Nurse Practitioner Bridge Programs: Where Will You Go for Your Accelerated Degree?

Prospective nurse practitioners are rightly fascinated by the 'bridge' or accelerated nurse practitioner programs offered by many schools.  These programs present an excellent opportunity for students seeking a career change.  Accelerated nurse practitioner programs offer students the opportunity to attend a two to three year program through which they obtain both an RN and MSN degree.  Which schools offer accelerated nurse practitioner degrees?  How long do these programs take?  Most importantly, how much do they cost?

Check out this list of nurse practitioner schools offering bridge programs; nurse practitioner programs for students without a nursing degree.  Through these programs you can become a nurse practitioner without a health care background or nursing experience in just 2 to 4 years.


As a product of a nurse practitioner bridge program myself, I can speak to the benefit of these programs.  Although I did not major in nursing or hold an RN degree, I was able to complete my nurse practitioner program in just two years.  I believe these programs are an excellent opportunity for non-nurses aspiring to enter the nurse practitioner profession.



Hi there,

Just wanted to let you know that the Seattle University program is four years for non-RNs to become a DNP.

Thanks for the helpful info on all the other programs!

Frances Arnold

Sorry, Kacey - I don't know of any of these programs in Florida. 

Erin Tolbert

Do you know of any programs in Florida? I am a speech pathologist with BA and MA looking for career change options. Non-nursing to nurse practitioner bridge programs in Florida.

Kacey Garcia Poulin

Hi Tatiana, 

The list in the blog post above shows the programs we are aware of that allow students with a non-nursing undergraduate degree to get an MSN. 

Erin Tolbert

I was just wondering if you have a list of schools where you can apply to get an MSN with a non-nursing undergraduate degree. Currently I'm only seeing schools where you can apply to be a Nurse Practitioner. Thanks for the help!


Sorry, Bev. I do not. You might try getting your RN degree then attending an RN-MSN program? This will still be an accelerated path compared to the BSN-MSN route. 

Erin Tolbert

Do you know of any new exxacelerated programs in Michigan to become a NP, with a Bachelors in Physiology?


Hi Robin, 

This is the most up to date list of direct entry NP programs we have on hand. 

As far as length of program, it depends on each individual school. There are a few direct entry programs that are only 2 years in length. Attending one of these options would be faster than getting an accelerated BSN followed by an MSN. Going the direct entry route also means you only need to apply to a program once, rather than separately for your BSN and MSN degrees. 

As far as the BSN to MSN path, there are few disadvantages to this route. With a BSN, you will be able to work during your MSN program. This path is also typically less expensive than a direct entry MSN program. The only disadvantage is that it tends to take a bit longer and isn't as streamlined as a direct entry program.

Hope this helps!

Erin Tolbert


Do you know where I could obtain an updated list (or maybe a chart/spreadsheet) of direct entry MSN programs and info? I think I want to do FNP.

And/or an updated list/chart/spreadsheet of accelerated BSN programs? It looks like it would be quicker to do an accelerated BSN and then get a masters from there...atleast from what I have seen thus far. Are there any disadvantages to doing it this way?

Any help is greatly appreciated. I am willing to move wherever and trying to research schools individually is super time consuming.

Thank you in advance for any insight that you can provide!


Hi Victoria, 

I believe Columbia University is starting a direct entry nurse practitioner program in summer 2016. 

Erin Tolbert