Accelerated MSN Programs


These days, there is a greater number of second-degree learners that are turning to nursing. This created a demand for accelerated programs that are supposed to fast-track baccalaureate and master's degree programs. Second-degree students are esteemed at a higher stage because they bring with them a wealth of knowledge, energy, and experience; things that first-degree learners have yet to attain. 

According to the AACN or the American Association of Colleges Nursing, there are currently 85 accelerated MSN programs in the country. This substantial increase in the number of Accelerated MSN programs is needed to fill what is currently being demanded.

The nursing shortage, as it seems, is here to stay. This has given birth to the alleviated needs in accelerating the existing nursing programs. If accelerated BSN offers a quick transition from a different career to nursing; the Accelerated MSN program (also referred to as Direct Entry MSN program) offers an additional option for the non-nursing BS graduate. 

Program Overview

The curricula for Direct Entry Masters Programs usually consists of basic nursing courses in the first year of the program and moving on to include core graduate and specialization courses for the remaining period. These programs are intensive and fast-paced in nature, combining theoretical classroom instruction with clinical coursework. Some programs offer nursing courses online, or in hybrid classes while others offer evening/weekends classes but clinicals are invariably scheduled in intense programs that include working hours. 

Because of the intensity of the program, courses are being offered back-to-back without any break. The students’ rigorous schedule may hamper the possibility of working while schooling.

Some programs offer you a chance to leave the program with a BSN at the halfway mark of the programs while others don’t but the first phase of the program will consist of the theoretical and clinical components covered by a traditional BSN program.

You will be required to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) before launching into graduate level courses. You may have the option of the completing advanced graduate-level courses on a part-time basis which will extend the time it takes to complete the program by an average of two semesters. 

Areas of specialization available to Direct Entry MSN students include clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner, nurse administrator, nurse leader, nurse midwife, psychiatric, nurse anesthetist etc.  You will usually be required to select your area of specialization at the time of application.

Admission Requirements

Direct Entry MSN programs generally have different requirements depending on the institution running the programs. Most programs require at least a 3.0 GPA in prior undergraduate courses, recommendation letters, and personal interviews as part of the admission process. The quality of your previous course work and professional work experience can also reflect on your application.  Some of the more competitive programs will require you to submit GRE grades although this may be waived in some instances.

You will need to complete some combination of nursing pre-requisites including human anatomy/physiology, biology/microbiology, chemistry/biochemistry, behavioral sciences, and statistics.

Costs of Accelerated MSN Programs

Accelerated MSN programs usually have separate tuition schemes for the two parts of the program. Some institutions levy a flat rate for the pre-licensure phase of the program and transfer to postgraduate rates in the second half. The total cost of the program will depend on the tuition rates of the institution running the program and the amount and level of pre-requisite coursework that you have already completed. Financial aid for accelerated nursing programs may be harder to come by but more and more employers are offering a tuition replacement program to graduates from such programs.

Scholarships may be available but they are very scarce. One very well known scholarship for accelerated MSN students is the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation or RWJF New Careers in Nursing (NCIN) Scholarship program. They have recently announced that they intend to award $10,000 to 400 students that are going to take accelerated programs. This is the best time to get started on your plan to enroll in an accelerated MSN program.

We do have a large database of scholarships that contain a wide range of financial aid opportunities. You should take a look.

Prospects

Graduates from the Direct Entry MSN program are valued by employers who value the experience and the more diverse set of skills these students usually possess. Graduates from this program are also encouraged to fill the shortage in nursing faculty by becoming educators in the nursing field due to the wider experience and of achievement in the intensive program they bring.

Accelerated MSN Programs

Currently, there are 87 nursing schools across 28 states that offer accelerated MSN programs.


