nursing student taking someone's blood pressure

Become an Outstanding Registered Nurse

You want to be a nurse and care for people who are ill or injured. You're also interested in wellness, in helping people avoid and prevent health issues. Nursing is an art and a science. Taking care of patients—and the loved ones who collaborate in their care—can be challenging. You'll need to able to think on your feet as part of a busy team.

In IUP‘s highly regarded Nursing BS program, you'll prepare to become a confident, highly skilled, and compassionate nurse who's focused on both the health and wellness of your patients.

Why Major in Nursing at IUP?

When you earn your nursing degree at IUP, you become part of a community that has a high track record of success. We're proud to report that 91 percent of our graduates pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for Registered Nurses—and they pass the first time they take it.

When employers see that you graduated from IUP with a BS in Nursing, they immediately know you studied at a top school. Nursing Schools Almanac ranked IUP's nursing program as

  • One of the "best prelicensure Bachelor in Nursing (BSN) programs in the state."
  • Eighth in the state in its 2021 comprehensive review of Pennsylvania programs. 

The baccalaureate degree program in nursing at IUP is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Imagine Your Future

Your IUP nursing education will give you many opportunities for career growth and satisfaction—and you'll have the confidence employers and patients want to see.

With your BSN, you'll be in demand for interesting, well-paid positions in hospitals and acute care settings. You can choose to work in areas such as:

  • Critical care
  • Emergency/trauma centers
  • Medical-surgical
  • Obstetrics
  • Oncology
  • Pediatrics
  • Psychology/mental health

If you'd rather serve in community care settings, you'll have plenty of options. Graduates of IUP's nursing degree program have been hired to work in:

  • Dialysis
  • Emergency shelters
  • Forensic and prison health services/facilities
  • Home healthcare
  • Long-term care
  • Public health
  • School health centers

Prepare for Graduate and Advanced Practice Education

Thinking about becoming a nurse educator or nurse administrator? You're on the right track. The IUP nursing program gives you the solid academic foundation you need to go on to graduate school.

You'll also have the credentials to further your education in advanced practice nursing. These roles include secure and well-paid specialties, such as:

  • Certified nurse midwife (CNM)
  • Certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Clinical nurse specialist (CNS)
  • Nurse practitioner (NP)

Registered Nurse

2021 Median Salary per year

$77,600

Classes and Requirements

Your nursing professors want you to do well. You’ll work closely with them to develop the foundation you need to be successful at a patient’s bedside, in graduate-level education, and in leadership roles.

IUP's bachelor’s in nursing degree program is comprehensive. As a nursing student, your coursework and clinical experience will prepare you to:

  • Communicate effectively with clients, families, communities, and health care professionals to deliver safe, quality healthcare.
  • Provide safe nursing care across the lifespan.
  • Practice within the professional code of nursing ethics.
  • Thrive as a member of the healthcare team.
  • Use scientific principles to plan, implement, and evaluate healthcare.
  • Integrate information and technology.
  • Assume leadership roles that advocate for the client and profession.
  • Demonstrate the professional standards of moral, ethical, and legal conduct.

After you graduate, you will then apply to the PA State Board of Nursing or another board of nursing for authorization to take the NCLEX-RN exam. Upon successful completion of the NCLEX-RN exam, you will then receive a license from the state board of nursing that you applied to.

Students spend the first year taking required science and liberal studies courses.

Nursing courses and clinicals begin in the first semester of the sophomore year.

Clinical sites utilized include a variety of agencies within approximately a 60-mile radius of Indiana, Pennsylvania. Students are enrolled in clinical practice in areas such as hospitals/acute care settings, community/home health care settings, and schools.

IUP affiliates include

  • Indiana Regional Medical Center
  • Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center
  • Penn Highlands DuBois
  • Excela Health Latrobe
  • Excela Health Westmoreland
  • UPMC
  • West Penn Hospital
  • Windber Hospital
  • Armstrong Hospital
  • Concordia
  • Beacon Ridge
  • St. Andrew’s Village
  • Scenery Hill
  • And other facilities in the area

Full Academic Catalog Listing

The course catalog is the official reference for all our degree and course offerings. Check it out for a full listing of the classes available and requirements for this degree.

