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If you’re interested in becoming a nurse, the first step is to earn a college degree. Many nurses start out by earning their associate’s degree or diploma to become a registered nurse (RN). This allows them to start working in a hospital or other healthcare center so that they can gain on-the-job skills. However, most employers prefer nurses who have a bachelor’s degree (often called a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, or BSN). Earning your BSN will allow you to take on more responsibility at work – and to make more money, too.

Online RN-to-BSN programs are extremely popular. They allow professional nurses to boost their credentials (and their job prospects) while continuing to work at their current place of employment. Other perks of online BSN programs typically include flexible schedules, affordable tuition rates, and hands-on training opportunities that students can complete in their local community.

The 50 Best Online BSN Programs Ranking Methodology

Selection Criteria

For this ranking, we looked for public and private (non-profit) colleges and universities that offer bachelors of science in nursing online. Because the focus of this list is on affordability, we only considered programs with average* tuition rates of $20,000/year or less.

In addition, we only considered nursing programs that have earned accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

*For public schools, we calculated the average value of their in-state and out-of-state rates.

Ranking Factors

Once we’d compiled a list of all the colleges that offer online bachelor’s degrees in nursing and meet the above criteria, we then collected data in four categories:

  • Program Popularity: How many students choose to earn their degree in nursing over another health-related option? To find out, we looked at both the number of undergraduates who earned their BSN in the 2015-16 school year as well as the percentage of all health program graduates that that number represents.
  • Accreditation Date: How long has the school held continual accreditation from the CCNE? Programs that manage to maintain their accreditation status for many years tend to be better established and offer a higher quality, more reputable education than programs that are new or have at some point lost approval from the CCNE.
  • Commitment to Online Health Education:Including nursing, how much effort and resources does the school devote to providing online access to healthcare courses and programs? To answer this question, we looked at the number of online undergraduate degrees the school offers in health-related subjects.
  • Affordability: What is the average annual cost of attendance?

After collecting and sorting all the information, we ranked the candidates according to their performance in each area. Finally, we summed up the results and gave each school a final score using a curve so that the top-scoring program earned an even 100 points.

Read more about the best cheap online RN to BSN programs below!

Cheap Online RN BSN Degrees Ranked


Medical University of South Carolina Online Nursing Degree Programs
Asynchronous classes mean you can earn MUSC’s top online RN BSN degree on your own time.

50. Medical University of South Carolina

Online RN-BSN Program

Website
The three-semester, accredited online nursing degree program at MUSC allows working adults to balance their careers with their education. The degree mixes short “didactic courses” – which you can complete asynchronously – with longer clinical courses, each of which focuses on a different clinical area (e.g. gerontology, public health). As a result, you acquire knowledge in a variety of key fields while also preparing for graduate-level study. And because the program operates using the cohort model, you’ll take all classes with the same group of students, giving you the chance to both network and build professional relationships.
Average Tuition & Fees: $19,787/yr
Score: 70

Eastern Kentucky University Online Nursing Degree Programs
Choose between full- and part-time study as you earn EKU’s affordable bachelor of science in nursing online.

49. Eastern Kentucky University

Online RN-BSN Degree Program

Website
No matter how much time you have to devote to your studies, Eastern Kentucky University has a program that meets your needs. If you have the availability for full-time study, for example, you can pursue the one-year accelerated program. Or if you plan to work while going to school, the traditional two-year degree should fit your schedule. The latter option also offers three start dates each year so that you can enter the program at the best time for you. Regardless of which cheap online RN to BSN program you choose, you’ll benefit from its fully online coursework, CCNE-accredited curriculum, and provocative, discussion-based classes.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,524/yr
Score: 70.2

University of Toledo Online Nursing Degree Programs
U Toledo offers one of the best programs for transfer students on this online BSN program ranking.

48. University of Toledo

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
If you’re looking for a BSN program with a strong support network, check out the University of Toledo. With dedicated instructors, advisors, and your own Success Coach, you’ll have plenty of support as you earn your accredited RN to BSN online. The school is also a great choice for transfer students, as faculty members take pains to ensure a smooth transition. Indeed, the school offers a self-described “seamless” transfer experience in which U Toledo begins evaluating your credits as soon as you submit your transcript. Plus, you can apply for a number of transfer-specific scholarships and grants to reduce the cost of your tuition.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,216/yr
Score: 70.6

University of Arkansas Online Nursing Degree Programs
The top online bachelor’s degree in nursing at the University of Arkansas exposes students to contemporary issues in the field.

47. University of Arkansas

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
You’ll never have to visit campus while earning this affordable online bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Arkansas. Although the program does require a project-based practicum, you’ll work with staff to identify an appropriate site in your own community. Besides this experiential learning opportunity, U of A’s program also shines for its broad curriculum. Indeed, you’ll take courses that touch on everything from informatics to community-based care and other contemporary nursing topics. And in the end, you’ll graduate with a deeper understanding of the “social, cultural, political, and economic issues” that inform healthcare delivery in the United States.
Average Tuition & Fees: $15,994/yr
Score: 70.9

Linfield College Online Nursing Degree Programs
Linfield stands out on this RN to BSN online ranking for its international experiential learning opportunities.

