RN to BSN in Illinois

According to a recent survey of working nurses in Illinois, one-third intend to retire in the next five years. According to the same survey, the younger nurses remaining in the workforce lack training in psychiatric, school, home health and community health nursing. In the short term, the state will experience an immediate labor shortage in these specialties. In the long term, it is estimated that 21,000 open nursing positions will remain unfilled by the year 2020.

These shortages represent enormous opportunity for nursing professionals in Illinois. RNs are particularly well positioned to take advantage of this employment demand by earning a BSN and capitalizing on the experience and education they already hold. Read on for a breakdown of each accredited RN-to-BSN program available in Illinois.

RN-to-BSN Programs in Illinois

Here we have compiled a comprehensive listing of Illinois’s RN to BSN programs. In the summaries below, you will find all the essential program information to help you quickly and easily narrow down your RN to BSN search.

Aurora University

$ 510 per hour on campus
$ 425 per hour online

Application Deadlines


  • Classes are held in 8-week modules year-round. The curriculum includes 38 semester hours, 30 hours of which are nursing core courses.
  • Students with a 2.5 GPA and a current Illinois or Wisconsin nursing license are invited to apply.
  • Clinical nursing experience must have occurred within the previous five years.
Campus and Online 347 S Gladstone Ave
Aurora, IL 60506-4892

Benedictine University

$ 305 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This program’s accelerated format allows working nurses to complete the 37-hour program in 12 to 16 months, though students may take up to 3 years.
  • Benedictine’s 3+1 program gives priority admission to students who have earned associate degrees from College of DuPage, Harper College, Moraine Valley Community College, Morton College or Triton College.
  • All nursing courses are web-enhanced and are offered during day and evening hours.
  • Though the school is a private Catholic university, its tuition rates are comparable to that of state schools.
Campus 5700 College Rd
Lisle, IL 60532-0900

Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing

$ 400 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This accelerated program delivers 31 credit hours in sequential 8-week courses over two years.
  • All students are given a laptop that they may keep after the program’s completion.
  • BRCN’s Simulation Center allows nursing students to experience patient interaction in a safe environment.
Online Broadway at 11th Street
Quincy, IL 62305-7005

Bradley University

$ 31,110 per semester

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • After prerequisites for a bachelor’s degree are met, professional nursing instruction is delivered in ten classes.
  • Clinical experiences at Bradley can be conducted in a student’s professional field of interest. These specialty areas include emergency, critical care, adult medical-surgical, skilled care, mental health, community health, perioperative, maternal-child and pediatric nursing.
  • Bradley’s nursing program boasts a 100% 6-month job placement rate among its graduates.
Campus and Hybrid 1501 W Bradley Ave
Peoria, IL 61625-0001

Chamberlain College of Nursing

$ 14,160 per semester

Application Deadlines

Contact for Information: 877-751-5783

  • Registered nurses can complete the BSN entirely online in as few as three semesters.
  • All classes are asynchronous and allow for maximum flexibility in scheduling.
  • Applicants residing in Puerto Rico or Washington are ineligible.
Online 1221 N Swift Rd
Addison, IL 60101

Eastern Illinois University

$ 283 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • EIU’s nursing department delivers 45 credit hours of upper-level professional nursing courses over four semesters.
  • All coursework is online and either asynchronous or synchronous depending on instructor preference.
  • Clinical experiences can be arranged at approved locations convenient to students’ homes.
Online 600 Lincoln Avenue
Charleston, IL 61920

Elmhurst College

$ 575 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: July 15
  • Spring: December 15
  • Summer: May 1
  • Elmhurst’s program is designed for working Chicago RNs to complete the BSN at their current place of employment. Partner organizations include Advocate Lutheran General, Advocate Christ, Advocate Good Samaritan, Advocate Illinois Masonic, Hinsdale Hospital, Gottleib Hospital and Elmhurst Hospital.
  • This accelerated program delivers eight upper-level professional nursing courses in addition to all other requirements for the BSN.
  • Applicants must demonstrate a minimum GPA of 2.75.
Campus and Hybrid 190 Prospect Ave
Elmhurst, IL 60126

