RN to BSN Online Programs – 6 Frequently Asked Questions

| Updated on March 27, 2024
RN to BSN Online Program

There are numerous paths you can take if you are thinking about obtaining a nursing degree. You can work as a registered nurse (RN) or earn a higher degree (BSN, MSN, or even DNP) in nursing. The more educated you are, the more chances you have to work for the employer and department of your choice. Then, there is the perk of a higher salary! 

Today, RNs with a BSN degree are preferred over others. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing points out that more than 86% of employers today prefer BSN nurses over those working with the qualifications of an RN. However, the competition in nursing is so fierce that 64% of registered nurses already hold a BSN degree. Considering that the same number of people did not leave their jobs in hospitals, how did this happen? Through online education. 

The popularity of online nursing courses has made getting a BSN degree easier today. In response to the need for nurses on the hospital floors, various highly attractive institutions now offer online BSN courses, which gives nurses much relief. 

Online courses allow you to design your schedule, control the pace of your course, attend class at any time without leaving your duty, even in the middle of the night, and do your homework when everyone is still sleeping. If you are an RN and thinking about boosting your knowledge and career, the time is ideal to enroll in an online BSN course.

It is quite normal to have plenty of uncertainties before you commit to this decision. Hence, it is always better to familiarize yourself with the few common questions about earning your RN to BSN degree online to clear your mind of all the doubts. Let’s check out the six most frequently asked questions about the degree.

1. Who Can Enroll in RN to BSN Online Programs?

Nurses from all backgrounds and specialties can enroll in a BSN program to enhance their professional knowledge. There is a significant shift in nursing education as nurses realize that a BSN degree can get a better paycheck home, fast-track their career development, and be a part of many high-ranking professionals in healthcare. 

The RN to BSN program is more streamlined than the previously available BSN four-year program. The enrollment rate of this program is continually increasing due to its popularity and success in preparing nurses for complex healthcare roles.

2. What Can I Learn in an RN to BSN Program?

Knowing how a degree program will value your knowledge before enrolling in one is crucial. An RN to BS program builds on the fundamental knowledge of nursing. In addition, the curriculum emphasizes evidence-based practice, interprofessional collaboration, and leadership skills. You will be prepared for both clinical and administrative roles. Thus, this course will provide you with the necessary credentials to advance your career while at the same time providing knowledge-based services to your patients. 

While you may not understand the wisdom of adding liberal arts to your BSN curriculum, according to experts in this field, such courses enhance your critical thinking, build an advanced foundation for higher education, and allow you to adapt to new roles and opportunities.

3. What Courses Will I Study in an RN to BSN Online Program?

This level of study does not repeat what you learned at the ADN or diploma level. So, you can expect to learn new things from this online degree. In these courses, you learn how to improve patient outcomes, provide evidence-based care, and garner positive responses. Furthermore, you will be able to analyze the patient’s condition, anticipate potential problems, and collaborate with other healthcare professionals to support the patient. Both clinical and soft skills such as communication, problem-solving, and analytical skills.

These are some of the courses you’ll take:

RN to BSN Promoting Healthy Lifestyles:

You will learn how to educate and coach your patients on matters such as disease prevention and healthy lifestyles.

Reading & Writing in Nursing Studies:

The reading and writing course expand your knowledge of written communication skills through extensive readings.

Community-Based Nursing for RNs:

It focuses on healthcare demands, requiring nurses to address population-focused practice and community health needs. Health care for dissimilar populations broadens your understanding, no matter where they live. Your ability to help others expands significantly.

Nursing Research:

This course will teach about the research process, decision-making based on research, and clinical practice. Other sources you might encounter include:

  • Legacy of the Family.
  • Role Transition to Professional Nursing.
  • RN Essentials of Professional Nursing Practice: Nurse as Advocate
  • RN Essentials of Professional Nursing Practice: Nurse as Leader

4. Are Colleges Offering Online Degrees Accredited?

Most of the schools offering an RN to BSN degree are accredited. But some schools might not be accredited; for instance, for-profit schools are not always accredited. Therefore, it is essential to know whether your chosen school is certified and eligible to issue online nursing degrees; when not, this can be a red flag about their performance. Sometimes, many hospitals have stringent requirements when recruiting BSN nurses. Additionally, this is a must-meet admission requirement in some advanced degree nursing schools.

5. Where can I Fulfill My Practice Requirement?

Most online nursing schools don’t have this requirement for the students to work in a hospital or a healthcare setting to meet the practice requirements. Instead, they can work in their local community to meet this requirement. The only requirement is that your supervisor or professor agree to your chosen site and preceptor.

6. Do I have to Fulfill an Hours Requirement?

Some programs require students to meet an Hours requirement to get experience, while others don’t. Therefore, you must confirm this requirement before enrolling in an online course. Those without an RN requirement can take a capstone course at the end of the degree program to design their practice experience.


An RN to BSN degree can completely change your career; it puts you on a fast-track growth trajectory, enhances your clinical knowledge foundation, and provides better patient care services. Moreover, it allows you to earn a better salary, improve your social status, and par with other high-ranking healthcare professionals. Your ability to work in leadership positions helps you be a change agent. But before you select an online RN to BSN course, make sure to have all the information before committing to this big step in your life. 

Akansha Singhal

EdTech Writer

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