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Bachelor of Science

Prelicensure Nursing BSN

Because You Care

OVERVIEW

One Program to Become Both an RN and Earn a BSN


 

If you are looking to become a registered nurse and live in Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, or Utah, this nursing program could be for you. In areas where this program is available, WGU has partnerships with healthcare employers who provide practice sites and clinical coaches to help teach and inspire you on your path to becoming a nurse. WGU Clinical Learning and Simulation Centers (labs) are located in Utah, Texas, Missouri, Indiana, and Florida.

Learn more about navigating through your Enrollment Portal.

States where the Prelicensure BSN Program is Offered

The Florida Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer the prelicensure program in the Sunshine State. WGU enrolls Floridians to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at a Florida-based regional simulation lab, and participate in clinical experiences in Florida. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical placement opportunities:

  • Jacksonville
  • Daytona
  • Orlando
  • Tampa
  • Ft Lauderdale

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

Idaho: The Idaho Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer clinical placements in the Gem State. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Idahoans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Idaho. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Boise
  • Idaho Falls

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

The Indiana Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer the prelicensure program in the Hoosier State. WGU enrolls Hoosiers to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at an Indiana-based regional simulation lab, and participate in clinical experiences in Indiana. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Indianapolis
  • Michigan City
  • Ft. Wayne
  • Princeton

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in Iowa. The Iowa Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Iowans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Iowa. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Des Moines

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in Kansas. The Kansas Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Kansans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Kansas. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Kansas City/Overland Park
  • Topeka

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in Kentucky. The Kentucky Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Kentuckians to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Kentucky. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Louisville
  • Lexington

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in Michigan. The Michigan Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Michiganders to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Michigan. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Detroit
  • Grand Rapids

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

The Missouri Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer the prelicensure program in the Show-Me State. WGU enrolls Missourians to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at the regional simulation lab in Kansas City, and participate in clinical experiences in Missouri. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.  licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Kansas City
  • Clinton
  • St. Louis
  • Springfield

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

The Nevada Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer clinical placements in the Silver State. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Nevadans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences in one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Nevada. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Las Vegas
  • Reno
  • Winnemucca
  • Elko

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in New Mexico. The New Mexico Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls New Mexicans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in New Mexico. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Albuquerque
  • Las Cruces

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in North Carolina. The North Carolina Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls North Carolinians to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in North Carolina. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Charlotte
  • Raleigh/Durham

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

Completion of the prelicensure program satisfies the applicable requirements to obtain a license as a nurse in Ohio. The Ohio Board of Nursing does not approve programs originating out of state. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Ohioans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Ohio. For additional questions about how you will obtain your license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Columbus
  • Cincinnati
  • Cleveland
  • Toledo
  • Dayton
  • Sandusky

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

The Oklahoma Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer clinical placements in the Sooner State. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls Oklahomans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Oklahoma. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Oklahoma City
  • Tulsa

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

The South Carolina Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer clinical placements in the Palmetto State. WGU's Utah-based program enrolls South Carolinians to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in South Carolina. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Columbia
  • Charleston

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

WGU is approved by the Tennessee Board of Nursing. WGU's prelicensure program enrolls Tennesseans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at one of the regional simulation labs, and participate in clinical experiences in Tennessee. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Nashville
  • Memphis
  • Knoxville
  • Chattanooga

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

The Texas Board of Nursing approved Western Governors University to offer the prelicensure program in the Lone Star State. WGU enrolls Texans to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at the regional simulation lab in Houston, and participate in clinical experiences in Texas. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunites:

  • Houston
  • Beaumont
  • College Station
  • Lufkin
  • Dallas
  • Waco
  • Austin
  • San Antonio
  • Weslaco
  • Midland/Odessa
  • El Paso

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary. 

WGU’s programmatically accredited prelicensure program satisfies the applicable prerequisites established by the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing for an initial nursing license in the state. WGU's prelicensure program enrolls Utahns to take their program from home, complete their two four-day-long lab experiences at the regional simulation lab in Salt Lake City, and participate in clinical experiences in Utah. For additional questions about how you will obtain a license as a nurse, contact licensure@wgu.edu.

Districts with clinical opportunities:

  • Salt Lake City
  • Logan
  • St. George

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Clinical opportunities are available within 60 miles of the district listed. Students can be placed at clinical partner sites throughout the 60 mile radius.

