Search the Database

1
2
3

Top 30 Affordable Online RN to BSN Programs

Facebooktwitterlinkedinrssyoutube

The demand for educated nurses with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in nursing, or BSN, is on the rise. Not only are many hospitals around the country beginning to require their nurses to hold this advanced degree, but the significant pay raise nurses enjoy after earning this credential offers a substantial incentive for working nurses to hit the books! Working RNs may have concerns about how to earn their BSN degree while working full-time in their current roles, however. Online RN to BSN programs provide a convenient solution to this problem. In this ranking, we explore the top 30 most affordable RN to BSN online programs.

Featured schools

30 Best Cheap Online RN to BSN Programs

RankSchoolCost/Credit
1New England Institute of Technology$230
2Fort Hays State University$230
3West Texas A&M University$295
4California University of Pennsylvania$368
5CUNY School of Professional Studies$275
6The Ohio State University$398
7Arizona State University$435
8Sam Houston State University$216
9Southeast Missouri State University$285
10Penn State University- World Campus$584
11Georgia Southern University$204
12Ohio University$243
13University of Arkansas$283.85
14University of Central Florida$300
15Georgia College$373
16University of Illinois – Chicago$650
17Clarion University$301.58
18Clarion University$301.58
19Slippery Rock University$307.67
20Fitchburg State University$311
21Kaplan University$315
22Southern New Hampshire University$320
23SUNY—Delhi$323.33
24Capella University$360
25Bowling Green State University$414.67
26Loyola University- Chicago$646
27Lamar University$308
28Wilmington University$363
29Old Dominion University$369
30Northwestern College$410

Methodology
Great Value Colleges - RN-BSN OnlineTo compile this ranking, our editors first looked to US News & World Report for the top online bachelor’s degree programs offering a RN to BSN online option. Having identified these schools, we then turned to the web to identify other affordable and accredited offerings not ranked by this prestigious publication. With an initial pool of nearly 60 schools, we applied the rating and ranking methodology below to determine the top 30 affordable online RN to BSN programs. In the case of a tie, the most cost efficient school appears higher in the rankings.

Ranking the Top Affordable Online RN to BSN Programs


Rating and Ranking Methodology

Cost Per Credit Hour

  • Under $250: 4 points
  • Under $350: 3 points
  • Under $450: 2 points
  • Under $550: 1 point

U.S. News & World Report Recognition: Best Online Bachelor’s Programs

  • Top 10 Ranking: 4 points
  • Top 20 Ranking: 3 points
  • Top 30 Ranking: 2 points
  • Top 40 Ranking: 1 point

Customization Options

  • Content Customizations (e.g. Minors, Concentrations, Specializations, etc.)—1 Point
  • Format Customizations (e.g. Hybrid/Online, Full-time/Part-Time, etc.)—1 Point

Wow Factor

  • 1 point awarded for each unique feature or program that “wowed” us

#30 – Northwestern College

Online RN to BSN

Northwestern College
Northwestern College’s RN to BSN online offering can be completed entirely online.

Website
Points: 2
Northwestern College’s RN to BSN online program is designed with the needs of busy students in mind. It is completely online, so practicing nurses don’t have to put their lives on hold in order to complete their education. The program includes rigorous practica and clinical experiences, but these can be completed through online simulations and in students’ current workplaces. Most students can complete this online RN to BSN program in just two years studying part time. However, students are free to tailor their pace to their needs.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $410

#29 – Old Dominion University

Online RN to BSN

Old Dominion University online RN to BSN
Old Dominion University offers a highly flexible online RN to BSN program.

Website
Points: 2
Old Dominion University’s RN to BSN online degree completion program is designed and taught by a faculty of nursing professionals who are leaders in the field. The program focuses on developing students’ professional portfolios to give them an advantage when seeking career advancement. Like most RN to BSN programs, the online and asynchronous format gives students the flexibility they need to earn their degree while also working full time as practicing nurses. Students moving through the program at a rigorous pace can complete it in only three semesters.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $369

#28 – Wilmington University

Online RN to BSN

wilmington university RN to BSN online
Wilmington University’s RN to BSN online program is fully customizable.

Website
Points: 2
Wilmington University offers an online RN to BSN program designed to give students both a well-rounded general education foundation and a comprehensive education in modern nursing practices. Each student’s plan of study is customized to fit them based on their previous education and experience. Courses offered include Lifespan Development, Holistic Health Assessment, and Global Health Care. After graduation, online RN to BSN students will be prepared to practice as generalists. They will also be prepared for many graduate-level programs that can open up even more career opportunities.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $363

#27 – Lamar University

Online RN to BSN

Lamar University RN to BSN online
The online RN to BSN program from Lamar University can be completed in just one year.

