• Capella University School of Nursing and Health Sciences

    Capella University was founded in 1993 by Stephen Shank and Dr. Harold Abel. To this day, the university continues to carry out their vision as it makes available high-quality nursing education programs.

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    • Accreditations CCNE Accredited
    • Location Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • Programs BSN, DNP, MSN, RN-to-MSN, RN-to-BSN, MSN-to-DNP, MSN to PhD, PhD, Master's, Post-grad Certificate, Other
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    How can Capella University reduce the time and cost it takes for me to graduate with a degree?

    Capella University transfers credits from your previous degree (75% of a BSN degree).  You can also shorten the time by applying for credits like CNML, CPHIMS, or ANCC RN-BC Informatics certification.

    Students coming to Capella are able to transfer credits into their program or access Capella's prior learning assessment to earn credit for demonstrating relevant and college-level knowledge gained through:

    • Formal and informal work training - If you have work experience, you can use it toward your degree
    • Continuing education programs - If you are already a nurse, you can appy CEUs toward your degree
    • Self-instruction
    • Professional certifications, like the Certified Nurse Manager and Leader (CNML) and Registered Nurse – Board Certified (RN-BC)
    • Other learning experiences



    Bachelor of Science in Nursing

    RN to BSN Degree Completion

    Capella’s RN to BSN degree is designed to be flexible for the current working ADN nurse or diploma nurse. You can finish your BSN in as little as 18 months. This program is offered 100% online, so you can fit it into your life.

    FlexPath: RN to BSN Option

    Capella's RN-to-BSN Flexpath option offers nurses  greater freedom, more control, and the potential to save time and money.


    Master of Science in Nursing (online)

     3 pathways to MSN degree

    • MSN program
    • RN-to-BSN/MSN combination option
    • RN-to-MSN program

    RN to BSN/MSN Combined Option

    If you know where you want to be in the end with an advanced degree, why take longer to get there by obtaining a BSN first? If you are an RN who holds an associate’s degree or nursing diploma, you can fast track your progress and earn both your BSN and MSN when you work on them together, saving you time and money. Capella offers combined option degree programs through shared master’s-level courses applied to the requirements in both degrees. You will be awarded both degrees in the end.

    RN to MSN

    If you are trying to save time and money, skip the BSN and reach your MSN in 2.5 years.

    RN to MSN Programs

    • Care Coordination
    • Diabetes Nursing
    • Nursing Education
    • Nursing Informatics
    • Nursing Leadership and Administration
    • RN-to-MSN Care Coordination
    • RN-to-MSN Diabetes Nursing
    • RN-to-MSN Nursing Education
    • RN-to-MSN Nursing Informatics
    • RN-to-MSN Nursing Leadership and Administration

    Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

    Capella offers a DNP program that ensures the highest quality learning experience. Capella offers an online DNP program that follows the guidelines of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) for doctoral education practice.

    The DNP program can be completed in 2.25 years and you will be prepared to manage complex health care challenges in a program that focuses on the practical applications of nursing rather than research and theory.

    DNP Pathways

    1. BSN TO DNP
    2. Post-MSN

    Post-Master's in Another Field (DNP Prep Program)

    This is a three-course program intended for registered nurses with non-nursing master’s degrees. This pathway focuses on the essential skills and knowledge required to embark on a Doctor of Nursing Practice program.

    Side note: The DNP is not a clinical degree program and is not designed to prepare Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) for roles as Nurse Practitioners (NP), Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS), Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM), or Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA).

    Nursing Certificate 

    In 9 months, nurses can become certified in their field of expertise. With a certification, you can show your knowledge in your field.

    • Care Coordination
    • Diabetes Nursing
    • Nursing Informatics
    • Nursing Leadership
    • Nursing Education

    Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing Education

    Capella's Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Education program is aligned with the guidelines of the National League for Nursing (NLN) Nursing Education Competencies and is designed to meet the educational requirements for the Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) credential offered by the NLN.


    The BSN, MSN, and DNP degree programs at Capella University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

    Capella University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    Rankings and Awards

    BestColleges.org listed Capella University in their Best Online Colleges and Universities of 2018.

    TheBestSchools.org listed Capella University in their Most Popular Online Colleges (2018).

    Awarded in 2000, Capella University became the first online academic institution to become a charter participant of the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP). AQIP participants commit to a program of continuous quality improvement (CQI) similar to initiatives practiced in other industries.

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