Students will travel to lab twice during their program to a WGU regional learning lab center. Efforts are made to assign students to the regional lab that aligns with their clinical district. There may be situations where the regional lab aligning with the clinical district is unavailable. When that occurs, students will be placed at an alternate regional learning lab location.

Program start dates vary.

If you don't live in one of the states listed above, there is an alternative route for patient care through our Bachelor's of Science in Health and Human Services degree. This degree allows you to still be involved with patients by working to help with insurance, payments, and other details of healthcare that can be confusing and frustrating. If you want to work with patients, but our nursing degree isn't feasible, consider the Health and Human Services degree instead.

This program is paced to have a completion time of 

4 Years

You will be expected to complete all required credits assigned each 6-month term. Students may be able to accelerate some portions of the program.

Tuition per six-month term is

$6,430 then $8,755

During the pre-nursing terms students pay $6,430 per six-months, then during the clinical nursing terms students pay $8,755 per six-months.

Expect to spend about

30 hours/week

on your studies, assessments, and in the completion of clinical rotations and simulation labs.

Next Start Date:
Varies

If admitted, WGU will grant a start date based on a variety of factors.

HOW IT WORKS

Pre-Nursing and Clinical Nursing Portions

Pre-Nursing

Students begin the prelicensure program at WGU with their pre-nursing coursework. This includes general education courses, as well as introductory medical coursework. This allows students to satisfy required prerequisites for the clinical portion of the program.

Clinical Nursing

After finishing the pre-nursing portion of the program, students that have met progression requirements are eligible to progress into the clinical nursing portion of the program. This portion of the program contains more specific nursing coursework, as well as hands-on clinical experiences that are required for students to earn their Bachelors of Science in Nursing Degree and become eligible to sit for the RN licensure exam after graduation.

COURSES

Nursing Prelicensure Courses

You will work with your WGU Program Mentor and Instructors to prepare for rigorous assessments, virtual-reality simulations, and high-fidelity simulations. Once you've successfully completed those, you will qualify to attend your agency-based clinical rotations. Expect to spend at least 30 hours or more per week on your studies, and in the completion of clinical rotations and simulation labs.

This program has a standard path and is paced to be completed in 8 terms or 4 years. Some students may be able to accelerate their pace with transfer credits.

Transferrable courses for the prelicensure program must have a minimum "C" grade or better to be approved for transfer credit.

The curriculum in WGU’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is designed not only to prepare you to become a nurse, but to provide you with the skills to become an outstanding nurse, ready to contribute to a strong healthcare team and better patient outcomes.

The WGU B.S. Nursing (Prelicensure) curriculum was designed and is regularly updated with input from the experts on our Nursing Program Council, ensuring you learn what you need to know and master the skills you need to excel as a nurse and play your part on a vital team.

Pre-Nursing Courses (4 Terms)

  • Critical Thinking: Reason and Evidence*
  • Composition: Writing with a Strategy
  • Integrated Physical Sciences
  • Introduction to Communication: Connecting with Others
  • Global Arts and Humanities 

*Course not eligible for transfer credit

  • Introduction to Chemistry
  • Anatomy and Physiology I with Lab (within 5 years)
  • Introduction to Psychology
  • World History: Diverse Cultures and Global Connections
  • Applied Healthcare Statistics

  • Anatomy and Physiology II with Lab (within 5 years)
  • Microbiology with Lab: A Fundamental Approach (within 5 years)
  • Introduction to Sociology
  • Health and Wellness Through Nutritional Sciences*

*Course not eligible for transfer credit

  • Applied Algebra
  • Human Growth and Development
  • Pathophysiology (within 5 years)
  • Medical Dosage Calculations and Pharmacology*
  • Foundations of Nursing*

*Course not eligible for transfer credit

Clinical Nursing Courses (4 Terms)

  • Basic Nursing Skills (in-person lab course)
  • Health Assessment
  • Adult Health I*
  • Intrapersonal Leadership and Professional Growth

*Clinical portion in this course

  • Intermediate Nursing Skills (in-person lab course)
  • Adult Health II*
  • Women's and Children's Nursing*
  • Scholarship in Nursing Practice

*Clinical portion in this course

  • Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing*
  • Community Health and Population-Focused Nursing*
  • Information Technology in Nursing Practice
  • Organizational Systems and Healthcare Transformation

*Clinical portion in this course

  • Advanced Nursing Skills (virtual lab course)
  • Adult Health III*
  • Professional Nursing Role Transition*

*Clinical portion in this course

Skills For Your Résumé

As part of this program, you will develop a range of valuable skills that employers are looking for. 

