2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
    Jun 24, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

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Nursing (B.S.N.)

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Program Coordinator/Contact

Standard Option, Brookings
Shelly Brandenburger, Director of Student Services
SDSU Wagner Hall 335E
Brookings, SD 57007
605-688-4106 or 1-888-216-9806 ext. 2

Standard Option, Rapid City
Gale Folsland, Assistant Director
Rapid City site, SDSU
1011 11th Street
Rapid City, SD 57701
605-394-5390 or 1-888-819-1725

Standard Option, Sioux Falls
Camilla Veire, Advisor
College of Nursing, SDSU

2300 N. Career Avenue
Sioux Falls, SD 57107

Program Information

The Bachelor of Science in nursing program prepares graduates to practice in both hospital and non-hospital settings and have the foundation for advanced study in nursing.  The curriculum includes university core requirements, major support courses in communication and the social, physical, and biological sciences, and nursing major professional program courses. This education provides the foundation for the development of professional knowledge, critical thinking, ethical decision-making, leadership skills and pursuit of high standards in health care to influence quality health outcomes.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • Integrate theories and concepts from liberal education into nursing practice. (Cross-curricular Skill: Critical and Creative Thinking)
  • Integrate effective leadership skills to improve the quality of health care. (Cross-curricular Skill: Teamwork; Diversity, Inclusion and Equity)
  • Incorporate evidence-based practice. (Cross-curricular Skill: Inquiry and Analysis; Critical and Creative Thinking)
  • Demonstrate proficiency in patient care technologies and informatics. (Cross-curricular Skill: Information Literacy)
  • Evaluate the implications of health policy and health care delivery systems on the professional nursing practice environment.
  • Integrate effective interprofessional communication and collaboration into professional nursing practice. (Cross-curricular Skill: Teamwork)
  • Integrate behaviors that reflect nursing values and professional standards into practice. (Cross-curricular Skill: Ethical Reasoning; Diversity, Inclusion and Equity)
  • Provide patient-centered, quality care. (Cross-curricular Skill: Diversity, Inclusion and Equity)
  • Improve population health through health promotion and disease prevention.

Delivery Options

Three types of undergraduate curricula lead to the Bachelor of Science with a major in nursing: one for standard students, one for RNs who are academically prepared at the associate degree or diploma level and now seek a bachelor’s degree, and the accelerated option for students with non-nursing baccalaureate degrees who wish to obtain a degree in nursing. The Standard Option is designed to meet the educational needs of persons who are not registered nurses and can be completed in two and a half years on the Brookings and Rapid City campuses. The program is a year-round program completed in twenty months on Sioux Falls campus.

Standard B.S. Program Admission

Admissions Application Dates

  • September 25 is the admission application deadline to enter in the Spring Semester.
  • January 25 is the admission application deadline to enter in the Fall Semester.
  • The Brookings and Rapid City sites admit students to the professional program for both the Fall and Spring semesters.
  • The Sioux Falls site admits students to the professional program for the Spring semester.

Direct Admit Admission Requirements

High school seniors who wish to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from South Dakota State University have the option to apply for the Direct Admit program. The Direct Admit program guarantees admission into the professional program prior to the competitive selection process, for students who meet specific, pre-established criteria.  Students who do not meet the criteria for the Direct Admit program can apply for admission to the professional nursing program as part of a competitive application process, as long as all application requirements have been met.

Selection Criteria for the Direct Admit Program

To be considered for the Direct Admit program, applicants must:

  • be admitted as a first-time freshman nursing major at SDSU main campus in Brookings,
  • have a minimum 27 composite score on the ACT (SAT equivalent 1210), and 
  • submit the College of Nursing Direct Admit Application.

Direct Admit students are provisionally admitted to the professional program. They must meet a specific set of requirements during their first three semesters on the Brookings campus in order to begin the professional program at the start of the fourth semester. Once admitted in the fall of their freshman year, Direct Admit students must:

  • be enrolled as a full-time student each semester,
  • participate in the Fishback Honors College and meet the Fishback Honors College progression standards required for priority registration each semester (students with a 27 or higher ACT are automatically admitted to Fishback Honors College),
  • apply to the professional nursing major* before or during their 3rd semester on campus, once all Pre-Nursing courses are completed or in progress, and
  • complete the following core requirements:
    • System General Education Requirement (SGR) #1: Written Communication - ENGL 101 - Composition I (COM) [SGR #1]  
    • One course from the System General Education Requirement (SGR) #2: Oral Communication list
    • One course from the System General Education Requirement (SGR) #4: Humanities list
    • System General Education Requirement (SGR) #5: Mathematics
    • NURS 119 - First Year Seminar (COM)  
  • earn a letter grade of ‘C’ or higher (no D, F, or Withdrawal grades) in all required Pre-Nursing courses:

*Application to the nursing major is required for validation purposes. Students must pass a background check and drug screening after provisional acceptance into the nursing major.

If a Direct Admit student does not maintain eligibility, their application to the Nursing major will be considered in the competitive application pool, as long as application requirements have been met.

