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Becoming A Nurse With A Non Nursing Bachelor Degree

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Obtain Your Rn License


To legally practice as a registered nurse, you must pass the NCLEX-RN exam. Its a tough exam that uses complex multiple-choice questions to gauge how well you apply your critical thinking skills when making clinical judgments. Its best to sign up to take the exam one to two months after earning your BSN because everything you learned is still fresh in your mind.

Acquire An Advanced Nursing License

Receive an advanced license in nursing. License names and requirements vary depending on the state you hope to work in. Some states ask you to apply for a new license specifically in advanced practice registered nursing. In other states, you can apply for an upgrade to your existing nursing license. Certain states also require additional authorization measures for you to write prescriptions for patients.


Can I Work During The Program

Many accelerated programs can be seen as a full-time position in terms of time commitment. The scheduling may vary, but many programs hold classes daily, sometimes even Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm. Programs typically discourage working during the length of the accelerated program however, many accelerated BSN students will find the time to work once a week, depending on their needs and availability.

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Already Have A Bachelors Degree But Want To Go To Nursing School

If you already have a bachelors degree and want to go to nursing school then you have some great options. Many people choose to switch careers throughout their lifetime, and nursing is a popular career choice due to the competitive pay, flexible schedule, and health benefits.

In this article, I am going to give you information on how to go back to school and earn a nursing degree if you already have a bachelors degree. Furthermore, I am going to discuss program options, how long it will take you, and the most common requirements.

I have made a video discussing this popular topic, and you can watch it below. Dont forget to !

What Does A Nurse Practitioner Do


Like other types of nurses, nurse practitioners provide fundamental patient care. However, nurse practitioners also have the abilities and license to offer more advanced care measures to their patients. A nurse practitioner’s responsibilities vary depending on their medical specialization, but they typically include:

  • Performing medical evaluations, such as physical examinations that assess a patient’s heart, lungs and other major organs

  • Diagnosing medical conditions, illnesses or injuries

  • Creating individualized treatment plans for patients based on their medical needs and circumstances

  • Prescribing medications to patients

  • Evaluating the results of healthcare tests, such as blood samples

  • Maintaining and updating thorough medical records for each patient

  • Offering patients personalized guidance, support and resources to support their health and wellness

  • Providing basic patient care measures, such as helping patients transfer into wheelchairs, bringing patients their meals or changing hospital bedding

  • Conferring with physicians, nurses and other medical professionals as needed

Related:52 Types of Nurses

Read Also: Application For Nurse Practitioner Certification

Earn Your Bsn In As Few As 15 Months

As mentioned above, the first step to becoming a nurse practitioner without a nursing degree is to earn a BSN. If you already have a non-nursing bachelors degree, you have a couple of routes available to you to complete this step:

  • Enroll in a traditional BSN program, which generally takes four years to complete.
  • Enroll in a full-time accelerated nursing program, such as the 15-month Notre Dame ABSN program.

Your own personal career goals and timeline, as well learning preferences, may help you narrow down which path is the best option for your situation. For example, if you prefer the cadence of a traditional academic calendar, a traditional on-campus BSN program may be worth considering.

However, if youd like to enter the field sooner, you can enroll in a full-time accelerated nursing program such as the 15-month Notre Dame ABSN program. So long as you meet our admissions requirements, you are eligible to enroll regardless of your existing educational background, no matter whether you majored in accounting or zoology.

To accommodate students with various learning preferences, Notre Dame ABSN offers two program options:

Meet Necessary Nursing School Qualifications

To qualify for the Marian University ABSN program, you must hold a non-nursing bachelors degree from a regionally accredited institution. If you do have a degree in another field, then your next step would be to contact an admissions advisor who will work with you to make an admissions plan unique to your needs. They will also determine if your past credits and GPA meetMarians eligibility requirementsand determine what prerequisites you may need to take.

Once you meet theserequirementsand complete theprerequisiteslisted below, you can successfully enroll in the program. However, academics arent everything. Marian is based on strong Franciscan values, teaching future nurses to respect the dignity of each individual and practice holistic care, taking the entire person into account beyond just their symptoms. If you align with our mission and meet our admissions requirements, though, you can complete the program and earn your BSN degree in as few as 16 months.

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Clinical Partnerships In Ohio

Whether you enroll for our Cincinnati, Cleveland, or Columbus location, your clinical rotations start during semester one. We schedule your clinicals for you. However, we cant guarantee placement in a specific hospital or facility. We partner with some of the best health-care providers in Ohio, including Mercy Health, Cincinnati Childrens Hospital Medical Center, Ohio Health, and the Cleveland Clinic.

Master Of Science In Nursing

Already have a Bachelors Degree but Want to go to Nursing School

A Master of Science in Nursing is a graduate program of study designed for nurses who want to practice in a specialized role known as an advanced practice registered nurse .The curriculum is an MSN program thats far more tailored than a general nursing degree. Youll dive deep into a concentrated area of study while taking advanced courses in topics such as leadership, management, healthcare policy, and research.

