RN to BSN Degree

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN)

Offered By: College of Nursing and Health Care Professions

Earn Your RN to BSN in 12 Months*: Online and Evening

There has never been a better time than now to enroll in an online RN to BSN program. Explore just a few of the many reasons to choose GCU’s accredited RN to BSN online program:

  • Get Your RN-BSN
    Earn your degree from GCU in as little as 12 months.*
  • 5-Week Classes
    With most classes being five weeks long, this helps you accelerate your degree completion.
  • Online Courses
    All theory courses are offered online. Practicum hours are required in a clinical setting of your choosing in your local community.
  • 90 Credits Transfer
    Our free Lopes Credit Evaluation will transfer every credit possible.
  • 2.5 Year MSN
    Fast-track option can earn you both a BSN and MSN within 30 months.

If you are a registered nurse with an associate degree or diploma certificate in nursing, Grand Canyon University’s (GCU) Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN) online program can prepare you for expanding professional roles in the healthcare system of tomorrow. Obtaining your RN to BSN degree will position you to broaden your understanding of best practices in nursing, prepare you for graduate study and equip you for leadership positions in which increasing levels of education are expected.

GCU’s RN to BSN online degree program is tailored to meet the needs of the RN adult learner and to maximize the strengths that the working RN already possesses. Our university counselors provide an upfront time to completion, and our net price calculator tools provide you with a general estimation of the cost of attendance.

If you are looking to become a BSN-prepared nurse, you could earn a scholarship of $334 per credit**. Request more information about this opportunity.

Gain Valuable Experience

In your BSN courses, you will receive instruction from practicing nurses and experts in the field who will share their knowledge and experience in the areas of clinical patient care, healthcare management, professional development in nursing practice and leadership. You will gain valuable experience through hands-on and academic course curriculum that can be directly applied to a nursing job post-graduation.

Why Earn Your RN to BSN Online at GCU?

Explore just a few of the many reasons to choose GCU’s accredited RN to BSN online program:

  • Improve Patient Outcomes: Study findings conducted by Linda Aiken in the 2011 article, “The Effects of Nurse Staffing and Nurse Education” actually indicate that the proportion of nurses with bachelor’s degrees is associated with better outcomes.
  • Increase Your Opportunities to Work in Magnet Hospitals: Launched in the 1990’s by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the Magnet Recognition Program identifies hospitals committed to a higher level of care for both patients and nurses. Many Magnet hospitals seek BSN-prepared nurses to staff a majority of their nursing positions.

BSN Careers

According to an article “Top 9 Advantages of a BSN Degree” from Nurse Journal, as a BSN-prepared nurse, you will have:

  • Job Opportunities: Of 187,000 nursing jobs posted during a three-month period, nurses with a BSN were eligible for 88% of the openings, while nurses with a diploma or associate degree were only eligible for 51% of positions.
  • Career Advancement: The knowledge that you gain in this program will prepare you for positions that include team leader, clinical manager and unit supervisor. More and more clinical nursing positions require a BSN. Get ahead of the curve while opening doors to opportunities in different healthcare disciplines.
  • Workplace Options: Depending on your area of interest, you will be prepared to work in hospitals, ambulatory care centers, health service organizations or rehabilitative settings. Ultimately, the knowledge you gain in an RN to BSN program will equip you to pursue a career you are passionate about.


GCU is fully accredited from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). For more information on the accreditation of nursing programs and other university licensures, please visit our University Accreditation and Regulations page.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How long does it take to complete the RN to BSN online program?

Most of the core courses are five weeks in length. With 90 transfer credits that are accepted and applied toward the degree, the RN to BSN can be completed in as little as 12 months.§

What topics will be covered?

The clinical and healthcare principles you learn in a BSN program include:

  • Health promotion for the family, wellness education, and cultural diversity
  • Developmentally based physical assessment
  • Concepts of statistical analysis for health care including experimental design and sampling methods
  • Critical appraisal of the research literature and application of evidence in nursing practice
  • Nursing leadership and management, effective communication and interdisciplinary collaboration

Can I continue to work while I earn my BSN?

GCU's RN to BSN degree program is designed to allow you to continue working as a nurse while you are enrolled in the online or evening program. This way, you can further your education without sacrificing your career.

In addition, if you have a busy work schedule, enrolling in an online program may be a great option for you. GCU’s online programs give you the convenience and flexibility needed to get ahead, while ensuring you receive a quality education.

Does the program make me eligible to sit for specialty certification in community and public health roles?

Students enrolled in the RN-BSN Program at GCU receive exposure to community and public health content in their Concepts in Community and Public Health course and have an opportunity to apply their learning by way of a community teaching project; however, the program does not prepare graduates for specialty certification in community or public health which is regulated by individual state boards of nursing. Students are encouraged to contact their individual boards of nursing to obtain specific information regarding additional content and clinical requirements to obtain community/public health certification in their state.

Does the RN to BSN degree also prepare me for nursing positions beyond direct patient care in the clinical setting?

This degree can prepare students for a variety of career paths in nursing. Graduates will be equipped to take their knowledge and skills beyond the bedside. Graduates can become clinical nurse educators, unit supervisors, care coordinators, nurse navigators and clinical instructors. Graduates may also transition into leadership positions within the healthcare system. The critical thinking skills, knowledge of evidence-based practices and exposure to research principles gained in this program are valuable and applicable in many nursing roles.

