Whether you’re already a registered nurse (RN) or you plan on becoming one, getting a BSN degree can open up plenty of nursing career opportunities that go beyond patient health care and can lead to new administration and leadership positions.

Nursing is a truly competitive field and only having an ADN degree doesn’t elevate the profession enough. A BSN degree is now preferred. If you’re looking to further your education and want the best and fastest way to get a BSN degree, here is our complete BSN guide.

Here you will find all the information you need to know about what you can do with a BSN degree, how to prepare for it, and the various career paths it opens. Keep reading and discover why the BSN degree is important, what the requirements are, and what it can do for your nursing career.

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Should a highly-experienced nurse return to school for a BSN?

You’ve been out of school for 20 years. You’re older than most other RNs, more experienced, and you love your job. Should you go back for a BSN? Is it even worth it at this point? What more is there to learn?

Many experienced RNs are feeling pressure from their employers to return for their BSN, even though the employer has no complaints about their job performance. This can be frustrating for RNs who want to continue working and don’t want to have to deal with the hassle of going back to school. Let us ease your mind.

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The decisions you make when you are starting or furthering your nursing career can be heavily influenced by how much you earn. Figuring out how much you can make as a nurse is important for planning your education, as well as deciding in which state you will practice.

Because searching for nurse salaries by state can get tedious very quickly, we’ve created a list with all the relevant information about the average nurse salary per state, for you to access in one place.

In this article, you will find information about the average nursing pay scale, how much you can make per month and per hour as a nurse, the salary differences between registered nurses and RN’s with Bachelor of Science in Nursing, as well as a list of the Registered Nurse salaries for all states in the US.

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Are you a registered nurse who wants to get better and advance your career? As nursing is a competitive field, basic certifications alone don’t really elevate your professional profile anymore.

If you’ve already mastered your domain, moving forward in your nursing journey is the natural next step and a way to improve your daily processes.

To move up the career ladder, look to further your training and enhance your critical reasoning skills. Education is key, and you should consider it alongside practical experience and networking. There are various ways to achieve that promotion or advance your already acquired nursing skills, and we’re going to lay some of the paths you can follow.

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There’s no better way to improve your chances at a fulfilling nursing career than with a BSN degree from a reputable institution.

Even when you’re working in a role that’s perfect for you, a BSN can help you leverage your experience and improve your earning prospects.

Keep reading to find out the most important advantages of gaining a BSN degree, including why it enables you to deliver patient care of the highest caliber and how it can enhance your career outlook.

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So you have your Associate Degree in Nursing. What next? Maybe you’re feeling content as a registered nurse, or maybe you want to strive for something better. Either way, hopefully this information will help you be a little more informed about what Nightingale’s RN-to-BSN Program has to offer.


The program is designed to build upon the things you learned in your associates to give you a broader, more well-rounded sense of nursing. Not only will you go deeper into concepts you have learned previously, like disease prevention and health promotion, the RN-to-BSN Program at Nightingale will teach you things you haven’t delved into quite yet, like psychiatrics and gerontology.


Dr. Kay Haw, an instructor in our BSN program, said “Some areas that warrant further detail presented in a BSN program are theoretical foundations, critical ethical and legal issues related to the nursing profession and healthcare organizations, research practices and processes, evidence-based practice, governance, project management, population health and leadership.”


As a nurse, continuous education is part of the profession because the health care field is constantly evolving with new and improved means of patient care. Advanced degrees and specialized certifications are sometimes necessary to get you to the nursing level you want to be at and, not to mention, make you more attractive to your current and future employers.


So let’s talk about what will you learn in an RN-to-BSN program.


General Education Courses

Part of Nightingale’s RN-to-BSN Program includes general education courses: English, math, anthropology, psychology, sociology, and others. Nightingale accepts transfer credit from other schools if the classes fit the criteria. During the admissions process, you will submit your official transcripts from all prior colleges, and the registrar will do an evaluation to determine transfer credit. If you have already completed the GE credits beforehand, you could complete the program in as few as 8 months.


Specialized Nursing

Have you wondered what you should specialize in? In the BSN program, you can dive into different programs to see what you like. You will foray into gerontology, critical care, psychiatrics, disease management, and many other fields. This gives you the opportunity to experience different fields within nursing to help determine what specialty fits your interests and unique talents. In addition, a deeper understanding of each of these fields will better prepare nurses to manage complex patients with multiple needs.


