The Evolution of an Online RN to BSN Nursing Program: Successful and Unsuccessful Program Revisions based on Multiple Stakeholders Evaluations

G. Birkholz, G. Shuster, and L. Petri (USA)


Online Degree Program, Evaluation, Best Practices


A five year old fully web-based nursing program for associate degree nurses completing a baccalaureate degree (RN to BSN) at the University of New Mexico College of Nursing was evaluated by student, faculty and library/technical stakeholders (N=230) using quantitative and qualitative methods. The findings suggest that students and faculty have similar views regarding technical and faculty expertise, anytime-anywhere web convenience, and the usefulness of research and written assignments. Stakeholders, however, had differing viewpoints regarding the time burden, usefulness of web discussions, building a learning community and the clarity of communications and faculty organization. Based on the evaluation results successful curricular changes were made in the standardization of Web course homepages and their content as well as program curricular content. Intervening variables of the nursing shortage and a major college undergraduate curricular change focused the college on meeting the nursing shortage by focusing on graduating new nurses rather than improving the skills and education of current RNs. This change has adversely impacted the Web delivery issues and the RN to BSN population.

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