Accelerated BSN

How Does an Accelerated Nursing Program Work?

ABSN Program? - Notepad with stethoscope on a table

There are many different pathways to earning your nursing degree, but which nursing program is the right one for you? If you already have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree or at least 60 college credits, an accelerated path may be your best choice. So, how does an accelerated nursing program work? Well, we’re glad you asked.

Accelerated nursing programs allow you to leverage your previous education and/or non-nursing degree so you can earn your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree sooner—sometimes in as few as 16 months.

What Is an ABSN Program?

An ABSN, or Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing, is a program offering a faster path to nursing that compresses a traditional four-year nursing program into 12, 16 or 24 months without compromising quality. ABSN programs require a lot of dedication and commitment since they are on a much tighter schedule.

An ABSN program is a great choice for people who want to fast-track their path toward nursing, such as:

  • Second-degree students
  • Those looking to switch careers
  • People who have already completed at least 60 non-nursing college credits
  • Students who want an online or hybrid nursing experience

If you fit into one of those groups, this blog can help you learn more about ABSN programs and help you decide if an accelerated nursing program is right for your lifestyle.

While previous education is the first step in determining whether this program is a fit, there are other factors that you will need to consider in order to enroll and be successful.

Below, we will explore how an accelerated program works, the benefits it can provide to students with previous non-nursing college experience, and what is needed to thrive as an accelerated BSN student.

We will look at Felician University’s hybrid Accelerated BSN program in New Jersey as an example. By the end of this blog post, you will have the tools to determine if an accelerated nursing program is the right choice for you.

How Does an Accelerated BSN Program Work?

Many accelerated nursing programs, like Felician University’s 16-month online-based ABSN program in Parsippany and 18-month on-ground ABSN program in Rutherford, use a comprehensive learning model that combines three major components.

In as few as 16 months, this comprehensive learning model provides you with the experience you need to graduate and prepares you to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

Nursing students in lab coats

Because Felician University’s ABSN program includes online and on-site learning, you must live in or near Parsippany, New Jersey or Rutherford, New Jersey, in order to enroll.

When you enroll in an ABSN program, you can expect to complete online courses, hands-on labs, and clinical rotations. Let’s look at what each of those can encompass.

Online and Onsite Courses

The online portion of Felician University’s hybrid Accelerated BSN program features an interactive e-Learning platform to deliver the core nursing coursework and fast-track your path to a BSN.

You can also take courses on campus in Rutherford with the 18-month On-Ground ABSN program Felician offers as well.

Hands-On Labs

Following the core coursework, you will then turn the nursing fundamentals and theories learned online into psychomotor skills through hands-on labs at one of Felician University’s state-of-the-art ABSN sites.

Clinical Rotations

Once you complete your online nursing theory and practice it in person during lab, you will put what you learn into real-life practice through diverse clinicals at top healthcare facilities in the New Jersey area.

Now that you know how an ABSN program works, you may be wondering why it’s a good option and what the benefits may be.

Put your knowledge into action - woman studying with book and highlighter

The education you get directly affects the kind of nurse you’ll become. Read more here.

The Benefits of an ABSN Program

The benefits of an ABSN program include access to a life-changing career, a comfortable salary, and more. An accelerated nursing program has the potential to take your career and your life in a different direction, helping you grow and influence positive change.

It also opens opportunities that may have otherwise been unavailable to you. While it’s true there are intense months of studying, the results are incredible. Let’s look at what benefits an ABSN program like the one offered at Felician University can offer you.

1. ABSN Programs Offer Accelerated Outcomes

An accelerated nursing program is especially worth it if you are looking to earn a degree sooner. At Felician University, the ABSN program not only offers you a quality Bachelor of Science in Nursing, but it also offers you the ability to earn that degree in as few as 16 months.

Why is that important? The main reason is because you can enter the workforce sooner and start on your new future as a nurse. You’ll also be able to make a difference and help close the nursing shortage currently faced nationwide by providing life-saving care sooner.

