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What is a Registered Nurse (RN)?


Happy young female nurse holding file while consulting with doctor in clinic
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Question: What is a Registered Nurse (RN)?
What does it mean to be a "registered nurse" (RN) and how much money do registered nurses earn?
Answer: A registered nurse (RN) is one of many different types of nurses.

A Registered nurse is a nurse who has completed at least an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a bachelor of science degree in nursing (BSN), and has successfully passed the NCLEX-RN certification exam.

After becoming an RN, some go on to become an advanced practice RN (APRN) such as a CRNA, or other more highly specialized role.

RNs can work in a medical office or a hospital, in a variety of medical specialties and areas.

According to Payscale.com, the average starting pay for an RN is $21.83 per hour, which equates to an annual salary of about $42,000. For additional salary information for registered nurses, see the RN Salary Chart.

For more information on different types of nurses including registered nurses, see the nursing career profile.

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