The School of Nursing offers programs from the certificate level to graduate degree. Program options include: (1) a BSN degree program; (2) a fast track BSN program designed primarily for post-baccalaureate students; (3) an LPN to BSN program (for LPNs desiring to obtain a baccalaureate degree); (4) an RN to BSN degree program (for registered nurses who desire to obtain a baccalaureate degree in nursing); and (5) an MSN degree program with a family nurse practitioner functional track as its specialty. The RN to BSN program is also offered in a Web-based format.
The BSN program prepares students to function as professional nurses in a variety of hospital and community settings. Students acquire the requisite knowledge and skills to practice across a variety of settings with diverse populations within the health care system and to be independently skillful in the promotion and maintenance of health, the prevention of disease, and the management, coordination and supervision of client care.
Northern’s bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and master of science in nursing (MSN) programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
The department strongly recommends that prospective nursing students prepare themselves in high school by taking the following courses: English (four years), mathematics (three or four years, including two years of algebra), social studies (four years) and one unit each of biology, chemistry and physics. Students without the necessary high school preparation in algebra and chemistry may need to take additional preparatory courses in these subjects, which will lengthen their program.
Prospective transfer students from community colleges should take courses equivalent to those listed as requirements for admission to the nursing sequence.
Entering students are assigned an adviser who helps them plan an academic program of pre-nursing courses. When the prerequisites are nearly completed, students may apply for admission to the baccalaureate nursing sequence in consultation with an adviser. For more information, contact the nursing department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: Completion of prerequisites does not guarantee admission to the nursing program.
Criminal Background Checks
Student placement in a clinical site/agency assumes that the applicant possesses good moral character and the ability to successfully pass the rigors of a background investigation and criminal history check. In specific clinical sites, the State of Michigan requires a criminal background check and a criminal background check is required prior to licensure. All students are required to complete a criminal background check. Students are responsible for the costs of the background check. Students who do not complete a background check are ineligible for placement at some clinical agencies and therefore, may result in the student’s being unable to progress in the nursing program. More information about criminal background checks is provided in the BSN Student Handbook.
License Information for RNs and LPNs Applying to Nursing Programs
Applicants and students holding either an LPN or RN license must report any action involving their license during the admission process as well as during the student’s progression in the nursing program. This includes licenses that are revoked, suspended, or sanctioned in any manner. The applicant or student is required to report all changes in the status of the license to the Director of the School of Nursing and to their faculty advisor. A licensed that is sanctioned in any way is not considered an active license to practice and therefore does not meet the program requirements for RN to BSN or LPN to BSN programs.
For Students Admitted to the Nursing Program Fall 2008 or Before
Before applying for admission to the nursing sequence, applicants must:
For Students Applying to the Nursing Program for Fall 2009 or Later
Before applying for admission to the nursing sequence, applicants must:
Note: Admission to the BSN program is very competitive. Meeting prerequisites and minimum GPA criteria does not ensure admission.
Before applying for admission to the fast track nursing sequence, applicants must:
Note: Admission to the fast track BSN program is very competitive. Meeting prerequisites and minimum GPA criteria does not ensure admission.
All prospective BSN students must complete and submit an application with a current transcript of grades to the School of Nursing by February 1 for the succeeding fall semester, or by October 1 for the succeeding winter semester.
The School of Nursing admits a limited number of students to the baccalaureate nursing sequence each semester. Records and applications of all students are reviewed promptly, and students are notified of acceptance or rejection no later than the beginning of the pre-registration period. If the number of eligible applicants exceeds the number of placements available, the faculty reserves the right to select the applicants who shall be admitted. The remaining eligible applicants may apply for admission the following semester. Ordinarily, students may expect to complete the entire program in approximately three academic years after being admitted to the nursing sequence, assuming that they complete all of their courses satisfactorily and sequentially.
Students with an LPN license who request admission to the BSN program and have graduated from an LPN program within five years of admission into the BSN program and/or have worked as an LPN within five years of admission into the BSN program, are granted, without testing, advanced placement credit for: NU 211 Foundations of Professional Nursing Practice (T) 4 credits and NU 212 Foundations of Professional Nursing Practice (C) 3 credits. LPN applicants who have not practiced as an LPN and have graduated from an LPN program more than five years prior to application for admission will be required to successfully complete challenge exams to receive advanced placement credit.
LPN student applicants who have not practiced as an LPN and have graduated from an LPN program more than five years prior to admission will be required to successfully complete challenge exams for advanced placement credit.
Students must submit a copy of their current Michigan LPN license prior to acceptance into the BSN program.
Preadmission requirements are the same as delineated in “Admission to the Baccalaureate Nursing Sequence.”
Credit for a maximum of 47 semester hours of selected previous nursing courses will be granted to those individuals transferring from an accredited nursing program or community college with which the School of Nursing has an articulation agreement. RNs that enter the BSN program with a deficit in nursing credits can make up the deficit with credits by taking courses offered within the School of Nursing including nursing electives, NU 399 Advanced Nursing Apprenticeship and/or NU 491 Nursing Practicum/Internship. If the scheduling and/or staffing of nursing courses does not allow the student the opportunity to make up the credit deficit from nursing courses, other courses may be substituted with department approval.
Once per academic year, a cohort of students may be admitted to the RN to BSN online program. The requirements for admission and progression are the same as those listed for admission of registered nurses. The admission deadline varies; check for dates by e-mailing email@example.com. The online program provides all nursing courses in a Web-based format. Students complete their clinical experiences in their own communities via a preceptor.
In addition to the requirements noted for admission of RNs, students in the online program should be proficient in basic computer skills such as e-mail, uploading and downloading documents and attaching files.
Retention in the Nursing Sequence
All BSN students are required to register and take selected clinically associated Health Education Systems, Inc. (HESI) assessment tests. These tests are incorporated into each clinical course and are part of the earned grade for the course except for the HESI Exit Examination which is administered separately and is based on a pass/fail grading system. Students may take the HESI Exit Examination twice (the second attempt incurs an additional charge at the student’s expense). An NCLEX RN Review course is included in the HESI testing package. There is a service charge each semester for the assessment package.
Liberal Studies: Complete information on the liberal studies requirements and additional graduation requirements, including the health promotion requirement, is in the “Liberal Studies Program and Graduation Requirements” section of this bulletin.
Courses within each major that can be used to satisfy liberal studies requirements are listed with the Roman numeral (in brackets) that coincides with the liberal studies division the course falls under.