RN to BS Program - Frequently Asked Questions

The faculty of the Department of Nursing at Western Connecticut State University (WCSU) believe that qualified Registered Nurses (RNs) who have graduated from associate degree and hospital-based diploma programs in nursing should have the opportunity to continue their formal education toward the baccalaureate degree in nursing. The Department offers these nurses a course of study leading to the degree of Bachelor of Science (BS) with a major in Nursing within its Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)-accredited program.

Who is eligible to apply for admission?

Graduates of associate degree and hospital-based diploma programs who hold current RN licensure in any state may apply for admission. Following admission a student will be required to obtain RN licensure in CT. Study may be pursued on a full- or part-time basis.

What are the requirements for the degree?

RN to BS Nursing applicants must meet the academic requirements of the University and Nursing Department. All applicants must hold a Registered Nursing license before they can be admitted to the program, as well as submit all application credentials required, to be eligible for admission to the program.  Candidates for the degree must earn a minimum of 30 credits from WCSU, of which 28 are required NUR labeled credits, in addition to completing other requirements for the degree.

Transfer students must complete a minimum of half of the credits for the major at WCSU. Overall, students must complete a minimum of 30 credits at WCSU. Transfer students wishing to graduate with high honors must complete a minimum of 45 credits at WCSU.  For more information on transfer credits, please email Nicole Kullberg at kullbergn@wcsu.edu

Because RN students enter the program with very varied academic backgrounds, academic advisement is essential from the beginning of the program to ensure efficient progress toward the degree.  The RN-BS Coordinator can assist you in course selection and in planning your curriculum as you progress through the program.

Can I get credit for non-nursing course work completed elsewhere?

Students who have completed course work at other accredited institutions of higher education may apply for transfer of credit to the University.  Acceptance of earned credit for transfer, and application of those credits to specific course requirements, is determined by the Office of Admissions.  Transcript evaluation is done upon formal application for admission to the University.  All RN students are urged to apply for admission early in their studies in order to obtain official acceptance of credit offered in transfer.  The evaluation of transfer credit is done only after an applicant has completed their application. After which, the student will receive a program plan indicating how transfer credit has been applied toward program requirements.

Science courses must have been completed in the last 10 years to be accepted for transfer credit.
If you have questions or would like an unofficial transfer credit evaluation, please email Nicole Kullberg at kullbergn@wcsu.edu for more information.

What about my nursing courses?

WCSU is a participant in the Connecticut Articulation Model for Nurse Educational Mobility. Under the model, RN graduates of associate degree and diploma-nursing education programs may be eligible for up to 30 advanced placement credits in nursing and 30 credits in general education. Grades of C or better are required in each course offered for transfer and/or advanced placement credit.

Can I earn credit by examination?

The University and the Department of Nursing provide opportunities for students to earn credit by examination in a variety of courses.  

Credit by examination can be earned for certain foundational courses required for the Nursing major. These include Anatomy and Physiology (BIO 105-106) for 8 credits, Microbiology (BIO 215) for 4 credits, and Nutrition and Health (HPX 205) for 2 credits. For these subject areas, the Nursing Department administers the National League for Nursing subject matter examinations in Anatomy and Physiology, Microbiology, and Normal Nutrition.  Pre-registration and pre-payment are required. A non-refundable fee for each examination is payable when registering for the examination. Checks or money orders should be made payable to Western Connecticut State University. Students are informed by letter regarding their successful completion of an examination.  Each examination may be repeated once.  Study guides for each examination are available.

Students may also take CLEP examinations towards their degree to complete general education requirements. Your advisor can assist you in selecting exams that are accepted by WCSU and are applicable to the RN to BS Nursing program. For more information, please visit http://www.wcsu.edu/testing/

How long does it take?

It is possible to complete degree requirements in two years. Many RN students choose to pursue the degree part-time, at least in the beginning. There is no limit on the number of years to complete degree requirements.

How do I apply?

Applicants can apply for Fall or Spring admission by filling out an application on-line or print out an application from our website. Paper applications are available from the Admissions Office, or from the WCSU Waterbury Office in Founders Hall 204a, 750 Chase Parkway, Waterbury, CT 06708 (203-598-8777). RN students may apply for full or part-time study. Please notify Nicole Kullberg at kullbergn@wcsu.edu when you are ready to apply and forward your transcripts to WCSU, 181 White St OM 207, Danbury, CT 06810. Applications and credentials can also be dropped off to WCSU Waterbury office in Founders Hall 204a (see address above).

How do I begin my studies?

RN students may begin studies at the University to complete general education and prerequisite courses in either the Fall and Spring semesters, or during the summer. Courses taken prior to full admission are fully applicable toward degree requirements. Students may take up to, but no more than, six credits in nursing courses prior to being fully admitted to the University. This is on a space-available basis. If you are interested in taking courses as a non-matriculated student, please contact WCSU Waterbury at 203-596-8777 for more information.  If you would like an unofficial evaluation of your transfer credits, please email Nicole Kullberg at kullbergn@wcsu.eduto set up an appointment.

I’m a Registered Nurse, but have completed a bachelor’s degree in another field. Will I need to earn the bachelor’s of nursing in order to move on for my MSN at Western?

If you hold a bachelor's degree in another field and are interested in pursuing a master's degree in nursing at WCSU, you must complete an application to the MS Nursing program. Once the application is completed, the Graduate Coordinator, Dr. Halloran, will contact you regarding your application to the program. 


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