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Student Organizations for Nursing Majors

At IUP, your undergraduate nursing education goes far beyond the classroom and clinical location. Take advantage of the learning and networking—and fun—you'll experience as part of these student organizations:

Sigma Theta Tau-International Honor Society of Nursing and the Zeta Lambda Chapter

This organization supports the learning, knowledge, and professional development of nurses committed to making a difference in health worldwide.

Student Nurses Association of Pennsylvania (SNAP)

As a member, you'll have opportunities to be involved in current legislative nursing issues, social and service projects, informative programs, and networking with nursing majors across the state and country.

Alpha Tau Delta (ATD)

Join and receive all the benefits of membership in a national fraternity for nurses that promotes academic, professional, and social growth.

Nurses Christian Fellowship (NCF)

If nursing is part of your spiritual path, consider joining the NCF. NCF is a professional organization and ministry for nurses and nursing students.

American Assembly for Men in Nursing (AAMN)

As a man pursuing the nursing profession, you might want to join the AAMN. The mission of this organization is to provide a framework for nurses, as a group, to meet, discuss, and influence factors that affect men as nurses.

Class Officers

Want to develop your leadership skills? Run for class office and take responsibility for planning and organizing group activities and fundraising projects.

Student Advisory Committee

Attending Student Advisory meetings, and maybe even serving as an elected voting member, is another way to stay on top of issues that affect students in the nursing program and other majors.

Guide, Coach, Cheerleader: Your Academic Advisor

Enrolling in a nursing degree program is a big step—one of many that will take you from today to a long and rewarding career.

Your IUP nursing academic advisor will be with you every step of the way.

Class Registration Schedule

Ready to start planning for your first semester as an IUP nursing student? Here's what you need to know.

  • Registration for spring semester begins in mid-October.
  • Registration for fall semester and summer sessions begins in mid-March.

Schedules are usually posted several weeks before the registration period begins.

Early Registration for Science Classes

Each semester, a certain number of nursing students can register early so they may enroll in the science courses they need. Be sure to take advantage of this opportunity to get the best schedule possible.

Academic Advisor Meetings

Your nursing advisor is here to help you make progress and get the best class and clinical schedule possible. As a nursing student, you are required to schedule an appointment to meet with your advisor each semester. During the meeting, your advisor will give you a Personal Identification Number (PIN)—you'll need this to log in to the registration system.

Advisor appointment schedules are sent to your IUP email account in mid-February and mid-September.

Use Your Student Email for All IUP Communication

While you are a nursing major, you'll use an official IUP email account for all IUP student communication. Your faculty, advisor, department chair, registrar, and other staff members will contact you only via your IUP email account. Be sure to check this email inbox frequently.

Need help with your IUP email? Contact the university’s IT Support Center.

Check Out the IUP Nursing Newsletter

Read about information that affects you during your nursing student years—and after you start your career.

The IUP nursing newsletter will be sent to your IUP email account.

Clinical Experiences for IUP Nursing Majors

Hands-on experience is an important part of your undergraduate nursing education. IUP has partnered with a wide variety of healthcare facilities so you can gain valuable clinical experience.

During your clinical experience, you are responsible for:

  • Transportation to and from clinical experiences.
  • Any fees related to the clinical experience, such a lab kits, uniforms, etc.
  • Any fees for meeting clinical facility requirements.

Requirements for Students at Clinical Facilities

As a student in IUP's nursing program, you must meet certain requirements before starting your clinical experiences. Some of these requirements include:

  • Criminal background checks
  • Drug testing
  • Immunization records
  • Proof of health insurance
  • Proof of immunity
  • Proof of liability insurance
  • Vaccinations

Specific facilities may list additional requirements. You are responsible for making sure you have met all requirements before your clinical experience begins.

At the completion of the nursing program, students are responsible for fees related to NCLEX-RN exam and licensure.

SAT and GPA Requirements for Admission

Ready to apply to IUP's BS in Nursing program? You'll need:

  • A minimum SAT score of 1030 (Mathematics and Critical Reading sections only)
  • A minimum cumulative high school GPA of 3.25

Want details about the application process? Visit Undergraduate Admissions 

Living-Learning Communities

When you're in the nursing program, you can join students enrolled in the Medical Technology, Respiratory Care, and Medical Imaging programs in a living-learning community in the Suites on Maple East.

Choosing to reside in this living-learning community gives you time to spend with students who have similar interests and similar curriculum requirements.