46. Linfield College

Online Nursing Degree

Website
Students looking for an accredited online BSN program with a global component should give Linfield College a look. Not only does the degree emphasize diversity, social justice, and other progressive values, but you can also opt to complete your Integrated Experiential Learning requirement abroad. Kenya, Vietnam, and Peru are just a few countries with programs open to Linfield students. And even if you decide to fulfill your requirement closer to home, you’ll still benefit from the school’s flexible scheduling, CCNE-accredited curriculum, and generous transfer policy; you can even get credit for prior work experience.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,320/yr
Score: 72.1

University of North Carolina Wilmington Online Nursing Degree Programs
The cheap online nursing degree program at UNC Wilmington includes coursework in research, leadership, policy, and more.

45. University of North Carolina-Wilmington

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
With its six yearly start dates and fully online curriculum, UNC Wilmington provides a top online RN BSN degree for working adults. The school also offers a broadly applicable curriculum, with classes in both specialized areas (gerontology and community health) and wider issues in the field (transcultural care and management, for example). You’ll also take a required “Health Policy” class, ensuring that you’re up to date on the state of healthcare delivery in the country, and a research-focused class that helps you interpret nursing science now and in the future. A required capstone rounds off your studies, asking you to synthesize what you’ve learned before graduating.
Average Tuition & Fees: 13935.5/yr
Score: 72.2

University of South Carolina Upstate Online Nursing Degree Programs
A virtual clinical and two delivery options help UNC Upstate’s affordable online RN to BSN program stand out from the crowd.

44. University of South Carolina-Upstate

Online RN-BSN Program

Website
The University of South Carolina – Upstate differentiates itself with this bachelor of science in nursing online ranking in a few ways. First, you have the option to complete the degree 100% online or incorporate a once-weekly class at the campus in Greenville. Second, instead of requiring an in-person practicum or hands-on experience, you’ll complete a “virtual clinical” from your own home. However, the degree also comes with a few caveats. For example, even if you opt for the fully online course of study, you will have to visit campus once for an orientation. Also, the program only accepts applicants with an associate’s degree or diploma from an ACEN-accredited institution.
Average Tuition & Fees: $16,689/yr
Score: 72.8

University of Cincinnati Online Nursing Degree Programs
The University of Cincinnati incorporates unique “professional projects” in its accredited online BSN program.

43. University of Cincinnati

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
Thanks in part to its affordable tuition, strong focus on leadership, flexible scheduling, and integration of professional experiences, the University of Cincinnati offers one of the top online nursing degree programs in the country. That latter point, in particular, helps this degree stand out. While you won’t necessarily have to complete traditional clinical rotations, many of the courses incorporate professional projects that help you apply what you’ve learned. These projects typically focus on specific issues – like community or population health – and feature heavily in your final capstone class. If you’re still not sure whether or not UC is a good fit, you can attend one of the near-monthly online informational sessions to learn more.
Average Tuition & Fees: $18,667/yr
Score: 72.9

University of West Florida Online Nursing Degree Programs
Before earning an affordable RN to BSN online at USF, you’ll need to complete the state’s prerequisite coursework.

42. University of West Florida

Online Registered Nurse (RN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

Website
The University of West Florida describes its online program as a “high-tech, low-hassle” way to earn your degree. And it’s also high-quality, as evidenced by the school’s placement on multiple online ranking sites. USF’s accredited online BSN program in particular earns high marks thanks to its affordability and flexible study options. In addition, the curriculum attracts applicants who want to learn about both specific fields and broad industry trends. As for the application process, make sure you either have an AA degree from a Florida community college or meet UWF’s specific course requirements (including the program prerequisites).
Average Tuition & Fees: $12,217/yr
Score: 72.9

University of Southern Mississippi Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online RN BSN degree ranking, Southern Miss represents a particularly strong choice for service members and their families.

41. University of Southern Mississippi

Online Nursing RN to BSN Degree

Website
Anyone can benefit from the cheap online RN to BSN program at the University of Southern Mississippi. Not only is the degree available entirely online, but it allows candidates to complete the two required clinical experiences in their current place of employment. But the school extends even more benefits to service members and veterans. With special scholarships, advising, housing options, and resources for military students and their families, it’s no wonder why Southern Miss (which holds an official military-friendly designation) ranks among the top military-friendly online colleges. Even if you’re not military, give the financial aid office a ring; they can help you find scholarships to reduce the already affordable tuition rate.
Average Tuition & Fees: $12,094/yr
Score: 73.2

University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Online Nursing Degree Programs
UW – Milwaukee offers one of the country’s top online bachelor’s degrees in nursing for motivated learners who want a self-paced program.

40. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Online RN to BS

Website
Flexibility is the name of the game at UW – Milwaukee. The school moves beyond the traditional online vs. in-person paradigm by introducing a self-paced curriculum called UW-Flex. Rather than complete a regimented set of courses, this system encourages you to focus on demonstrating true competency over your coursework. Although this option isn’t for everyone, self-motivated learners with plenty of work experience should see serious benefits to this approach. (Note that you do need to be a registered nurse in Wisconsin or Illinois to qualify.) If UW-Flex isn’t a great fit, the more traditional accredited online bachelor’s degree in nursing still has plenty to offer, thanks to its focus on developing culturally competent leaders who can work in myriad healthcare settings.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,672/yr
Score: 73.4

Western Carolina University Online Nursing Degree Programs
As you earn WCU’s cheap bachelor of science in nursing online, you’ll take live courses that mimic the on-campus experience.

39. Western Carolina University

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
Before you even apply to Western Carolina University, you can access an online tool that details the school’s affordable online RN BSN degree and helps you evaluate whether you’ve met admission requirements. Once you’ve enrolled, you’ll find a program that seamlessly blends asynchronous and synchronous courses, giving you the feel of an on-campus program while affording you time to continue your career. The curriculum is divided into four blocks, each of which focuses on a particular topic, such as Leadership or Community Health. Interestingly, the program also devotes an entire block to research. Within this segment, you’ll learn how to read critically, interpret studies, and apply your knowledge to clinical practice.
Average Tuition & Fees: 11933.5/yr
Score: 74.7

University of Texas Arlington Online Nursing Degree Programs
The accredited online RN to BSN program at UT – Arlington lets you map your own course of study based on your goals.

38. University of Texas-Arlington

Online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Website
The leadership-focused curriculum at UT – Arlington makes it a natural choice for nurses who hope to move into managerial roles at their organizations. This top RN to BSN online program helps build critical-thinking, problem-solving, and research skills, in part by asking you to complete relevant assignments in your own place of work. Arlington also stands out for its flexible course of study, which you can customize to meet your schedule and career goals. And if you have ample professional experience, you can pursue credit-by-examination for some courses to save both time and money.
Average Tuition & Fees: $16,268/yr
Score: 74.7

California University of Pennsylvania Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online nursing degree program ranking, Cal U shines for its nursing honor society and thoughtfully designed course of study.

37. California University of Pennsylvania

Online RN to BSN Degree Program

Website
At the California University of Pennsylvania, you can earn an accredited bachelor of science in nursing online in just four semesters with part-time study – or three semesters if you enroll as a full-time student. This efficient program is a great choice for working professionals, as it provides distinct tracks for specialized areas of interest (such as community health, family health, and more). Plus, Cal U’s thoughtfully designed program amplifies skills you already have through your work as an RN, building on your knowledge rather than making you take courses that simply rehash what you already know. Qualifying students can even join a local chapter of Sigma Theta Tau, the international nursing honor society, to network and pursue continuing education.
Average Tuition & Fees: $12,506/yr
Score: 74.9

Delta State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
Delta State’s affordable online BSN program incorporates plenty of experiential learning.

36. Delta State University

Online RN-BSN Completion Program

Website
With an average tuition of just under $6,500, Delta State University offers an undeniably cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing. But you won’t sacrifice quality for price at this Mississippi school. Rather, the robust curriculum mixes a hefty dose of theory with plenty of hands-on work. This includes three practica, which you can complete in your own community. All other coursework takes place entirely online, and you’ll have access to an advisor who can help plan your course of study. Although the program has a single start date each year (fall semester), you can submit applications on a rolling basis and can opt for either full- or part-time study.
Average Tuition & Fees: $6,418/yr
Score: 75.2

Florida Atlantic University Online Nursing Degree Programs
If you’d like to work in a community or population health setting, give FAU’s affordable RN to BSN online degree a look.

35. Florida Atlantic University

Online RN-BSN Track

Website
Before applying to Florida Atlantic University’s cheap online nursing degree program, be sure to determine whether the curriculum is authorized in your state. If it’s not, check with the admissions office to see if there’s an option that works for you. Once you’re ready to enroll, you can choose from three annual start dates and four plans of study (the latter determines how many semesters you’ll take to finish the program). Another benefit of attending FAU? The program features a unique nursing immersion course – with a focus on either community or population health – that will give you direct training in the real-world issues you’ll face on the job.
Average Tuition & Fees: 11053.5/yr
Score: 75.4

Kent State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
You’ll design a highly individual capstone project to complete Kent State’s affordable online RN BSN degree.

34. Kent State University

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Website
Kent State University wants to help you make the most of your associate’s degree or diploma program. To that end, you can transfer up to 33 nursing credits into the school’s CCNE-accredited online BSN program. A free credit evaluation worksheet helps you determine which credits are eligible before you apply, so you can better plan your course of study. But perhaps the program’s most distinct feature is its customizable capstone. Here, you’ll work with faculty to identify and develop a “scholarly nursing project” that incorporates skills and topics you’ve covered throughout the BSN curriculum.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,194/yr
Score: 75.7

Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online nursing degree program ranking, IUPUI shines for its topical, cutting-edge electives.

33. Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis

Online RN to BSN Degree Completion Option

Website
Eight IU schools of nursing collaborated to create IUPUI’s top online RN to BSN program, giving you the combined benefits of multiple campuses and dozens of experts. These resources lend themselves to a remarkably rich curriculum. Not only does the core sequence cover a number of special topics (e.g., policy, informatics, and research), but the electives also make it easy to hone your expertise. For example, classes like “Genetics and Genomics” and “Global Health Issues in Nursing” impart in-demand skills that will help you be successful in the 21st-century world of healthcare. The degree also offers plenty of versatility, including both full- and part-time schedules (with the option to finish in just 12 months in some cases).
Average Tuition & Fees: $19,498/yr
Score: 75.8

SUNY Empire State College Online Nursing Degree Programs
SUNY Empire State’s cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing can help you transition to a leadership role at your organization.

32. SUNY Empire State College

Online RN to BSN

Website
Nurses who hold a New York State license are eligible to earn an accredited bachelor of science in nursing online from SUNY Empire State. If you qualify, you’ll want to give this affordable program a look. Like many similar BSN degrees, you can opt for either full- or part-time study. But at SUNY Empire State, you can also mix in some on-campus courses to fulfill general education requirements. With 35 locations across the state, there’s no doubt you’ll find a site close to home. Of course, you also have the option to complete all your coursework online. Either way, you’ll benefit from the school’s generous work and life experience credit opportunities as well as the BSN program’s leadership-focused curriculum.
Average Tuition & Fees: $11,910/yr
Score: 75.9

University of Southern Indiana Online Nursing Degree Programs
The top online RN to BSN program at USI helps you apply evidence-based practices in the workplace.

31. University of Southern Indiana

Online RN to BSN

Website
The professionals at the University of Southern Indiana know that healthcare – and healthcare delivery – is a rapidly changing field. As such, they designed an affordable online RN BSN degree that equips you to face changes as they come. Specifically, this program prizes critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills. At the same time, it teaches you how to use these skills to best serve your patients. To that end, you’ll take required classes like “Application of Evidence-Based Practice,” which helps you evaluate evidence and apply your conclusions on the job. And in a “Clinical Synthesis” class, you’ll tackle a big-picture problem and demonstrate how you’d provide quality care in diverse healthcare environments.
Average Tuition & Fees: $12,725/yr
Score: 76.3

West Texas A M University Online Nursing Degree Programs
West Texas A&M offers one of the best options for Lone Star State residents on this bachelor of science in nursing online ranking.

30. West Texas A & M University

Online Nursing (RN to B.S.N.) Degree

Website
The BSN program at West Texas A&M earns accolades from quite a few ranking services, both for its cost and for its overall quality. The cheap RN to BSN online program uses case study-based practica, simulated scenarios, and mentored experiences to give you hands-on practice without requiring clinical hours. The program is also inherently flexible; advisors will work with you to create a plan of study that fits your schedule, working around seldom-offered courses to ensure you graduate on time. And even though tuition already averages out to an extremely reasonable $8,000, Texas nurses might qualify for a tuition rebate so they can earn their degree more affordably.
Average Tuition & Fees: $8,002/yr
Score: 77.1

Auburn University Montgomery Online Nursing Degree Programs
Students who reside in Montgomery can join a hospital-sponsored cohort as they earn this top bachelor of science in nursing online.

29. Auburn University-Montgomery

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Website
The experts who designed the BSN curriculum at Auburn University – Montgomery don’t want you to simply build on what you know from your career as an RN – they want you to challenge your pre-existing beliefs. To this end, the program asks you to reflect critically on your assumptions, incorporating evidence-based techniques into your practice and any leadership roles you take on. You’ll do this throughout the program’s curriculum and during the required immersion course, which you can complete in your own community. If you’re local to Montgomery, however, you might want to join a hospital-sponsored cohort. With this option, you’ll complete some of the required work for this accredited online nursing degree program at a partner hospital.
Average Tuition & Fees: $15,175/yr
Score: 77.3

University of North Carolina Charlotte Online Nursing Degree Programs
The all-around strong curriculum at UNC – Charlotte makes this affordable online BSN program a solid choice for any nurse.

28. University of North Carolina-Charlotte

Online RN to B.S.N. Completion Program

Website
UNC – Charlotte offers one of the most affordable options for North Carolina residents on this online RN BSN degree ranking. Resident or not, however, anyone can benefit from the broad curriculum, which includes classwork in both larger industry trends (such as informatics and coordinated care) and in specific skills you need to best treat your patients (such as using research appropriately and making sound clinical decisions). Plus, a required “Issues in Cultural Health” class will keep you updated on timely issues that could affect your practice. Classes begin twice yearly, and you can complete your degree in just 12 months with full-time study.
Average Tuition & Fees: 13348.5/yr
Score: 78.2

Winston Salem State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
Unique electives and a great ROI define Winston-Salem’s top online nursing degree program.

