The ultimate guide to becoming a nurse with an accelerated course

Becoming a Registered Nurse (RN) is one of the most rewarding jobs in the healthcare field. Nurses are responsible for treating patients and educating them about specific health issues. To become a registered nurse, you need to complete an accredited nursing program and graduate with a degree or certificate. 

If you’re interested in becoming a nurse but feel that the standard two-year program is too long, then an accelerated ABSN online might be the right path. These programs accelerate your education by condensing it into a shorter timeframe. Moreover, there’s often a heavy emphasis on clinical experience.

What is an accelerated nursing program?

An accelerated nursing program is a course of study that allows students to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Often, these nursing programs are designed for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree in another field and would like to become an RN as quickly as possible. 

This could happen in as little as one year. The program’s accelerated nursing programs may allow students to earn a Bachelor’s or an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN). While the ADN is less prestigious, it’s still a very useful degree with plenty of application in the field. Students in an accelerated program typically take more classes each semester and have more clinical hours.

How to choose the right program

When researching accelerated nursing programs, you may come across a lot of terms such as ”fast track”, “high intensity” and “accelerated”. The difference between these programs may be slight. You will want to perform some research to find the best program for you. To find the right accelerated program for you, consider these factors.

  • Location: How does the accelerated nursing program happen? Online, or do you have to go to a university setting? 
  • Cost: Some accelerated nursing programs may be more expensive. However, they may be worth it due to their reputation and the chance of achieving a higher salary. 
  • Program duration: Some accelerated nursing programs take only a year, but others take two years, so you need to review the details. 
  • Program structure: The structure of an accelerated program is often similar to the structure of a standard two-year program. 
  • Program reputation: Some accelerated nursing programs have a better reputation than others.

Choosing a nursing program can be daunting. There are a few things to remember when searching for the right program. First, you want to make sure that the program is accredited. Colleges and universities go through the process of accreditation and are evaluated regularly to ensure that their curriculum is up to date and meets specific educational standards. You can verify your program’s accreditation status on the US Department of Education’s website.

Increase expertise and salary

As we know, differences exist between medical professionals, such as between nutritionists and nurses. You may consider salary prospects as an essential factor. If so, then an accelerated nursing program may be the right choice if you want to earn more as a nurse.

You will have significantly more time to earn when you graduate from an accelerated program. For instance, if you complete a program in one year instead of two, you will have 12 more months of earning power. That additional year at a higher salary can mean the difference between no pay increase and thousands more.

Pros and cons of accelerated programs

Some significant benefits can be found by pursuing an accelerated nursing program. First and foremost, you can advance your career faster than if you had completed a standard two-year program. Remember, depending on the program, you could potentially graduate with your Bachelor of Science in Nursing in as few as 12 months.

Another benefit of accelerated nursing programs is that they may be cheaper than a standard two-year program. This is especially true if your accelerated nursing program only requires you to complete a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing. Finally, accelerated nursing programs are more flexible. You can typically attend classes in person or online to accommodate your work schedule. This means that you can work as you attend school.

If you already hold a degree in an area such as Psychology or Biology, you may be able to apply some of those credits toward your accelerated program. Additionally, if you want to get into the administrative side of nursing, you could complete other courses simultaneously. For instance, you could investigate business, economics or management classes.

Career opportunities beyond nursing in the medical field

While nursing is one of the most popular careers in the medical field, there are plenty of other options available to you with a nursing degree. For instance, you can start a business or become a healthcare consultant. Healthcare consultants specialize in various fields, including business strategy, marketing and human resources. That’s a great option for people interested in working in management and wanting to specialize in healthcare.

You could also enter medical administration. This field deals with everything from insurance to office management. It’s an excellent option for anyone who likes working with people but doesn’t want to be in direct patient contact. You could also enter medical education. That’s a field for people who wish to teach at the university level. You can specialize in various areas, including nursing, pharmacy and public health. Also, you could become a medical writer. You can write articles, blogs and textbooks thanks to your high skill level.

Is an accelerated program right for you?

If you’re interested in becoming a nurse but feel that the standard program is too long, then an accelerated program could be right for you. Before beginning a program, you need to ensure that it’s accredited and will allow you to graduate with a degree in nursing. Also, when choosing a program, it’s essential to consider the degree as well as the cost of that degree. 

Finally, you also want to think about the time element and your earning power due to an accelerated degree. If you’re looking for a quick way to enter the nursing field and want to earn a higher salary sooner, an accelerated nursing program may be the best option. Remember, whichever path you choose, the most important thing is that you’re happy with what you’ve chosen.

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