Governors State University

$ 7,650 per semester

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: May 1
  • Spring: October 1
  • Summer: February 1
  • Full-time students who have completed all prerequisites can complete this program in three semesters.
  • Cohorts at GSU begin in the Fall and Spring semesters.
Online 1 University Pky
University Park, IL 60484

Illinois State University

$ 28,440 program total

Application Deadlines

March 15

  • ISU is ranked among U.S. News and World Report’s 100 Best Public Colleges.
  • Clinical experiences are conducted in the school’s state-of-the-art Nursing Simulation Laboratory, outfitted with high-fidelity patient simulators, a skills lab, patient rooms and a nurses' station.
  • ISU’s program is designed to be completed in two years of full-time study.
Online North and School Streets
Normal, IL 61790

Lakeview College of Nursing

$ 420 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: April 1
  • Spring: September 1
  • This 2-year program offers 39 hours of professional nursing coursework.
  • Clinical experiences are conducted at partner facilities within a 70-mile radius of the Charleston and Danville campuses.
  • Lakeview’s assessment program provides intensive preparation and practice geared toward graduates’ success on the NCLEX-RN exam.
Hybrid 903 N Logan Ave
Danville, IL 61832

Lewis University

$ 14,470 per semester

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: June 1
  • Spring: November 1
  • Over 12 cohorts in the Chicago area offer flexibility and convenience in attending classes.
  • The core nursing curriculum is composed of 26 hours of professional nursing instruction; in addition to prerequisites, this meets standard BSN requirements.
  • A lengthy list of partner organizations in the area allow for clinical experiences in a range of specialties.
Campus One University Parkway
Romeoville, IL 60446-2200

Loyola University of Chicago

$ 646 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This program is designed to be completed in three semesters, or one year.
  • 30 credit hours of upper-level nursing coursework are delivered in sequential sessions 6 to 8 weeks in length.
  • All classes are wholly online and asynchronous, allowing busy nurses to schedule study time when it is most convenient.
Online 1032 W. Sheridan Rd
Chicago, IL 60660

MacMurray College

$ 480 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This accelerated online program delivers ten 8-week upper-level nursing courses. Students who take two courses at a time can complete the program in 10 months.
  • All classes are asynchronous to allow for scheduling convenience.
Online 447 East College Ave
Jacksonville, IL 62650-2590

McKendree University

$ 340 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • The nursing core curriculum contains 31 hours of upper-division coursework, including a practicum.
  • Discounted tuition is available for students who earned an associate degree at a participating partner college in the area.
  • McKendree boasts a student-to-faculty ratio of 14 to 1.
  • Graduates of the school enjoy career success; 96% of undergraduates are gainfully employed within 6 months.
Campus 701 College Rd
Lebanon, IL 62254-1291

Methodist College

$ 623 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • All courses are online and asynchronous.
  • Clinical experiences can be conducted at approved locations convenient to students’ homes.
  • New cohorts begin in January and August of each year.
  • After prerequisites are met, this program can be completed in four semesters. Students are allowed up to five years to finish.
Online 415 St. Mark Court
Peoria, IL 61603

Millikin University

$ 432 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This accelerated program is delivered in sequential courses, totaling 39 credit hours over one year.
  • Classes meet once per week in the evenings from 6 to 10 p.m.
  • A small private school, Millikin offers an 11 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio. Of its 2014 graduates, 96% were employed or in graduate school within 6 months.
Campus 1184 W Main St
Decatur, IL 62522-2084