27. Winston-Salem State University

Online RN to BSN

Website
Curious how your previous credits will transfer to Winston-Salem State? Check out the school’s ample resources to evaluate your credits, which can help you decide if the program is a good fit based on your prior experience. If it is, you’ll appreciate the way this cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing provides great value for your dollar. In fact, the school is one of the top five in the state for return on investment. The flexible program lets you opt for full- or part-time study, and you can customize your degree through targeted electives. For example, you might take a class in finance for nurses or one in global health nursing.
Average Tuition & Fees: 10859.5/yr
Score: 78.6

Northwestern State University of Louisiana Online Nursing Degree Programs
NSULA’s affordable online RN BSN degree requires no time at the school’s Shreveport campus.

26. Northwestern State University of Louisiana

Online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Website
Before applying to the Northwestern State University of Louisiana read through its helpful documentation on what you need to succeed as an online learner. The self-assessment includes questions about both your technical capabilities and your learning style, so you can make sure earning an accredited RN to BSN online makes sense for you. Once you enroll, you’ll find a 100% online program that lets you work in your own community to complete both theory and clinical requirements for the degree. Plus, faculty will work with you to develop a plan of study that meets your career goals and takes advantage of your previous professional experience.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,014/yr
Score: 78.7

Arizona State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
At ASU, you’ll find one of the top online RN to BSN programs when it comes to innovative thinking.

25. Arizona State University

Online Nursing – RN to BSN Degree

Website
For one of the most forward-thinking options on this bachelor of science in nursing online ranking, look to Arizona State University. The university has earned accolades from U.S. News as one of the nation’s most innovative colleges – a distinction that carries over to the BSN program (which resides in the aptly named College of Nursing and Health Innovation). Unsurprisingly, then, ASU’s nursing degree prizes big-picture thinking, with courses such as “The Art of Nursing” and “Innovation in Nursing.” You’ll also learn how to evaluate research and apply it to your nursing practice, and a required capstone asks you to synthesize what you’ve learned as you prepare to take on new responsibilities at work.
Average Tuition & Fees: 11779.5/yr
Score: 78.7

University of North Alabama Online Nursing Degree Programs
The accredited online bachelor’s degree in nursing at UNA readies you for graduate study.

24. University of North Alabama

Online RN to BSN

Website
All online learners can take advantage of in-state tuition at the University of North Alabama, meaning you’ll pay just over $7,100 in tuition for your BSN. But you won’t sacrifice quality with this cheap online RN to BSN program. In fact, the school supports a team of dedicated professionals who want to help you succeed. The fully online curriculum will also prepare you for success by shaping you into a leader who works well with other care providers and can effectively employ technology to improve healthcare services. It’s also a great foundation if you want to pursue graduate study in the field, thanks to a focus on research and broader issues and concepts in the nursing profession.
Average Tuition & Fees: $11,282/yr
Score: 79.5

National University Online Nursing Degree Programs
You’ll study quality improvements as you earn National’s accredited RN to BSN online degree.

23. National University

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) – RN Completion

Website
At the veteran-founded National University, you’ll find one of the top online BSN programs for service members and their families. Support for all branches of the military is baked into National’s ethos, and its support of the GI Bill makes earning an online BSN extremely affordable for service members. But no matter your background, you’ll benefit from the school’s patient-centered nursing program, which prepares you for work in numerous healthcare settings. Coursework also focuses on leadership, evidence-based practice, and informatics, and a required “Quality Improvement” class and related practicum prepare you to solve problems while ensuring patient safety and quality of care.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,016/yr
Score: 79.6

University of Central Missouri Online Nursing Degree Programs
The cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing at UCM includes concentrated, skills-focused practica.

22. University of Central Missouri

Online Registered Nurse to Baccalaureate

Website
The University of Central Missouri’s BSN program offers no shortage of benefits. On top of affordable tuition, the program also provides generous professional experience credit opportunities, and accelerated courses that you can complete entirely online. Plus, the school offers some of the most targeted practicum classes on this online RN BSN degree ranking. For example, after hearing classroom lectures on leadership and management, you’ll take those lessons into the field as you complete a practicum with a specific focus on those topics. Another bonus? With full-time study, you can earn this BSN in just one year.
Average Tuition & Fees: 10544.5/yr
Score: 79.7

University of Nebraska Medical Center Online Nursing Degree Programs
The top online BSN program at UNMC has plenty to offer most students.

21. University of Nebraska Medical Center

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
At the University of Nebraska Medical Center, the RN to BSN degree includes a community health-centered clinical rotation requirement. But if you happen to already be a community health nurse, instructors will work with you to find an alternative placement that expands your skills in new directions. It’s that sort of individualization and commitment to growth that helps UNMC’s BSN degree stand out from the crowd. It’s also a great choice if you want to take both asynchronous and live classes. A generous credit transfer policy and a focus on developing strong critical thinking strategies only further the appeal of UNMC’s accredited online nursing degree program.
Average Tuition & Fees: $18,158/yr
Score: 80.6

Ohio University Online Nursing Degree Programs
You can choose among eight start dates when you enroll in OU’s affordable bachelor of science in nursing online.

