Capella University vs. WGU for RN-BSN

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    I'm researching online RN-BSN programs and basically have it narrowed down to two: Capella and Western Governors. I've gotten a lot of helpful information about WGU from that particular thread, but I haven't seen as much about Capella. I've spoken to an advisor and we did an unofficial transcript review; with the discounts offered through their ANA partnership, I'm looking at $15,711. (Yes, they were that specific.) So the price is right.

    I guess my biggest question is, does Capella have a good reputation in the higher education world of nursing? I don't want to end up in the same category as University of Phoenix, which I understand is, shall we say, considered subpar when it comes to nursing education. At this point I don't have any plans to continue on to a MSN or DNP, but I want to keep my options open. I would hate to put in the work for a BSN and then down the road, have somebody say that it doesn't carry much weight because of the school I chose. Maybe I'm reading too much into this - is it even that important for a BSN? As long as the program itself is CCNE accredited, that should be enough, right?

    Any thoughts are greatly appreciated!
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  4. 7 Comments so far...

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    I'm a WGU grad (two times) and completed my BSN and MSN for under $10k. (Less with scholarships and tuition reimbursement, but let's say you get none of those.) The quality of the education was first rate- in fact, my MSN research capstone is being published later this year in a peer reviewed journal, and I am presenting it at national conferences. Here are the reasons I chose WGU:

    WGU is completely asynchronous (NO mandatory web times/ group projects) and so school is truly at YOUR time frame. (I work nights)
    WGU includes 90% of books as ebooks (included in the tuition price)
    WGU allows you to accelerate if you choose (add additional courses in your term WITHOUT paying extra tuition $$)
    WGU starts a new term each and every month, terms last six months, so you can start whenever YOU are ready
    WGU is regionally accredited, as well as having all the pertinent nursing accreditations
    WGU has an outstanding library / writing mentors/ student assistance program at your disposal
    WGU assigns you a personal mentor to guide, encourage and inform you through every step of the program

    I could not be happier with my WGU education. And while online education is certainly not for everyone, it worked for me- a 58 year old, technologically-naive grandmother.

    WGU Indiana Commencement 2012 - Mary Carney, Student Speaker - YouTube << Here's my graduation speech!
    ConcreteRose24 likes this.
  6. 1
    Thanks for the detailed information, and congratulations to you! I am also considering WGU, and have read a lot of good things about it, but you have now given me a student's perspective on it.
    meanmaryjean likes this.
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    Thanks for the info, meanmaryjane. One question I haven't asked my advisor yet - suppose I need some time off in between the six month sessions? Do you know if I can just pop back in at any time? I'm also wondering what your experience was with the practicum for the BSN. What I've heard so far doesn't seem like it would be too complicated but I'd like to hear your thoughts.
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    I love WGU! Just about to graduate with my BSN (one class to go), and it's going to cost me about $3000 and I did it in less than one term. I would not consider going anywhere else!

    As for the practicum, it was not difficult and consisted of interviewing local community people/leaders, attending community meetings, etc. Then you write a paper. You can ask for a term break between terms - I think it's a form you fill out.

    Oh, and as Mary said above, it's on your own time, and all my books for the BSN were included. If you have to take a lab science, even the lab kits are included. I take my tests at a proctor site (but you can take at home with a webcam) and they even reimburse my proctor fees.
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    I did a two month term break- saved my sanity during the MSN program! You can be off as long as three, after that, you must re-enroll. You simply notify your mentor, fill out a form and go from there. Caveat: I did not use any financial aid- so I am not sure if that is impacted by a term break. You will hear WGU students talk about longer term breaks- BUT they are teachers' college student who need their term to line up with student teaching- which only happens twice a year. For all other students, term break can only be one, two or three months.
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    Thanks for the input! I have heard so many good things about WGU and I was hoping some Capella students would weigh in, but I have a feeling WGU is going to win my vote anyway.
  11. 0
    Great recommendation! I have been considering uta or wgu. Spoke to recruiter after hearing your input and watching your graduation video. I am all fired up to get my bsn and msn before I am 63. Thanks for sharing your story.


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