Competitive Admission Requirements

To be considered for competitive admission to the Standard Option, students must have:

Any student eligible for regular admission to SDSU who plans to enroll in the College of Nursing, Department of Undergraduate Nursing, can be accepted into nursing and will have an academic advisor from the College of Nursing. During the semester in which students are completing their final Pre-Nursing courses, they apply for admission to the professional program. Applicants with courses in progress at the time of application will be required to provide proof of enrollment in those courses with the application form.

Fulfillment of course and application requirements does not ensure admission. The number of students admitted to the professional program may vary depending upon available clinical facilities, qualified faculty and resources.

Additional Coursework Policies

Students who fail (earned a “D” or “F”) two or more of the Pre-Nursing science courses (CHEM 106-106L  or CHEM 112-112L , or CHEM 108-108L  or CHEM 114-114L ; MICR 231-231L ; BIOL 221-221L , BIOL 325-325L ), will not be admitted to the professional program. Students who fail one foundational course (CHEM 106-106L  or CHEM 112-112L , CHEM 108-108L  or CHEM 114-114L ; MICR 231-231L ; BIOL 221-221L , BIOL 325-325L ; PSYC 101 ; one of the following: SOC 100 , SOC 150 , or SOC 240  ; NUTR 315 ; HDFS 210 ), or repeat and fail the same course a second time, will not be admitted to the professional program. If the failure is over five years old, it does not count as a failure. Students who have taken Anatomy or Physiology more than seven years prior to their admission date will be required to update these courses.

Nursing Regulations

Students in the College of Nursing are governed by the regulations and policies that apply to all students at SDSU but are also governed by requirements of the College of Nursing, professional standards and standards of the assigned clinical agencies. These requirements are presented in detail in the College of Nursing Undergraduate Handbook. This includes but is not limited to health requirements, immunizations, background checks, and drug screens.

Transfer Students

Transfer students who have begun but not completed a nursing program (practical, associate, or baccalaureate) at another educational institution must submit a letter to the College of Nursing indicating their reason for transfer. Three letters of recommendation must be submitted to the College of Nursing: one from the dean/director of their former program and two from faculty members stating the student left in good standing.  If transfer is approved, they must apply for admission to SDSU.

Language Proficiency

As the nurse is a professional who deals with human lives, it is mandatory that a higher level of English fluency be met in order to ensure the safety of clients and students. The English as a Second Language requirement for the College of Nursing is the same as that required by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. The College of Nursing requires all students who meet the definition of student with English as a Second Language to complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or an accepted substitute. English as a Second Language is defined as a student who was instructed and spoke primarily in a language other than English in the K-12 grades or primary and secondary schooling. The minimum TOEFL score required for admission to the professional program is 84 (iBT), with a minimum speaking score of 26. The required IELTS band score for admission to the professional program is 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each module. The TOEFL or IELTS is required for all students for whom English is a second language, regardless of residency status. These scores are required before the student will be accepted into the professional program. The student is responsible for all testing fees.

Academic Requirements

A GPA of 2.5 or higher is required for continuation in the professional program and graduation from the College of Nursing. A grade of “C” or higher is required in all professional program courses. Students may repeat one failed professional program course with permission from the College of Nursing. Upon failing a second professional program course, the student is dismissed from the major. A student who needs to repeat a failed professional program course is re-enrolled in the course on a space available basis. A student who fails a course due to unsafe practice in a clinical experience will not be eligible for readmission to the professional program nursing major, unless evidence is submitted that the unsafe behaviors have been corrected.

All undergraduate and graduate nursing students are expected to adhere to the principles of the Code of Ethics for Nurses (American Nurses Association, 2015). The Code of Ethics for Nurses communicates a standard of professional behavior expected throughout the total program and in each individual nursing course. Therefore, in addition to dismissal for academic failure, the faculty and administration of the Departments of Undergraduate Nursing and Graduate Nursing reserve the right to dismiss any student enrolled in either the undergraduate or graduate program for unethical, dishonest, illegal, or conduct inconsistent with the Code of Ethics for Nurses or legal requirements.

Course Delivery Format

The professional program combines lecture and hands-on experiences that teach students to practice nursing with expertise, professionalism, and a passion for helping others. The faculty engage students in classroom, online, simulation laboratory, and clinical learning experiences in health care facilities and in community settings.

Requirements for Nursing Major: 120 Credits

Bachelor of Science in Nursing 


Taken as needed to complete any additional degree requirements.

Total Required Credits: 120

Summary of Program Requirements

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

System General Education Requirements 32-33 Credit Hours
Pre-Nursing Requirements 20 Credit Hours
Major Requirements 61 Credit Hours
Electives** 6-7 Credit Hours

**Taken as needed to complete any additional degree requirements.

Academic Advising Guide Sheet

The goal of the academic advising guide sheets and sample plans of study is to promote undergraduate student success by guiding all students to timely completion of an undergraduate degree. Students are not limited to the course sequence provided for their academic program. Instead, the sample plan of study is one possible path to completing your degree and is meant to be used as a guide for planning purposes in consultation with an academic advisor. The plans also help students prepare for meetings with their academic advisor and track their progress in their selected academic program.

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