20. Ohio University

Online RN to BSN

Website
Ohio University has one of the most flexible programs on this RN to BSN online ranking. Not only does it offer an impressive eight start dates per year, but the school places no age limits on its credit transfer policy – meaning you won’t have to duplicate general education classes even if you took them years ago. The flexibility even extends to your tuition: An optional payment plan can ease your financial burden. On the curriculum front, OU offers a CCNE-accredited course of study that prizes nursing excellence, with coursework in management, diversity, and population-specific care. One potential drawback? The program is only authorized in 10 states, so you’ll want to check that list before applying.
Average Tuition & Fees: 15863.5/yr
Score: 80.6

Texas Womans University Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online RN to BSN program ranking, TWU stands out for its unique “challenge exam” option.

19. Texas Woman’s University

Online RN-BS Program

Website
Registered nurses with plenty of experience might want to give Texas Women’s University a look. Not only do the program’s requirements change depending on your previous education, but you can take advantage of “challenge exams” to test out of certain classes if you meet specific qualifications. For example, you can challenge “Promoting Wellness in the Aging Family” if you’re certified as a gerontological nurse or have spent a significant amount of time working in that field. This unique option is a great way to maximize your time as you complete the school’s cheap online BSN program.
Average Tuition & Fees: $12,218/yr
Score: 80.8

University of West Georgia Online Nursing Degree Programs
The affordable online nursing degree program at UWG approaches nursing as a holistic practice.

18. University of West Georgia

Online RN to Bachelor of Science Degree Program (RN to BSN)

Website
Dedicated faculty and small classes help make the most of your experience in the University of West Georgia’s top online RN to BSN program. Although you’ll take most of your courses asynchronously, you’ll still develop collegial and professional relationships with peers from myriad backgrounds – starting with a required online orientation before you begin courses. Faculty members will work with you to design clinical components that complement your professional experiences, but the curriculum in general focuses on nursing as a holistic profession, teaching you to work with a patient’s “mind, body, and spirit” to deliver effective and personalized care.
Average Tuition & Fees: $11,430/yr
Score: 80.8

Fort Hays State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online RN BSN degree ranking, FHSU shines for its comprehensive curriculum and ease of scheduling.

17. Fort Hays State University

Online RN to BSN Program

Website
The well-developed “Virtual College” at Fort Hays State University has plenty to offer: affordability, military-friendliness, and dedicated advisors, to name but a few features. So it’s no wonder the school’s cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing earns a spot on this list. The program welcomes new nursing students during fall, spring, or summer, and you can finish the degree in just three semesters. Courses last eight weeks, and FHSU makes each required class available during every semester, so you don’t have to worry about scheduling. The curriculum touches on evidence-based practice, community care, and more, and you’ll complete a quality improvement practicum to gain experience in this critical subject.
Average Tuition & Fees: $9,655/yr
Score: 81

Texas A M University Corpus Christi Online Nursing Degree Programs
The affordable RN to BSN online at TAMU – Corpus Christi asks you to consider the role of nursing in multiple contexts.

16. Texas A & M University-Corpus Christi

Online Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing – RN to BSN

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Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi wants to attract nursing professionals from diverse backgrounds – including those that are historically underrepresented – in order to build a globally minded and service-driven healthcare system. If those lofty goals appeal, check out the school’s accredited bachelor of science in nursing online. Courses introduce you to leadership, community health, and other concepts, while asking you to consider the role of a nurse as both an educator and research consumer. And with plenty of scholarships available, you can easily reduce the cost of this already affordable degree.
Average Tuition & Fees: 13340.5/yr
Score: 81.2

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Online Nursing Degree Programs
A blend of asynchronous and live classes make up the affordable online RN BSN degree at TTUHSC.

15. Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

Online RN to BSN Undergraduate Program

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Whereas some top online nursing degree programs ask you to plan your course path, Texas Tech has two ready-made degree plans – one for part-time study and one for full-time study – making this a great choice for students who like following a pre-set schedule. But if life gets in the way of your studies, don’t worry; the school’s dedicated faculty can help re-adjust your courses to accommodate you. No matter how you earn the degree, you’ll benefit from a mix of asynchronous and live classes, which include online discussion boards, web conferences, and virtual chats. You’ll also have a chance to work on both individual and group projects to hone the collaboration skills you’ll need as a professional nurse.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,969/yr
Score: 82

Mississippi University for Women Online Nursing Degree Programs
You can earn MUW’s cheap online bachelor’s degree in nursing either 100% online or as a hybrid program.

14. Mississippi University for Women

Online RN-to-BSN Advanced Placement Option

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If you want to incorporate on-campus classes as you earn an affordable bachelor of science in nursing online, check out the Mississippi University for Women. The school offers its BSN both fully online and as a hybrid program, and the latter option is surprisingly flexible: You’ll work with individual instructors on a per-course basis to schedule meetings at the Tupelo campus according to your schedule. In terms of the curriculum, MUW introduces you to professional nursing in the context of research, teaching you how to incorporate evidence-based practices into your work. You’ll also take a few “Professional Perspectives” courses, which offer a deep dive into specific topics like management, community nursing, and complex health situations.
Average Tuition & Fees: 11349.5/yr
Score: 84.8

University of Memphis Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online BSN program ranking, the U of M offers some of the best scholarships for Tennessee residents.

