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ABSTRACT: In this descriptive study, graduates of a traditional baccalaureate nursing program were compared with graduates of an accelerated baccalaureate program at the same university between 1991 and 2006. A survey was sent to a random sample of two groups: traditional baccalaureate graduates and graduates of the accelerated program who had previous degrees in another major and completed the nursing curriculum in a shorter time frame than the traditional students, resulting in a total sample of 73 graduates. Outcome variables included demographics, NCLEX passing rates, transitioning to the professional role, employment, professional development, certifications and self-reported reasons the respondents entered the nursing profession and why they remained. There were no statistically significant differences between the two groups on these variables. Results of a t-test revealed that the GPA of the accelerated group was significantly higher than the traditional group. Future considerations include the impact that accelerated program development may have on both the current and projected nursing shortage.
International Journal of Nursing Education Scholarship 02/2009; 6:Article13. DOI:10.2202/1548-923X.1639