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RN to BSN Online Nursing Program

Complete Coursework: 16 months* Credit Hours: 34 Tuition: $9,996**

* Diplomas are awarded in December and May.

** Tuition for RN to BSN Online Nursing Program is $12,274. Effective August 8, 2017 students who apply may receive a scholarship to reduce tuition down to $9,996. Scholarship is for new students only; students who have previously dropped out of program once started will not qualify for this offer. Offer may not be combined with any other scholarship offers. Additional fees may apply and students may be required to complete additional non-nursing courses, which could increase the total cost of the program. University reserves the right to increase prices at any time.

The RN to BSN program is designed to develop expertise in leadership and evidence-based nursing practice. This program helps you, the working nurse, enhance your decision-making and critical thinking skills, and strengthen your skills in evidence-based nursing practice, leadership and management in order to meet the challenges of today's healthcare work environment. You will benefit from evidence-based learning both in class work and on the job. You will be able to apply a comprehensive patient-centered approach to assessing your patients and families including physiological, psychosocial and cultural factors.

Key elements of Purdue University Northwest's RN to BSN Academic Partnership Program include:

  • Content delivered via online, technology-enhanced courses
  • An instructional format offered independent of traditional semester schedules, allowing students to enter and progress through the program in an expedited manner.

Upon completion of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, you will:

  • Utilize the nursing process to implement principles of person centered care within the framework of basic human needs and life span development.
  • Demonstrate effective communication while collaborating therapeutically and effectively with healthcare system stakeholders.
  • Demonstrate professional leadership in the coordination of healthcare that minimizes risk, promotes safety, and manages resources by creating a culture of continuous quality improvement.
  • Implement the principles of evidence based nursing practice in policy development and the provision of person centered care in an evolving healthcare environment.
  • Utilize information technology to coordinate and support decision-making in the provision of person centered care.
  • Implement critical thinking strategies in the context of health promotion, health maintenance, health restoration and palliation to maximize optimal person centered health outcomes.
  • Exemplify professional values to include accountability for practice, and principles of altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, social justice and ethics.

Students admitted into the RN to BSN program must complete 8 upper division electives (24 credit hours). The nursing program consists of 12 required upper division nursing courses for a total of 34 credit hours. The RN to BSN program is 120 credit hours total. All nursing courses are 5 weeks in length. Students must follow the sequence of courses as prescribed by the College of Nursing. The upper division nursing program can be completed in as little as 16 months.

Textbook Information

Textbook list

Please check this link periodically to see if there are any updates or changes to the textbook list. We suggest buying your books as you move through the program, not all at once. As a safeguard, about 2 to 4 weeks before a class starts, check the booklist before you purchase any textbooks or materials.

As a courtesy, here are some websites that students find useful for buying and renting textbooks:

More information on ordering textbooks can be found on the Student Services page.

View course offerings

RN-BSN Completion program handbook

More information can be found on the RN-BSN program information page.

