Archive for category: RN to BSN Guides

Today, the majority of the interprofessional medical team, from social workers and pharmacists to physical therapists, already have a minimum bachelor education. So having more and more BSN-prepared nurses is only a natural progression within the field. This does not mean that ADN nurses are not competent. It only means that the needed attributes and skill sets are expanding in order to catch up with an ever-changing climate.
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The differences between RNs with an ADN degree and RNs with a BSN degree have been the subject of an ongoing debate that has lasted for years.  Putting aside the extra cost and time it takes to finish a bachelor’s program, with the clear benefits that the degree offers such as higher nursing positions and better pay, choosing the right nursing qualifications has been a matter of choice. 

However, things are changing, with new legislature pushing for BSN-educated nurses.  

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Owning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree has unquestionable advantages, although, at the moment, not all registered nurses have obtained their qualifications through a BSN. Nurses who finish an associate’s degree program and have passed the licensure exam can practice their dream job in healthcare facilities, but all signs indicate that this is a temporary situation.

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Choosing a career in nursing is not an easy decision. No big career decision in life comes without a bit of research about the opportunities that a certain job might provide.

Globally, 75% of people put job security above all else when choosing a new position, according to studies. This makes job security as important, or even more important in some cases, than salary or benefits.

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Most professions require constant learning for people to advance in their careers, and nursing is no exception. It is safe to say that while nursing schools prepare students for real world situations, they do not teach everything. In this day and age, the medical and healthcare industries are constantly evolving due to technology and research.

Fortunately, the digital age provides convenient options for nurses looking to pursue further education. With a variety of online programs from various colleges, universities, and even online businesses available, nurses may improve their quality of care and patient outcomes, which could lead to career advancement. Have a look at some of the essential nursing skills you can learn online below.

Communication Skills

Nurses who aspire to be leaders someday should be able to communicate effectively. As a nurse, it is the nature of your job to interact with different kinds of people, from your patients and their families to other healthcare professionals. It’s important then to identify various communication strategies that will improve your quality of care.

Although written a few years back, Kourkouta and Papathanasiou’s advice on Communication in Nursing Practice still very much applies. Published on Materia Socio Medica in 2014, the duo wrote, “The best expertise training and continuing education of nurses in matters relating to the proper technique of communication will enable them to respond adequately and humanely to the expectations of patients.”

There are various online learning resources nurses can access to hone their communication skills. Some courses are short, free, and efficient, which may be most convenient for nurses with busy schedules. For example, has several free communication courses that nurses can learn from, such as Communicating Effectively: How to Inspire and Convince and Communication Skills for Bridging Divides. Although these courses are aimed at professionals in general, nurses can still apply these lessons to everyday scenarios.

Critical Thinking

Many nursing errors are caused by a lack of critical thinking. This refers to the ability to identify a problem and determine the best or most effective solution. It is a skill that is important in times of emergencies, which healthcare personnel often face. Malaysian researchers recently found a link between nurses’ critical thinking skills and decision-making, which proves that critical thinking does influence patient outcomes. Therefore, continuously developing this skill falls under a nurse’s duty to provide quality care. 

Fortunately, it is a transferable skill that can be taught through effective mentorship and peer-to-peer support. Many online portals offer this subject as well, whether it is through online CE programs or medical forums. Nurses can also opt to review case studies online and put their thinking skills to the test.’s Improved Critical Thinking and Clinical Reasoning course is one example. The program lets nurses review results from key studies and examine strategies enumerated in the course. This online course is accredited and provides continuing education for the healthcare team.


The nursing field offers a wide range of careers. There are various paths licensed nurses can take, whether they are just starting their practice or are in the middle of their nursing career. Registered nurses (RNs) having first finished Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) programs or nursing diplomas at community college usually look to earn their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree (BSN) when they are ready to take on greater responsibilities and broader roles in healthcare. There are many career options you can consider once you have your BSN, as was noted previously on Nightingale College’s Alternative Nursing Careers Beyond Bedside Care blog post. Moreover, thanks to modern technology, nurses can now obtain their BSN degrees through more convenient means. Virtual learning environments may prove to be a more flexible and convenient option for registered nurses, as they can study for a degree and practice their profession at the same time. They can also earn their BSNs much faster than conventional methods, since RN to BSN programs usually last for just three semesters.

If you are looking to hone certain skills that may be useful to your services, or study to advance your nursing career, rest assured there are online courses that can suit your needs.

Written by Rachel Davis

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree (BSN) is  a gateway into a professional registered nurse (or RN) career and a great solution to take the next step in your career if you are an RN without a BSN degree. 

Although some of you already work as RNs without having this degree, deciding to get it would lead to more career opportunities and higher pay. Moreover, according to, The American Association of Colleges of Nursing predict that, in the near future, hospitals hoping to earn Magnet status will need to increase their BSN workforce to 80%.

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    Application deadline is July 30th, 2021.

So if you’d like to start preparing for the next phase of your BSN-prepared career, this guide covers all the steps you need to know about the application and enrollment process, and how to get the esteemed BSN degree.  

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A BSN is a Bachelor Degree in Nursing that prepares you for a career as a registered nurse (RN), but also qualifies you for a series of responsibilities and roles that a regular RN is not qualified to do.

There are two types of BSN program:

  • the full-time BSN program, dedicated to students who don’t have any prior experience
  • the bridge RN to BSN program, a shorter program dedicated to nurses who already have their RN license.

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

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    Application deadline is July 30th, 2021.

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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    Application deadline is July 30th, 2021.

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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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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.

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    Application deadline is July 30th, 2021.

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!

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