Also Check: Bachelor Of Science In Nursing Accelerated Program

How Long Does It Take To Earn An Online Msn Degree

There are many factors that affect how long program completion time will be for each individual. A few of these factors include program type, student academic progress, and credit transferability. See the Tracks image at the top of the page for an estimated program completion time. Programs range from 18 months up to 36 months. Again, these amounts of time all depend on the individual student and may include the influencing factors listed above.

Earn Your Bsn In 16 Months

If you have a non-nursing bachelors degree, our full-time accelerated nursing program makes it possible to earn a quality BSN in as few as 16 months. And, just as long as you have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher, we dont care if you come from a science or liberal arts background. We leverage your existing education so you can jump right into nursing courses on your first day of the program.

Keep in mind that you must meet a series of prerequisite requirements before you can start our ABSN program. You must earn a C or better in eight prerequisite courses, four of which are science-based. Your previous field of study often dictates how many of the prerequisites youll need to take.

Once you begin our 16-month ABSN program, you can expect a rigorous blend of online coursework, hands-on skills and simulation labs, and in-person clinical rotations in diverse areas of nursing practice.

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Do Nps Need A Doctorate

As weve discussed, a DNP program generally builds on an MSN program. A DNP prepares you to hold different leadership positions at the top of the nursing profession, but does a nurse practitioner need a doctorate?

Some programs set it up so that the pathway for NPs to earn their doctorate is smooth. Some will allow you to transfer some of your MSN credits toward your DNP, and other programs even offer a BSN-to-DNP option that offers a dual MSN and DNP upon graduation of the program.

Accredited DNP programs require a minimum of 1,000 post-baccalaureate practice hours, including those in post-masters programs. Your institution determines how many graduate clinical hours are applied to the DNP and the number of additional clinical hours required for you to reach the 1,000-hour minimum. Any graduate credits and clinical hours applied toward the DNP must be completed at accredited institutions.

However, nurse practitioners do not currently need a doctorate degree to practice. While a DNP is a great way to advance your position, salary and status, its not required of nurse practitioners.

While its not currently required of nurse practitioners to hold a doctorate, this has been a topic of some debate.

Do I Need A Bsn To Become A Nurse Practitioner

Nursing Bachelor

You dont need a Bachelor of Science in Nursing or a nursing background to become a nurse practitioner. However, you will need an advanced or graduate degree to become licensed as a nurse practitioner. There are registered nurse to Master of Science in Nursing programs as well as direct-entry MSN programs that dont require a BSN.

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Direct Entry Np Admissions Requirements

Admission requirements for a Direct Entry NP program will vary from state to state. However, there are some requirements and documents that all nursing applicants need to fulfill and submit. They include:

  • An application to your nursing school of choice
  • A 3.0 GPA or above
  • GRE scores
  • Transcripts from your undergraduate experience
  • 2-3 recommendation letters
  • An essay or personal statement on why you wish to pursue a career as a nursing practitioner

Some colleges and universities that offer the Direct Entry NP program may also require you to submit your transcripts. This is done to show proof you completed the required prerequisite courses. These prerequisite courses may include biology, statistics, and human anatomy.

While the Direct Entry NP program is a great choice for a nurse practitioner with a non-nursing bachelors degree, you will still have to complete certain courses as a prerequisite for admission in a Direct Entry NP program. These requirements will depend on your undergraduate degree.

The Bsn: Not Just Another Bachelors

Your second bachelors will be quicker than the first one, and its not just because of the learning curve. Chances are that most of your first two years were spent in general studies . Expect to get credit for this work.

A lot of nursing schools have tracks specifically for second degree nursing students your whole cohort may be professionals seeking a second career! Its likely that the total program length will be about 60 semester hours. You can go at a traditional pace and finish a program within two years. There are also intensive or accelerated options that subtract out most breaks and get you through in about 15 or 16 months. There are even some programs that can be completed in a calendar year.

Prerequisites may add to program length. They vary by program, but anatomy and physiology, chemistry, statistics, nutrition, and microbiology are common requirements. The school may get you through these at an accelerated rate as well. Be aware that programs may carry a per-credit tuition rate well into the hundreds.

A GPA of 3.0 or higher may be required however, students are sometimes admitted with less. Professional references and personal statement will be a part of the package. There will likely also be an interview.

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Associate Degree In Nursing

An Associate Degree in Nursing is the minimum degree requirement for becoming a registered nurse . As an RN, youll have the credentials necessary to qualify for most nursing jobs that involve providing critical patient care and assisting physicians.

Youll find ADN programs at community colleges and some four-year institutions. Some schools also offer online nursing degrees in hybrid programs that combine virtual instruction with on-site clinical training.