North Park University

$ 575 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • A total of 30 semester hours must be earned at North Park, 24 of which are upper-level nursing courses.
  • The accelerated RN to BSN program is designed to be completed in 18 months.
  • Classes are offered weeknights at this urban Christian school in Chicago.
  • Significant tuition discounts are granted to students who work at affiliated partner hospitals.
Campus 3225 W Foster Ave
Chicago, IL 60625-4895

Northern Illinois University

$ 4,733 per semester

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: August 1
  • Spring: December 1
  • Summer: May 15
  • Required nursing courses can be completed in three semesters, but there is no deadline.
  • Classes begin in fall, spring and summer each year.
  • NIU requires that 28 credit hours be earned at this institution; all others may be transferred.
  • Applicants must demonstrate clinical experience within five years prior to admission.
Hybrid 1425 W. Lincoln Hwy.
DeKalb, IL 60115

Olivet Nazarene University

$ 452 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This program delivers 30 credit hours of upper-division nursing coursework over a 21-month time span.
  • Clinical experiences totaling 22.5 practicum hours are required of each student.
  • Cohorts begin on one of seven start dates, either online or on campuses in Freeport, IL or Indianapolis, IN.
Hybrid and Online One University Avenue
Bourbonnais, IL 60914-2271

Resurrection University

$ 569 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: July 15
  • Spring: November 17
  • Summer: April 1
  • This accelerated program offers seven courses totaling 21 credit hours, delivered sequentially in 7-week sessions.
  • Classes are offered in the daytime for full-time and part-time students, and evening and weekend for part-time students.
  • ResU is geared toward adult students; its average pupil is 33.
Hybrid 1431 N. Claremont
Chicago, IL 60622

Saint Anthony College of Nursing

$ 500 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: February 15
  • Spring: September 15
  • The core nursing curriculum totals 28 credit hours, delivered in eight classes.
  • St. Anthony is a private Catholic school; applicants must submit an essay detailing their professional goals in a Christian context.
Campus 5658 E State St
Rockford, IL 61108-2468

Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing

$ 19,259 program total

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: February 15
  • Spring: September 15
  • The nursing core curriculum in this program consists of eight upper-division courses totaling 31 credit hours.
  • Full-time students can complete this program in four semesters, or two years.
  • St. Francis does not accept applicants from Iowa, Maryland, New Mexico, North Carolina, Louisiana, Massachusetts or New York.
Online 511 NE Greenleaf St
Peoria, IL 61603-3783

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

$ 255 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • This program offers six nursing courses delivered wholly online in 8-week sessions.
  • Full-time students can complete the BSN in three semesters, but full-time participation is not required.
  • Students gain clinical experience through SIU’s Simulated Learning Center, which consists of seven state-of-the-art computerized patient modules.
  • In addition to accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, SIU carries accreditation by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Education Programs.
Online Il State Rte 157
Edwardsville, IL 62026

St Johns College

$ 417 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • Students must take a minimum of 6 hours per semester, and must complete the program within 4 years.
  • Full-time students can expect to complete the program in two years.
  • The final 30 credit hours of the BSN degree program must be taken at St. John’s.
Online 729 E. Carpenter St
Springfield, IL 62702

Trinity College of Nursing & Health Sciences

$ 687 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Nov. 1

  • Full-time students can expect to complete the BSN at Trinity in two years.
  • The curriculum at this program contains upper-division nursing coursework totaling 51 hours over four semesters.
  • The college is affiliated with the Quad Cities’ Trinity Regional Health System, allowing its students access to top-tier medical facilities and comprehensive clinical experiences.
Campus 2122 - 25th Avenue
Rock Island, IL 61201-5317

University of Illinois at Chicago

$ 650 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • All courses are asynchronous and allow students to schedule study time when it is most convenient.
  • Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 2.75 for consideration. UIC does not accept applicants in Maryland.
  • This 30-credit hour program consists of eight upper-division nursing courses delivered in sequence.
  • Cohorts begin in January and August of each year.
  • Enrollees who take courses back-to-back can expect to complete this program in 16 months.
Online 601 S Morgan
Chicago, IL 60607

