If you have chosen nursing as a profession and have already qualified with a BSN, then it may feel like moving to the highly in-demand masters of science in nursing – family nurse practitioner qualification may be difficult to achieve. While the course has been shown to add huge value to the careers of nurses, allowing those who have finished it to go on to earn average salaries of over $100k a year, it can be difficult to decide to take the plunge and start working towards the qualification to be a family nurse practitioner, especially if you already have to contend with student debt from your original bachelor degree.
However, you may be surprised to learn that nursing is now one of the most popular fields for people to qualify in using courses that are primarily or entirely done online. Online degrees have been growing in popularity and advancing in terms of options for well over a decade now, and have become among the most popular ways for people to take postgraduate qualifications in a huge range of fields. For nursing, this can offer a way to boost your career prospects that can be a lot more accessible than going to a conventional college to do your masters.
Here are some of the reasons why an online BSN to FNP course may be the solution you are looking for:
Study Around Your Normal Life
Online FNP courses don’t necessarily take any longer to get you qualified than courses where you study on a college campus, however, they do allow a lot more flexibility about when you study. Even if you want to study full time, having the ability to choose when and where you work will allow you to fit your course around things like looking after children, a part-time job, or other normal commitments far more easily than having to attend classes and lectures at set times.
Learning like this will also allow you to work at your own pace, devoting more of your study time to the elements of the course you find most challenging and managing your efforts accordingly. Most people find some parts of a masters course especially difficult and want to work on them more, whereas other elements of the course may be things you have more existing experience and knowledge in and feel you can get through quite quickly. With the online study approach, you can choose what you are working on whenever you sit down to study.
Save Money on A Better Future
As we have already said, the FNP qualification can lead to lucrative work placements and is also highly in demand in the job market. However, even with the likelihood of being able to earn a high salary when you are qualified, it can still feel like a big gamble to take on debt to get there. This can be even more worrying if you are already burdened with debts from doing your initial BSN. With an online masters course, you will not only be paying less for tuition in general but should also find that the cost of your lifestyle as a student will be a lot lower than if you study at a traditional college. This is because you won’t have to relocate or commute, saving the costs associated with that, and you will also find that you can save on other things like childcare and even on the little things that add up, like being able to make your own food and coffee during the day while you’re studying rather than buying them on campus. You also won’t get caught up in social activities as you might on a college campus, keeping costs down and allowing you to focus more.
If you want to, with an online course you will also find it much easier to work while you are studying too, due to the general flexibility of not having to be on a campus at set times to attend lectures, and so this could allow you to fund your studies through working rather than through credit.
A Wide Choice of Providers
Another of the good things about doing the MSN FNP course online is that you will have access to courses operated by schools all over the country. It is a good idea to only consider schools in locations you are willing to travel to on occasion, as most FNP courses will have a required residential study visit as part of the curriculum. This will usually be for just a few days during the entire course, where you will be able to get to know other people taking your course, meet the faculty in person, and take part in any hands-on assessments that need to be done ‘live’ or using equipment you may not have available normally.
However, most people are willing to travel to just about anywhere when it is just a brief stay during a course that takes over 30 months, and so this shouldn’t really be a huge factor in choosing where you do your online degree. Instead, you can shop around for courses that offer features and modules of study that particularly interest you, offer good prices, and have good reviews from the people who have attended them already. Reading consumer reviews is always important when you are making decisions about online products or services, and so it is even more important to do your research when it is something as important as your career!
Another thing to consider when choosing a course is how much support they give to help their online students get work placements. Colleges with good connections and a good track record for doing this are the best ones to choose.
As you can see, by using online nursing masters degree courses, you may find that qualifying as an FNP is more accessible to you than you may have previously thought.