Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science Nursing

RN-BSN Page Menu

RNs, we heard you.

We’ve made getting your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) at Washington State University even more convenient.

The current Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) curriculum replaces on-site, precepted clinical hours with practice experience hours gained by completing a community/population health project and a capstone project. You’ll complete the program mostly online, starting any semester. Only one attendance day per semester is required for interactive learning and meeting with your course instructors.

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

Why earn your BSN?

As you are looking to build upon what you’ve learned in your associate nursing degree, consider that 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 program 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.


Finish in as little as one year

A 30-credit program
that can be completed
in one year.

Funding Opportunities

WSU offers
over 700

Start Your Application

Contact a
Nursing Advisor

Application Deadlines

Fall and Summer Semesters

Priority Application Window: Nov. 15 – Jan. 31

For applications after Jan. 31 contact an RN-BSN advisor.

Spring Semester

Priority Application Window: Jul. 1 – Aug. 20

For applications after Aug. 20 contact an RN-BSN advisor.

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Concurrent Enrollment

Concurrent Enrollment

Are you looking for a way to expedite your path toward your Bachelor of Science Nursing degree?
Read about our Concurrent Enrollment Program and students can attend RN to BSN courses during the summer while in the community college nursing program.

Experience what makes WSU extraordinary!

Admission Requirements


What are the WSU College of Nursing prerequisites and University Common Requirements (UCORE)?

Students must complete the WSU College of Nursing prerequisites and UCORE. Please note, students with a DTA (Direct Transfer Agreement) degree or a bachelor’s degree in another field are not required to complete UCORE classes.

Note: Students planning to begin the program in Fall must complete all requirements by the end of their Spring term. Students planning to begin the program in Spring must complete all requirements by the end of the Fall Term. (i.e. if you are applying for Fall 2023, requirements must be completed by the end of Spring 2023)

How do I know if my other courses will transfer?

Applicants may send an unofficial transcript to a nursing advisor for feedback to determine whether courses will apply towards the UCORE requirements. They may also reference the WSU Transfer Center website, which is a tool that helps transfer students determine unofficial course equivalencies and request course evaluations. Note that official assessment of transfer course work for prerequisite and UCORE needs is completed at the time of application to WSU.

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Nursing Prerequisites

Below is the general list of the College of Nursing prerequisites for the RN-BSN program. For more detailed information of specific course equivalencies, please refer to the lists of common approved transfer institutions’ course work. If there are questions about course work not listed, please contact the Academic Advisor of the campus to which you are applying.

NOTE: If you are graduating with the nursing transfer degree (AN/DTA MRP) it will satisfy all prerequisite/UCORE requirements.

Course SubjectSemester Credits*Quarter Credits*Notes
Human Anatomy & Physiology810 Must include labs.
General Chemistry45 Must include lab.
Human Nutrition 34 Sports nutrition is not acceptable.
Introduction to Sociology34Other social science courses may work as well. Please contact an RN-BSN advisor to review options if you have not taken a sociology course.
Introduction to Psychology 34 
Microbiology45 Must include lab.
Statistics34 Must include inferential and descriptive statistics.

*Minimum number of credits required.

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Did you take nursing prerequisites at another institution?

Check out our RN-BSN Transfer Guide to see course equivalencies.

Application Requirements

  • Have a current, unencumbered Washington state RN license, or be eligible for licensure when program starts.
  • 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 coursework.
  • Complete College of Nursing RN-BSN prerequisite courses and WSU’s University Common Requirements (UCORE) or equivalent course work. Grades of Pass/Satisfactory, and CLEP scores, may not be accepted. Please contact your nursing advisor for further details.
    • Check with your RN-BSN 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

Please note that an offer of admission is provisionally contingent upon acceptance to the University, satisfactory completion of all academic coursework prerequisite to nursing, completion of all general requirements by the end of the semester prior to beginning the program, and completion of all required onboarding and compliance needs prior to their relevant deadlines.

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Program Requirements

Technical Standards

Nursing education requires that the accumulation of scientific knowledge be accompanied by the simultaneous acquisition of skills and professional attitudes and behaviors.

RN-BSN Clinical Passport Requirements

The College of Nursing calls the combination of proof of licensure, immunizations, required trainings (e.g. CPNW Modules), and certifications (e.g., CPR) the “Clinical Passport.”

