to waste. The BSN may not reward you on the first job out of school (or your previous degrees) cause we are all "graduate nurses" to begin but it willhelp somewhere.

    Good post! Even though I originally wanted to go into the traditional program, for a motivated person I think an accelerated program is beneficial. I'm not really that concerned about clinical hours because the bottom line is you're going to learn how to be a nurse once you graduate and are actually nursing. Clinical experience in school can only go so far and there are probably few graduate nurses that are going to feel completely competent until after they have been on-the-job for awhile - there's just too much to learn.
  7. by   Sheri257
    Quote from hobbes
    Good post! Even though I originally wanted to go into the traditional program, for a motivated person I think an accelerated program is beneficial. I'm not really that concerned about clinical hours because the bottom line is you're going to learn how to be a nurse once you graduate and are actually nursing. Clinical experience in school can only go so far and there are probably few graduate nurses that are going to feel completely competent until after they have been on-the-job for awhile - there's just too much to learn.
    I wouldn't necessarily agree with that conclusion. Of course, it depends upon the employer, but I've talked to some of them and clinical hours, as well as the structure of the program, can make a difference in some cases. Afterall, they don't want to spend too much time and effort training new grads. In my area, some employers do prefer certain nursing programs over others because there's less transitional training involved.

    Last edit by Sheri257 on Mar 30, '04
  8. by   hobbes
    Quote from lizz
    I wouldn't necessarily agree with that conclusion. Of course, it depends upon the employer, but I've talked to some of them and clinical hours, as well as the structure of the program, can make a difference in some cases. Afterall, they don't want to spend too much time and effort training new grads. In my area, some employers do prefer certain nursing programs over others because there's less transitional training involved.

    Just to clarity: Are you saying that you've talked with employers that will make a hire/no-hire decision based on # of clinical hours? If not, what is the "difference" you are refering to? Starting salary? I would guess then that those employers would prefer ADN grads since they typically have more clinical hours than BSN grads. I guess all things being equal, I could see this being a factor, but with the current shortage of nurses I would think what's more important is that you've graduated from an accredited program and passed the NCLEX. But...I could be wrong. This may be a regional thing.
  9. by   Sheri257
    Quote from hobbes
    Just to clarity: Are you saying that you've talked with employers that will make a hire/no-hire decision based on # of clinical hours? If not, what is the "difference" you are refering to? Starting salary? I would guess then that those employers would prefer ADN grads since they typically have more clinical hours than BSN grads. I guess all things being equal, I could see this being a factor, but with the current shortage of nurses I would think what's more important is that you've graduated from an accredited program and passed the NCLEX. But...I could be wrong. This may be a regional thing.
    I attended a nursing jobs fair where I was told by some hospital reps that they did prefer more clinical hours because the training was easier and less costly for them. However, as you pointed out, with the shortage they may not always have a choice. But given a choice, that's what they prefer. I was told this by some although certainly not all hospitals in my area. I didn't have time to talk to all of them, but I did hear this from some of the hospitals that I was most interested in working for. I live in an area where there are five nursing schools and many nursing jobs within a 60 mile radius, so I'm not sure if this is just a regional situation, although perhaps it could be. I didn't ask about salary at that point because I was more focused on how to structure my education. I hope this answers your questions.

    :spin:
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Mar 30, '04
  10. by   Nemrak
    Quote from lizz
    Interesting that you mention this. I looked at a five semester BSN versus the ADN program in my area, but decided to go with the ADN, mostly for similar reasons that you mentioned. While this is an established BSN program and they require a higher GPA, their NCLEX pass rate is very low compared with other programs in the area. That made me really nervous. You have to wonder what's going on in a program where higher GPA students are failing the NCLEX in greater numbers. I also was worried about the program's reputation for not giving students enough clinical training.

    Anyway, I found your comments interesting since they reflected a lot of my own concerns in a somewhat similar situation. I simply wasn't confident that I would be fully prepared, even though I could get my BSN much quicker. Of course, that means it will take longer, but I'll go the ADN-BSN route eventually.

    :spin:
    I am in a BSN program (non "fast-track" program) after I decided to work and have a family for ten years. Needless to say, I was very unprepared for what was in store for me. I had already graduated from a junior college in pre-nursing, so it's not like I hadn't been in college, but the BSN program is a virtual hell! The assessments and physicals that you have to document at our school is surreal. I don't remember signing up for medical school and quite honestly that's what it is.

    Let's just say this....if I had it to do over again, I would just get my ADN. Here, in AL, there is absolutely no difference in pay, in recognition or in respect.

    Also, I work full time as a Nurse Tech at the local hospital here and I'm making A's & B's in school, and, I have a husband and two children. Therefore, I think you should try to work in a clinical setting just for the osmosis process! All of the nurses I work with are so wonderful and teach me more than I've ever learned in class. They also tell me not to worry so much your real experience will begin when you start working. Anyway, I feel like you can always ask someone if you are unsure about something and my peers are terrific about helping me understand. I love the nurses I work with.

