Best Online RN-to-BSN

Find top-ranked online RN to BSN degree programs for RN’s who want to qualify for roles as charge nurses, addiction nurses, and clinical nurse educators.

Best Online RN-to-BSN

Frequently Asked Questions About RN-to-BSN Degrees

Why go from RN to BSN?

Registered nurses who want to pursue leadership roles while also increasing their earning potential may want to enroll in an RN-to-BSN, or Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing, program.

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How long does it take to go from RN to BSN?

These unique programs typically allow students to transfer up to 60 credits, which can help expedite the process of earning a bachelor’s degree from four years to just two years.

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What topics do courses cover?

Courses, which are available both online and on campus, explore topics like human anatomy, leadership in nursing, and healthcare policy.

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What are RN to BSN students doing after graduation?

Depending on experience, graduates typically qualify for roles as charge nurses, addiction nurses, and clinical nurse educators. However, students should note that additional certifications and licensure may be required for certain career paths. The RN-to-BSN program also helps prepare students for graduate degrees.

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Learn more about how to major in nursing.

Best Online RN-BSN Degree Programs

How do we determine the best online RN-BSN degree programs?

Pursing your degree online doesn’t mean you need to settle for a inferior school. Today, most universities and colleges offer online degrees, and many respected schools are seeing significant growth in their numbers of online students.

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. This is why influence — i.e., the academic impact of faculty and alumni associated with a school — gets at the heart of what is truly best in education. The combined influence score of a college or university’s top academic influencers is the best indicator of academic excellence. For our online degree rankings, we focus on the academic influence of faculty and alumni in the specific disciplines we’re ranking.

If you are serious about finding the best online colleges, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching, and whether their graduates themselves are advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence. Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Influence, as measured by our InfluenceRanking engine, provides a ranking that is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.

Find out more about our methodology here.

Best Online RN-BSN Degree Programs

  1. #1

    Virginia Commonwealth University

    #405 institution's historical influence
    #994 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    66%

    Student body

    26K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1165/24

    Richmond, VA

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 32
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  2. #2

    University of Rochester

    #82 institution's historical influence
    #61 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $56K

    Acceptance

    35%

    Graduation

    86%

    Student body

    11K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1405/32

    Rochester, NY

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 128
    • Completion time: 4.5-5.5 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  3. #3

    University of Cincinnati

    #152 institution's historical influence
    #1179 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    76%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    33K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1235/26

    Cincinnati, OH

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN-BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: 9 months, or two semesters
    • Format: Hybrid
    REQUEST INFO
  4. #4

    Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

    #1766 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Student body

    5K

    Lubbock, TX

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  5. #5

    University of South Carolina

    #286 institution's historical influence
    #1388 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    78%

    Student body

    32K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1275/28

    Columbia, SC

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  6. #6

    University of Missouri

    #98 institution's historical influence
    #1169 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    82%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    25K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1230/26

    Columbia, MO

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  7. #7

    University of Massachusetts Amherst

    #141 institution's historical influence
    #953 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $16K

    Acceptance

    65%

    Graduation

    83%

    Student body

    28K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1290/29

    Amherst, MA

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 1 year
    • Format: Online
  8. #8

    Mercer University

    #638 institution's historical influence
    #1052 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $26K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1255/27

    Macon, GA

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 32
    • Completion time: 18-24 months
    • Format: Hybrid
    REQUEST INFO
  9. #9

    East Carolina University

    #598 institution's historical influence
    #1186 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    88%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    25K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/22

    Greenville, NC

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 125-133
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  10. #10

    University of Arkansas

    #306 institution's historical influence
    #1356 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    25K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1210/26

    Fayetteville, AR

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
  11. #11

    Texas A&M University

    #134 institution's historical influence
    #91 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    63%

    Graduation

    83%

    Student body

    58K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1275/28

    College Station, TX

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 32
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  12. #12

    Excelsior College

    #2271 institution's historical influence

    Student body

    6K

    Albany, NY

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 121
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  13. #13

    William Carey University

    #2931 institution's historical influence
    #211 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    55%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1065/24

    Hattiesburg, MS

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 1 year
    • Format: Online
  14. #14

    Adelphi University

    #642 institution's historical influence
    #610 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $40K

    Acceptance

    75%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    8K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/24

    Garden City, NY

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  15. #15

    California State University, Dominguez Hills

    #1889 institution's historical influence
    #542 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    13K

    Carson, CA

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    Online Degrees

    RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 50-53
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  16. #16

    Marshall University

    #851 institution's historical influence
    #1031 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    89%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    10K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1045/22

    Huntington, WV

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  17. #17

    Oakland University

    #859 institution's historical influence
    #587 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    16K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1125/23

    Rochester Hills, MI

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing, RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 1 year
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  18. #18

    Mississippi University for Women

    #1927 institution's historical influence
    #445 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    99%

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/21

    Columbus, MS

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 42
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  19. #19

    Regis University

    #1714 institution's historical influence
    #491 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $38K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    67%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1135/24

    Denver, CO

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  20. #20

    Jacksonville University

    #1615 institution's historical influence
    #406 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $38K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1035/21