Traditional on-campus programs can take up to four years to complete. An accelerated, 16-month option is an amazing opportunity for students who already have a previous degree in a non-nursing field to start their new career faster.

2. ABSN Programs Provide Flexibility

Flexibility is another huge benefit of an accelerated nursing program. This is not only because an ABSN program provides you with flexibility in your education, but also your future as a nurse.

Educational Flexibility

While the ABSN program’s online curriculum is accelerated and rigorous, it does allow you the flexibility of studying whenever or wherever works best for you. Of course, you still must finish assignments by the due dates set by the instructor.

Career Flexibility

Nursing is not like a traditional 9 to 5 job. There is more flexibility in your work hours and schedule. For instance, hospitals usually have different shift options, so you can work longer shifts or shorter shifts. Some shifts may also be more lucrative than others.

3. ABSN Programs Present More Opportunity

Felician University’s ABSN program in Parsippany, New Jersey and Rutherford, New Jersey, provide you with more opportunities in your nursing education and career. How so?


The ABSN program is accessible, offering three start dates each year in January, May, and August. That means you don’t have to wait to enroll, because there are more spots available for qualified students.

Supplying education. Meeting demand - Three nurses walking down a hall

Are ABSN programs generally hard to get into? Yes. Learn why the Felician ABSN program prioritizes accessibility.

Diverse Clinical Experience

Felician University’s accelerated nursing program provides you with diverse clinical rotations in top area hospitals, so you can gain first-hand experience in a variety of practice areas, including areas such as:

  • Acute care
  • Adult health
  • Intensive care
  • Maternity care
  • Mental health
  • Pediatrics
  • Long-term care
  • Public health and disaster management

4. ABSN Programs Make More Career Options Possible

Earning your BSN and becoming a registered nurse does not mean you can only work in a hospital. There are many different organizations in need of nurses with a BSN, such as cruise ships, military bases, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, physician offices, and school systems.

Felician nursing student

Plus, there are more than 100 nursing specialties you can choose from once you graduate from an accelerated nursing program. You can pursue a job as a holistic nurse, forensic nurse, parish nurse, school nurse, or trauma nurse.

Earning your Bachelor of Science in Nursing also serves as the first step toward furthering your education, giving you the chance to pursue an advanced degree as a nursing educator or nurse practitioner.

What Traits Do I Need to Succeed as an Accelerated Nursing Student?

In order to be successful and get the most out of an accelerated nursing program like Felician University’s ABSN, there are certain traits that are helpful to possess. So, as you research whether an accelerated nursing program is right for you, it’s important to consider these traits of successful accelerated nursing students.

Full-Time Dedication

In order to be successful in an accelerated nursing program like Felician University’s ABSN, it is best that you can dedicate yourself, full-time, to your studies. For this reason, we do not recommend working while in the program.

Organizational Skills

Because this is an accelerated program, you build upon your learning quickly, so it is essential to stay on top of your work. If you are diligently organized—whether by using a day planner, phone reminders, or whatever works best—then an accelerated nursing program may be right for you.


If you are someone who doesn’t give up and pushes ahead even when times get tough, you should know that accelerated nursing programs provide an environment where hard workers can thrive.

Critical Thinking Skills

Are you a problem solver who knows how to think on your feet? Critical thinking skills can help you earn your BSN and become a successful nurse.

Passion and Confidence

Do you know for sure if you want to become a nurse? It is important to feel confident about entering this new profession. Before enrolling, try to really consider and understand why you want to enter the field of nursing.

If your answer is only because you want to try something new, this may not be your fit. If, however, this is what you feel you have been called to do and you can help others, then an accelerated nursing program is worth it.

Find Your Fit with the Felician ABSN Program

If you like what you have read so far and want to learn more about leveraging your previous education to earn a BSN in as few as 16 months, contact our admissions team at Felician University’s ABSN program today.

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