    Take care,

    Nem
  11. by   onyok
    Quote from RD2bRN
    F0r those who are either going through the program or have already graduated:

    1) Did you feel prepared to work as an RN after graduating?
    2) Would you do an accelerated BSN again if you were to do it over again?
    3) Will it be possible to work at least one day during the weekends?
    4) How many days of clinicals do you have?
    5) Did you have any time for social life?

    Please share any other experiences. Thank you.
    I am still in an accelerated BSN program & graduating on May2008. I have the same concerns. The instructors do their best to cover the material but there is not just enough time. A lot of us do extra work at home to educate ourselves. In this program, students really need that drive and initiative to learn and not just pass and complete requirements. It is a team effort between students and instructor. I am just hoping & praying that I would have adequate training & education when I finally practice as a novice RN.

    Our clinical is 3 days/week, 7-3.
    It's best not to work,you can allot that time to review more topics--- for your sake. Yes, there is time for social life.

    Any ABSN grads out there that are already working? Any tips??
  12. by   Quickbeam
    1) Did you feel prepared to work as an RN after graduating?
    2) Would you do an accelerated BSN again if you were to do it over again?
    3) Will it be possible to work at least one day during the weekends?
    4) How many days of clinicals do you have?
    5) Did you have any time for social life?
    1. I felt well prepared to work as an RN after my accelerated BSN program. I've been out for 21 years. My program was one of the first in the nation and has now been around for 30 years!

    2. I'd do the program I went to again (Creighton). They took excellent care of me and made sure I had the best possible clinical experiences. It was very hard work but I was self supporting and there was no way I could go more than 1 year without working.

    3. I'd strongly advise not working during an accelerated program. At least at my school, everyone who tried to work and do the program either dropped out or quit the job.

    4. During some of my program, I had clinicals 5 days a week. The beginning 6 weeks was more classroom intensive.

    5. During my 12 month program, I got married and we traveled to Wyoming on a break. Otherwise, my social life consisted of small gatherings with fellow students. We were all far from home.

    I have to emphasize what was told to me....accelerated programs are not for the faint of heart....they are "no stumbles" environments. There really is no time to make up for a loss of participation. People who had small children and sketchy day care really struggled. The 2 women in my class who got pregnant dropped out.

    My class was hyper competitive grade-wise. Much more so than the traditional students. We had 4.0 people not make the honor society (admission is much easier now....rule changes).

    Bets wishes to the OP and all who take this route. It can be very rewarding.
  13. by   MB37
    This thread is from 2004, but is probably still relevant to anyone considering an ABSN so I'll answer anyways. First of all, I suggest thorough research before you even apply anywhere, especially if you are willing/able to move for school. I wouldn't attend my current program again if I had a choice, but I would move back to my previous program in an instant (my first school flooded in Katrina, then my husband got transferred for work). The problem I have with my current program: I signed up for an accelerated program, and didn't get one. After we completed summer semester, supposedly our first of four - and many students had turned down acceptances to other schools - we get an e-mail saying that the faculty has decided that we will divide the last semester in half - take 7 credits next summer and 8 next fall. There is a lot of restructuring going on in our program, and we get to be the ones to suffer. Now we attend for the same 5 semesters that the regular students do, but they don't have class next summer, and our spring semester is really intense. Too late to do anything about it now though, I've already gone through the arduous process of establishing residency in this state.

    To answer the OP's questions:
    1) While I haven't begun to practice as an RN, I know that my school has the best reputation in my area as well as the highest NCLEX pass rate (only one person didn't pass on his/her first try out of the last graduating class). Since we have exactly the same curriculum as the regular students, there should be no stigma attached to being "accelerated."

    2) Yes, and probably even at this school, since I will still graduate more quickly than I would have at any other program in my area - including ADN. If I had a choice however, I would get the curriculum in WRITING and confirm it with someone else in administration/advising - I wouldn't have wanted to pack up and move here just for the program only to have it change on me.

    3) I work most Fridays and Saturday days at a bar, and it hasn't been a problem yet. I am planning on quitting soon, but I might try to find something I can do PRN at a hospital instead.

    4) We don't do clinicals our first semester. This semester we have them once a week, next semester twice, and summer was supposed to be 3 days. Now that they've extended it, it's probably just 1-2 for the last two semesters.

    5) My husband and I go out and do something fun at least one night/week, often twice. Again, my program is only barely accelerated. However, if I can work two days and go out two nights, all while making As, you should be able to sacrifice only one of those things in a real accelerated program and still do OK. I wouldn't plan on working 40 hours, partying 5 nights a week, keeping up with all the reality shows, and still passing, but you don't have to give up everything.

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