Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (2024)

Share this article


Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (10)


Updated April 11, 2024

Edited by

Reviewed by

Our Integrity Network is committed to delivering content that is objective and actionable. To that end, we have built a network of industry professionals across higher education to review our content and ensure we are providing the most helpful information to our readers.

Drawing on their firsthand industry expertise, our Integrity Network members serve as an additional step in our editing process, helping us confirm our content is accurate and up to date. These contributors:

  • Suggest changes to inaccurate or misleading information.
  • Provide specific, corrective feedback.
  • Identify critical information that writers may have missed.

Integrity Network members typically work full time in their industry profession and review content for as a side project. All Integrity Network members are paid members of the Red Ventures Education Integrity Network.

Explore our full list of Integrity Network members.

  • Best RN-to-BSN Programs and Schools
  • Featured Programs
  • Program Accreditation
  • Applying to RN-to-BSN Programs
  • Paying for RN-to-BSN Programs
  • Career Opportunities
  • What To Look For
  • FAQ

Are you an RN interested in completing your undergraduate nursing education? These top RN-to-BSN programs can be completed in just 12-24 months.

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (11)

Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (12)Credit: filadendron / E+ / Getty Images

If you have an associate degree in nursing (ADN) and a registered nurse (RN) license, earning an RN-to-BSN degree can lead to more advanced nursing positions and higher pay.

A bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree builds on your clinical skills and practical experience, leading to enhanced career opportunities and a foundation for graduate studies. Online RN-to-BSN programs let you earn a BSN in as little as one year.

Explore our rankings of the best online RN-to-BSN programs and learn more about online courses, admission requirements, and accreditation.

Popular Online RN-to-BSN Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

#1 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

University of Central Florida

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (13)Orlando, FL
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$4,478
  • Out-of-state$19,810
  • Retention Rate92%
  • Acceptance Rate36%
  • Students Enrolled70,310
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment9%
  • AccreditationYes

#2 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

Ohio State University-Main Campus

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (14)Columbus, OH
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$11,018
  • Out-of-state$34,101
  • Retention Rate94%
  • Acceptance Rate57%
  • Students Enrolled61,677
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment77%
  • AccreditationYes

#3 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

Clemson University

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (15)Clemson, SC
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$14,118
  • Out-of-state$37,110
  • Retention Rate94%
  • Acceptance Rate49%
  • Students Enrolled27,341
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment49%
  • AccreditationYes

#4 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

Lake-Sumter State College

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (16)Leesburg, FL
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$3,292
  • Out-of-state$13,276
  • Retention Rate0%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled4,342
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment79%
  • AccreditationYes

#5 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

George Washington University

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (17)Washington, DC
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$57,894
  • Out-of-state$57,894
  • Retention Rate91%
  • Acceptance Rate50%
  • Students Enrolled26,457
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment26%
  • AccreditationYes

#6 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

Appalachian State University

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (18)Boone, NC
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$4,242
  • Out-of-state$19,849
  • Retention Rate86%
  • Acceptance Rate85%
  • Students Enrolled20,641
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment60%
  • AccreditationYes

#7 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

University of South Carolina-Columbia

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (19)Columbia, SC
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$12,288
  • Out-of-state$33,528
  • Retention Rate87%
  • Acceptance Rate62%
  • Students Enrolled35,471
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment56%
  • AccreditationYes

#8 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

The University of Tennessee-Knoxville

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (20)Knoxville, TN
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$11,332
  • Out-of-state$29,522
  • Retention Rate88%
  • Acceptance Rate75%
  • Students Enrolled31,701
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment46%
  • AccreditationYes

#9 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

University of North Carolina Wilmington

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (21)Wilmington, NC
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$4,443
  • Out-of-state$18,508
  • Retention Rate83%
  • Acceptance Rate68%
  • Students Enrolled18,030
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment75%
  • AccreditationYes

#10 The Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs of 2024

Abilene Christian University-Undergraduate Online

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (22)Addison, TX
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online

Average Tuition

  • In-State$14,220
  • Out-of-state$14,220
  • Retention Rate0%
  • Acceptance Rate100%
  • Students Enrolled422
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment0%
  • AccreditationYes

We use a data-driven methodology to rank the best online RN-to-BSN programs, making it easier for you to find a program that works for you. Our methodology is based on metrics that we believe matter most to students, including academic quality, affordability, reputation, and program offerings.

Nurse Featured Online RN-to-BSN Programs

NurseJournal asked Elizabeth Clarke, FNP, MSN, RN, MSSW to review each of the online RN-to-BSN programs below. In their review, they considered factors that influence nursing student experiences, including reputation, faculty, program quality, and value.

The following are the featured programs selected by Elizabeth Clarke.

1. Ohio State University-Main Campus

“OSU’s program is 100% online and asynchronous. This is a great option for RNs who works full-time and do not want to cut back to part-time or PRN to complete their RN-to-BSN program.

“OSU also offers a great selection of financial aid and scholarships. Rather than having students spend $500-1000 per semester, they offer online resources and provide textbooks to their students at no cost. This shows dedication to their students and an understanding that the RN-BSN student is a working professional who may not be able to afford additional costs on top of tuition.”

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (23)

Meet Clarke

2. Lake-Sumter State College

“Lake-Sumter’s online RN-to-BSN program is one of the more affordable program available. The courses are only seven weeks long rather than an entire semester. This shows that the program supports working professionals as it guides them through the curriculum over a short period of time instead of prolonging the program over multiple semesters.”

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (25)

Meet Clarke

3. Appalachian State University

“APP state provides helpful breakdowns of completion times for their RN-BSN program. The program can be completed in one, two, or three-years. The cost of tuition is fair, and they have many scholarship opportunities for different communities around Western North Carolina.

“It seems to be a program built for the working RN, and I like that they offer multiple program length options to provide RNs with greater flexibility.”

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (27)

Meet Clarke

Why Is RN-to-BSN Program Accreditation Important?

Nursing accreditation ensures that a nursing program meets nationally established professional standards to provide students with a high-quality nursing education.

All nursing programs selected for our rankings have earned accreditation from either the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).

A program’s accreditation status impacts financial aid, licensure, and employment.

  • The National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN) and certification exams for advanced practice nursing roles require applicants to hold degrees from accredited nursing schools.
  • Graduation from an accredited program is necessary for state licensure.
  • Government financial assistance can only be applied to accredited nursing programs.
  • Credits from unaccredited schools may not transfer to other programs.
  • Employers and graduate nursing programs may not consider graduates from unaccredited schools.

How Online RN-to-BSN Programs Work

Depending on the program, distance learners may take asynchronous classes to lean on their own schedule. This format works best for independent, self-disciplined learners who need minimal faculty supervision.

Synchronous formats offer more interaction with faculty and other students, but less flexibility, requiring attendance at established days and times.

Online nursing students have access to the same resources as on-campus students, including advising, tutoring, technological support, and career placement services.

Because students enrolled in RN-to-BSN programs already hold a valid RN license, some programs waive the clinical requirement. However, many schools require in-person clinical training at approved sites.

Applying to an RN-to-BSN Program

Specific admission requirements for online RN-to-BSN programs depend on the school. Most programs expect applicants to hold a nursing diploma or ADN from an accredited nursing program and a valid RN license. Each program has a minimum GPA for acceptance, prerequisite courses, and health and safety compliance requirements.

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (29)

    Admission Materials

    Applicants must hold a nursing diploma or an ADN. They also need a valid and unencumbered RN license without any record of disciplinary action.

    While some online programs waive the clinical component for RNs, a school may require at least one year of nursing experience, a specific number of practical/clinical hours, or an equivalency exam. Applicants may need to submit a personal statement and participate in either an in-person or a remote interview.

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (30)

    GPA Requirement

    Prior to enrolling, you need to complete prerequisite coursework in anatomy and physiology, microbiology, statistics, nutrition, chemistry, and other fields as required.

    Nursing schools require applicants to fulfill health and safety compliance protocols that often include a drug test, a criminal background check, a physical exam, and immunizations.

  • Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (31)

    Other Requirement

    Most nursing programs require a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale.

Paying for RN-to-BSN Programs

RNs may hesitate to enroll in an online program because of the cost.

Several factors can impact the affordability of a nursing program. Consider program length and how many credits it takes to earn the degree, whether you must pay out-of-state tuition rates, and whether you can work while enrolled in the program.

Fortunately, nursing students may qualify for several financial aid opportunities. Prospective online learners should begin their search for financial aid by filling out the Free Application for Financial Student Assistance (FAFSA).

The FAFSA determines eligibility for government-funded grants or loans. Federal and state governments sponsor student loan forgiveness programs for nurses who agree to work in high-need areas when they graduate.

Nursing schools and private organizations offer both need-based and merit-based scholarships, and awards targeted for specific fields or members of underrepresented groups.

