Copyright
 

Online RN Programs | Find Registered Nurse Certification From Home

Get info about online programs in Registered Nursing. Read about program requirements, course topics and degree levels, and check out career and continuing education options.

View popular schools

Earning Registered Nurse Certification

Most states require individuals to have completed a training program in nursing in order to qualify for registered nurse (RN) licensure. The fastest route to the RN qualification is a 2-year associate's degree in nursing. Many colleges and universities also offer 4-year bachelor's degree programs in nursing that can lead to RN licensure. Students who already have associate's degrees in nursing and RN licensure may be interested in pursuing an accelerated bachelor's degree program in order to qualify for graduate study in nursing.

After completing an associate's or bachelor's degree, prospective nurses must take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Upon successful completion of the exam, individuals can apply to their home states' nursing boards in order to become locally licensed RNs. Most states also require applicants to pass a criminal background check.

Online Availability Hybrid
Majors with Registered Nursing Courses Associate's of Science (or Art), Bachelor's of Science
Degree Levels Available Associate's degree, Bachelor's degree
In-Person Requirements In class instruction

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Clinical Nursing
  • Critical Care Nursing
  • Direct-Entry Midwifery - LM, CPM
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse Training
  • Mental Health Nursing
  • Neonatal Nursing
  • Nurse Anesthetist
  • Nurse Assistant or Patient Care Assistant
  • Nurse Midwife
  • Nurse Practitioner or Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Nursing Administration
  • Nursing for Adults and Seniors
  • Nursing Science
  • Occupational Health Nursing
  • Operating Room and Surgical Nursing
  • Pediatric Nursing
  • Public Health Nurse or Community Nurse
  • Registered Nurse

RN Programs

In order to meet state education requirements, prospective RNs must complete hands-on training in a classroom or clinical environment. As a result, it isn't possible to qualify for RN licensure exclusively through distance education.

However, many colleges and universities offer blended nursing degree programs that combine online and on-campus instruction. These are typically available at the associate's degree level for students who have no previous experience in nursing and at the bachelor's degree level for students who already have RN licenses.

Associate's Degree

Entry-level students can pursue online RN licensure in a blended learning environment through associate's degree programs in nursing. Depending on the institution, these programs may lead to an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or an Associate in Science in Nursing (ASN), but degrees are basically equivalent.

Rather than offering some courses all online and some courses all on-campus, many associate's degree programs in nursing blend individual classes. Students may complete some of the coursework for a particular class online and the rest of it in a face-to-face environment, reducing the overall number of scheduled class hours. Clinical experiences, however, must still be completed entirely on-campus or at an associated health care facility.

The online portion of blended nursing courses typically includes case studies, online tutorials and related study materials. Most colleges use Web-based learning management systems, such as ANGEL to deliver online content. Sample course subjects may include these:

Course Topics

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Nursing process
  • Pathophysiology

RN-to-BSN Degree

Students who already have RN certification may be interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Students may also be able to accelerate their time to degree completion by applying credits and prerequisites from an associate's degree program. The bachelor's degree can help RNs advance in their careers or qualify for graduate study programs required for advanced practice nursing.

Many RN-to-BSN programs are offered in a blended online and on-campus format. A typical blended program generally offers about 50% of the course content online. This may include some general education courses offered totally online and some nursing courses that include both on-campus and online instruction. As with the associate's degree programs, clinical experiences for the BSN degree must be completed on-campus or at an associated health care facility.

Sample upper-division nursing courses in an RN-to-BSN program include these:

Course Topics

  • Leadership and management for RNs
  • Theory of clinical practice
  • Community nursing
Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Executive Leader Specialization
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path
    • Accelerated BSN to MSN
    • MS in Nursing - Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
    • MS in Nursing
    • Master of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Specialization
    • Master of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Family Nurse Practitioner Specialization
    • Master of Healthcare Administration
    • Bachelors of Science in Nursing - RN to BSN
    • BS in Health Science
    • BS in Healthcare Administration
    • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Certificate
    • Family Nurse Practitioner Graduate Certificate
    • Nurse Educator Graduate Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
    • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Health Care Administration
    • MBA and MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems (dual degree)
    • MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems
    • M.S. in Nursing: Nursing Education
    • MBA: Health Systems Management
    • MS in Health Care Administration
    • MS in Nursing: Nursing Education
    • BS in Nursing (Registered Nurse - R.N. to BSN)
    • BS in Health Care Administration
    • BS in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
    • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Bachelors of Science in Nursing- RN to BSN

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner (MSN - FNP)
    • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) in Nursing Administration
    • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) in Nursing Educaiton
    • RN to BSN

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Science in Nursing: Undecided
    • Master of Science in Nursing: Nurse Administrator
    • Master of Science in Nursing: Clinical Nurse Leader
    • Master of Science in Nursing: Clinical Nurse Leader Certificate
    • Master of Science in Nursing: Nurse Educator

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    • M.S. in Nursing (MSN) - Nurse Leadership & Management
    • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership - Healthcare Management
    • Master of Business Administration - Healthcare Management
    • M.S. in Nursing (MSN) - Nurse Educator
    • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN)
    • B.S. in Professional Studies - Nursing Home Administration

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • RN to BSN

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice - Advanced Practice Nurse
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice - Executive Nursing Leadership
    • MBA - Healthcare Administration
    • Master of Science in Management - Healthcare Administration

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Bachelor of Science in Nursing

    What is your highest level of education completed?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?