College of Nursing



The one-of-a-kind Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing major is developed for today’s registered nurse. It allows practicing nurses the opportunity to build a degree based on the nurse’s career needs. The USF nurse can focus on leadership/management, patient/staff education and/or clinical excellence.

The program is fully web-based with options of completion in five part-time semesters or three full-time semesters (with program director approval). USF nursing students partake in experiential learning hours, allowing them to apply the knowledge and skills to clinical practice.

About This Degree

The RN to BSN program prepares current registered nurses, educated through an associate’s degree in nursing, to maximize effective patient care, to provide career mobility and advancement, and to provide the foundation for potential advanced education. Guided by the Institute of Medicine’s Report on The Future of Nursing (2013), many hospitals are increasing the emphasis and/or placing full emphasis on hiring baccalaureate prepared nurses. The RN to BSN option at the USF College of Nursing provides a high-quality online education for nurses to advance their practice within clinical areas, nursing management, and beyond. The degree also opens doors for the pursuit of graduate studies in nursing – MSN, DNP and PhD.

Accreditations - Visit our Accreditation page to learn more.


  • Admission Requirements

    Prerequisites and More

    The RN to BSN program is for students currently licensed to practice as registered nurses. The RN to BSN option allows an RN with a diploma or an associate’s degree in nursing from a regionally accredited school to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

    Applicants must meet the following requirements before applying for this program:
    • Acceptance at USF (Tampa) as a degree-seeking undergraduate student
    • Application to the College of Nursing prior to the published deadline for the intended term of entry
    • An overall GPA of 2.5 or higher on all undergraduate work (excluding Associate of Science in Nursing courses) 
    • Associate’s degree in nursing from a regionally accredited institution; nursing diploma will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis 
    • Residence in the state of Florida with evidence of current Florida RN licensure in good standing  
    • Completion of the following prerequisite courses by the application deadline for the intended term of entry with a minimum grade of C in each:
      • English Composition I (3) ENC 1101
      • English Composition II (3) ENC 1102

    Students must be admitted by the USF Tampa Undergraduate Admissions Office before they can submit their application to the College of Nursing (students must have USF Tampa campus as their home campus). 

    The state-mandated nursing common prerequisites are required to be completed before graduation from the RN to BSN program. Students may be in progress of completing these nursing prerequisite courses while applying to the program. A grade of C or better is required. USF course numbers are listed for planning purposes.

    • BSC 2085/L Human Anatomy & Physiology I or any Human Anatomy & Physiology I course, 4 semester hours 
    • BSC 2086/L Human Anatomy & Physiology II or any Human Anatomy & Physiology II course, 4 semester hours 
    • Any CHM, BSC, PHY, PCB, BC  (Chemistry, Biology, Physics, or Biochemistry) course, 3 semester hours 
    • DEP 2004 Human Growth & Development course, 3 semester hours 
    • HUN 2201 Human Nutrition or any Human Nutrition course OR NUR 1192, 3 semester hours 
    • MCB 2000/L Microbiology or any Microbiology course, 4 semester hours 
    • Any PSY, SYG, or SOP (Psychology, Sociology, or Social Psychology) course, 3 semester hours 
    • STA 2014 or 2023 Statistics or any Statistics course, 3 semester hours 

    Important Notification:

    All admitted nursing students are required to complete a background check, immunization verification, and drug screening. Admitted students will be provided with the steps to complete this process.

    Complete By: First week of class
    Required Immunizations: MMR, Varicella, Hepatitis B, Tdap Booster (Documentation), TB Skin Test, CPR Certification (American Heart Association), Flu Shot

    Note: This requirement is not the same as the USF Student Health Services (USF Health Form) and cannot be submitted as a substitute.

    USF Foundations of Knowledge and Learning (FKL) and Enhanced General Education Requirements 

    The university has general education requirements for every program. Learn more from the academic catalog.

    These requirement listings are for informational purposes only and are superseded by the academic catalog for your intended term of entry. Be sure to reference the catalog for more information.

