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RNikkiF RNikkiF (Member)

Are online RN to BSN/MSN Programs Legitimate/Respected? Which to choose???

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I am SERIOUSLY considering going back to school for RN to BSN or MSN. I have NO idea how to go about choosing a program though. Obviously, it will be based in part on which specialty I want (still mulling that one over). But my big concerns are 1) Are online programs legitimate and respected by hiring nurse managers 2) Which ones are the best??? How does one even go about deciding which to choose??

I'm looking for opinions on "well-known" programs as well such as Kaplan, Chamberlain, UWM's BSN@Home, Colorado Technical University, University of Phoenix, etc.... I'm not opposed to some more "obscure" options either, but I need to find a way to verify quality/ranking, etc. (More concerned about quality and accreditation than ranking, but ranking doesn't hurt either).

I'm also looking for opinions regarding programs that have NO clinical requirement. I don't really know if I trust the sound of that, but I'm already working full time and have a family....

I don't need an "Ivy League" education but I want a high quality program that is respected and known for being good. I've done research all over the internet and most of what I come up with are the websites that schools pay for advertisements on. I don't trust ANY of those sites at all. Are there sites out there that don't allow schools to pay for advertising? Even the U.S. News Best Colleges Lists allow paid advertisements now! Disappointing!!

I have NO idea how I will be able to handle working three 12s a week and having two kids and a husband while attending a rigorous program, but I think it is time that I do it.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated! Classes are starting in a couple of weeks here, so I doubt I'll make it in time for the upcoming semester, but maybe the one after that.

Expedient replies are appreciated!

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Hi. Im hope someone gives a good response to this post. I am considering and wondering the same things. And i also have the same work and family structure as yourself. Good luck to you!

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My sister completed an RN-to-MSN program at the University of Phoenix. I don't believe that she had any clinicals. I believe that she had to attend some physical classes as well, as opposed to it being competely online. It's very pricey.

We had a presentation not long ago from Grand Canyon University, which was offering online courses for nursing (BSN/MSN). I can't vouch for the quality of education. It was also extremely expensive (which is probably true of most such programs).

Edited by Orca

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Have you researched Western Governors University? It is not available in every state, but those that do offer it give you the opportunity to earn RN-BSN with no clinical component so long as you are actively employed as an RN. The program is online and does not have to take very long and the cost is very reasonable. The downside is that if you complete the program, you earn a 3.00 regardless of how well you did. This might matter if you plan on pursuing further education such as MSN.

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Look into WGUs RN-BSN program you might like it...you can go at your own pace, I've read on various nursing boards about people who have finished it in 8 months-a year (they werent working or cut their hours down, so they could study more & get through the program faster).

Then if you decide to go for your MSN later down the line, WGU offers that as well. UOP also has a masters program.

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Texas Tech university is working for me. Completely online, and cheap. 2 semesters/ 6 months to complete. It costs

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A lot of well-respected, brick and mortal universities have online programs now. Check those out. If your state university system has such a program, it would probably be a lot cheaper than those schools that exist only in online form. You get the benefits of the online format -- but also the benefits of the traditional brick and mortar school.

Also, be wary of the "for-profits." You have to remember that their primary motive is to make money and earn a profit for their shareholders -- whether they help you or society or not. The non-profit schools (private or public) and the state supported schools exist to serve society. Going to a school in your own geographic region that also has a brick and mortar program also makes it easier to actually meet with a member of your faculty face-to-face in the event that you have some difficulties or if you just want a little extra attention. It's impossible to do that with most of the big online school because their faculty is often spread out all over the country, may only teach part time, etc.

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Texas Tech university is working for me. Completely online, and cheap. 2 semesters/ 6 months to complete. It costs

Does this program require you to be a working RN while in school?

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Also, be wary of the "for-profits." You have to remember that their primary motive is to make money and earn a profit for their shareholders -- whether they help you or society or not. The non-profit schools (private or public) and the state supported schools exist to serve society.

How can I find out which schools are "for profit" and which are "non profit"? It would get me a start to narrow down my list of RN to BSN online programs []American Association of Colleges of Nursing | Page Not Found since my search is getting very difficult.

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I went to Ohio University but I live in Ohio. There was a huge push for it in both states that I have worked in. The main reason is the benefit and all managers have mentioned that they push people to go for it. So yes, online RN to BSN programs can be respected. Generally, it more seems to be experience with the BSN a plus. The only time I was asked for my diploma was yesterday and they didn't care which nursing diploma they had a copy of.

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