    Jacksonville, FL

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  21. #21

    Fitchburg State University

    #1691 institution's historical influence
    #650 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    88%

    Graduation

    58%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1070/21

    Fitchburg, MA

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 32
    • Completion time: 12 months
    • Format: Online
  22. #22

    Middle Georgia State University

    #5390 institution's historical influence
    #1417 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Acceptance

    99%

    Graduation

    23%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    985/18

    Macon, GA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 90
    • Completion time: 18 months
    • Format: Online
  23. #23

    University of Delaware

    #291 institution's historical influence
    #1237 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    66%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    23K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1255/27

    Newark, DE

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  24. #24

    University of Southern Mississippi

    #1076 institution's historical influence
    #825 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    96%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    13K

    Hattiesburg, MS

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 1.5 years
    • Format: Online
  25. #25

    Saint Xavier University

    #3997 institution's historical influence
    #937 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $34K

    Acceptance

    79%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/21

    Chicago, IL

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    Online Degrees

    RN to BSN Nursing
    • Required Credits: 34
    • Completion time: 205 Years
    • Format: Online
  26. #26

    Lamar University

    #1169 institution's historical influence
    #749 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    37%

    Student body

    13K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/20

    Beaumont, TX

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  27. #27

    Wilmington University

    #3043 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    10K

    New Castle, DE

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  28. #28

    Mississippi College

    #1451 institution's historical influence
    #150 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $19K

    Acceptance

    29%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1145/25

    Clinton, MS

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • Rn To Bsn
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: 12 months
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  29. #29

    Keuka College

    #3053 institution's historical influence
    #478 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    2K

    Keuka Park, NY

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 38
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  30. #30

    James Madison University

    #922 institution's historical influence
    #1172 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    21K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1205/25

    Harrisonburg, VA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 1 year
    • Format: Online
  31. #31

    Francis Marion University

    #3387 institution's historical influence
    #1269 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    75%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1005/18

    Florence, SC

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 11 months
    • Format: Online
  32. #32

    Eastern Michigan University

    #674 institution's historical influence
    #891 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    75%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    15K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/22

    Ypsilanti, MI

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  33. #33

    Quinnipiac University

    #1313 institution's historical influence
    #804 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $49K

    Acceptance

    82%

    Graduation

    76%

    Student body

    10K

    Hamden, CT

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  34. #34

    Lander University

    #3902 institution's historical influence
    #913 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    57%

    Graduation

    49%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1035/20

    Greenwood, SC

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  35. #35

    William Paterson University

    #1375 institution's historical influence
    #537 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    9K

    Wayne, NJ

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  36. #36

    Eastern Illinois University

    #1697 institution's historical influence
    #915 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    56%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1035/20

    Charleston, IL

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 35
    • Completion time: 14 months
    • Format: Online
  37. #37

    Azusa Pacific University

    #1362 institution's historical influence
    #733 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $40K

    Acceptance

    94%

    Graduation

    66%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1145/23

    Azusa, CA

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    Online Degrees

    BSN: Bridge to BSN
    • Required Credits: 40
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
    BSN: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  38. #38

    Oklahoma Christian University

    #2183 institution's historical influence
    #1456 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $24K

    Acceptance

    61%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1125/24

    Edmond, OK

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    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  39. #39

    Molloy College

    #4956 institution's historical influence
    #354 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    74%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1145/25

    Rockville Centre, NY

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    Online Degrees

    BSN: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 128
    • Completion time: 4.5-5.5 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  40. #40

    Florida Atlantic University

    #654 institution's historical influence
    #1363 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Acceptance

    75%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    26K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1160/24

    Boca Raton, FL

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    Online Degrees

    BSN: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 32
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  41. #41

    University of Bridgeport

    #987 institution's historical influence
    #577 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    71%

    Graduation

    40%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1005/20

    Bridgeport, CT

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  42. #42

    Shenandoah University

    #3888 institution's historical influence
    #858 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    74%

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1100/22

    Winchester, VA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  43. #43

    West Liberty University

    #2654 institution's historical influence
    #1313 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    2K

    West Liberty, WV

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • Rn To Bsn
    • Required Credits: 125
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  44. #44

    Madonna University

    #3591 institution's historical influence
    #1209 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $23K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    58%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1030/21

    Livonia, MI

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 16 months
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 38
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  45. #45

    Salem State University

    #2132 institution's historical influence
    #383 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    87%

    Graduation

    59%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1085/21

    Salem, MA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
  46. #46

    Campbell University

    #1559 institution's historical influence
    #486 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1130/22

    Buies Creek, NC

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  47. #47

    D'Youville College

    #3951 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $28K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1140/21

    Buffalo, NY

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 122
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  48. #48

    Curry College

    #4308 institution's historical influence
    #1033 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $41K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    55%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1025/21

    Milton, MA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  49. #49

    University of West Georgia

    #1754 institution's historical influence
    #204 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1000/20

    Carrollton, GA

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSNC in Nursing

    Concentrations

    • RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 48 months
    • Format: Online
  50. #50

    Boise State University

    #1223 institution's historical influence
    #981 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    55%

    Student body

    18K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1130/23

    Boise, ID

    View profile

    Online Degrees

    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO

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Online Degree Frequently Asked Questions

If this is your first time taking an online course, the experience may require a time of adjustment. Although you’ll typically learn the same material and take the same exams as your on-campus peers, going online will require greater independence and responsibility than going in person. You’ll be accountable for your own time management, for harnessing the online educational technology that you’ll need to use, and for completing the course requirements, such as listening to lectures, learning lessons, reading texts, and handing in assignments. This means you’ll need to create a suitable workspace for yourself, maintain a realistic schedule, and take the initiative in building relationships with your instructors and classmates. With online college, your goal is to find a balance between independence and engagement.