Online Courses

Core Nursing Courses

This course examines the concepts that form the philosophical and theoretical basis of nursing science and patient centered care. The content is leveled to provide undergraduate students a foundational understanding of nursing as a discipline and profession. The conceptual framework and philosophy of the College of Nursing will be studied. Special emphasis will be placed on the relationship between nursing philosophy, knowledge, research, and practice.
Ethics as applied to nursing is examined both theoretically and practically. Basic concepts associated with ethical theory are applied to moral self-concept, role function, and practice situations involving interdependence. Particular attention is given to the ideas of advocacy, autonomy, and authority in beginning nursing practice.
Theories and evidence related to leadership, organization and management are examined. Specific strategies for effective time management, priority setting, decision making career planning and delegation are introduced. Approaches to the quality nursing practice within a complex work environment are discussed. Taken concurrently with NUR 39100 Professional Ethics.
The most common morbidity problems manifested throughout the lifespan are studied. Pathophysiologic concepts and physiologic responses are integrated with the nursing process. The application of evidence based nursing practice modalities provides a basis to address basic human needs.
The role of the nurse as a health educator is implemented. Nursing and non-nursing theories related to health promotion and teaching-learning processes are examined. Principles of health literacy related to patient education are emphasized. Evidence-based nursing projects related to health education within a community environment are implemented.
Basic human needs of the aged, persons living with chronic health problems and/or disabilities are introduced. Principles of health promotion, health restoration and palliation are examined. Evidence based nursing practice is emphasized within the context of patient centered care.
This course examines the research process and use of research based evidence as a foundation for nursing. A review of both quantitative and qualitative methodologies will be incorporated. Distinguishing among non-research based primary and meta-sources of evidence will be emphasized. Critical thinking skills will be used to read and evaluate published research.
Concepts of community and public health nursing are introduced. Community health nursing roles related to evidence based practice, leadership, collaboration, quality improvement and political activism are explored. Critical thinking skills are applied in the assessment of vulnerable populations existing within various communities. The reciprocal influence of the environment on the patient, family and community relative to human needs is emphasized.
This course provides a basic understanding of nursing science, computer science, and information science to prepare students to effectively and efficiently use technology to identify, collect, process, and manage health care information. A focus on technology based health applications which support clinical, administrative, research, and educational decision-making to enhance the efficacy of nursing is provided.
Using a project management focus, this course provides students the opportunity to synthesize and apply previous knowledge related to: patient-center care, teamwork and collaboration, evidence-based practices, quality improvement, and safety in a professional leadership role.
Principles of physical assessment builds on previous knowledge and skills gained from the sciences, humanities, and nursing. This course uses a systematic approach to patient history-taking, review of systems, physical exam and documentation of findings for individuals across the life span. Pre or Co-requisite: NUR 39000 Nursing Research.
In collaboration with a nursing faculty and clinical preceptor, students will implement a project-based practicum experience consistent with professional nursing roles. Students will use critical thinking skills and evidence-based practice (EBP) to promote patient-centered nursing in a health care environment of work complexities. This course will culminate with an evidence-based project that will be presented to peers and the academic community.

All students begin with either NUR 18200 Conceptual and Theoretical Thinking in Nursing or NUR 45200 Quality and Safety in Professional Nursing Practice and conclude with NUR 49800 Capstone Course in Nursing. NUR 39100 and NUR 48200 are taken concurrently.

Sample Course Syllabi

NUR 18200 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 38801 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 39000 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 39100 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 39400 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 39700 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 41500 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 45100 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 45200 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 48200 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 48300 Syllabus (.PDF)

NUR 49800 Syllabus (.PDF)

Non-Nursing Required Courses

There are 8 required non-nursing courses totaling 24 credit hours. Students must complete introductory statistics prior to enrolling in NUR 39000 - Nursing Research. However, students may take English composition II (ENG 10500) either before or during NUR 39000 - Nursing Research. The other six required non-nursing courses can be taken during or after completion of the nursing courses. However, students may only have up to 6 credit hours of non-nursing courses left to complete by the time they are enrolled in the Capstone nursing course. Your nursing advisor will work with you to develop a schedule for completing the non-nursing requirements.

Non-nursing required courses can be taken at any regionally accredited institution. Students can also take these courses through Purdue University Northwest (PNW). All of the course options through PNW are available online and formatted in 5, 8, or 10 week sessions for your convenience.

All of the required non-nursing courses can be completed online through PNW. View more information on the non-nursing PNW courses.

Course Listing:
ENG 10500 English Composition II (3 credits)
Communications elective (3 credits)
Humanities electives (6 credits)
Free electives (9 credits)

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"I believe that I have had tremendous professional growth since starting this program. I believe that because of the program I have become more balanced as a nurse. I started this program thinking that I just wanted to attain a Bachelor's degree, and now I have been inspired to continue on to start a Master's program."

Jennifer Majewicz


"The BSN program has taught me how to gather literature, appraise the evidence, determine reliability and validity, understand statistics, and now most importantly develop and implement evidence-based practices."

Vicki Caldwell

RN to BSN Capstone course, Nursing Reflective Journal, March 25, 2012