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Arkansas State University

Learn About An Online RN to BSN Program

Nursing professionals have long discussed the various paths to a nursing career. Today, as calls increase to make the Bachelor of Science in Nursing the standard degree in the field of nursing, those discussions have intensified. Most healthcare professionals recognize that nurses who complete a RN to BSN program acquire skills and knowledge that exceed standard associate degree training, and the differences between these two paths into nursing have measurable effects on patient care. The following material details the benefits of the BSN degree over the ADN standard.

The Changing Healthcare Environment

An aging population and recent healthcare legislation are both putting more pressure on the U.S. healthcare system, in turn demanding more from medical professionals. For nurses, this means that those who want to advance in the field need leadership and management skills in addition to nursing skills.

In a good online RN to BSN program, students can expect coursework that covers topics like nursing management, community nursing and cultural competence in the health professional. Courses like these introduce students to the principles of leadership while offering the understanding nurses need to work effectively in a range of communities and cultural settings.

Many nurses, after spending several years handling general nursing duties, begin to look toward management positions as a way to further their careers and reduce the physically taxing aspects of day-to-day nursing. The Arkansas State University online RN to BSN curriculum prepares nurses for transitions like these.

Better Communication Skills

While ADN-prepared nurses have the fundamental skills necessary to perform traditional nursing duties, many hospitals today want their nurses to hold a BSN so they can also work as teachers and coordinators. To meet these needs, online RN to BSN programs include coursework to develop students’ communication skills. Students develop stronger written and verbal communication and graduate prepared for management and leadership positions.

Improved Patient Outcomes

An online RN to BSN program also offers nurses a broader understanding of the role of nursing in healthcare. Studies consistently show that patients do far better in hospitals with higher percentages of BSNs, likely due to their better overall understanding of pathophysiology and evidence-based practices. Further, BSN coursework that focuses on specialized areas such as chronic illnesses lead to better patient care.

Working nurses considering an online RN to BSN program can expect courses that go into greater depth and cover broader treatment areas than ADN programs while also preparing students for the modern managerial needs of today’s demanding healthcare field.

Learn more about the A-State online RN to BSN program.


The Impact of Education on Nursing Practice. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Keibach, J. (2015, June 1). ADN vs. BSN – The Big Debate. Retrieved from

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