Nursing (RN-BSN)

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Nursing (RN-BSN) Overview

Chatham’s online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) program is designed to offer working professional nurses knowledge and skills that can be immediately implemented into practice. Each online course is 7.5 weeks in length and there are no residency requirements throughout the program. Practice experience requirements are built into RN-BSN coursework. The RN-BSN program’s competency-based curriculum emphasizes leadership and person-centered care in an interactive format that provides students with a variety of networking opportunities. Earning an RN-BSN degree at Chatham will increase a student’s professional knowledge and nursing skills while adding mobility to career and future educational opportunities.

Degrees Offered
  • BS
Program School
Credits Required


The number of credits required to complete the RN-BSN program varies based on individual academic history. Please contact Admissions for your credit evaluation.

Cost Per Credit


Cost consists of program tuition (cost per credit times number of credits) as well as any applicable University and degree-specific fees.

Tuition-Free RN-BSN

UPMC Nurses

UPMC nurses can now earn their RN-BSN online from Chatham University tuition-free, which means you can earn a degree from a leader in online nursing education for over 20 years at no cost.

National Recognition


The RN-BSN, MSN, and DNP programs at Chatham University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.

Explore the RN-BSN Degree: 

Building upon a liberal arts foundation, the online RN-BSN Nursing program expands the student’s nursing knowledge, skills, and professional role. The program prepares the nursing graduate, based on the American Association Colleges of Nursing (AACN) The Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing Education (2021), to provide holistic, evidence-based nursing care, in health and in illness, with diverse populations in the ever-changing and complex healthcare environment.

  • You may transfer up to 90 credit hours of college level courses into the program. A minimum of 30 credits, including the 26 required core Nursing (RN-BSN, Online) credits, must be completed at Chatham University. Students who have earned a previous bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education and an Associate or Diploma degree from a nursing program, may transfer in 94 credits, pending a transcript review. 
  • The 26 required core Nursing (RN-BSN, Online) credits are offered through online courses and are delivered in an accelerated, 7.5 week format.
  • Explore areas related to health policy and finance, scholarship foundations in nursing, organizational quality improvement and safety, as well as contemporary issues in nursing. In addition, you will be completing course-related activities to fulfill the practice experience requirements.
  • New students are admitted twice per year in fall and spring.
  • Students may choose to take classes as a full-time or part-time student.
  • Chatham’s distinctive Nursing (Online RN-to-BSN) program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
Organizational Quality Improvement and Safety
This course will explore the nurse’s foundational role in leading a person-centered healthcare environment through quality improvement and safety measures in collaboration with the interprofessional team. Ethical and cultural considerations related to quality improvement will be analyzed.
Contemporary Issues in Nursing
This course will explore and analyze contemporary issues nurses experience in healthcare. Ethical, bioethical, and social issues will be highlighted. Students will develop skills related to self-care and resilience.
Scholarship Foundations in Nursing
This course will explore scholarly practice in nursing, including research and evidence-based practice. Literature will be searched to discover support for a student-identified contemporary nursing issue. Ethical principles of nursing research and evidence-based practice, particularly protection of human subjects, will be examined.

View Full Curriculum

Applicants must:

  • Complete the online application
  • Submit proof of completion of an RN degree (Associate or Diploma) with a minimum 2.0 GPA
  • Submit a copy of a current unencumbered RN license
  • Submit a copy of official transcripts of all completed post-high school education from all schools attended

Admission Materials may be submitted to:

Chatham University
Berry Hall/SCPS Admission
Woodland Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15232
Fax: 412-365-1609
Email Admissions

Additional Information

Articulation Agreements

Chatham University currently holds an articulation agreement with various institutions of higher education. 

Learn More about Articulation Agreements

Scholarship Information

A limited number of nursing scholarships may be available. For information about potential scholarships visit our Scholarships & Grants page. A FAFSA form must be completed and on file to be considered for scholarships. To fill out the FAFSA, please visit the FAFSA website (school code: 003244).

State Restrictions for Online Learning

Chatham University requires state authorization to provide distance education in states other than their own. Please follow the link below to see if Chatham is authorized to deliver instruction in your state. Also, this program may have a required practice experience component. Please check the information in the Practice Experience and Special requirements column to see if the state you plan on completing your practice experience hours is approved or has special restrictions.

State Authorization for Distance Education and Practical Experiences

The RN-BSN program emphasizes professionalism and leadership in an online learning environment that is conducive to students’ work and life obligations, advances students’ career possibilities, and enhances their ability to provide top-notch patient care.

—LORA WALTER, DNP, RN, Assistant Professor of Nursing, RN-BSN Program and Pathways to Nursing Coordinator

Our Faculty

If one word could best sum up Chatham's faculty, it would be engaged. Professors bring experiences to relate the course lessons to real-world situations.

Full Faculty
Photo of Diane Hunker
Program Director of Nursing, DNP Program Coordinator & Professor of Nursing
Photo of Julie Slade
Assistant Program Director/Associate Professor of Nursing
Photo of Lorri Birkholz
Assistant Professor of Nursing; Interim Director for Healthcare Informatics
Photo of Emily Hopkins
Associate Professor of Nursing, MSN Program Coordinator, IRB Chair
Photo of Lora Walter
Associate Professor of Nursing, RN-BSN Program and Pathways to Nursing (PTN) Coordinator
Chatham University student sits at Jeanie King Mellon Library, studying at a table while wearing headphones and working on her computer.

Competency-based Education

Chatham’s online RN-BSN program is based around competency-based educational practices and learning assessments, meaning students will be able to demonstrate what they can do as well as what they know.

Photo of a nurse in blue scrubs preparing to draw blood from a patient sitting in a chair.


The AfterCollege/AACN Scholarships support students who are seeking a baccalaureate, masters or doctoral degree in nursing. Eight $2,500 scholarships will be awarded throughout the year. The application deadlines are January 31, April 30, July 31, and October 31. A limited number of other nursing scholarships may be available. A FAFSA form must be completed and on file to be considered for the scholarship. To fill out the FAFSA, please visit their website and use school code: 003244.

Photo of a nursing instructor holding up a skull prop while pointing to it.

School of Health Sciences

The RN-BSN is a program within Chatham’s School of Health Sciences. The School of Health Sciences has developed a strong reputation for its sought-after healthcare professionals. From high first-time licensure rates to advanced clinical aptitude, our graduates enter their careers ready to meet the needs of patients and contribute to improving the quality of care their organizations deliver.

Explore the School of Health Sciences : Checkerboard 3 - School of Health Sciences
Photo of a nursing instructor holding up a skull prop while pointing to it.

RN-BSN for UPMC Nurses

Nurses employed by UPMC are able to enroll part-time in Chatham’s RN-BSN program at a price that is fully covered by UPMC’s tuition benefits, allowing them to improve patient outcomes and accelerate their careers at no cost to them.

Explore the Partnership : Checkerboard 4 - RN-BSN for UPMC Nurses
Photo of a building on Butler Community College's campus, at late dusk

Butler County Community College (BC3) & Chatham BSN Partnership

Students can save tens of thousands of dollars on a BSN from Chatham University with the BC3+CU program. For more information, please email Admissions.

Photo of a medical professional in a white coat looks into a child's ear in an exam room.

A Well-Rounded Degree

Explore areas related to women’s health, geriatric care, health policy and finance, as well as scholarship for evidence-based practice. In addition, you will be completing course-related activities to fulfill the practice experience requirements.