Why Should Nurses Consider an Online RN to BSN Program?

An Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) both prepare students to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) so they can practice as registered nurses. Nurses with an ADN may want to consider an online RN to BSN program if they are ready to bolster their practice and gain access to roles with increased responsibility and compensation — all while keeping their current job.

Why Should ADN Nurses Earn a BSN?

Many reasons exist for ADN-prepared nurses to earn a BSN. Most importantly, research shows that BSN-prepared nurses have better patient outcomes.

Educational levels of hospital nurses and surgical patient mortality and Baccalaureate education in nursing and patient outcomes are just two of the studies listed on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Fact Sheet concerning the impact of education on nursing practice. Evidence from the studies shows a link between nurses prepared with a BSN and a lower incidence of pressure ulcers, post-operative deep vein thrombosis, failure to rescue, hospital infections and post-surgical mortality in patients.

Other motivations for completing a BSN program include:

  • There Is a Preference for Nurses With a BSN: Since the Institute of Medicine (IOM), renamed the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) in 2015, released its report The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health, healthcare employers have heeded the recommendation that calls for 80% of the nursing workforce to have a BSN by 2020. It is already becoming more difficult for ADN-prepared nurses to get hired in some areas.
  • Hospitals Need BSN-Prepared Nurses to Acquire Magnet Status: To receive Magnet recognition from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), all of the nurse managers and nurse leaders working at the hospital applying for the designation must hold at least a BSN.
  • A BSN May Be Required to Practice in the Future: The AACN recognizes the BSN as the minimum preparation requirement for nurses entering the nursing practice. With support from the AACN and NAM, a baccalaureate degree may become the mandatory level of preparation for new nurses.

Why Should Nurses Choose an Online RN to BSN Program?

An accredited online RN to BSN program allows nurses to complete their degree at their own pace. This flexibility lets nurses continue to work and fulfill personal obligations.

Online RN to BSN programs are convenient because students do not have to travel or adhere to a strict schedule. Many schools offer multiple start dates, and courses are usually taught by the same experienced faulty who teach on campus. And, online programs are often more affordable because you may be able to complete them in a shorter period of time. You also save money on commuting, and online students usually save money on fees that go to campus-related expenses.

BSN-prepared nurses have more job opportunities because a lot of nursing positions are only open to applicants with a baccalaureate degree. Additional advantages for nurses with a BSN include: higher salaries, job promotions and more autonomy in the workplace. By completing an online RN to BSN program, ADN nurses are prepared to move ahead in their nursing careers.

Learn more about Youngstown State University’s online RN to BSN program.


Nurse Journal: 10 Reasons Why RN’s Should Pursue Their BSN Degree

EveryNurse: Online Nursing Program

Nurse Journal: Top 9 Advantages of a BSN Degree

American Association of Colleges of Nursing: The Impact of Education on Nursing Practice

Lippincott Solutions: Comparing ADN and BSN Degrees

Nursing.org: Online RN to BSN Programs

JAMA: Education Levels of Hospital Nurses and Surgical Patient Mortality

NCBI: Baccalaureate Education in Nursing and Patient Outcomes

American Nurses Credentialing Center: Eligibility Requirements

American Association of Colleges of Nursing: The Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing as Minimal Preparation for Professional Practice

The National Academy of Medicine: The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health

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