11 Best Online RN to BSN Programs in 2023

These are the 11 best online RN to BSN programs, along with information on career outlooks and salary expectations. Articles Programs

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The demand for highly skilled and educated registered nurses (RNs) is rising, with many seeing benefits in career outlook and compensation after furthering their education.

For RNs with an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), this could mean returning to school to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).

To help RNs decide if this furthering of education suits them, we've compiled an overview of the prerequisites and requirements for the best online RN to BSN programs in 2023, along with salary expectations and more.

What Is an RN to BSN?

Typically, an ADN takes two years to complete, while the Traditional BSN takes four. Both degrees allow students to sit for their NCLEX and practice once passing.

However, more than ever, healthcare facilities and hospitals prefer BSN-prepared nurses, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reporting increased employability for those with BSNs, with the addition of a survey from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing showing that 77% of employers strongly prefer nurses with a BSN, while 41% consider it a requirement. In response, many ADN-prepared nurses return to school to achieve a BSN through bridge programs known as RN to BSNs.

Schools usually offer these programs at convenient times for working nurses, or sometimes they are part-time or entirely online. These programs help students achieve a BSN degree in less time than starting a four-year program from scratch, enabling them to continue working while improving their career outlook and earning potential.

RN to BSN Prerequisites and Requirements

RN to BSN programs will have different prerequisites and admission requirements depending on which program nursing students choose. Each program will require previous coursework, and these prerequisites will vary. Below are some shared core courses and nursing courses students may need:

  • Communication
  • Mathematics
  • American history 
  • Social and behavioral science 
  • Microbiology with lab 
  • Anatomy and physiology with lab
  • Psychology 
  • Statistics
  • Nutrition 

Related: 10 Best RN to BSN Programs in 2023

Many programs will have a minimum GPA requirement that students must meet before admission, including the applicant having an RN license in good standing.

Some schools will require the student's ADN to be from an accredited institution or nursing program. It is always essential to verify what the specific program you are applying for requires and not make any assumptions.

Best Online RN 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, graduation rates, student-faculty ratio, price, mode, duration, and admission rates of hundreds of the most prominent nursing schools in the United States. 

1. Western Governors University 

Based in Millcreek, Utah. Western Governors University allows students to start the program on the first of every month, and students can move through the courses at their own pace, meaning completion times will vary. Student-to-faculty ratios are 42:1, and admission rates are 100% as long as students meet the application and education requirements. 

  • Cost: $3,998/6-month term 
  • Graduation rate: 89-97%

2. Arizona State University 

Arizona State University offers a self-paced online RN to BSN program. With low student-to-faculty ratios at 17:1 and an 88% admission rate, the program consists of 10 courses that are 7.5 weeks each.

  • Cost: $474/credit hour
  • Graduation rate: 66%

3. Capella University 

Capella University, located in Minneapolis, MN, offers students FlexPath, allowing them to move through the courses at their own pace without waiting. After finishing one class, you can move on to the next. Payments are for 12-week sessions, so the quicker you can complete the program, the less you pay. Student-to-faculty ratios are 49:1 with 100% admission rates. 

  • Cost: $6,590-$13,180
  • Graduation rate: 16%

4. Ohio State University

Ohio State University offers a 12-month full-time or 15-month part-time plan for completion of the online RN to BSN program. The program is self-paced, so you complete courses on your own time. Student-to-faculty ratios are low at 8:1. Admission rates sit at 68%. 

  • Cost: $457.88/credit hour
  • Graduation rate: 87%

5. Drexel University 

Philadelphia, PA, is home to Drexel University, where students can complete the online RN to BSN program in four to five terms. Admission rates are 77%, and student-to-faculty ratios are low at 9:1. The school encourages qualified RN to BSN students to sub-matriculate into the MSN program.

  • Cost: $14.148/quarter
  • Graduation rate: 69%

6. University of Central Florida 

University of Central Florida's RN to BSN program offers a hybrid format with primarily online courses and a few face-to-face courses. Admission rates are 45%, and student-to-faculty ratios are 30:1.

  • Cost: $212.28/credit hour for in-state students; $748.89/credit hour for out-of-state students 
  • Graduation rate: 72%

7. University of Cincinnati

The University of Cincinnati offers a part-time and full-time RN to BSN option. Students who choose the part-time option can complete the program in 12-15 months, and full-time students can complete the program in as little as nine months. Admission rates are 76%, and student-to-faculty ratios are 19:1.

  • Cost: $549/credit hour for in-state students; $564/credit hour for out-of-state students 
  • Graduation rate: 66%

8. University of Florida 

The University of Florida offers a part-time, online RN to BSN program with fall and Spring start times. Students can expect 19:1 student-to-faculty ratios and admission rates at 76%.

  • Cost: $129.18/credit hour for in-state students; $552.62/credit hour for out-of-state students 
  • Graduation rate: 66%

9. American Sentinel University 

American Sentinel, located in Waterbury, CT, offers monthly start dates and two options for course completion: traditional term-based with eight-week classes or self-paced during the 16-week semester. Admission rates are 100%, and student-to-faculty ratios are 9:1. 

  • Cost: $599/credit hour
  • Graduation rate: 69%

10. Chamberlain University

Chamberlain University offers part-time and full-time options for the RN to BSN program. Students can complete the program in as little as one year. Admission rates are 100% if students meet all requirements, and student-to-faculty ratios are 20:1.

  • Cost: $590/credit hour
  • Graduation rate: 74%

11. Herzing University 

Herzing University calls Milwaukee, WI home and is where RN to BSN students can complete the program in as few as 12 months. Students can also use the dual credit option and apply BSN credits towards an MSN degree. Admission rates are 92%, and student-to-faculty ratios are low at 12:1. 

  • Cost: $395/credit hour
  • Graduation rate: 65%

Salary Expectations of Registered Nurses in 2023

A driving factor for current RNs to pursue an RN to BSN program is the salary increase they may expect after completing the program. With a BSN, students may see an increase in salary of up to $10,000 annually. Salaries vary throughout the country based on cost of living, demand, and more. RNs with a BSN degree can earn a median salary of $77,600, according to the BLS

The job outlook for RNs is positive, with a growth of 6% expected from 2021 to 2031. Pursuing a BSN will not only boost one's salary, but it will also make them a more desired candidate over an ADN or diploma-prepared candidate as more hospitals and healthcare facilities move towards hiring baccalaureate-prepared nurses. 

FAQ and Additional Readings

Q: What is the difference between an RN and a BSN?

A: The main difference between an RN and a BSN is that a BSN is an educational degree, and an RN is a licensure or job title. A baccalaureate-prepared nurse can expect more career opportunities and growth than a nurse who holds an RN or ADN. BSN-prepared nurses can pursue jobs in nursing management, nursing leadership, nursing research, community health nursing, and more. 

Related: 13 Fastest RN to BSN Programs in 2023

Q: Do healthcare systems and hospitals require applicants to have a BSN?

A: Depending on where you apply, some healthcare systems and hospitals require nurses to hold a BSN. According to Franklin University, 49% of employers require nurses to have a BSN, while 83% strongly prefer nurses to hold a BSN. 

Q: Is there an additional NCLEX exam that students take after completing a BSN program if they are already licensed RNs? 

A: No, once you have successfully passed the NCLEX exam, you do not need to retake it after completing the BSN program as long as your license is in good standing with no limitations or restrictions.

AD DISCLOSURE: This page may contain affiliate links. These links are designed for allnurses to generate revenue at no cost to you. The websites you visit are operated by third parties and have no influence in our recommendations, which are grounded in research.

Editorial Team / Admin
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