At some schools, members of the armed forces and their family members may qualify for discounted tuition. Some healthcare employers offer tuition reimbursem*nt benefits to nurses who successfully complete their degrees.

What Can You Do With a Degree From an RN-to-BSN Program?

While RNs can enter the field after earning a two-year ADN or nursing diploma, an online RN-to-BSN program offers financial and career advantages. Earning an online BSN can take as little as one year of study and often results in higher pay and increased job prospects.

The popularity of the BSN has grown. Between 2013 and 2020, the percentage of RNs with BSNs increased from 40 to 48, while the percentage of ADN holders in the same period fell from 32 to 28, according to the Journal of Nursing Regulation.

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing strongly supports the BSN as the minimum educational requirement for RNs. Many employers, including acute care facilities, school systems, and public health agencies, hire only BSN graduates.

MSN programs that prepare graduates for high-paying advanced practice nursing and leadership roles require applicants to hold a BSN degree.

Using Our Rankings: What to Look For in an RN-to-BSN Program

Before deciding what RN-to-BSN program best suits your needs, pay attention to the coursework and clinical requirements, program length, accreditation status, NCLEX pass rates, and online format.

Program Curriculum

While most programs offer similar core courses, curriculums differ in electives and concentrations. Consider what kinds of required and elective courses a program offers. Does the coursework reflect your areas of interest or prepare you for a specialization?

Clinical Experience

The clinical requirement provides real-world and practical experience that builds on the knowledge acquired through coursework and labs. Some online BSN programs do not require clinicals for students with an ADN who already completed clinical hours for their RN license.

Many programs that require clinicals let distance learners complete their hours at their workplace or near their homes. Others require students to travel to specific locations.

Program Length

Most online RN-to-BSN programs require around 30 credits, depending on the number of credits transferred from the student’s ADN. Programs take between 12-24 months to complete.

School NCLEX Pass Rate

Although RN-to-BSN students will not need to retake the NCLEX, the pass rate can still serve as a good indicator of how well a nursing program prepares its students for RN licensure. Pass rates higher than the national average suggest better program quality and teaching effectiveness.

School Graduation Rate

The graduation rate tells applicants how many students finished their nursing degree within a certain time frame. Higher graduation rates can indicate a supportive learning environment and commitment to preparing nurses for practice.

Online Learning Format and Requirements

When choosing a program, make sure that the online format meets your personal needs. Schools that offer asynchronous schedules enable students to watch lectures and complete coursework when convenient. Programs with synchronous formats require students to log in at set times. Online learners may also need to attend on-campus meetings once or more per term.

Frequently Asked Questions About RN-to-BSN

Yes. Once you have completed your associate degree, you can apply to a BSN program. You may be able to complete the BSN in two years or less, depending on the program you choose.

The time it takes to complete an online RN-to-BSN varies depending on the program and the number of ADN transfer credits accepted. Full-time students may complete all requirements in a year, while part-time students can take up to four years to earn their degree.

Many healthcare employers, especially hospitals, strongly prefer RNs with bachelor’s degrees. Although RNs can enter the nursing workforce with an ADN, they earn significantly more money after completing a BSN. Nurses with an associate degree earn an annual base salary of $76,000 compared to $93,000 for bachelor’s degree holders, according to Payscale data from November 2023.

The answer depends on your personal and professional goals. If you want to enter the workforce quickly, you can earn an ADN and pass the NCLEX-RN exam in two years. An online BSN often takes an additional 12-24 months but will qualify you for higher-paying jobs, career advancement, and graduate school.

Page last reviewed April 4, 2024. The nurse featured programs were reviewed by Elizabeth Clarke, FNP, MSN, RN, MSSW, on February 5, 2024.

Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | (2024)


Best Online RN-to-BSN Programs Of 2024 | ›

With FlexPath, you can complete your RN-to-BSN program in 9 months and under $10,000.

What is the easiest RN to BSN online program? ›

10 Easiest Online RN to BSN Programs
  • Grand Canyon University. ...
  • Walden University. ...
  • Sacred Heart University – Sacred Heart College of Nursing. ...
  • Northern Kentucky University. ...
  • Radford University. ...
  • Concordia University. ...
  • The University of Illinois – Chicago. RN to BSN 100% Online. ...
  • University of Texas Arlington. RN to BSN Online.

How fast can you finish your RN to BSN with FlexPath? ›

With FlexPath, you can complete your RN-to-BSN program in 9 months and under $10,000.

