Top 50 Best Value Online RN to BSN Programs 2017

The health care system in the US is in serious need of nurses. That’s been the story for a long time, but there still simply aren’t enough nurses to meet the needs of the largest generation of Americans ever – the Baby Boomers, who are reaching their golden years – and the second-largest generation, Millennials, who are reaching adulthood and all the responsibilities for professional life and parenthood. The Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates a growth of 16% for RN nursing, and warns that, while there is still a notable nursing shortage, competition is still increasing – a bachelor’s degree is becoming the minimum. Even aside from the higher skills and knowledge, the BSN is a financial advantage: statistically, BSNs make higher salaries, have greater career opportunities, and can advance more easily.

Navigating an Online RN to BSN Program

For working RNs who don’t want to interrupt their job, or can’t afford to take one or two years to go back to school, there is a wealth of top-tier, world-class college and universities offering online BSN programs. Most online BSNs are “bridge” programs, meaning they close the gap between the RN and a full BSN degree. Pretty much every program will expect applicants to have already attained an RN license and earned a 2-year associate’s degree or hospital diploma before applying. Though work experience isn’t always necessary, it is often beneficial, since many programs will afford credit for time spent nursing professionally. In most programs, coursework can be done 100% online; some programs require clinical practice to be done in the university’s state, while others allow students to make arrangement for clinicals in their home area. Some programs will even allow students to use current work experience to fulfill clinical requirements. Further, some employers will even pay for their RNs to acquire a BSN degree!

How We Ranked the Best Value Online RN to BSN Programs

Value Colleges considers only accredited nursing schools, either through the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Association (CCNE). This choice ensures that all the Best Values display a common level of quality, integrity, rigor, and value that translates into a marketable degree. We formulate our ranking using three metrics:

  • Pay/ROI from College Scorecard
  • U.S. News & World Report national rankings
  • Credit per hour tuition rate

NOTE: Not all programs are available to residents in all states, so check admissions requirements carefully to make sure the school you want is available in your state.


University of Central Florida

Founded in 1963, the University of Central Florida originated as an engineering and technology school intended to prepare professionals and workers on the Space Coast (Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral). That straightforward mission quickly expanded, however, and over the last fifty years UCF has grown exponentially, enrolling the largest undergraduate student body in the US (over 55,000). With such demand, UCF has become more selective by default, while continuing to grow in stature. UCF has been named one of the top up-and-coming universities in the nation, one of the most innovative, and a top 100 public university by U.S. News & World Report.

The CCNE-accredited UCF College of Nursing offers a fully online RN to BSN degree completion program for working nurses who already hold RN licensure. As the first college in Florida to develop the online program, UCF pioneered and has had time to make it one of the best not only in Florida, but in the nation. For Florida students who want some face-to-face interaction, some courses are available on campus, but the entire degree can be completed online in almost every state. UCF has also been named a best value by Kiplingers, USA Today, and the Princeton Review, a reflection of its high quality and low cost. The University of Central Florida has jumped in the Value Colleges ranking, from #7 in 2015 to #1 in 2017.

Cost Per Credit: $300
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Massachusetts Amherst

Widely ranked as one of the greatest public universities in the nation, the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a flagship, land-grant research institution known for across-the-board excellence in teaching and research. Founded in 1863, UMass’s original focus, as all land-grant universities, was agriculture and mechanical technology, which gradually expanded to include the liberal arts and professional programs. Today UMass is acclaimed as one of the most respected universities in the US, in fields ranging from business and engineering to nursing. UMass was also a pioneer in adult education and distance education, launching the University Without Walls in 1971 for working adults, a program that planted the seeds for UMass’s world-class online education.

The UMass College of Nursing is one of the most respected in New England, offering comprehensive nursing programs at every level from bachelor’s to doctorate. UMass offers a fully online RN to BSN degree completion program designed for working nurses already licensed to work as registered nurses. Students can choose between a 1-year or 2-year plan, depending on their scheduling needs, and while one on-campus orientation is required, all other courses are fully online. The UMass online RN-BSN has also leapt forward 17 points in from the 2015 to 2017 Value Colleges ranking. For working nurses in Massachusetts, the UMass online RN to BSN carries the globally-recognized UMass name and provides everything necessary for a professional career of leadership and service.

Cost Per Credit: $385
Accreditation: CCNE


Florida International University

Florida International University was founded in just 1965, but that five decades has been enough to turn a small regional college into one of the largest, most desirable universities in the US. FIU was originally intended to meet the need for higher education in south Florida; while the private University of Miami had been there since 1925, there was no public university for the rapidly growing region. Since Florida International grew with Miami, the university’s focus has always been on the particular needs of a diverse population and urban life. As such, FIU is noted as one of the most diverse institutions in the nation, and their programs in areas such as business, law, nursing, and medicine are at the top for Florida and the South.

FIU’s Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences is highly diverse, with a majority-minority student body largely composed of Hispanic, African-American, and Asian students. For working nurses already licensed and in the field, FIU offers an online RN to BSN degree program that provides a full bachelor’s completion curriculum fully online. Clinicals are required, but students can complete their clinical requirements close to home, adding to the flexibility of the FIU program. The online RN to BSN helps FIU’s College of Nursing achieve their mission of providing quality education and care, especially for underserved populations.

Cost Per Credit: $329
Accreditation: CCNE


The Ohio State University

Founded in 1870 as a land-grant agriculture and mechanics college, it took only eight years for The Ohio State University to reach full university stature, and to establish what would become one of the most recognized brands in American higher education. Ranked as a top 20 public university by U.S. News & World Report, OSU is also recognized as a Public Ivy, a public institution with the quality and reputation of the Ivy League. OSU is Ohio’s only Carnegie Foundation top-tier public research university, and major innovations in areas ranging from renewable energy to cancer research have given OSU national attention. OSU has also become a national leader in online education.

The OSU College of Nursing is recognized among the top nursing programs in the nation, earning U.S. News & World Report’s #5 ranking for nursing graduate schools. OSU offers an online RN to BSN degree program that takes full advantage of the College of Nursing’s excellent faculty, and the opportunities for flexibility and convenience that online education provides. OSU’s online bachelor’s degrees have been ranked in the top 10 nationally by USN&WR, and OSU goes to great lengths to make their programs accessible, including a partnership with Ohio community colleges and low tuition rates. Close mentorship and student support help ensure success in the online format, making OSU one of the best online nursing programs anywhere.

Cost Per Credit: $398
Accreditation: CCNE


Arizona State University

Arizona State University has humble beginnings in 1885 as the Territorial Normal School, a teacher’s college founded to educate educators for the Arizona Territory, but since the turn of the century, there’s been little cause for modesty. Regularly ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the most innovative university in the nation, Arizona State has made the 21st century its own, defining the New American University with inclusion, experiment, and calculated risk-taking. ASU has especially made significant inroads in online education, developing more than 100 fully online degrees and creating more interactive tools and methods to make online education as immersive as on-campus.

