Getting into a BSN Program: Are You Qualified for an Accelerated Nursing Program?

If you need help getting into a BSN program, we can help you figure out if you’re qualified for a 16-month accelerated BSN program and offer application tips, including how to boost your resume. If you are interested, we can connect you to ABSN programs that fit your needs.

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Looking to apply to a 16-month Bachelor of Science in Nursing program? This is a great avenue for you to become a nurse on an accelerated timeframe. But before you head too far down the rabbit hole, here are five ways to tell if you have a shot at getting into a BSN program, specifically an accelerated BSN program. And if you decide to continue with the path to become a nurse, we’ve also got some nursing school application tips for you.

1. You have some college education.

To qualify for a 16-month BSN program, also referred to as an Accelerated BSN (ABSN) program, you’ll either need a non-nursing bachelor’s degree or a certain amount of college credits depending on the nursing school. ABSN programs are designed to let you pick up where you left off with your education so that when you start nursing school, your sole focus is professional nursing study. Getting into a BSN program like this will allow you to leverage your previous education and get to work as a nurse sooner.

2. You are good at math and science.

Solid math and science skills are essential to providing safe, effective patient care. Nurses, for example, rely on their math skills to calculate correct medication doses and their science skills to determine the best course of action when caring for a specific patient.

This explains why prospective ABSN students must successfully complete a series math and science-based prerequisites before they can apply to nursing school. While the number of prerequisites varies by school, the most common courses include chemistry, microbiology, anatomy, physiology and statistics. If you can ace these courses, you should be able to get through your more challenging nursing courses.

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3. You are good at time management.

A 16-month ABSN program is an intense education path that requires you to learn, retain and absorb massive amounts of information in a short period of time. Therefore, consistency, prioritization and planning are key to survival in nursing school. A lot of students rely on physical planners and the time-blocking method to plot out every moment of their days.

4. You can keep up with accelerated nursing curriculum.

ABSN programs involve a rigorous blend of fundamental coursework, nursing skills and simulation labs, and clinical rotations in diverse practice settings.

Given the intensity of ABSN curriculum, you’ll find that a lot of accelerated nursing students don’t work while in school. Therefore, it’s important to look at your personal and financial obligations to see if a 16-month BSN program is feasible for you right now.

5. You are competent and compassionate.

Competence and compassion go hand in hand when it comes to quality patient care. Nursing schools value applicants who not only have a solid GPA, but also have the ability to show empathy toward others, which includes being able to convey openness without passing judgment.

nurse sitting and bonding with her senior patient

How to Apply to an ABSN Program

Once you’ve satisfied all the admission requirements for the nursing school you want to apply to, there are some things you can do to create the most competitive application possible. While every school has a different application process, there’s a good chance you’ll be asked to supply letters of academic/professional recommendation, a current resume and a written goal statement.

Recommendation Letters for Nursing School

When applying to nursing school, it’s important to have the right people vouch for you. This means not only choosing folks who will speak highly of you, but also those who can write your recommendation letter well in advance of the application deadline.

It’s a good rule of thumb to contact your references early in the admissions process and give them a two-week deadline for writing their letters. Also, be sure to tell your references that their letters must be on official letterhead and signed by them.

Current Resume that Reflects Leadership Skills

While your transcripts provide insight into your academic qualifications, your resume should reflect other skills and experiences that would position you as a standout ABSN student. This can vary from carrying out a leadership role to holding special certification or performing community service. So, whether you job shadowed a health care professional as an undergraduate or helped care for an ailing family member, be sure to reflect this in your resume.

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Goal Statement that Shows a Passion for Nursing

While standard application materials showcase your academic and work experience, a goal statement gives a nursing school a better sense of who you are as a person. When writing your goal statement, you’ll most likely have to address these types of questions:

  • Why do you want to become a nurse?
  • What characteristics do you possess that will make you a good nurse?
  • What leadership qualities do you believe you possess?
  • How will your past work/academic experience help you transition into nursing?
  • How do you plan on handling the rigorous demands of a 16-month BSN program?

Keep in mind, there are probably other applicants out there that share the same academic qualifications as you. Getting into a BSN program will require you to use your goal statement as an opportunity to focus on what makes you an ideal candidate for both nursing school and the nursing profession. Consider these points before writing your statement:

  • Be organized by identifying your key message and making an outline.
  • Be memorable by explaining what inspired you to want to become a nurse.
  • Be passionate by sharing your dedication toward helping others.
  • Be direct by using clear, strong language that gets to the point.
  • Be authentic by writing from the heart and explaining what motivates you.
  • Be detailed by checking every sentence for grammatical errors.
  • Be concise by avoiding details that detract from your key message.

Need help finding a 16-month BSN program?

Simply complete our online form and we’ll connect you with ABSN programs that align with your qualifications. We offer this as a free service, and you are not obligated to attend any of the nursing schools that contact you.

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Ready to start your nursing journey?