If you are interested in a fast track to becoming an advanced practice nurse in Florida, an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) to a Master's of Science in Nursing (MSN) program might be a good choice for you.
These programs allow students to earn a BSN, in typically 15 months, and then immediately begin their MSN course work. Some schools in Florida even allow the degrees to overlap so you can take coursework for both programs at the same time.
The program is particularly popular for students who did not study nursing as an undergraduate and/or receive a Bachelor's Degree in Nursing. While taking both programs back to back or overlapping can seem daunting, BSN to MSN programs are designed to have coursework that is both relevant and provides for a smooth transition between the two degrees. It is an intensive curriculum that is doable, but requires dedication as you jump from one degree to the next.
Florida Nursing Trends and Career Statistics
The state of Florida is a popular state to attend graduate school for nursing. In total, there are 11 universities and 11 private universities that offer graduate degrees in nursing. 21 universities offer MSN degrees, 14 offer doctorates (12 of which are DNP) and 14 offer graduate certificate programs in the state. Between 2015-2016, there were 5,593 students enrolled in graduate programs with 1,968 nursing graduates.
One of the reasons Florida is so popular among graduate students is because nurses are in such high demand in the state. This can be attributed to both aging populations as well as the rate of retiring nurses. Particular nursing positions in high demand include Unit Managers, Patient Care Coordinators, and Administrators in hospitals, home health, and public health. According to the Florida Center for Nursing, 63.9% of RN’s work in hospitals, 8.1% in home health care, 4.7% in ambulatory care, and 5.3% in long term care. Source
Popular BSN to MSN Programs in Florida
University of Central Florida
The Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN) at The University of Central Florida is designed to add to students – undergraduate nursing degrees and professional experience. The program is meant to prepare participants for leadership positions in a variety of healthcare settings. In order to enter into the MSN program at UCF, certain requirements must be met.
To be considered, applicants must submit an official transcript, hold a BSN degree from a regionally accredited institution, be a licensed registered nurse in the State of Florida, and have an RN License. In addition to these requirements, students are required to go through an application process, which includes a written essay and an interview.
At Chamberlain University, students can earn their BSN and MSN together, making their degree path more time and cost effective. Students still completing their BSN degrees may apply to the MSN degree program and are able to take certain MSN courses in place of two required BSN nursing courses.
The program begins with your RN/BSN curriculum, then as you move on to your MSN coursework, you will choose between five specializations: Educator, Executive, Family Nurse Practitioner, Healthcare Policy or Informatics. Upon graduation you will have earned both your BSN and MSN degree.
Emory Nursing University
The Emory School of Nursing is Ranked No. 4 in the nation for graduate nursing education by US News & World Report. At Emory, students can earn their BSN degree in 15 months, then move on to earn their MSN. In order to apply for the MSN program, applicants must have completed or be enrolled in seven courses.
These courses fall under the categories of Physical Sciences, Math, and Social Sciences. Within the Emory Nursing program, students are able to specialize in several different program specialties. Two of the most popular dual programs are Family Nurse Practitioner and Midwifery, and Women’s Health and Midwifery.
What is the difference between a BSN and MSN?
A BSN and MSN are both starting points for an advanced career in nursing. Individuals who earn their BSNs and MSNs are able to grow their careers beyond basic nursing and take advantage of a larger pool of job opportunities. For example, both degrees allow nurses to expand their careers out of clinical care. With either degree, graduates may pursue a career as a nurse educator or as a nursing executive. A BSN or MSN is the foundation for a massively growing industry, which is in demand for a multitude of healthcare roles.
When considering an advanced nursing degree, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) are often confused. Here’s the difference:
Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree: A BSN is typically earned in four years and can often be taken while students are still working so they can continue their education without having to stop their careers. Accelerated BSN programs are available, however only with prior education and prerequisite requirements. Coursework for BSN programs cover the foundation for entry-level nursing. Courses cover topics in areas such as public health, social sciences, nursing management, research, and physical science. Students learn how to work within a team of physicians and receive hands-on experience.
Master of Science in Nursing Degree: An MSN program is a two year graduate program for students who hold a BSN degree. While some programs allow students admission with health-related bachelor’s degrees, it is not common. In the first part of the MSN program, students will become licensed Registered Nurses (RNs), then continue on to cover their master’s degree coursework. The main difference between a BSN and an MSN is that MSN programs require students to pick a specialization. Specializations often focus on education or leadership and might include, nurse practitioner, director of nursing, quality improvement executive, patient safety director, clinical nurse educator, nursing administration, or clinical nurse leader.