Online Nursing Degree

Online colleges help at work nurses earn a nursing degree in a flexible format. Earning a nursing degree online may ready you to enter or further a nursing career. Both registered and advanced care nurses are in high demand, making now a perfect time to start.

A nursing degree is a path of study that one can follow to prepare for a professional career in nursing. It is often the credential you need to pursue a registered nurse (RN) or other state license. There are online nursing degrees at all levels. From associates and bachelors (BSN), to masters (MSN) and doctorates. At each level, there are ways to tailor your nursing degree to line up with your goals. This may help you to gain patient care skills to work with a specific group (e.g. infants) or health issue (e.g. cancer patients). 

Before getting to online nursing degrees, there are a few other types of programs to mention. These are not direct pathways to become a nurse. But they may prepare you to get your feet wet in a nursing support role and help others along the way.

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN)

Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) have basic patient care duties. Things like taking blood pressure or starting an IV drip. They work under the direction of RNs and doctors. To become an LPN, you need to complete a state approved Practical Nursing Diploma program. Usually these are available at technical schools and community colleges. Some high schools, online colleges and hospitals too.

LPN programs award a certificate or diploma and may take one year (or more) to complete. Having the diploma allows you to pursue a license. But first you need to take and pass an exam. The National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN).

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs)

Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) work in hospitals, nursing homes and long-term care facilities. Their tasks involve helping patients with basics. Things like taking a bath, eating or getting dressed. CNAs also listen to patients and check vital signs. Plus, in some states, they may dispense medication. They perform these duties under the watch of LPNs and/or RNs. To become a CNA, you must complete a state-approved education program. Plus, you must pass your state’s competency exam.

Registered Nurses (RNs)

Registered nurses (RNs) have a wide range of patient care duties. Some RNs are responsible for overseeing LPNs, CNAs and other healthcare staff too. In their role, a RN often starts with a patient assessment. They observe and record symptoms and medical history. Often, they also educate patients and the public about various health conditions. To become an RN, there are three possible education paths.

  1. Diploma (From an approved nursing program)
  2. Associates degree in Nursing (ADN)
  3. Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

From there, you’ll need a nursing license. To become a registered nurse, you’ll need to do two main things. One is graduate from an approved nursing program. The other is to pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN).

BSN – Bachelors of Science in Nursing Degree

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is a higher educational award than the Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN). Having a BSN degree, you may be eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam. You don’t always need a BSN degree to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam. But things may be changing. Many hospitals ask that all incoming nursing staff hold a BSN in addition to state credentials. 

As such, the BSN is the entry level education listed for registered nursing. A BSN or higher the rule of thumb for other positions too. Among them are administrative positions, research, consulting, advanced practice roles (APRN) and teaching. It’s also a gateway to a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or doctoral degree.

Usually, a BSN program offers well rounded professional nursing instruction. It includes courses in nursing science, patient care and key skills. These skills are also called ‘competencies.’ BSN competencies are about understanding how to manage care. This involves being able to make decisions. Often under a variety of clinical situations and care settings. You may also put in some time in the lab and clinical settings as you practice under supervision.

It may take about four years to earn a bachelors degree in nursing online. But many online colleges offer accelerated BSN programs. These tend to be for non nurses (career switchers) who have a bachelor’s degree in another major.

RN to BSN

Registered nurses with an ADN or diploma often return to school to earn a BSN degree. They often do so through an online RN to BSN program. As it is a post licensure program and students have the RN license, an RN BSN program may take less time. Many online colleges offer programs that take about 18 months to two years full time.

Direct Entry BSN

An accelerated BSN or direct entry BSN is for those who have a bachelors degree in a non nursing major. It allows students to apply general education credits from their first degree to the BSN. This path may take between one to one and a half years.

How much does nursing school cost? The average tuition of a nursing school varies. It often depends whether you pay in state or out of state tuition. At last check, the average tuition for an in state nursing school is $7,992. The average tuition for an out of state nursing school is $33,920.

