RN Programs in Virginia with Course Descriptions

Virginia has about 60 colleges that offer registered nursing programs. Learn about the programs, tuition info and program options for ten of the largest schools in the state to make an informed education decision.

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Essential Information

In Virginia, students interested in registered nurse (RN) training can earn an associate's or a bachelor's degree. In addition to traditional degree programs, registered nursing transition programs are offered for licensed practical nurses (LPN) who want to become RNs and registered nurses who want to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Additionally, those who have earned a bachelor's degree in another area can enroll in accelerated RN programs. Depending on the school, some courses may be available online.


George Mason University

George Mason University is located in Fairfax and offers three types of registered nursing programs. The traditional BSN program is 120 credits and features coursework in nursing fundamentals, health promotion, mental health nursing, community health nursing, nursing research, nursing technologies and pharmacology. The accelerated BSN degree can be earned in 12 months, and students are required to complete 47 credits of upper division coursework. The RN-to-BSN (RN-BSN) program requires that students complete at least 30 credits at George Mason; however, a total of 120 credits are needed to earn the degree.

James Madison University

Situated in Harrisonburg, James Madison University has both a traditional BSN degree and an RN-BSN program. Students enrolled in the traditional BSN program are required to earn 120 credits, including 64 nursing credits. Coursework combines academic courses with clinical requirements.

The RN-BSN program can be completed on a part-time or full-time basis. Students can receive up to 77 credits for earning an associate's degree and working as a registered nurse. The program requires that students complete 13 credits of general education requirements and 30 credits of nursing courses.

J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College

J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College sits in Richmond and offers a traditional associate's degree in nursing and LPN-to-RN (LPN-RN) program. The traditional associate's degree is 69 credits, and students take courses in health assessment, newborn nursing, nursing principles and concepts, mental health nursing and surgical nursing.

The LPN-RN program can be completed part-time or full-time. A weekend and evening program is also offered. In addition to general education requirements and nursing courses, students must complete an LPN transition course.

Liberty University

At Liberty University in Lynchburg, students can pursue a traditional BSN degree or complete the RN-BSN program. The traditional BSN program requires that students complete a minimum of 134 credits. Nursing courses cover topics in nursing leadership and management, adult health care, population health, nursing research and mental health.

The RN-BSN program is offered online, and students must earn at least 30 credits at Liberty in order to graduate.

Northern Virginia Community College

Northern Virginia Community College offers a traditional associate's degree in nursing and LPN-RN program at its Medical Campus in Springfield. Students in the traditional program must complete 69 credits and take courses in nursing management, nursing dimensions, nursing principles, psychiatric nursing and pharmacology.

The LPN-RN program requires that students complete nursing transition courses before taking nursing coursework.

Old Dominion University

Old Dominion University is located in Norfolk and offers three paths to earn a BSN degree. Students enrolled in the traditional BSN program must complete 120-126 credits and take courses in community health nursing, clinical management, nursing leadership and management, nursing care of infants and children, adult health nursing and mental health problems.

The accelerated BSN program offers students an opportunity to earn an AAS in Nursing at a partner college and complete additional requirements online. While the RN-BSN program has the same requirements as the traditional program, students can transfer credits in from their previously earned diploma or associate's degree.

Thomas Nelson Community College

Located in Hampton, Thomas Nelson Community College offers a traditional associate's degree in nursing and an LPN-RN program. The traditional program is 69 credits, and students take courses in nutrition, diet therapy, nursing skills and fundamentals, mental health nursing and medical-surgical nursing.

The LPN-RN program can be completed in four semesters and includes the same nursing courses and credits as the traditional program.

Tidewater Community College

At Tidewater Community College's Portsmouth campus, students can complete a traditional associate's degree in nursing or an LPN-RN program. The traditional nursing associate's degree can be completed in five semesters and includes courses in essential nursing concepts, nursing organization and management, psychiatric nursing, medical-surgical nursing and pharmacology.

LPNs who have graduated within the past five years from an approved Virginia school can enroll in the LPN-RN articulation track, while LPNs with several years of work experience but who do not qualify for the articulation track, may enroll in the advanced placement track.

University of Virginia

The University of Virginia sits in Charlottesville and has BSN and RN-BSN programs. In addition to general education requirements and nursing courses, students in the traditional program are able to gain clinical experience at the University of Virginia Medical Center and other local facilities.

The RN-BSN program requires that students complete at least 30 credits at the university and participate in one practicum.

Virginia Commonwealth University

Located in Richmond, students at Virginia Commonwealth University can pursue traditional BSN, accelerated BSN and RN-BSN programs. Students in the traditional program begin taking nursing courses during their sophomore year. Courses cover topics in nursing for adults, nursing leadership and management, community health nursing, nursing science, nursing of women and nursing of children.

The accelerated program can be completed in five semesters and requires 66 credits. The RN-BSN program consists of 53 credits of general education requirements and 67 credits of nursing courses.

Career Requirements

In order to become a registered nurse in Virginia, individuals must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Check out the table below for statistics about the aforementioned community colleges and universities in Virginia offering RN training.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type and Setting RN Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)
George Mason University 4-year, public; large suburb BSN,
Accelerated BSN,
RN to BSN
$10,952 in-state,
$31,598 out-of-state*
James Madison University 4-year, public; small city BSN,
RN to BSN
$10,018 in-state,
$25,152 out-of-state*
J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College 2-year, public; large suburb Associate of Applied Science in Nursing,
LPN to RN
$4,653 in-state,
$10,491 out-of-state*
Liberty University 4-year, private, not-for-profit; small city BSN,
RN to BSN
$20,109*
Northern Virginia Community College 2-year, public; large suburb Associate of Applied Science in Nursing,
LPN to RN
$5,138 in-state,
$11,055 out-of-state*
Old Dominion University 4-year, public; midsize city BSN,
Accelerated BSN,
RN to BSN
$9,480 in-state,
$26,220 out-of-state*
Thomas Nelson Community College 2-year, public; midsize city Associate of Applied Science in Nursing,
LPN to RN
$4,416 in-state,
$10,254 out-of-state*
Tidewater Community College 2-year, public; midsize city Associate of Applied Science in Nursing,
LPN to RN
$5,171 in-state,
$11,009 out-of-state*
University of Virginia 4-year, public; small city BSN,
RN to BSN
$15,192 in-state,
$44,365 out-of-state*
Virginia Commonwealth University 4-year, public; midsize city BSN,
Accelerated BSN,
RN to BSN
$12,772 in-state,
$31,464 out-of-state*

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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