With its experience and pedigree, ASU’s online RN to BSN degree program is a natural choice for working nurses in Arizona and elsewhere. Students may transfer up to 75 credits or more, depending on where they were obtained, and courses are set up in a convenient seven and a half week schedule, allowing students to potentially complete their bachelor’s degree in just 15 to 18 months. All courses are fully online and taught by experienced, highly prepared faculty members, including a Fulbright Scholar and numerous nursing award winners. Whether students are looking for advancement in their current job, higher pay, or advanced, specialized master’s education, the ASU online RN to BSN will set them on their way.

Cost Per Credit: $500
Accreditation: CCNE


Old Dominion University

Founded in 1930 as an extension campus for the College of William & Mary, Old Dominion University has grown into one of Virginia’s largest and most prestigious institution. While ODU’s first mission was to provide two-year education for the people in the Virginia coastal region, it quickly expanded to education and engineering programs, and over the course of the 20th century developed into a major research university in its own right, with federal sea and space-grant status. In the last two decades, Old Dominion has especially made its name on distance learning, starting satellite distance programs in 1994 and becoming an early adopter of online education.

ODU has been offering distance education courses for registered nurses since 1987 – a long, illustrious history for the field. Further, Old Dominion’s College of Health Sciences, and the School of Nursing in particular, has been ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, and a 50 year history of excellence in nursing education can give prospective students faith in the ODU online RN to BSN degree program. Fully online courses give working nurses the flexibility to work and take courses, while personalized guidance from ODU’s top-notch faculty helps students make their way through the program with confidence.

Cost Per Credit: $355
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Florida

One of the most influential and esteemed institutions in the South, the University of Florida is a major land, sea, and space-grant research university. Like other land-grant universities, UF was founded as an agricultural college, though the flagship Gainesville campus dates back to a public seminary founded in 1853. As Florida’s first and leading public research university, UF has been responsible throughout its history for providing professional and technical education to the people of Florida, from medicine and law to engineering and business. UF is ranked as one of the nation’s top degree awarding institutions for African-American and Hispanic students, and regularly stands in U.S. News & World Report’s top 10 and top 20 public universities.

The College of Nursing stands out among UF’s divisions, ranking as one of the South’s most respected nursing schools. UF was the first nursing school to offer the nurse practitioner and PhD of nursing, now standard programs, and the many interdisciplinary research centers at UF give nursing students access to the most current data in the world. UF’s online RN to BSN degree program allows working nurses with an associate’s degree to complete their bachelor’s entirely online, with clinical components administered locally. The UF name is trusted throughout Florida, the South, and the US, allowing online graduates to take their career to any location, and any level, they might imagine.

Cost Per Credit: $500
Accreditation: CCNE


Indiana University Bloomington

Recognized as a Public Ivy, Indiana University Bloomington is the flagship of the Indiana University system, a nationally-recognized public research university that represents the heart of culture and learning in Indiana. With roots going back to a state-supported seminary founded in 1820, IU has been preparing leaders and professionals for nearly two centuries, building up a national reputation for entrepreneurship, innovation, and excellence along the way. Today, with eight IU campuses, IU Bloomington (the flagship in one of the Midwest’s most loved college towns) is tasked with preparing professionals in business, research, government, and more, while IU’s sizeable online education program has helped provide opportunity beyond any campus.

The IU School of Nursing offers an online RN to BSN degree completion program designed for the present and future of nursing practice and leadership. IU’s online BSN program is the same curriculum offered on the School of Nursing’s eight campuses, but using the convenience and flexibility of online learning to extend the opportunity even farther. Designed specifically for the needs of the working adult, the RN to BSN can be completed in only one year of full-time coursework, or 18-24 months for part-time students. Nursing students are also attracted to IU’s low tuition rate, which makes the BSN completion program affordable for just about any working nurse.

Cost Per Credit: $310
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Illinois at Chicago

Founded as an independent institution in 1965, the University of Illinois at Chicago’s history actually goes back farther, to a temporary two-year campus of the University of Illinois started in 1946 to meet the educational needs of returning WWII veterans on the GI Bill. Demand for a full college designed for working adults in Chicago grew until UIC came into being in 1965. Merger with the University of Illinois Medical Center completed the process, and today UIC is the largest college in Chicago, the nation’s largest medical school, and a major public research institution. As a Minority Serving Institution, UIC has a highly diverse student body, and their programs are noted for their entrepreneurial drive and social responsibility.

UIC has also been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best online educators in the nation, a distinction that extends to the UIC online RN to BSN degree completion program. With a highly respected College of Nursing recognized as one of the best in the Midwest, IUC provides working nurses with the opportunity to earn a degree that carries a lot of weight on the job market without having to leave their current jobs. Students are never required to come to campus, and courses are taught by the same highly decorated faculty as UIC’s on-campus nursing programs, making UIC’s online nursing bachelor’s a best possible investment.

Cost Per Credit: $519
Accreditation: CCNE


Penn State World Campus

The Pennsylvania State University is many things – a major, public land-grant research university, a Public Ivy, and one of the largest universities in the world by total enrollment. Founded in 1855 as a farming school, the Pennsylvania State University has earned its reputation as one of the leading research institutions in the nation, but that’s not the story for now. Penn State is also a pioneer in distance education, having created correspondence courses for Pennsylvania farmers way back in 1892, and once again pioneering distance education in 1998 with the creation of the Penn State World Campus, one of the first fully independent online campuses ever opened by a major public research university. With more than 120 fully online bachelor’s and graduate degrees, Penn State World Campus is a world leader.

Penn State’s College of Nursing offers a fully online RN to BSN degree program through Penn State World Campus that has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best online bachelor’s programs in the nation. With working nurses in mind, the Penn State RN to BSN is designed for maximum flexibility, with conventional semester-long courses, accelerated seven and a half week courses, and hybrid online/on-campus options. Students can also choose to add a certification for greater specialization: Nursing Management, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Forensics are available online. Any nurse with an RN license anywhere in the US is eligible to apply.

Cost Per Credit: $542
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Beginning in 1885 as a normal school (the 19th century standard for teacher education), the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is the largest college in the Milwaukee area and a first-tier public research university. In 1956 Milwaukee State College became the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, entering the UW system and beginning a period of growth that would see it become a nationally-ranked institution. U.S. News & World Report recognizes UWM among national universities, while the Princeton Review ranks it as one of the top regional institutions in the Midwest; either way, UWM is on the way up in reputation and esteem.

UW-Milwaukee offers an online RN to BSN degree program for working registered nurses who have either a diploma or associate’s degree. Students can choose from two convenient options designed for the schedules of working adults: the [email protected], which uses weekly online meetings and faculty-led classes; and the UW-FLEX, a self-paced, competency-based program intended for self-motivated students who need ultimate flexibility. Students who earned their associate’s degree in the Wisconsin Technical College System can transfer more than 60 credits to shorten their BSN completion, and UWM’s low tuition makes the program affordable for nearly everyone.

