School of Professional Studies

Nursing Department : RN to BS Program in Nursing

Self-Advisement Guide for Registered Nurse Students

The baccalaureate degree in nursing requires completion of three components: General Education Requirements, Major Requirements, and Electives.  It is generally “safe” to take any of the following courses:


Writing and Communications Skills

Most RN students have some type of composition course, but do not have a speech course.  A writing intensive course is required.


Most RN students have one or two humanities courses.  The BS in Nursing degree requires five (5) such courses.  You can safely take any humanities course that meets General Education requirements.

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Most RN students have taken PSY 100 and SOC 100 or equivalent, or are able to test out of these courses.  Most RN students have also completed a child psychology or developmental psychology course.  Many have other social science courses that can be transferred toward degree requirements.  It is safest to leave this category alone until your transcripts have been evaluated and you know where the “holes” are.

Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and Computer Science

Many students come with a laboratory science course, but need a statistics course.

  • MAT 115 Introduction to Biostatistics or MAT 120 Elementary Statistics
  • A laboratory science course
  • One additional course in either the natural sciences, mathematics, or computer science

Please note that placement tests are required for the statistics courses.  A working knowledge of intermediate algebra is essential to succeed on the placement tests and in these courses.

Physical Education

HPX 177, Fitness for Life for two credits is required of all students, except those with a medical waiver or documented military service.


Non-Nursing Cognate Courses

Virtually all RN students have the package of courses required of all students in the nursing program, or can test out of them.  These are

  • BIO 105 – 106         Anatomy & Physiology I and II
  • BIO 215                  Microbiology
  • HSC 205                 Nutrition and Health

You must have completed the BIO courses within the past 10 years to receive credit for them, as well as have earned a grade of C or better for transfer credit to be awarded.  If you cannot satisfy these requirements, you can elect to take the National League for Nursing achievement tests in Anatomy & Physiology and Microbiology.


You may take up to two NUR-labeled courses, to be selected from the list below, prior to full admission to the RN-BS program.

  • NUR 220, Transition to Professional Nursing Practice
  • NUR 221, Physical Assessment Across the Life Span
  • NUR 301, Nursing Leadership in Health Care Organizations
  • NUR 329, Principles of Community Health Nursing
  • NUR 332, Pharmacology, Pathophysiology, and Nursing Practice
  • NUR 361, Research Process in Nursing (Pre-requisite: MAT 115 or 120)


Eight (8) semester hours of free electives are permitted in this degree.  However, some of your transfer credits will be allocated toward free elective, so it is wiser not to take a course to satisfy elective credit requirements until you know you need to.  However, if you have a burning desire to take a course that does not fit into one of the established categories, do so; that’s what education is about.

Please arrange to meet with the RN-BS Program Coordinator or another faculty member to discuss the program in depth, answer your questions, and plan your academic life for the next year or two.