2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog

Nursing Program of Study


The TCU Nursing Program endorses the University’s mission and vision while upholding academic and practice environments that foster excellence in professional nursing. The mission of the program is to promote health by liberally educating ethical nurse leaders who provide competent, evidence-based care, and by advancing scholarship that informs the discipline and practice of nursing. The program is dedicated to professional nursing education based on a foundation of liberal arts, sciences and humanities and to the promotion of an environment that encourages lifelong learning. TCU Nursing strives to enhance the human condition by preparing graduates who think and practice as ethical leaders, and by advancing knowledge of health and human development within the global community. The program is designed to meet the needs of those seeking the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.


The faculty of TCU Nursing affirms that individuals are holistic beings who possess inherent worth. The faculty believes that the education of the professional nurse should prepare a graduate who exhibits qualities of mind and character that are necessary to live a fulfilling life, act in the public interest locally and globally, and promote health and the nursing profession. The teaching/learning process is multidimensional and interactive, involving affective, cognitive and psychomotor changes. A liberal educational foundation assists persons to think critically and to seek improvement in themselves, the profession and society. A liberal education provides the basis for the development of core competencies and knowledge of professional nursing. TCU Nursing embraces the professional values of altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity and social justice. Nursing practice, conduct and relationships are guided by professional standards and the ANA Code of Ethics for Nurses. Sound clinical judgments characterize the practice of the professional nurse in providing safe, humanistic care of individuals, families and groups in and across diverse environments.

Portions of the above are based on the Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice, published by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (2008), Washington, D.C.

Program Goals

  • Support the University's mission, vision, core values and goals
  • Prepare graduates who are competent to meet the unique, multiple and complex human health needs of a global society
  • Promote values and behaviors that encourage respect for diversity, acknowledge human worth and dignity, and support professional nursing practice
  • Foster an appreciation for the necessity of learning, thinking critically, and continuing to grow personally and professionally
  • Contribute to the nursing profession and society by engaging in scholarship, leadership and service

Nursing Degrees

TCU offers the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).

Nursing Major Admission

Each student must complete the criminal background check as required by the Texas Board of Nursing (BON) and submit proof of eligibility to take the NCLEX. Four pieces of documentation are accepted:

  1. Blue postcard from the BON stating that the criminal background check is clear
  2. An Operations Outcome Letter
  3. An Enforcement Outcome Letter
  4. An Eligibility order from the BON

TCU Continuing Students (entered TCU as a freshman; major-nursing)

Continuing TCU nursing majors should submit an intent to enroll in first nursing courses by Oct. 1 for the spring semester and Feb. 1 for the fall semester.

Change of Major Students (entered TCU as a freshman; major other than nursing)

A TCU student may change to the nursing major if he or she has completed two semesters of coursework at TCU and has a 2.5 TCU cumulative GPA. It is strongly recommended that the change of major be completed as soon as possible, but at least one semester prior to the first semester of nursing courses. Change of major requests must be completed by April 1. Students who enter nursing after the first semester of their freshman year may only begin the nursing program during a fall semester and will be on a 4 1/2 year plan of study. 

Transfer Students (out of high school at least one full semester and attempted college or university work elsewhere for credit)

Transfer applicants use Nursing CAS (Centralized Application Service for Nursing Programs). The deadline for application for initial entry into nursing courses by transfer students is Feb. 1 for the fall semester. Admission Assessment (A2) scores are required with the application. Transfer applicants are advised to contact TCU Nursing as early as possible in the application process.

The number of transfer students admitted to nursing courses is determined by the availability of faculty, facilities and the number of qualified continuing TCU students. Selection of transfer students for initial entry into nursing courses is based on indicators of the applicant's likelihood of success in the program and in professional practice.

Transfer students may not pursue a nursing major at TCU if they have been enrolled in another nursing program and were not in good standing upon exit or are not admissible to the previous program(s). All transfer student applicants who have been previously enrolled in a nursing program must submit a letter from the dean or director of that program indicating eligibility status for readmission.

Additional Bachelor Degrees

A student with a previous undergraduate degree from TCU must meet the same enrollment requirements as other TCU students. A student with a bachelor's degree from another university is considered a transfer student.

Accelerated BSN for Non-Nurse College Graduates

TCU Nursing offers an accelerated BSN track. Applicants with a bachelor's degree must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher in their first degree or their science prerequisites. Applicants without a bachelor's degree must have a GPA of 3.5 or higher in their current coursework or science prerequisites. Pathophysiology is a prerequisite for entry into the accelerated nursing track. The 16-month course of study is full time with coursework beginning in August of each year. Admission is competitive based on academic record, entrance exam scores and completion of all prerequisite courses and core curriculum. Students must also comply with other admission requirements listed above. Those interested should contact TCU Nursing for admission requirements unique to this program.

