School of Nursing

Director and Associate Professor: S. Gatto (PhD), 450-3119
Professor: J. Meaux (PhD)
Associate Professor: P. Ashcraft (PhD), M. Garnica (DNP)
Assistant Professor: L. Gillis (DNP), K. Griffith (DNP), L. Hall (DNP), S. Harris (DNP), K. Jordan (PhD), T. Kabore (PhD), S. Nadelson (PhD),  L. Wood (DNP)
Clinical Instructor: J. Baker (MSN), A. Beaver (MSN),  A. Cheves (MSN), T. Elliff (MSN), E. Fifer (MSN), E. Gabbard (MSN), A. Gartman (MSN), M. Grantham (MSN), R. Gray (MSN),  K. Quinn (MSN), S. Stone (MSN), A. Tucker (MSN)

[1] Purposes

The School of Nursing is committed to educating students at the baccalaureate and graduate level to address evolving health care needs and to advance the practice of nursing in an ever-changing society. Graduates of the baccalaureate program have the foundation for graduate study.

[2] Pre-Licensure Baccalaureate Degree (BSN) Program

Upon successful completion of the program, the student is awarded a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree and is eligible to apply to take the Registered Nurse (RN) licensing examination (NCLEX-RN). The professional program requires a minimum of sixty credit hours during the last two years of the student’s degree studies. These hours include classroom, clinical, simulated learning, and a variety of experiences in health care agencies, institutions, and communities in Central Arkansas.

Per state law, persons convicted of certain crimes will not be eligible to take the RN licensure examination. In addition, applicants for licensure must have a valid United States Social Security number.  For more information and a list of crimes, refer to www.arsbn.org, Nurse Practice Act, chapter 3, § 17-87-312.

[2.1] Admission to the Pre-Licensure BSN Track

Admission is selective and competitive. Preference is given to University of Central Arkansas pre-nursing students. Applications to the pre-licensure BSN program are due by November 15th for the following fall nursing class. One class is admitted each year. Applications are available each October 1st and may be obtained at uca.edu/nursing.

Minimum admission criteria include the following:

  • Minimum GPA of 2.7.
  • Completion of:
    WRTG 1310* and WRTG 1320*
    MATH 1390*
    CHEM 1402* or CHEM 1450*
    BIOL 1410* and BIOL 2410* or equivalent courses*
    (Parts I and II must be completed at the same institution)
    PSYC 1300*
    BIOL 2411*
    NUTR 1300*
    FACS 2341* or PSYC 2370*
    MATH 2311* or PSCI 2312* or PSYC 2330* or QMTH 2330* or SOC 2321*
    COMM 1300
    BIOL 4311*
  • Lower Division Core:
    Diversity in World Cultures/Social Science option
    Lower Division Core: Diversity in Creative Works option
    Lower Division Core: Fine Art/Humanities option
    Lower Division Core: History/Government option
    Electives – 5 credit hours

Courses marked with an asterisk (*) must be completed with a minimum of a C.

  • Applicants not born in the United States or in a country where English is the official language must document their English proficiency. An official score of 83 or higher on the iBT TOEFL exam is required. The exam must have been taken within the last two (2) calendar years. Only iBT TOEFL scores received directly from ETS or the UCA Testing Center will be accepted as valid.
  • Submission of a complete application and other required documents within published deadlines

A more detailed list of criteria and information regarding the application review process should be obtained from the School of Nursing.

[2.2] Program of Study for the Pre-Licensure BSN

The baccalaureate program consists of 60 hours of pre-nursing/prerequisite courses and sixty hours of nursing credit hours. Courses in the professional major are sequentially planned. Each nursing course is usually offered only once each academic year.