Cost Per Credit: $337
Accreditation: CCNE


Texas A&M University

Texas A&M University is one of the most productive and accomplished major public research universities in the world, with federal sun, sea, and space grant status and the largest student body in Texas (and, by extension, one of the biggest in the US). TAMU was founded in 1876 as a land-grant institution; the A & M name represents the agriculture and mechanical technology emphasis of the original school, though Texas A&M has grown into a comprehensive university with degrees in all disciplines. With an endowment second only to the University of Michigan among public institution, TAMU is a research leader and ranked in the top public universities by U.S. News & World Report.

Texas A&M offers an online RN to BSN degree completion program for working nurses through the respected College of Nursing. TAMU’s College of Nursing has been named a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing, a distinction that extends to the online RN to BSN. Nurses who have already earned an associate’s degree and passed RN licensure are qualified to apply; coursework is fully online, and taught by the same award-winning faculty as the on-campus nursing programs. Plus, Texas A&M’s incredibly low online tuition rate – one of the lowest in the nation – has earned the Aggies recognition as a best value on a national level.

Cost Per Credit: $132
Accreditation: CCNE


Drexel University

One of the most progressive and innovative universities in American history, Drexel University is a large, private research institution in Philadelphia, PA. Founded in 1891, Drexel was built on the then-radical notion of providing practical, hands-on education in the applied arts and sciences for any qualified student, regardless of gender or background. A major part of that mission, since 1919, has been Drexel’s pioneering cooperative education program, in which students alternate terms in the classroom with terms of full-time employment in their intended field. Drexel’s co-op program has built relationships with industry and government in Philadelphia that would be the envy of any other college, to the benefit of Drexel graduates.

Drexel has also emerged in the 21st century as a model online educator, beginning fully online degrees in 1996 and opening an independent division within the university, Drexel University Online, in 2001. Drexel’s online RN to BSN degree program carries the name and job-market recognition of Drexel, with the convenience of fully online study. With a highly developed online education system, including simulations, hands-on experience, and community outreach, Drexel’s online program offers all the benefits of an on-campus program, plus a generous transfer policy allowing students to transfer as much as 135 credit hours. With tuition guaranteed not to rise over the course of study, and the market reputation of Drexel, graduates will find the online RN to BSN a definitive best value.

Cost Per Credit: $572
Accreditation: CCNE


CUNY School of Professional Studies

The City University of New York – better known as CUNY – is the third-largest university system in the US and the largest concentrated in one urban area. Founded in 1961, CUNY is a unique collection of semi-independent colleges and schools brought together to provide affordable, accessible public higher education to the city of New York. It has succeeded resoundingly, building a highly diverse student body made up of one quarter each of white, black, and Latino students, with international students from more than 200 nations. The CUNY School of Professional Studies was founded in 2003 and dedicated to bringing educational opportunity to working adults and organizations in New York.

The CUNY School of Professional Studies is ranked as one of the top online bachelor’s educators by U.S. News & World Report, including the CUNY online RN to BSN degree program. Because the School of Professional Studies was built on education for working adult and other nontraditional students, the only nursing program is calibrated for the needs of nurses in the field. With a curriculum based on the AACN Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice, the CUNY RN to BSN prepares nurses for leadership positions in acute care and other environments. CUNY’s commitment to accessibility includes some of the lowest tuition rates in the US, adding to CUNY’s best value status. In fact, students in online degree programs pay the New York State tuition rate and do not need to establish residency.

Cost Per Credit: $285
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Missouri at St. Louis

The youngest member of the University of Missouri system, UM St. Louis was founded in 1960 as a junior college, intended to provide an affordable higher education alternative when St. Louis had only two expensive private colleges. The school grew quickly into a full four-year university, and today UMSL has the largest student body of any St. Louis institution. Though it is still a young regional university, UMSL’s reputation has been steadily growing in recent years, with some individual programs – including Criminology and criminal justice, International Business, and Philosophy – finding high rankings in U.S. News & World Report. UMSL’s star has particularly risen as the university has expanded its reach with online degree programs.

Like UMSL itself, the College of Nursing was established to provide opportunity where there was none, and when it began in 1981 nursing was strictly a degree completion program for nurses working in St. Louis’ hospitals. Today the UMSL is one of the most respected nursing schools in the region, with multiple program accreditation and the UMSL online RN to BSN degree program, designed to add a fully-rounded liberal arts foundation to advanced nursing skills. The curriculum is built on a five semester sequence, and any working nurse with a diploma or associate’s degree is eligible to apply.

Cost Per Credit: $452
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Louisiana at Lafayette

The second-largest institution in the University of Louisiana System, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette began its life in 1898 as an industrial institute focused on applied science and technical training. Over the course of the 20th century ULL developed into a comprehensive research institution on its own, reaching the Carnegie Classification’s second-highest designation (Higher Research Activity, formerly R2). With a highly diverse student body and several unique programs (including Francophone Studies, a natural fit for Louisiana), ULL has also become a nationally-recognized source for nursing.

Lafayette’s College of Nursing and Allied Health Professions is one of the most respected in the South, with high employment rates for graduates and CCNE accreditation for bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate programs. The ULL online RN to BSN degree program is built for working nurses, pulling together a 30 credit curriculum that steeps students in scientific research, leadership preparation, and interdisciplinary collaboration. With one of the lowest tuition rates in the region, and a name trusted throughout the Deep South, the University of Lafayette gives nursing graduates faith that their investment will prove a best value.

Cost Per Credit: $355
Accreditation: CCNE


University of St. Francis

A small, private Catholic institution in Joliet, IL, a suburb of Chicago, the University of St. Francis was founded in 1920 by the Congregation of the Third Order of St. Francis of Mary Immaculate, originally as a seminary to train members of the order. Over the years the school opened up to women, then became a coeducational four-year college, until finally reaching university status in 1998 when it merged with the Saint Joseph College of Nursing. As a Catholic liberal arts institution, St. Francis is known for educational excellence and stellar student support, and their nursing program is particularly respected throughout the Chicago area.

The Leach College of Nursing at St. Francis offers an online RN to BSN degree program that builds on St. Francis’ proven track record of quality and marketability, but adding the convenience of fully online courses. One on one guidance and individual attention makes the online RN to BSN an ideal professional preparation, with courses in areas ranging from home health to public health. The St. Francis curriculum covers the present and future of nursing, giving students what they need for career advancement, leadership, or graduate schooling.

