Online Nursing Degrees

online nursing schoos

The demand for professional nurses in the U.S. has never been greater than now. There are currently over 2 million Registered Nurses in the country today and that number is expected to grow by about 30 percent in the next five years. What this implies is if you are thinking of a career in healthcare and nursing, you are assured of employment opportunities as well as ample salary benefits.

The path to a successful nursing career is embedded in the right education choices. All states require an approved and accredited nursing degree or diploma and most colleges and schools tailor their programs to prepare their students for the National Licensing Exam. This examination will allow you to practice in single or multiple states and give you the flexibility and opportunity for career growth.

There are three main options to choose from when opting for an education in nursing.

  • Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN)
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
  • Master’s Degree in Nursing

Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN)

The ADN program prepares graduates to sit for the National Council of Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX). Those that pass the NCLEX are then eligible to apply for licensure to practice as a registered nurse in any of the 50 states or U.S. territories. Many colleges also offer this course as an accelerated degree so that you can move on to the next level of qualification sooner.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing (BSN)

To qualify for a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing, students have to have a valid Registered Nurse license. Bachelor degrees aim to train RNs in the growing field of healthcare and expanding their education. As a graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing, you will be equipped to apply for job positions in hospitals, community health care centers, private practices and patient care facilities.

Master of Science Degree in Nursing

If you wish to move on the more challenging and demanding careers in the healthcare field, a Masters degree in Nursing will help. Most Master’s degrees are designed to hone skills and train nurses in specialized fields and advanced theory. Management, administration and leadership positions are possible after graduating with a Masters. As technology develops and colleges face capacity shortages with reference to the demand for nursing programs, many schools and institutions offer all their nursing degree programs online as well as on-campus.

There are several advantages of online nursing programs:

  • You can study as per your own schedule anytime and anywhere.
  • The cost of online nursing degree programs is generally less expensive than on-campus programs.
  • Many online degrees are also available with accelerated options that allow you to graduate much ahead of schedule.
  • It doesn’t matter where you are located, with an online program you have access to the best education facilities and faculty anywhere in the country.
  • Online degree programs offer discussion groups, chat forums, video lectures and even one on one tutorial that are equivalent to the interaction and experience of a traditional degree program.

If you are opting for an online nursing program, you have to make sure that the college you choose is accredited. All nursing programs, whether Associate, Bachelor or Masters degrees, have to be approved by the state for which they operate otherwise you degree will count for nothing in the long run, so take care and investigate the course and the institution thoroughly.

Once you have completed your education, you can look forward to a host of career opportunities. If you have a Bachelor’s degree or higher, the possibilities of growth and advancement are greater as well. You could then move into research, counseling, teaching, consulting or even specialization.

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