10 Best LPN to BSN Programs in 2023

An LPN wanting to advance their career would benefit significantly from a BSN degree.

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10 Best LPN to BSN Programs in 2023

Opportunities are growing for healthcare workers, as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that at least 275,000 additional nurses will be needed by 2030.

For licensed practical nurses (LPNs) seeking to benefit from these opportunities, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) may be a good fit, as advanced education leads to more career options and higher compensation. To help decide, we've compiled information on prerequisites, requirements, salary expectations, and the 10 best programs available in 2023.

What Is a BSN?

A Traditional BSN is a four-year diploma, signifying coursework in general education topics, nursing classes, research, statistics, and leadership. When graduating from an accredited BSN program, students will be eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses).  

An LPN wanting to advance their career would benefit significantly from a BSN degree, as it would allow them to provide advanced patient care due to their additional training and being further equipped to make critical care decisions.

A BSN RN is responsible for all that of an LPN with the addition of:

  • Administer blood products, medication through central lines, and chemotherapy medications
  • Develop patient care plans
  • Educate new RNs as a preceptor
  • Execute physician verbal orders
  • Lead emergency response codes
  • Supervise LPNs and CNAs

What Is an LPN to BSN Program?

When attending college for a Traditional BSN, students must complete four years of schooling, covering general education and classes specializing in their field of study.

When entering as an LPN, some prerequisite math, science, and health classes have already been completed. Additionally, an LPN usually works as a bedside nurse and already has real-world clinical experience, with some colleges allowing LPNs to test out of specific courses and even give credit for work experience.

Often, programs require a particular amount of time working in the field to enter an LPN to BSN program. However, this is to say that LPN to BSN programs aren't as long as a Traditional BSN. 

LPN to BSN Program Prerequisites and Requirements

The admission requirements for entering an LPN to BSN program vary by college. However, the main prerequisite is to have a current LPN license in good standing.

The employment period as an LPN required for entry to a BSN program also varies by college. Each program requires specific prerequisite courses, as well.

Programs may require math, science, English, or social studies courses. If you have completed coursework in the past, you will need to gather all of your old college records to get credit.

Related: 10 Fastest Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Programs in 2023

Relevant Coursework & Career Paths

Previous college-level coursework from your LPN program or a different college degree may apply to your BSN program. These classes typically include chemistry, physical sciences such as Microbiology and anatomy and physiology, basic math and statistics, English language, and psychology or sociology.

Once you obtain a BSN degree, you can advance your career with specialty certifications. Depending on the certificate that interests you, there are various requirements, but most require an RN license to sit for the exam. 

Additionally, many career pathways are available to nurses who achieve a BSN. Public health positions, for example, frequently require a BSN to enter the field.

10 Best LPN to BSN Programs in 2023

The following schools have been selected based on allnurses' methodology of surveying our readers to understand what they value most while selecting schools with the addition of NCLEX pass rates, graduation rates, student-faculty ratio, price, mode, duration, and admission rates of hundreds of the most prominent nursing schools in the United States.

1. University of Arkansas

The University of Arkansas' LPN to BSN program focuses on the working nurse. The school offers it online, with no campus visits required. Students may complete practicums in their geographic location with local preceptors. Many courses are only eight weeks long.

  • Cost: $302 per credit
  • Method: Hybrid
  • Length: 24 months

2. Point Loma Nazarene University 

Point Loma Nazarene University's School of Nursing is in sunny San Diego, CA. They focus on high-quality clinical experiences. As a Christian university, they offer a faith-based curriculum and create servant leaders.

  • Cost: $20,000 per semester
  • Method: In-person
  • Length: 36 months

3. Saint Xavier University

Saint Xavier University in Chicago, Illinois, wants to guide you through becoming a BSN. From the beginning, you will have an academic success coach whose only job is to help you reach your fullest potential. As you graduate, an NCLEX coach will help you prepare for licensure.

  • Cost: $750 per credit
  • Method: In-person
  • Length: 12 months

4. Azusa Pacific University

In Azusa, California, APU is a nursing college of distinction. The college has three locations for attendance (Victorville, San Bernardino, or Monrovia), providing a significant amount of flexibility for an in-person program. 

  • Cost: $825 per credit
  • Method: In-person
  • Length: 12 months 

5. California State University East Bay

Cal State East Bay School of Nursing is celebrating its 50th anniversary, making it a well-established and proven program. This program gives priority admission to local community college transfer students and military personnel. If either designation applies to you, this could be the right fit.