Website
Points: 2
Lama University’s online RN to BSN program is a broad program that prepares students for a wide variety of healthcare settings. Topics studied include synthesis in professional nursing, care of communities, and evidence-based practice. Courses are designed to be immediately applicable to students’ current jobs. Most students can complete this 30-credit program in just over a year, even when working full time. Flexibility is a priority, so online RN to BSN students don’t have to worry about compromising their work responsibilities for their school responsibilities or vise versa.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $308

#26 – Loyola University- Chicago

Online RN to BSN

Loyola University Chicago online RN to BSN programs
Loyola University Chicago’s RN to BSN online program offers students versatile scheduling options.

Website
Points: 3
Loyola University – Chicago’s RN to BSN online degree program eliminates redundancy in courses by recognizing previously earned credits and professional development. This ensures that busy students don’t waste time going over material they are already proficient in. All courses are delivered asynchronously, so students with busy or unusual schedules don’t have to worry about logging on for classes at specific times. This online RN to BSN program takes a minimum of three semesters to complete, but students who need a more relaxed pace are free to take longer to finish the program.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $646

#25 – Bowling Green State University

Online RN to BSN

Bowling Green State College online RN to BSN
Bowling Green State College’s online RN to BSN program has flexible pacing options.

Website
Points: 3
Bowling Green State University’s RN to BSN online program is based around Orem’s self-care deficit theory in nursing. This makes the program a great fit for students who want to take a more person-centered and community-centered approach to nursing. Students can choose between four different pacing options, with the most rigorous option being the two semesters completion track and the most relaxed option being the seven semesters completion track. All seven core nursing courses are offered completely online, so online RN to BSN students don’t have to worry about dropping their nursing responsibilities to meet on campus.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $414.67

#24 – Capella University

Online RN to BSN

Capella University online RN to BSN programs
Capella University’s RN to BSN online option features the unique Sophia Pathways.

More Info
Points: 3
Capella University offers an online RN to BSN program with unique format options. Capella uses academic quarters that last three months with three-week breaks in between each quarter. Students must have 45 quarter credits of general education to graduate. Students can transfer these in, complete them normally through the program, or complete them through Sophia Pathways. Sophia Pathways is self-paced and allows students to complete these requirements quickly and at a very low cost. RN to BSN online students can even take their core nursing classes in a self-paced format through the newly implemented FlexPath option.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $360

#23 – SUNY—Delhi

Online RN to BSN

SUNY- Delhi RN to BSN online programs
SUNY-Delhi’s online RN to BSN offering boasts a high job placement rate.

Website
Points: 3
SUNY – Delhi’s online RN to BSN program is designed to be flexible enough to accommodate students working full time as registered nurses. The program requires no visits to campus, with students completing their practicum experiences in their local area. Courses are taught by faculty with experience and the highest available credentials in the field. Courses offered include Ethics in Health Care, Epidemiology, and Population and Community Health Nursing. Most students who complete this RN to BSN online program find employment or are enrolled in a graduate program within six months of graduation.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $323.33

#22 – Southern New Hampshire University

Online RN to BSN

southern new hampshire university online RN to BSN programs
Southern New Hampshire University’s RN to BSN online program prepares nurses for graduate study.

Website
Points: 3
Southern New Hampshire University boasts an online RN to BSN program designed by nurses for nurses. Courses are taught by nursing professionals with relevant field experience. The curriculum is based on the competencies recommended by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Topics studied include diversity, pathophysiology, and patient assessment. RN to BSN online students planning to pursue graduate-level education can opt to take the Advanced Pathway RN to MSN option, which provides a more seamless transition into SNHU’s master’s programs in nursing.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $320

#21 – Kaplan University

Online RN to BSN

Kaplan University RN to BSN online programs
Kaplan University’s online RN to BSN students prepare portfolios designed for career advancement.

Website
Points: 3
Kaplan University’s RN to BSN online program emphasizes professional leadership. It includes courses in management and leadership, as well as courses in health promotion, professional ethics, and community health. During their time in the program, students develop a professional portfolio that will help them be successful as they seek career advancement. This program is great for students interested in moving into leadership positions in the healthcare field. Online RN to BSN students who have graduated from this program have moved on to find jobs as nurse educators, consultants, and administrators.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $315

#20 – Fitchburg State University

Online RN to BSN

Fitchburg State University RN to BSN online
Fitchburg State University offers a robust RN to BSN online option.

