CRNA professionals are essential in the world of healthcare. Whether it is a routine procedure or a life-threatening situation that necessitates surgery, a CRNA has the knowledge and expertise to help patients through those situations. And in this article, we will be discussing 10 of the best CRNA online courses and the best nurse anesthetist online programs with certificates. CRNA is an abbreviation for Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, and they are primarily responsible for the administration of anesthesia. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary is $157,000, with $242,000 being the highest. The projected job growth rate through 2024 is 31%.
As a CRNA, you would have the opportunity to work in a variety of hospital units, as well as for a physician, dentist, or a variety of other specialists. Because of cost and availability issues, many organizations have begun to hire CRNAs in place of anesthesiologists. Because a CRNA school is a graduate-level degree that requires coursework as well as clinical experience, it necessitates a great deal of determination and drive. The payoff, on the other hand, is knowing that you were a part of making people’s lives healthier and happier, and in many cases, saving lives. CRNAs are among the most highly regarded nursing professionals.
If you want to start your journey into CRNA school, this list should give you some insight into some of the best degree programs in that field that can be completed online. Many of these degrees will have on-campus components, but all of the programs listed in this article are designed for those who are already working as nurses and are presented in a way that takes into account how busy your life is. We’ve written about CRNA degrees at various levels on this list to appeal to those of you at various stages of your education.
Top Best CRNA Online Courses
We graded every school in the United States that offers top accredited CRNA programs and the best CRNA online courses. Each school was given a score out of a possible maximum of 200 points. To be considered for this article, schools must be currently and fully accredited, as well as not be for-profit institutions. The following formulas were used to generate the scores:
- Freshman Retention Rate of 50% and;
- A graduation rate of 50%
These two rates are used in our methodology because they have historically been strong indicators of student satisfaction and educational quality when combined. When possible, school websites were used to collect those statistics and the information presented about each institution. If we couldn’t find the information we needed on the schools’ websites, we turned to U.S. News & World Report and the National Center for Education Statistics databases. After compiling the data, the total score for each school was determined by adding the rates.
The entire list was then ranked based on that score, and this article presents the top thirty highest-scoring schools. If two schools received the same score, we used their names in alphabetical order as our designated tie-breaker. It should be noted that no school on this list received preferential treatment for any reason. Anyone who follows the methodology exactly as described will get the same results. However, due to insufficient data, there may be a small number of schools that would have ranked higher in this article if the data had been available. This article did not include any for-profit schools.
10 Best CRNA Online Courses
1. Central Connecticut State University
This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021. Central Connecticut State University is a public research university in New Britain, Connecticut. It is commonly abbreviated as Central or CCSU. It was founded in 1849, making it Connecticut’s oldest publicly funded university. It is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges’ Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, and it has two programmatic accreditations in nursing and music. The university, which is made up of four different schools, has over 10,000 students.
The four schools are the Ammon College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, the School of Business, the School of Education and Professional Studies, and the School of Engineering, Science, and Technology. Only 10% of CCSU’s student body is enrolled in distance-based courses, with the majority of those students studying at the graduate level. In May of 2017, the Doctor of Nursing Practice program was implemented and accredited for the first time by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs.
It is a hybrid program designed for CRNAs who are already working, so the on-campus requirements are minimal. Students pursuing advanced specializations are only required to visit campus two or three times per year. This program is only available to all entry-level students on a full-time basis and will take three years to complete over five semesters. There are accelerated options available, but students are strongly encouraged to stick to the predetermined course schedule so that they can focus on each course and perform their best.
On-campus meetings are typically scheduled in August, January, and May, and students will have access to the schedule well in advance to ensure their availability. This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs.
2. University of Arizona
This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021. The University of Arizona is a public research university located in Tucson, Arizona. It was the first university established in Arizona territory, having been chartered in 1885. It is a member of the Association of American Universities and a Higher Learning Commission accredited institution. Degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels are available from 19 different schools and colleges. The university is commonly abbreviated as UA or Arizona. One of the many notable alumni is Joan Ganz Cooney, the creator of Sesame Street.
Other notables include Gary Shandling, Kate Walsh, Olympic athletes, Nobel laureates, and others. Noam Chomsky is a laureate professor of linguistics as of 2017, and Arizona has over 50 faculty members who are members of exclusive academies. The film Revenge of the Nerds was filmed on its campus, which is an interesting fact. The University of Arizona’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program is one of the most adaptable on this list. It is entirely online and provides students with a variety of concentrations, including, of course, the Nurse Anesthetist track. A practice-focused doctoral program prepares students to become CRNAs. It is a full-time program that will last three years.