MSN – Masters of Science in Nursing Degree

A master of science in nursing (MSN) is a graduate nursing degree. It is also the least education you’ll need to pursue an APRN license. APRNs are Advanced Practice Registered Nurses. There are four advanced practice roles that an MSN may prepare you for. These are:

  1. Clinical nurse specialists (CNS)
  2. Nurse practitioners (NP)
  3. Certified nurse midwives (CNM)
  4. Certified nurse anesthetists (CRNA)

To enter any of the above nursing professions, nurses need to earn an MSN in their specialty. Having the MSN is a requirement to take a role-specific exam to gain licensure. Though there is a motion in place to change this to the Doctor of Nursing Practice at some point.

The curriculum for an MSN program can vary a bit depending on what you pursue your MSN degree in. Apart from the direct care APRN roles, there are programs that focus on indirect care. Nurse educator, nurse executive and the like. 

Either way, most programs involve a mix of more complex competencies and knowledge. One often studies pharmacology, anatomy, physiology, IT, community health and evidence based practice. There is a practicum too.

Another variable for online MSN programs is the time it takes to complete one. If you already have an RN license and a bachelors degree in nursing, it may take two years to earn your MSN degree. While an online BSN to MSN program may suit some, it may not suit you. Fortunately, there are other programs that enable working nurses to earn a masters degree in nursing.

Direct Entry MSN

Accelerated or direct entry MSN programs are for students with a bachelors or grad degree in a non-nursing major. They often take up to 3 years to complete. Upon completion of year one, many are eligible to take the NCLEX-RN exam.

RN to BSN to MSN

An RN to MSN program is a three-step program if you enter as an ADN prepared nurse. After earning a BSN, the nurse is prepared to enroll in an MSN program. Usually, you need to fulfill extra clinical hours, but many programs take 2 to 3 years to complete. At the end, successful grads earn two degrees – BSN and MSN.

RN to MSN Bridge

An RN to MSN program is similar to the RN to BSN to MSN. But instead of step by step, nurses may enroll in the MSN portion of the program while still completing their BSN. It is set up differently in each school but may take around 3 years to complete. At the end, successful grads earn the MSN – but not always the BSN also.

DNP – Doctor of Nursing Practice

A Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP degree) is the highest award nurses might achieve. It has the same academic value of a PhD in Nursing. But unlike the research focus of the PhD, the DNP is nurses who want to hone expertise in their clinical area. In fact, since 2004, the nursing world has been trying to replace the MSN with the DNP as the entry point to APRN nursing. As a practice-focused doctorate, the DNP aims to instill leadership skills.

The curriculum of a DNP revolves around translating nursing science (evidence) into practice. This often means learning how to collaborate in health care teams to deliver care. Other aspects include clinical hours with your chosen patient group and a final DNP project. There are many ways to enter an online DNP program so the time it takes to complete one varies. But for post-MSN nurses, it may take about 3 years.

How much does it cost to earn an MSN or DNP degree online? The average cost of a graduate degree from a public institution is $11,617. This means you will be able to find online nursing programs both more affordable and more expensive than this amount.

What can I do with an Online Nursing Degree?

A nursing degree may ready you pursue a range of jobs in healthcare and the nursing profession. As a nursing professional, you might deliver care to a specific patient group. But if your interests lie helping in other ways, careers in indirect care need nursing skills too.

With a BSN degree and current RN license, you might work as a registered nurse. Many RNs focus on providing patient care for a niche group. This can include addiction, oncology, critical care, infants, public health and cardiovascular nursing.

With an MSN degree and current license in your field, you might pursue a career in an APRN role. Of these, nurse practitioners (NPs) often apply their skills to a specific group too. Adult/geriatric, women’s health, pediatrics, psychiatric and mental health are a few.

With a DNP degree, you may have other options besides being a leader in advanced practice nursing. One of these is to teach the clinical components of nursing programs. DNP leaders might also set hospital policy to improve the quality of patient care. Or manage teams of nurses. 

