Nursing, Bachelor of Science (RN to BSN)

Program Overview

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing is a degree completion program for registered nurses. The program provides a smooth transition for Registered Nurses furthering their education and careers, and serves the community and our society by meeting the need for increased numbers of highly skilled and knowledgeable nursing professionals. Program emphasis is on professional development in communication, critical thinking, community health, research, and leadership. Advanced standing credits are awarded for past nursing coursework. The program is delivered in an online format with a part-time or full-time option.

Program Outcomes

The objective of the curriculum is to produce baccalaureate-prepared, registered professional nurse graduates who can:

  • Utilize critical thinking, clinical reasoning, and research in evidence-based decision making to improve nursing practice and patient outcomes across healthcare settings
  • Apply contemporary leadership and management concepts and theories to innovate practice environments, problem solve and effect change
  • Apply legal and ethical concepts, theories, and standards to professional nursing practice
  • Communicate with patients, families, and healthcare providers to coordinate care and advocate for vulnerable populations across healthcare settings
  • Integrate a variety of concepts related to trends and issues in contemporary nursing to foster professional role development
  • Analyze how advanced technologies may be used in practice to improve patient care
  • Contribute to the profession by performing as a team member, delegating effectively, and mentoring other nurses
  • Analyze the role of health care policy, politics, and quality improvement in promoting healthy populations and the nursing profession
  • Apply theories, interventions, and health promotion and disease prevention strategies to promote physically safe and healthy environments for culturally diverse individuals, families, and groups in a variety of community settings and situations
  • Apply knowledge and skills specific to roles in education, clinical practice, or informatics for professional practice and career advancement
  • Demonstrate accountability and responsibility to nursing practice and value life-long learning and reflective practice
For additional information about the program To see the Student Consumer Information link to: which provides additional information on the future careers, success, cost, and financing for this program. For information on the University Completion and Graduation Rates, please see About ECPI University on the ECPI website.

About Nursing

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduate is eligible for roles in leadership and management, community health, informatics, and specialty bedside practice. Nurses holding a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree may pursue advanced education that may lead to specialized practice. Graduates of this program can work in many different healthcare settings, such as hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and community health facilities.

A state-issued license to practice as an RN, a background check, drug screening, up-to-date immunizations, TB testing, and CPR certification are all often required of BSN graduates in their careers.

Nurses who have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree are often placed in leadership positions after they have gained significant work experience. Some positions include: Case Manager, Charge Nurse, or Unit Manager.

Program Outline

To receive the Bachelor of Science in Nursing, students must earn a minimum of 120 credit hours, which includes 20 pre-requisite credits and 50 advanced standing credits from the required associate degree or diploma in nursing. The degree completion program consists of 50 semester credits, which can be completed in a minimum of 3 semesters, which is equivalent to 11 months or 45 weeks of instruction for the full-time option (2 courses per term). The program requirements are as follows:

Program Requirements

Upper Level Program Curriculum

27 semester credit hours

NUR300RN-BSN Orientation


NUR302Foundations of Professional Nursing Practice




NUR340Health Assessment


NUR350Nursing Research & Evidence-Based Practice


NUR430Leading and Managing for Innovation


NUR443Community Health Nursing


NUR444LCommunity Health Lab


NUR456Senior Practicum


NUR490Nursing Capstone


Interdisciplinary Studies

5 semester credit hours
CIS108Office Applications


HCA400Health Information Systems


Upper Level Arts and Sciences*

18 semester credit hours

CAP480Arts and Sciences Capstone


COM115Principles of Communication


ENG120Advanced Composition




PSY300Human Growth and Development


SOC100Introduction to Sociology


*For allowable substitutions of arts and sciences courses, see the Arts & Sciences Department page.

Nursing Program - Specific Policies

Admissions Requirements. The RN to BSN Completion Program requires applicants to have an associate degree or diploma in nursing. All applicants must hold a valid, unencumbered license to practice registered nursing in their state of residence, and have a 2.5 GPA or better in the past nursing program. Students who do not meet the 2.5 GPA requirement may apply for admission to the RN to BSN program on a provisional status. Upon successful completion of the first semester of the nursing curriculum, a student may apply for a change of status from provisional admission to the full admission. All applicants are required to submit a resume demonstrating work experience as an RN.

The full-time program is 45 weeks (9, five-week terms) in length. The part-time option is 17 terms. The classes are delivered online. All of the upper level general education courses are available online. One course requires a practical experience (NUR456), one course (NUR444L) requires a virtual lab (30 hours), and one course requires lab practice (NUR340). 

Students are required to successfully complete an Online campus' orientation before they are enrolled for classes. In addition, students are encouraged to take an online tutorial available via the internet at . These resources provide information on the nature of faculty/student interaction, prerequisite technology competencies, and skills, technical equipment requirements, and availability of academic support services information pertaining to technical requirements, etc.

Disclosure. Requirements regarding distance education and practicum experiences vary from state to state. The student’s initial program application is reviewed using the address provided upon enrollment to determine individual ability to complete the program and practicum requirements in the student’s state.

It is the responsibility of the student to inform the Program Director and ECPI University of address changes prior to relocation. Changing the state of residence during the course of the RN to BSN program may alter the ability of students to complete the RN to BSN program.