ADN programs will give you the knowledge and experience RNs need to perform the following duties:

  • Assist physicians during exams, surgeries, and other medical procedures
  • Dress wounds and incisions
  • Run and analyze diagnostics tests
  • Review patient treatment plans and chart progress
  • Supervise LPNs, LVNs, and CNAs
  • Provide patient education on self-care

The curriculum for an ADN also includes studying science-related courses such as anatomy, biology, chemistry, and physiology.

This Is How To Become A Nurse If You Already Have A Degree

Accelerated Bachelors Degree in Nursing Part 2

For those who are considering a career change into nursing and already have a bachelors degree in another subject finance, restaurant management, even music an accelerated BSN as a second degree may be an excellent option for you.

Accelerated BSN programs are popularly known to offer Associate Degree Nurses a fast-track option for obtaining their Bachelors of Science in Nursing. However, there are also many programs across the country that offer an accelerated program for students who already have a bachelors degree – even if its not in nursing. Read on to learn the details of the BSN Accelerated Program for second-degree students.

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Bachelor Of Science In Nursing

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing is a four-year degree designed for RNs who want to pursue supervisory roles and qualify for higher-paying jobs. With a combination of academic classwork and on-site clinical training, youll learn about scientific areas such as anatomy, biology, and chemistry, as well as specific duties related to patient care, laboratory testing, designing treatment plans, and assisting with surgery.Some schools even offer programs that allow you to earn a BSN in a particular specialty of nursing such as acute care, geriatric nursing, infectious disease, pediatrics, and psychiatry, just to name a few. Specializing can often increase your job opportunities and potential earnings.

What Degree Is Needed To Become A Nurse Practitioner

To become a nurse practitioner, you will need to earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree. How long does it take for non-nurses to become a nurse practitioner? It can take roughly 3-5 years to go from non-nurse to NP through our program options but it depends on what education youve already earned and how quickly you want to progress.

Also Check: How To Get Into Nursing School With A Criminal Record

Cna Certificate Or Diploma

A certified nursing assistant certificate is a nondegree diploma offered at community colleges and vocational schools. Both classroom and online options are available, though all clinical hours must be performed in person at an approved location.

As a CNA student, youll learn how to provide basic healthcare services and help patients with their daily activities. Other duties typically include:

  • Transferring patients in and out of bed
  • Bathing and feeding patients
  • Communicating with family members
  • Changing bedding

The curriculum includes training in emergency procedures, personal care skills, and infection control. To increase your employment options, you can also earn voluntary certification in specialized areas such as psychiatry or geriatrics.

How Long Is An Accelerated Bachelors Program

Registered Nurse (RN)

Depending on the program structure and intensity, accelerated programs range from 12 months to 19 months, though some can be as long as 2 years. During these months, you will be taking nursing-specific courses, many of which may be condensed in order to accommodate the faster pace towards graduation.

It is important to know that the advertised length of the program does not include the time it may take to complete the prerequisite courses that are required in order to apply.

Also Check: Certified Nurse Midwife Scope Of Practice

What Is Your Why

Identify your reason for wanting to become a nurse. You might be drawn to nursing because its an in-demand career with the promise of good pay. But if you dont have a deeper motivation for becoming a nurse, money alone will not leave you satisfied in this demanding profession. You should have a true desire to care for others and improve lives.

Nurse Practitioner Salary And Job Outlook

Nurse practitioners in the United States make an average salary of $113,270 per year. However, an individual nurse practitioner’s salary depends on many factors, including years of experience, geographic location and healthcare specialization.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment opportunities for nurse midwives, nurse anesthetists and nurse practitioners will grow by 45% between 2019 and 2029. This is more rapid than the BLS’s average projected growth for most other careers. The BLS projects this increase in part because of growing needs for expanded healthcare services targeting aging adults in the U.S. The BLS also predicts that the number of states allowing nurse practitioners to provide healthcare without supervising physicians may increase, causing greater demand for nurse practitioners.

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Why Choose The Accelerated Bachelor’s Nursing Program

Youve envisioned a different future for yourself and so have we. Youre ready for a career where you can make a positive difference in peoples lives, where you are respected for your professional skill, knowledge and compassion, and where you can continually learn and grow. Youre ready to be a nurse.

The Accelerated Programs for Non-Nurses from the University of Rochester School of Nursing were designed for students just like you. You already have a bachelors degree, but youre ready to make a rewarding career change. In just 12 months, you can earn a fully accredited nursing degree through our Accelerated Bachelors Program for Non-Nurses and be on your way to a new and exciting health care profession.

The UR School of Nursing is one of the most respected nursing schools in the country. Our nursing programs are distinguished for their strong academics and immersive clinical experiences. Yes, youll be challenged, but we offer exceptional support every step of the way to ensure that you reach your goals.

Perhaps the greatest benefit of getting your degree from the UR School of Nursing is our close association with the University of Rochester Medical Center. Many graduates are employed with the Medical Center and most clinical experiences are right in the neighborhood. Your cohort will become your professional network, and your classmates and professors may likely become your future colleagues.

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