Plan of Study

BSN traditional track degree requirements and curriculum

To earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree on the traditional track, you must complete 120 credit hours of coursework in three areas: prenursing coursework, nursing core courses, and general electives.

Map out your degree

You can use Indiana University’s iGPS tool to explore the degree requirements for the BSN traditional track, plan your coursework, and monitor your progress toward your degree.

View the BSN degree map

Prenursing coursework (29–31 credit hours)

To be eligible to apply to the BSN traditional track, you must complete between 29 and 31 hours of prenursing coursework by the end of the spring semester of your freshman year. Prenursing coursework includes courses that fulfill IU Bloomington’s General Education (GenEd) requirements, which all IU students must meet in order to earn a bachelor’s degree, as well as specific courses that are required for your application to the BSN program.

Learn about prenursing coursework

Nursing core courses (75 credit hours)

The heart of the BSN curriculum consists of the nursing core courses, which include lecture, laboratory, and clinical experiences. The nursing core is made up of 19 course topics that total 75 credit hours.

You will begin taking nursing core courses during your third semester at IU, after you have been admitted to the BSN program. 

  • Semesters 3–4
    NURS-B 234 Promoting Healthy Populations (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course focuses on preventative health care and health promotion in individuals, families, and communities, considering the influence of culture and lifespan development. Using biophysical, environmental, sociocultural and economic determinants of health, students focus on improving health outcomes with individuals, families, and communities.
    NURS-B 235 Promoting Healthy Populations Practicum (1 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) Students assess individuals, families, and communities, providing needed education, preventative services, and support. Students provide individual and population based care in community based settings, giving consideration to the perspective of those being served.
    NURS-B 244 Comprehensive Health Assessment (2 cr.)
    (Traditional / Accelerated) This course focuses on helping students acquire skills to conduct a comprehensive health assessment, including the physical, psychological, social, functional, and environmental aspects of health. The process of data collection, interpretation, documentation, and dissemination of assessment data will be addressed.
    NURS-B 245 Comprehensive Health Assessment: Practicum (2 cr.)
    (Traditional/Accelerated) Students will have the opportunity to use techniques of interview, observation, percussion, palpation, inspection, and auscultation in assessing clients across the life span in simulated and actual environments.
    NURS-B 253 Professionalism in Collaborative Practice (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated)Students practice communication skills for working with health team members and clients, including self-awareness, interpersonal communication, team skills, and technological communication. Students are introduced to the scope and standards of nursing practice, roles of health team members, and components of professional practice. Students are introduced to leadership and ethical standards.
    NURS-B 260 Fundamentals of Nursing Practice (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course focuses on the fundamentals of nursing from a theoretical, evidence base. Students will gain a knowledge base for, and have an opportunity to apply, fundamental nursing concepts, skills and the nursing process. The evidence based knowledge gained forms a basis for clinical reasoning and decision making as students develop their nursing skills.
    NURS-B 261 Pathophysiology and Pharmacology for Nursing Practice (4 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course provides a foundation in the pathophysiology of key disease processes and pharmacological therapies. Principles of pathophysiology and pharmacology are presented in an integrated manner to provide a basis for study of selected medications that are used to treat or manage diseases with an application to nursing practice.
    NURS-L 230 Health Care Delivery Systems (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) Students examine health care delivery systems, leadership, health policy, regulation and economics. Students explore quality practices of health care organizations. Students analyze the impact of informatics on health care and nursing including the electronic health record, information technology in healthcare, and information literacy.
  • Semesters 5–6
    NURS-B 334 Transitional Care of Families and Populations (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) Using the childbearing family as an extensive exemplar, this course focuses on family and community health: community assessment, epidemiology, and intervention with individuals, families, communities and populations. Students address prenatal care, normal and high risk pregnancy and childbirth, newborn care, genetic counseling, care coordination, complementary care, and environmental health.
    NURS-H 355 Data Analysis for Practice and Research (3 cr.)