  • Cost: $2,871 per semester
  • Method: In-person 
  • Length: 12-24 months

6. Indiana State University

Indiana State University's School of Nursing has educated nurses since 1963. Their LPN to BSN program has a hybrid/online format and can be full-time or part-time. This schedule provides a great amount of flexibility for the working LPN.

  • Cost: $4,726 per semester
  • Method: Hybrid 
  • Length: 120 semester hours

7. Excelsior College

Excelsior College has designed a program specifically for the working LPN. They will credit you up to 31 hours based on prior experience, saving you time and money to achieve a BSN. This program is also in a hybrid format, providing flexibility to work around your shifts.

  • Cost: $510 per credit
  • Method: Hybrid 
  • Length: 121 credit hours

8. Kent State

Kent State boasts one of the country's most extensive nursing programs, and they want to use it to turn you into a leader in nursing. They have created a program for working healthcare professionals seeking a BSN degree and provide a wide range of specialty clinical experiences to fill the gaps in your knowledge with real-world, hands-on experiences.

  • Cost: $12,471.44 annual
  • Method: Hybrid 
  • Length: 27-30 months

9. Hawai'I Pacific University

Hawai'I Pacific University, located in Honolulu, provides a unique backdrop to continue your education in person. In addition to the tropical location, HPU has many scholarship opportunities to aid your learning and unique partnerships with local organizations.

  • Cost: $15,720 per semester
  • Method: In-person 
  • Length: 120 credit hours

10. Georgia Southwestern State University

Georgia Southwestern offers in-state tuition to six different surrounding states—a unique opportunity for anyone living in the area around Georgia. This option can save you thousands on your journey to becoming a BSN.

  • Cost: $2,520 per semester
  • Method: In-person
  • Length: 120 credit hours

Salary Expectations of a BSN in 2023

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly rate for an LPN is $24.69. The average hourly rate reported for a BSN is $43.56, translating into a salary of $76,714 if working a standard 36-hour work week. Remember, these statistics include all levels of experience and all 50 states, but in general, LPNs can increase their income by obtaining a BSN degree.

Part of the pay difference is the ability to work in different healthcare settings. Many positions open to a nurse with a BSN are unavailable to an LPN. This flexibility provides significant growth in salary potential. 

FAQs and Additional Readings

Q: Is a BSN degree worth it?

A: BSN-prepared nurses earn an average of $10,000 to $20,000 more annually than LPNs. They are also far more likely to advance to leadership positions, raising their yearly income potential. To be eligible for advanced nursing degree programs, nurses must obtain a bachelor's degree first.

Q: How demanding is the coursework required to achieve a BSN?  

A: A nursing program is demanding, as are other bachelor's degrees. There are online LPN to BSN programs, in-person programs, and hybrid programs to help fit your education journey into your life. You can also complete coursework full-time or part-time. Luckily, as an LPN, you have already completed a lot of training and have working knowledge from the real world of patient care. This experience gives you an edge in BSN coursework over someone who has never stepped foot in a hospital. Overall, the reward of achieving your BSN makes the time and effort put into the program more than worth it.

Q: How does a BSN compare to an associate's degree?

A: A BSN degree is more comprehensive than an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN). BSN programs include additional coursework in general education topics like math, sciences, and social studies. They also have leadership, research, statistics, and community health courses. A BSN RN is ready for broader nursing careers and specialties.

Related: 10 Best RN to BSN Programs in 2023

Q: Who is the best person to contact for information on LPN to BSN programs?

A: The best person to contact for more details on an LPN to BSN program is an admissions counselor or academic advisor at the college you are interested in. They can discuss the pathways open to you, prerequisite requirements you must meet, financial aid opportunities or scholarship availability, and answer further questions regarding their program. You may want to talk with BSNs in your facility who have completed a program already.

Q: How expensive is an LPN to BSN program?

A: There is an LPN to BSN program for every budget. Above, you can find tuition information on our top ten programs. Most college websites have a tuition and fees page, or you can contact the admissions counselor. Consider applying for financial aid or scholarships to lessen the cost of your new degree. Your place of employment may offer a scholarship or tuition reimbursement program in exchange for an agreement to work a set amount of time.

Q: Are there websites where I can read more about the prospect of becoming a BSN-RN?

A: You can visit many websites to learn about the LPN to BSN process. Above are links to the recommended colleges and the NCLEX website, where you can find answers about testing.  

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