With the field of nursing making constant changes to its hiring recommendations and specialty options, the demand for highly trained professionals is growing across the United States.
Since 2010, schools and healthcare facilities across Kentucky have been working toward the increased employment and graduation of baccalaureate nurses. As a result, new nurses and those who have their Associate’s degrees may find their best nursing program option in a Bachelor’s-level program.
Ready to take the step to a Bachelor’s degree in nursing?
Find the schools that fit your needs with the links below.
- Traditional BSN Degree
- Accelerated/Second Degree BSN
- RN to BSN Bridge Programs
- LPN to BSN Bridge Programs
Looking to Become an RN in Kentucky?
A Bachelor’s Degree May Be the Best Nursing Program for You
There are plenty of colleges for nursing to compare in Kentucky, so don’t be afraid to do some research and make a school choice that suits your previous education, your career goals, and your natural talents.
More and more schools are now offering baccalaureate nursing programs, thanks to industry-wide recommendations that urge schools to make baccalaureate and Master’s-level nursing education more widely available. In the report The Future of Nursing, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation says that the nursing industry should aim for an 80% ratio of registered nurses with Bachelor’s degrees (2017).
What Should I Look for in BSN Nursing Schools in Kentucky?
The first step to choosing a nursing program that may help you start working toward your goals is creating a list of top nursing schools. This list should highlight schools that are accredited by the ACEN or CCNE, are listed as approved education providers by the Kentucky Board of Nursing, and offer the level of education you need to become certified.
You can leave your list fairly broad and open-ended to start; as you learn more about your educational preferences, you may find it easier to cross schools off your list and get down to a handful of schools you wish to apply to. Consider these factors when comparing schools.
Differences in Kentucky Nursing Colleges
- Large or small institutions
- Average class size
- Training in various nursing specialties
- Different clinical settings
- NCLEX pass rate
- Job placement rate
Applying to Kentucky Bachelor of Science in Nursing Colleges
Choosing schools may be a big part of your work, but you still have to craft applications that showcase your skills, education, and potential. Each school may have slightly different admissions requirements and application documents, but in general, most nursing programs assess students with similar criteria. Initially, you must submit an application and your application fee.
Some schools require an essay for consideration; an essay is your change to highlight your previous experience with the healthcare field, whether personal or professional, and tell admissions representatives why you may be a good fit for their school.
Programs also look for strong academic performance; in particular, they look for high grades in science courses. At the high school level, consider taking AP courses in chemistry, biology, and other sciences to demonstrate your ability to handle high-level nursing coursework.
What Are BSN Programs in Kentucky Like?
As you tour and explore different colleges for nursing, you may start to get a feel for the educational goals of each institution. In truth, most four-year nursing programs are similar in their scope and learning outcomes, which is why it’s important to tour schools and figure out where you feel at home. In some schools, you may find large class sizes that encourage diverse discussion and varied research projects. Smaller schools may encourage strong connections between professors, peers, and community professionals.
Before you can walk across the stage and earn your Bachelor’s in nursing, you must earn 120 credits in general education classes and nursing coursework. Your courses should give you the chance to earn several hundred hours of clinical experience.
Kentucky BSN Degree Basic Requirements
At all nursing schools, you need to master the skills covered on the NCLEX. The NCLEX is mandatory for licensure, so accredited schools must teach these topics in their standard curriculum. For that reason, you may find that many nursing schools have overlapping course requirements.
After learning about fundamental nursing skills, healthcare ethics, and medical terminology, you may move on to more complex nursing specialties and procedures.
Courses Required in BSN Nursing Schools in Kentucky
- Foundations for Professional Nursing
- Research for Evidence-Based Nursing Practice
- Synthesis of Clinical Knowledge for Nursing Practice
- Anatomy and Physiology for Nursing
RN to BSN Programs in Kentucky
Quite a few colleges for nursing in Kentucky now offer RN to BSN bridge programs. If you have an Associate’s degree in nursing, make sure your list of top nursing schools includes this type of program. It may save a considerable amount of time for RN graduates, since it utilizes your previous general education coursework and nursing coursework to reduce your program duration to 18 to 24 months.
Coursework Options in RN to BSN Programs in Kentucky
- Family Centered Care of Adults
- Nursing Care of Childbearing Families
- Leadership and Management in Nursing Care Delivery
Kentucky Accelerated BSN Programs
If you have a Bachelor’s degree in any field other than nursing, an accelerated BSN program may be a natural fit for you. Accelerated nurse programs are meant to be finished in 12 to 18 months, providing you the chance to start a career in an entirely new industry in short order.
Classes Required in Accelerated Nurse Programs
- Assessment and Health Promotion Across the Lifespan
- Fundamentals of Adult Nursing Care
- Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing
- Public Health Nursing
LPN to RN Programs in Kentucky
While all nursing schools do not yet offer LPN to BSN bridge programs, you may find that these programs are popping up at four-year institutions all over the country. They give diploma holders a straightforward way to meet ADN and BSN requirements in one program. You should anticipate spending about three years in this type of program.
Classes Offered in LPN to RN Programs
- Healthcare Systems from an Interprofessional Perspective
- Career Management in Nursing
- High Acuity Nursing
- Nursing Care of Pediatric Patients
All Nursing Schools Are Not Created Equal…
How to Make a List of Top Nursing Schools in Kentucky
Are you ready to choose the best nursing program for your learning needs and style? You are well on your way. At this point, you should know which type of program can help you get to a BSN. Whittle down your list of schools to include only those that offer the type of program you need.
Once schools start sending you information in the mail, begin sorting it into different binder compartments so you can quickly compare schools and figure out which ones meet your minimum standards. With a list of questions, such as the list below, you can contact each school and figure out what benefits they offer potential nursing students.
Questions to Ask Bachelor of Science in Nursing Colleges
- What is the NCLEX pass rate for the most recent graduating class?
- What is the most recent job placement rate for graduates?
- What type of support does the school offer students who are preparing for the NCLEX?
- Does the school have study groups for nursing students at different levels of study?
- What is the average program completion time?
- What type of financial aid is available for nursing students?
This is your chance to start building the future that you want for yourself. With our list of Kentucky nursing programs, reach out to schools in your community to learn more.