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Online Nursing Education Guide

Published by monica on Thursday, February 28, 2013

Photo credit by Lower Columbia College's buddy icon Lower Columbia College

There are several websites out there on the internet that allow you to complete some form of nursing education online, and indeed it is becoming more and more of a viable alternative for young students and older people alike to get the qualifications they need to successfully launch a prosperous career in nursing. The advantages of completing online nursing education is that, in most cases, you can carry on with your original full time job whilst training takes place, as you can access the course at times which are convenient to you and there are no additional travel times to worry about.

The first important thing to realize is that your entire education and qualification cannot be completed online. Only the non-clinical section of the degree can be completed online, with clinical requirements being able to be fulfilled at some sort of medical facility which is as close to your home possible.

The way that online nursing education works is simple. A lecturer or professor will upload his lecture materials, as well as various assignments for you to complete, onto the website. In addition, there will also be a bulletin board or forum on the website where you can discuss the material and ask questions, either to other students or to the lecturer himself. Most of the time, you can come and go on the website as you please, reading lectures and completing assignments at your leisure. However, the lecturer may wish everyone to keep certain times free so that he can hold a real-time online web chat. Assignments are generally emailed, although there may be written exams which may have to be taken in person. Although you can access the site when it suits you, in the majority of cases you will have to work at a certain speed – normally the online courses keep at the same pace as the students on campus. If this is the case, then you won’t be able to start at any time, and you may even me asked to visit the campus for a short while, although residential requirements are extremely rare.

The RN-to-BSN and MSN degrees are the most commonly offered online degrees. If you’re taking an entire degree, then it’s extremely likely that you’ll be allocated an academic advisor and instructor to help you plan your curriculum. If, however, you only plan to take a couple of courses, then you shouldn’t expect to work one-on-one with an academic advisor.

It’s important to note also that online courses are not free - students should expect to pay anywhere from a little less than $100 to more than $300 dollars per credit, with average tuition for online programs sponsored by public universities generally falling in the $110-170 range. Do watch out for additional fees, such as registration and enrollment charges, which you may also be obliged to pay.

There are also requirements for applying to complete an online course – check with your educational establishment before enrolling, and most of all, have fun!

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