The majority of the coursework is available online, but there will be some in-person requirements throughout your three years in the program. Students are admitted to the program in June, at the start of the Summer semester. Nursing students can also apply for special scholarships from the College of Nursing. If you live in the western United States, you can also apply for the Western Regional Graduate Program, which will charge you in-state rates even if you do not live in Arizona. This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs.
3. Florida International University
This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs. Florida International University is a public research university located in University Park, Florida, in the Greater Miami area. It was founded in 1965 and is one of the 12 members of the State University System of Florida. The proposal for a public university in South Florida was first made in 1943, and in 1964, a bill was introduced once more to begin the development of a university in Miami. It became law in 1965, paving the way for the establishment of Florida International University. FIU serves 55,003 students and is frequently abbreviated as FIU.
It is one of the state’s primary graduate research universities, with approximately 10,000 students currently enrolled in graduate programs. FIU, on the other hand, offers degrees from the associates level on up. FIU offers 191 programs of study spread across 23 constituent colleges and schools. The CRNA program that is ranked here is housed at Florida International University’s Nicole Wertheim College of Nursing & Health Sciences. It is offered as a clinical specialty track in addition to their current Doctor of Nursing Practice program.
The program is a continuous nine-semester program that is only available on a full-time basis. Only those with a master’s degree or certificate in their chosen Advanced Practice Nursing specialty role are eligible for the degree. It is entirely online, but it does include a practicum and a dissertation. According to FIU, the program is cost-effective and suitable for working professionals.
FIU is fully accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and its nursing programs are individually accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia. This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021.
4. East Carolina University
This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021. East Carolina University is a public research university with a sea-grant mission based in Greenville, North Carolina. Except for the Field Station for Coastal Studies in New Holland, North Carolina, and an international campus in Certaldo Alto, Italy, it has six different locations, the majority of which are spread out across the Greenville area. Eastern Carolina University, or ECU as it is colloquially known, was founded in 1907. It began as a regular school known as East Carolina Teachers Training School.
In the 60 years that it took ECU to be officially granted university status in 1967 when it took on its current name, it underwent many name changes. It is made up of nine schools and colleges, and its 28,962 students have access to just under 200-degree programs. The Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accredits ECU. Six nursing programs have programmatic accreditation, and the school as a whole has 16 special endorsements from field-relevant organizations.
Students at ECU can pursue a Master of Science in Nursing with a concentration in Nurse Anesthesia, as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice. Every year, fewer than ten students are admitted to the DNP program! The teaching staff at the College of Nursing is experienced and dedicated, and regardless of the degree you are pursuing, you will have the opportunity to take specially tailored courses that will prepare you for a career as a CRNA.
To enroll in the CRNA degree programs at ECU, you must be a licensed registered nurse in the state of North Carolina. This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs.
5. University of Detroit Mercy
This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021. The University of Detroit Mercy, also known simply as Detroit Mercy, is a private research university located in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit Mercy has three campuses in the Detroit metropolitan area. It is Roman Catholic in nature and is sponsored by both the Society of Jesus and the Religious Sisters of Mercy. It was founded in 1877 by the Society of Jesus and is the state’s second-largest Roman Catholic university. This is one of the smaller schools on this list, with only 4,875 students.
Through its seven colleges and schools, Detroit Mercy offers over 100-degree programs to its students, all of which are universally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. These are the Schools of Architecture, Business Administration, Dentistry, Engineering and Science, Health Professions & McAuley School of Nursing, Law, and Liberal Arts & Education. U.S. News & World Report ranked the university’s nurse anesthesia degree program #10 out of over 100 comparable programs in 2016. The rigorous instruction and incredible faculty have contributed significantly to the program’s national reputation.
Authors and national conference speakers are among the instructors in the courses involved. Because the program is offered in a hybrid format, some on-campus coursework is required. Graduates of the program pass the national board exam on the first try at a rate of 91%, which is slightly higher than the national average. It also has a perfect 100% employment rate. Every fall semester, students are admitted following an application and interview process. This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs.
6. Union University
This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs. Union University, located in Jackson, Tennessee, is a private Christian liberal arts university. In addition, there are campuses in Germantown and Hendersonville. The university was founded in 1823 as a merger of West Tennessee College, Union University of Murfreesboro, Southwestern Baptist University, and Martin’s Hall-Moody Junior College. The school, also known as Union, has 3,466 students. It is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission.