Here are 15 potential careers in nursing that require either an undergraduate or graduate nursing degree:

  1. Community Health Consultant
  2. Public Health Educator
  3. Director of Nursing
  4. Staff Nurse
  5. Emergency Department RN
  6. Nursing Professor
  7. Nursing Information Systems Coordinator
  8. Nurse Manager
  9. Board-Certified Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  10. Nurse practitioners (NP)
  11. Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM)
  12. Chief Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  13. HIV CTS Specialist
  14. Nursing Director
  15. Chief Nursing Officer

Is a Degree in Nursing worth it?

One reason to consider earning a nursing degree online is for the potential to earn more. Another is the opportunity to pursue a wider spectrum of career paths. Let’s take a look at salaries for LPNs (diploma) vs. registered nurses (BSN). In the latest data from the BLS.gov, Licensed Practical Nurses earned a median annual salary of $46,240 in 2018. In comparison, the median annual salary of an RN was $71,730. That’s $25,310 per year more.

If you’re wondering whether getting a masters in nursing is worth it, let’s again look at salary from the BLS.gov. In 2018, the median annual wage for nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives and nurse practitioners was $113,930. That’s $42,200 more than for RNs and $67,690 above LPNs. About jobs and opportunity. Nurses are vital contributors to healthcare, and this is only getting stronger. The need for registered nurses is on the rise by 15% to 2026. It’s 31% for APRNs. These figures mean there are jobs available now, and more predicted for the future.

Some of the reasons for this are aging population and the health issues that go along with it. There’s also more emphasis now on team-based models of care and preventive health.

Nursing Degree Jobs & Salary

Occupation Average Salary Jobs
Nurse Anesthetists $181,040 43,570
Nurse Practitioners $111,840 200,600
Nurse Midwife $108,810 6,930
Registered Nurse $77,460 2,982,280

Top States for Jobs as a Registered Nurse

State Jobs Annual Mean Wage
CA 302,770 $113,240
TX 218,090 $74,540
FL 181,670 $67,610
NY 178,320 $87,840
PA 148,040 $71,410

What classes will I take with an Online Nursing Degree?

Most online nursing programs, like on-campus ones, consist of the same basic curriculum. But, the classes and number of clinical practice hours differ for each nursing degree. Many online colleges deliver all or most nursing degree courses via web technology. But in some programs, one may need to visit campus from time to time. That stated, you are usually able to complete your clinical hours in your local community.

As a rule of thumb, accredited online nursing degree programs may follow certain content guidelines. These often stem from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). The AACN has what they call the “Essentials Series”. Each one covers programs at the bachelors, masters or DNP levels. Nursing schools who abide by this may use different names for their courses. We’ll take a look at a few topics you might learn at each level before taking a deeper look at some popular classes.

Bachelor’s Degree Courses

A nurse with a BSN degree has added duties. This often includes playing a support role to patients and families. They may also need to educate their patients, taking time to go over health habits. Apart from helping with a patient care plan, they may also assist doctors. Key courses at this level might include:

Pathophysiology for Nursing

Students taking this course will often learn the concepts of pathophysiology. This allows them to understand alterations in body systems. They may begin to develop the skills necessary for clinical decision making to promote health and to reduce risk. Students may learn the concepts of disease management in this area as well.

Pharmacology for Nursing

In this area, students are often taught the basics of pharmacology. This may include the relationship of health of individuals and families. Students often discuss topics such as how drugs work and interact with each other. They may learn about therapeutic and adverse effects with drugs. In some cases, they may learn about nursing responsibilities as it applies to these areas.

Medical Surgical Nursing

This is a multiple step course in most cases. In the intro level, students may learn about medical surgical patient needs. They may learn about care planning and health promotion in these areas. Students may learn to use evidence based practice and critical thinking skills. The student may learn how to provide a holistic approach to caring for a person in a medical surgical context.

Pediatric Nursing

The focus here is on working within the complex area of pediatric nursing. This may include multi system and medical surgical areas as well as others. Students may learn the various developmental stages in this field. Students are likely to learn about the purpose, results, and nursing responsibilities as they apply to this group of the population.

