Feb 06, 2023  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

School of Nursing

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Location: Founders Hall/Health Innovation Center  FH 459
Telephone: 859-572-5895
Fax: 859-572-6098
Email Address: nursing@nku.edu
Web Address: http://nursing.nku.edu
Director-School of Nursing: Kim Dinsey-Reed
Other Key Personnel:

Associate Director of Undergraduate Nursing Programs: Erin Robinson
B.S.N. Program Director: Lisa Cuntz
A.B.S.N. Program Director: Traci Freeman
R.N.-B.S.N. Program Director: Marybeth Baribeau

Full-Time Faculty: Judy Audas, Tracy Ripberger, Deborah Chilcote, Lisa Cuntz, Gina Fieler, Traci Freeman, Roxanne Gall, Judy Godsey, Erin Gardlik, Sandra Grinnell, Courtney Hamilton, Julie Hart,  Jillian Boyle, Teresa Huber, Jennifer Hunter, Erin Kelly, Brett Kendon, Adrianne Lane, Lisa Long, Caron Martin, Carrie A. McCoy, Jennifer Moreland, Kesha Nelson, Shawn Nordheim, Kathy Noyes, Karen O’Connell, Marybeth Baribeau, Catherine Pence, Kris Pfendt, Anita Phillips, Angela Powell, Angela Riley, Denise Robinson, Erin Robinson, Lynn Smith, Elizabeth Stine, Gannon Tagher, Michelle Teschendorf, Karen Vietz, Lynne Zajac, Brittany Sorrell, Beth Hickey, Joy Melvin

Thinking about the discipline: Nurses are key members of the healthcare team and focus on patient education, promotion of health, and prevention of illness. Nurses work in hospitals, community agencies, business and industry. Nurses also work as travel nurses, flight nurses, forensic nurses, legal consultants, and much more.

Nursing is a rigorous course of study and only the most dedicated students are successful. NKU’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing prepares traditional college students for entry-level practice in this exciting field. The Accelerated BSN (ABSN) program is designed for individuals that wish to become a registered nurse and have previously completed a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field. Knowledge acquired in the nursing program can be applied directly to practice. Graduates of the program are prepared to function as providers of nursing care, managers of care, and as members of the profession of nursing. The RN to BSN program provides career mobility for the registered nurse. The coursework blends scientific and humanistic theories with nursing theories to provide graduates with a foundation for professional nursing practice.

Graduates are awarded the degree of Bachelor of Science in nursing and, as pre-licensure graduates, are eligible to apply to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Graduates earning a BSN are eligible to continue their nursing education at the master’s and doctoral levels.

BSN and ABSN Programs
Special opportunities for our students
: The ABSN and BSN programs include planned clinical experiences in the community, local healthcare agencies in northern Kentucky and the Greater Cincinnati area, and NKU’s state-of-the-art simulation laboratory.

Nursing students have opportunities to become members of the Student Nurses Association, College of Health and Human Services Student Ambassadors, African American student support group, Student Advisory Board, and American Assembly for Men in Nursing. Additionally, students may participate in service-learning opportunities with the Nurse Advocacy Center for the Underserved and other community agencies. Interested students also have an opportunity to study nursing abroad in the summers.

Awards given in the BSN/ABSN program include: membership in Sigma Theta Tau Rho Theta Chapter (honor society for nursing) as well as leadership, academic, and caring spirit awards.

Special admission requirements for traditional and BSN and ABSN programs: Nursing is a selective admission program. All applicants must be accepted to NKU as degree-seeking students and must submit a separate application for the nursing program when eligible to apply.

To be eligible for the nursing program all prerequisites and co-requisites must be completed with a C or higher; grades of C- are not accepted. All science courses taken as prerequisites for admission to the program must be fewer than five years old as of the first day of the semester in which the program is started. For entry into the BSN Programs, the student’s GPA must be 3.0 on the last 30 credit hours or the cumulative GPA, whichever is higher.

English proficiency:  A certain level of English proficiency is necessary for academic success in nursing as well as for patient and client safety. For this reason, applicants whose native language is other than English must demonstrate an established level of English proficiency by taking the Internet-based TOEFL as part of the application process and must have a minimum cumulative score of 90 with minimum individual scores of 26 in speaking, 22 in listening, 20 in writing, and 22 in reading. Only official scores will be accepted and the testing must be within two years of application to the program. “Official language” is defined as an individual’s first acquired language and the language of educational instruction. For a complete list of NKU approved countries with English as the “official language,” please contact the Office of International Students and Scholars at 859-572-6517. The test of English as a foreign language is offered by the Educational Testing Service and may be taken at various test centers throughout the world. Students must register for and take the Internet-based TOEFL. Only the iBT will be accepted for applicants to the undergraduate nursing programs. Students need to enter a code for Northern Kentucky University when they register for the TOEFL. The school code is # 1574. Students must take the test early enough to ensure that the results are reported to the university by required application deadlines.

The TOEFL requirement may be appealed under extenuating circumstances. The appeal should be made in writing to the Admission Progression Committee (APG Committee). The Department of Nursing may request an applicant have an interview with the Associate Director of Undergraduate Nursing Studies or designee.