Student Information Handbook

College life. Organizations to join. Facilities to use and enjoy. You'll find everything you need to know in the Student Information Handbook.

Be sure to review the pages explaining policies on professional behavior and clinical requirements.

Build Your Skills in Simulation Laboratories

Your competence and confidence in the patient care setting come from practice.

To help you get that practice, IUP has built state-of-the-art simulation laboratories for nursing majors to use to hone their skills.

These innovative laboratories allow you to:

  • Practice using healthcare equipment.
  • Get hands-on training in using electronic medical records.
  • Collaborate with IUP's theater students, who use their acting talents to portray patients and other roles in diverse healthcare situations.

IUP Students Who Want to Change Their Major to Nursing

If you're a current IUP student ready to switch your major to nursing, here are the details you need to know.

The minimum requirements to be considered for a seat in the nursing program are:

  • 3.0 cumulative GPA at the end of the semester.
  • 24 credits completed; 12 of these credits must be completed at IUP.
  • A minimum grade of a C in the following required courses:
    • BIOL 150 Human Anatomy
    • CHEM 103 Introduction to Chemistry for Health Sciences and CHEM 225
      or
      CHEM 101 College Chemistry I and CHEM 102 College Chemistry II
      or
      CHEM 111 General Chemistry I and CHEM 112 General Chemistry II
  • First-semester freshmen are not eligible to apply.

The number of students accepted is based on the seats available. Apply to change your major during the semester you plan to finish the minimum requirements.

Have questions? Contact Katie Rowe (krowe@iup.edu) in the Nursing Department or 724-357-2558.

Advanced Placement for Students with a Bachelor's Degree

If you are enrolling in the nursing program as a second bachelor's degree, you may be admitted to IUP with advanced placement. To earn the BS in Nursing degree, you'll need to meet the major requirements for graduation detailed here.

You must have completed the following courses with a minimum grade of a C:

  • BIOL 150 Human Anatomy
  • CHEM 101 College Chemistry I
  • CHEM 102 College Chemistry II
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Human Physiology
  • Introduction to Medical Microbiology

For details about the application process, contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office.

You are also welcome to contact the Nursing Department chairperson during your application process. The department chair can help you plan which classes to take and when as you work to earn your second bachelor's degree–and launch a rewarding nursing career.

Coursework at Another College or University

You want to take courses during the summer at another college or university. We think that's a smart plan.

Studying, learning, and earning credits during the summer means you can take a lighter course load during the academic year, pursue a special area of interest, or stay on track for the clinical year.

Before you enroll: Make sure your summer class will transfer to your IUP transcript.

Follow these steps before you register for classes at other schools:

  • Meet with your advisor to discuss options.
  • Use the Online Credit Evaluation System to check course equivalency.
  • Contact the other college or university for details about schedules, registration, tuition, etc.
  • Submit an Application for Pre-Approval of Coursework at Another College or University.
  • Earn a grade of C or higher to have credits posted to your IUP transcript.
  • Ask the college or university to send an official transcript to IUP Admissions Office, Credit Evaluation, Sutton Hall, Room 117, 1011 South Drive, IUP, Indiana, PA 15705.

Do you plan to complete Human Anatomy (BIOL 150) and/or Human Physiology (BIOL 240) at another college or university? Be sure to check with your advisor first to make sure the courses are equivalent to the IUP courses.

  • Many colleges and universities offer these courses as Anatomy and Physiology I and II. If so, you must complete both I and II at that college or university to have the courses posted to your IUP transcript as BIOL 150 and BIOL 240.

Process for IUP Nursing Graduation

You've worked hard, and it's almost time to start your career. First, you need to plan your graduation. Here are the steps to follow.

Apply for graduation in the next-to-final semester of your enrollment:

  • Deadline for May grads: November 15
  • Deadline for August grads: April 1
  • Deadline for December grads: April 1

Go to "Salute to Grads" at the Co-op Store:

  • Students may purchase/order robes/regalia.
  • For detailed information, visit the Salute to Grads web page.

Be sure to get your composite picture taken:

  • This photo is organized by the senior class president and the senior class advisor.
  • You'll receive an email with details during the fall semester.

Attend a meeting with the Nursing Department chairperson for information about licensure and applying for the NCLEX-RN exam.

If required, schedule A Cognitive Approach to Clinical Problem Solving (NURS 450) class in your final semester of study at IUP.