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Washington State University


Washington State University College of Nursing

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RNs, we heard you. We’ve made getting your BSN at Washington State University even more convenient.

The new RN-BSN curriculum replaces on-site, precepted clinical hours with practice experience hours gained by completing a community/population health project and an independent study project.

It gives the working nurse more flexibility and the chance to delve deeply into a topic of interest.

You’ll complete the program mostly online, starting any semester.

Why earn your BSN?

More than three-fourths of employers have a strong preference for hiring BSN-prepared nurses. Almost half of health care facilities in the United States require new hires to have a BSN. Having a bachelor’s degree can open more doors to leadership and management positions.


The WSU College of Nursing offers a degree-completion course for RNs geared for the working professional. Whether you’re returning to school or are part of a direct-transfer community college program, courses are offered in a flexible, mostly online format. With 30 years of leadership in RN-BSN education, the WSU College of Nursing is recognized throughout the Pacific Northwest as a high-quality institution that produces exceptional graduates.

Application Deadlines:

Summer & Fall: January 15
Spring: August 20

Female nursing student

“I chose the WSU program for the flexibility. I’m working full-time so being able to do it part-time at my convenience was what attracted me. I loved the program so much I’m applying to WSU’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program.”
–Makena Ackerman, RN-BSN ‘20

To apply, you’ll need to meet the following requirements:

  • Have a current, unencumbered Washington state RN license or be eligible for licensure
  • Be at junior standing (60 semester hours/90 quarter hours), have a direct transferable associate degree, or have a bachelor’s degree
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in all college course work
  • Completed College of Nursing prerequisite courses and WSU’s University Common Requirements (UCORE) or equivalent course work; check with your academic advisor or compare your completed courses at the Transfer Credit Equivalencies website
    • If you are graduating with the nursing transfer degree (AN/DTA MRP) it will satisfy all prerequisite/UCORE requirements
  • Minimum grade for each prerequisite course of 2.0 (Pass/satisfactory grades and CLEP scores are not accepted)

RN-BSN Program Course Work

Course NumberCourse Name Course Offered
NURS 360Contemporary NursingOffered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 400Nursing Research & EBPOffered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester
NURS 405Nursing LeadershipOffered Fall - 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 406Nursing Management of the Healthcare EnvironmentOffered Spring - 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 413 Healthcare InformaticsOffered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester
NURS 440Population Health TheoryOffered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 463Coordination of Care Across Complex PopulationsOffered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 465Application of Population Health PrinciplesOffered as 12 week course starts beginning of semester fall/spring
NURS 495Advanced PracticumOffered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester
ElectiveOffered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester
Female nursing student

“It was always my plan to go to Clark College then get my RN-BSN at WSU. I’ve always been drawn to improving myself and this program focuses on building you as a leader and a manager. I found myself at work thinking, ‘This is what they’re talking about.’”
–Osmara Sarahi Robles, Vancouver

Frequently Asked Questions about the RN-BSN Program

What is the admission criteria for the RN-BSN program?
Refer to the Admission Requirements section to learn about admission criteria.

What is the Border Bill as it relates to WSU?
The State of Washington’s Border Bill is a program that allows Oregon residents who live in specified counties to attend WSU Vancouver and/or WSU Tri-Cities part-time (8 credits or less per semester) and pay resident tuition rates for the courses taken through these 2 WSU campuses ONLY. Contact an RN-BSN advisor for details.

What are the College of Nursing prerequisites?
Visit our WSU UCORE and Nursing Prerequisite Courses page for the list of requirements.

What computer skills and technology are required?

  • Microsoft Office – Word and PowerPoint
  • Internet and email
  • Blackboard software (WSU will provide instruction)
  • High-speed internet

How often are students admitted?
WSU College of Nursing admits students for the fall (beginning in August), spring (beginning in January), and summer (beginning in May) terms.

How do I apply?
Applications must be obtained from an RN-BSN advisor at your anticipated site of application and registration.

When is the application deadline?
We admit students twice per year for summer, fall, and spring terms. Contact an RN-BSN advisor at the campus location you plan to apply to for additional information and for assistance with the application process or visit our steps to apply page.

RN-BSN Deadlines:
Summer & fall: January 15
Spring: August 20

What is the University Writing Portfolio?
The University Writing Portfolio is a mid-career diagnostic to determine if students’ writing abilities have advanced in ways that can handle the writing demands of upper-division courses and courses in their majors. Specific submission guidelines and forms are online and available for download as pdfs. They include step-by-step instructions on how to complete the writing portfolio. Visit the University Writing Portfolio page for more information.

Do all WSU students have to complete the writing portfolio?
No. Students with a previous bachelor’s degree are excused from the writing portfolio.

Will I need to obtain a College of Nursing photo ID?
Every student is required to have a Photo ID Badge to wear when in the community setting.

  • Spokane Students: send an electronic photo (headshot only) to Your student account will be charged $10.00 and your badge will be mailed to you at your current address.
  • Tri-Cities & Walla Walla Students: you will have your photo taken on the first day of orientation and your ID badges will be ordered for you. Once they are available, you will be notified.
  • Yakima Students: you will have your photo taken during orientation and your ID badges will be ordered for you. Once they are available, you will be notified.
  • Vancouver Students:  (follow these steps AFTER you have registered for classes).
    1. Send an electronic photo of yourself to our Student Accounts Office (cashier) at Include your full name, student ID, program (RN to BSN), and your nursing credential (RN), and let them know that you are also mailing payment in.
    2. Mail a check for $10 to WSU Vancouver, Attn: Cashier, 14202 NE Salmon Creek Ave, Vancouver WA 98686. Be sure to include a note with your full name, student ID, program (RN to BSN), and your nursing credential (RN), so the cashier can match it to your photo.

Where do I get my books?
Order your books from WSU’s Official Campus Bookstore.

  • Select Spokane campus for Spokane and Yakima courses.
  • Select Tri-Cities campus for Tri-Cities and Walla Walla courses.
  • Select Vancouver campus for Vancouver courses.
  • Select WSU online for non-nursing electives available online.

Will I need to wear a uniform for my clinical courses?
No. School uniforms are not required. You will need to wear appropriate attire when out in the community and interviewing for your course projects. Consult your course faculty.


RN-BSN Program Outcomes

  1. Formulate nursing practice decisions using the foundation of a liberal education and evolving knowledge from nursing science, the biological and behavioral sciences, and the humanities.
  2. Apply leadership concepts, skills, and decision-making in the provision of high-quality nursing care, healthcare team coordination, and the oversight and accountability for safe care delivery in a variety of settings.
  3. Integrate reliable evidence from multiple credible sources of knowledge including basic and health sciences to inform practice and make clinical judgments.
  4. Demonstrate skills in using patient care technologies, information systems, and communication devices that support safety and quality nursing practice.
  5. Demonstrate basic understanding of the role of nurses in advocating for patients, communities and populations in discussions related to healthcare policy, finance, and regulations.
  6. Use inter-and intra-professional communication and collaborative skills to advocate for safe, evidence-based, high quality patient-centered care.
  7. Demonstrate basic understanding of the role of health promotion, and disease/injury prevention in improving population health across the lifespan.
  8. Demonstrate the values central to nursing practice including altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, advocacy, social justice and life-long learning.
  9. Provide safe, competent, compassionate, ethical, culturally sensitive, and evidence based nursing care to individuals, families, groups, communities and populations through promotion, maintenance and restoration of health; prevention of illness, and physical, emotional, and spiritual support throughout the life span including end of life, and across the continuum of health care environments.

(Updated 5/2019)