BSN Program

Frequently Asked Questions

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When are the applications due?

There are two admission rounds each year for admission into the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

For Fall admission:

  • Application due December 1st
  • Transcripts due January 11th
  • Students will be notified February 15th

For Spring admission:

  • Application due July 1st
  • Transcripts due August 31st
  • Students will be notified by September 15th

I am a senior in high school looking to apply to JMU and the nursing program. When will I apply?

Students who are currently in high school will need to first apply to JMU and be accepted. Once accepted to JMU, students will typically take 4 semesters of general education and prerequisite courses. Once the student has completed the minimum requirements and prerequisites for the nursing program, they are able to submit the BSN application. Typically students will apply their second year in December for Fall admission.

I am currently attending another 4 year university or community college and have completed all of the prerequisites to your program; can I transfer directly into the nursing program?

No. In order to apply to the JMU BSN program you must first submit an application to JMU for undergraduate admission. Once you have been accepted, you will then take one semester (full-time) at JMU. Once you have completed one semester you will then be able to apply to the JMU Bachelors of Nursing Program.

Transfer Student Information

I am currently attending another university and have already taken some nursing courses, will the nursing courses transfer?

We are happy to evaluate the nursing courses you would like to transfer; however, due to the state licensing process, the courses we offer are very specific. Therefore, the courses will only transfer if it meets specific objectives and criteria. Typically, nursing courses do not transfer well.

I'm a student in the Virginia Community College System and will receive my associate's degree and have guaranteed admission to JMU. If I am admitted to JMU, will I also be guaranteed admission to nursing?

Admission to JMU does not guarantee admission to nursing. If you are a student in the VCCS who plans to transfer to the JMU Nursing Program, you should consult the Transfer Guide for VCCS and Richard Bland College on the JMU website. If you complete an Associate in Science Degree in the VCCS, you do not need to complete General Education courses at JMU. However, you do need to complete the courses that are listed in the transfer guide as equivalent to each of the nursing Prerequisite Courses at JMU. You can take these prerequisites either at JMU or in the VCCS.

If you do not earn an Associate in Science degree in the VCCS, you will need to complete both General Education requirements and the Nursing Prerequisite Courses before you can enter the nursing program. You can use the Transfer Guide for VCCS and Richard Bland College to help you determine which courses will best prepare you for transfer to JMU.

It also is a good idea for transfer students to contact the Transfer Student Coordinator and review which classes will transfer and which will not. For more information about transferring to JMU from a community college please email or review the Transfer Advising Webpage.

I currently hold a Bachelor's degree from another institution, what is the process for applying?

Unfortunately, JMU has a policy that states that students who hold a baccalaureate degree from another institution may not earn a second baccalaureate at James Madison. See more information about the 2nd degree policy.

What requirements do I need to meet in order to apply to the nursing program?

Get Advising Help for the Nursing Major

In order to apply to the nursing program you must meet the following requirements:

  • Have a minimum JMU GPA of a 3.00
  • Complete 36 credit hours prior to beginning the program
  • Be an enrolled JMU student
  • *Transfer students must complete 1 semester as a full-time student at JMU prior to applying the BSN program
  • Must be declared as a nursing major
  • No grades lower than a C- will be accepted in any prerequisite course
  • Complete the following courses (View a Sample Program of Study for Freshman and Sophomore Year)
  • Prior to applying:
    • Chem 120 – Concepts of Chemistry
    • MATH 220 – Statistics
    • 2 Biology courses (choose from BIO 270 – physiology, BIO 280 – Microbiology, or Bio 290 – Anatomy)
  • Before entering the program:
    • NUTR 280 – Nutrition
    • GPSYC 160 – Developmental Psychology
    • 3rd Biology course (choose from BIO 270, BIO 280, or BIO 290)

Can I send the BSN Admission Application in before I am admitted to JMU?

Please do not send your BSN application to JMU prior to being admitted to JMU. We encourage you to submit the BSN Application when you have completed at least 36 credit hours. In order to be considered during the application round you must be accepted to JMU, be a full-time student for at least one semester, and meet the BSN requirements.

If I am a JMU student and apply, will I be guaranteed a spot in the nursing program?

