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Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

BSN Fast Facts

  • The NCLEX pass rate has been above 95 percent for the last seven graduating BSN classes at the University of Nevada, Reno.
  • The Orvis School of Nursing offers 64 students admission to the nursing major each spring and each fall.
  • The Fall 2016 BSN application period is now closed.
  • To apply to the Orvis School of Nursing you must be a student at the University of Nevada, Reno. Here's how to apply to the University.
  • Applicants to the nursing major must have a 3.0 or better GPA on selected prenursing coursework. The Orvis School of Nursing GPA worksheet can help calculate this.

This Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (BSN) is designed for high school graduates, as well as graduates of associate degree and diploma nursing programs. After completing the program and passing the RN-NCLEX -- the exam required to obtain a nurse's license -- graduates will be eligible for entry-level nursing positions in public health agencies, schools, hospitals and other health care agencies. These graduates may also earn commissioned status in the military services or admission to a graduate program.

The BSN program requires four semesters of coursework and admissions occur in both the spring and fall semesters. The program is approved by the Nevada State Board of Nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Applying to the BSN Program

Applicants to the nursing major must be officially admitted to the University of Nevada, Reno as a prenursing major for the current semester. Students who are not currently enrolled at the University will need to reapply. Here is more information on applying to the University of Nevada, Reno.

Students should ensure all program prerequisites are met before submitting an application. Please review the 2016-2017 BSN Prerequisite Summary carefully. (Looking for last year's version? Here is the 2015-2016 BSN Prerequisite Summary.)

Applications to the University and transcript evaluations cannot be rushed to meet the nursing application deadline. Please plan ahead.

Here are some key details on the selection process:

  • Meeting the minimum qualifications for application does not guarantee admission to the nursing major.
  • Applications to the nursing major will be initially reviewed based on academic performance, ranked highest to lowest.
  • Prerequisite courses to the nursing program must have been completed with a C grade or better for the applicant to be considered, but students may be eligible to retake courses to fulfill this requirement -- see the Class Repeat Policy for details.
  • Preference may be given to students who have graduated from a Nevada high school.

The admitting criteria is subject to change. It is the applicant's responsibility to review the criteria on a regular basis.

Fall 2016 Admission: Dates and Requirements

(Note: The fall 2016 application period is now closed.)

All fall 2016 applicants must meet the following requirements:

  1. New or transfer students must apply to the University of Nevada, Reno as a pre-nursing major the semester prior to the semester they will apply for the nursing major admission. This is to ensure that students have met the prerequisites for the program. See the University's admissions deadlines if you have not yet enrolled. Previous University of Nevada, Reno students who are not currently enrolled at the University will need to purchase a new application for admission.
  2. Applicants must have their NSHE ID (10-digit student number) for the nursing major application. An NSHE ID is issued to all University of Nevada, Reno students upon enrollment. You can retrieve your NSHE ID here if you have forgotten it.
  3. Applicants must have no more than 13 prerequisite credits outstanding or in progress (including general capstone). Of the 13 credits in progress, no more than four credits may be science credits (includes CHEM and BIOL lecture and lab courses but not NUTR 223).
  4. The applicant must have a 3.0 or better GPA on selected pre-nursing coursework. Applicants can use the Orvis School of Nursing GPA worksheet to calculate this. Here is a sample completed worksheet.
  5. All the applicant's official transcripts must be submitted to Admissions & Records. This includes all in-progress coursework and previously earned final grades. At the time of submitting the nursing major application, applicants must have submitted all transfer credits that appear on the student's unofficial transcript report in MyNEVADA. If you have taken or are taking courses from another school(s), you must have official transcripts sent to the University Admissions & Records office. Once the course is completed, you will need to submit an updated official transcript with the finalized grade. Orvis School of Nursing must be able to verify that all prerequisite courses are completed by May 31, 2016.
  6. Applicants must have access to their University of Nevada, Reno student email account.  This email account ends in All program correspondence will be sent to this account, including critical admissions information. Here's how to access your student email account.
  7. Applicants must submit all of the following documents:
    • Completed application. Applicants must print and sign their application and have it signed by the appropriate academic adviser as detailed in item 8 below.
    • Orvis School of Nursing GPA worksheet. Applicants must complete, print and sign the Orvis GPA worksheet. They should then save the file to a jump drive and bring it to their advising appointment. Advisers may need to edit the form. Only the first two enrollment attempts for a given course can be listed on the GPA calculator -- see the Class Repeat Policy section for more details.
    • Copies of the required documents that show proof of Nevada high school graduation or veteran's status (if applicable).
    • Copies of unofficial transcript report and transfer credit report. Please highlight the program prerequisites for adviser review.
    • Copy of current class schedule or a note on preferred application interview dates/times. See item 10 below for the next interview session times.
  8. All applications must be signed by the appropriate academic adviser. Continuing UNR students or transfer students should contact the Division of Health Science Advisors. Applicants who have already earned a four-year degree should contact Orvis School of Nursing Adviser Julie Woodard.
  9. Applicants who speak a native language other than English must take the TSE or SPEAK test. A score more or equal to 55 must be obtained for admission to the major. Scores must be submitted with your application. Please contact the UNR Intensive English Language Center at 775-784-6075 to schedule your SPEAK test.
  10. Applicants must save the date for the applicant interview sessions, which are scheduled for March 10 and 11, 2016. Selected applicants will be contacted for an in-person interview. Interview attendance is mandatory for admission and interviews cannot be rescheduled or postponed. See the Admissions Interviews section for more details.
  11. If the applicant receives a provisional admission offer, he or she must respond to the email to accept the official admission offer to the nursing major. All offers will be sent to the applicant's University of Nevada, Reno student email account.
  12.  Admitted applicants must save the date for the mandatory Provisional Admission Orientation on March 18, 2016 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and the mandatory New Student Orientation on May 4, 2016 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Please note that all dates are subject to change.