  • Communications: Successfully communicated effectively across diverse cultural contexts, fostering understanding and collaboration among individuals from different backgrounds.
  • Critical Thinking: Evaluated evidence based on specific criteria, ensuring the use of high-quality and reliable information for decision-making and problem-solving.
  • Pathology: Differentiated major types of microorganisms based on their structural and other characteristics, enhancing the ability to identify and address microbial challenges effectively.
  • Physiology: Demonstrated a comprehensive understanding of normal physiological functions of living organisms and their parts, providing a solid foundation for healthcare and biological studies.
  • Problem Solving: Analyzed complex medical problems skillfully, leading to the identification of optimal solutions and improved patient outcomes.
  • Research: Synthesized research information from multiple sources adeptly, enabling comprehensive and well-informed insights.

“My heart is with the Prelicensure BSN students who have chosen the noble profession of nursing as a career. Should you choose WGU to prepare you, know that this is the university of the future: It is affordable, it's flexible, and it offers learning based in competencies rather than just class time.”

—Brenda Cleary, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Adjunct Faculty
University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill

PROGRAM EXPECTATIONS

Pre-Nursing and Clinical Nursing Coursework

Within the Prelicensure program at WGU, there are two sections for students to complete. The first section is pre-nursing, which include general education coursework, and introductory healthcare coursework. These satisfy prerequisites that students need to enter the clinical nursing portion of the program. Students then progress to the clinical nursing portion of the program, which contains specific nursing courses that prepare students for their careers.

Clinical and Lab Experience

You will work one-on-one with a clinical coach/preceptor (under the guidance of a WGU clinical instructor) to complete several “intensives” of clinical rotations. Your clinical coach/preceptor is an experienced staff nurse trained to help you throughout the duration of your rotations. Assessment of your clinical competence will be conducted by your WGU clinical instructors. Students will travel to lab twice during the program. Lab locations are assigned based on the student’s state of residence. Click below to learn more about clinical and lab experiences.

Program Coursework

The B.S. Nursing (Prelicensure) program requires that you work closely with WGU faculty and clinical coaches/preceptors. You will be expected to complete all required CUs assigned each 6-month term. Together with your Course Instructor and Program Mentor, you will decide when you are ready to complete course assessments.

The first person you speak with at WGU will be your Enrollment Counselor, an expert in your program who can explain all the requirements and expectations in more detail. You can also read more about each course in the Program Guide.

ADMISSIONS

Admissions Requirements Unique to This Nursing Degree

Admission Requirements (for more information click on the live links below)

*Click the arrows below for more details about applying, the background check, and admissions.

The Leavitt School of Health at Western Governors University is committed to student success and partners with the WGU Office of Admissions to determine academic eligibility for the Prelicensure Nursing program. Applicants who submit all admission requirements will be reviewed through a weighted evaluation system that considers several factors. The Office of Admissions reviews all applicants based on their academic experience and nursing entrance exam scores.   

  • Admission is competitive and not guaranteed; additional factors important to student success in the nursing program may also be considered.
  • Admission to and enrollment in the Prelicensure Nursing program does not guarantee acceptance into the clinical nursing portion of the program.  
  • Only residents of the following states are eligible to apply to this program. Prospective students seeking admission to the WGU Prelicensure Nursing program may apply to a district within their state of residence. Any applications from residents outside of these states will not be accepted.

Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, or Utah

To be considered for enrollment into the Prelicensure Nursing Program, applicants must possess a high school diploma or its equivalent, be at least 16 years of age (must be 18 at the time of clinical experiences), AND complete the following admission requirements:

  1. Complete the HESI A2 nursing exam within the last five years. You must receive a score of at least 75% in the following sections: Vocabulary, Reading, Math, and Grammar. HESI exams scheduled 9/1/2023 and beyond will also include a Biology section that will be graded but not included in the admissions review. The overall score will also not be considered in the admissions review. WGU will only consider two attempts at passing the HESI A2 exam per 12-month period. The 12-month period begins with the first attempt.
  2. Submit to a criminal background check through American Databank
  3. Submit a Prelicensure Nursing Application Essay 
  4. Activate their Prelicensure Nursing File which includes a declaration of:
  • The date and location an applicant is applying to
  • Completed certifications
  • Completed licenses
  • Military service and training

Requirements that must be satisfied in pre-nursing terms to be eligible to progress to the clinical nursing program

There are costs outside of tuition and fees involved with creating your compliance account early in your pre-nursing terms and purchasing uniforms and supplies by the end of your last pre-nursing term. These costs will vary based on each item along with geographic location/provider.