Abbreviation Key – UCA Core Program

[2.2.1] UCA Lower-Division Core and Related Major Requirements (60 hours)

WRTG 1310 and 1320
MATH 1390
PSYC 1300
CHEM 1402 or CHEM 1450
BIOL 1410 and 2410
NUTR 1300
PSCI 1330 or HIST 2301 or HIST 2302
COMM 1300 or MGMT 2301 or MKTG 2376
Critical Inquiry: Fine Arts/Humanities category
Diversity: Diversity in Creative Works category
Diversity in World Cultures: Social Science option
BIOL 2411
BIOL 4311
FACS 2341 or PSYC 2370
PSYC 2330 or SOC 2321 or MATH 2311 or PSCI 2312 or QMTH 2330
Electives: 5 credit hours

[2.2.2.] Nursing Major and Upper-Division UCA Core Requirements (60 hours)

NURS 2305 Health Assessment
NURS 3102 Pharmacology I
NURS 3205 Pharmacology II
NURS 3303 Fundamental Concepts for Professional Nursing
NURS 3304 Nursing Care of the Older Adult
NURS 3405 Essential Nursing Skills
NURS 3406 Child and Adolescent Nursing
NURS 3407 Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing
NURS 3525 Medical-Surgical Nursing I
NURS 4315 Research & Evidence-Based Practice [UD UCA Core: I, C]
NURS 4320 Health Policy and Professional Issues in Nursing [UD UCA Core: D]
NURS 4335 Nursing Informatics
NURS 4403 Maternal Newborn Nursing
NURS 4404 Nursing Leadership and Management
NURS 4430 Immersion Experience [UD UCA Core: Z]
NURS 4530 Community and Population Health Nursing [UD UCA Core: R]
NURS 4525 Medical Surgical Nursing II

[3] RN to BSN

The RN-to-BSN track is for the Registered Nurse (RN) who is a graduate of any accredited associate degree or hospital diploma program and seeks a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. The UCA School of Nursing complies with the Arkansas Nursing Education Progression Model.  Visit  uca.edu/nursing or contact the School of Nursing for additional information about the RN-to-BSN track.

Students who have graduated with an associate degree in nursing from one of the Arkansas Community College Partners should refer to the transfer agreement for that college when determining the courses needed to be eligible for admission into the UCA Nursing program. (See uca.edu/2plus2/agreements/.)

[3.1] Admission to the RN-to-BSN Track

Admission is selective and competitive. Students applying to this track are admitted spring, summer, and fall. Requirements for admission to the RN-to-BSN track are the following:

  1. Current unencumbered Arkansas RN license.
  2. An associate degree or hospital diploma earned from a nationally accredited nursing program leading to RN licensure. (Graduates of non-accredited schools will be considered on an individual basis.)
  3. Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5.
  4. Completion of the following non-nursing prerequisite courses (34 credit hours) with a minimum of  “C”.  If applicable, UCA courses below are accompanied by their Arkansas Course Transfer System (ACTS) equivalent in brackets. Visit the ACTS website at http://acts.adhe.edu to determine course equivalents at other Arkansas institutions.
    • BIOL 1410 Human Anatomy & Physiology I [ACTS: BIOL2404]
    • BIOL 2410 Human Anatomy & Physiology II [ACTS: BIOL2414]
    • BIOL 2411 Microbiology in Human Affairs [ACTS: BIOL2004]
    • CHEM 1402 General Chemistry for Health Sciences [ACTS: CHEM1214] or CHEM 2450 Introduction to Organic & Biochemistry [ACTS: CHEM1224] or CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I [ACTS: CHEM1414] or CHEM 1451 College Chemistry II [CHEM1424]
    • MATH 1390 College Algebra [ACTS: MATH1103]
    • MATH 2311 Elementary Statistics [ACTS: MATH2103] or UCA equivalent (PSYC 2330, QMTH 2330, SOC 2321, or PSCI 2312)
    • PSYC 1300 General Psychology [ACTS: PSYC1103]
    • PSYC 2370 Development Psychology [ACTS: PSYC2103] or FACS 2341 Lifespan Development
    • WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing [ACTS: ENGL1013] or HONC 1310 Honors Core I
    • WRTG 1320 Academic Writing & Research [ACTS: ENGL1023] or ENGL 1320 Interdisciplinary Writing & Research [ACTS: ENGL1023] or HONC 1320 Honors Core II
  5. Completion of any remaining state minimum core requirements or UCA Lower Division Core with a minimum of a “D”.
    • 6 credit hours of Fine Arts and/or Humanities courses (see the current lower-division UCA Core check sheet for qualifying courses and ACTS equivalents: check sheet link)
    • 3-credit-hour Social Science course besides PSYC 1300 General Psychology (see the current lower-division UCA Core check sheet for qualifying courses and ACTS equivalents: check sheet link)
    • HIST 2301 The Making of America [ACTS: HIST2113] or HIST 2302 America in the Modern Era [ACTS: HIST2123] or PSCI 1330 US Government & Politics [ACTS: PLSC2003]
    • COMM 1300 Principles of Communication [ACTS: SPCH1003] or UCA equivalent (MGMT 2301 or MKTG 2376)
  6. At least 1000 hours of nursing employment during the past 12 months if the associate degree or hospital diploma was earned from a nationally accredited program more than twelve months prior to admission. No work experience is required if the associate degree or hospital diploma was earned from a nationally accredited program in the past 12 months. Graduates of non-accredited programs are handled on an individual basis.
  7. Admission to UCA