No. The only part of online education that’s easier than campus-based education is ease of access: all you need is a computer and an internet connection for online education. But even this seeming advantage of online education can be misleading: what’s easier, studying online with your computer and internet connection from your home where you need to cook, clean, pay rent, and maintain a job? Or studying on campus in a dorm where all your living needs are handled by the school, and college staff are there to help you every step of the way?

If you take the commute to campus out of the equation, campus-based education is easier. All the support structures available on campus for students, especially with real people to help you in person, are not there online. The demands on you as an online student will largely be the same as for your campus-based counterpart, but without the same helps.

In general, your online courses will present the same material and test you in the same way as traditional in-person courses. In many cases, you’ll even have the same instructors as your on-campus counterparts. In fact, if you are adjusting to the experience of independent learning with remote educational technology for the first time, online college may be considerably more challenging than campus-based college. For a few insights on how to manage this new online experience, check out our 10 Tips for Adjusting to School Online.

Accreditation is especially important when it comes to online college. This is because the online education landscape is a mix of highly-reputable non-profit institutions on the one end and less-than-reputable for-profit institutions on the other end. Accreditation gives you the power to identify the more reputable actors in online education. Accreditation is a stamp of approval from an independent accrediting agency indicating that a college or university is meeting standards of quality and credibility. School-wide accreditation falls into two major categories: regional and national accreditation. Regional accreditors generally hold jurisdiction only over schools in the states comprising their region, whereas national accreditors hold jurisdiction over schools in all states. Regional accreditation is widely regarded as a more rigorous standard of quality and credibility than national accreditation.

Attending a college or university that is not regionally accredited could limit your opportunities. For students seeking an online education, we strongly recommend that they opt for regionally accredited schools. Regional accreditation ensures eligibility for federal loans and grants, ensures your college credits can be transferred between schools, and ensures that your degree credits can be accepted if you wish to earn an advanced degree. For more on this important topic, check out our What is Accreditation and Why Does It Matter? College & University Accreditation Guide.

As long as your online college degree is regionally accredited (see the previous point), you should have little difficulty transferring most of your credits or credentials to another regionally accredited undergraduate school. Every school carries its own standards and procedures for granting a transfer of credits. In many cases, you will encounter some bureaucratic haggling in which some of your credits will be transferred and others may be refused. However, provided that you have attended an online school with recognized regional accreditation, you should be in good shape in transferring your credits earned online.

In most cases, as long you graduate from a well-regarded, regionally-accredited online college, prospective employers won’t look sideways at your degree. In fact, unless you attend an exclusively online college or university, there will likely be no specific indicator on your degree, transcript, or resumé differentiating your school from its brick-and-mortar counterpart. This means that your employer will likely only differentiate between an online and in-person degree if you mention this distinction.

Some employers may express the concern that because you did your degree online, you may need to transition from an online education experience to in-person workplace experience. But in an age of Covid, that concern seems much diminished. The fact is that much employment these days is remote. And collaboration increasingly happens online over Zoom. Many employers will therefore view your online degree as evidence of valuable 21st century professional skills such as independence, self-motivation, time management, and tech savvy.

If you are a student who thrives on the dynamic energy of in-person discussion, who requires the physical surroundings of a classroom to feel engaged, or who considers the social aspects of education to be of equal importance to the actual content of your courses, online education will be less than ideal for you (though depending on your circumstances, it may also be the only viable option).

While there is much in traditional campus-based education that can be substituted or simulated through the online medium, some students may find that there is nothing that can replace the conversation, collaboration, and motivation that occur in an actual in-person classroom setting. As you transition to online education, one of the biggest challenges you will likely face in getting the most out of your online classes is overcoming this difference between “real reality” and “virtual reality.” Fortunately, we’ve got some great Tips for Online Education Beginners.

The advantages of online classes are many. Above all, online courses give you the freedom and flexibility to attend class from anywhere that works for you, whether you’re at home, in a coffee shop, or in a quiet conference room at work. In many cases, you’ll also enjoy the convenience of asynchronous learning opportunities—educational experiences that you can complete at your own pace and on your own schedule. This may include pre-taped lectures, ongoing chat-board discussions, and 24/7 access to digital materials. And of course, just as there are some learners who prefer the energy of a live classroom, there are those who learn best when working in their own personal space, free from distractions. If this sounds like you, you might find the solitude of online learning to be a major advantage.

Resources for Online College-Bound Students