Associate of Science in Nursing Degree Online with Course Overview

Essential Information

Associate of Science in Nursing, also called Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), online programs feature a flexible format and allow students to develop their nursing skills and prepare for the national certification exam. Some programs may only offer a few courses online, while other programs may be offered in a hybrid format where all courses can be completed online but in-person clinicals are still required.

Students considering a hybrid program may be required to have completed specific prerequisite courses, such as biology and chemistry labs. Some online programs may be specifically designed for current licensed practical nurses (LPNs) or paramedics who wish to become registered nurses (RNs). ADN programs can be completed in about 16-24 months (after prerequisites are completed).

ADN Online Course Overview

Online courses cover topics such as research methodology, nursing science, informatics, communication and management. Students are also required to complete simulation labs on-campus or clinical training at area health care facilities. Online students may be able to complete these during the evening or weekends.


  • Research in nursing practice
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Nursing theory
  • Improving nursing practice
  • Global health
  • Pathophysiology
  • IV therapy
  • Human growth and development

Career Information

Online ADN programs train students for professional nursing careers through skill development in contemporary health problems, assessment, interpersonal and therapeutic communication skills, nursing role behaviors and teamwork.

Continuing Education Information

Graduates of these online programs are prepared for bachelor's-level nursing studies and, for those who do not hold current RN licensure, the National Council Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

Although some nursing associate's degree programs offer fully online coursework, students should expect to complete clinical and laboratory work in-person. Some online programs are intended for current healthcare professionals, like LPNs or paramedics, who want to change careers into registered nursing.

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