[3.2] RN-to-BSN Requirements

Qualified RNs receive 42 hours of BSN nursing credit based on their prior educational program. Credit will be placed on the student’s transcript for the following courses after all other RN-BSN requirements have been met (see below). Students do not enroll in or pay tuition for these courses.

NURS 2305 Health Assessment
NURS 3102 Pharmacology I
NURS 3205 Pharmacology II
NURS 3303 Fundamental Concepts for Professional Nursing
NURS 3304 Nursing Care of the Older Adult
NURS 3405 Essential Nursing Skills
NURS 3406 Child and Adolescent Nursing
NURS 3407 Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing
NURS 3525 Medical-Surgical Nursing I
NURS 4403 Maternal Newborn Nursing
NURS 4430 Immersion Experience
NURS 4525 Medical Surgical Nursing II

Once admitted, students will need to complete 12 months of online courses (30 credit hours). The RN-to-BSN track is offered totally online. To be awarded the BSN degree from UCA, the RN-to-BSN student must complete the following required nursing courses.

NURS 4245 RN to BSN Transitions
NURS 4V14 Special Topics in Nursing (3 hours) or 3 hours of upper-division Nursing electives
NURS 4315 Research & Evidence-Based Practice [UD UCA Core: I, C]
NURS 4320 Health Policy & Professional Issues in Nursing [UD UCA Core: D]
NURS 4335 Nursing Informatics
NURS 4340 Health & Physical Assessment for RNs
NURS 4345 Pathophysiology Clinical Applications for RNs
NURS 4511 Community and Population Health Nursing for RNs [UD UCA Core: R]
NURS 4516 Nursing Leadership & Management for RNs

Capstone (Z) requirement of the Upper Division (UD) Core is assumed as met by prior learning assessment (PLA) and the students’ clinical work experiences as registered nurses.

[4] LPN to BSN

The LPN-to-BSN track is for the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) who wishes to become a Registered Nurse (RN) with a Bachelor in Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.  The LPN-to-BSN track is available for LPNs who are already licensed to practice nursing based on the Arkansas Nursing Education Progression Model.

Visit uca.edu/nursing or contact the School of Nursing for additional information about the LPN-to-BSN track.

[5] Honors in Nursing

[Jump to Recognition of Academic Achievement for general information about Honors in the Majors.]

During the spring semester of the junior year qualified students are invited to become candidates for the Honors in Nursing program. The student must have earned at least an overall GPA of 3.5 and a major GPA of 3.7. The honors program offers opportunities to explore special interests in nursing through an independent project. On successful completion of the project, the student is eligible to graduate with honors in nursing.

[6] Master’s and Doctoral Degrees

See Graduate Bulletin.

[7] Accreditation Status

The baccalaureate and master’s degree programs are approved by the Arkansas State Board of Nursing. The baccalaureate, master’s, post-master’s certificate, and DNP programs in nursing at UCA are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 887-6791, www.aacnnursing.org/CCNE.

[8] School of Nursing Policies

The current editions of the UCA Student Handbook and the Nursing Student Handbook: Baccalaureate Program specify the rules, regulations, and policies that apply to all UCA undergraduate nursing students. It is the responsibility of the student to know and follow the most recent policies and procedures.

[9] Courses in Nursing (NURS)

Follow this link for NURS course descriptions: course link.