Students who are successful in the pre-nursing terms will be eligible for progression into the nursing portion of the program. The following must be completed to be considered for progression into the nursing portion of the program: 

  • Proof of health insurance†.
  • Proof of successfully passing of a criminal background check (also may require a state background check to be completed per state regulatory requirements for nursing programs).
  • Proof of successfully passing a urine drug test.
  • Proof of a current immunization record and current negative TB test.
  • Proof of meeting the specific physical requirements in accordance with the core performance standards of the nursing profession.
  • Participation in the Nursing Progression Committee process.

Students in the pre-nursing term will be required to submit evidence of all of the requirements below to be considered for progression into the nursing portion of the program: 

Immunization Requirements

  • Tetanus/Diphtheria and Pertussis vaccination
  • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella vaccinations and Titer
  • Varicella Zoster vaccination and Titer
  • Hepatitis B vaccination and Titer
  • TB testing
  • Seasonal flu vaccination
  • Additional immunizations may be required based on state and clinical requirements.

It is necessary to have the following physical abilities for the Clinical portion of the program: 

Essential Performance Standards/Clinical Nursing

  • walk the equivalent of five miles per day
  • reach above shoulder level
  • hear tape recorded transcription and emergency monitors
  • distinguish colors
  • adapt to shift work
  • grip
  • sit and stand for long periods of time
  • climb stairs
  • lift 50 pounds
  • perform CPR

If you have any questions about these required immunizations and physical requirements, please speak with an Enrollment Counselor.

† Note: Student malpractice insurance will be provided by WGU at no cost to you.

1. Create your COMPLIO account.
2. Select Program: Prelicensure.
3. Select your state of residence.
4. Under "Optional Compliance Items" select:
*Criminal Background Check: $52 (base package price)

Note: Do not select the Prelicensure Bundle or the Immunization Package.

Get Your Questions Answered

Talk to a WGU Enrollment Counselor.

Transfer Credits

Accredited,

Respected,

Recognized™

One important measure of a degree’s value is the reputation of the university where it was earned. When employers, industry leaders, and academic experts hold your alma mater in high esteem, you reap the benefits of that respect. WGU is a pioneer in reinventing higher education for the 21st century, and our quality has been recognized.

The baccalaureate degree program in nursing, master's degree program in nursing, and post-graduate APRN certificate program at WGU are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org).

COST

Unbelievably Low Tuition

By charging per term rather than per credit, WGU helps students control the ultimate cost of their degrees.

Other student responsibilities:

Uniforms: Approx. $150 plus shipping, handling, and applicable taxes. Uniforms do not have to be purchased through WGU.
Lab kit fees: Approx. $250 
Drug screen, background check, and immunization tracking system: $94, which includes one alias search; there will be a separate charge for each additional alias search, and due to expenses associated with accessing court documents, the fees for students in the following states will be as follows: MI ($10), NV ($12). All fees are subject to change.

Compliance fees will vary depending on the compliance items a student needs for placement. Generally (though subject to change), prices are as follows:

  • ADB/Complio Background Check (varies by state – completed every 24 months) - $52 - $150
  • ADB/Complio Immunization Tracking Package (varies by package term) - $25- $50
  • ADB/Complio Drug Screen (varies by panel) - $36
  • ADB/Complio HIPAA Training - $15
  • ADB/Complio OSHA Training - $15
  • Third-Party Onboarding (varies by vendor - MCE, ACEMAPP, TCPS, CPNW, etc.) - $25- $50

Additional fees to the student may include: fingerprints, physician office visits, titer screenings, immunizations, physical exams, eye exams, and any additional items required by the health facility. All prices subject to change.