Website
Points: 3
Fitchburg State University’s online RN to BSN program equips students with the education they need to meet the professional, legal, and ethical standards they must meet as nursing professionals. The curriculum is broad and includes both a strong liberal arts core and a comprehensive nursing core. Courses include Pediatric Nursing, End of Life Care, and Community Health Nursing. Students who graduate from this RN to BSN online program typically go on to enter a graduate nursing program or be hired as staff nurses, nursing instructors, and nurse managers.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $311

#19 – Slippery Rock University

Online RN to BSN

Slippery Rock University online RN to BSN programs
Slippery Rock University’s RN to BSN online program is designed for working nurses.

Website
Points: 3
Slippery Rock University’s RN to BSN online program is designed to accommodate students with full-time jobs. It is completely online and asynchronous, so students can access course materials when it’s most convenient to them. It was one of the first regionally accredited nursing programs to be offered online, so faculty members are experienced in teaching via this format. Topics studied include healthcare information systems, diversity, and evidence-based decision making. After graduation, online RN to BSN students will be prepared for a wide range of nursing jobs, as well as entry into graduate programs.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $307.67

#18 – Clarion University

Online RN to BSN

Clarion University online RN to BSN
Clarion University’s RN to BSN online program allows credit for life experience.

Website
Points: 3
Clarion University offers an RN to BSN online program that focuses on building on students’ previous education and experience to develop professional nursing skills. Students can earn college credits for life experience through both the Credit for Prior Learning Procedure and the College-Level Examination Program. Students can enter the program with up to 90 previously-earned credits through both these programs as well as transfers from other institutions. Online RN to BSN students who start with the maximum amount of previous credits can complete this program in only three semesters.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $301.58

#17 – Minot State University

Online RN to BSN

Minot State University RN to BSN online
Minot State University’s online RN to BSN program can be completed in just 2 semesters.

Website
Points: 3
Minot State University’s RN to BSN online option is a BSN Completion Program that is designed to be flexible and relevant. All courses except the clinical course are completely online, and the clinical course can be completed in students’ local communities. Students can also choose between a rigorous two-semester pace and a more relaxed four-semester pace. Curriculum is designed to be applicable to both students’ current jobs and their future career goals. Upon graduation, online RN to BSN students will be equipped with the skills and knowledge required to practice nursing in a wide range of settings.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $273.67

#16 – University of Illinois – Chicago

Online RN to BSN

University of Illinois Chicago online RN to BSN
University of Illinois Chicago’s RN to BSN online program mirrors its on-campus offering.

Website
Points: 4
The University of Illinois Chicago’s RN to BSN online program is designed to give busy students the flexible online experience they need without sacrificing the quality of their education. Students study the same curriculum and are taught by the same faculty as their on-campus counterparts. They are also able to regularly interact with peers and instructors through discussion boards and collaborative sessions. Online RN to BSN students typically take one course at a time and complete their degree in 16-months. However, students can adjust this pacing with the permission of their advisor.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $650

#15 – Georgia College

Online RN to BSN

Georgia College online RN to BSN
Georgia College’s online RN to BSN program has an excellent history of job placement.

Website
Points: 4
Georgia College offers an online RN to BSN program that is designed to be both flexible and relevant to students’ career goals. Some courses have optional meetings, and one elective course includes on-campus labs, but all required courses can be completed with no visits to campus. Courses are also delivered asynchronously, making it easier for students with busy or unusual schedules to participate. Most students can complete this RN to BSN online program in only three semesters, and historically, all graduates find employment after graduation.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $373

#14 – University of Central Florida

Online RN to BSN

university of central florida online RN to BSN programs
The University of Central Florida’s online RN to BSN students have the option of completing their degree at a relaxed pace.

Website
Points: 4
The University of Central Florida’s RN to BSN online degree program is open to practicing registered nurses from a variety of educational backgrounds. However, application requirements can be difficult to navigate and fulfill for prospective students whose previous education was not completed in Florida. This program can be completed without any visits to UCF’s campuses, however. Students can complete this program in only three semesters if students choose the heaviest course load allowed, but those online RN to BSN students who prefer a more relaxed pace can take one course at a time and take as long as 10 semesters if necessary.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $300

#13 – University of Arkansas

Online RN to BSN

University of Arkansas online RN to BSN programs
University of Arkansas’ online RN to BSN program is taught by experienced practitioners.