    (Traditional/Accelerated) This course introduces nursing and other health sciences students to the basic concepts and techniques of data analysis needed in professional health-care practice. Principles of measurement, data summarization, and univariate and bivariate statistics are examined. Differences in types of qualitative data and methods by which these types of data can be interpreted are also explored. Emphasis is placed on the application of fundamental concepts to real-world situations in client care.
    NURS-H 356 Clinical Nursing Care 1: Biophysical Processes (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course focuses on providing nursing care for individuals and families with acute and chronic biophysical illnesses across the lifespan. Particular attention is focused on developing clinical reasoning and competent nursing practice at a beginning level.
    NURS-H 360 Clinical Nursing Care 2: Interactive Processes (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course focuses on nursing care management of individuals and families experiencing acute and chronic health problems related to interaction with the environment and others: sensory, motor, cognitive, affective, and interpersonal processes. Using a holistic approach this course addresses health problems occurring across the lifespan.
    NURS-H 371 Clinical Nursing Care 3: Adaptive Processes (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course builds on Biophysical Processes. The primary focus is on the nursing care management of individuals and families experiencing acute and chronic health problems using an adaptive and holistic approach. Particular attention is focused on developing clinical reasoning and competent nursing practice at an intermediate level.
    NURS-R 375 Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated). This course focuses on nursing research and evidence-based practice. Students develop skills in retrieving and appraising literature relevant to clinical problems, understanding the research process, and critiquing evidence from research publications and other sources to inform evidence-based nursing practice.
  • Semesters 7–8
    NURS-B 444 Managing Health and Illness across Care Environments (4 cr.)
    Students study a focused clinical area of concern for nursing, exploring the ways in which culture, health disparity, transitions between care environments, and health policy impact care for an aggregate, population, or specialty. Immersed in a care environment, students gain relevant clinical knowledge as well as an understanding of the aggregate health concerns. (clarification note: there may be times when this is offered in the summer for some students, as for international programs, and so the prerequisite listing is more lenient.)
    NURS-B 453 Inter professional Practice (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) Students engage with inter professional colleagues in seminar, simulation, and practice settings, focusing on effective nursing practice and inter professional communication skills including self-awareness, interpersonal communication, conflict resolution, team skills, and technological communication. Students hone leadership, professionalism, and ethical competencies in preparation for practice. (Clarification note: the placement of this course varies between 7th and 8th semester by BSN Track)
    NURS-H 476 Clinical Nursing Care 4: Complex Processes (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) The primary focus is on the nursing care management of individuals and families experiencing complex and significant illnesses across the lifespan. Particular attention is focused on developing clinical reasoning and competent nursing practice at an advanced level.
    NURS-L 430 Leadership in Healthcare Delivery and Policy (5 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course focuses on development of effective leadership skills relevant in health care systems. Students examine health policy, information management, and processes that result in exceptional organizational outcomes. Students use healthcare data and research evidence in quality improvement and change initiatives.
    NURS-S 474 Applied Health-Care Ethics (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) This course is designed to introduce the student to major ethical theory, principles, and models for the recognition, analysis, and resolution of ethical dilemmas in health-care practice.
    NURS-S 483 Clinical Nursing Practice Capstone (3 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated) Students will have the opportunity to demonstrate competencies consistent with program outcomes and to refine their nursing care practice skills. Students will collaborate with faculty and a preceptor in choosing a care setting, planning and organizing a learning experience, and practicing professional nursing in a safe and effective manner.
    NURS-S 488 Nursing Synthesis (2 cr.)
    (Traditional, Accelerated). Students integrate knowledge and skills acquired throughout the program: critical thinking, information technology, cultural competence, care coordination, leadership, collaboration, and communication skills. Students demonstrate competence in evidence-based practice and quality and safety initiatives, as achieved in a complex and changing health care environment. Students begin the transition to professional practice.
  • Honors courses
    • HON-H 399 Honors Colloquium (3 cr.)
    • HON-H 499 Honors Senior Thesis (1 cr.)

General electives (1 credit hour)

You must take a 1 credit hour elective to complete the 120 credit hours of coursework required for the BSN traditional track. You may choose any course offered by IU to fulfill this requirement; however, you may not take the course as pass/fail.