Costs for Pre-Nursing (1-4 Terms)

$6,430

Tuition per 6-month term

The first 4 terms of the prelicensure program consist of pre-nursing courses, and the tuition is slightly lower than the rest of the program. There is an additional e-books and resources fee of $200 per six-month term.

Costs for Clinical Nursing (4 Terms)

$8,755

Tuition per 6-month term

At WGU, tuition is charged every six months. There is an additional e-books and resources fee of $200 per six-month term.

A Prelicensure Nursing Bachelor's Degree Is Within Reach

There is help available to make paying for school possible for you:

The average student loan debt of WGU graduates in 2022 (among those who borrowed) was less than half* the national average.

Most WGU students qualify for financial aid, and WGU is approved for federal financial aid and U.S. veterans benefits. 

Many scholarship opportunities are available. Find out what you might be eligible for.

*WGU undergraduate students have approximately half the debt at graduation compared to the national average, according to the Institute for College Access and Success (2022).

CLINICAL AND LAB EXPERIENCES

A Hands-On Nursing Preparation Program

Approximately 60% of this program is online coursework, with the remaining 40% as hands-on clinical and lab time.

Students must be available for three-week clinical windows for each clinical course and 5 weeks during your final clinical course. Preparation will be completed online under the guidance of a WGU Program Mentor and through mandatory attendance at high-fidelity clinical simulation learning labs.

  • Cutting-edge clinical simulations, including virtual and high-fidelity simulations to develop clinical skills.
  • Agency-based clinical rotations in hospitals and other key healthcare sites within the community.
  • One-on-one guidance, supervision, and support in a busy, contemporary clinical setting with a clinical coach/preceptor—an experienced staff nurse and clinical expert.
  • You will complete multiple clinical rotations each year, both in-hospital and community-based settings

WGU’s B.S. Prelicensure Nursing students will travel to clinical learning labs twice during the program. Clinical learning labs are approximately one week in length for each of the two sessions. There will also be one virtual lab (which includes two virtual meetings) that will not require travel to a facility.

Clinical assignments are based upon a variety of factors such as state of residence, student program status, and student capacity at the time of clinical progression. Lab assignments are aligned with the location of the clinical district chosen.

Students must complete any additional compliance and onboarding items as indicated by an affiliation agreement with the partnering facility. Items may include, but are not limited to: N95 fit tests, COVID vaccines/boosters, colorblindness/eye exam, fingerprints, and other immunizations as indicated.

"I've always wanted to become a RN. I took the longest route to get here and now I'm 27 and finally accomplished my dream! All thanks to WGU for making a program that I could work and get my school work done.”

—Brittney Burns
B.S. Nursing, Prelicensure

WGU Houston Lab for Prelicensure Students

"I've always wanted to be a nurse. But I have found that traditional school never really worked for me. I found that teaching my self and working online was a better fit and by doing that I ended up getting back to back bachelor degrees. I realized that I enjoy learning just not the way schools were traditionally structured where you are always lectured to.

—Brian Cowan
B.S. Nursing, Prelicensure

WGU Houston Lab for Prelicensure Students

CAREER OUTLOOK

Your Path to Becoming a Nurse

You need your RN license to achieve your goal of being a nurse. Becoming a bachelor’s-prepared nurse as well will open the door to many opportunities—whether you want to serve on decision-making committees at your facility or desire greater employability at hospitals seeking Magnet status. 

Caring for others in their time of need has been your lifelong passion. It’s your heart and soul—it’s why you feel called to be a nurse. WGU’s nursing programs are designed around a philosophy and a conceptual model of nursing that recognizes the nurse’s diverse roles as detective, scientist, and healer.

We’re committed to our mission of forming “confident, caring, and competent professional nurses prepared to meet emerging healthcare needs of diverse populations.”   

Return on Your Investment

On average, WGU graduates see an increase in income post-graduation

Average income increase from all degrees in annual salary vs. pre-enrollment salary. Source: 2023 Harris Poll Survey of 1,655 WGU graduates.

Survey was sent to a representative sample of WGU graduates from all colleges. Respondents received at least one WGU degree since 2017.

6%

Employment of nurses is projected to grow 7% from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations.

