Admission, Progression, and Graduation Requirements

Students wishing to apply for admission to the nursing programs must complete a formal application to BOTH Dickinson State University and the Department of Nursing. Admission to Dickinson State University does not automatically ensure admission to the nursing program(s). For further information, contact the Department of Nursing or access the nursing application form(s) on the DSU website.

Admission requirements for the nursing programs are listed on the following pages. Progression and graduation criteria are found in the Department of Nursing Policy Handbook and prospective nursing students can receive a copy upon request. Admission, progression, and graduation criteria are subject to annual revision.

Students planning to re-enter a nursing program must meet the Admission and Progression program requirements that are in effect at the time classes start following official readmission into the nursing program. Readmission to the nursing program cannot be guaranteed.

CATALOG YEARS OF LIMITATIONS

  1. A student who has an academic "break" (has not completed a course at Dickinson State University) of two consecutive years or more, excluding summer sessions, must change to the University catalog which is in effect at the time the student resumed his/her studies.
  2. A student may not complete a degree from an academic catalog that was put into effect more than six calendar years prior to their graduation date.

Criminal Background Check (CBC): All nursing students admitted or readmitted to a nursing program are required to complete an annual CBC via the Department of Nursing. Participation in the CBC is necessary to obtain clearance for students prior to participation in clinical. Please contact the Department of Nursing with any questions.

Drug Screening: All nursing students admitted or readmitted to a nursing program are required to complete Drug Screening via the Department of Nursing. Participation is necessary for obtaining clearance for students partaking in clinical at various healthcare facilities. Please contact the Department of Nursing with any questions.

Health Information and Immunizations: All nursing students admitted or readmitted to a nursing program MUST provide documented proof of all required health information, health insurance coverage and immunizations prior to the start of the semester.

Required Functional Abilities: All nursing students admitted or readmitted to a nursing program are required to complete annual required functional abilities assessments. The nursing profession requires specific physical/motor, sensory, cognitive, behavioral/emotional, and communication functional abilities of its practitioners and these same functional abilities are required of students throughout the nursing education programs.

Please contact the Department of Nursing with any questions. When deemed necessary, students will be required to have a physical and/or mental examination(s) from appropriate health care provider(s) to prove sufficient capacity in each area prior to continuing in the program.

ASSOCIATE IN APPLIED SCIENCE IN PRACTICAL NURSING PROGRAM ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

Students not holding nurse licensure seeking admission to the first year of the AASPN Program must submit:

  1. Official transcripts of high school coursework (partial or complete), GED (if appropriate), and all colleges/universities attended (if appropriate). These official records must show evidence of the following:
    1. Minimum 2.25 cumulative high school or college/university GPA or GED minimum average standard score of 145 or 450.
    2. Minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in high school or college/university algebra (submit evidence of course in process) or GED math standard score of 145 or 410.
    3. Minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in high school or college/university chemistry (submit evidence of course in process) or GED science standard score of 145 or 410.
  2. A completed North Dakota University System application to Dickinson State University (available online).
  3. A completed AASPN Program application to the Department of Nursing (available online or print and send to the Department of Nursing). Application deadline is February 1. Letters of acceptance/denial are sent by the Department of Nursing no sooner than the middle of March. It is the student's responsibility to keep current contact information on file in the Department of Nursing; incorrect information may result in delay or exclusion of admission to the program. 
    • Provisional acceptance to the AASPN Program may be granted to students who are in the process of meeting admission requirements. To begin the nursing education program, all admission requirements must continue to be met.
    • All students who have previously attended any other college/university must request a transcript audit from the Registrar, contact the Department of Nursing Chair and secure appropriate course substitution forms.
    • Students who have previously taken nursing courses at any other college/university must submit copies of nursing course syllabi to the Department of Nursing for consideration of course substitution.
    • Enrollment is limited to 43.
    • Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a space available basis.

Additional Admission Requirements for Permanent Residents and International Applicants

 

An applicant whose native language is not English* is required to demonstrate proficiency in the English

Language. The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is the official DSU English Language

Proficiency exam and results of this test determine a student’s eligibility for AASPN or BSN Program admission consideration.

All permanent residents and international students applying for admission to the nursing program must:

  1. be admitted to Dickinson State University;
  2. complete the TOEFL exam if you have not already done so; and
  3. complete an AASPN or BSN Program application.

Minimum TOEFL scores are required for all students in the respective content areas of Listening (> 22), Reading (> 22), Speaking (> 26) and Writing (> 24).


    *As per Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Fact Book at www.cia.gov.

Vocational LPNs seeking admission to the second year of the AASPN Program must meet the admission and selection criteria for the AASPN Program as noted. They must also have:

  1. Graduated from a state-approved PN program.
  2. A minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in required first year courses of BIOL 111A - Concepts of Biology, CHEM 115, CHEM 115L – Introductory Chemistry and Lab, BIOL 220 - Anatomy and Physiology I, PSYC 111 – Introduction to Psychology, PSYC 250 – Developmental Psychology, or equivalent courses.