Graduate Degree Courses

An MSN program often helps students learn to conduct a head-to-toe physical exam. Depending on the program, you may learn to apply these skills for a specific patient group. It also aims to further knowledge about prescribing medications. Most study plans also help students refine research skills. This is key to using sound decision making skills in dealing with patients and improving quality along the way.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program prepares leaders in advanced nursing practice. DNP prepared nurses know how to bring evidence into the practice arena. They also understand how to improve health care outcomes. Both to guide complex care delivery and nursing education. While studying nursing science and how to apply it, you will likely research for a DNP project. It is a synthesis of course material, research and clinical learning. Key courses at this level include:

Evidence Based Practice for Patient Centered Care

This class will often focus on understanding the nature of evidence as it relates to this field. This may include a look at how this evidence should weigh in the decision making process and how it can impact patient outcomes. Students may learn about various methods and approaches. Their goal is to investigate, evaluation, and create the best possible solution.

Quality Improvement of Interprofessional Care

This is a key concept for many in the nursing field at the masters level. Learners may develop skills in the design and implementation of interprofessional quality improvement projects. Many times, they will evaluate these initiatives, too. Students may learn factors such as examining the quality in the context of various areas such as safety.

Health Care Law and Policy

In this type of course, students often learn about regulations. This may include applications related to political and legal requirements. They may also learn how to analyze the effects of this type of policy on practices and how they provide services. Students may learn how to meet legal compliance as it applies to the work they are doing. They may learn more about health care policy.

Economics and Decision Making in Health Care

This master level course often focuses on the concepts, principles, and issues as they relate to decisions made in health care. This may include things like legal, political, and demographical factors that play a role in business decision making. Students may learn about the affect of operational planning and managing performance data in this class.

How long does it take to get a Nursing Degree online?

The time it takes to complete a nursing degree online depends on a few things. One is your level of education. Another is the level of nursing degree you are working to achieve. Last, your course load – are you studying full-time or part-time?

Here are some average time frames for earning a degree in nursing online. Most programs entail courses and clinical hours. You’ll need to log the hours to earn your degree.

  • Associates degree (ADN): two years
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing; four years
  • Direct Entry BSN: one to one and a half years
  • Master of Science in Nursing: two years
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice: three years

University Level of Degree # of Credits Required Starts Per Year Minimum Months to Complete
Ohio University Main Campus RN to BSN 120 8 12
Mount Carmel College of Nursing RN to BSN 128 3 18
Samuel Merritt University MSN-FNP 49 3 20
Simmons University RN to MSN 68 multiple 30
University of Mary ADN to MSN 43 multiple 20
Chamberlain University RN to BSN to MSN 122 3 48
Samford University RN to DNP-FNP 84 3 48
Vanderbilt University BSN to DNP 64 3 36
University of Cincinnati Main Campus BSN to DNP 78 – 84 3 36
Benedictine University BSN to MSN 39 3 24
Xavier University BSN to MSN 36 3 24
Bradley University MSN to DNP 43 multiple 36

15 Online Nursing Degrees

Here are 15 schools where you can find online nursing degrees. Many of these online colleges offer more than one track and/or concentration.

  1. Chamberlain University
  2. Purdue University Global
  3. Clarion University
  4. Pennsylvania State World Campus
  5. Fort Hays University
  6. Benedictine University
  7. Xavier University
  8. Simmons University
  9. Samuel Merritt University
  10. University of Mary
  11. Bradley University
  12. University of Michigan – Flint
  13. George Washington University
  14. Vanderbilt University
  15. University of Cincinnati

FIND AN ONLINE NURSING DEGREE

Let’s take a closer look at the online computer science degrees that these 15 schools have to offer.