Admission to nursing is provisional based on successful completion of prerequisites, GPA, passage of the criminal background check administered through NKU’s police department (via online application), and minimum score on the TOEFL, if required.

Nursing program considerations:  Applicants without a bachelor’s degree should see program requirements for the traditional BSN program. Those with a bachelor’s degree who want the accelerated track should see requirements for the ABSN program.

Nursing majors are not required to have a minor or focus.

The Kentucky Board of Nursing has regulations regarding previous felony and misdemeanor convictions that must be addressed prior to sitting for the licensure examination.

The department reserves the right to change the program of study as needed to fulfill state approval and national certification requirements, including the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and Kentucky Board of Nursing.

All B.S.N. and A.B.S.N. students are required to participate in the Evolve® Curriculum Support Program. This is a commercial program that provides additional resources for student learning. See B.S.N. and A.B.S.N. program descriptions for details.

Progression requirements:  Students who earn less than a C in a nursing course will be required to repeat the course, along with specified co-requisite courses, if applicable, and prior to progressing to the next semester of nursing courses.  The student must re-apply to the program as a re-admission applicant to the nursing program.  Students may repeat one semester of courses before being dismissed from the nursing program.  If a transfer student has a prior failure in a nursing course, this is counted as one repeat episode.   Students dismissed from the BSN nursing program will not be able to reapply for two years following the dismissal.  Students must complete the program in 8 semesters from the date in which the student began nursing courses.  

Statement regarding when courses are offered in the Department of Nursing: Independent studies:
NRS 299 Independent Study (1-3 credits) ” and “NRS 499 Independent Study (0-3 credits) ” will be offered, as needed, each semester.

NRS 300 Remediation (1 credit) ” will be required for traditional BSN students who score below 900 on the Fundamentals HESI specialty exam.

NRS 400 HESI-RN Exit Test Preparation I (1 credit) “-will be required in the first seven weeks of the final nursing semester for students who score below 900 on the Medical-Surgical HESI Specialty exam.

NRS 401 NRS 401 HESI-RN Exit Test Preparation II (1 credit) ”* will be required in the second session of the student’s final semester for students who score below 900 on the HESI RN-Exit exam.

*This course can be taken voluntarily by students who achieve over 900 on the HESI RN-Exit exam on a space available basis.

RN to BSN Program

The RN to BSN program allows Registered Nurses to expand their knowledge base to incorporate scientific and humanistic theories with nursing theories and evidence based practice to provide graduates with a foundation for professional nursing practice.  Our online RN to BSN program offers flexibility and affordability, allowing the nurse to take her/his nursing career to the next level.

Northern Kentucky University’s RN to BSN program has a proven history of producing alumni who become successful leaders in their professional endeavors. Through innovative use of technology, our faculty provide an up close and personal educational experience.

Features of the Program: Our online RN to BSN Program offers the flexibility that most working RNs desire, helping them to make the most of their associate degree or diploma degree in nursing.

Unique features of this program include:

  • No testing to validate previous nursing education
  • Easy transfer of prior college course work
  • Nursing courses offered online in 7-week sessions
  • Non-nursing courses offered online in 7-week sessions
  • Curriculum designed to accommodate working nurses

Work and Go to School: Most students work full-time and have family responsibilities. Our fully online RN to BSN provides the needed flexibility to successfully complete one’s degree.

Transfer Friendly: We understand that there are numerous pathways to nursing. At NKU, we pride ourselves on being transfer friendly. In addition to graduates of regionally accredited institutions, we are pleased to welcome students from various colleges through articulation agreements.

Admissions Requirements: Individuals who have completed a diploma or associate degree program in nursing, from an approved institution, who have an RN license in good standing, and who meet the admission criteria are eligible to apply for the RN to BSN online program.

Application Deadlines: The RN to BSN program starts a new group of students every seven weeks. Applications are accepted on a continual basis allowing applicants to begin at the beginning of each 7-week session.

RN to BSN curriculum: To begin the RN to BSN curriculum, students must have completed the prerequisites and can have no more than 12 credit hours remaining to complete in the Foundations of Knowledge. The curriculum consists of baccalaureate-level nursing courses in areas such as Role Transformation; Quality Care for Vulnerable Populations; Population-Centered Health in the Community; and Leadership.  The RN to BSN program does not offer a “traditional” clinical experience; instead, our program contains a Leadership Practicum designed to provide a culminating practice experience within a clinical setting where students will integrate new practice, knowledge, and skills.  

Progression Requirements: Students must maintain a GPA of at least 2.5.  All specific required courses must be completed with a C or higher, a C- will not be accepted.  Students earning less than a C will need to repeat the course(s).  Students may repeat only one semester of nursing before being dismissed from the program.  Students dismissed cannot reapply for at least one year.

Transfer Credits:  A complete assessment of previously earned credits can be obtained from an academic advisor upon application to the program.

All baccalaureate nursing programs are approved by the Kentucky Board of Nursing, Suite 300, 312 Whittington Parkway, Louisville, KY 40222-5172, 502-429-3300. All baccalaureate programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 2001, P: (202) 463-6930.



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