As national initiatives continue to push for a nursing workforce comprised mostly of BSN-educated RNs, nurses in Illinois are discovering an added benefit for attaining baccalaureate degrees: they lead to higher salaries. Right now, the Illinois Healthcare Action Coalition reports that roughly 41% of nurses in the state hold an ADN, while 39% hold a BSN degree.
The goal to develop a better-educated nursing community in Illinois does not just concern new nurses entering the field. More than ever, ADN and lesser-educated licensed nurses are being encouraged to return to school to complete RN to BSN bridge programs. In fact, government entities like the Illinois Department of Public Health are even helping nursing earn their BSNs by offering scholarship programs.
The Illinois Center for Nursing currently lists thirty RN-BSN programs along with a few dozen other post-licensure programs offered throughout the state. As more nursing students look to BSN programs, organizations like the Illinois Action Coalition are seeking ways to support easier access to more affordable programs.
According to the American Association of Colleges of Nurses, there were 11,951 students enrolled in BSN programs across Illinois in 2013. That same year, state colleges and universities graduated 5,532 students from baccalaureate and graduate-level nursing programs.
BSN Nurses Earn Higher Pay Than ADN Nurses in Illinois
BSN degree programs provide students with much more extensive clinical training and educational instruction than associate-level programs. As such, employers place greater value on BSN nurses and therefore compensate them with higher salaries.
BSN v. ADN Annual Salaries
Full-time nurses in Illinois are typically awarded annual salaries. The Illinois Department of Employment Security reports that RN-ADN nurses earn an average annual salary of $53,205 while RN-BSN nurses earn a much higher average annual salary of $78,222.
BSN v. ADN Monthly Wages
The Illinois Department of Employment Security reports that RN-ADN nurses earn an average monthly salary of $4,433 while RN-BSN nurse make an average monthly salary closer to $6,518.
BSN v. ADN Hourly Wages
Part-time nurses in Illinois are often awarded hourly wages. The Illinois Department of Employment Security reports that RN-ADN nurses earn an average hourly wage of $25.58 while RN-BSN nurses earn a more lucrative average hourly wage of $37.61.
Regional Pay Averages for RN-BSNs in Illinois
Registered nurses with BSN degrees consistently earn within the 75th and 90th salary percentile groups in their occupation. In 2013, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics released the following data to outline the regional pay averages for RN-BSNs employed in several metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas of Illinois: