RN to BSN Programs in Michigan: Explore Online & Campus Options

With the number of registered nurses in Michigan expected to grow faster than in the rest of the U.S., RN to BSN programs will be in high demand. Find out how these flexible programs help you develop the skills you need to advance your nursing career while working around your other responsibilities.

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Quinn Dannies

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Because the field of nursing is so complex, more and more employers require their registered nurses to hold a BSN to be hired or earn promotions. By working toward your BSN through an online program, you can set yourself up for future opportunities. If you’re already an RN, Michigan offers many great RN to BSN bridge programs to help you take the next step. In addition, the growing job market in the state means you’ll be in demand as soon as you graduate. Michigan is projected to have more than 110,000 registered nurses by 2030—an 8% increase.

This guide helps you prepare for an RN to BSN program in Michigan. Read on to learn about some of the best programs available and get answers to common questions about RN to BSN online programs in Michigan. Plus, get a peek at how your salary can jump once you have your BSN.

Nursing School Spotlights: Best RN to BSN Programs in Michigan

There are lots to consider in your quest for an online RN to BSN program in Michigan that matches your needs and ambitions. To help you, we’ve considered accreditation, affordability, academics, and specializations to identify some of Michigan’s best RN to BSN programs. Below, we’ve highlighted three excellent options to get you started on your search.

Grand Valley State University’s online RN to BSN program strongly emphasizes community impact and health equity. This focus prepares you to compassionately and effectively care for patients from various backgrounds. The school is also notable for its small class sizes and individualized learning. This feature is significant in online programs, where it can be challenging to meaningfully engage with your professors and classmates.

Unlike many RN to BSN programs that only accept licensed nurses, Grand Vally State University’s program is also open to aspiring nurses who have completed their associate degree but haven’t received their RN license. Additionally, this school is one of the few programs in Michigan that offers the option for synchronous online learning.

Impressively, 98.9% of BSN graduates in 2018 passed their NCLEX exam. These results demonstrate how well this program prepares you for licensing requirements. In addition, this RN to BSN program in Michigan is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), so you can be sure you’re attending a reputable institution.

Michigan State University’s newly revised RN to BSN program offers one of the most up-to-date curricula in the state. The school has flexible options for transferring credits; students who have passed the NCLEX exam previously can receive 30 credits toward their degree completion. The program coordinates clinical experiences with local healthcare providers. Students complete their in-person hours close to home in a way that fits their busy schedules.

Michigan State’s program is exclusively for registered nurses. If you need to complete program prerequisites, the school has agreements with many local colleges to allow you to knock out these courses while participating in the RN to BSN program.

This program has all the hallmarks of quality. In 2018, 93% of Michigan State BSN graduates passed the NCLEX exam on their first try. This Michigan RN to BSN program is accredited by CCNE.

The online RN to BSN program at the University of Michigan-Flint is designed for working nurses. This fully online program allows you to work at your own pace on a flexible schedule. The curriculum focuses on high-demand skills, including evidence-based practice, patient care, leadership, and policy.

The program offers ample opportunities for transfer and continuing education students. Not only does it accept credits from your previous institution or degree, but it will also waive 15 credits if you already have your RN license. Most full-time students complete their studies within two years, but there are also options to earn additional leadership or case management certificates with a few extra courses.

The program recognizes that sometimes grades don’t tell the whole story. The University of Michigan–Flint has instituted an admissions program that, while accounting for GPA and test scores, also considers lived experience, special talents, and leadership qualities.

The program is accredited by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), so you can be sure you are receiving a quality education. More than 87% of nursing graduates from the University of Michigan–Flint pass their NCLEX exam.

FAQ: RN to BSN Programs in Michigan

How will an RN to BSN program in Michigan prepare me for more opportunities?

Earning an RN to BSN degree will help you level up your skills and offer new ways to approach nursing. RN to BSN programs recognize that you already have real-world experience, so these programs are designed to build on that. For example, most programs strongly emphasize leadership training and evidence-based treatment. Some, such as Eastern Michigan University, emphasize how recent cultural shifts affect patients and influence how you care for them. Other programs offer the opportunity to earn additional credentials. For example, RN to BSN students have the option to earn a case management certificate at the University of Michigan–Flint.

How long does it take to complete an RN to BSN program in Michigan?

The length of your RN to BSN program depends on a few factors, but full-time students typically complete their degree in one to two years. Online RN to BSN programs in Michigan generally accept all of your credits from your prior degree. However, depending on the graduation requirements, you may have to take additional general education courses, which can extend the length of your studies. Many students pursue their BSN part-time so they can balance their other work and family responsibilities. Part-time students typically complete an RN to BSN program in three or four years.

How affordable are RN to BSN programs in Michigan?

The cost of RN to BSN programs in Michigan varies widely. It’s important to remember that more expensive programs don’t necessarily mean better education. So, focus on your goals and what you can afford when choosing a program. In most cases, the cost per credit of online classes is the same as in-person costs, but you’ll save money on housing, commuting, meal plans, etc. To get an idea of the price range for online RN to BSN programs in Michigan, take a look at some examples below.

Is financial aid available to Michigan RN to BSN students?