Albany State University
Albany, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 71.60%

Armstrong State University
Savannah, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 84.30%

Azusa Pacific University
Azusa, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 84.50%

Boston College
Chestnut Hill, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 93.10%

Brenau University
Gainesville, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 85.10%

California Baptist University
Riverside, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 84.80%

California State University-Fresno
Fresno, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 84.50%

California State University-Fullerton
Fullerton, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 92.70%

California State University-Long Beach
Long Beach, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 97.10%

California State University-Sacramento
Sacramento, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 95.60%

Capella University
Minneapolis, MN


Case Western Reserve University
Cleveland, OH

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 86.30%

Charles R Drew University of Medicine and Science
Los Angeles, CA


Clayton State University
Morrow, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.80%

DePaul University
Chicago, IL


East Carolina University
Greenville, NC

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 96.40%

Emory University
Atlanta, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 92.80%

Georgia College & State University
Milledgeville, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 95.60%

Georgia Southern University
Statesboro, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 82.90%

Georgia State University
Atlanta, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 87.90%

Kennesaw State University
Kennesaw, GA


La Salle University
Philadelphia, PA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.60%

Loma Linda University
Loma Linda, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.30%

Marquette University
Milwaukee, WI

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 87.70%

Metropolitan State University
Saint Paul, MN


MGH Institute of Health Professions
Boston, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.90%

Millikin University
Decatur, IL

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 80.30%

Montreat College
Montreat, NC


Mount Saint Joseph University
Cincinnati, OH

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 87.10%

Northeastern University
Boston, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.50%

Oklahoma Baptist University
Shawnee, OK

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 90.20%

Pace University-New York
New York, NY

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 100.00%

Pacific Lutheran University
Tacoma, WA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 93.90%

Regis College
Weston, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.00%

Rush University
Chicago, IL


Saint Louis University
Saint Louis, MO

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 92.80%

Salem State University
Salem, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 76.70%

Samuel Merritt University
Oakland, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.90%

San Francisco State University
San Francisco, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 82.00%

Seattle University
Seattle, WA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 97.40%

Sentara College of Health Sciences
Chesapeake, VA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 96.50%

Seton Hall University
South Orange, NJ

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 81.00%

Simmons College
Boston, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 93.10%

Sonoma State University
Rohnert Park, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 96.30%

Southern Oregon University
Ashland, OR


The University of Tennessee-Health Science Center
Memphis, TN

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 100.00%

The University of Tennessee-Knoxville
Knoxville, TN

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 90.30%

The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 92.70%

Thomas University
Thomasville, GA


United States University
San Diego, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 74.80%

University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, AL

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 96.50%

University of Arizona
Tucson, AZ

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 92.00%

University of California-San Francisco
San Francisco, CA


University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
Cincinnati, OH

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 84.50%

University of Hawaii at Manoa
Honolulu, HI

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 86.60%

University of Illinois at Chicago
Chicago, IL

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 82.40%

University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 95.60%

University of Massachusetts Medical School Worcester
Worcester, MA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 93.60%

University of Memphis
Memphis, TN

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 87.60%

University of New Hampshire-Main Campus
Durham, NH

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 96.90%

University of North Georgia
Dahlonega, GA


University of Rochester
Rochester, NY

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.20%

University of San Diego
San Diego, CA


University of San Francisco
San Francisco, CA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.50%

University of South Alabama
Mobile, AL

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.10%

University of Southern Maine
Portland, ME

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 88.40%

University of Vermont
Burlington, VT


University of Virginia-Main Campus
Charlottesville, VA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 90.00%

University of Washington-Seattle Campus
Seattle, WA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 90.80%

University of West Georgia
Carrollton, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 90.60%

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Milwaukee, WI

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 77.50%

Valdosta State University
Valdosta, GA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 86.20%

Vanderbilt University
Nashville, TN


Virginia Commonwealth University
Richmond, VA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 86.10%

Wilkes University
Wilkes-Barre, PA

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 89.50%

Xavier University
Cincinnati, OH

Average NCLEX pass rate
  • RN: 82.30%

Yale University
New Haven, CT