If you are researching an RN to BSN online program, or any other nursing classes online, you’ve probably seen a whole lineup of schools promoting ease, convenience and all the cake you can eat. (Okay, we’re exaggerating on that last one.) But seriously, it can be difficult to make an informed decision in the giant buffet of online choices.
But not all RN to BSN online programs are created equal.
So how can you get a real feel for each program? How can you learn about the actual work you’d be doing in an online nursing class? Unfortunately you can’t just “test drive” an entire college program. The next best thing is to get a sneak peek at the curriculum.
Familiarize yourself with five RN to BSN online courses included in our program and start to understand how our curriculum stands out from the rest.
RN to BSN online courses to expect
1. Transcultural Nursing
Cultural differences create confusion in any industry. But in healthcare, assumptions and cultural misunderstandings can be dangerous. Even so, this important topic is often relegated to just a short unit in your average BSN curriculum, according to Dr. Colleen Koob, dean of the Rasmussen College School of Nursing. In a field where you are extremely likely to interact with people from different cultures, knowing how to respect your patients (and colleagues) can seriously impact the care you are able to provide.
“This course recognizes the importance of providing and incorporating cultural beliefs and the experience of clients, families and their healthcare professionals within care settings,” Koob explains. Topics in this course include communication styles, family roles, dietary preferences, safety and any other concerns associated with cultural beliefs and cultural norms.
“This course demonstrates the importance of incorporating a holistic approach in care,” Koob adds. Technical nursing skills are important, but being able to navigate cultural waters is an important part of providing well-rounded care.
2. Quality & Safety in Nursing Practice
This is one of the most impressive courses included the curriculum, according to Koob. “This program has a whole course devoted to what normally gets slipped in elsewhere,” she says.
Quality and safety are huge initiatives in nursing to ensure nurses are up to speed with best practices and providing care at a standardized level of competence. This course focuses on the current quality and safety issues in healthcare. Topics include quality and safety in nursing, QSEN competencies, Joint Commission standards and Magnet status.
In this core course, you’ll learn contemporary quality and safety standards along with best practices for quality and safety initiatives in healthcare settings. If it sounds dry, just remember all of the future patients whose lives will depend on you knowing the absolute best and safest way to care for them.
3. Introduction to Alternative Therapies
Many Americans use medical treatments that are not part of mainstream medicine, according to the National Library of Medicine. These treatments are often referred to as complementary or alternative medicine (CAM) and are gaining popularity. In fact, the Mayo Clinic reports that nearly 40 percent of adults reported using alternative therapies.
It’s never been more important for nurses to understand alternative therapies. But according to Koob, this type of course isn’t often included in a BSN program. For the cherry on top, some of the nursing faculty who teach this course are certified complementary therapists.
You’ll walk away with knowledge (and experience) of mind and body self-healing skills, multicultural alternative medicine theories, practice environments and interventions that can be safely integrated into nursing. You’ll also learn the philosophical assumptions of complementary and alternative approaches through critical thinking and the body of scientific evidence.
4. Nursing Informatics
Technology is an integral part of healthcare these days. Modern day healthcare professionals can expect to interact with plenty of technology on a regular basis.
This course integrates nursing science, information science, computer science and cognitive science, according to Koob. You’ll explore the use of information technology applications used by healthcare professionals to support the delivery of healthcare. You’ll also discuss the impact informatics has on efficiency, productivity, client safety and confidentiality in healthcare.
5. Nursing Capstone
The nursing capstone is the summit of your RN to BSN online program. You get to choose your project will have a mentor to help you execute it. The nursing capstone capitalizes on the quality and safety practices you already learned while taking things a step further.
“Students get the opportunity to apply theoretical and clinical experiences from previous nursing courses into a capstone experience,” Koob explains. “They promote patient-centered nursing care that encompasses quality and safety by planning and implementing a practicum experience.”
The practicum is a chance to integrate a project of your choice into hands-on practice. The purpose is to support the role transformation of students becoming practicing nurses, according to Koob.
Can you picture your nursing career?
Nursing school is no walk in the park and these RN to BSN online courses are no exception. But you can be confident all of the hard work will be worth it once you earn your BSN degree.
Now that you’ve gotten a behind-the-scenes look at the type of courses you can expect to take, it’s time to take a closer look at the program in its entirety. Get the details on program flexibility, cost, time commitment and more by visiting our RN to BSN program page.