Pre-Licensure Program, Bachelor of Science

120 credits


Admission to the Pre-Licensure Program
Admission to the Nursing program is competitive and is not guaranteed. Students must be admitted to the University and to the Nursing program.
Admission decisions are based upon the following criteria:

  • Overall academic achievement
  • Particular emphasis is given to achievement in laboratory science courses
  • Quality of written essay
  • Experience in the field including volunteer work in health care is recommended
  • Personal character and professional references, e.g., supervisor letter(s)

    Students incur the costs associated with clinical requirements. The following must be submitted to the Nursing Department by September 15 of the semester prior to starting NR 3010:

  • Proof of CPR Certification
    Before beginning clinical in a health care agency, every student is required to have current Basic Life Support for the Healthcare Provider (American Heart Association) or Professional Rescuer CPR (Red Cross) certification. The certification must be current for the entire time that the student is registered and attending clinical courses.
  • Proof of Physical Exam within one calendar year.
  • Proof of Health Insurance
    Personal health insurance is required for all nursing students.
  • Proof of Immunizations and Vaccines*
    Students are required to submit proof of the following:

  • TB/PPD (two step) within a year prior to the student's participation in the clinical experience or, for those students with a history of a positive TB test, a recent chest x-ray;
  • German Measles: Rubella: proof of two documented MMR vaccinations (only one MMR if born before 1957) or immune status documented by titer;
  • Measles: Rubeola: Proof of two documented MMR vaccinations (only one MMR if born before 1957) or immune status documented by titer;
  • Mumps: Proof of two documented MMR vaccinations (only one MRR if born before 1957) or immune status documented by titer;
  • Chicken Pox: Proof of two documented Varicella vaccinations or immune status documented by titer or documentation by PCP of having chicken pox;
  • Hepatitis B: Proof of three documented Hepatitis B vaccines or immune status documented by titer. Students who do not take the Hepatitis B vaccine are required to sign a waiver.
  • Twinrix vaccination may be substituted for documentation of Hepatitis A & B immunization status.
  • Diphtheria/Pertussis/Tetanus (DPT): please provide documentation of most recent Diphtheria/Pertussis/Tetanus Booster or Tdap Vaccination. If you have received a tetanus immunization within the last two years, you will not need to receive this immunization. If your tetanus booster is over two years old, you must receive this booster.
  • Influenza Vaccine: Proof of Seasonal Influenza Vaccination or Refusal Form Signed (If vaccination is refused, you will be required to wear a mask while providing direct patient care throughout the flu season which generally runs October to March.)
  • A yearly TB test is required and is available at the PSU Health Services. Students are required to have follow-up care if the TB test results are positive. Students are also required to have a Varicella titer, Rubella (German measles) titer, and Rubeola (Red measles) titer at the beginning of the program. Once titers are documented, they do not have to be repeated.
  • Six-panel medical/professional drug screen.

    *Hepatitis B services, TM/PPD, Tetanus, and flu vaccine can be obtained by PSU Health Services Center on Merrill Street. Please call for an appointment (603) 535-2350.

    Background Review

    1. Purpose: The nursing program is committed to providing the public with nurses and nursing students who demonstrate personal and professional behaviors consistent with the standards of the nursing profession. The purpose of nursing licensure is to safeguard life, health, and the public welfare of the people of this state. In order to protect the people of the State of New Hampshire from the unauthorized, unqualified, and improper application of services of individuals in the practice of nursing, a criminal background check on all nursing students and any nurse not licensed by the State of New Hampshire is required. The student is responsible for the payment required for the review.
    2. Scope: This policy applies to all pre-licensure undergraduate students.
    3. Policy: Satisfactory (no results) results of a background review are required to progress in the nursing program.

    Refusal to provide consent for investigation will result in exclusion from nursing courses and termination from the nursing major. Background review information released to the nursing program will be used only for purposes of assisting in making decisions about continued matriculation in the nursing major. Certain convictions may be considered a disqualifying factor for continuing in the nursing major.

  • If a background review includes information that the student claims is untrue or inaccurate, these concerns or issues must be addressed by the student to the Bureau of Criminal Identification for resolution.
  • Students have an obligation to report any criminal conviction to the Director of Nursing within five days of its occurrence. Failure to notify the Director may result in dismissal from the program.
  • The Director of Nursing will review the results of all background reviews. If adverse information deemed to be relevant to the applicant's suitability for nursing student status is obtained, the Director of Nursing will notify the student in writing.
  • The student will have 14 days to respond to the information either in writing or, if appropriate, by meeting with the Director of Nursing.
  • If a student is disciplined through the PSU Judicial System, the student must notify the department chair within five days.
  • Background reviews are non-transferrable.
  • Convictions: The existence of a conviction does not automatically terminate an individual from the nursing major. Relevant considerations may include, but are not limited to: the date, nature, and number of convictions; the relationship the conviction bears to the duties and responsibilities of nursing; and successful efforts toward rehabilitation. Students who do not disclose criminal convictions on the Plymouth State University Common Application and have a positive background review may not progress in the nursing program. Failure to disclose is done at the student's own risk.
  • Individuals who have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor crime or have a pending criminal case must meet eligibility requirements for affiliating clinical facilities. This can be a lengthy process, so students need to begin this process early. Students must also meet the New Hampshire Board of Nursing requirements for licensure eligibility (see NH Board of Nursing web site). Progression and mandatory clinical placements in the nursing program may be contingent on a satisfactory (no result) background review. Clinical agencies may independently perform background reviews on students awaiting placement and do not have to accept a student with an unsatisfactory background review. In addition, clinical agencies may refuse students with certain convictions on their record. The nursing program will not secure alternate clinical placements for students who cannot be placed in an agency related to an unsatisfactory background review.

