If you’re wondering what to look for in an R.N. to B.S.N. degree program, look no further. An R.N. to B.S.N. is a degree completion program that allows registered nurses (R.N.s) to build on their prior nursing education and earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree. While there are hundreds of R.N. to B.S.N. degree programs to choose from, you can make sure you select a high-quality program by looking at factors such as college rankings, accreditation, affordability and time to graduation. 

Rankings and Reputation

One of the first things to look for in an R.N. to B.S.N. degree program is the school’s and programs reputation. Are the college as a whole and its nursing program in particular known for providing a thorough education and training great nurses, or does its name raise eyebrows among prospective employers?

Looking at how the school fares in rankings from trusted publications like USA Today, U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review can help you get a feel for the quality of the education you would receive there as well as how prospective employers would view your degree. Not every publication ranks undergraduate nursing or R.N. to B.S.N. degree programs specifically, so find out what you can about the reputation of the school as a whole and about its nursing program.


The next thing to look for in an R.N. to B.S.N. degree program is accreditation. First of all, the college or university you choose should have accreditation from one of the six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Otherwise, it might not meet minimum standards of quality – and it’s possible that the credits you earn there wouldn’t transfer to another school and that prospective employers and professional organizations may not recognize your degree as legitimate.

The nursing program, specifically, should be accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).


Earning your bachelor’s degree is an investment in your future, but you still don’t want to break the bank just to further your education. Affordability is another important thing to look for in an R.N. to B.S.N. degree program. You might be surprised at how many schools offer a great nursing education for a great value. In fact, at some of the top affordable online programs, tuition is just a few thousand dollars per semester.

Speed of Degree Completion

One of the biggest benefits of an R.N. to B.S.N. program is the chance to earn your degree fast. Find out how long it will take you to graduate and what options are available to accelerate your education. Some students who are eager to get their degree can cut down the time to graduate to as little as one year by taking accelerated courses and applying the maximum number of prior learning credits.

Choosing which one of the hundreds of R.N. to B.S.N. degree programs offered across the U.S. can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Knowing what to look for in an R.N. to B.S.N. degree program can help you make a smart choice about which program is right for you.

Related resource:

Top 30 Most Affordable Online RN to BSN Programs