As more and more seniors reach retirement age, there is a rapidly growing need for nurses throughout the country. Many people with Bachelor's degrees are choosing to go back to school to earn their Bachelor's degree in nursing. If you've been considering the same thing, you may want to look into the many accelerated BSN programs that are available to you. These programs often allow you to complete your BSN within 12 to 18 months.
Delaware has several schools that offer accelerated or fast track Bachelor's of Science in Nursing programs. The featured schools below offer classes online, allowing you to do your coursework when it fits into your schedule. You can learn more about these programs by requesting information from the schools that interest you.
The University of Delaware also offers a traditional ground based Accelerated BSN program, which may be of interest. Keep in mind that the more schools you contact, the more you will learn about how you can complete your BSN while still utilizing the college degree you already have. You may find that a distance education program that offers local clinical sites can bring the flexibility you desire, coupled with the nursing knowledge you need.
Accelerated BSN Program Curriculum in Delaware
Due to the accelerated format of fast track BSN programs, it's important to have all of your prerequisites completed as soon as possible. You likely have already met many of the general education requirements while you were earning your first degree. Nursing programs, however, are heavy on science, so you will likely need to have completed human biology, anatomy, and several other science courses in order to earn your nursing degree.
Accelerated BSN programs in Delaware start out with basic nursing courses. You'll quickly learn all that you would learn in an Associate's degree in nursing. These courses include courses in anatomy, pharmacology, and introductory nursing assessment and care planning.
After completing introductory nursing courses, you will be taking courses that are intended to expand the scope of your professional nursing abilities. Baccalaureate prepared nurses are taught nursing management and leadership skills, as well as tools to effectively navigate care systems, influence policy making, and advocate for both patients and the profession.
While course names may vary from program to program, you can expect to take the following classes in an Accelerated BSN program:
- Pediatric Nursing
- Nursing communication and Leadership
- Family Based Nursing
- Nursing in the Community
These courses provide you with the theoretical information you will then apply during the next phase of your nursing education—clinical practice. Clinical practice takes you to a local health care facility, where you integrate the techniques you have learned in class within a supervised patient care environment. You will have the opportunity to experience several different areas of nursing, which may help you figure out where you want to work after graduation.
Career Considerations in Delaware
There are many large nursing employers in Delaware. After graduation, many new graduates start working in a hospital. However, you can also work in a nursing home, community clinic, specialists' clinic, or travel nursing clinic. Some of the largest nursing employers in Delaware are Healix Inc., Bayada Home Health, Pinnacle Rehab and Nursing Center, and Community Regional Medical.
Through the next several years, the need for educated nurses is expected to continue growing. O*Net estimates a 24% increase in available nursing jobs between 2010 and 2020. With a Bachelor's degree in nursing, you'll be poised to apply for nursing jobs in many different fields, which can influence both your job opportunities and earning potential. The salary range for RNs in Delaware ranges from $52,200 to $92,500 (O*Net, 2012) annually, demonstrating the value of nurses in the state.
Licensing Considerations in Delaware
While there are two ways to earn a nursing license in Delaware—examination and endorsement—new graduates of a BSN program primarily earn their degree by examination. To begin the process, your nursing school usually sends your diploma and official transcript to the Delaware Board of Nursing. Many schools also offer NCLEX prep classes, to aid you.
You will then sit for the NCLEX-RN exam, which is the national licensing examination for Registered Nurses. After successfully passing the NCLEX and obtaining your nursing license, you will be required to renew it every two years, by completing 30 hours of continuing education and renewing with the State Board.
You can also gain valuable professional resources and network with other nurses in Delaware by joining the Delaware Nurses Association. They offer specialized continuing education courses in areas like suturing and communicable diseases. When you join the association, you also gain advocacy resources and align yourself with those interested in influencing health care policy and the future of nursing.
To learn more, please submit a request for information to those schools below, and featured above, which offer the programs you are looking for. And remember, the more you know, the better able you will be to make a decision that is best for you and your nursing education.