Cost Per Credit: $599
Accreditation: CCNE


Ball State University

A large, public research university in Muncie, IN, Ball State University was founded in 1918, when the Ball Corporation’s owners, the Ball Brothers, bought a failed normal school and donated the facilities to the state of Indiana for a new teacher’s college. As the college grew into a university, Ball State also began expanding its research potential. Today, Ball State has a commitment to sustainability in its research and facilities, as well as a long-standing emphasis on adult learning. With online courses going as far back as 1998, and a longer history of distance education, Ball State knows what they’re doing when it comes to online education, and it shows.

Recognized by U.S. News & World Report for their online bachelor’s programs, the School of Nursing at Ball State offers an online RN to BSN program that is noted for both its quality and its flexibility. Students may choose full-time or part-time, and with one-on-one advising and extensive tech support, students can feel confident that they will be able to stay on top of their education. While out-of-state residents will pay an extra fee, Ball State’s in-state tuition is one of the most affordable rates around for a graduate degree. That’s just one of the qualities that makes Ball State’s online RN to BSN degree program a best college value.

Cost Per Credit: $492
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Arkansas

The University of Arkansas is a top-tier, highest research activity-classified public university in Fayetteville, AR. Founded in 1871, UA began its life as an industrial university under the federal land-grant program; like other land-grant institutions, UA first focused on training and education in agriculture and the mechanical sciences, but in time grew into the state’s flagship university, center for research and learning in all fields and disciplines. In the 21st century, UA has put exceptional effort into building one of the largest and most successful online education programs in the nation, ranked by U.S. News & World Report among the best undergraduate and graduate online educators in the nation.

UA’s Mann School of Nursing is one of the most prestigious nursing schools in the nation, as well as the oldest and most trusted in Arkansas, and the UA online RN to BSN degree program has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best nationally. The UA RN-BSN is highly student-centered, with strong student support recognized as a hallmark of the program. Courses are fully online and delivered in an asynchronous format, so students can do their work at their own convenience; one experiential project can be completed at the student’s current workplace or home region. Well-prepared, full-time students can complete the program in as little as 3 semesters, making UA’s online RN to BSN not only a great value, but a quick return on investment.

Cost Per Credit: $284
Accreditation: CCNE


Ohio University

Ohio University, the oldest university in Ohio (and one of the oldest in the US), was founded in 1787 (though it was not approved until 1804). Located in beautiful Athens, OH, one of the best colleges towns in America, OU is a center for research, learning, and culture, and its students are some of the best in the nation, with one of the highest rates of Fulbright, Marshall, Truman, and other prestigious scholarships of any university in the US. Regarded as a Public Ivy, Ohio University has credentials and reputation to spare, giving a degree from Ohio an automatic value on the job market.

The Ohio University online RN to BSN is every bit as excellent as Ohio’s on-campus programs. With eight starting dates throughout the year, and convenient 5-week intensive courses, the RN-BSN program is flexible for any working nurse to complete the program quickly. Ohio’s online BSN is also extremely affordable, at only $240 per credit for Ohio residents and $243 for non-residents. Any prerequisites students need to pick up can be taken online as well. Online facilitators and Success Coaches make sure online students are kept in the know and on track, giving online students some of the support that residential students expect.

Cost Per Credit: $243
Accreditation: CCNE


West Texas A&M University

A mid-sized, regional public university in Canyon, TX (a suburb of Amarillo), West Texas A&M began its life in 1910 as one of the state’s seven normal schools, an early practice-based teacher’s college where students learned to teach by teaching students. In those days, the college’s greatest claim to fame was modernist master Georgia O’Keefe’s stint as head of the art department for two years, but in the following years WTAMU has grown into a selective, impressive research university with a growing national reputation. West Texas A&M has earned acclaim from the Princeton Review as a best value, and from U.S. News & World Report, particularly for their excellent online programs, which now number more than a dozen.

The WTAMU online RN to BSN degree program, offered by their acclaimed College of Nursing and Health Sciences, has been noted by USN&WR as among the best online bachelor’s degrees nationwide. For working nurses who already hold their RN license, the online BSN can be completed in as little as a year, though students can take as long as they need, and coursework is fully online. WTAMU already offers one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas, leading to widespread praise as a best value from ranking agencies, but qualifying in-state residents may apply for the Special Tuition Rebate, which makes the cost of the full online RN to BSN only $6950. That’s a value that few other colleges can match.

Cost Per Credit: $295
Accreditation: CCNE


South Dakota State University

Founded in 1881, South Dakota State University is a land and sun-grant research institution and the largest college in South Dakota. Like other land-grant universities, South Dakota State began as an agriculture and mechanics college, and that history of practical, hands-on learning remains deeply embedded in SDSU’s philosophy and approach. Like colleges in other large, Great Plains states, with spread-out residents and a history of self-reliance, South Dakota State University knows the value of distance education and has built a solid, reliable system of online education for its citizens who can’t conveniently reach campus.

The College of Nursing offers South Dakota State’s online RN to BSN degree program, a fully online course of study available in just about every state. Scheduled for the convenience of working nurses, the program can be completed in 3-5 semesters. General education courses are also offered online for students who need to fulfill requirements, but working nurses who already have their RN license can be admitted directly. At a reasonable rate of $325 per credit hour, regardless of residency, it’s a strong candidate for South Dakota residents and non-residents alike. It’s a sound investment that can pay off significantly in the long run.

Cost Per Credit: $334
Accreditation: CCNE


Sam Houston State University

Founded in 1879, Sam Houston State University had its beginning as the first normal school in Texas, and sits on the site of the oldest continuous college campus west of the Mississippi (previously the site of Austin College, dating back to 1851). Originally a school for public school teacher certification, SHSU grew to a four-year college by 1919, and a century later, Sam Houston State is a major public university more than 20,000 students strong. Sam Houston is best known for their professional programs, including the oldest criminal justice school in the US, and a top-notch College of Health Sciences with an excellent School of Nursing. In the 21st century, SHSU has become a leader in online education, with well over 60 online programs from certificates to doctorates.

The School of Nursing is home to SHSU’s online RN to BSN degree program, designed specifically for working nurses who already hold an unencumbered RN license. The online program is scheduled for convenience, so all coursework is fully online, but students are encouraged to attend an on-campus orientation and two optional on-campus visits each semester, to get to know their instructors and cohort in the real world. Students can work full-time or part-time, and students who have completed their nursing associate’s degree, but not their licensure, may be accepted provisionally. SHSU nurses have a great success rate, with an average 89% graduation rate, 84% first-time NCLEX pass rate, and 83% job placement rate.

Cost Per Credit: $216
Accreditation: CCNE


Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis

A unique shared campus, home to programs from both Indiana University and Purdue University, Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis is an urban, public research university. IUPUI was founded in 1969 when the administrators of both colleges realized their extension campuses in Indianapolis could accomplish more in collaboration than separately. As an urban institution, IUPUI is committed to providing educational opportunities to underserved populations, including online programs available to students anywhere in the US. IUPUI has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as an important up-and-coming institution.

