Nursing Major - Undergraduate Degree Program | Briar Cliff University

Nursing Program

Degree Type: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Program(s) Offered: Major only

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is the most desired credential in health care today. And at Briar Cliff, we've been preparing some of the region's most committed nurses for generations.

Hands-on experience.

Get experience where it counts most — in the field! In our program, you’ll get over 800 hours of clinical practice in hospitals, community health agencies, long-term care facilities and other community based settings.

State-of-the-art labs.

Our renovated simulation, chemistry and biology laboratories are unparalleled by any undergraduate institution our size. You could also get to work in one of the region’s only working educational cadaver labs!

Advance your degree.

Briar Cliff is the only place in Western Iowa where you can start as an undergraduate and work all the way up to a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) — all at the same school! Or, you can also pursue a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with tracks to become a nurse practitioner.

A tradition of excellence.

CCNE Accredited

From our founding as a women's college in 1930 to the evolution of our highly sought online and graduate nursing degrees, Briar Cliff has always been passionate about nursing. Here, you'll learn from faculty who are all active in clinical practice and connected to professional nursing organizations.

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate and the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs at Briar Cliff University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. All BCU nursing programs are approved by the Iowa Board of Nursing and meet the state educational requirements for licensure in the state of Iowa*. 

All graduates of our accredited pre-licensure BSN program are eligible to take the national licensing exam (NCLEX) in the state of their choice. Completion of the BSN degree following licensure as an RN (RN to BSN program) does not lead to additional licensure.

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Nursing Program Courses

BIOL 221 - Human Anatomy & Physiology I

A study of the structure of the human body at the four structural levels (cells, tissues, organs and systems) and the relationship of its parts. Three lectures, one lab per week. Read more »

BIOL 222 - Human Anatomy & Physiology II

A study of the functions of the cells and organ systems of the human body. Three lectures, one lab per week. Read more »

BIOL 240 - Nutrition

A survey of the principles of nutrition and their application to normal conditions of growth and development. Includes food groups, nutrient requirements, energy metabolism, composition and safety of foods, nutritional needs for the different life stages, and application of nutrition to health care and sports. Read more »

BIOL 339 - Microbiology

An in-depth study of microorganisms, including ultra-structure, growth characteristics, metabolism and genetics. Three lectures, two labs per week. Prerequisite: eight hours of chemistry or permission of the instructor. Read more »

BIOL 340 - Pathophysiology

An introduction to the biochemical, cellular, physiologic and biologic manifestations of disease. Includes alterations in normal function, disruptions in homeostatic mechanisms and adaptations of body systems to disease processes. Read more »

CHEM 109 - Chemistry for the Health Sciences I

A study of the principles of general chemistry with emphasis on those topics of interest to students of the health sciences. The course includes a lab component with experiments that complement topics covered in lecture. This course is not a preparation for higher level courses in chemistry, other than CHEM 110. Read more »

MATH 200 - Elementary Statistics

An introduction to the theory and applications of statistics intended for students in business, nursing and the social sciences, but also recommended for students in the liberal arts. Topics include measures of central tendency and variability, probability distributions, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, linear regression, correlation, analysis of variance and nonparametric statistics. This course is not open to those in a mathematics major. Prerequisite: MATH 10 or recommendation of the department chairperson based upon mathematics assessment Read more »

NURS 300 - Evidence-Based Nursing Practice

This course focuses on the utilization of evidence in nursing practice. Read more »

NURS 302 - Foundational Nursing Concepts

Foundational Nursing Concepts provides an introduction to the scientific and theoretical concepts in nursing practice. Concepts: Health, Patient-Profile, Professional Nursing, and Health Care Concepts of the individual will be introduced. Prerequisite: Acceptance into major Read more »

NURS 312 - Concepts for Beginning Nursing Practice

This course provides the initial theoretical basis for the application of the nursing process in caring for the individual across the life-span. Read more »

NURS 322 - Health Assessment

An introductory course in nursing health assessment. Students will be presented with knowledge, and skills applicable to the practice of professional nursing. The emphasis of the course will be on the relationship between the nursing process and health assessment skills at various stages of life span development. Prerequisite: acceptance into major. Read more »

NURS 332 - Concepts for Reproduction and Sexuality

This course provides the theoretical basis for the concepts of reproduction and sexuality. Read more »

