Is an ABSN Program Better Than a Traditional BSN?

If you are looking to increase your earning potential and learn a profession that would work with children, you may have considered going into nursing. But what about an ABSN (Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing) program to learn nursing? Learn more about that option here.

The demand for nursing courses has gradually gone up as more and more students are now interested in nursing degrees. A lot of good institutes also offer a variety of nursing degrees to choose from, and this is where some students might get confused. One of the most common questions is whether to get a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or simply go for an accelerated program.

People who have a bachelor's degree in a different field and want to change careers may find the accelerated programs available to be encouraging. Also, as the baby boomer generation ages, the skills of registered nurses with a bachelor's degree will be in demand.

The pandemic has also shown how important nurses are to the healthcare system every day and in emergencies. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that between now and 2031, the need for nurses will grow by 6%. A lot of people are hence taking up nursing courses like BSN, MSN, and accelerated BSN programs.

But is an ABSN program better than a regular BSN program? Let’s take a deeper look at both programs.

 What is the Purpose of an ABSN?

The need is to first understand what is an ABSN program and determine if it suits you. The best person for an ABSN is someone who already has a bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing. The ABSN is made to help people who want to become nurses get into the field quickly and without having to spend another four years in school.

Graduates of an ABSN nursing program are ready to start working as nurses in a wide range of healthcare settings. The accelerated program lets the student get their BSN quickly and prepares them well for the exam to get their license. Graduates of an ABSN program are able to practice based on both systems and evidence.

Through health education and promotion, they will be able to encourage people to live healthy lives. Most importantly, they will be able to advance in their careers and one day lead a group of people.

Program Length For ABSN vs. BSN

If you want to get a bachelor's degree in nursing faster, you probably already have completed a college degree. A standard BSN takes about four years, or eight semesters, to finish. On the other hand, most accelerated BSN programs can be finished in less than two years.

For example, few universities offer accelerated nursing programs that can be finished in as little as 15 months. Students can finish the classes in just four semesters (versus spending four years in nursing school).

Different Courses For an ABSN and a BSN

You'll be happy to know that even though the ABSN curriculum moves quickly, it doesn't deviate from what you need to know to be able to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN Exam). The basic difference between the ABSN and BSN programs is that a traditional BSN student has to earn credits in general education while they are in school.

People in the ABSN program are expected to have already finished their general education credits, so these credits can be transferred. In the ABSN degree program, students take classes that are mostly about nursing because of this.

Content of an ABSN Program

The career aspects of students with BSN and ABSN programs are vast and bright. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing said in a report in 2021 that 77.4% of employers prefer BSN graduates and that 40.6% of healthcare facilities require a BSN.

In order to get their BSN, students in an ABSN program need to get 64 credits in their previous general studies and 56 credits alone in nursing. In order to finish their program, students need to achieve 120 credits. Students must have already taken a number of prerequisite courses, such as:
  • Microbiology
  • Sociology Statistics
  • Anatomy and physiology of Lifespan Development
  • Algebra for College Chemistry
  • Psychology in General, in English
Before you can start the career-focused ABSN classes, you have to finish these classes. If an ABSN student doesn't have to take classes in general education, they can focus on learning and improving their nursing skills and knowledge.

Students take classes in Pharmacology and Nursing Fundamentals during their second term. Students take a variety of advanced and basic nursing courses in the following terms. Some of these classes, but not all, are:
  • Research on the Leadership and Management of Family Nursing
  • Care for your health
  • Trends in Health Policy for Nurses
  • Nursing for mental health
Students also have to finish a professional practice practicum. This lecture course has hands-on clinical work.

The Health Resources and Services Administration says that by 2030, the United States will need 3.6 million more registered nurses than it has now (2.8 million). People with a BSN are eligible to teach about health, give their patients expert care, lead care teams, and work in specialized nursing environments.

They can become registered nurses and, if they want, can even go on to study at a higher level. With their skills, nurses with a BSN can answer the urgent need for nurses in the American healthcare system.

If you want to get into the field quickly and already have a bachelor's degree, you can confidently enroll in an accelerated BSN program, which is neither harder nor less in-depth. The ABSN program will help students get ready for a career in nursing and give them the skills they'll need to give their patients great care.

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