Registered nurses with two-year associate's degrees from community colleges may be often interested in RN to BSN programs. These degree completion programs may be commonly offered through four-year schools of nursing found in colleges and universities. RN to BSN programs, however are different from the straight BSN curriculum in that they are designed for practicing RNs. Non-clinical coursework may often be completed online, and classes may be offered at a variety of times.
Coursework and clinical experience in RN to BNS schools builds on the associate's degree, with emphasis on nursing assessment, care plans, nursing theory, community health, and leadership skills. RN to BSN programs also encourage the development of critical thinking and communication skills.
The BSN degree allows for career advancement opportunities for RNs both in the hospital milieu, as well as in community health. It also provides a platform for nurses who wish to pursue advanced practice roles, teaching, research or administration to continue on to pursue MSN or doctorate education.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for RNs in 2009 was $63,750. BSN careers allow for higher earning potential compared to the ADN degree or diploma. BSN programs allow nurses to take advantage of a greater variety of employment options in a job market that is already excellent for RNs.
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