You’ll have many opportunities to fund your education as an RN to BSN student in Michigan. You’ll be eligible for federal and state-level financial aid. Visit our financial aid guide for more information.

Most schools offer need- or merit-based scholarships. In addition, many scholarships are available specifically for nursing students like yourself in Michigan. Check into scholarships provided through the Michigan Board of Nursing and the Michigan Nurses Foundation. For a complete list of scholarships for nursing students, please take a look at our nursing scholarship guide.

What are the admissions requirements for RN to BSN programs in Michigan?

Admissions requirements for Michigan RN to BSN programs vary in their specifics. Some programs, such as the one at Michigan State University, require you to apply for general admission to the school. At others, such as Western Michigan University, you’ll apply directly through the program. Overall though, there are some universal truths when it comes to program requirements for an RN to BSN in Michigan:

  • GPA matters. GPA requirements tend to range between 2.5 and 3.0. Some programs, like Northwestern Michigan College, specify overall GPA requirements and requirements for specific courses.
  • Keep your license current. With a few notable exceptions, such as the University of Michigan-Flint, you won’t be able to enroll in an accelerated RN to BSN program without a current, unencumbered nursing license.
  • Pass your background check. Since you’ll be working with the public in a healthcare setting during your studies, many programs require nursing students to complete a background check before enrolling.

In Michigan, what should I look for in a quality RN to BSN program?

With so many options out there, you’ll want to be sure that you’re investing in a quality program. The good news is that there is plenty of unbiased information to help you choose. First, ensure the Michigan Board of Nursing authorizes your program by visiting its list of approved nursing programs.

Next, you’ll need to make sure that your program is accredited by either the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Selecting an accredited program ensures that it meets the criteria for quality education.

Once you’ve completed these steps, you will have weeded out some programs, but no doubt will still have plenty of great options. To narrow things down further, look up the school’s pass rates on the NCLEX-RN exam to get an idea of how prepared their graduates are. Lastly, consider what programs offer specialization or leadership training to assess how the curriculum aligns with your goals.

Inside Look at Online RN to BSN Degree Programs in Michigan

Because many online RN to BSN programs in Michigan are geared toward working nurses, fully online coursework is common. Generally, online RN to BSN classes are delivered asynchronously but are not self-paced. So while you’ll need to manage your deadlines and coursework, you typically won’t have to log on for lectures on a specific day or time.

Some schools operate on a hybrid system with online learning and in-person labs. Others don’t require any lab time on campus. However, in all cases, you’ll need to participate in in-person clinical nursing requirements. Some programs require that clinicals take place through a campus-affiliated program. Others partner with hospitals and community health organizations so that you complete your hours locally.

While the flexibility offered by online RN to BSN programs is incredibly valuable, it can present its own challenges. Time management can be more difficult when you don’t have to show up to a classroom for lectures. Because you’ll be interacting with your professors and classmates virtually, building meaningful connections can be harder. Also, burnout is a real concern if you work full-time while pursuing your BSN. None of these challenges are insurmountable, though. You’ll be ready to excel in your classes if you’re equipped with good information and a solid plan.

How Do I Go from Being an RN to a BSN Nurse in Michigan?

Once you’ve completed your RN to BSN degree from a program approved by the Michigan Board of Nursing, you are well on your way to becoming a licensed BSN nurse. After graduating, if you haven’t already done so, your next step is to take the NCLEX-RN exam. In Michigan, you must submit the following items to receive your registered nurse license:

  • An application fee of $208.80
  • A good moral character questionnaire
  • A certificate of completion for the mandatory human trafficking training program
  • A certificate of completion for the mandatory implicit bias training program
  • Documentation of your professional education
  • Social security number
  • Official transcripts from your nursing program
  • Your NCLEX-RN scores

Submit this information through Michigan’s online licensing system. After submitting your application, you’ll complete a background check. Once you’ve finished these steps, you should be all set to receive your license.

Nursing is a demanding profession. Advanced skills help you further your career or command a higher salary in your current position. Read on to learn about your career and salary prospects once you’ve completed your RN to BSN program in Michigan.

How much do Michigan RN to BSN graduates earn?

As of September 2022, the average annual salary of an RN in Michigan is $67,094. However, nurses with BSN degrees average salaries of $79,746. So, your commitment to an RN to BSN program will pay off. The table below shows that the average income range of nurses in Michigan is on par with the national average. Within the state, you’ll have a lot of flexibility in where you live and work. While the average salary range is generally higher in cities, there isn’t much variability between metro areas like Detroit and smaller towns like Battle Creek (population 50,000).

Location 10th Percentile Median 90th Percentile

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2021

What’s the job market like for BSN nurses in Michigan?

BSN nurses in Michigan have excellent career prospects. Currently, there are 102,480 registered nurses in Michigan. This number is expected to grow faster than average over the next 10 years. Compared to the rest of the U.S., where demand for nurses is expected to rise 6% by 2030, Michigan projects an 8% growth in the profession during the same period. As a BSN nurse, you’ll be well-positioned to take advantage of this growth. A 2019 AACN survey found that 94% of BSN nurses were employed within six months of graduation.