There are many things explored more in detail in a BSN program that provide an increased knowledge base and foundation into health care. There are also many areas that are introduced to instill critical thinking at a whole new level,” said Dr. Haw.


Critical Thinking and Decision Making

Like Dr. Haw said, critical thinking is up to a whole new level in the BSN. Are you an on-the-fly decision maker who can triage people in an ER with a blink of an eye? Probably not. This skill takes a great deal of practice! With courses in critical thinking and decision making, learners will be taught to use, as the Nightingale College BSN course description page reads, “ethical, political, legal, cultural, spiritual, clinical, and other considerations as part of the decision-making process.”

Want to take a deeper look into the RN-to-BSN nursing core classes to really know what you will have the opportunity to learn?
Click here. 
Ethics and Policy

We know policy sounds boring, but a foundational knowledge of ethics and policy can keep you from losing your job, and help you make decisions. Nurses who are BSN-prepared are often selected for leadership positions, and as a leader, being keen on ethics and adherence to hospital policies are a must. As a nurse, you already know the importance of understanding ethics and policy. To help get you to that next level, a deeper understanding is crucial and that is what a BSN program helps you do.



We can’t say it any better than the course description does: “Research in nursing is important to promote, maintain, and restore health, and to ensure quality and safety in nursing practice.” These courses promote scholarship in nursing by showing learners how scientific nursing knowledge is gained. As a leader in health care in your community, no one knows the community’s health concerns more than you. The RN-to-BSN Program is there to act as a stepping stone and supporter to help you determine what health issues are prevalent while providing you the resources and education to take action.


Community Health

Many of the courses focus on nursing from a community health perspective instead of from a patient-to-patient perspective. Nurses in Nightingale College’s BSN Program will be trained to think about health care as it affects societies and vulnerable populations, and understand the unique circumstances in a multicultural society. As part of Nightingale’s BSN program you will complete a community health project to improve the health in your community.


Capstone Leadership Project

Nightingale’s RN-to-BSN Program is unique and is designed to help you stand out from your nurse colleagues as a leader. The Capstone Leadership Project is a program-long course that you start in your first semester and wrap up in your last. However, it is not like other capstone projects in nursing schools; Nightingale’s is employer focused. We want to position you as a problem solver, a leader, and critical thinker. The project is not to be taken lightly as it requires you to engage with your employer to uncover solutions to problems that hinder patient care.

Curious about the Capstone Leadership Project?
Learn more by clicking here.

In a field with ever-changing technologies, it is important to be current on health systems and equipment. Information management and patient care systems evolve constantly, so it is important to know how to navigate this new space. An updated knowledge of computer science and technology will help you stay current in the workplace, and, as our slogan states, be “Better with a BSN.”


Are you ready to become better with a BSN? We are ready to help you! Take the first step in securing your nursing future by visiting www.nightingale.edu/bsn.

Are you an aspiring nurse or a full-time registered nurse who wants to take on new responsibilities and improve your outcomes? If you feel like going back to school for a traditional course would take too much of your time, perhaps you should consider an online nursing program.

Nowadays, many nursing colleges include online courses or distance learning components in their curriculum, which aim to support nurses in completing their education without missing out on valuable clinical hours.

If you want to earn your BSN degree and still be able to work full-time in the hospital, consider an RN-to-BSN online (bridge) program. Having doubts? We’re here to clear the air and tell you everything you need to know about online nursing programs.

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Today there are numerous options for choosing a meaningful career in nursing. Before you decide which path to follow, it’s important to consider your strengths and lifestyle as well as your desired income, so that you can pick the best job for you.

Many of the coveted nursing jobs require formal education and experience beyond the basics, i.e. an associate degree or bachelor of science in nursing as well as a nursing license and solid transferable skills.

In many careers, a certification recognizing the specialty is not required by law, but it may be used by employers as a measure of competence. Read on to find out which nursing jobs are available to you and what you can do to improve your chances at a successful nursing career.

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If you’re passionate about helping others, nursing has probably been one of your top career choice. There are many paths you can pursue to become a nurse. The most famous two are through an associate degree in nursing program or a bachelor’s degree program.

Because both ADN and BSN graduates become registered nurses, it’s easy to get confused which is the better option to pursue. Let’s find out what the differences are between the two-degree types and explore which degree may be best for your needs and career goals. We’ll explore the advantages and differences of both ADN and BSN degrees, so you can be a step closer to finding your answer!

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