10 Best Bachelor Of Science In Nursing [BSN] Programs

BSN programs are perhaps the most popular of all nursing studies. Referred to as “bachelor of science in nursing,” they offer training and qualifications for Registered Nurses (RNs).

These programs are the original and lengthy form of accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) programs.

Therefore, because ABSN allows students to get their degrees faster, they cost much more than traditional BSN programs.

Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing Science (BNS)

 There is no better time to pursue a career in nursing than now.

With the COVID-19 pandemic that has overstretched the global health system; the world over, the demand for nurses has steadily increased.

Besides, great scholarship opportunities are available to those seeking to study nursing science at the degree level.

The United States, one of the countries severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, is encouraging highly motivated and brilliant prospective student nurses to seek admission into public and private universities.

Deciding which university to apply to and ascertaining admissions requirements could be daunting to an average student. This blog post is intended to clear your doubts and help you make an informed decision on your nursing career.

The six fastest-growing jobs of the decade that pay over $100,000 by CNBC placed nurse practitioners first with a $111,680 median pay—followed by information security analysts.

Now that you have decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Nursing Science (BNS), this blog will give you all the necessary information to realize your dream.

You will understand the general and specific requirements or prerequisites for admission, the duration of the course, the average cost of study, and the list of top universities in the US for BSN.

General and Specific Requirements and Prerequisites for Admission into BSN

Some institutions set a threshold for acceptable high school GPAs. It is also OK to have post-secondary qualifications such as CNA or LPN.

Essentially keep in mind that prerequisites in each nursing school are uniquely determined. You could contact the admissions office to ascertain the requirements when in doubt.

Apart from having high or post-secondary school academic qualifications,  some schools still require that you take entrance or general exams such as SAT or ACT, specially set up for those seeking to pursue a degree in BNS.

The entrance exam aims to test your qualitative and quantitative abilities.

Your score would help the admissions committee determine your ability to cope with rigorous academic activities in nursing schools.

Students seeking to pursue BNS in the US have an enabling and inviting environment in the US to make the dream a reality.

As each institution sets a good passing mark. Apart from academic requirements for admission, some universities demand that applicants submit a motivation letter as one of the required documents for access.

The motivation letter should indicate your passion for the nursing profession. For instance, you could state that you decided to pursue a career in nursing because you were a health prefect at secondary school.

Also, in your motivation letter, you might consider including your envisaged career life in the next five years.

Another vital document required for application is a reference letter from your mentor or former teacher. Some universities only request one recommendation letter, while others demand two letters.

Another critical aspect of the application process is the payment of processing fees. This is usually less than $100. However, in rare cases, some universities waive application fees.

BSN Program Duration

A Bachelor’s degree in Nursing Science is four (4) years in the US.

In the final year, you must submit an extended essay on any topic of your choice in Nursing Science as part of the requirements for a bachelor’s degree.

BSN Program Tuition

The tuition varies depending on the classification of the university in question. Top universities are usually expensive. However, there are funding opportunities in the form of scholarships or loans.

It costs about $10,000 per academic year for a BSN program. Some affordable universities charge as low as $4,000 per academic year.

Acceptance Rate

Just as tuition varies according to ratings of universities, so also does the acceptance rate.

For instance, at  South Dakota State University, the acceptance rate is 92.4%, and at Illinois State University, the acceptance rate is 89.2%. Saint Louis University’s acceptance rate is as low as 57.5%.

In comparison, the acceptance rate at Loyola University is 67.9%.

NCLEX Pass Rate

Before trained nurses could be eligible to apply for licensure in the US, they must have passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

The NCLEX competence assessment test is organized by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN). The exam ascertains candidates’ competence to work in healthcare or hospital facilities.

Generally, the pass rate is higher among US-trained nursing candidates than their foreign-trained counterparts. Also, the pass rate is distributed by states and by individual universities.

The 2021 NCLEX aggregated pass rate for all candidates is 68.85%. The assessment is based on passes or fails rather than on percentage ranking.

Work Expectations

Whether through traditional or accelerated programs, every BSN degree holder has an exciting and rewarding future ahead of them as long as the range of work and salary is concerned.

They earn much and are qualified to take on fundamental and technical healthcare roles in any institution they find themselves in. They might also be tasked with supervising less-skilled professionals.

