Many nurses are well aware of the necessity to take continuing education courses. Not only do employers love to see a continuously updated education, but the vast majority, if not all, states mandate that nurses take continuing education courses to be eligible for re-licensing. Put another way, without taking a certain number of continuing education units (or CEUs for short), a nurse cannot renew their license to practice in the state. So, clearly, taking courses is of absolute necessity to all nurses. However, the big question that most people have is how much does a nursing continuing education course cost? Unfortunately, there’s no simple answer to this question as the prices vary greatly between institutions. With that said, it is often possible to break down the prices into a couple of major categories: those taken at professional nursing associations and those taken from extraneous online places.
A professional nursing continuing education course offered by a respected association such as the American Nursing Credentialing Center will likely run you in the $100s, if not more. Online PowerPoint courses are typically the cheapest with the rates starting from a hundred or two and working up from there. Conferences are easily the most expensive as they encompass an entry fee plus plane fare if the conference isn’t being hosted in your home city. Of course, the cash isn’t necessarily wasted. Conferences are often one of the best continuing education opportunities that are available as they are usually filled with speakers who are experts in their respective field.
Online courses taken from “random” web sites are often significantly cheaper. Many sites that are credentialed by a major association offer subscription services. This means that you can take as many CEUs in a year as you’d like for a dirt cheap price of probably under $100 per year. Naturally, in terms of the education, you get what you pay for. They certainly won’t have the same informative level as you’d expect from a leader in the field giving a seminar on his/her area of expertise. However, if its the credit hours you’re after, these sites will offer a nursing continuing education course at extremely low prices. Just make sure that you verify that the site is credentialed by an association that your state accepts. If you don’t check this out, you may find that you end up wasting a lot of time and effort without much return.
So, the answer to the question “how much does a nursing continuing education course cost?” is very difficult to answer as it highly depends on what you’re looking for. On the one hand, you can get dirt cheap credit hours that may not be particularly informative or substantial. On the other hand, if you’re looking for highly engaging events, you might be better served by looking at your association for conferences and other meetings that are happening in your area. These will usually provide better information than online sites.