1

Chamberlain University

RN to BSN (to MSN)

Fully online except the MSN-FNP


This online RN to BSN program requires 122 credits. You’ll begin with the RN to BSN curriculum. Then, as you move into the MSN program you may choose between one of five specialty tracks. These are Nurse Educator, Executive, Family Nurse Practitioner, Healthcare Policy or Informatics. While in the RN to BSN program you may study topics like:

  • RN collaborative healthcare
  • Transitions in professional nursing
  • RN health assessment

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $19,375
Grad N/A
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$4,146

Average Net Price:
$33,720

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

2

Purdue University Global

RN to BSN

Fully Online


This online BSN program requires 90 to 180 credits and some students may complete their program in as few as 18 months. It focuses on several key areas including health assessment and case management. In other courses, you may study emerging trends in health care and:

  • Primary Care in an Ambulatory Setting
  • Faith Community Nursing
  • Transcultural Nursing

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $14,358
Grad $10,580
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$5,289

Average Net Price:
N/A

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

3

Clarion University

RN to BSN

Fully Online


This online RN to BSN requires 120 credits and included lower and upper division nursing core courses. The school also has programs at the associates, masters and DNP levels. In studying for the BSN, you may take classes in areas like:

  • Information Management for Nurses
  • Healthcare Policy and Nursing
  • Promoting Healthy Communities

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $16,078
Grad $12,917
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$6,404

Average Net Price:
$19,769

Military Programs:
Credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Middle States Commission on Higher Education

4

Penn State World Campus

RN to BSN

Fully Online


This online RN to BSN program entails 120 credits. There is also an accelerated RN to BSN program. While learning about nursing research and the basics of nursing informatics, you might study:

  • Transition and the Professional Nursing Role
  • Health Concepts
  • Intro to Forensic Nursing

Another option at this school is to complete a 12-credit online certificate. These are available in nursing management, nursing informatics and nursing forensics. You need a valid RN license to apply. Six certificate credits may apply to their online RN to BSN program.

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $13,988
Grad $22,186
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
N/A

Average Net Price:
N/A

Military Programs:
Credit for military training, dedicated point of contact & member of SOC.

Accredited:
N/A

5

Fort Hays University

MSN in Nursing Administration

Fully Online


Foundation courses plus nurse administrator topics. One can take part in nurse administration experiences in their community. There is also a nurse educator track for the MSN. Some of the classes you might take are:

  • Complexity in Healthcare Organizations
  • Administrative Management
  • Developing Nursing Theories

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $15,360
Grad $10,980
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$4,946

Average Net Price:
$12,108

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

6

Benedictine University

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

Fully Online


This online MSN program covers 15 credits of foundation courses followed by 21 to 24 credits in a concentration area. Aside from this, there is a 140-clock-hour practicum. Students may complete their program in two years. The two tracks are:

  • Nurse Educator
  • Nurse Executive
  • MSN/MBA is also available

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $34,290
Grad $19,409
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$17,572

Average Net Price:
$25,604

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

7

Xavier University

RN to MSN

Fully Online


This online RN to MSN program is for RNs who do not have a bachelor’s degree in any field. It consists of 36 to 54 credits. There is also an MSN for RNs with a bachelor’s degree (36 credits). Students can focus their degree on one of three areas.

  • Forensic Nursing
  • Nursing Education
  • General Studies

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $40,450
Grad $12,076
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$21,299

Average Net Price:
$32,429

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

8

Simmons University

RN to MSN/FNP

Online with Some Campus Presence


This online MSN program consists of 68 credits and at least 836 clinical hours. Full-time students need about 8 terms of 30 months to complete their MSN. There is also a part-time option which may take as few as 36 months. Students can choose another area or follow the FNP curriculum. Family nurse practitioners work with patients across the life span providing primary care in a broad range of settings. Classes for the MSN-FNP include:

  • Contemporary Issues in Professional Nursing
  • Nursing Care of Individuals, Families and Communities
  • Health Assessment

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $42,070
Grad $21,818
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$27,038

Average Net Price:
$30,841

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, dedicated point of contact & member of SOC.

