How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 15 months

Many careers in the world are thriving and growing every single day. Some jobs have been in the world since the beginning of the day. Without some jobs and fields, the world will certainly cease to exist and one of them is medicine. The field of medicine has employed many people like doctors and nurses. Though doctors and nurses work together, the educational qualifications required to become a nurse are completely different than that of the doctor.

Not only the qualification, but the timing to complete the course is also different. The field of nursing is growing every day, and unlike old times, nurses need to qualify very professionally to get the jobs. There are hundreds of nursing schools all across the world and there are people who want to become nurses every day instead of doctors and physicians. Based on the coursework and degree, the time taken to complete nursing can vary.

According to sources, it takes about 2 to 5 years to become a nurse.

How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse


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How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse?

DegreeTime of coursework
Associate degree2 to 3 years
Bachelor’s degree3 to 4 years
Master’s degree2 to 5 years

There are many steps in becoming a nurse. First, one must find a good nursing school to start their education. After that, they must obtain a license, that will make them credible to practice nursing. Then, the nurses can obtain employment and choose a specialty. Just like doctors, nurses can also choose a specialty, and they can also pursue additional training to make themselves better in their job, and progress more in their careers too.

Formal education is very important in nursing, just like for any other job. To become a registered nurse, RN, one must have at least an associate degree to practice nursing, and yet, to become a practicing nurse (PN), the nurses don’t need a degree. To become a registered nurse, there are two educational requirements, a AND ( Associate Degree in Nursing) and a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing).

An associate degree in nursing takes about three to four years to finish. The training can be completed in a community college or a nursing school and after that, the degree can be completed after completing all the requirements successfully. After completing the degree, the person must take NCLEX-RN, which is the national wide exam for nurses in the US and no one can practice nursing without passing this test.

Why Does It Take That Long To Become A Nurse?

Different subjects are offered to the nurses to choose from during their degree. A Bachelor’s degree in nursing can take about four years to complete and depending on where one completes their education, they are sometimes trained to specialize in certain health problems and certain areas of medicine. After graduating from the program, the nurses will have many chances to advance into higher positions in their careers.

An Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing can be obtained more sooner if one already has a degree in any non-nursing subject that is related to nursing, and this course can take about a year or two to complete.

It takes lesser time to become a Practical Nurse (PN) than to become an RN. It takes about 15 months to become a PN. In the program to become a practical nurse, they will teach the nurses to provide the patients routine care, help them maintain the medication of the patients and they are also taught to collect data from the patients and also the doctors.


The main difference between the programs of RN and PN is the time taken to complete and the topics learned during the course. One can always learn more skills in BSN due to the long duration of the course, but if one wants to start practicing sooner, they can start being a nurse with just an associate degree. A PN program will help the nurses get equipped with all the skills they require to become practicing nurses.

The specializations can vary and based on the program type, the duration to complete the course can also be different. A diploma in nursing takes about 16 months to 2 years, an associate degree can take about 20 months to 2 years, and a bachelor’s degree can last for 3 to 4 years.



Last Updated : 23 February, 2024

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21 thoughts on “How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse (And Why)?”

    1. Absolutely, the investment in nursing education is an investment in the well-being of countless individuals.

  1. The timeline to become a nurse is reflective of the depth and breadth of knowledge required in the field.

    1. Certainly, it’s no easy feat to become a nurse, and the curriculum reflects the significance of their role.

  2. It’s clear that becoming a nurse is no small undertaking. The process of training and education is significant.

  3. The demand for nurses is only going to rise, and as a result, the field will only continue to grow in importance.

    1. Absolutely! It takes a lot of work to become a nurse, but it is a rewarding career path for so many people.

  4. Factors like the duration and specialization options demonstrate the rich involvement a career in nursing offers.

    1. Avatar of Chapman Kimberly
      Chapman Kimberly

      Absolutely, and it’s heartening to see individuals take on this vital and multifaceted profession.

    1. Indeed, it’s a multifaceted field, providing different educational opportunities for different individuals.

    1. Exactly, the level of expertise needed to be a nurse is substantial, and those who choose this path deserve high regard.

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