Hello! I am in my last year of my BSN program, and I think I have finally decided on continuing on for my FNP. I want to get it done ASAP, however, I do believe that having a year of nursing experience before I go on (and I also plan on trying to work full time for at least the first year of the program) is important. I was just wondering what your opinion is on online FNP programs? There are a ton of them out there, and I feel like this would be my best option. When I am finished with school, I will be relocating back to my hometown, which is about an hour away from the nearest FNP program (the next closest being an hour and 45 minutes away). Would it be best for me to take classes online, or to drive an hour to actually attend lecture? My mom is a nurse and doesn't really like the whole online idea, however she has had several of her coworkers go through online FNP programs and they have been very successful. Any thoughts or suggestions?
Aug 22, '12
I personally would only attend a college in class or the majority of it in class. The physicians group around me does not like the idea of online schools and feels their quality of education is inferior. When trying to get into a physicans group, I believe that a physical classroom education will give more credibility. There are already enough doctors who prefer PA's over NP's...online schooling doesnt need to give them more doubt in you
To me this is also like having your MBA from University of Phoenix. Though it is an accredited school, in the business world it is frowned upon.
Nov 15, '12
It really all depends on how you learn best. Do you learn best by being surrounded and physically in a teaching environment, or do you work well doing the work on your own time?
Nov 15, '12
I think online is becoming the norm for many masters programs in nursing. I will be attending UABs NNP program and it is all online except for clinicals, of course. This allows me to work full-time. I don't think the education is worse because it is online. I would just be sure you are getting your online degree from a legit university. I've read about some schools on allnurses that fo not sound legit amd I would never get a degree from. But there are good online schools. UAB has one of the top FNP programs in the country, and its program is all online.
Nov 20, '12
My two cents..
I would be very hesitant to attend a program (class or online) that required you to find your own preceptorships.
If you plan on working in a major academic area, I would talk to providers in the settings you want to work, as they may be partial to brick and mortar schools in the area.
Nov 23, '12
I would be selective about what online programs you consider. I am currently enrolled in a FNP program with a major university, and I would recommend you do the same. It provides you with a recognizable "brand" when you are seeking employment, and it strengthens your academic resume for future study (if you desire). Also, choose an online program that still meets in virtual classrooms. I find others (including physicians) give this type of program more respect when they know you are still meeting with a professor in a classroom setting on a regular basis, even if it's online.
Online education is becoming the norm in many fields, not just nursing. And faculty have told me that the online programs are actually more intensive because they feel they have to "prove" their program is challenging and comparable to traditional programs.
Good idea on getting some experience first. The brand new nurses in my FNP program are struggling, and several have dropped out. That said, I know several new nurses who are doing very well. It all depends on their abilities and maturity.
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