An Explanation of Registered Nurse Education Costs

Registered nurse education costs are moderately expensive; however, it is possible to get scholarships, grants and student loans. The actual cost of the program will depend on the course taken, the university that offers the program and the city in which the school is located.

Cost of Education for a Registered Nurse

Tuition and clinical fees together make up the total cost of nursing education while the tuition fee for a two year nursing course in a community college is just $1400, the clinical fees can are considerably higher at $4000 plus per semester. For a bachelorís course the students end up paying almost $7000 to $8000 in clinical fees while the tuition is still lower at just $2000 to $3000 per semester. Apart from this, students will also have to incur the cost of books, parking, basic living expenses and housing in case of out of town colleges. The cost of training at a hospital affiliated nursing schools can be higher at $55,000for resident student and over $100,000 for non residents.

Bridge Programs

Bridge programs are offered in two categories: the LPN to RN program and also a bridge course for students who want to go for a Master's program with just an associate's degree in hand. The LPN to RN program is exceptionally popular due to the gradual phasing out of the LPN degrees. The bridge program is cheaper at $75 per semester hour with a total of 72 hours. This brings the cost of the course to $4,983. The program takes two years to complete which is the same as a traditional associateís degree course in registered nursing.

The Two Year Associate's Program

Most junior and technical colleges along with career institutes offer the two year associate's program. After completion, students can take the national licensing exam and continue working towards a bachelor's or a master's degree. The registered nursing program cost of this course is $74 on average. With a total of 72 hours per semester, the total cost of the semester is $5,342. The fee does not include books, uniforms and lab charges which can increase the cost by another couple of hundred dollars. Students may be charged for field visits as well.

The Four Year Bachelor's Degree

This is among the most popular nursing courses today. These programs are offered at community colleges as well as many eminent universities across the country. The course is open to students who possess an associate's degree or have been through an LPN-RN bridge course. The registered nursing program cost of this course is $74.20 per semester hour with a total of 120 hours. So, the cost of the program comes to $8,904. However, a traditional four year college may charge significantly more at $139 to $150 per semester hour, which would double the cost of the degree. The fee does not include books, uniforms or lab charges.

While the cost of the course is an important factor, students should choose a school based on its reputation, the subjects it offers, specialization prospects and the extent of practical training included in the course.