—U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

WGU's BSN Grads are Working in Diverse, Fulfilling Roles

Our 20,000-plus Bachelor of Science Nursing alumni have great jobs and satisfying careers:

Job Titles

  • Staff nurse
  • Flight nurse
  • Nurse case manager
  • Public health nurse
  • Forensic nurse

Diverse Industries

  • Hospitals and medical centers
  • Doctor’s offices and clinics
  • U.S. military
  • Public health departments
  • Nonprofit organizations

Major Employers

  • Intermountain Healthcare
  • U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs
  • Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
  • Synergy Home Health
  • HCA Healthcare
  • Peace Health

WGU Grads Hold Positions With Top Employers

Hospitals and clinics around the country know the benefit of a degree from WGU, so your healthcare degree is valuable.

More About Prelicensure Nursing

Common Questions About the Prelicensure Program

The WGU BS Nursing Prelicensure program does not follow set start dates like other programs. We have sporadic start dates throughout the year within each geographic region inside each participating state. The clinical hospital partners that we work with determine when our cohorts will begin and the size of those cohorts. We encourage applicants to diligently work on completing their entire application to ensure they are eligible to be considered for as many cohort start dates as possible in their geographic area. You will only be considered for one start date at a time. Your Enrollment Counselor can provide specific location details.

Like most nursing programs, the B.S. Nursing Prelicensure program at WGU is competitive. WGU reviews a variety of factors when making an admission decision. WGU continues to focus on growth and this means obtaining new clinical hospital partnerships which allows us more space to enroll Nursing Prelicensure students. 

WGU reviews a variety of factors when making a Holistic admissions decision. Healthcare experience will be factored into the Holistic admission decision but experience in the healthcare realm is not a requirement for admission.

At this time, we do not allow individuals to set up their own clinical arrangements. Clinical arrangements require a great deal of legal approval and contracts. WGU is committed to the growth of this program and we encourage you to check back in the future to see if we have expanded to your geographic area. 

Unfortunately, you must be living in one of the following states to be eligible to apply for this program. Any applications from individuals living outside one of the states listed will not be accepted.  

Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee , Texas, Utah

The prelicensure nursing program at WGU is constantly growing, and there will be more states where we are able to offer this program as we continue to grow. Check back often to see if your state has been added to the list of available areas, or talk to an Enrollment Counselor to learn more. 

The BS Nursing Prelicensure program is set up to have the student complete the program in the state where they started the program. Once a WGU student, relocation to another state is not a guarantee due to cohort availability and competitiveness.

The B.S. Nursing Prelicensure program is not a traditional bridge program. Our program is for individuals seeking to earn their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and obtain the clinical hours required to sit for the NCLEX exam to become a registered nurse.

BS Nursing Prelicensure students will be assigned a set schedule outlining their lab and clinical requirements that they will be expected to follow.  Every WGU Nursing Prelicensure student is assigned a clinical coach/preceptor that they will work with one-on-one. Our clinical coaches/preceptors are experienced RN’s and our students will be assigned to work the schedule of their clinical coach/preceptor. This could include weekends, evenings and holidays.

The B.S. Nursing Prelicensure program has an expected pace of 4 years for completion. Students can accelerate some of their coursework, particularly the pre-nursing coursework, and may be able to complete their program faster.

Yes, you are now able to complete all of your prerequisite nursing courses at WGU. You can talk with your Enrollment Counselor about the specific courses in the program and possible transfer credit for previous college courses. 

Completing an accredited nursing program, like our WGU B.S. Nursing Prelicensure offering, is a requirement to qualify to take the NCLEX exam. Upon successful completion of the NCLEX exam you can work toward applying for a license in the state you plan to work. We encourage you to connect with your state Board of Nursing website to verify specific state licensing information. 

WGU is approved to offer federal student aid. You will need to apply using the FAFSA, which is used to determine your eligibility for aid. WGU’s FAFSA school code is 033394.

Scholarships are available for new WGU students and returning graduates. This video shows more about scholarship opportunities and how they can help you pay for school. Get information on:

  • How to apply
  • Eligibility requirements
  • Examples of scholarships
  • What happens after you apply
  • FAQs
  • Other financial aid options

WGU's tuition is a flat rate that is charged every six months. You can take as many courses as you are able in that six-month term—with no extra cost. You simply pay for the term and do as much work as you can or want to during that time. This means that finishing faster helps you save money—a major benefit you won't find at most other schools. 

Ready to Start Your WGU Journey?