Nursing Re-enrollment

A student who has been a nursing major and leaves TCU must apply for re-enrollment after an absence of a full fall or spring semester. If the student meets enrollment criteria, the Office of the Registrar will contact TCU Nursing to receive approval for the student to re-enroll as a nursing major. The student must meet the requirements for graduation based on the published TCU catalog at the time of re-entry into the nursing major. Re-entering students may be required to pass comprehensive mastery exam(s). Re-enrollment is dependent on clinical space availability in practicum courses.

Nursing Major Progression Policies (after enrollment in practicum)

Students must have a TCU cumulative GPA of 2.5 to progress to the next semester of practicum coursework.

Students may repeat one nursing course if less than a "C" or a no-credit (NC) grade is earned.

Students are discontinued from the major if grades of "C-", "D," "F" or "NC" are earned in two or more nursing courses (excluding NURS 10303).

Students may be discontinued from the nursing major if their academic, practicum or personal performance is determined to be inconsistent with professional responsibility and accountability. In rare instances, the safety of patients may necessitate removing a student from a practicum and/or the nursing program. Faculty members are responsible for recommending this action to the director of undergraduate student and clinical affairs when indicated.

As a minimum requirement for participating in a practicum, a student's performance must be in compliance with Nursing Scope and Standards of Practice published by the ANA, and the Texas Board of Nursing Rules and Regulations, including "not accepting an assignment when one's physical or emotional condition prevents the safe and effective delivery of care." When in the opinion of the instructor a student is not prepared for the educational activity or is in violation of these rules for any reason- including but not limited to, impairment by reasons of alcohol and/or drug abuse- the student is dismissed from practicum for the day. The instructor may recommend further action to the director of undergraduate student and clinical affairs.

Requirements for Graduation

For the Bachelor of Science in Nursing, a student must have:

  • 2.0 cumulative GPA for all coursework completed at TCU
  • Completed 124 credits including all nursing courses required for the major with grades of "C" or higher or "P"
  • Completed all core curriculum requirements

Multiple Majors

Nursing students, with the approval of appropriate academic deans, may pursue an additional major concurrent with nursing. Such students must declare nursing as the first major and complete all degree requirements for both nursing and the additional major. Students interested in this option are encouraged to meet with advisers from both majors to develop an academic plan.

Computer Requirement

For all computer-based assessments, students are required to bring a Windows or Apple laptop that meets the software requirements of www.examsoft.com and TCU’s learning management system.

Fees and Other Expenses

Each clinical course carries a laboratory fee. Fees are charged for testing and academic resources per semester. All students planning licensure as a registered nurse in Texas are required to submit the required fee directly to the Board of Nursing and to the national company, which administers the test during the last semester of nursing coursework. Purchase of uniforms at the TCU bookstore is required. Professional liability insurance is required each year the student is enrolled in practicum coursework. Students are responsible for the cost of the urine drug screen and the criminal background check.


Limited city bus service is available for transportation to some practicum facilities. Plans should be made for the use of a car beginning with the first practicum nursing course.


Students may be employed on or off campus, as opportunities are available and the course load and schedule permits. Work schedules should allow sufficient time for study. Because nursing is a demanding academic major, students are cautioned to carefully balance the number of work hours with course requirements. Students employed in clinical agencies may not wear the  TCU Nursing name tag or uniform during such employment. Students who are employed in a clinical setting must not sign their names as nursing students.

Health Professions Learning Center

The Health Professions Learning Center in the Annie Richardson Bass Building is available to nursing students to enhance independent learning and as a simulation and basic care lab for mastering clinical skills. In the Learning Center, students become active participants in an environment that facilitates both individual and small-group learning situations.

Testing Program

Students are required throughout the program to complete computer-based standardized achievement tests. Results of these tests provide a basis for review of individual achievement as well as program effectiveness.

Honors College

Nursing majors who plan to pursue departmental honors must be members of the Honors College and are advised carefully for such achievement. TCU Nursing supports and encourages participation in the Honors College.

Nursing Scholarships and Grants

A variety of scholarships and grants are available. Applications are made through the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

Nursing Student Organization

The Texas Nursing Student Association and the National Student Nurses' Association provide an opportunity to participate in local, state and national affairs. These organizations are concerned with the role of the nursing student, the role of the nurse in the community, and the future of nursing. Meetings take place throughout the semester, and regional meetings may be attended each semester. Participation is strongly encouraged.

Sigma Theta Tau International

Since 1970 the Beta Alpha Chapter of the International Honor Society for Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau, has selected members on the basis of academic merit. Qualified students are invited to join during their junior or senior years.