    Vocational LPN graduates may be admitted to the AASPN Program without meeting all prerequisites as stated above provided the individual graduated from an approved nursing education program. However, they must provide evidence of satisfactory attainment of all required courses in the major prior to graduation from the AASPN Program.

  3. Received academic credit for nursing courses from a regionally accredited institution. (Nursing credits transferred or awarded will be recorded on the DSU transcript but will not apply toward degree completion until the student has successfully completed nursing courses [NURS prefix] equivalent to approximately one semester of full-time nursing coursework).

    OR

    Successfully completed NLN’s PN FUNDAMENTALS Exam to receive academic credit for NURS 121/NURS 198A - Basic Nursing Concepts I/Clinical I, NURS 131/NURS 198B – Basic Nursing Concepts II/Clinical II, and NURS 240 – Fundamentals of Nutrition, if necessary.

  4. Submitted verifiable evidence of unencumbered nurse licensure (or evidence of pending license). This includes state where licensed and licensure type for verification on NURSYS.
  • Provisional acceptance to the second year of the AASPN program may be granted to students who are in the process of meeting admission criterion #4. For full acceptance, the student must provide verifiable evidence of unencumbered licensure. To begin the second year, all admission requirements must continue to be met.
  • Graduates of vocational PN programs who fail the NCLEX-PN exam may continue to apply for admission to the second year of the AASPN program pending space availability. Upon graduating with the AASPN degree, the graduate is again eligible to take the NCLEX-PN exam.

ASPN/AASPN LPNs, ASN-RNs, or ADN-RNs seeking an ALTERNATE ADMISSION OPTION to the BSN Program (Nurses with > 2.33 and < 2.50 cumulative nursing GPA) must have:

  1. Verifiable evidence of unencumbered nurse licensure. This includes state where licensed and licensure type for verification on NURSYS.
  2. A minimum six month interval between licensure as a nurse and completion of the NLN NACE I PN-RN Exams (Foundations of Nursing, Childbearing and Care of the Child). Prospective students must work as a licensed nurse prior to completing the exams. 
  3. Successfully passed the NLN NACE I PN-RN Exams (Foundations of Nursing, Childbearing and Care of the Child). A minimum score of 70% (total decision score) is required on the Foundations of Nursing exam and a minimum combined average score of 62% on the Childbearing and Care of the Child exams.
    • The exams must be completed by August 1.
    • Costs associated with the exams are incurred by the prospective student and must be paid prior to the exams being ordered and proctored.
    • The exam(s) may be repeated only once.
  4. Submitted official transcripts of previous vocational/college/university education to the Department of Nursing. These official records must show evidence of the following:
    1. Minimum 2.50 cumulative college/university GPA.
    2. Minimum 2.33 cumulative nursing GPA.
    3. Minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in all prerequisite courses (or equivalent) of BIOL 111A - Concepts of Biology, CHEM 115, CHEM 115L – Introductory Chemistry and Lab, BIOL 220 - Anatomy and Physiology I, PSYC 111 – Introduction to Psychology, BIOL 221 – Anatomy and Physiology II, PSYC 250 – Developmental Psychology, ENGL 110 – College Composition I, ENGL 120 – College Composition II, SOC 110 – Introduction to Sociology or SOC 115 – Social Problems, BIOL 302, BIOL 302L – Survey of Microbiology and Lab.

    ASPN/AASPN-LPN, ASN- RN, ADN-RN and diploma RN graduates may be admitted to the BSN Completion Program without meeting all prerequisites as stated above provided the individual graduated from an approved nursing education program. However, they must provide evidence of satisfactory attainment of all courses in the major prior to graduation from the BSN Completion Program.

  5. Submitted a completed North Dakota University System application to Dickinson State University (available online).
  6. Submitted a completed BSN Program application to the Department of Nursing (available online or print and send it to the Department of Nursing). Application deadline is February 1. Letters of acceptance/denial are sent by the Department of Nursing no sooner than the middle of March. It is the student's responsibility to keep current contact information on file in the Department of Nursing; incorrect information may result in delay or exclusion of admission to the program.To begin the nursing education program all admission requirements must continue to be met.
    • All students who have previously attended any other college/university must request a transcript audit from the Registrar, contact the Department of Nursing Chair and secure appropriate course substitution forms.
    • Students who have previously taken nursing courses at any other college/university must submit copies of nursing course syllabi to the Department of Nursing for consideration of course substitution.
    • Provisional acceptance to the BSN Program may be granted to students who are in the process of meeting admission requirements. To begin the nursing education program, all admission requirements must continue to be met.
    • Enrollment is limited to 32.
    • Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a space available basis.

