Accelerated Second Degree BSN Programs

With the ongoing nursing shortage and an aging population, the demand for qualified nurses continues to rise. If you already hold a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field and want to transition into the rewarding nursing profession, an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program offers a fast-track pathway.

Traditional BSN programs are designed for students who have no prior college experience and only a high school diploma. These programs typically take four years to complete and include general education courses as well as nursing courses.

ABSN programs are designed for students who already have a non-nursing degree or at least enough college credits to qualify for admission. These programs typically take 12-18 months to complete and focus solely on nursing courses.

Key differences between traditional BSN programs and ABSN programs

FeatureTraditional BSN ProgramsABSN Programs
Admission requirementsHigh school diplomaNon-nursing degree or college credits
Program length4 years12-18 months
Course contentGeneral education courses + nursing coursesNursing courses only
PaceSlow-pacedFast-paced
CostMore affordableMore expensive

In 2023, several high-quality accelerated BSN programs are offered online, combining distance learning with in-person clinical training.

The University of Texas-Arlington’s blended program allows transferring up to 70 credits and pays tuition per course. Methodist College in Illinois provides rigorous preparation through online and weekend on-site instruction. Kent State University in Ohio offers flexible day, evening and weekend schedules to accommodate working professionals.

Other noteworthy online accelerated BSN programs include Emory University in Georgia, which equips students with nursing skills in just 54 weeks, and Roseman University in Nevada, which divides the curriculum into focused blocks. The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh offers an intensive 1-year program, while Thomas Edison State University in New Jersey enables completion in just 12 months.

These accelerated programs prepare graduates to succeed in diverse healthcare settings through a mix of online coursework, simulation lab practice, and hands-on clinical training. Their focused curricula cover core concepts like critical thinking, evidence-based practice, nursing specialties and technologies.

By graduating from an accelerated BSN program, you can embark on a meaningful and financially-rewarding nursing career in record time.

Popular Online ASBN Programs

  • University of Texas – Arlington, TX
    • 15-month blended program that combines online coursework with in-person clinical training.
    • Option to transfer up to 70 credits from previous education.
    • NCLEX-RN pass rate consistently exceeding 90%.
  • Methodist College – Peoria, IL
    • Rigorous training through a combination of online day classes and weekend face-to-face lectures and clinical experiences.
    • Offers both full-time and part-time options.
    • Curriculum covers essential nursing subjects and prepares students for the NCLEX-RN exam.
  • Kent State University – Kent, OH
    • Offers three schedules: day, evening, and weekend.
    • Emphasizes critical thinking, clinical reasoning, and communication skills necessary for compassionate nursing practice.
    • Eligible students must have a minimum GPA of 2.75 in their bachelor’s degree and completed pre-requisite courses.
  • Emory University – Atlanta, GA
    • Online second-degree BSN program that equips students with professional skills in just 54 weeks.
    • Curriculum covers various nursing specialties and prepares graduates for diverse healthcare settings.
    • Emory emphasizes active learning and offers a supportive environment to foster student success.
  • Marian University-Indiana – Indianapolis, IN
    • ABSN program prepares career changers for nursing through a faith-based curriculum and a combination of online coursework and on-campus simulation experiences.
    • Clinical rotations start from the first semester, providing valuable hands-on learning opportunities.
  • Northeastern University – Boston, MA
    • 16-month curriculum that includes online sessions, simulation learning, and clinical experiences.
    • Students gain skills in evidence-based nursing practice, technology in healthcare, and various nursing specialties.
    • The program’s cohort format fosters collaboration with peers.
  • University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh, WI
    • Fast-track option that allows graduates to gain effective nursing skills and knowledge in just one year.
    • The program combines online coursework with on-site requirements, including orientation and clinical training.
    • Students benefit from a focused and intensive curriculum that emphasizes critical nursing concepts.
  • Thomas Edison State University – Trenton, NJ
    • Partially online accelerated BSN program that enables students to complete their nursing education within twelve months.
    • The program offers a flexible learning environment with asynchronous online classes.
    • The curriculum includes in-person courses, lab sessions, and clinical learning to develop clinical reasoning and interpersonal skills.
  • Roseman University of Health Sciences – Henderson, NV
    • Blended learning format that combines online and in-person courses.
    • Curriculum is divided into 15 topics called blocks, allowing students to focus on one block at a time.
    • Former U.S. Armed Forces personnel enjoy special benefits, including military credit transfers and dedicated faculty support.
  • University of Wyoming – Laramie, WY
    • Accelerated online nursing program designed for individuals with a minimum GPA of 2.50 holding a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field.
    • Demanding curriculum requires dedication and disciplined scheduling.
    • Students undergo several hours of clinical training in approved healthcare settings within Wyoming, enabling them to develop essential nursing skills.
  • Grand Canyon University
    • Program Overview: The ABSN program at Grand Canyon University is a 16-month accelerated program that allows students with a non-nursing bachelor’s degree to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.
    • Benefits: The program offers several advantages, including a faster transition into the nursing profession, a hybrid learning model that combines online coursework with practical experiences, and the opportunity to become a practice-ready nurse upon graduation.
    • Requirements: Applicants must have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree or a minimum of 60 non-nursing college credits, a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher for the last 60 credit hours completed, a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher in the ABSN prerequisite courses, and successful completion of the HESI A2 entrance exam.
    • Tuition and Financial Aid: Tuition rates may vary, but GCU offers competitive pricing for its ABSN program. Additionally, financial aid options are available to qualified students.