The final selection process to the nursing major will rely on a rank-order list of qualified applicants based on the pre-nursing major GPA, Orvis School of Nursing preferences and the applicant's individual interview.

An Orvis School of Nursing representative is available to meet with students who are not offered admission. There is no wait list for applicants. Students should contact Julie Woodard or their DHS Adviser to discuss reapplying to the program.

Admission Interviews

Interviews will be held at the University of Nevada, Reno. If you are selected for an interview, the date and time will be included with the invitation. Interview dates are not negotiable and cannot be rescheduled.

While qualified students may apply to the Orvis School of Nursing undergraduate program multiple times, applicants are limited to a maximum of two admission interviews. Once the two admission interviews have been conducted, admission applications will no longer be accepted. The Admissions, Progressions & Student Affairs (APSA) committee will review advisor-supported petitions for any document-supported exceptions.

Academic Advisement

If you have questions regarding the program or your application, please make an appointment to see an adviser. See the table below for contact details.

Student Type





Pre-nursing students

Division of Health Sciences Student Center

(775) 682-5930
(Voice message only)

OB 104A

Seeking second bachelor's degree

Kim Baxter (Last Name A - M)
Julie Woodard (Last Name N - Z)

Email only

PHS 324
PHS 328

RN-BSN students 
(already a registered nurse)

Glenn Hagerstrom

Email only

PHS 319

Class Repeat Policy

For admission purposes, the grades for the first two enrollment attempts in a given course will be averaged for the undergraduate BSN major admission application. Any prerequisite required for the nursing major application is subject to this policy. Students can enroll in any course multiple times to better comprehend the class content, but only the first two enrollments will be used to calculate the prerequisite GPA for admission.

Any grade of W (withdrawal) or R (grade replacement) will count as an enrollment attempt. If there is no grade in the first two enrollment attempts, the student is not eligible to apply to the major. In addition, the student is not eligible to apply if the first attempt is below a C grade and the second attempt is in progress. The student must wait to apply until the grades for the first two enrollment attempts have been recorded.

Differential Fees

The Orvis School of Nursing implements differential fees for courses required for the BSN, RN-to-BSN, MSN, BSN-to-DNP, post-MSN DNP degree programs and post-MSN certificate programs. That means the school charges a per credit hour fee in addition to the per credit hour tuition charged by the University for all NURS-prefix courses required in the respective program of study. Differential fees do not apply to any courses taken by prenursing students.

As indicated by Board of Regents policy, 15% of all revenue generated by differential fees goes directly toward financial aid for Orvis School of Nursing students.  The remaining revenue generated from differential fees is used for growth and enhancement of the programs offered through the Orvis School of Nursing.

Related Degrees and Programs

Contact Division of Health Sciences

Phone (775) 784-6977
Location Sarah H. Fleischmann Building

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