The IUPUI RN to BSN Degree Completion program comes from Indiana University’s top-tier School of Nursing – the largest in the nation – and makes use of resources and faculty from all eight UI School of Nursing campuses to deliver a well-rounded, intensive nursing education. Indiana residents benefit from a lower tuition rate, a very affordable $203 per credit hour, but even non-residents pay only $297, a reasonable markup compared to many institutions’ out-of-state tuition. Considering the wealth of knowledge that the IU School of Nursing brings to the program, and the affordability, IUPUI’s online RN to BSN is simply a great college value.

Cost Per Credit: $367
Accreditation: CCNE


New England Institute of Technology

The New England Institute of Technology – commonly called New England Tech – is a small, private technical university dedicated to practical, applied science, career, and professional degree programs. Founded in 1940, New England Tech has spent more than 75 years developing their tried-and-true balance of hands-on training and technical analysis in more than 50 programs from associate’s to master’s degree levels. NEIT has also developed a healthy and still-growing slate of fully online and hybrid degree programs that have earned U.S. News & World Report recognition as a top online bachelor’s educator – #8 nationally, and #1 in New England.

NEIT’s online RN to BSN degree program was the first in Rhode Island, and remains one of the most trusted in New England. The fully-online program is scheduled in 10-week courses, with 4 semesters each year to move working nurses through the program swiftly, even when taking courses part-time. The curriculum is based on the National League for Nursing Core Competencies for consistently and stability, and instructors are highly trained, educated practitioners. With online courses designed for interaction and fun, the online RN to BSN program is intended to build the kind of community spirit that an on-campus programs strives for, with the flexibility of online. At an incredibly affordable tuition rate, New England Tech can’t be called anything but a value college.

Cost Per Credit: $230
Accreditation: ACEN


Colorado Technical University

Founded in 1965 as a small, for-profit technical school – that met for its first classes in a former roller skating rink! – Colorado Technical University originated in the mission of two retired military officers to provide a way for veterans returning to civilian life to educate themselves for trades and careers. Over the next 50 years, Colorado Tech would grow into one of the most respected and highly-ranked for-profit institutions in the world, focusing on bringing practical, market-ready education to nontraditional students. With their online school beginning in 1995, Colorado Tech was in front of the trends, and today more than 90% of the school’s 21,000 students are online.

Colorado Tech has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as a top online bachelor’s institution, including the Colorado Tech online RN to BSN degree program. The CCNE-accredited, fully online degree is one of the most convenient and flexible in the nation, with 8 different start times throughout the year and generous transfer credit acceptance. For working nurses who have their prerequisites in order (and a current RN license), the whole degree completion program may take as little as 9 months, making for an incredibly short turnaround time for that investment to pay off.

Cost Per Credit: $325
Accreditation: CCNE


Fort Hays State University

Founded in 1902, Fort Hays State was intended to act as an agricultural college before being changed to a normal school at the last minute; it was, thus, probably the only teacher’s college in the US to have its own experimental dairy farm. That kind of practicality sums up education in Kansas, though – doing what needs to be done to provide for the educational needs of people, and not getting stuck in a box when there’s work to be done. Today Fort Hays State is the third-largest public university in Kansas, known for its dedication to career and professional education, and for the tremendous outreach of its online programs.

When FHSU spun its Virtual College from the Continuing Education Department into its own division, they were beginning a new chapter in the life of Fort Hays State. Today the Virtual College offers more than 60 fully online degree, from certificates and associate’s to a Doctor of Nursing Practice. The Fort Hays State online RN to BSN degree is one of the top programs of its kind in the Midwest, with flexible, fully online courses and CCNE accreditation. Students learn everything they need for leadership and advancement in their careers, and Fort Hays State’s low tuition makes for a solid higher ed investment.

Cost Per Credit: $207
Accreditation: CCNE


University of North Florida

The University of North Florida is a large, public regional institution founded in 1969. Originally a senior college, offering only degree-completion programs for juniors and seniors who had transferred from junior or community colleges, UNF expanded into a full 4-year college in 1984. Since that time, UNF has steadily grown in size and reputation, earning recognition as a top regional college from the Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report, as well as regularly ranking as a best value for its combination of quality and affordability. UNF also designates its most productive and impressive programs as Flagship Programs, the first of which was the School of Nursing.

The UNF online RN to BSN degree programs is one of the school’s highlights, a fully-online, largely self-scheduled and self-directed program that requires at least 30 credit hours to be taken with UNF and accepts transfer credits smoothly. Students are expected to arrange experiential credit hours in their own community, as well as attending functions like conferences and meetings of professional nursing organizations, but all coursework is fully online. UNF’s reasonable tuition rate makes the program accessible for working nurses across Florida and the south, ensuring that the online RN to BSN will be a best value.

Cost Per Credit: $285
Accreditation: CCNE


Fitchburg State University

Fitchburg State University is a small, public institution in Massachusetts. Founded in 1894, Fitchburg State had its start as a normal school, providing teacher’s education for central Massachusetts, and became a full 4-year teacher’s college forty years later. After many years of expansion and adding programs, Fitchburg State finally reached university status in 2010. Its close-knit urban campus gives FSU a strong emphasis on practical, socially-responsible programs like nursing, communications, business, and, of course, education, drawing on over a century of expertise.

Fitchburg State’s online RN to BSN degree program has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top online bachelor’s programs in the nation. Drawing from FSU’s excellent nursing faculty, the online RN to BSN program is fully online, designed for working nurses, and focused on social responsibility, diversity and cultural awareness, and holistic nursing. Fitchburg State keeps tuition at one of the lowest rates in New England, making it one of the finest bargains in the nation for working nurses to complete their BSN.

Cost Per Credit: $133
Accreditation: CCNE


California University of Pennsylvania

California University of Pennsylvania dates back to 1854, when the newly-created town of California, PA (named in a surge of national enthusiasm for the Gold Rush and all things California) opened an academy for local education from elementary to college courses. In its history, Cal U has been a normal school, teacher’s college, and state undergraduate college, gradually developing to meet the needs of the time and the people of southeastern Pennsylvania. Today, Cal U is a mid-sized public university that has been acclaimed for its online programs.

The Cal U online RN to BSN degree program has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report among the best online bachelor’s programs nationwide. With an emphasis on the needs of working nurses, Cal U uses a unique scheduling method of one 16-week course and two 8-week courses per semester, a structure that allows students to finish their degree in as little as three semesters (depending on the number of prerequisites required). Classes are designed around a cohort format, so students take the same sequences together to develop collaborative skills and a sense of community. Cal U’s tuition rate for online courses is one of the most affordable in the northeast, making it one of the best deals in higher education.

Cost Per Credit: $308
Accreditation: CCNE


Northwestern College

Founded in 1882, Northwestern College is a Christian liberal arts college affiliated with the Reformed Church in America. Highly ranked on a range of metrics including academic rigor, affordability, graduate outcomes and students’ volunteerism, Northwestern is committed to providing a faith-based, liberal arts education in the context of community among learners on campus and online. The college is known for excellence in the health and natural sciences and offers more than 80 undergraduate programs as well as graduate degrees and programs for adult students.

