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Accelerated Bachelor's Degree in Nursing


"Because of the RN to BS accelerated program, I was able to receive my BS in only four semesters! I was able to go to school full time without giving up work or spending time with my family. The acclerated program allowed me to focus on two classes at a time for seven weeks. Then, for the second half of the semester, I focused on the other two classes. I was also pleased with the flexibility of classes because Penn State offers day, evening, weekend, and online classes. Penn State Altoona has something to please everyone!"
- Kristen Devlin

"I feel the accelerated program is an easy way to obtain a bachelor's in nursing in a short amount of time. The work load, schedule, and travel fits with my life and that makes it very nice. My employer and Penn State worked together to help me obtain my BS and for all these reasons, i chose this program."
- Kirstin Ritchey

Program Overview

The Accelerated Bachelor of Science (ABS) Nursing program is a fast-track RN-to-B.S. completion program. The program curriculum is designed so that students spend only one day per week on campus and all course work is completed in three semesters, which allows those individuals who are limited by location and/or employment a greater opportunity to participate in the program. The cornerstone of the A.B.S. curriculum is providing a quality B.S. completion program in a format that is time efficient.

The compressed curriculum design incorporates a blend of in-class, web-enhanced, and online courses over seven-week sessions. Each student will have a plan of study developed and will have access to a variety of support and retention activities designed to ensure their success, including: the assignment of a mentor; computer support; tutoring and writing center services; access to Penn State’s course management system (ANGEL) and extensive library collection; and online or in-person access to project staff and faculty.

Benefits of Obtaining a BS:

Historically, bachelor's-prepared nurses demonstrate stronger professional-level skills such as communication, critical-thinking, problem-solving, leadership, professional integration and research/evaluation.

Employment opportunities
Hospitals preparing for Magnet statue employ a larger proportion of BS-RNs
Higher pay grades in some institutions (e.g.VA system pays BS higher pay scale)

Advanced education
BS required for admission to graduate level programs

Career advancement
Management opportunities (e.g. many institutions require BS)
Clinical specialty positions (e.g. critical care, life flight nursing)
Career ladder opportunities (e.g. VA system encourages AD to pursue BS)

Program Staff

Dr. Suzanne Kuhn, RN, Ph.D, CNE, Assistant Professor, Campus Coordinator for Nursing Programs, Penn State Altoona,