Online nursing schools provide opportunities for registered nurses who have two-year degrees or diplomas to earn a bachelor’s degree. For those who already have bachelor’s degrees, online schools offer masters degrees.

Once the degree is completed on either level the graduate will find considerable opportunities for high-level jobs. Bachelor’s level nurses can find jobs as nurse managers and directors of nursing. In many areas, schools and colleges require their nurses to hold at least a bachelor’s degree. The nurse who earns a master’s degree can teach nursing or work as a nursing administrator. In hospital settings nurses with advance degrees often serve as directors of certain programs such as research and professional development.

What Is Studied?

The course of study in online schools for nursing depends on whether the degree candidate is seeking a bachelors or master’s degree. Those seeking bachelor’s degrees take advanced-level courses in areas such as biology, sociology, human development, communications, leadership and courses in specialty areas of nursing. Nurses seeking the master’s degree take advanced nursing courses, courses in administration, leadership and courses that focus on a specific area of interest or expertise. Students in graduate programs may also be required to write a thesis to complete at master’s program.

A nurse should pursue a higher degree because it is an opportunity for both professional and personal growth, and shows the desire to be one of the best in the field. The fact that health care is a field with ever changing technologies is another reason a nurse might choose to advance his or her education online.

The standard courses taken in online programs are those that do not require constant in person contact with an instructor. Candidates would have completed those courses in an earlier program. Courses are advanced and would lean more toward administration, development of leadership and people skills and advanced nursing care.

Why Pursue A Degree Through An Online Nursing School?

A nurse seeking an advanced degree would find the online nursing degree a logical choice. This type of program allows a nurse to have the best of both worlds. He or she can continue working while completing courses. Whether the nurse works full-time or part-time, these programs allow nurses to stay employed. This is important for a nurse who has spent several years at the same job and has earned extended leave and retirement benefits. Some employers may not hold a position and allow a nurse to take one or more years off to complete an advanced degree. Pursuing the degree online also means that students do not need to worry about long drive to campus, parking permits and all the extras that come with matriculating in a campus-based program. Getting the degree online also means that nurses with families and young children will not have the stress of having to spend the time away from family required to travel to, sit in classes on campus and drive back home several times each week. Studying online also offers students the ability to be self-pacing, meaning that each student learns at a pace that is comfortable for him or her.

What Are The Admissions Requirements?

Admission requirements for online RN to BSN program include having a diploma or two-year (associate degree) in nursing, and a current unrestricted license. Those who enter master’s degree programs must have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited nursing school, and an unrestricted licensed to practice. It also helps if nurses have excellent job and personal references.

These programs also prefer students who have a track record of being self-starters since online studies require a student to be personally motivated and able to work without supervision. Since online programs require group projects, students should have a proven ability to organize and lead groups, and to get along well with others. In the master’s degree program, nurses may be required to take an entrance examination such as the Graduate Record Exam, the Miller Analogies Test, or the Graduate Management Admissions Test. In very competitive online programs, stellar references and high scores on the admissions test may give an applicant the edge over other candidates with lesser qualifications.