13. University of Memphis

Online RN-BSN Program

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At first glance, earning an accredited RN to BSN online through the University of Memphis might not seem like the most affordable decision. But there are plenty of ways to reduce the cost of the school’s tuition. For example, you can apply to one of the many targeted College of Nursing scholarships (Tennessee residents in particular qualify for several options). Plus, the school has a generous policy when it comes to credit for prior learning, letting you demonstrate proficiency with an exam or a portfolio, as appropriate. Regardless of how you finance your education, you’ll benefit from the flexible curriculum, which prizes experiential learning through targeted practica.
Average Tuition & Fees: $14,981/yr
Score: 85.8

University of Texas Medical Branch Online Nursing Degree Programs
You can shape the cheap bachelor of science in nursing online at UTMB to meet your personal goals.

12. University of Texas Medical Branch

Online RN-BSN Degree

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At the University of Texas Medical Branch, you’ll find instructors who will help tailor your learning experience to meet your career goals. For example, as you move through this top online BSN program, you can satisfy clinical requirements in settings that reflect your professional area of interest. You’ll also develop a “leadership framework” to shape your practice, and a team of dedicated faculty members and advisors will be on hand to offer guidance. Perhaps the only downside is that the program only offers a single fall start date, so you’ll need to submit your application during the preceding spring.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,722/yr
Score: 86

Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing Allied Health Online Nursing Degree Programs
For a globally oriented affordable online nursing degree program, look to NMC.

11. Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health

Online RN to BSN

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With its accelerated five-week courses, Nebraska Methodist College sets itself apart on this online RN BSN degree ranking. As you might expect, these short classes are quite intensive, which is why you’ll take a week off between each class. In terms of its curriculum, NMC offers one of the more globally-minded programs on this list. That’s because you’ll need to complete the school’s Educated Citizen Core Curriculum, gen ed requirements that ask you to think critically about your role as a global citizen. The nursing courses also reflect this priority through a strong focus on global and community health. Even the required capstone asks you to explore your role as a healthcare professional within larger socio-political systems.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,802/yr
Score: 86.9

University of Texas at El Paso Online Nursing Degree Programs
You can complete UTEP’s accredited RN to BSN online program in just two and a half semesters.

10. University of Texas at El Paso

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing: RN to BSN Option

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Encouraging evidence-based practice is at the heart of the University of Texas at El Paso’s BSN program. While earning this top online bachelor’s degree in nursing, you’ll build on your existing clinical experience through courses that underscore the importance of basing health care decisions on data-driven practices. You’ll also study key topics like informatics, management, and community-based care. Not only that, but a class focused on the RN-to-BSN transition will make sure you’re ready for life (and work) post-graduation. The best part? It all takes place entirely online and allows you to graduate in just two and a half semesters.
Average Tuition & Fees: 13835.5/yr
Score: 87.2

South Dakota State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
The cheap online RN BSN degree at SDSU prepares you for work in rural environments.

9. South Dakota State University

Online RN to BSN

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South Dakota State University’s BSN program is accommodating and flexible from start to finish. During enrollment, you’ll choose either a three- or five-semester path while transferring in up to 90 community college credits. Plus, you can start the program even if you haven’t completed all the necessary prerequisite courses. Once you’re enrolled, you’ll find an accredited online RN to BSN program that includes a special focus on underserved populations, including those in rural areas. And if you intend to pursue graduate study, SDSU is, of course, happy to accommodate your needs. For example, they’ll let you substitute two MSN-level courses into the curriculum to give you a jumpstart on earning your master’s degree.
Average Tuition & Fees: $978,7.5/yr
Score: 87.2

Thomas Edison State University Online Nursing Degree Programs
Graduates of TESU’s affordable online RN to BSN program can demonstrate proficiency with a detailed portfolio.

8. Thomas Edison State University

Online RN to BSN

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With its rolling admissions, completely flexible scheduling, and affordable tuition, Thomas Edison State University’s cheap online nursing degree program should meet any student’s needs. And if you’re trying to fit your studies into an already busy schedule, you’ll appreciate the school’s generous completion policy: You can take as much time as you need as long as you earn at least three credits each year. Plus, you’ll never need to visit the New Jersey campus, and you can communicate with your advisor on the phone or online. In the end, you’ll graduate with a comprehensive portfolio that showcases your work and includes “artifacts” from most of your courses.
Average Tuition & Fees: $7,851/yr
Score: 87.4

University of Alabama Huntsville Online Nursing Degree Programs
UAH offers one of the best options in Alabama on this RN to BSN online ranking.

7. University of Alabama-Huntsville

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing for Registered Nurses

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The University of Alabama in Huntsville sets its nursing students up for success by providing a curriculum grounded in relevant, up-to-date industry topics. Indeed, this accredited online bachelor’s degree in nursing touches on all the latest technologies, from communication tools to healthcare information systems. You’ll also study current healthcare delivery methods and policy to ensure you understand the larger context for your work. Finally, you’ll practice research and analysis skills so that you can use evidence-based models to provide the best care possible to a variety of patient populations. And you can tackle all this in just 12 months of full-time study, making this both an affordable and speedy program.
Average Tuition & Fees: $15,227/yr
Score: 87.9

Western Governors University Online Nursing Degree Programs
WGU’s top bachelor of science in nursing online incorporates a community health focus.

