College Catalog

Nursing (BSN)

(Effective Fall 2010)

This unique completion major is specifically designed for the registered nurse who wishes to earn a degree on a full- or part-time basis. The baccalaureate curriculum builds on the knowledge and skills possessed by RNs who have graduated from diploma- and associate-degree nursing programs. The standard curriculum plan, directly applicable to Penn College associate-degree nursing graduates, is designed to be completed in four semesters, thus a two-plus-two (exclusive of pre-year) designation. Other curriculum plan options are available, depending on the number of transfer credits accorded for previous college work.

The bachelor-degree major prepares licensed registered nurses to contribute to the quality provision of nursing care in a rapidly changing health care environment. This major enables nurses to build upon their knowledge base and assume positions with increased responsibility in a variety of health care settings, from promoting health and facilitating adaptation to increasingly complex health care problems/needs. The curriculum offers a required core of nursing and general education courses with elective course options based on student educational and career goals.

Career Opportunities

The BSN can lead to advanced clinical and administrative positions in the traditional field of nursing, but also offers opportunities which include, but are not limited to, home health nursing, public health nursing, nursing education, the armed services, and health care case management.

Special Admissions Requirements

Current valid RN license in any state with eligibility for licensure in Pennsylvania. Graduate of an NLNAC-accredited program within the last 10 years and meeting one of the three following criteria: graduate of an NLNAC-accredited program within the last three years; practiced a minimum of 1,000 hours in nursing in the last three years; or, successfully completed a State Board of Nursing-approved refresher course within the last three years. Other applicants will be reviewed on an individual basis. Junior-level status may be achieved by meeting the College's requirements of completing a minimum of 60 college credits. In addition, a 2.0 GPA in nursing is required. Taking upper-level NUR courses requires acceptance into the BSN major or permission of the Director of Nursing. For more details, see the RN to BSN admission information. Registered nurses who are not enrolled in the BSN major may be permitted to take selected NUR electives with permission of the Director.

Remediation Strategies

All transfer students entering the BSN completion major without prior college-level English and mathematical classes will be tested for deficiencies, and will be required to remediate the deficiencies prior to acceptance. Any reading deficiency also must be remediated prior to acceptance.

Transfer Procedures

All students entering the BSN major will be treated as transfer students, including students who graduated from Penn College's associate-degree Nursing major. All student transcripts will be evaluated by Admissions. All general education/liberal arts courses that meet core College requirements for baccalaureate degrees will be eligible for transfer according to College policy. The transfer of nursing credits is evaluated on an individual basis according to the program's policy. Students must have a minimum grade of 'C' (2.00) in courses transferred into the BSN major. All Penn College associate-degree requirements will apply toward bachelor-degree requirements. A block of 33 nursing credits will be transferred from NLNAC-accredited associate-degree and diploma nursing curricula.

International health credentials/licensure, sciences courses, and most math courses will not be accepted to satisfy requirements of this major. Please see additional information for international students applying to Health Sciences majors.

Program Goals

A graduate of this major should be able to:

  • engage as a generalist, synthesizing knowledge from nursing, liberal arts, and sciences to provide consumer-centered care that is evidence-based, theory-guided, holistic and culturally competent (Consumer-centered Care & Evidenced-based Practice).
  • facilitate the teaching-learning process to promote health and prevent disease in populations across the lifespan (Teaching and Learning).
  • use therapeutic communication to partner with and advocate for the health care needs of clients of all ages, families, and communities in a variety of health care settings (Communication).
  • utilize informatics to analyze research findings and identify research problems related to the nursing care of diverse consumers (Informatics).
  • apply leadership and management skills in developing collaborative, professional relationships with multidisciplinary health care providers to improve the delivery of health care (Professional Behaviors).
  • establish ethical, political, and legal accountability and take responsibility for one's own practice, professional growth, life-long learning, and the development of the profession in an atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding (Professional Behaviors).
  • direct and facilitate the use of the nursing process to optimize patient outcomes throughout the lifespan and across the continuum of health care environments (Nursing Process).


Pre. ProgramCredits
NUR302Credentials Proven by License 33 
First SemesterCredits
BIO115Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4 
ENL111English Composition I 3 
PSY111General Psychology 3 
MNAMath Elective (MTH124 or Higher) 3 
CORLiberal Arts Elective 3 
Second SemesterCredits
SCLScience Elective with lab 4 
CSC124Information, Technology, and Society 3 
ENL121English Composition II 3 
ENL201Technical and Professional Communication 3 
PSY203Developmental Psychology 3 
SOC111Introduction to Sociology 3 
Third SemesterCredits
NUR311The Philosophy of Professional Nursing 3 
NUR383Advanced Physical Assessment 3 
NUR375Critical Thinking in Health Care 2 
HTH310Health Issues and Transitions 3 Writing Enriched Requirement &
Cultural Diversity Requirement &
Science, Technology and Society Requirement
SPC101Fundamentals of Speech 3 
SPC201Interpersonal Communication 3 
FITFitness and Lifetime Sports Elective 1 
Fourth SemesterCredits
NUR327Community Health Nursing 4 
NUR352Teaching and Learning Concepts and Strategies 3 
ARTArt Elective 3 
PHL210Ethics 3 
OEAOpen Elective / Associate 3 
Fifth SemesterCredits
NUR412Explorations in Clinical Practice 4 
BSTNursing Special Topics Elective 3 
BSENursing Seminar Elective 1 
MTH160Elementary Statistics with Computer Applications 4 
FITFitness and Lifetime Sports Elective 1 
Sixth SemesterCredits
NUR461Leadership and Management in Nursing 3 
NUR495Research and Theory in Clinical Practice 4 Writing Enriched Requirement
BSTNursing Special Topics Elective 3 
BSENursing Seminar Elective 1 
OEAOpen Elective / Associate 3 
NEIProven BSN Exit Interview  

Notice of Conviction

Child abuse clearance and criminal background checks are required by some agencies involved in fieldwork and/or capstones. Agencies can bar students from their sites if a criminal record exists or a positive drug test is noted. By virtue of contract for Penn College students to be at clinical sites, agencies have the right to ask for random drug testing. Inability to gain clinical or fieldwork or intern education experiences results in inability to meet program objectives and outcomes. For additional clarification, students can speak with their program director.


The bachelor's degree in Nursing is fully accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and is approved by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing. For further information, contact the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) at 3343 Peachtree Rd. NE, Suite 850, Atlanta GA 30326; 404-975-5000.

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