What is an Accelerated Nursing Program?

Students choose to pursue an accelerated nursing program for a variety of reasons. Some students may have graduated with a different degree while others may already be working in a different career field but are considering a career change. Regardless of background or circumstance, accelerated nursing programs are a cost- and time-effective option for aspiring nursing students. Continue reading for a brief overview of accelerated nursing programs!

What is an accelerated nursing program?

Accelerated nursing programs are pre-licensure programs designed for individuals who are interested in pursuing a career in nursing. Programs exist for students who have already completed a non-nursing-related bachelor’s degree program and for students who have no prior college experience. These programs are designed to provide students with a nursing-specific education that will prepare them to enter the workforce promptly upon graduation. While the format of accelerated coursework can be in-person or online, hands-on experience such as clinicals and observation hours will likely take place in-person.

How long are accelerated nursing programs?

The length of accelerated nursing programs can range from one to two years depending on the rigor and structure of the program. Programs may last longer for students who have no prior college experience. The curriculum can consist of accelerated versions of traditional Bachelors of Science in Nursing (BSN) coursework or the program may choose to omit introductory courses by making them prerequisite courses. 

How much are accelerated nursing programs?

The average tuition for accelerated nursing programs ranges widely depending on factors such as location, duration, and format of the program. According to Nurse.org, accelerated nursing programs can range from $40,000 to over $80,000. 

Are all accelerated nursing programs the same?

No! While accelerated programs can be similar, every program will still vary in some aspects. For example, curriculum and prerequisite courses may differ between programs. It is important to note that accelerated nursing curriculums usually do not cover prerequisite courses, which must be taken either prior to applying for the program or prior to the start of the program. Most programs usually require prerequisite courses such as general biology, general chemistry, statistics, etc. It is crucial to research any accelerated program you are interested in and make note of their prerequisite courses as well as other requirements such as GPA, certifications, work experience, or recommendations. 

By Jenny Li
Jenny Li Senior Peer Consultant