What is the fastest you can get a BSN? ›

These students have already checked off many of their general education requirements. They may have completed science credits that can be applied to their BSN degree. Therefore, an accelerated BSN can be accomplished in as few as 16 months, full-time. A key aspect to note is that ABSN programs are full-time programs.

How long is the bridge from RN to BSN? ›

  • average program length. 9-24 months.
  • average credits required. 120 including previously earned credit.
  • average earning potential. $52,080-$111,220SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Who has the shortest RN to BSN program? ›

1. University of Rhode Island. The University of Rhode Island offers an online RN to BSN that students can complete in as little as 15 months. While there are several programs on this list that can be completed in a short time and are geared toward RNs for want to obtain a BSN, URI does have one unique aspect.

Is an online nursing degree credible? ›

As long as the online program is accredited and the nursing graduate has passed their licensing exam, they will likely be considered just as qualified as any other candidate.

Is Capella University respected by employers? ›

Yes, Capella University is a respected institution.

This indicates that Capella offers academically rigorous courses and degrees that can lead to new job prospects. Therefore, you may be confident that choosing Capella University for your study is a wise decision.

Is Capella FlexPath accredited? ›

In 2020, Capella received Higher Learning Commission and Department of Education approval for the first doctoral-level FlexPath offering.

Is Capella BSN accredited? ›

For example, Capella's nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, or CCNE. That's the same commission that accredits Drexel University's nursing programs.

What is the hardest class in BSN? ›

Hardest Nursing School Classes
  • Pathophysiology. In this course, students learn how different anatomical systems work and how diseases or injuries affect these systems. ...
  • Pharmacology. ...
  • Medical Surgical 1 (also known as Adult Health 1) ...
  • Evidence-Based Practice.

What is the cheapest accelerated nursing program in the US? ›

Accelerated Nursing Programs

The most affordable online accelerated nursing program is offered by the University of South Florida at $3,152.10. The University of Wyoming offers the second cheapest accelerated online RN to BSN with a program cost of $5,370.

Is 50 too old to become a nurse? ›

It's not too late to change careers to nursing. In fact, becoming a nurse later in life might be easier than you think, thanks to nursing degree programs that leverage your existing academic credentials. Nurses and nursing students come in a range of ages.

Why is a BSN better than an ADN? ›

This degree provides broader, more comprehensive training and clinical experience than an ADN. One of the advantages of a BSN over an ADN is that many employers seeking qualified nurses zero in on candidates with a BSN.

How long after BSN can you take Nclex? ›

Although the timeline varies depending on your state, the earliest you can take your NCLEX exam is approximately 45 days after graduation. In addition to state-specific requirements, the time it can take you to sit for your NCLEX exam depends on factors such as the authorization-to-test waiting period.

Can BSN do more than RN? ›

Other Perks of Being a BSN Nurse

You'll make yourself available for more career options as you advance. You can work in a wider range of environments that are non-hospital settings, such as teaching, case management, and more. (Those career options offer a higher salary than RNs with basic credentials or ADNs.)

What is the easiest nursing certification to get? ›

Of all the nursing certifications, LPN or LVN programs are the quickest and most convenient options. Because training can be completed at a hospital, vocational technical school, community college and even online, LPN/LVN programs are ideal for students who work or have other obligations.

What is the easiest nursing degree to get? ›

Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree

A BSN degree is the easiest type of nursing degree to pursue if you are interested in continuing your nursing education and the advancement of your career.

What is the easiest type of RN? ›

8 Easiest Nursing Jobs
  • School Nurse. Average Annual Salary (April 2024): $51,500. ...
  • Nurse Educator. Average Annual Salary (April 2024): $84,000. ...
  • Primary Care Nurse. ...
  • Informatics Nurse. ...
  • Clinical Research Nurse. ...
  • Occupational Health Nurse. ...
  • Lactation Consultant Nurse. ...
  • Home Care Registered Nurse.


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Mr. See Jast

Last Updated:

Views: 6111

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (55 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Mr. See Jast

Birthday: 1999-07-30

Address: 8409 Megan Mountain, New Mathew, MT 44997-8193

Phone: +5023589614038

Job: Chief Executive

Hobby: Leather crafting, Flag Football, Candle making, Flying, Poi, Gunsmithing, Swimming

Introduction: My name is Mr. See Jast, I am a open, jolly, gorgeous, courageous, inexpensive, friendly, homely person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.