BACHELOR OF SCIENCE IN NURSING COMPLETION PROGRAM ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS ASPN-LPNs, AASPN-LPNs, ASN-RNs, or ADN-RNs seeking admission to the BSN Program must submit:

  1. Verifiable evidence of unencumbered nurse licensure (or evidence of pending license). This includes state where licensed and licensure type for verification on NURSYS.
  2. Official transcripts of previous vocational/college/university education to the Department of Nursing. These official records must show evidence of the following:
    1. Minimum 2.50 cumulative college/university GPA.
    2. Minimum 2.50 cumulative nursing GPA.
    3. Minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in all prerequisite courses (or equivalent) of BIOL 111A - Concepts of Biology, CHEM 115, CHEM 115L – Introductory Chemistry and Lab, BIOL 220 - Anatomy and Physiology I, PSYC 111 – Introduction to Psychology, BIOL 221 – Anatomy and Physiology II, PSYC 250 – Developmental Psychology, ENGL 110 – College Composition I, ENGL 120 – College Composition II, SOC 110 – Introduction to Sociology or SOC 115 – Social Problems, BIOL 302, BIOL 302L – Survey of Microbiology and Lab.

    ASPN/AASPN-LPN, ASN- RN, ADN-RN and diploma RN graduates may be admitted to the BSN Completion Program without meeting all prerequisites as stated above provided the individual graduated from an approved nursing education program. However, they must provide evidence of satisfactory attainment of all courses in the major prior to graduation from the BSN Completion Program.

  3. A completed North Dakota University System application to Dickinson State University (available online).
  4. A completed BSN Program application to the Department of Nursing (available online or print and send it to the Department of Nursing). Application deadline is February 1. Letters of acceptance/denial are sent by the Department of Nursing no sooner than the middle of March. It is the student's responsibility to keep current contact information on file in the Department of Nursing; incorrect information may result in delay or exclusion of admission to the program.
    • Provisional acceptance to the BSN Program may be granted to students who are in the process of meeting admission requirements. To begin the nursing education program all admission requirements must continue to be met.
    • All students who have previously attended any other college/university must request a transcript audit from the Registrar, contact the Department of Nursing Chair and secure appropriate course substitution forms.
    • Students who have previously taken nursing courses at any other college/university must submit copies of nursing course syllabi to the Department of Nursing for consideration of course substitution.
    • Enrollment is limited to 32.
    • Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a space available basis.

ONLINE ADRN TO BSN COMPLETION PROGRAM ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS Associate Degree Registered Nurses seeking admission to BSN Program must submit:

  1. Verifiable evidence of unencumbered RN license (or evidence of pending licensure). This includes states where licensed and licensure type for verification on NURSYS.
  2. Official transcripts of previous vocational/college/ university education to the Department of Nursing. These official records must show evidence of the following:
    1. a minimum 2.50 cumulative college/university GPA.
    2. a minimum 2.50 cumulative nursing GPA.
    3. a minimum grade of “C” (2.00) in all prerequisite courses which includes all ADRN courses (or equivalent) of BIOL 111A - Concepts of Biology, BIOL 220 - Anatomy and Physiology I, PSYC 111 – Introduction to Psychology, BIOL 221 – Anatomy and Physiology II, PSYC 250 – Developmental Psychology, ENGL 110 – College Composition I, ENGL 120 – College Composition II, SOC 110 – Introduction to Sociology or SOC 115 – Social Problems, BIOL 302, BIOL 302L – Survey of Microbiology and Lab.

    ADRN, ADN-RN and diploma RN graduates may be admitted to the Online ADRN - BSN Completion Program without meeting all prerequisites as stated above provided the individual graduated from an approved nursing education program. However, they must provide evidence of satisfactory attainment of all requisite courses in the major prior to graduation from the Online ADRN to BSN Completion Program.

  3. A completed North Dakota University System application to Dickinson State University (available online).
  4. A completed Online ADRN to BSN Completion Program application to the Department of Nursing (available online or the application can be printed and send it to the Department of Nursing). Application deadline is February 1. Letters of acceptance/denial are sent by the Department of Nursing no sooner than the middle of March. It is the student's responsibility to keep current contact information on file in the Department of Nursing; incorrect information may result in delay or exclusion of admission to the program.
    • Provisional acceptance to the Online ADRN to BSN Completion Program may be granted to students who are in the process of meeting admission requirements. To begin the nursing education program, all admission requirements must continue to be met.
    • All students who have previously attended any other college/university must request a transcript audit from the Registrar, contact the Department of Nursing Chair and secure appropriate course substitution forms.
    • Students who have previously taken nursing courses at any other college/university must submit copies of nursing course syllabi to the Department of Nursing for consideration of course substitution forms.
    • Enrollment is limited to 10.
    • Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a space available basis.