Accredited:
New England Commission of Higher Education

9

Samuel Merritt University

MSN-FNP

Fully Online


This online MSN with a focus in family nurse practitioner consists of 49 credits. It is available in a full-time format that takes as little as twenty months to complete. In addition to online study, you will complete three semesters of clinical practicum hours. Some of the topics you may study in this program are:

  • Care of Acute and Episodic Conditions
  • Family Centered Advanced Practice Nursing
  • Advanced Physical Assessment/Lab

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $50,138
Grad $51,885
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$11,668

Average Net Price:
N/A

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program & dedicated point of contact.

Accredited:
WASC Senior College and University Commission

10

University of Mary

ADN to MSN

Online with some On-site Practical Experiences


This is an online ADN to MSN Nursing Leadership and Management program. It does not confer a BSN in the middle of the degree and may take about 20 months. It requires 43 credits plus 500 experiential hours. Some of the topics you might learn about are:

  • Healthcare Law and Policy
  • Human Resource Management
  • Community as a Partner

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $19,074
Grad $17,694
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$10,282

Average Net Price:
$17,903

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training & dedicated point of contact.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

12

University of Michigan – Flint

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Online with Minimal Campus Visits


This online DNP program has two entry points, BSN-DNP and MSN-DNP. The BSN to DNP entails 67-78 credits. Masters-prepared nurses who are already APRNs may complete 28-31 credits. Both programs offer a range of concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

For RNs who need an alternate admission path, there are other options such as RN-MSN Nurse Educator and RN-DNP. There’s also a dual MSN/MBA.

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $23,502
Grad $17,523
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$7,780

Average Net Price:
$12,153

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

13

George Washington University

DNP

Hybrid (Online Courses and Some On-Campus Visits)


Students may enroll in the online DNP with a BSN or MSN. The post-bachelor’s DNP offers three program options. Each requires 81 credit hours plus 1000 clinical hours.

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner

The online post-master’s DNP program options focus on preparing students for clinical practice, executive leadership or health policy. They require fewer courses (E.g. 43 DNP in Executive Leadership). Plus, you need to put in practice hours.

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $56,935
Grad $31,824
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$29,939

Average Net Price:
$38,829

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, dedicated point of contact & recognized student vet organization.

Accredited:
Middle States Commission on Higher Education

14

Vanderbilt University

DNP and PhD in Nursing

Online with Campus Residencies


This online DNP program entails 36 credits plus 500 hours of clinical practice integration. It offers two study tracks: Advanced Practice and Executive Leadership. The Advanced Practice Track requires an MSN in advanced nursing practice. Applicants to the Executive Leadership Track may have an MSN in healthcare leadership or nursing informatics. Some of the classes you may take are:

  • Evidence Based Practice
  • Informatics for Scholarly Practice
  • Statistics in Health Sciences

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $52,070
Grad $49,124
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$42,483

Average Net Price:
$25,855

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program.

Accredited:
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

15

University of Cincinnati

DNP

Online with Campus Requirements


This online DNP has two entry points. There’s a BSN to DNP and a shorter Post-MSN to DNP program. The post-MSN program consists of 42 credits and 504 clinical hours. This may take a fulltime student four semesters to complete. Classes stress leadership, evidence-based practice and quality improvement. You may also study:

  • Finance and Economics of Health Care
  • Planning, Management & Evaluation of Programs and Projects
  • Biostatistics for Evidence-Based Practice

Students may tailor their studies through a concentration. Nurse Anesthesia is only available onsite but online options include Adult-Gerontology (Primary or Acute Care), Nursing Administration, Psychiatric Mental Health, FNP, Pediatric (Primary or Acute Care). They have a PhD in Nursing too.

Tuition and Fees:
Undergrad $26,994
Grad $26,210
Special rates available for military students.

Avg Grants & Scholarship Aid:
$7,568

Average Net Price:
$19,219

Military Programs:
Yellow Ribbon Program, credit for military training, dedicated point of contact, recognized student vet organization & member of SOC.

Accredited:
Higher Learning Commission

*Unemployment Earnings.  Sources for school stats and data include the NCES and IPEDS.