Due to the high demand for registered nurses and competitive salary of the position (O*net, 2012), many students are looking into second degree BSN programs in New Jersey. There may be limited spaces available and waiting lists, simply because there are too few nursing faculty in place across the country to meet the demand for students (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2012).
Beginning the process of choosing a New Jersey nursing program for students with a previous non-nursing degree is easy. We at BestNursingDegree.com have already done the leg work for you, searching for all accredited programs available in your state. We've provided a complete list of all accredited programs. All you need to do is follow the links for each school to request information. It's that simple!
To increase your chances of being admitted in a timely manner, it may help to research and apply to multiple schools. To increase your options further, you may consider one of the online accelerated BSN programs. With an online program, you can complete assignments and course study at times that work well with your schedule, while receiving nursing instruction from an accredited school.
A Synopsis of the Accelerated BSN Program in New Jersey
The accelerated BSN program in New Jersey is an innovative opportunity for college graduates in other majors to transition into entry level nursing practice in just 12 to 15 months. It also prepares students to take the National Council of Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). It is a vigorous program, and full-time study is required. According to the New Jersey Nursing Board, once licensed, RNs are required to complete 30 hours of continuing professional education every two years.
The requirements for acceptance into a New Jersey accelerated Bachelor's of Science in Nursing program include having a Bachelor's degree from an accredited university or college. Some New Jersey schools also require applicants to score a minimum of 80 percent on the standardized Health Education Systems Exam (HESI). Acceptance into a second degree BSN program also requires the completion of prerequisite classes. Typical prerequisite classes include anatomy and physiology, developmental psychology and statistics. Other general admission requirements into the accelerated BSN program may include written recommendations from previous professors and a written essay.
Curriculum of New Jersey Accelerated BSN Programs
The curriculum of an accelerated BSN program usually entails 60 to 64 credits of coursework in specialized nursing subjects. It follows the same curriculum as a traditional BSN program but at a quicker pace. In addition to lectures, students learn nursing skills in state-of-the art simulation labs. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for practice in a wide range of clinical settings. Students are challenged to examine the environmental context and cultural context in which illness and wellness occur. In addition, students gain strong scientific knowledge and a holistic perspective on the professional nurse’s role in promoting the health of communities, families and individuals. Common nursing subjects include:
- Healthcare Law and Ethics
- Pharmacology in Nursing Practice
- Nursing Information and Technology
- Fundamentals of Nursing Practice
- Community and Population Based Nursing
- Nursing Leadership
Along with completing coursework, students are required to complete a clinical preceptorship. This clinical experience can range from 100 to 200 hours. Students have the opportunity to apply learned skills and knowledge while working alongside a professional nurse. Online students are also required to complete a practicum. Accredited online programs often have arrangements with local healthcare organizations to ensure placement in your own locale.
One aspect of obtaining your Bachelor's Degree in Nursing, as opposed to an Associate's Degree or Diploma, is the amount of high level leadership, case management, and community based educational opportunities you will receive. The BSN is increasingly viewed as the preferred entrance route into Registered Nursing, and may soon be legislated as the only acceptable route (Institute of Medicine, 2011). Earning your second degree BSN can position you at the forefront of the nursing profession, and should provide you with the clinical tools you need to care for patients safely, effectively and holistically.
Career Outlook in New Jersey
Like many other states, the career outlook for RNs in New Jersey is positive. According to information from the New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development on O*net (2012), the need for nurses is expected to grow by 11% through 2020, which would result in almost 10,000 new RN jobs in the state. Some figures, compiled by the New Jersey Nursing Initiative reveal that even now, there are more nursing jobs than nurses to fill them in the state. As of 2012, there is a 17% shortfall of RNs, which is anticipated to grow to over 40,000 unfilled RN jobs by 2020 (NJNI, 2013). What this means for you, is that by choosing to enter the profession of nursing, you are helping to reduce the nursing shortage and simultaneously entering a strong job sector within the healthcare industry.
New Jersey RNs have a wide range of healthcare settings to work in, including medical centers, specialized units in hospitals, assisted living facilities, hospice, mental health and home healthcare. Nurses in New Jersey enjoy a median annual salary of $75,900, which is considerably higher than median salaries nationally (O*net 2012). New Jersey is a state that can benefit greatly from more students entering nursing school, which is the first step to reducing the gap between the state's supply and demand for nurses. Going back to school for your Bachelor's of Science in Nursing in New Jersey appears to be a solid plan, and we would like to help. You can find all of the accredited programs on this page, which is your first step when it comes to choosing a school, completing a program, and joining the respected and essential profession of nursing.