RN to MSN: Registered Nurse to MS in Nursing

The RN to MSN bridge program is designed for the registered nurse who has not completed his/her bachelor’s degree. Because the completion of the Master of Science in nursing is the entry-level pre-requisite to becoming an advanced practice nurse, many RNs will take advantage of an RN to MSN bridge in order to become nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists, or nurse-midwives. MSN holders may also become nurse educators, nurse managers, or nurse administrators. For RNs who do already hold a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing (BSN), many schools also offer BSN to MSN bridge programs.

How to Apply to a RN to MSN Program

In order to apply to a RN to MSN program, students must typically submit the following materials:

  • Application form with application fee
  • Transcripts from ASN program or hospital diploma program
  • Two to three letters of recommendation
  • Official scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), depending on the program requirements
  • Current RN license
  • Statement of Purpose that addresses your reason for choosing nursing as a profession and an interest in a particular specialty

RN to MSN Program Requirements

Program requirements vary according to the degree program, but students must typically complete the following:

  • Part One: Complete all undergraduate degree requirements to earn a BSN
  • Part Two: Complete all graduate coursework in a specialty area which may include:
    • Clinical Specialties: Acute Care, Adult Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Mid-Wifery, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
    • Administrative Specialties: Nurse Administrator, Nurse Educator, Nurse Informaticist, Nurse Manager
  • Part Three: Earn certification in area of practice and fulfill other assessment criteria determined by degree program

RN to MSN Bridge Programs