RN to MSN Programs in Arkansas

If you want more out of your career than you can get as a registered nurse, an RN to MSN program may be perfect for you. A master of science in nursing will give you the education you need to work as a nurse practitioner, nurse educator, and so much more. There are many RN to MSN programs in Arkansas, so you should have no trouble finding one to enroll in. Here is an overview of the program so you can decide if this is something you want to pursue.

Why Get an MSN?

The most common reason for going through with an MSN is because it has better job opportunities associated with it. You can secure a job faster with a good education, and you can start something that pays better than what you currently make. An advanced practice nurse in Arkansas earns an average of $86,101 a year, whereas a staff nurse only earns $55,807. Comparing salaries by degree, master’s students earn an average of $77,370 a year and associate’s degree graduates earn $58,562 a year. This difference is the driving force behind the move to grad school, and it may be all you need to enroll.

Job Prospects for MSN Degrees in Arkansas

Arkansas has a great need for educated nurses, especially in rural parts of the state. In particular, there is a high demand for MSN-prepared nurse administrators, certified registered nurse anesthetists, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse educators and certified nurse midwives. You can work in any one of these careers with a master of science in nursing. As long as you have a solid educational background before applying for work, you should have no trouble at all obtaining a job in Arkansas.

RN to MSN Program Overview

Every RN to MSN program is a little different based on the track of nursing you choose to learn about. Nurse practitioners, nurse educators, and nurse leaders all have different kinds of coursework to complete. Once you have selected the track you wish to follow, you may take classes like Community-Based Nursing Practice, Genetic Concepts, Health Assessment, Human Growth and Development, Theory and Research, and Transition to Graduate Studies. Again, this will vary by degree but should give you an idea of what is to come.

It can take anywhere from two to four years to complete an RN to MSN program. During that time, you will be working towards a licensure through the Arkansas State Board of Nursing, as well as national nursing certification. You can start applying for jobs after that, or you can go back to school for a post-master’s certificate or a doctorate.

Popular Arkansas RN to MSN Programs

With the number of RN to MSN programs in Arkansas, you may have a hard time finding the right one for you. The key here is to look for something that offers the career track you want and the scheduling options you need. Some common degrees in Arkansas include:

  • University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas has a great MSN program, with classes available online and on campus. You must complete the BSN program at this school before entering your master’s degree program, so prepare to take some extra classes to successfully transition your studies.
  • University of Central Arkansas: UCA offers a variety of tracks for nursing professionals, frm clinical nurse leadership to nurse practitioner studies. The school also has a past-master’s certificate program for those in need.
  • Arkansas State University: ASU has five different MSN programs to choose from, with fast-paced opportunities for nurses obtaining a second degree. The school also has an RN to BSN program so you can easily transition from BSN to MSN.

If you would prefer getting an education online, there are opportunities for you to do that as well. You could maintain your job as an RN and take classes whenever you’re not at work. That’s the great thing about an online nursing degree. You can take it wherever you are. Look over the RN to MSN programs available to you and see which one is the right fit for your needs.