    Progression to the Clinical Portion of the Pre-Licensure Program (Winterim of junior year)
    The clinical portion of the Pre-Licensure program begins with a two-credit Winterim course in the junior year of study. Beginning in the spring semester of the junior year, the nursing major is full-time (16 credits for four terms) including summer (e.g., spring, summer, fall, and spring). Clinical courses are taught in the community utilizing hospitals, health departments, home health agencies, private physician offices, school, nursing homes, and other agencies. Students are eligible to sit for the RN licensure exam following the completion of the program.

  • Students must be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation for healthcare providers prior to beginning the nursing courses and be recertified as necessary until after graduation.
  • Students are responsible for their own uniforms.
  • Students will be required to complete a criminal background check and selected immunizations. Information on this process will be given to students in the Summer semester preceding the junior year.
  • Students are required to have health insurance starting with their clinical course, NR 3052.
  • Travel outside of the Plymouth area may be required to complete the clinical portion of the program; students are required to have their own transportation to and from the clinical site.

    In order to continue in the program, students must:

  • Earn a minimum grade of C in all prerequisite courses and maintain a 2.50 grade point average in all nursing prerequisite courses.
  • Earn a grade of B- (minimum numeric score of 80) or higher in all Nursing courses.

    Completion Requirements

  • The nursing courses are completed in sequence in a cohort model. A maximum of 90 transfer credits may be applied to the degree.
  • Credits in the major: 83-84 semester hours, which includes 56 credits of nursing (NR) courses.
  • 120 credit hours are required to complete the BS in Nursing, with a minimum grade point average in the major of 2.50 and a grade of B- (minimum numeric score of 80) or higher in all Nursing courses.
  • Once students begin their nursing courses at PSU [courses with the designation of NR preceding the course number], they have five years to complete their degree. This includes the degree requirements/completion of the degree.

  • Degree Requirements


    BI 2110 Human Anatomy and Physiology I 3
    BI 2120 Human Anatomy and Physiology II 3
    BI 2130 Human Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory I 1
    BI 2140 Human Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory II 1
    BI 2340 Microbiology for Nurses 4
    BI 2360 Genetics for Nurses 3
    Group A - complete one of the following: 3-4
    BI 3020 Biochemistry I
    CH 3020 Biochemistry I
    HE 3220 Applied Nutrition for Healthy Living (TECO)
    MA 2300 Statistics I (QRCO) 3
    PS 2010 Introduction to General Psychology 3
    PS 2050 Life-Span Developmental Psychology 3
    NR 3010 Introduction to Professional Nursing 2
    NR 3020 Introduction to Patient-Centered Care (DICO) 3
    NR 3030 Pharmacology and Pathophysiology 3
    NR 3040 Professional Issues 3
    NR 3052 Clinical Applications of Patient-Centered Care 4
    NR 3070 Health and Wellness of Older Adults (WECO) 3
    NR 3090 Clinical Evidence-Based Practice 4
    NR 3092 Evidence-Based Practice in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing 3
    NR 3094 Evidence-Based Practice in Medical Surgical Nursing 3
    NR 4010 Teamwork and Collaborative Care 3
    NR 4020 Global Health and Population-Based Health Care (GACO) 3
    NR 4030 Specialty Nursing Practice 3
    NR 4035 Quality and Informatics in Health Care Systems (TECO) 3
    NR 4040 Clinical Applications in Specialty Settings 4
    NR 4050 Nursing Leadership 3
    NR 4060 Research Process and Evidence-Based Practice (QRCO) (WRCO) 3
    NR 4082 Leadership and Quality Improvement in Clinical Settings 6
    General Education
    EN 1200 Composition 3
    IS 1111 The First Year Seminar: Critical Thinking and the Nature of Inquiry 3
    CTDI Creative Thought Directions 6
    PPDI Past and Present Directions 6
    SSDI Self and Society Directions 6
    Electives 13-12

    Students must earn a minimum grade of C in all prerequisite courses and maintain a 2.50 grade point average in all nursing prerequisite courses. A grade of B- (minimum numeric score of 80) or higher is required in all Nursing courses to progress in the program.

    *All course information is from the 2013-2014 Catalog.