  • Curriculum

    The College of Nursing offers a BSN for registered nurses. This degree consists of 30 hours of coursework. This program of studies has been organized around the following components:

    • 15 credit hours - Core Nursing courses
    • 6 credit hours - Cluster Nursing courses (choose 1 cluster: Leadership/Management OR Patient/Staff Education OR Clinical Excellence)
    • 9 credit hours - Nursing Elective courses from any cluster
    • Additional FKL/General Education courses and state-mandated nursing requirements as needed

    Program Plan

    Course Number Course Name Credit Hours
    Semester I
    NUR 3805 Nursing as a Profession 3
    NUR 4895 Educational Role of the Nurse in Healthcare 3
    Semester II
    NUR 4828C Essentials of Healthcare Leadership and Management 3
    NUR/NSP Cluster Nursing Elective
    (from Clinical, Education, or Leadership/Management Cluster)**
    Semester III
    NUR 4169C EBP for the Baccalaureate Prepared Nurse 3
    NUR/NSP Cluster Nursing Elective
    (from Clinical, Education, or Leadership/Management Cluster)**
    Semester IV: 2 Elective Courses
    NUR/NSP General Nursing Elective
    (from any Cluster)**
    NUR/NSP General Nursing Elective
    (from any Cluster)**
    Semester V: 1 Elective Course and Final Core Course
    NUR/NSP General Nursing Elective 
    (from any Cluster)**
    NUR 4634C Population Health 3
    Total Nursing Credits 30

    Course Number Course Name Credit Hours
    Prerequisites and State Mandated Requirements
    English Composition I (Prerequisite)
    English Composition II (Prerequisite)
    Gordon Rule Math
    (if outstanding, will need prior to semester III)
    Anatomy & Physiology I
    Anatomy & Physiology II
    Chemistry, Biology, Physics, or Biochemistry*
    The Life Cycle (DEP 2004)
    Human Nutrition (HUN 2201)
    Microbiology w/Lab
    Sociology or Psychology
    USF Foundations of Knowledge and Learning
    Human & Cultural Diversity in a Global Context
    Fine Arts
    Three credit hours of the above coursework must complete Human Historical Context & Process
    Foreign Language
    Extra credits or Undistributed Credit if needed

    Total Credits 30

    *(3 semester hours) in Chemistry (CHM), Physics (PHY), Biology (BSC), or Biochemistry (BCH) 2011-2012  

    NOTE: USF Capstone and Writing Intensive Exit Requirements will be satisfied by NUR 4634C and NUR 4169

    ** Contact Academic Advisor to declare Cluster and for listing of electives.

    Sample cluster courses include:

    Course Number Course Name
    NSP 4880 Foundation of Healthcare Quality Improvement/Patient Safety
    NSP 4850 Fundamental of Health Care Finance for RNs
    Patient/Staff Education
    NSP 4148 Simulation for Nursing Practice
    Clinical Excellence
    NUR 4069 Health Assessment
    NUR 4128 Pathophysiology/Pharmacology Update for RNs
    NUR 3678 Vulnerable Populations
    NSP 4545 Substance Abuse across the Life Span (Writing Intensive)
    NUR 3286 Ethical/Legal
    NUR 4825 Healthy Aging

    Experiential Learning Hours

    The RN to BSN curriculum is designed to integrate new practice related knowledge and skills to function in the professional role as a baccalaureate-prepared nurse. Experiential Learning is a required element in three of the core courses.  Students in NUR 4828C complete their Experiential Learning hours at their place of employment if the facility approves. It is the expectation that the student would have an opportunity in this situation to gain a broader and deeper perspective of his or her own organization, as well as for the employer to have the opportunity to provide a forum for professional growth within the organization for the employee.  Additional hours are incorporated in NUR 4169C and NUR 4634C to meet student learning outcomes in Evidence Based Practice and Population Health through faculty guided experiences.

    An appropriate practicum facility allows students to complete the following tasks:
    • Organizational cultural assessment
    • Patient education project 
    • Evidence-based practice project
    • Assessment of a specific patient population using health care issues and community resources
  • Apply

    Application Process

    Interested students who meet the minimum published criteria are encouraged to apply by deadline for each term. Follow the steps below to successfully apply for the RN to BSN program (current USF students may skip step 1):

    Step 1 Submit a USF Admissions Application

    Submit a degree-seeking application to Undergraduate Admissions. For questions regarding undergraduate admissions (including USF deadlines), please call (813) 974-3350 or check the website.

    Required documentation: Submit official transcripts from every college or university attended directly to the USF Office of Undergraduate Admissions, 4202 E. Fowler Avenue, SVC1036, Tampa, FL 33620-6900. Transcripts will not be considered until they are received, opened, and processed in the system by the Undergraduate Admissions office. Please request a hard copy of your ASN transcripts to be sent to USF Undergraduate Admissions. Sending the transcript electronically may delay your admission to USF.

