If your professional journey has led you to the pursuit of a nursing degree, Massachusetts provides premiere accelerated nursing programs for those who have a bachelor's in a non-nursing field. For accomplishing your goal successfully, ensure that you research the many options available for second degree BSN programs. If you desire to continue working while attending a degree program, online schools provide the flexibility of learning at your convenience and reducing the amount of travel time from your busy schedule.
Earning Your Second Degree BSN
According to the study conducted by the Institute of Medicine in 2011, nurses with BSNs significantly outperformed their associate degree counterparts with better patient outcomes. Since that report, many states have begun legislation to make BSNs mandatory.
Although Massachusetts has not made a BSN absolute, most premiere hospitals and other healthcare facilities have shown current trends in exclusively hiring RNs with BSNs as instituted in their policies. As reported in Nurse.com, hospitals are not waiting for the legislation to sanction their practice of hiring RNs with BSNs, and have enacted their own criteria. As a non-nursing degree holder, you likely already have many of the initial credits needed for earning your Bachelor's in Nursing easily.
A second degree ABSN program is defined by a degree that provides students with credit for prior general education, science studies and a curriculum that builds on nursing knowledge and preparation for the RN licensure examination. You may take transitional courses of study that take less classroom study time and provide an in-depth understanding of nursing assessment, diagnosis and patient treatment according to status and condition. Although study time may be as demanding as usual, accelerated courses are usually shorter in length and less time is required to graduate.
Second Career Nurses Bring Life Experiences to Nursing
As stated in the Honor Society of Nursing, nurses who choose nursing as a second career bring rich and valuable experiences to the healthcare realm. Mature and wise, the second career nurse brings motivation, academic excellence and a wealth of professional experience into their nursing practice. Nursing educators know this, and look forward to teaching second degree nursing students how to become caring, compassionate nurses.
Accelerated Bachelor's to BSN Curriculum
Transitional programs from a non-nursing degree to BSN in Massachusetts are designed to provide basic and advanced knowledge in nursing theories, research and the use of evidence-based practice. As the nurse's role is defined in the course curriculum, students are provided with advanced critical thinking skills that are based on patient care techniques, nursing knowledge and scientific studies. Areas of study include:
- Health in Adults and Children
- Disease Prevention
- Health and Wellness Promotion
An accelerated program in Massachusetts allows nurses to be creative, practical and may provide several options for completing their degree. Online classes that provide the learner with an option of completing class work at home is a valuable resource for busy students. Students use innovative strategies to incorporate required coursework into their schedule such as:
- State-approved online classes that can be completed at leisure and may not require login time
- Clinical practicum experiences that may be completed with an approved mentor in your area or location
- Attend flexible classes in schools that allow students to check in at random or study for proctored exams
The schools that are featured on this page offer the online and distance education options noted above. We have taken the time to compile this listing, so you are able to simply request informational materials, instead of spending your valuable time searching for schools. You are encouraged to submit requests to any or all of the schools on the list, so you may be able to make the best decision regarding which accelerated Bachelor's in Nursing program is right for you.
Classes in your curriculum may include the following:
- Advanced Psychology and Human Development
- Advanced Nursing Research in Practice
- Nursing Management of Complex Health Issues
- Foundations of Nursing Informatics
- Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning
Length of Study and Preparation
Your accelerated second degree BSN program in Massachusetts typically requires 16 to 20 months of course completion. You will also be required to perform a 200 to 300 hour clinical practicum in your final year at a local hospital for real-world experience with actual patients that will likely be accomplished under the supervision of an RN instructor.
Opportunities for RNs with BSNs
Salaries for Registered Nurses in Massachusetts continue to rise with the demands of an aging population and new healthcare access for millions of Americans. According to Forbes Magazine (2011), nursing has a bright future despite healthcare reform. Median nursing salaries in Massachusetts are reported at $79,500 annually (O*net, 2013), and nursing is projected asone of the fastest growing professions through 2018.
Opportunities for nurses with BSNs include the following:
- Pediatric or Children's Hospitals
- Medical/Surgical Areas of Care in Hospitals
- Legal and Law Professions in Medical Area
- Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Centers
- Mental Health Facilities
- National and International Travel Assignments
Nurses are in high demand in Massachusetts and healthcare facilities are scampering to fill the vacancies that increase each year. According to Massachusetts.Gov, the nursing shortage has increasingly worsened since 2011. RNs are exceedingly needed in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and other areas of care, making now a great time to pursue your RN.
Thank you for taking the time to submit your requests for information to the schools in our database. You will likely receive information regarding the schools you are interested in in a few weeks, and will then be able to focus on choosing a school and preparing your admissions application. For more information about applying to nursing school, check out our resource pages, or visit the Massachusetts Student Nurses Association.