Accelerated BSN Programs at Illinois Nursing Schools

State Nursing Board: Illinois Department of Professional Regulation

State Nurses Association: Illinois Nurses Association

State Hospital Association: Illinois Hospital Association

If you currently have a non-nursing degree and are looking to become a Registered Nurse, you have found a great resource. We at have compiled a listing of all of the second degree accelerated Bachelor's in Nursing programs in the state of Illinois. You can request information from any of the schools on our page, saving you time and energy as you embark upon your new education and career path. The more you know, the better able you will be to select the BSN program that is right for you.

Students who are accepted into Illinois accelerated BSN programs typically consist of cohorts ranging from 25 to 75 people. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, educators prefer second degree nursing students (2012) as they are often more self directed and highly motivated learners. For this reason, many accelerated BSN students do well with online classes, which require a degree of self discipline, as well as task and time management. The good news is, these characteristics are also highly valued in nursing professionals, who are often required to balance multiple patients and tasks at one time.

As you investigate the possibilities for earning your BSN, consider all of your options, thoroughly reviewing all aspects of the programs, in order to make a sound decision.

Highlights of the Accelerated BSN programs in Illinois

The accelerated BSN programs in Illinois are fast-paced and comprehensive, preparing students for entry level positions as RNs in a wide array of healthcare settings. These programs are specifically designed for students who have a bachelor's degree in another discipline. Developed to build on previous knowledge and skills, credits from undergraduate coursework in general subjects like sociology, psychology, math, biology and English are accepted and applied to the new BSN degree program.

The coursework in an accelerated BSN program is focused on topics that apply to the nursing profession. Depending on the school you attend, it takes anywhere from 10 to 18 months to complete the program, offering a relatively rapid transition to those seeking a new career in nursing.

In order to be accepted into a second degree BSN program in Illinois, candidates must meet specific criteria. Students must have a good GPA in their undergraduate work (generally above 2.5) as a demonstration of their strong academic skills and must already have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college. Written recommendations from previous supervisors or professors are also required. Before candidates can begin with an accelerated BSN program, each school will require completion of specific prerequisites. Specific prerequisites typically include biology, anatomy and physiology, psychology, computer science and algebra.

Course Study in an Illinois Accelerated BSN Program

The curriculum of an Illinois second degree BSN program is comprised of approximately 60 credit hours in specialized nursing courses and 100 hours of field practicums. Common nursing classes cover topics, such as:

  • Nursing Leadership
  • Pharmacology I and II
  • Theory, Principles and Practice of Nursing
  • Nursing Statistics
  • Healthcare Law
  • Nursing Assessment and Care Planning

The accelerated BSN curriculum is nearly identical to the traditional four-year BSN program, depending upon which credit hours you have already completed. All other nursing specific requirements are the same. All students are required to successfully complete assigned practicums, including online students. Once students have completed the full program, they can then apply to take the required NCLEX-RN exam for state licensure. The accelerated BSN programs are comprehensive, and most accelerated BSN nursing students pass the first time around (AACN, 2012). There are also workshops and webinars to further prepare students for the NCLEX.

Future Employment, Career Path and Salary for Illinois RNs

The career path for Registered Nurses in Illinois is filled with many exciting opportunities. The state's 124,000 RNs (O*net, 2013) are employed in a wide array of healthcare organizations, including home healthcare, health consulting firms, insurance companies, medical centers, nursing homes, hospitals, hospice, private doctors' offices and many more.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, 2012), Illinois nurses earn an average of $65,000 annually, working in a profession with a growth rate expected to reach 28 percent by 2020. RNs can also increase their earning power by attaining certification in specialized areas of nursing, such as neonatal, mental health and geriatric nursing. Attaining a nursing degree with an accelerated BSN program is an educational path that can help you secure a bright future.

With the ever increasing complexity of healthcare environments, the need for clinical experience and continuing education after licensure have been clearly identified. As a result, the Illinois Nursing Board requires all RNs to complete 20 hours of approved continuing education every two years in order to be eleigible for license renewal.

Now is a great time to explore your options for earning your second Bachelor's degree in Nursing. You can access our list of all schools in the state from this page, and are encouraged to obtain information from a variety of schools on the list. The more you know, the more likely you are to succeed in both your education, and your career. If you have additional questions, please contact us at:

Programs from Illinois Schools

Listed below are all of the nationally accredited Accelerated BSN programs with campus locations in Illinois.

Online programs may not be available in all areas

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Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing (Quincy, IL)
Program Name: Advanced Placement Track
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Bradley University (Peoria, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated BSN
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Illinois State University (Normal, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated BSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Lewis University - Online (Romeoville, IL)
Program Name: Bachelors to BSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Loyola University Chicago (Chicago, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Methodist College of Nursing (Peoria, IL)
Program Name: Second Degree Accelerated BSN
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Olivet Nazarene University (Bourbonnais, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated Bachelors of Science in Nursing (online)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Resurrection University (Chicago, IL)
Program Name: Fast Track BSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville (Edwardsville, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated BSN (ABS)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Trinity College of Nursing & Health Sciences (Rock Island, IL)
Program Name: Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Accreditation: CCNE accredited