Online Registered Nurse (RN) Programs

By Nikita Nath

Updated February 13, 2023
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Nikita Nath

Nikita is a psychologist working primarily with children using a child rights-based approach. She also writes content for various websites and blogs on diverse topics, focusing primarily on academia. Her hobbies include traveling, reading, and discovering different coffee-making techniques.

Degrees

Bachelors in English, Journalism, and Psychology; Masters in psychology with clinical specialization

Areas of Expertise & Credentials

  • 2 years of experience working as a content writer with various start-ups
  • 1 year of experience working as a child psychologist with Insight
  • Working on various projects of inclusion for neurodivergent children
  • 2+ years of experience teaching psychology online

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The nursing profession includes continuous and empathetic care for the injured, disabled, dying, or sick. The occupation also assumes responsibilities for encouraging the health and well-being of families, communities, and individuals in the community and medical setting. In the United States, completing a registered nursing program online will allow one to take the licensing exam. There are many educational paths to online registered nurse programs, including a diploma or certificate from the nursing degree, an associate degree in nursing, and a bachelor of science in nursing. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports around 203,200 openings for registered nurses, on average, for each year, over the decade[1]. One could be entrusted with providing and coordinating the care of the patients while educating the public and patients about varied health conditions.

What to Expect from an Online
RN Program

Various institutions provide registered nurse programs online and on campus. Students can take up two and four-year programs, including an associate’s degree in nursing or ADN, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing or BSN, a Master of Science in Nursing or MSN, and a Licensed Practical Nurse or Licensed Vocational Nurse or LPN/LVN. The degrees differ in program delivery, and credits can vary between 35 and 120. Most nursing programs require clinical residency, internships, and preceptorships besides RN to BSN. All these degrees are available online as well as in accelerated nursing schools. Students can expect to learn about patient care, medical equipment, medical terminologies, and more.

Curriculum and
Coursework

Learning Outcomes and
Skills Gained

Types of RNs Students
Can Obtain

Areas of Specialization for
RN Students

Full-Time and Part-Time
Programs

Since there are many registered nursing programs online, the duration of each will differ from degree to degree and institution to institution. On average, completing the associate’s degree in nursing could take up to two years. A BSN degree could take about 12 months to 4 years, depending on one’s previous qualifications. An online MSN degree could take an average of 2 years to complete. Full-time and part-time programs are available for all these degrees, along with accelerated versions; therefore, the duration varies widely.

Requirements for Getting into an
Online RN Program

How to Ensure an Online RN Program
Is Accredited

Where to Find Free Online Courses
for RN Students

Free nursing courses online can help nursing students understand how to improve their management of patient symptoms and make essential clinical decisions within the scope of their nursing practice. Here are some to explore:

CourseDescriptionProvided by
NIOSH Training for Nurses on Shift Work and Long Work Hours[6]This course elaborates on the health and safety risks of long work hours. It also recommends strategies to help one implement them in their personal lives and improve the quality of their shift work.NIOSH
Introduction to Integrative Nursing[7]In this course, one learns the critical principles of integrative nursing and behavioral indicators. Learners also understand how to apply integrative nursing goals and methods in their practice.Coursera
Injection Safety: A Focus on Infection Prevention[8]For nurses, one essential task is administering injections regularly with a lot of efficiencies. This course refreshes their knowledge about preventive measures before, during, and after administering an injection.American Nursing Association
Cultural and Linguistic Competence[9]This course helps identify the various barriers in the treatment of underrepresented communities and how to develop strategies to overcome them. By understanding aspects of cultural competence, improving health outcomes is possible for diverse patients.Scientiacme

Ways to Pay for an Online
RN Program

Career Opportunities and Salaries
After Graduating

Certifications and Licensing for Online
RN Students

Additional Resources for Online
RN Students

FAQs About Online
RN Programs

What does a registered nurse do?

How can you become a registered nurse?

What do I need to do to be an advanced practice registered nurse?

Can you get your RN license online?

What is the difference between an RN and a BSN?

What are the different types of nurses?

Do RNs get a good salary?

Author Bio:

Nikita Nath

Nikita is a psychologist working primarily with children using a child rights-based approach. She also writes content for various websites and blogs on diverse topics, focusing primarily on academia. Her hobbies include traveling, reading, and discovering different coffee-making techniques.

Degrees

Bachelors in English, Journalism, and Psychology; Masters in psychology with clinical specialization

Areas of Expertise & Credentials

  • 2 years of experience working as a content writer with various start-ups
  • 1 year of experience working as a child psychologist with Insight
  • Working on various projects of inclusion for neurodivergent children
  • 2+ years of experience teaching psychology online

Disclaimer:

the average tuition (based on degree type for in-state students), average graduation rates, and rankings are based on data from various sources, including the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), and are variable over time. All rankings and statistics are subject to change. The rankings are solely the opinion of Find Best Degrees (FBD) and are based on our proprietary methodology. They do not represent the views of the institutions or organizations mentioned, nor do they represent any official government census or survey. Furthermore, any views or opinions expressed on this page are of FBD’s researchers and teams. Unless otherwise specified, they do not represent the thoughts and opinions of the individuals, institutions, or organizations mentioned. This page’s content is provided solely for informational purposes, with data drawn from various sources, including IPEDS. FBD and its employees make no guarantees regarding the accuracy or completeness of any information found on this page or by following any link. FBD will not be held liable for any errors or omissions in this material nor any losses, injuries, or damages resulting from the exposure or use of this information. Although the information on this page is/was correct at the time of publication, readers should exercise caution because some or all of the provided information may have changed over time, potentially resulting in inaccuracies. For more information, please read our Terms of Service. Trademarks and logos are the property of their registered owners. | Page last updated: Dec 2023.