Online Associate Degrees in Nursing

An online associate degree in nursing may provide individuals with the skills and training needed to provide medical care to patients ranging from infancy to adulthood. In this two-year program, students may learn how to administer medication and treatment, work closely with physicians, and help perform diagnostic tests. Program coursework may include select general education requirements as well as major-specific nursing courses including pharmacology, physiology, and fundamental nursing concepts.

Students who successfully complete an associate degree in nursing may seek entry-level employment or further their education by enrolling in a baccalaureate degree program. Associate-level graduates may find employment in medical clinics, hospitals, doctor’s offices, schools, and home health programs.

Program Overview

  • Prerequisite: High School Diploma or GED
  • Program Length: Two years to complete
  • Post-Grad Options: Entry-Level Employment or Bachelor’s Program
  • Projected Employment Growth: 26% (2010-2020)*

Program Coursework

The curriculum for associate-level nursing degree programs may include some general education required courses along with major nursing classes. These courses may teach students how to operate and monitor medical equipment, make quick decisions in an emergency situation, and record patient’s medical histories. Core online nursing coursework may include the following:

  • Microbiology
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Fundamental Concepts in Nursing
  • Human Growth and Development
  • Advanced Concepts in Nursing
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychology

Career Options

Associate-level graduates who achieve passing scores on nursing certification exams may seek opportunities in hospitals, doctor’s offices, hospice programs, assisted living facilities, and home health programs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nursing employment opportunities are projected to increase by 26% from 2010-2020.*

Possible careers include:

  • Emergency Department Nurse
  • Labor and Delivery Nurse
  • Home Health Nurse
  • Elder Care Nurse
  • Hospice Nurse

Continuing Education

Upon successful completion of an associate nursing degree program, students may have the opportunity to further their studies by enrolling in a four-year bachelor’s degree program. A baccalaureate degree in nursing may provide students with additional study in physical and social sciences, and may also train individuals for leadership roles in the nursing field. Employers may require an associate degree and passing nursing certification examination scores for entry-level nursing employment.

*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

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