No, the application process is competitive and we typically have 120-200 students apply each admission round for 113 spots.

Is there ever a wait list?

Students are selected for each class competitively. Once students are notified of their admission offer and have accepted the offer, their place in the program is guaranteed. If a student does not accept the offer of admission, another student will be selected to be offered admission into the program. Students who are not admitted and wish to be considered for subsequent semesters must reapply.

What happens to me if my GPA is below a 3.00?

Students whose GPA falls below a 3.00 prior to enrollment in nursing are normally classified as “Not Now Qualified.” We will consider the application of students who hold a GPA of a 3.00 or higher. If your GPA is below a 3.0 you can reapply to the program when you raise it to a 3.00.

How many students are admitted each round?

Nursing is a very popular career choice nationally and that trend is no different here at JMU. Each semester we have approximately 120-200 students apply to our program. Out of those students, 113 students are selected each application round for a total of 226 per year.

What are my odds of getting into the program?

Although it is not possible to predict the odds of admission, we can give you some trends. The number of applicants to the JMU nursing program has increased during recent years as a result of the nursing shortage and increased salaries and benefits associated with nursing. Admission is competitive and based on all academic qualifications. However, GPA and grades within the math and science classes continue to rank as a very strong predictor of successful entry into and completion of the program.

How is admission to the BSN program determined?

Admission is determined using a scoring rubric which includes grades from the math and science prerequisites as well as the JMU cumulative GPA. Students also complete a 250 word personal statement which is only reviewed in the event of a scoring tie.

If I am admitted to the program is there an opportunity for scholarships?

BSN Program

What is repeat-forgive?

The repeat-forgive credit option is recommended for failed courses. However, you only get two the entire time you are at JMU, so they need to be used wisely. It is a good idea to use repeat forgive if you receive a D or lower in a course that is prerequisite to nursing. Repeat Forgive substitutes the “repeat” grade for the “failing” grade in your GPA. It is a good idea to discuss repeat forgive decisions with your adviser.

Students may elect to repeat up to two courses during their enrollment at JMU on a repeat/forgive basis following university policy. For repeat credit courses specifically, Biology, Chemistry and Statistics at JMU or other institutions which apply to the calculation for admission, the nursing program will average the grade of the repeated course for a final grade used in the admission metric calculation.​

What is your NCLEX passing rate for your BSN?

Nursing NCLEX pass rate
Year Number of Test Takers with Passing Scores Total Number of Test Takers Percentage of Passing Scores
2020* 87 87 100%
2019 162 168 96%
2018 174 179 97.21%
2017 162 171 94.7%
2016 141 167 84.4%
2015 159 171 92.98%
2014 110 117 94.02%

* through March 31,2020

Are you an accredited program?

The baccalaureate degree in nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (

The BSN program is fully approved by the Virginia State Board of Nursing.

Does the JMU BSN program meet licensure requirements in states other than Virginia?

Are all your faculty members practicing nurses?

Yes, in order to be a faculty member with JMU nursing all faculty must be current on their nursing license

Approximately how many clinical hours will I get with the program?

Every 1 credit hour of clinical equals 45 hours at your practicum site. By the end of the 2-year program you will have approximately 540 clinical hours completed.

We work with many different clinical partners.  Clinical experiences and sites vary by semester and can be located anywhere within a one hour drive of campus.

What are technical standards?

Technical standards are basic physical, cognitive, and psychosocial skills and abilities that are required for nursing practice. The following standards were developed to guide students to make an informed decision regarding nursing as a career. In order to complete the nursing curriculum and enter practice as a registered professional nurse, all students must possess abilities and skills in the areas of sensation, communication, motor function and behavioral proficiency. View a complete list of technical standards

If admitted, approximately how much will the program cost?

What is the Admission Appeal Process?

The admission appeal process is the means by which a denied applicant for admission to the JMU Bachelors of Nursing Program may request a second review by the BSN Admissions and Progression committee.

Will I need a car once I enter the BSN program?

You are responsible for transportation to and from all clinical sites. Many students choose to carpool.  If transportation is an issue for you, you will need to speak with our Clinical Coordinator before beginning the program to discuss options.