Union University offers degrees at the associates, bachelor, masters, doctoral, and certificate levels in 125 different programs of study, including Church Music, Drawing, Computer Information Systems, Nursing, Education, and more. U.S. News & World Report ranked Union 14th among regional universities in the South in 2016. It was named a top-tier university for the 19th time in a row in 2016. The Doctor of Nursing Practice in Nurse Anesthesia is available through Union’s School of Nursing in either a full-time or part-time curriculum model, depending on your needs.
Students are only admitted to this CRNA program once a year in the fall, and they complete their coursework in a cohort model. Technological Transformations of Healthcare, Faith and Science, Epidemiology, and other topics will be covered by students on this degree track. The program consists of 38 curriculum hours and 660 clinical hours, and it is designed to be completed in three years over five semesters, including a capstone project. This is a post-program, master’s so applicants must have a master’s degree in their chosen advanced practice nursing specialization. This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021.
7. University of Tennessee, Knoxville
This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs. The University of Tennessee, Knoxville is a public research university in Knoxville, Tennessee. It is the flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System, founded in 1794, and was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges in 2000. Surprisingly, the university was established before Tennessee became a state. It is known by several different names, including UT Knoxville or simply UTK.
Blount College was established as an all-male institution in the beginning. It is now a coeducational university with a student body of over 28,000 students. Among the enrolled students are students from all 50 states and nearly 100 different countries. The College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the College of Architecture and Design, the Haslam College of Business, the College of Communication and Information, the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences, the Tickle College of Engineering, the College of Social Work, the College of Law, the College of Nursing, and the College of Veterinary Medicine are all part of UTK.
UTK also offers an online Master of Science in Nursing with a concentration in the Nurse Anesthesia program. The program accepts students in January of each year and is one of only a few on this list that will accept those of you with a BSN. All applicants, however, must have at least one year of current, full-time critical care nursing experience; additionally, you must obtain your CCRN before beginning coursework. The program is completed in slightly less than three years. The courses are in-depth and aim to prepare students for all aspects of work as a CRNA, and the faculty is enthusiastic about this goal.
CRNAs serve as both program directors and the education coordinator! This nationally ranked university and its incredible faculty will lay a solid foundation for your career. This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021.
8. The University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021. The University of Cincinnati is a public research university in Cincinnati, Ohio, with a space-grant mission. It is the state’s second-largest by enrollment (44,338 students) and one of the top 50 largest in the country. It is frequently abbreviated as UC. It has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 1913; the university was founded in 1819. At UC, there are over 350 programs of study available at all academic levels. With 66 doctoral programs, the university has a large selection. It is divided into 14 colleges and schools, ten of which are ranked among the top 100 in the nation.
44 of its programs have also been ranked among the top 100 in the country, with the Nurse Anesthesia program ranking 22nd. While the University of California was ranked 198th overall in 2017, U.S. News & World Report named it one of the 23 “Up and Coming Schools.” The Doctor of Nursing Anesthesia Practice program was established in 1945, making it the fourth of its kind. Three of the graduate’s programs went on to become presidents of the Association of Nurse Anesthetists, and many other alumni hold highly regarded positions and accolades. It begins in the spring and lasts nine semesters. It is a 107-credit program with many courses available entirely online.
The program is designed to be delivered in a hybrid format, so there will be some on-campus requirements. In the third year, this online CRNA degree program culminates in a capstone project. The University of Cincinnati College of Nursing has been ranked in the top 10 in seven different categories by a variety of large and small publications, and it has been ranked in the top 50 a total of 15 times, with seven of those being for online programs. U.S. News & World Report ranked them 22nd among the Best Graduate Schools for Nurse Anesthesia in their publication. This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs.
9. University of Alabama
This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs. The University of Alabama, located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, is a sea-grant and space-grant public research university. This flagship campus of the University of Alabama System was established in 1820, making it the state’s oldest public university. It is also the largest in terms of enrollment, with nearly 40,000 students. It is primarily residential, but 32% of the student body is enrolled in at least some distance courses; 26% of graduate students alone take their courses entirely online.
The university, also known as Alabama or UAB, offers over 100 different programs of study and confers degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, and certificate levels. It is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and it has nine additional programmatic accreditations from organizations such as the American Psychological Association and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. UAB’s CRNA program is the Post-BSN to DNP Pathway for Nurse Anesthesia, which is a unique specialty track that does not require applicants to already have an MSN degree.