Website
Points: 4
The University of Arkansas offers a completely online RN to BSN program that is designed and taught by full-time faculty members with experience in the field. This program consists of 11 eight-hour courses, one of which being an immersion course that can be completed locally. Flexibility in scheduling is a priority, so students can pace themselves to complete the program in only one year or in up to two years. Topics comprising the curriculum for this RN to BSN online program include critical care, pharmacology, and professional role implementation.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $283.85

#12 – Ohio University

Online RN to BSN

Ohio University RN to BSN online
Ohio University offers an accelerated RN to BSN online offering.

Website
Points: 4
Ohio University’s online RN to BSN offering aims to give students the education they need to advance their careers without making them compromise their current nursing responsibilities. The accelerated, five-week course format allows students to move through the program at a reasonable pace even when taking only one course at a time. It also allows the program to offer eight start dates each year, so students don’t have to wait to complete their education. RN to BSN online students also enjoy the support and instruction of the same experienced faculty members who teach on campus, so they don’t have to worry about getting a lower-quality education than their traditional-format peers.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $243

#11 – Georgia Southern University

Online RN to BSN

Georgia Southern University online RN to BSN
Georgia Southern University’s RN to BSN online program requires an on-campus orientation.

Website
Points: 4
Georgia Southern University offers an online RN to BSN program to students who have an RN license with the state of Georgia. Students are also required to attend an orientation on campus. Both of these requirements make this program less than ideal for prospective students from other states. However, students who are able to meet these requirements enjoy a flexible and affordable education that has been ranked highly by multiple publications. Courses comprising this include Nursing Leadership and Management, Community Health Nursing, and Health Assessment.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $204

#10 – Penn State University- World Campus

Online RN to BSN

Penn State online RN to BSN programs
Penn State World Campus offers a highly flexible RN to BSN online program.

Website
Points: 5
Penn State University – World Campus offers an RN to BSN program that is especially flexible when it comes to format. Students can choose between traditional, online, and hybrid formats, and they can choose whether or not to take it at an accelerated pace. This flexibility does not come at the cost of quality or interaction with peers and professors. Students are taught the same curriculum and have the same professors as their on-campus counterparts, and RN to BSN online students are able to regularly interact with faculty and with each other through email, discussion boards, and video chat.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $584

#9 – Southeast Missouri State University

Online RN to BSN

Southeast Missouri State University RN to BSN online programs
Southeast Missouri State University’s RN to BSN online degree can be completed entirely online or via a hybrid format.

Website
Points: 5
Southeast Missouri State University’s online RN to BSN program combines liberal arts courses and modern nursing theory and practice to give students a well-rounded education. Previous experience and education is recognized, so students don’t have to worry about wasting time going over material they are already proficient in. This program is meant to be delivered completely online, but students may take some face-to-face courses with permission from their advisors. Field experiences are completed in the area where students live, so they don’t have to worry about traveling to fulfill this requirement.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $285

#8 – Sam Houston State University

Online RN to BSN

Sam Houston State University RN to BSN online
Sam Houston State University’s online RN to BSN offering is technically a hybrid program.

Website
Points: 5
Sam Houston State University offers its online RN to BSN program to students with a Texas RN license. This program is technically a hybrid program. It is delivered primarily online, but requires students to be on campus three days each semester. Curriculum emphasizes patient advocacy, ethical accountability, and therapeutic communication. Students who complete this program are prepared for both graduate nursing programs and career advancement. While this RN to BSN online program may not be a viable option for students who live outside of Texas, it is great for nearby students who want both the structure and interaction of face-to-face classes and the flexibility of online classes.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $216

#7 – Arizona State University

Online RN to BSN

arizona state university online RN to BSN
Arizona State University’s RN to BSN online program is comprised of 10 courses.

Website
Points: 6
Arizona State University’s online RN to BSN degree completion program emphasizes evidence-based practice, as well as critical thinking and client advocacy. The program consists of ten courses, which are delivered through a variety of online methods. These courses include Writing for Healthcare Management and Heal Promotion Across the Life Span. Most students are able to complete this program in 15-18 months. After graduation, many RN to BSN online students go on to hired into positions as clinical nurse specialists, nurse practitioners, nursing professors, and medical and health services managers.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $435

#6 – The Ohio State University

Online RN to BSN

Ohio State University RN to BSN online
Ohio State University’s RN to BSN online program emphasizes evidence-based practice.

