Undergraduate Catalog 2021-2022

Nursing B.S.N. – RN-BSN Emphasis (Registered Nurse Seeking Bachelor of Science in Nursing)

College of Natural and Health Sciences

Contact: Melissa Henry, Ph.D., Interim Director

Location: Gunter 3080

Telephone: 970.351.2293

Website: www.unco.edu/nhs/nursing

Advising Information:

Students must consult with their assigned major advisor each semester prior to registering.

To find your advisor, log into ursa.unco.edu; go to 'Student' tab and click 'View Student Information' link. If no advisor is listed, contact the major program for advisor information.

The program consists of four parts:

  1. Liberal Arts Curriculum (LAC) Credits
  2. Required Major Credits
  3. Colorado Nursing Articulation Agreement Credits
  4. University-Wide Credits

Program Description:

The RN-BSN program in nursing is a five semester program leading to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. Nursing is an independent professional discipline requiring critical inquiry and discriminating judgment to assist individuals, families and communities to attain and maintain health. Qualified students are further prepared as professional nurses and receive a foundation for graduate study in nursing.

RN-BSN Admission: Forms for applying to the RN-BSN program and information about application procedures are obtained on the School of Nursing website year round.

The following factors will be considered by the nursing faculty in the selection of students:

  • GPA is calculated on the most recent 45 non-remedial credits from UNC or other institutions and must be 2.5 GPA or above. Contact the School of Nursing for specifics on the GPA calculation.
  • Only applicants who have earned a grade of C or better (C- is not acceptable) in each of the prerequisite courses or course equivalents will be considered for admission. If an applicant is admitted to the RN-BSN program, then earns less than a grade of C in any of the prerequisite courses or course equivalents, their admission to the Nursing program will be rescinded.

The number of students admitted to the RN-BSN nursing program is determined by available resources. Available resources may also limit possibilities for readmission to the program for those students who withdraw for any reason.

All students entering the RN-BSN program must be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for the adult and child/infant (health professional) as evidenced by current CPR card. This certification must be maintained while in the program. CPR courses are available outside the School of Nursing.

Nursing Articulation: The Colorado Council for Nursing Education (CCNE) affirms that students from an accredited program should be considered eligible for enrollment into the next higher level of education (e.g. LPN to ADN, ADN to BSN). All articulating students must meet program admission requirements and non-nursing course requirements specific to the receiving institution.

Dual Enrollment: Students may take the RN-BSN courses (using an alternate course sequencing) while concurrently enrolled in an affiliated Colorado Community College.  The nursing articulation for dually enrolled students will be applied at the completion of the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree.

RN-BSN Progression: The length of the program for the registered nurse depends upon the amount of transfer credit and successful completion of prerequisite course challenge examinations, if needed. The Colorado Nursing Articulation Model permits RNs to receive credit for prior nursing course work. Individuals seeking admission must be admitted to the University of Northern Colorado following the procedures outlined in this Catalog. Students should contact the School of Nursing at the same time for information about RN criteria for admission to the nursing major and the specifics of the RN-BSN program.

Policies: School of Nursing policies are published in the required Student Handbook.

Missed or Repeated Courses: Students who must repeat a nursing course or who fail to enroll or complete a course on their scheduled rotation will be readmitted for RN-BSN courses on a space-available basis only. Courses may not be offered every semester.

Successive Enrollment: A student who does not enroll for either required support courses or nursing courses for two successive semesters and has not made prior arrangements with the Assistant Director will not be considered an active RN-BSN student.

Graduation and Licensure: The Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree will be granted by the Board of Trustees upon recommendation of the faculty of the School of Nursing to those students who have successfully completed the prescribed curriculum with an average of “C” or above.

RN licensure or Dual Enrollment status (see Dual Enrollment above) is required for admission into the program.

Health Policies: Prior to the first clinical course, students are responsible to obtain necessary health clearances and/or immunizations as required. Yearly PPD, influenza and completion of OSHA testing are required.

Criminal Background Check/Drug Screen: To comply with clinical agency requirements, all students are required to submit evidence that a criminal background check and drug screen has been completed.

School Nurse Provisional Licensure: Graduates seeking School Nurse Licensure should contact the Teacher Education and Certification Unit of The Colorado Department of Education at 201 E. Colfax Avenue, Denver, Colorado 80203 for an application packet.

Clinical Practice: Student clinical experiences are offered in agencies according to available resources. All placements require transportation. Students are responsible for their own transportation to all clinical practicum.

Program Admission Requirements:

Academic Good Standing

Program Requirements:

A minimum grade of “C” or better (C- is not acceptable) or satisfactory in all nursing courses required for progression to the next semester must be earned.  

Degree Requirements — 120 Credits

1. Liberal Arts Curriculum — 31 credits

To complete the degree in 120 credits as outlined, the program recommends the below LAC courses that also count toward the 53 required major credits.

Any additional coursework completed outside of the recommended list below may extend the length of the program of study.

Written Communication — 6 credits

ENG 123 (3) is recommended to fulfill the Intermediate Writing Course requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Written Communication courses

Mathematics — 3 credits

STAT 150 (3) is recommended to fulfill Mathematics requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Mathematics courses

Arts & Humanities, History, Social & Behavioral Sciences, U.S. Multicultural Studies, and International Studies — 15 credits

PSY 230 (3) is recommended to fulfill Social & Behavioral Sciences requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Arts & Humanities, History, and Social & Behavioral Sciences courses

Natural & Physical Sciences — 7 credits

FND 250 (3) is recommended to fulfill Natural & Physical Sciences requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Natural & Physical Sciences courses

See Liberal Arts Curriculum

2. Required Major — 53 credits (RN students seeking a B.S.N.)

Take all of the following courses:

NURS 303Transition to Baccalaureate Nursing


NURS 305Professional Nursing Concepts


NURS 329Health Assessment - RN/BSN


NURS 380Research and Evidence Based Practice


NURS 382Patient Centered Care Concepts Across the Lifespan


NURS 383Current Issues in Health Care RN/BSN


NURS 405Theory and Principles of Public Health Nursing: Population-Based Practice


NURS 406Population-Based Practice - RN/BSN


NURS 470Clinical Practice: Professionalism in Practice


NURS 480Professionalism in Practice: Leadership and Management


BIO 245Introduction to Human Anatomy and Physiology


BIO 246Advanced Human Anatomy and Physiology


BIO 251Allied Health Microbiology


ENG 123College Research PaperLAW2


FND 250Principles of NutritionLAS1


PSY 230Lifespan DevelopmentLAB3


STAT 150Introduction to Statistical AnalysisLAX1


BIO 245 (4), BIO 246 (3), BIO 251 (4), ENG 123 (3), FND 250 (3), PSY 230 (3), STAT 150 (3) are prerequisite courses required to be completed prior to admission to the RN-BSN Nursing Program.

3. Colorado Nursing Articulation Agreement — 40 credits

The student is awarded 40 credits of upper division nursing coursework upon completion of the Associate Degree program, passing the NCLEX, and 13 credits of the UNC RN-BSN nursing curriculum.

4. University-Wide Credits — 0 credits*

*Note: Students must apply the recommended courses to both the liberal arts curriculum requirements and the major requirements to complete this degree program in 120 credit hours. Students may have an increased number of university wide electives to apply to this degree depending on the number of credits applied to both the LAC and the major. See your advisor for details.

NOTE: Students in the RN-BSN program are exempt from completing 20 of the last 30 semester credit hours of their degree program with UNC courses; 30 semester credit hours of the degree must still be taken in UNC courses.