*Transfer of 90 credits that apply to your degree, and continuous enrollment required

**MOU-RN-BSN Monthly-Sep2021: This scholarship is only valid for those applicants who submit a complete application for a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program beginning in September 2021. If you enroll in the RN to BSN degree program through any of the College of Nursing’s online or evening campus offerings, Grand Canyon University will offer you $334 per credit per course for your program. This offer cannot be combined with any other scholarships.

†Retrieved from “The Effects of Nurse Staffing and Nurse Education on Patient Deaths in Hospitals With Different Nurse Work Environments,” US National Library of Medicine, in January 2019

‡Retrieved from “Top 9 Advantages of a BSN Degree,” Nurse Journal, in March 2021

§Must transfer 90 semester credits accepted toward the required 120 credits to complete the program in 12 months.

Develop Skills With GCU’s RN to BSN Online Program

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Total Credits: 120
Online: 5 weeks
[More Info]
Up to 90 credits, only 84 can be lower division
Online: $477 per credit [More Info]

Course List

General Education Requirements:
6-8 credits
36 credits
Open Elective Credits:
76-78 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
120 credits

Core Courses

Course Description

This course is a bridge course for the RN who is returning to formal education for the baccalaureate degree in nursing. The course focuses on differentiated nursing practice competencies, nursing conceptual models, professional accountability, integrating spirituality into practice, group dynamics, and critical thinking. The course also emphasizes writing and oral presentation skills.

Course Description

This course focuses on family theories, health promotion models, cultural diversity, and teaching learning principles. The course emphasizes the family as the client, family FHP health assessments, screenings across the lifespan, communication, community resources, and family education. Appropriate health promotion education is evaluated against evidence-based research and practice.

Course Description

This course focuses on methods of health history taking, physical examination skills, documentation, and health promotion strategies. The course emphasizes the individual as the client, health patterns across the lifespan, community resources, and the teaching learning process.

Course Description

This course focuses on the community as a large system of people of varying cultures, spiritual values, geographic norms, and economic conditions, all influenced by social-legal-political variables that impact individual and community health. Particular attention is paid to vulnerable subgroups in the community. Emphasis is placed on critical analysis, using epidemiological data and functional health pattern assessments to plan and intervene in areas of health promotion and disease prevention.

Course Description

This is an introductory course on concepts of statistics, emphasizing applications to health care professions. The course is designed to prepare learners to understand concepts of statistics and the appropriateness of statistical methods used in published research papers and a variety of settings. Areas of emphasis include an introduction to the statistical analysis concepts of variable/reliability factors; P values; experimental design; descriptive statistics, including mean, median, and mode; sampling methods; and power analysis.

Course Description

This writing intensive course promotes the use of research findings as a basis for improving clinical practice. Quantitative and qualitative research methodologies are presented. Emphasis is on the critical review of research studies and their applications to clinical practice. An overview of evidence-based practice is provided. Prerequisite: HLT-362V.

Course Description

This course introduces a Christian foundation for spiritual assessment and care with specific emphasis on biomedical ethical principles and ethical decision-making within nursing practice. Learners practice assessment and propose holistic interventions that take into account the dignity of the human person. These assessments and interventions contribute to the physical and spiritual well-being of individuals across the life span and the health-illness continuum.

Course Description

Registered nurses with current licensure have a basic understanding of the role of the professional nurse. This course emphasizes further development of the professional nurse role. Critical management and leadership values, styles, and skills are a major focus. Particular attention is given to the identification of personal leadership styles and values. Importance is placed on development of effective management and leadership skills, with emphasis on effective communication.

Course Description

This course is designed to enhance the working RN’s existing understanding of the pathophysiological processes of disease as they affect clients across the lifespan. The interrelationship of structural and functional reactions of cells and tissues to genetic alterations and injurious agents provide the foundation for comprehending clinical manifestations and treatment protocols. Critical thinking and nursing management are enhanced through the use of case studies that integrate nutritional and pharmacological concepts. The understanding of environmental and biological risk factors provides the nurse with the knowledge to provide health promotion and prevention education.

Course Description

This course explores the impact of numerous professional and societal forces on health care policy and practice. Content includes an analysis of current studies; nursing care policy and position statements; political, environmental, and cultural issues; and changing nursing roles. The study of these issues examines the impact on health care delivery systems in today’s society.

Course Description

This is a writing-intensive course. The course combines scholarly activities with clinical practice experiences designed to synthesize learning into the practice environment and impact health outcomes. Learners participate in planned, clinical experiences that refine professional competencies at the baccalaureate level and enable learners to integrate new knowledge and higher level skills to advance nursing practice. Clinical practice hours will be dedicated to learning objectives in leadership and in community health. The professional capstone project offers learners the opportunity to propose a resolution to an issue or problem significant to nursing practice within a clinical environment. Learners identify, design, and propose an evidence-based solution within a health care organization with guidance from faculty and a preceptor in the field. The proposal must reflect synthesis and integration of course content and professional practice. Development of the capstone project is guided by the baccalaureate program learner learning outcomes. Clinical hours: 100. Combined ; 50 hours in leadership and 50 hours in community health. Prerequisites: NRS-430V, NRS-429VN, NRS-434VN, NRS-428VN, HLT-362V, NRS-433V, PHI-413V, NRS-451VN, NRS-410V, and NRS-440VN.


GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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