UAB also has a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing program. The Ph.D. program in the state of Alabama’s only one of its kind. The coursework for this online CRNA track is entirely online, but there are a few on-campus intensives that you must attend as a student. Because of a waiver signed and implemented by the university, all distance-learning students pay in-state tuition rates for their online courses. Both the exam pass rate and the three-month employment rate in this program are an impressive 100%. This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021.
10. University of Iowa
This is one of the best CRNA online courses and among the best nurse anesthetist online programs. The University of Iowa is a public research university located in Iowa City, Iowa. It was founded in 1847, just two months after Iowa joined the Union. It has over 30,000 students and offers bachelor’s degrees and higher. The university is commonly abbreviated as UI or simply Iowa. The University of Iowa is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, and it also has 27 programmatic accreditations from 14 different accrediting bodies.
UI has always been at the forefront of promoting student diversity; it was the first public university to be coeducational, the first to have a person of color on a varsity sports team, the first to confer a law degree on a woman, and the first to recognize an LGBTQ+ student organization. Today, UI is made up of 11 different schools and colleges that offer over 5,000 courses. In 2017, UI was named one of the Top 100 National Universities by U.S. News & World Report. It was also ranked #33 among public universities, and 16 of the available graduate programs were ranked among the top 25 in the country.
The Anesthesia Nursing Program is a DNP program (Doctor of Nursing Practice). It admits BAN and BSN holders who are Registered Nurses, which is unusual and a fantastic opportunity for students. Graduates will be awarded a DNP degree and will be eligible to take the NBCRNA National Certification Exam. The Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs recently mandated that all APN programs for CRNAs be taught at the doctorate level, and the University of Iowa was one of the first to receive Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education approval for its DNP program.
This meticulously prepared CRNA program consists of three years of full-time study and requires you to practice in a variety of different medical settings so that you are fully equipped regardless of your professional goals. This program is delivered in a hybrid format, and you must complete a dissertation in your final year. This is one of the top accredited CRNA programs and among the new CRNA programs 2021.
If you’re looking for a job that combines compassion and independence, becoming a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA) could be a good option. Before surgery, these nurses administer anesthesia to patients. CRNAs, as advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), must have a strong educational background to provide the level of care that their patients require. We hope this article walks you through online CRNA programs and help you decide if this is the right path for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Still not sure if a career as a CRNA is right for you? Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about CRNA programs and career opportunities.
How Much Do CRNAs Get Paid?
The salary potential of a CRNA is determined by their credentials, experience, and employer. Nurse anesthetists, practitioners, and midwives earn a median annual salary of $117,670, according to BLS data. According to the BLS, employment for these professionals will increase by 45% between 2020 and 2030. This forecast represents roughly five times the average projected growth rate for all occupations. Nurse anesthetists earn a median annual salary of $183,580. The median annual salary for nurse practitioners and midwives is $111,680 and $111,130, respectively. Hospitals and outpatient care centers, according to BLS data, pay higher wages than health practitioner offices.
How Do Online Programs For Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) Work?
The curriculum of the top accredited CRNA programs is the same as that of an on-campus program, but it is completed entirely online.
In An Online CRNA Program, How Is Course Content Delivered?
An online program may include asynchronous (recorded/non-live), synchronous (live), and on-campus immersion. To complete your field experience requirements, you will still need to visit a clinical site in person. Check the website of your desired program for information on the delivery format.
Should I Pursue A CRNA Program Online?
Only you can determine whether or not undertaking one of the new CRNA programs 2021 is right for you. Consider that an online program may provide you with more scheduling flexibility and may be less expensive than an on-campus program. If you want to work as a CRNA because you love helping people, an online program can help you get there.
Will An Online CRNA Program Assist Me In Obtaining Employment?
Employers understand the importance of a high-quality degree. In general, accredited programs are designed to meet the requirements of most employers and ensure that you are adequately prepared to work in the field. As long as your online program is among the top accredited CRNA programs, it will carry the same weight as a degree earned on campus.
What Is The Distinction Between A CRNA With An Msn And A Dnp?
An MSN can assist you in becoming an APRN. A DNP can help you advance your career by allowing you to take on administrative or public policy roles. Once you have your MSN, you can always enroll in a DNP program to advance to higher-paying positions.
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