University of St. Francis

$ 620 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Rolling Admissions

  • USF is a Catholic institution and educates its graduates in Christ-centered nursing.
  • The program is competitive; applicants must have a 3.0 GPA.
  • After degree program prerequisites have been met, nurses in this program must complete courses in writing and theology at USF, as well as the 32-hour nursing core.
  • Registered nurses in Arizona, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, New Mexico, Wisconsin, Florida and Pennsylvania are invited to apply.
Online 500 N Wilcox St
Joliet, IL 60435-6188

Western Illinois University

$ 255 per credit hour

Application Deadlines

Fall: August 1
Spring: December 1

  • The BSN curriculum at WIU requires 65 credit hours of nursing courses, 36 of which are in the RN-BSN Completion Program.
  • This program is designed to be completed by working nurses in two years.
  • U.S. News & World Report ranks WIU 39th among Best Regional Universities in the Midwest, and Princeton Review has named it a Best Midwestern College, among numerous other accolades.
Campus and Online 1 University Circle
Macomb, IL 61455

Please contact the RN to BSN program in Illinois that you are interested in enrolling in to confirm details and to learn more. If you run an accredited RN to BSN program in Illinois that is not listed above; please reach out to us with program information and proof of accreditation. Thank you!

State Commitment to RN to BSN Education Paths

The Future of Nursing campaign is a nationwide effort to bring the country up to the standards of nursing as outlined in the 2010 Institute of Medicine Report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health. As a part of the effort, Illinois has formed a State Action Coalition with the singular objective of achieving the goals set forth by the campaign. Having at least 80% of the nursing workforce hold a BSN degree is an integral part of this initiative and we have outlined below the ways in which Illinois is actively progressing on this front.

  • Education
  • Leadership
  • Practice & Care
  • Interprofessional Care
  • Diversity
  • Data

What is being done to increase the number of Illinois RN’s with a BSN?

The AC promotes best practices for seamless transition to BSN programs during annual Education Advancement Summits.

Are students enrolled via identified promising models of education progression?

Yes. RN to MSN Programs; and State or Regional Shared Curriculum.


What programs are being implemented to prepare nurses to lead change to advance health?

The AC has assembled several projects and a fellowship to promote higher education and career advancement for state nurses.

Practice & Care

Is the Coalition working to remove barriers to RN level of care?

Yes. The state governor initiated a taskforce to review scope of practice issues for RNs. Work is also underway in the legislature to promote the role of nurses.

Are they advancing state policy to remove barriers to care provided by APRNs?

Yes. The state governor initiated a taskforce to review scope of practice issues for APRNS. Work is also underway in the legislature to promote the role of nurses.

Interprofessional Care

Is the state working to improve communication, transparency, and cooperation between healthcare providers?

No specific plans announced.


How are they improving diversity of the nursing workforce and care provided?

No specific plans announced.


What steps are being taken to remove gaps in workforce and health care data?

A data workgroup plans to review and apply labor market data to steer and support strategic sector initiatives.

Contact Info

Susan Y. Swart

Executive Director
ANA Illinois

Linda B. Roberts

Illinois Center for Nursing

Sharon Canariato

Executive Director
Illinois Organization of Nurse Leaders

Source: Campaign for Action

For a detailed progress report and additional workgroup contact information, please see the Illinois Action Coalition page.

Illinois Licensing

Illinois is not part of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). An Illinois nursing license is only valid within Illinois. For licensing information, visit the Illinois Department of Health and Human Services.

licensure map

Nursing Employment Outlook

Nursing Supply and Demand Projections

Source: "The Future of the Nursing Workforce," US HRSA, accessed June 2015.

What Nurses Make on Average in Major Cities

Source: BLS OES, May 2013. Accessed May 2014. Some data not provided.

Additional Information

Other State RNtoBSN Information