To become an RN, you must first earn a nursing diploma or degree.
Then you need to pass a national licensing examination, the NCLEX-RN. Once you pass this exam, you will have earned a registered nursing (RN) license.
The RN designation refers to a professional license rather than graduation from a specific degree program.
What Is a Registered Nurse?
A registered nurse is a healthcare professional who has graduated from a nursing program, possibly online, and passed the the national licensing exam.
A registered nurse, often referred to as an RN, treats patients and helps educate the public about health. They are front-line providers who give emotional support to patients and their families. RNs also monitor patients’ medical symptoms, perform diagnostic tests and help with patient follow-up and rehabilitation.