Website
Points: 6
Ohio State University’s RN to BSN online program boasts flexibility and a low student-to-instructor ratio. This program is completely online and available to both full-time and part-time students. This allows students to simultaneously earn their degree and work full time. Classes are kept small, so even online students can expect personalized attention from instructors. A heavy emphasis is placed on evidence-based practice, and it is integrated throughout the curriculum. Students who complete this online RN to BSN program are prepared for both graduate study and nursing practice as a generalist.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $398

#5 – CUNY School of Professional Studies

Online RN to BSN

cuny school of professional studies online RN to BSN
CUNY School of Professional Studies offers an exceptionally affordable online RN to BSN degree program.

Website
Points: 6
The CUNY School of Professional Studies offers an online RN to BSN program that emphasizes professional development and adaptation to the changing global healthcare market. Topics studied include nursing informatics, care of culturally diverse populations, and global health and policy. This program is transfer friendly, and students can earn credit for work experience and non-collegiate education through multiple options, including portfolio evaluation and subject-area examinations. Altogether, students can enter this RN to BSN online program with up to 90 prior learning credits, which allows them to complete the program quickly and advance in their careers.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $275

#4 – California University of Pennsylvania

Online RN to BSN

California University of Pennsylvania RN to BSN online programs
California University of Pennsylvania’s online RN to BSN is delivered in a cohort format.

Website
Points: 7
California University of Pennsylvania’s online RN to BSN program is delivered in an accelerated cohort format. This means that students enjoy the benefits of a close-knit community of peers, but they give up some flexibility. Students take three courses per semester for three semesters and finish the program in only a year. Courses include Family Health Nursing, Community Health Nursing, Health Assessment, and Trends and Issues in Nursing. This RN to BSN online program is great for students who need an online program to fit their busy schedules, but still want a bit more structure than most online programs offer.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $368

#3 – West Texas A&M University

Online RN to BSN

West Texas A&M University online RN to BSN
West Texas A&M University’s online RN to BSN offering is typically completed within 1 to 2 years.

Website
Points: 7
West Texas A&M University’s online RN to BSN program is designed to be flexible. Students can set their pace to complete the program in only one year or in roughly two years. Advisors work closely with students to ensure that their plans of study meet their needs. Practical and clinical experience requirements can be met through a variety of methods, including simulations, mentored experiences, and case studies. Students who graduate from this RN to BSN online program are prepared for both a wide variety of nursing jobs and master’s programs in nursing.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $295

#2 – Fort Hays State University

Online RN to BSN

fort hays state university online RN to BSN programs
Fort Hays State University’s RN to BSN online program is delivered both synchronously and asynchronously.

Website
Points: 7
Fort Hays State University offers a completely online RN to BSN program that is designed to be completed in three semesters. Course materials are delivered both synchronously and asynchronously. This gives students with unusual schedules a little less flexibility, but it is ideal for students who want more interactivity in their courses. Prospective RN to BSN online students should consult the university’s website and faculty to determine whether or not their previous education will transfer, as many institutions’ credit is not accepted by Fort Hays.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $230

#1 – New England Institute of Technology

Online RN to BSN

New England Institute of Technology online RN to BSN programs
New England Institute of Technology’s RN to BSN online students explore topics such as ethical issues in nursing.

Website
Points: 8
The New England Institute of Technology offers a completely online RN to BSN program that is designed to accommodate students working full-time nursing jobs. Even though the coursework is delivered online, it still includes engaging, hands-on activities. Courses are taught by faculty with relevant experience in the field, and communication with professors and other faculty is easy. Topics studied include applied research statistics, ethical issues in nursing, population health, and health assessment across the lifespan. Upon graduation, RN to BSN online students will be equipped with the knowledge and experience they need to be successful in both a wide range of nursing jobs, as well as graduate-level nursing programs.
Cost Per Credit Hour: $230

5 Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. GHC nursing program listed as second most affordable in the nation | WBHF Radio
  2. GHC nursing listed as second most affordable in nation - AllOnFloyd AllOnFloyd
  3. GHC nursing listed as second most affordable in nation - AllOnPolk AllOnPolk
  4. GHC listed among 45 two-year public colleges across the U.S. at which earnings exceed those of the typical two-year college. | WBHF Radio
  5. Ma To Rn Programs |

Leave a Reply