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BSN Pre-Licensure Program

nursing student with patient


Learn about our outstanding BSN program and tour our state-of-the-art nursing labs at the upcoming, in-person Open Houses.

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program prepares you to begin the practice of professional nursing. Upon graduating, you will be eligible to apply to sit for the National Council of State Boards of Nursing licensure examination for registered nurses (NCLEX-RN).

Students will take courses centered around the nursing profession that build off of prerequsite courses taken prior to entry into the program. Courses will be held on the main campus at the Health and Human Sciences Building. Along with traditional lecture courses and lab simulations, students will recieve clinical instruction at healthcare institutions and agencies in rural and urban areas across Western North Carolina beginning the first semester of the program.

Application to the BSN program is completed online through NursingCAS. Admission is granted twice a year with cohorts beginning in the Fall and Spring semesters. Undergraduate students attending WCU will apply to the nursing program once they have completed all pre-requisites, typically after their sophomore year. The admissions process is highly competitive. Students planning to pursue the BSN program should maintain a competitive GPA and to read and complete all admission and prerequisite requirements listed below.

The suggested curriculum plan is laid out Freshman through Senior year in the 8-semester plan.

As each student's situation will vary students should communicate with their advisor to complete their liberal studies and University requirements for graduation.

Thanks to NC Promise, tuition for all undergraduate students at WCU is $500 per fall and spring semesters for in-state students and $2,500 for out-of-state students. Students admitted into the BSN program will be required to make additional purchases for supplies and other requirements as needed for class and clinical placement throughout the program.


To be eligible to apply and be considered for admission, students must complete the following admission requirements. Applicants are encouraged to use the Pre-requisite Worksheet to keep track of their completed and still needed entrance requirements:

  1. Western Carolina University Application (if not already a student)
    • Transfer students must complete the WCU Transfer Application and provide all offical transcripts to the admissions office
  2. Minimum Cumulative GPA of 3.0
  3. ACT Scores
    • Official high school scores are acceptable. A "super score" using the highest individual score for each subject will be used.
    • Applicants needing to take or retake the exam can do so through the Testing Center at WCU or an approved ACT testing site.
  4. Test of Essential Acadmic Skills Score (TEAS)
  5. Science Pre-requisites - At least 3 of the science pre-requisites must have a final grade of 'C' or better prior to the application deadline. The remaining pre-requisites must be completed prior to program matriculation/start.
    1. Chemistry 132 – Introductory Chemistry with lab (4hr) or higher

    2. Biology 291 – Human Anatomy & Physiology with lab (4hr)
    3. Biology 292 – Human Anatomy & Physiology with lab (4hr)

    4. Environmental Health 260/261 – Etiology of Infectious Disease with lab (3hr) 

  6. Nursing Prerequisites - Both must be completed with a grade of 'C' or better prior to program matriculation
    1. ND 330 – Human Nutritional Needs
    2. NSG 346 – Pathophysiology for Nursing [Note: This course may only be repeated once for a total of two attempts]
  7. Liberal Sudies Prerequisites - The courses listed below must be completed with a grade of 'C' or higher prior to starting the program. All remaining liberal studies requirements must be completed by prior to the final year of the program. 
    1. C1: ENGL 101 & ENGL 202 – Writing and Rhetoric & Writing and Critical Inquiry
    2. C2: MAT 170: Applied Statistics
    3. C3: COMM 201 – Foundations of Communication
    4. PSY 150 – General Psychology (counts as a P1)
    5. C4: HEAL 111, OR HEAL 123, OR HSCC 101 – Nutrition, Fitness & Wellness
  8. 60 Credit Hours - Applicants must have a minimum of 60 hours of completed coursework (recommended 63 hours) prior to program matriculation.
  9. Complete the BSN Program Application

Transfer Course Credits:
If courses were completed at another institution, course equivalents with grades of a 'C' (2.0) or higher may be accepted. You can check how your courses will transfer into WCU by using the Credits Earned Elsewhere tool. 

The BSN program application should only be completed by students who have already completed or will complete the pre-requisites described above before matriculating into the program. Applicants should follow the Complete Application Instructions. All application materials must be received by the application deadlines. 

Application Deadlines:
Fall Entry

Spring Entry

NEW: A limited number of NCAS fee waivers for based on financial need or service are available through NursingCAS.

Transfer students will need to submit a WCU Transfer Application for admission to WCU as an "undeclared-interested in nursing" student. Some program pre-requisite courses are unique to WCU, specifically NSG 346 - Pathophysiology for Nursing, most transfer students will attend WCU for at least one semester before being eligible to apply to the BSN program. 

To allow time for receipt and processing of transcripts transfer students should complete a WCU application and submit all transcripts at least 10 days prior to the program application deadline. A program application will also be required.  

Applicants are responsible for reviewing the admission and prerequisite requirements in advance of the application deadline. University admissions and/or meeting the minimum requirements for program admission does not guarantee acceptance into the BSN Program.

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