Top BSN Nursing Programs in the USA

As of 2021, based on data from close to 1,000 Bachelor’s degrees in Nursing Science (BSN) are available in the United States.

The US is expected to set up more BSN programs in response to the shortage of nursing staff since the outbreak of COVID-19. Below are the top nursing degree programs for 2022/2023 admission:

  • Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College, School of Nursing and Health Science

Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College is a public institution established in 1908. It is located in Georgia. The campus is situated in a  rural setting. Currently, the student population is about 4,000.

The School offers BSN and has one of the highest NCLEX RN pass rates and about 100% employment rate for its nursing graduates.

To be considered for the BSN program, you must pass the SAT and pay $20 as an application fee.  For more information, visit the School’s website.

  • Ball State University, College, and Department of Nursing

Ball State University is a public research university in Muncie, Indiana, with two satellite facilities in Fishers and Indianapolis. It was established in 1918. As of fall 2021, it has a student population of close to 22,000.

The College of Nursing has an impressive passage rate on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN), with an average of 95% NCLEX-RN licensure exam first-time pass rate.

Application information is available on the school’s website.

  • Colorado Christian University, School of Nursing and Health Professions

Colorado Christian University (CCU) is a private Christian university in Lakewood, Colorado. It was founded in 1914 as the Denver Bible Institute. It has about 9,000 students and is situated in a suburban setting.

Colorado Christian University’s Nursing programs are top-notch. The student nurses are trained to see nursing as a scientific discipline and a sacred calling.

Application details are available online.

  • The University of South Alabama, College of Nursing

 The University of South Alabama (USA) is a public research university in Mobile, Alabama. It was established in 1963. It has a total student population of about 15,000. Its campus is situated in a suburban setting.

This College of Nursing has generous scholarship opportunities for international students. However, the acceptance rate is low, and detailed information about the application process is available on their website.

  • The Troy University School of Nursing

Troy University is a public university in Troy, Alabama, United States. It was founded in 1887. It has about 18,000 students and is situated in a small college town.

The Troy University School of Nursing is one of the US’ best schools to acquire nursing training. Though the SAT is required for international students, it has a reputation for a high NCLEX Pass Rate.

More information about the application is available online.

  • The University of Illinois, College of Nursing

The University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) is a public research university in Chicago, Illinois. It was established in 1859, 163 years ago, with a total student population of 34,199, with 22,279 undergraduate students.

It prioritizes diversity and inclusion.

The University of Illinois, College of Nursing, was founded in 1951; the UIC College of Nursing is an A-list institution for nursing education training. The college operates six campuses in both Northern and Central Illinois.

The UIC College of Nursing is a diverse intellectual community of scholars, practitioners, and staff dedicated to a mission to transform health, healthcare, and policy.

UIC College of Nursing is committed to advancing nursing leadership by preparing students to meet the challenges of providing high-quality care to diverse populations cost-effectively and generating new knowledge through innovative, relevant research.

More than 1,500 bachelor’s degree and graduate students are learning to apply science to solutions at its six Illinois campuses.

Admission into BSN at UIC College of Nursing is competitive; hence applicants must be prepared to submit additional documents apart from the ones stated above. For instance, you’ll be prompted to answer the following essay questions that require 1,000 words divided into four individual questions on the application portal.

See the questions below.

The UIC College of Nursing’s mission is to transform health, healthcare, and policy through knowledge generation and translation, and education of future leaders from diverse backgrounds.

Our vision is to be a preeminent leader in advancing global health and nursing. Please comment on how you can contribute to the UIC mission and vision as a student and alum. (max. 250 words)

What does it mean to commit to diversity? How would you develop and apply your commitment to diversity at UIC? (max. 250 words)

Describe a stressful or challenging situation you have experienced and how you dealt with it. Looking back, would you do anything differently? Please explain. (max. 250 words)

Many nursing students find being a full-time nursing student demanding and rigorous. How will you balance your family, work, and other commitments with full-time nursing study? (max. 250 words).

There are robust funding opportunities for international students. You can get more information about the application process here.

The University of Pennsylvania is a private Ivy League research university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was established in 1740.

As of Fall 2019, it has a total student population of 22,432, with 10,019 undergraduates. Its main campus is situated in an urban setting.

  • The Penn Nursing, University of Pennsylvania

According to a recent ranking by QS World University, Penn Nursing is the world’s best nursing school.