Attendance. Attendance and participation is required. The attendance policy requirements for online classes are documented in each individual course. For courses with a practical experience component, students will be required to attend scheduled experiences as described in their course syllabus. A student may be dropped from a course if the student is absent more than 20% of the scheduled total course hours (classroom and clinical).

Essential Functional Abilities. Nursing is a profession that requires specific abilities. Students must be able to complete the minimal level of abilities to practice as a nurse as published by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. RNs should be able to fully function in the following areas:

  • Physical (gross and the fine motor, physical endurance, physical strength, mobility)
  • Sensory (visual, tactile, olfactory, hearing)
  • Cognitive (reading, arithmetic, analytical and critical thinking)
  • Interactive (interpersonal, communicative)
  • Contact the Program Director for questions or more information if you have questions about any one or all of the essential functional abilities. Also see the catalog section on Americans with Disabilities Act.

Late Assignments. Written assignments must be submitted on time. All assignments will be submitted electronically to the classroom assignment page established for the assignment. If the classroom server is down, students may submit the assignment to the faculty member‘s email address by the deadline and later post the assignment to the assignment page.

Make-up examinations are at the sole discretion of the course faculty member and are discouraged.

Program Purpose. The program is dedicated to providing education opportunities for qualified registered nurse students from diverse backgrounds in caring for individuals, families, and communities and preparing graduates for the practice in a variety of healthcare settings. A foundation for lifelong personal and professional learning is built upon a broad base of liberal arts and sciences, humanities, and nursing theory to assist students to develop ethically reflective professional nursing skills that will uphold the ideals of today‘s healthcare delivery system. Through evidence-based clinical decision-making in nursing practice the development of leadership skills, the professional registered nurse will be educated to service and benefit a multicultural society across the lifespan.

Philosophy of the RN to BSN Program. The RN to BSN program believes that:

  • Each individual is a unique person having dignity and worth. Individuals, as members of the family and the community, are shaped by cultural, physiological, psychosocial, spiritual, and developmental forces. The family and the community influence early beliefs and values of individuals, and in turn individuals contribute to the effective functioning of the family and community.
  • Nursing is both an art and a science grounded in a social context and related to experiences with people in need. It is based on a specific body of nursing theory and principles from behavioral and social sciences. Nursing is an interpersonal process and involves the application of knowledge, technical and collaborative skills, critical thinking, and creative problem-solving. The focus of nursing is on caring for individuals, families, or client groups. By using the nursing process, nurses promote, maintain, and restore clients‘ health as well as provide compassionate care to the dying. As healthcare providers, nurses engage in a collaborative practice that focuses on outcomes and adheres to practice guidelines that ensure quality and access.
  • Professional values and value-based interventions are fundamental to nursing education. As the basis for professional nursing practice, values and value-based actions may be viewed as ethically reflective practice that the nursing student uses to interact with patients, healthcare professionals, and society.
  • Teaching and learning are life-long interactive processes through which active inquiry and participation result in a change in behavior. A teaching/learning process is facilitated when the learner and teacher share responsibility for outcomes. Learning is facilitated when content is presented in an orderly sequential manner (i.e. simple to complex, known to unknown, normal or abnormal, general to specific).
  • Critical thinking, clinical competence, accountability, and a commitment to the value of caring is necessary to maintain or restore clients to their optimum state of health and to provide the support which allows death with dignity. As the provider of care, the nurse‘s commitment to client/family-centered care will facilitate successful preparation for practice in various healthcare settings.
  • It is essential that the nurse have current knowledge in nursing concepts, principles, processes, and skills. Supportive of that knowledge is an understanding of health, acute and chronic health deviations, nutrition, pharmacology, communication, human development, teaching/learning principles, current technology, humanities, and biological, social, and behavioral sciences.
  • The RN to BSN program builds on the fundamental knowledge and skills acquired in associate degree and diploma nursing programs. The BSN graduate is prepared to care for individuals as well as families, groups and communities utilizing evidence-based practice. The BSN graduate will be prepared to serve in the roles of healthcare leader, care manager, community collaborator, and contributor to the profession of nursing.

Organizing Framework of the RN to BSN Program. This diagram represents the organizing framework of the RN to BSN program at ECPI University. The program is designed to build upon knowledge acquired in diploma and associate degree RN programs and offers courses that develop registered nurses to be healthcare leaders, community collaborators, care managers, and contributors to the profession. These four roles provide the basis for the program outcomes.




Prerequisite Courses. (Must be greater than or equal to 100 level College Courses Only)

  • College English (3 credit hours)
  • College Algebra (3 credit hours)
  • Anatomy & Physiology I & II (8 credit hours)
  • Psychology (3 credit hours)
  • Humanities (3 credit hours)

Progression. Students must achieve a grade of C+ or higher in all NUR courses to progress. If a student fails a nursing course, they meet with the nursing program director. If a second failure occurs in any course in the program, the student is placed on probation. If a third failure occurs, the student is dismissed from the program. All catalog policies apply to RN to BSN students.

Students declare the part-time (PT) or full-time (FT) curriculum at the time of application. Students may request a one-time change from the FT to PT program by speaking to the nursing program director.

Student Evaluation. The faculty uses the objectives of the overall program and individual courses as criteria for student evaluation. A developmental student portfolio is created across the curriculum and submitted as evidence of accomplishment of the program outcomes in the final nursing course. Student grades are determined by a variety of formative and summative evaluation methods.