The Northwestern College online RN to BSN degree program is designed to accommodate the careers and other responsibilities of working nurses. Students take just one 8-week course at a time, completing the program in two years or less. The program is characterized by a high degree of personal attention from the college’s nurse educators. Northwestern offers cost-competitive tuition and financial aid opportunities. Courses start in January, May and August, making the online RN to BSN degree program both flexible and convenient.

Cost Per Credit: $325
Accreditation: CCNE


Lamar University

Lamar University is a large, public research university in Beaumont, on Texas’ Gulf Coast. Part of the Texas State University System, Lamar was founded in 1923 as a junior college, then a revolutionary new movement in career and professional education. Following WWII, Lamar began an intensive focus on engineering and technology, growing into one of the most prestigious public STEM institutions in the Gulf Coast region. In the 21st century Lamar has grown beyond regional status, ranked by U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review as a national university, with many individual programs ranked in the top 50 nationwide.

The Lamar online RN to BSN degree program is built for growth and change – designed to help working nurses through the program quickly and into leadership positions in their career, and designed to provide the bedrock of knowledge and adaptability for smart nurses to change with the field. Along with health assessment, evidence-based analysis and practice, and community health, Lamar students learn leadership and management in preparation for higher-level positions in hospitals and other clinical settings. At one of the best online tuition rates in the nation, Lamar is quickly becoming a name that opens doors all over the US.

Cost Per Credit: $308
Accreditation: CCNE


Georgia College & State University

A small, public liberal arts college in central Georgia, Georgia College & State University had its beginnings in 1889 as a vocational school for young women, combining a normal school (the precursor of the teacher’s college) and industrial school (what would now be called a tech or career school). The college became coed in 1967, and in 1995 the University System of Georgia designated Georgia College & State University as the official public liberal arts university of Georgia, retaining the “College” name as a link to the historic institution that includes the iconic Flannery O’Connor among its alumni.

The Georgia College online RN to BSN degree program is intended for working nurses who already have an associate’s degree or nursing diploma and a current RN license and want to complete their bachelor’s degree. The curriculum combines Georgia College’s traditional liberal arts mission with the most current technical and professional expertise of the nursing discipline for a thorough, fully-rounded education that builds on the liberal arts foundation. Courses are fully online, with optional on-campus orientation meetings or other activities for students who want to get to know their cohort and professors face-to-face. GCSU is exceedingly affordable and one of the most trusted names in Georgia, making the online BSN a solid investment.

Cost Per Credit: $289
Accreditation: CCNE


Pace University

Pace University is an elite, business and professional studies institution in Manhattan. Founded in 1906 by Homer and Charles Pace as a coeducational business school, Pace spent the first half of the 20th century establishing branches across the US until centering on its original home in New York City, making the most of the Manhattan location for developing world-class programs and attracting the most ambitious students. Primarily known for the Lubin School of Business, Pace has also found success and renown with the Actors’ Studio MFA program and the Lienhard School of Nursing, one of the top programs in the nation.

Pace has also made Adult & Continuing Education a priority, reaching out to New Yorkers and beyond with online programs like the iPace RN to BSN online degree completion program. Thanks to its location at the center of the world’s busiest city, Pace’s nursing programs know what New York hospitals and clinics need, and tailor their curriculum to the most current, evidence-based, practical education possible. The online RN to BSN is for working, licensed RNs who have completed an associate’s degree or diploma program, and may be one of the best deals in higher education anyone is likely to find in New York City.

Cost Per Credit: $555
Accreditation: CCNE


University of Alabama at Birmingham

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is a large, public research institution in Alabama’s biggest city. Originally founded as an extension campus of the flagship U of A in Tuscaloosa, UAB became a fully independent university in 1969, and rapidly grew to become Alabama’s online R1 research university (the highest research activity category in the Carnegie Classification system). In addition to top-tier professional and academic programs across the board, UAB is also home to the UAB Health System, the largest and most important academic hospital system in Alabama, and one of the biggest in the nation.

The UAB School of Nursing offers the RN Mobility Program, a degree completion program that allows licensed registered nurses who have a diploma or associate’s degree to complete their BSN or MSN online. That program includes the UAB online RN to BSN degree, an exceptionally well-designed program open to students from just about any location. To qualify, students need an active RN license in whatever state they plan to perform their clinical practicum. Except for a 2-day intensive orientation at the beginning of the program, there is no need to come to campus, and with a full-time schedule the BSN degree can be completed in only two semesters. It’s a fast, flexible option to increase Alabama’s supply of top-notch nurses.

Cost Per Credit: $746
Accreditation: CCNE


Eastern Kentucky University

A large, regional institution in Richmond, KY, Eastern Kentucky University was founded in 1906 as a normal school on the site of a previous, defunct college. By 1966, six decades later, the teacher’s college had reached university status, and gradually worked to add master’s and doctorate degrees. In recent years, EKU has made outreach and adult education a priority, leading to a new level of recognition. EKU has been ranked a top regional university for the South by U.S. News & World Report, and earned particular attention for their online education, including top 20 online nursing programs.

The EKU RN to BSN online degree program has been designed for maximum flexibility, affordability, and convenience. With 8 week sessions and flexible start times, students can work as much or as little as they need while keeping their current nursing jobs. Clinical projects can be arranged wherever students live, so there is never any need to travel to EKU’s campus. At $400 per credit hour, EKU is already a serious bargain, but even more so with their accelerated courses – taking two courses at a time each 8 week session, students could finish the BSN in only 12 months. That’s a fast turnaround time into a degree with a higher marketability and excellent prospects.

Cost Per Credit: $400
Accreditation: CCNE


Georgia Southern University

Georgia Southern University is a large, public institution in the University System of Georgia. Founded in 1906, Georgia Southern is a land-grant university that was originally dedicated to agriculture and mechanical technology, educating farmers in rural southern Georgia in new methods and technologies. In 1924, the agricultural school was redefined as a normal school, starting the long process to a teacher’s college, state college, and finally university. Georgia Southern’s emphasis on growth and innovation is beginning to pay off with national attention in the 21st century, including recognition from Kiplinger’s as a national best value and upgraded status from regional to national in U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review’s official rankings.

The GSU online RN-BSN degree program comes from one of the top nursing schools in Georgia, a U.S. News & World Report-ranked nursing school. The online program is taught by the same qualified instructors as the on-campus program, with all of the resources and expertise available. Courses at GSU use both synchronous and asynchronous methods; while most coursework is asynchronous, some courses may use live discussion sessions to develop connections and relationships between students and faculty. For one of the lowest tuition rates in the South, Georgia Southern provides a top-tier nursing experience in a convenient, well-developed online program.