Penn Nursing is best known for expanding the frontiers of knowledge in the nursing profession, from research education to practice and policy.

At Penn Nursing, the mission is to significantly impact health by advancing science, promoting equity, demonstrating practice excellence, and preparing leaders in the discipline of nursing.

Armed with renowned faculty and exceptional students, Penn Nursing conducts innovative, collaborative, and impactful research. It is immersed in state-of-the-science clinical, global, and community-based settings to advance learning and practice.

The application process is highly competitive, but you need not be discouraged. All you have to do is brace up and be ready to compete for an offer of admission.

Penn Nursing believes in using hands-on, mentored education to transform what happens in the classroom into what happens in the clinic and beyond.

The Application Fee is $75. However, a fee waiver is possible for those who qualify.

Because of the competitive nature of admission into Penn Nursing, the early decision program is binding. If you are admitted, you are obligated to accept the offer of admission.

By mid-December, applicants will receive one of three possible outcomes from their early decision application.  As part of our Early Decision program, you are committed to accepting our offer of admission.

It would help to withdraw any active applications to other colleges/universities. If you want to try Penn Nursing, you will find relevant application information on the program’s website.

  • The University of Michigan, The University of Michigan School of Nursing

The University of Michigan is a public research university in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It is one of the top 25 universities in the world. It has a 15:1 student/faculty ratio.

It was founded in 1817. As of 2021, it has a total student population of 48,090, with 31,329 undergraduates. It is situated in an urban setting with an acceptance rate of 26%, and the average cost after aid is $15,000.

The University of Michigan, School of Nursing has culturally diverse students who show a genuine, demonstrated interest in contributing to the changing world of health care.

The University of Michigan School of Nursing, has robust financial aid opportunities. The School recognizes that navigating financial aid can be challenging.

It encourages students to explore financial aid, including university-level, private, and U-M School of Nursing options, to maximize available financial support.

The U-M Office of Financial Aid (OFA) is the central source of information on significant sources of university-level financial aid, including scholarships, loans, grants, and work-study employment programs.

This office should be every student’s first point of contact when considering financing their Michigan education.

If you are considering applying to the Michigan School of Nursing, further information about the admission process is available online.

  • The University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies, University of Miami. 

The University of Miami is a private research university in Coral Gables, Florida, in the United States. As of 2020, the university enrolled approximately 18,000 students, with 11,000 undergraduates.

It was established in 1925; 96 years ago, its campus was in a small urban city.

As international students are heading to the US to pursue a degree in Nursing Science, the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies has become one of the top destination institutions.

About 2,000 international students from more than 110 countries come to the University of Miami each academic year for further education.

University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies has impressive national rankings. For instance, its NCLEX Passing Rate is 95%.

Its diverse academic environment would be suitable for Nigerians. In addition, there are comprehensive provisions for financial aid for international students.

Financial aid is granted based on academic performance and individual need considerations.

You will find information about the program if you consider enrolling for BNS at the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies for the 2022/2023 academic year.

Earning a BSN Degree

Gaining entry into a BSN degree-awarding program is relatively easy.

Unlike ABSN programs, where you would need first to earn a Bachelor’s, this one only requires you to possess a school diploma certification.

Having this certification, prospective BSN students will need to look out for other requirements by the school of their choice, including, for example, a letter of interest, an essay on a chosen subject, and their cooperation in background security checks and biometric registrations.

A typical BSN degree program will last four years. Students will be introduced to general prerequisite courses such as … Next, they will learn introductory nursing courses and then study core courses.

Even though BSN degree programs don’t progress as fast as ABSN, they usually still have online-study options. This will allow students to catch up with family life, business, or work during their studies.

Later parts of these programs may also involve simulation lab experience giving students a chance to dramatize diagnosis and treatment procedures on dummies.

Following this would then be clinical practice. Just like the simulations, in-person participation is required for this. Again, students will be supervised by a trained professional.

After passing the assessment for knowledge and character, BSN students will have one last hurdle at the end of their degree programs. This is the National Council Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

According to the Institute of International Education (IIE), the number of international students studying in the USA is rising.

The COVID-19 pandemic has further heightened the demand for nurses, as some retired staff nurses must be incentivized to work during the height of the pandemic crisis.

All nursing institutions discussed above are not ranked. Instead, they are randomly selected so that individual students with varied economic and academic performances can find the best fit.

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