NURS 360 - Concepts for Intermediate Nursing Practice I

This course focuses on the enhanced application of the nursing process in caring for the individual across the life-span. Read more »

NURS 365 - Pediatric Growth and Development

This course focuses on the concepts of growth and development. Didactic and clinical experiences emphasize the stages of pediatric development. Read more »

NURS 370 - Concepts for Intermediate Nursing Practice II

This course focuses on the enhanced application of the nursing process in caring for the individual across the life-span. Read more »

NURS 400 - Psychosocial Concepts of Nursing Practice

This course focuses on the enhanced application of the nursing process in caring for the individual across the life-span. Read more »

NURS 402 - Nursing Practice in the Community

This course focuses on applying nursing concepts to promote, preserve and maintain population health. Didactic and clinical experiences immerse the learner in a variety of population health settings. Read more »

NURS 460 - Nursing Leadership & Management

This course focuses on theories and concepts of clinical decision making, leadership, management, and the change process in relationship to the application of the nursing process in various health care settings. Read more »

NURS 465 - Nursing Preceptorship Experience

This course focuses on preparing the graduate nursing student for practice as a Registered Nurse. The learner will integrate all previous didactic, pharmacological and laboratory experiences into clinical application. Read more »

NURS 475 - Transition into Professional Nursing

Provides graduating basic and L.P.N.-B.S.N. seniors an opportunity to prepare for securing their first professional nursing position, writing the NCLEX examination, and practicing in their first nursing position. Emphasis is placed on life-long learning, personal and professional development, leadership, and integrating values and ethics in decision making. Read more »

NURS 480 - Concepts for Complex Nursing Practice

This course focuses on the enhanced application of the nursing process in caring for the individual across the life-span. Didactic and clinical experiences expand on the provision of nursing practice and the use of pharmacological agents related to the complex and interrelated aspects of the concepts within: Health, Patient-Profile, Professional Nursing, and Health Care. Students also must maintain CPR for BLS Provider certification and Child and Adult Abuse Mandatory Reporter training throughout the program. Read more »

PHYS 107 - Astronomy

A descriptive astronomy course at a low mathematical level. Recommended for non-science majors. Topics covered include the motion of the stars and planets, the solar system, tools and methods of astronomy, stars, stellar evolution, galaxies, and cosmology. Three lectures, no lab. Read more »

PSYC 110 - Introduction to Psychology

This course is an introduction to fundamental psychological concepts which are derived from applying the scientific method to the study of behavior. Examples of selected topics include: personality development, abnormal behavior and therapy, physiology, motivation and emotions, human development, learning and memory, and social behavior. This course emphasizes theories and theorists as well as relevant applications to everyday living. An introduction to APA style of writing is included. Read more »

PSYC 280 - Developmental Psychology

This course focuses on the development of an individual from conception to death. Psychological/physiological growth is studied in terms of cognitive, psychosocial, moral, psychosexual, and thanotological developmental stage theories. A minimum of one behavioral observation and a journal research report written in APA style will be required. Prerequisite: PSYC 110 • Fall, Spring Read more »

PSYC 360 - Abnormal Psychology

A study of the classification of variant behavior and hypotheses used to explain such behavior. The symptoms, dynamics, treatment, and prognosis of various behavior syndromes will also be considered. Prerequisite: PSYC 110 Read more »

SOCY 124 - Principles of Sociology

Introduction to the field of sociology and its theories, concepts and research methods. Main topics are culture, the family, socialization, deviance, social stratification, race relations, gender, and economic and political globalization. Read more »

Additional Program Requirements

  Upon admission, all students are required to sign and adhere to the Professional Conduct Standard.

  Documentation of physical health status must be obtained upon admission to the nursing major. Required immunizations include:

  • Hepatitis B vaccination (or signed waiver on file).
  • An annual Mantoux test.
  • A second MMR if born after 1957.
  • Proof of Varicella immunity if born after 1965 (either a positive titre or proof of a series of two immunizations and an annual influenza immunization).
  • Annual seasonal influenza vaccination.

  Students also must maintain basic CPR certification throughout the program. In addition, students must have a criminal background check completed through the vendor selected by the Department of Nursing.

 For additional requirements and curriculum information, download the latest University academic catalog.

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