Cost Per Credit: $204
Accreditation: CCNE


Southeast Missouri State University

A large, public regional university on the mighty Mississippi, Southeast Missouri State University was founded in 1873 as a normal school, educating Missouri’s school teachers with the most current, experiential methods. Over the next century, SEMO developed into a full university, with a full slate of programs in every discipline, from the humanities and liberal arts to STEM and professional studies. While SEMO retains a strong connection to teacher education, its reputation in recent years has been strengthened by professional and career programs, outreach to adult and nontraditional students, and online degree programs. SEMO has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top public regional universities in the Midwest.

SEMO’s online RN to BSN degree program is a straightforward, well-developed plan of action for working registered nurses to finish their bachelor’s degrees quickly. Nursing courses are fully online, and for students who have completed all of the required foundational courses, only 6 nursing courses are needed to finish out the whole degree. Students can also arrange the field experience portion of the program in their own area for greater convenience, with no need to ever visit campus. Scholarships are available, and SEMO’s already affordable tuition makes the online RN to BSN program an unbelievable value even without a scholarship.

Cost Per Credit: $265
Accreditation: CCNE


McKendree University

A private, small liberal arts college affiliated with the United Methodist Church, McKendree University is located in Lebanon, IL, a suburb in the Greater St. Louis metropolitan region. Founded in 1829, McKendree is the oldest college in the state of Illinois, rooted in place and deeply tied to the region in learning and service. McKendree began its life as a seminary, but beginning in the 1990s embarked on a long and successful effort to increase enrollment, grow reputation, and raise capital to make McKendree a nationally-recognized liberal arts university. It has paid dividends, with a greatly expanded graduate student body, and recognition as a top regional college in the Midwest from U.S. News & World Report.

The McKendree online RN to BSN degree program is a point of pride for the university, developed by McKendree’s respected School of Nursing & Health Professions. U.S. News has ranked McKendree a top online bachelor’s institution, and that excellence shows in the online BSN, which combines the kind of support students might expect from an on-campus program with the most current theory and practice in the field. Short, 8 week courses allow students to complete their program in as little as a year and a half, with practicum assignments arranged in the students’ home areas. It’s an affordable, excellent program designed to turn today’s nurses into tomorrow’s healthcare leaders.

Cost Per Credit: $365
Accreditation: CCNE


Sacred Heart University

Sacred Heart University is a relatively young private, Catholic institution in Fairfield, CT. Founded in 1963, Sacred Heart has grown to become the second-largest Catholic university in New England (the much older Boston College remains the leader), known for its educational rigor and excellence, research, and experiential education. As a comprehensive university, Sacred Heart offers degrees from bachelor’s to doctorate, primarily in useful, market-ready areas like criminal justice, business, and healthcare, including programs from the top-ranked College of Nursing. Sacred Heart has been ranked one of the top regional universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report.

The College of Nursing’s online programs, in turn, have been been highly ranked by U.S. News as well. For working nurses who want to increase their marketability and earn promotion in their careers, the Sacred Heart online RN to BSN degree program offers a flexible, convenient way to finish the bachelor’s degree. With a focus on applied theory and cultural competency, the online RN to BSN is designed to prepare students for nurse leadership and management, and has everything a graduate will need to apply for graduate education as well. With the quality of a private Catholic education, and a cost on par with many public universities, Sacred Heart has the right idea.

Cost Per Credit: $560
Accreditation: CCNE


SUNY Delhi

One of the two technology colleges in the State University of New York system, SUNY Delhi was founded in 1913 as an agriculture school, educating farmers in rural New York State about more modern technology and methods. Not until the 1960s did SUNY Delhi begin expanding into a full college, but today Delhi is riding high, with expansion and construction planned for the next decade and beyond. Delhi has made its reputation by focusing on the immediate, applicable needs of the people of New York, with associate’s and bachelor’s degrees designed for community college transfers and working adults throughout the Hudson River region, as well as New York City. Delhi’s diverse student body and dedication to student support have made it U.S. News & World Report top-ranked regional institution for the North.

Delhi has also earned high rankings for their excellent online bachelor’s programs, including SUNY Delhi’s online RN to BSN degree. Courses are fully online with practicum experiences scheduled and administered the student’s home area, for the most flexibility possible. Because Delhi is specifically dedicated to transfer and community college students, their degree completion programs are very generous, and students can usually transfer 60 to 80 credits toward the full 120 of a bachelor’s degree. Many upper-level liberal arts courses are also available online for electives or prerequisites. Delhi is a college for the people, and their exceptionally generous tuition rate is another sign of their commitment to the people of New York.

Cost Per Credit: $270
Accreditation: ACEN


Loyola University Chicago

Dating back to 1870, Loyola University Chicago is one of the largest and most prestigious Catholic institutions in the US, founded in the Jesuit tradition of academic rigor and service. Loyola grew up alongside Chicago, helping to form the foundations of the city’s culture and learning, and educating many business, government, and medical leaders of the city. Loyola is especially known for the Loyola University Medical Center, one of the most respected medical campuses in the world, and home of the Niehoff School of Nursing, widely acknowledged as one of the nation’s greatest nursing schools.

The Loyola online RN to BSN degree program is a challenging, demanding program for working nurses who intend to build their careers as professional nurse leaders. With 6-8 week sessions, and fully online courses, students can potentially complete the program in as little as three semesters, getting onto the job market sooner than most other bachelor’s degrees. Loyola also has partnerships with several community colleges in the region for convenient transfer. Graduates from the Niehoff School are typically employed within two months, with active, competitive recruitment from the many healthcare providers of Chicago and Illinois.

Cost Per Credit: $751
Accreditation: CCNE


Bowling Green State University

A large, public residential institution, Bowling Green State University originated in 1910 as a normal school, providing cutting-edge education for teachers in the rural northwest region around Toledo, OH. In recent years, BGSU has grown into a research university with high activity, as measured by the Carnegie Classification, and has earned copious praise from U.S. News & World Report and other ranking agencies. Bowling Green State has also made huge strides in online education; of 17,000 students, only 6500 are traditional, residential students.

BGSU’s online RN to BSN degree program is designed for working RNs with an associate’s or diploma to complete their studies; seven upper-level nursing courses are required for completion of the degree, along with any prerequisites students need to complete (however, the last 30 credits must be taken at Bowling Green). Student choose from one of four schedule options, depending on the course loads they want to take. The first three options allow the student to complete the program in 2, 3, or 4 semesters, while the last takes 7 semesters. Graduates can expect active recruitment from hospitals and facilities all over Ohio, making Bowling Green State a solid investment in a future career.