    Step 2 Submit a College of Nursing Application

    Once you have completed step 1, and have been admitted as an undergraduate pre-nursing student at USF, complete the College of Nursing application (SOAR). The application requires a university identification number (UID) to apply. All students receive their UID after admission to the university.

    Please note the following: If you are still completing your prerequisite coursework, have not yet graduated with your ASN degree, or have not yet received your RN license, please wait to apply through SOAR. The College of Nursing can only consider applicants who meet all the minimum criteria.

    We strongly recommend that students apply for general admission to USF Undergraduate Admissions (step 1) about two to three months before you plan to apply to the College of Nursing (step 2). It can take Undergraduate Admissions up to eight weeks to determine admission decisions. You must be accepted to USF first in order to apply directly to the College of Nursing.

    Apple users, please note: The SOAR application is not compatible with the Safari internet browser; please use Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox as an alternative.

  • Application Deadlines

    Deadlines & Orientation Dates

    All steps in the application process must be completed by 5 p.m. on the deadline for the application term.

    Term SOAR Application Open Deadline to Apply
    Spring 2020
    September 3, 2019
    November 8, 2019 @ 5 p.m.
    Summer 2020 February 3, 2020 April 3, 2020 @ 5 p.m.
    Fall 2020
    May 1, 2020
    July 3, 2020 @ 5 p.m.

    Important: The RN to BSN curriculum is designed to integrate new practice related knowledge and skills in the student’s professional role as a baccalaureate prepared nurse. Core courses include required Experiential Learning hours and students admitted to the RN to BSN major are expected to complete their practicums at their place of employment. 

    A student who is not employed as an RN has two options to choose from:
    1. Complete a practicum at a site in the Tampa Bay region assigned by the College of Nursing. 
    2. Self-identify an appropriate venue (with agreement by the College of Nursing). USF will attempt to secure an Affiliation Agreement with that identified site; however, if this agreement cannot be procured, the student will not be able to register for classes. 
  • FAQs

    1. What is the RN to BSN major?
      The RN to BSN major allows students with a completed Associate of Science in Nursing and an RN license to receive a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from USF. The major bridges the content from an AS to a BSN. Students will complete 30 hours of nursing coursework, as well as any remaining general education and state-mandated requirements. The nursing coursework for the RN to BSN major is offered entirely online. The major is designed to be completed on either a full-time or a part-time schedule. RN’s actively working in the field can complete the experiental learning requirements in their workplace. Those students not actively working as an RN must have a Florida RN license and may be able to be placed in an alternative location in the Tampa Bay area to meet project requirements.

      Students can build a degree focused on their unique career needs by selecting one of the following clusters:

      • Leadership/Management 
      • Patient/Staff Education
      • Clinical Excellence

      In general, the average RN to BSN student completes the program part-time in five semesters. New cohorts are admitted every Fall, Spring and Summer. The enrollment capacity each admissions cycle (semester) of the RN to BSN major is limited to approximately 200 students. Admission is based on meeting the prerequisite requirements of an overall GPA of 2.50 or higher on all undergraduate work (excluding NUR courses), ENC1101 & 1102 with a C or better, an active Florida RN license in good standing, and a completed Associate of Science in Nursing from a regionally accredited institution.

    2. What GPA do I need to apply?
      How competitive is admission? See our most recent admissions statistics for the RN to BSN major here. These statistics are provided for information purposes only and are intended to assist prospective students in understanding the competitive admissions processes for some of our majors. The undergraduate program is designated as limited access by the state of Florida.

    3. Are students required to do clinical experiences in the RN to BSN major?
      Experiential learning hours are a required component to the RN to BSN major; therefore, students must be able to practice in the state of Florida and are required to complete their experiential learning hours within the state of Florida. Three courses in the RN to BSN major have the experiential learning component. These experiential learning hours, in total 45 hours, can be completed at your place of employment, if the USF College of Nursing has an affiliation agreement with your employer. For students who may not be employed, or whose employer is not approved for experiential learning, our college will coordinate finding a placement for these experiential learning hours.

    4. What courses are required for admission? 
      English Composition I and II (6) – ENC 1101 and ENC 1102 (satisfied by bachelor's or associate degree)

      Students can have ENC 1102 (or equivalent) in progress when applying to the RN to Bachelor's major.

    5. Can I apply if I hold a multi-state license and my home state is part of the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact?
      The state of Florida is part of the new enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC). Please visit the Florida Board of Nursing site here to learn more about how the eNLC impacts you.