6. Western Governors University

Online B.S. Nursing (RN to BSN)

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For a cheap online BSN program that prizes competency over time spent in the classroom, look to Western Governors University. The school’s assessment-based approach means you can demonstrate your knowledge whenever you’re ready instead of waiting until the end of each course. In addition, this top school for adult learners incorporates field experiences that let you flex your skills in your own community. Most importantly, you’ll work in a community health setting to identify and assess a “primary prevention topic” relevant to that location. The degree also includes coursework in research, enabling you to apply the latest evidence-based approaches in your own practice.
Average Tuition & Fees: $7,020/yr
Score: 88.6

Pennsylvania State University World Campus Online Nursing Degree Programs
On this online bachelor’s degree in nursing ranking, Penn State shines for its skills-based, career-boosting certificates.

5. Pennsylvania State University-World Campus

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing

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Students who want to make the most out of their accredited online RN to BSN program will appreciate the certificate options at Penn State’s World Campus. Here, you can augment your BSN with a certificate in Nursing Forensics, Nursing Informatics, or Nursing Management, helping you stand out from the competition as you move ahead in your career. Even if you don’t pursue a certificate, you’ll still benefit from Penn State’s CCNE-accredited curriculum, which bolsters the standard BSN coursework with lessons in unique – but highly topical – subjects. Indeed, you’ll be hard-pressed to find courses like “Violence and the Impact on Society” and “Ethical Challenges in Health Care Informatics” elsewhere.
Average Tuition & Fees: $13,678/yr
Score: 89.3

Northern Arizona University Online Nursing Degree Programs
The affordable online nursing degree program at NAU lets you move through course material at your own pace.

4. Northern Arizona University

Online RN-BSN Program

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Like many programs on this bachelor of science in nursing online ranking, Northern Arizona University designed its degree specifically for working adults. And nowhere is this clearer than in the school’s unique Personalized Learning program, which utilizes a competency-based approach so you can move through the program at your own pace. For experienced nurses, this format makes it easy to essentially test out of classes that cover material they’ve already mastered on the job. On the other hand, this approach also ensures that you have plenty of time to familiarize yourself with new concepts before moving onto more advanced material.
Average Tuition & Fees: 12830.5/yr
Score: 90.3

University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Online Nursing Degree Programs
UW – Oshkosh has one of the top online BSN programs for motivated students in search of a rigorous degree.

3. University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

Online Accelerated Bachelor’s to BSN

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Students looking for an accelerated, accredited online RN BSN degree should seriously consider attending UW – Oshkosh. Faculty recommend that students do not attempt to work while earning this degree because of its rigorous curriculum and fast pace. In fact, you should expect to spend eight to 12 hours on classwork each day. But if you can make the commitment, you’ll finish this degree in a single year – including all clinical rotations. Those rotations help Oshkosh stand out on this list, as they provide experiential learning opportunities with specialty populations and settings, including clinical health, obstetrics, mental health, and more.
Average Tuition & Fees: 11330.5/yr
Score: 92.4

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Online Nursing Degree Programs
The cheap online RN to BSN program at SIUE helps prepare students to succeed as distance learners.

2. Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville

Online Accelerated RN to BS in Nursing

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If you’re hesitant about taking online classes, give Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville a look. The school works to ensure your success by making all new admits take an informational immersion course on how to navigate Blackboard, utilize SIUE’s virtual resources, and adopt effective online learning strategies. Beyond this, SIUE also shines for its intensive, population-specific classes. As you complete this affordable RN to BSN online program, you’ll take deep-dives into the needs of young/middle-age adults, older adults, children, childbearing women, and more. By the time you graduate, you’ll have all the skills you need to treat each of your patients with care that’s relevant to their stage of life.
Average Tuition & Fees: $10,495/yr
Score: 96.3

Indiana Wesleyan University Online Nursing Degree Programs
Indiana Wesleyan offers one of the best options for Christian nurses on this online RN-BSN degree ranking.

1. Indiana Wesleyan University

Online RN-BSN Program

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With its cohort model, fast-track scheduling opportunities, and optional on-campus classes, Indiana Wesleyan University offers one of the top online nursing degree programs in the country. Note that residents of Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio are eligible for a blended delivery program, which could be a great choice for students who want occasional face time with their instructors and fellow students. Regardless of how you earn this degree, you’ll appreciate its affordable tuition, leadership-based curriculum, and impressive seven annual start dates. And if you’re a Christian student, you’ll enjoy the opportunity to take courses that incorporate your faith, such as “Nursing from a Christian Worldview” and “Parish/Faith Community Nursing.”
Average Tuition & Fees: $9,604/yr
Score: 100

Thanks for reading our ranking of the 50 top cheap bachelor’s of science in nursing online!

Sources:
IPEDS Data Center
College Navigator
CCNE

Published April 2018

See Also:
10 Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s Degrees