Cost Per Credit: $390
Accreditation: CCNE


California Baptist University

Founded in 1950, California Baptist University has needed just over half a century to become one of the most prominent Christian institutions in the US, with ranking from U.S. News & World Report as one of the top regional universities in the West. While it began as a traditional liberal arts college, CBU has made professional education its mission in the 21st century, developing its business school into one of the best in California and expanding to engineering, healthcare, and other STEM-related fields. The CBU College of Nursing is widely considered a top California program, with an emphasis on ethics, service, and ministry.

The CBU online RN to BSN degree program is designed for current RN holders to complete their undergraduate education in a Christian, bible-centered environment. CBU nursing is dedicated to the “human becoming” theory, emphasizing quality of life as an individual, personal assessment, and placing empathy, compassion, and kindness alongside excellent, ethical practice. Students are prepared for a variety of clinical settings, with critical thinking and health assessment at the core of an adaptable, versatile degree.

Cost Per Credit: $547
Accreditation: CCNE


Ferris State University

A large, comprehensive public university in Michigan, Ferris State University was founded in 1884 by Nathaniel Ferris – not the inventor of the Ferris Wheel, but an educational reformer who advocated hands-on, experiential learning. Ferris State began its life as an industrial school, dedicated to technology, mechanics, and applied science, but in the years after WWII, with post-war development in full swing, the state of Michigan acquired the school and began building it into a major public university focused on professional studies, STEM, and health, including significant pharmacy and nursing programs that have become essential to Michigan’s healthcare system.

The Ferris State online RN to BSN degree program emphasizes nurse leadership and management, preparing working RNs who already have an associate’s or diploma for higher-level positions in the field. Courses focus on advanced theory and practice, but also put collaboration, teamwork and team-building, and decision-making in priority. Students develop their critical thinking and analytical skills to make life-saving choices under pressure, and Ferris State graduates often go on to further, master’s level schooling. A reasonable tuition rate keeps the Ferris State education a value.

Cost Per Credit: $403
Accreditation: ACEN


Southern New Hampshire University

When it was founded in 1932 as a small accounting school, no one could have foreseen what the future would hold for Southern New Hampshire University. A private, independent university between Manchester and Hooksett, NH, has a little over 3000 students on campus. What makes SNHU extraordinary, however, is the other 80,000 students enrolled online. Southern New Hampshire has repeatedly been named one of the most innovative institutions in the world; by jumping into online education in 1995, before most other reputable universities took it seriously, SNHU has come out on top as an online educator.

SNHU’s online RN to BSN degree completion program is a natural for the university, drawing from its two decades of top-tier online education to develop a truly excellent program. This 10-course completion curriculum is based on the AACN’s 11 nursing competencies and the Institute of Medicine’s “Future of Nursing” report. With a focus on evidence-based care and responsible use of technology, SNHU’s online RN to BSN is prime for any working nurse who wants to take the next step in full competency and authority. It’s also priced right for nurses everywhere, making it a nation-wide college value.

Cost Per Credit: $320
Accreditation: CCNE


East Carolina University

Founded in 1907 as a teacher training school, East Carolina University has long been the essential educational institution for eastern North Carolina, a largely rural, frequently disadvantaged region. The third-largest institution in the University of North Carolina system, ECU is designated a federal Innovation and Economic Prosperity Campus, a reflection of the crucial role ECU plays in the educational and professional life of the state. With a medical school, dental school, school of allied health, and school of nursing, ECU is also a key component of North Carolina’s healthcare system, and the leader in North Carolina nursing education, producing more nurses than any other institution in the Carolinas.

For nurses in North Carolina looking to advance to the BSN and gain a higher level of pay and responsibility, ECU has been the premier choice for a long time, and that tradition continues with the ECU online RN to BSN degree program. Some courses are offered in a 7-week block format, so students can cover four courses a semester while only focusing on two at a time. While all coursework is presented online, students are responsible for their own clinical experience in the final semester. Applicants should have a current North Carolina RN license, and in-state residents get a much better tuition rate, only $134 per credit hour, as opposed to $648 for non-residents.

Cost Per Credit: $687
Accreditation: CCNE


Linfield College

A small, private liberal arts college in the northwestern corner of Oregon, Linfield College was founded by the Oregon Baptist Educational Society in 1849, bringing Christian education to an area that was still very much wilderness. While Linfield retains its historic affiliation with the American Baptist Church, the college today is independent and non-denominational, with no particular religious focus. Linfield has long been ranked among the top regional colleges in the west by U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review, as high as #1 for many years before being reclassified at the national, rather than regional, level.

In 1982, Linfield partnered with the Good Samaritan Hospital & Medical Center to start the Linfield-Good Samaritan School of Nursing in Portland, OR. The School of Nursing, along with the Online and Continuing Education Program, offers the Linfield online RN to BSN degree program that is taught by faculty members who are not only expert researchers and practitioners, but trained specifically in online education. Coming from one of the most renowned and oldest nursing schools in the Pacific Northwest, the Linfield online RN to BSN is one of the best possible values for entry into leadership and service in the future of nursing.

Cost Per Credit: $480
Accreditation: CCNE


Robert Morris University

Robert Morris University is a small, private university centered on business, healthcare, and other professional studies. Founded in 1921, RMU was originally an accountant’s training school in the Pittsburgh suburb of Moon Township, but steadily grew over the course of the 20th century. Today RMU offers more than 80 bachelor’s and master’s degrees, many of which are available fully online, and has long been ranked one of the top regional colleges in the North, and one of the best online educators anywhere. RMU was recently elevated to the top tier national universities in U.S. News rankings.

RMU’s online RN to BSN degree program has been ranked one of the top online bachelor’s programs in the nation, designed especially for the working nurse who wants to move into higher-level leadership positions within the nursing profession. Online courses are taught by the same experienced, expert teachers and practitioners to prepare students for the future of nursing, applying theory, practice, and technology to the current and upcoming state of nursing. The RMU name is highly respected throughout Pennsylvania and the northeast, making the online RN to BSN a job market advantage far and wide.

Cost Per Credit: $725
Accreditation: CCNE


Illinois State University

The oldest public university in Illinois, Illinois State University was founded in 1857 as a normal school (hence the town’s name, Normal). While the university is still highly respected for its teacher education programs, Illinois State has expanded well beyond that heritage, particularly in technology and professional programs. Ranked by Washington Monthly as a Best Bang for the Buck college, Illinois State is also recognized in the top 100 public universities by U.S. News & World Report. The Mennonite College of Nursing, in particular, is one of the most prestigious in the Midwest, with U.S. News & World Report recognition for its online programs.

The Illinois State online RN-BSN program offers a part-time or full-time plan of study, perfect for working students. Applicants have to meet the same standards as many other online RN-BSN programs, but ISU has developed partnerships with several ADN programs in the area, the Pathways Program, to simplify and ensure transfer. With a history of over 95 years of providing nursing education, nearly 30 years of the RN to BSN program, and more than a dozen years of online degree programs, Illinois State’s online BSN is one of the best values in the Midwest.

Cost Per Credit: $741
Accreditation: CCNE

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