Accelerated BSN Programs – North Carolina Nursing Schools
You don’t always find the right career on the first try. If you want to become a nurse after trying out another area of study or career, you can save time with an accelerated BSN program. These North Carolina programs are designed for students who already have a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing related subject. By concentrating on nursing theory and clinical practice, you may be able to complete your training in as little as 12 months. Check out North Carolina universities that offer this program today.
According to the North Carolina Medical Journal (NCMJ), in North Carolina there are more nurses than any other type of healthcare professional. In fact, the NCMJ states “nursing jobs are an essential driver of the state’s economy”. As a non-nursing degree holder, there are many different reasons you might want to become a nurse. Whether you are looking for more meaningful work, a better salary, or job security, you will likely find all of these if you practice as a Registered Nurse.
The state of North Carolina has several universities and colleges that offer fast track programs for earning your bachelor’s degree in nursing. The first step in finding the best program for you, is to request information from the schools in our listing that are of interest to you. We have provided a featured schools section, below, which includes schools that offer online and distance education options for program completion.The online programs offer a good deal of flexibility if you plan to work while in school, or if you have significant family or personal responsibilities to balance with your nursing education.
ABSN Programs in NC: An Overview
Accelerated Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing programs in North Carolina are the quickest way to attain licensure as an RN. Most accelerated BSN programs take approximately 10 to 15 months to complete. Since your BSN is a second degree, you have probably already taken many of the general college course requirements. Undergraduate credits for courses you’ve already taken such as social sciences, math and English can be applied to your nursing degree.
The courses in a second degree BSN are all focused on the skills, tools, and knowledge needed to enter the nursing field. Enrolling in a second degree accelerated nursing program is an ideal way to quickly become a nurse.
Candidates for an accelerated BSN program must have a four-year degree from an accredited university and have the required prerequisite courses completed.
Typical prerequisites include courses such as:
- human anatomy
If you don’t have the required prerequisites, many schools offer them before starting your program, or they can sometimes be taken alongside your nursing classes.
Clinical Requirements for Accelerated BSN Programs
The second degree BSN program typically includes three semesters of full-time study. Students are also required to complete practicums, or clinicals, in healthcare settings. This is so they can apply the nursing knowledge they gain in the classroom to real-world situations.
On average, practicums are 100 hours of supervised work in medical clinics, hospitals, or other healthcare settings. If you are interested in an online second degree BSN program, you may be wondering if a practicum will still be required, and how you would complete it.
The schools offering distance education do still require a clinical component, and each school has its own method for you to complete your clinicals. Many online schools have developed partnerships with healthcare organizations that allow you to complete clinical practicums in your own area.
According to the Duke University School of Nursing, many of today’s accelerated BSN programs also focus on clinical and healthcare technology experiences using case studies and simulations. In addition, students can access state-of-the-art laboratories to prepare for caring for patients in real life.
Simulated patient care is a relatively new, yet is already a popular method of allowing nursing students to gain valuable clinical skills. This is especially true when clinical sites may be sparse. It is also a safe way to train nurses without putting patients at risk.
An evidence based handbook for nursing has a chapter entitled “Enhancing Patient Safety in Nursing Education Through Patient Simulation” written by two University of North Carolina nursing instructors, which outlines the role of simulator based clinical experiences in patient safety and nursing education.
Accelerated BSN Program Curriculum in North Carolina
Below, we outline the common courses you need to take for a BSN program.
Common courses in an accelerated BSN program include:
- Pharmacology I and II
- Principles, Theories and Practice of Nursing
- Advanced Chemistry
- Legal Issues in Nursing
- Community Health Issues
- Nursing Leadership and Professional Development
After completing the accelerated BSN program, all aspiring nurses in North Carolina must pass the NCLEX exam for state licensure. It’s an in-depth and comprehensive exam, and most colleges and universities offer excellent workshops and classes for preparation. After completing the program and passing the NCLEX, you can become licensed as a Registered Nurse in North Carolina.
Career Outlook, Job Opportunities and Salary
The career outlook for nurses is positive in North Carolina. Efforts by organizations in the state plan for and create a nursing workforce that meets the needs of state residents. Erin Fraher and Cheryl Jones proposed five recommendations for implementation that could result in system-wide nursing workforce success. The article says that funding, research, infrastructure, inter-professional collaboration, and planning are the keys to success for the nursing workforce and the state’s residents. All of this means that North Carolina is poised to remain at the forefront of planning for and solving issues involving multiple aspects of the nursing workforce.
The median income for North Carolina’s nurses is $58,000 (2017). Nurses in the state are able to secure positions as travel nurses, in hospitals, assisted living facilities, private physician offices, medical clinics and home healthcare. As you continue to learn about nursing programs in your state, keep in mind that you will be able to enjoy all the rewards nursing has to offer after completion, and you can do so in a state that supports its nurses and advocates for the profession’s needs.