Required Courses

CourseTitleCreditsCourse Offered
NURS 360Contemporary Nursing3Offered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 400Nursing Research & EBP3Offered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 405Nursing Leadership3Offered Fall – 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 406Nursing Management of the Healthcare Environment3Offered Spring – 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 413Healthcare Informatics3Offered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 440Population Health Theory3Offered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 463Coordination of Care Across Complex Populations3Offered 1st 8 weeks of the semester.
NURS 465Application of Population Health Principles3Offered as 12-week course in the semester.
NURS 495Advanced Practicum3Offered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester.
Electives3Offered 2nd 8 weeks of the semester.

RN-BSN Total Required Credits – 30

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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 intraprofessional 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.

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Paying for the Program

What does it cost to attend the program?
Visit the WSU Student Financial Services website for information on tuition and expenses at the program and campus level.

How much does it cost to apply?
Nursing CAS itself will cost approximately $55. You will also have to order official transcripts from everywhere you have attended.

What support can I get with financial aid?

Please see our Financial Aid page for information on scholarships.

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.

ItemAmount*Expense OccursAdditional Details
(Service & Activities Fee included in tuition with slight campus variation)
VariesBeginning of each semesterSee tuition link for up-to-date details. Note that some campuses may have additional fees as well on top of tuition.
Books$900 over the course of your degreeThroughout programBook costs for the whole program are approximately $900
Course and Program Fees$70 NURS 465 semesterWe recommend to set aside approximately $70 for the semester that NURS 465 is taken. Amounts are dependent on enrollment in NURS 465
NCLEX Fee1-credit cost of current tuition amount.Summer-start: Second semester
Fall-start: First semester
Spring-start: First semester
This charge transfers in 32 credits, allowing students to be juniors and have enough credits after the RN-BSN program to meet WSU graduation requirements.
Equipment$10: Cougar Card & Nursing Badge
Immunization and Onboarding requirements

  • $15: Liability insurance

  • $150 CastleBranch Account

  • $Varies: Immunizations

Required prior to first semesterSome immunizations are also required annually, and pricing will vary depending on individual health plan.
Health Fee (Spokane and Yakima students only)$100Beginning of each semester from the campusCharged to students enrolled for seven or more credit hours in Fall and Spring, and 1 or more in Summer. Tri-Cities & Vancouver students are not charged this campus fee.

Personal budgeting

Computer NeedsIf you do not already have a computer, one option is this agreement between WSU and Dell. WSU Nursing IT recommends a Windows computer to ensure familiarity at clinical sites and general compatibility.
Student OrganizationsOptional association with student organizations may have small fees or charges attached.
*Please note costs listed on this page are estimates for budgeting purposes only. This is not a bill. For additional budgeting information, refer to the Financial Services figures. Washington State University reserves the right to increase or modify tuition and fees without prior notice, upon approval by the State of Washington and Washington State University Board of Regents and to make such modifications applicable to students enrolled at WSU at the time as well as to incoming students. In addition, all tuition and mandatory fees are subject to change at any time for correction of errors.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Coursework & Practice Experiential Learning Hours

How long does it take to complete the program? What would my schedule be?

The program is only 30 credits, and most students finish in one year. This would be 12 credits each term for fall and spring, and 6 credits in summer. We also offer a four-semester plan as well as individualized plans of study.

Please contact an RN-BSN advisor. They can explore those various plan options to help you find a plan of study that works for you.

Where do I complete my experiential learning hours?

NURS 465 and NURS 495 courses include practice experiential learning hours under the supervision of the course instructor. These hours are completed doing a community assessment, older adult assessment, and a problem-based project. Students must complete specific portions of these experiences in the State of Washington. If you must move out of Washington state during the program or accept a travel nurse position, contact your RN-BSN advisor and the RN-BSN program director as soon as possible for a plan to complete these course experience hours.

Technology & Program Materials

What computer skills and technology are required?

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

Where do I get my books?

Order your books from WSU’s Official Campus Bookstore.

  • Spokane & Yakima Students – select ‘Spokane’ Campus
  • Tri-Cities & Walla Walla Students – select ‘Tri-Cities’ Campus
  • Vancouver Students – select ‘Vancouver’ Campus
  • All Students – 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. Your course faculty can help you with that when you are in the community.

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Undergraduate Program Advisors

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CCNE Accredited Logo

The Washington State University College of Nursing BSN, MN and DNP programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K. Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.