Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What do the acronyms LPN, BSN, RN, PN mean?
The acronyms listed all over this Web site are the types of nursing degrees offered:


Degree type

Time for completion


Licensed Practical Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

120 Credit Hours


Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

120 Credit Hours


Bachelor of Science in Nursing

4 years

PN Practical Nursing Certificate 45 Credit Hours


What are the BSN pre-nursing requirements?
CH 109 Chemistry       4
BI 201/207 Human Anatomy           4
BI 202/208 Human Physiology        5
PSY 100 or PSY 101 Psychology      4-3
AH 102 Growth and Development        3
BI 203A Medical Microbiology          3
AH 201/HN 301A & AH 202/HN 301B Nutrition for Health Professionals   2 credits each

**NOTE: The questions below address the traditional BSN admission process. For the Freshman Direct Admission policies and process, see the current BSN Information Packet. 

Must all pre-nursing courses be completed before admission to the nursing sequence?
Yes. The pre-nursing program was designed to meet specific needs in the nursing curriculum. However, students can apply to the program while currently enrolled in prerequisite courses.

Does a bachelor's degree in another field enhance an applicant's chances of being accepted?
Yes. 5 extra points are awarded for a prior degree. See the scoring grid criteria in the current BSN Information Packet.

What is the deadline for application?
February 1 for fall entrance; October 1 for winter entrance.

How many entry points are there per year into the School of Nursing?
Two for the BSN program. Fall and winter semester.

Are letters of recommendation required?
Not at this time.

Does work experience in a health-care facility better an applicant's chances of being selected?
No. It is more important that you get a good college preparation program in high school. Frequently students take nurse aid-type courses in high school at the expense of getting chemistry, algebra and other critical science and math courses. Work experience may help you better decide about your nursing career, however, proper academic preparation in math and science will result in greater success in college.

When will notification of acceptance or rejection be made?
For the BSN program, normally not later than the beginning of the pre-registration period (mid-March for fall admission, late October for winter admission), provided application is complete and current when submitted.

Are applicants selected strictly according to cumulative GPA (grade point average)?
No. The admission criteria scoring grid will be used to determine admission to the BSN Program.

How many spaces are available in each BSN class?
Approximately 40 per semester.

What will happen to the remaining qualified applicants?
Those qualified applicants who were not admitted will be held on a reserve list until the first week of the semester. Applicants from this list will be admitted (in rank order) should any vacancies occur. Following the first week of the semester all lists will be invalidated and those wishing to be considered for future classes must reapply.

Who makes up the Admissions Committee?
Faculty and the department head.

What is a provisional acceptance?
When a student is notified of a provisional acceptance, this means that a space has been reserved for him/her in the School of Nursing for the following class. This becomes a full acceptance upon successfully completing any remaining prerequisites and/or maintaining grade point averages.

Once admitted to the nursing program, how long will it take to complete nursing course requirements?
Approximately two and a half years (5 semesters, fall and winter only).

Can a student accelerate and graduate in less than five semesters?
Not when admitted into the traditional program.

Will I have to attend school during the summer?
The traditional curriculum does not incorporate summer school sessions in the program of study. Many students, however, choose to take some non-nursing courses during the summer so that they have a lighter course load in the regular academic year.

Can a student take nursing courses without being enrolled in the School of Nursing?
A student must be accepted into the nursing program to take nursing courses.

What is the status of freshmen students?
Freshmen and others completing the pre-nursing requirements are classified as "pre-nursing" students and, as such, are assigned an adviser from the School of Nursing after they finish their first year.

How can students get an application for admission to the nursing major?
Applications are available online during the application windows (January 1-February 1 for fall semester and September 1-October 1 for winter semester).

What courses from other institutions will transfer?
All non-nursing courses in which a passing grade was received and that are collegiate level are usually acceptable for transfer credit. Completed nursing courses from another nursing school will be reviewed by nursing faculty. See or contact the Admissions office for further information.

Is there a Student Nurses Association at Northern?
Yes -- contact the School of Nursing for meeting times and places. Freshmen and all new nursing students are encouraged to join.

Are there student loans available to help with my education?
Yes. In fact, there are several loans available specific to nursing students. Check with the Financial Aid office for more specific information.

Are scholarships available for nursing students?
Yes. Scholarship information is available from the Financial Aid office or

Once I've been admitted to the nursing major, must I always maintain a cumulative grade point average?
Yes. While you are in the Nursing Major, you must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.25.

How do I keep up with changes that might occur?
The SNA (Student Nurses Association) is the official communication system between students and faculty. Representatives of the SNA serve as members of various departmental committees. Changes may also be discussed in special meetings or in classrooms, and will be reflected in advising materials and the program handbook, which is available online.

What if I fail a nursing course?
You must immediately discuss your problem with your nursing adviser and reapply for placement into the course. Note: you may repeat a nursing course only once.

What rights and responsibilities do I have as a student?
Two publications, Student Code and Student Rights and Responsibilities, are available from the Dean of Students Office or online. They detail NMU's rules and regulations and also describe the grievance procedures that students may utilize.