How Online Nursing Courses Work for ABSN Students

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Online nursing coursework is an essential element of Accelerated BSN tracks like the one offered through Mercer University. Designed to accommodate a variety of learning styles and delivered with flexibility in mind, students who take advantage of resources are well-positioned to succeed.

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In today’s educational environment, students have become used to online-based coursework as a standard element of many programs and curricula. However, that is often not the case when it comes to nursing. Most traditional nursing programs continue to offer coursework solely in person, but that does not mean that there is no place for online coursework in nursing education. For a Second Degree Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) track like the one offered through Mercer University, online learning plays a key part in the curriculum and allows students to earn a BSN degree in as few as 12 months.

Mercer’s ABSN track, located in Atlanta, Georgia, is designed to amplify the strengths of online nursing coursework while augmenting the experience with the in-person learning vital to a well-rounded curriculum. Below, we will explore more about what online learning is, how online learning works, ways you can succeed as a student with online-based coursework, and how an ABSN track could be the best option for your nursing education.

Mercer ABSN student sitting at desk using laptop

Can You Become a Nurse 100% Online?

Simply put, you cannot complete a comprehensive nursing education program, earn a BSN degree, or become a nurse solely online. Online nursing coursework is growing within nursing education, but, as many benefits as it has, it cannot replace the knowledge and experience gained from in-person labs and clinical rotations. Due to state and national board requirements, it is not possible for any accredited BSN track to operate 100% online.

However, online coursework allows blended ABSN tracks like Mercer’s to offer the benefits of online learning while still maintaining standards of excellence. Mercer has the oldest nursing program in the state of Georgia and consistently high national rankings.

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How Online Learning Works in Mercer’s ABSN Track

As an Accelerated BSN student at Mercer, you will engage with a 12-month, three-semester nursing curriculum comprised of three elements:

  • Online nursing lectures and coursework, able to be completed on a flexible basis (while meeting deadlines)
  • In-person skills and simulation labs, taken alongside fellow members of your cohort and overseen by experienced professors
  • Clinical rotations at top healthcare facilities in the Metro Atlanta area, guided by expert clinicians across a variety of practice specialties

Nursing labs and clinical rotations are vital to gaining the in-person experience and knowledge necessary to practice on real patients as a nurse. Nursing lectures and coursework provide foundational knowledge that will be essential to learning and understanding more advanced concepts and the rest of any nursing curriculum. When delivered online, the coursework within curricula like Mercer’s ABSN track can carry several distinct advantages.

Coursework to Suit a Variety of Learning Styles

Each nursing student will learn differently, and their preferred modes of learning might not be accommodated in a traditional classroom environment. To accommodate diverse learning styles while still delivering a top-class nursing education, different units and assignments have been designed with various learning styles in mind. Mercer ABSN students will work through material delivered with emphases on visual, aural, tactile, and social learning. This diverse approach means you will be able to engage with the material in different ways, with instructors and fellow cohort members available to discuss or study material together for an optimal learning experience.

Students in class

Flexibility to Form Your Study Schedule

Beyond catering to a variety of learning styles, taking nursing courses online also affords the opportunity to shape your personal study schedule around the times and places that work best for you. All students must meet course deadlines for assignments; however, you have the power to ensure you are working at an optimal time for comprehension and productivity, unlike traditional, in-person coursework. While you will still need to attend labs and clinicals in person, the flexibility offered through online learning can make it easier to succeed in a challenging Accelerated BSN track.

How to Succeed in Online Nursing Coursework

With a variety of learning styles and added flexibility, you already have a leg up when it comes to succeeding in nursing courses delivered online. Taking advantage of these benefits, as well as the resources available to you as a Mercer ABSN student, can help you on the path to your BSN degree.

Firstly, and perhaps most importantly, your instructors and fellow cohort members are available for questions and collaboration. Mercer’s instructors remain highly available and are invested in your success. Your fellow cohort members are looking for support just like you. Connect with them to learn more and get more out of your accelerated nursing education.

Beyond collaboration, organization is key when taking on this accelerated track. The increased flexibility offered through online learning means fewer opportunities for instructors and fellow students to remind you in-person about assignments, tests, and deadlines. With much material to cover in 12 months, you will need to keep your organizational skills sharp to succeed as an accelerated nursing student. With the right application of effort, organization, and collaboration, you can earn your BSN degree and enter a new career.

Mercer nursing student sitting outside using laptop

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Begin Working Toward Your BSN Degree Today

If you are ready to take on the challenge of an ABSN track—encompassing online nursing coursework as well as in-person labs and clinical rotations—speak with an enrollment counselor today. They will review your academic history and qualifications to help you determine the best course of action toward earning a BSN degree. With nurses needed now more than ever, there has never been a better time to enter this exciting, rewarding field.