BSN Programs in Iowa


There are a little more than a dozen different nursing schools in Iowa that are in our database and have Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing programs.

The Iowa Health System is a major employer of nurses throughout the state, with hospital locations in nearly all of the major cities such as Des Moines, Davenport, and Cedar Rapids.

Below are some featured online BSN or BS of healthcare programs, which you can get in touch with directly by clicking the “MORE INFO” button. These programs are currently accepting applicants and are 100% online. Following our featured list is the entire list of all nursing schools in Iowa.

Full List of BSN Programs in Iowa

Featured BSN programs accepting Iowa applicants
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Campus-based programs in Iowa

Allen College
1900 Heath St, Waterloo, IA 50703
Allen offers an upper division baccalaureate nursing program designed for pre-licensure students. The program is designed for students who have completed all 57 required prerequisites courses. Allen does not offer lower division courses and as such, students must complete these at accredited colleges or universities prior to transfer.

On the same note, the college has two admission methods: guaranteed enrollment for high school students and the transfer option.  The high school admission also known as early admission is for students who ranked in the top 20% of their high school graduating class in addition to having an ACT score of 25 or higher and a GPA of 3.0 or better.  For this, all general education requirements admission requirements must be met to ensure progression into the 5-semester major at Allen. Transfer applicants without early enrollment status must have a GPA of 2.7 in prerequisites and earn a minimum of grade “C” in those courses. A 7-semester part time option is available for students who have completed all required prerequisite courses

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Briar Cliff University

3303 Rebecca St, Sioux City, IA 51104

The basic BSN option at BCU prepares students with general education, liberal arts and nursing courses. First, students seek admission in the university and take all general education requirements for baccalaureate programs. Upon completion of core courses usually after the 1st year, and earning a college cumulative GPA of 2.75, students may then apply to the department of nursing for the major.  Nursing courses start as early as the sophomore year and progress for 3 years.  Admission to take nursing and clinical courses happens once annually in the fall semester.  BCU students can apply for a number of private scholarships dedicated nursing students.  Besides the usual curriculum, bright students can apply for induction in the Theta Gamma chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International to nature their scholastic prospects.

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Clarke University

1550 Clarke Dr, Dubuque, IA 52001

The pre-licensure BSN track requires that students be admitted into the university prior to being admitted in the major. Freshmen should then complete at least 30 semester hours of university general coursework including chemistry and 6 hours in social sciences before applying to the major. Such prerequisites and co-requisites courses must be completed with a GPA of 2.75 or better to be eligible to apply to the major. CPR and CNA certificates are mandatory for candidates applying for the major in addition to an interview with a member of faculty. Clark University also sponsors the Rho Eta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International to promote scholastic ambitions of highly performing students.  Starting a freshman, students take 4-years to complete the program.

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Coe College

1220 First Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402

General university admission is the first step in bidding for the generic BS in nursing program at Coe. Freshman should seek admission to take non-nursing electives and general education requirements.  Basically, these are reserved for the freshman and sophomore years. By the end of the sophomore year, students that have completed the above courses with a cumulative GPA of 2.7 become eligible to apply to the major. While out-of-Coe credits are accepted, students who complete majority of the pre-nursing curriculum are given priority over transfer cases. Applicants with a GPA lower than 2.7 maybe ranked and admitted on a space-availability basis. A Certified Nurse Assistant certificate is also a mandatory requirement for admission in the major. Nursing courses are exclusively designed for 3rd and 4th years and no other courses are taken along.

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Grand View University

1200 Grand View Ave, Des Moines, IA 50316

The Evangelical Lutheran-affiliated Christian university located in Metro Des-Moines has a traditional nursing major designed for pre-licensure students.  Admission to the major is for students who have earned a GPA of 3.0 in prior college work and completed selected courses in English, Psychology and Biology. Nursing candidates must also take REACH A2 test in Reading, Vocabulary, and Basic math and earn at least 80%. The number of pre-nursing courses taken at Grand view also increases the chance of getting into the major. New major students are admitted twice annually for the fall and spring semester start dates on a space available basis.

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Iowa Wesleyan College

601 N. Main St, Mount Pleasant, Iowa 52641

The undergraduate nursing bachelors program is a 4-year full time commitment for entry level students seeking initial licensure are registered nurses. Freshmen are welcome to apply for general university admission and complete required support courses. By the end of the first year, students will have taken at least 35 pre-licensure credits. If these are completed with a cumulative GPA of 2.25, students become automatically eligible for the major ie there is no separate admission for the major.  All major students will have to show proof of Certified Nursing Assistant certification and will also have to attend a personal interview with the department chair. Nursing courses commence in the sophomore year and are taken along with few remaining support courses. In junior and senior years, a GPA of 2.5 must be maintained to be eligible for progression.

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Luther College

700 College Dr, Decorah, IA 52101

Each fall semester, Luther College admits new students for the BSN degree training. The college has two admission options: regular admission and direct entry admission. Both programs admit students as freshmen to complete nursing prerequisite courses. However, the direct admission is reserved for high achieving high school graduate with high school GPA of 3.8 and ACT or SAT scores of 28 and 1220 respectively.  10 students are admitted each fall for this option and they must maintain a GPA of 2.75 to be retained in the nursing program.

For the regular admission, students must complete prerequisites with a GPA of 2.75 or better before making a 2nd application for the major. Selection is competitive and based on space availability. All junior level courses are taken in neighboring Rochester, Minnesota. Students that rank in the top 20% of their nursing classes are eligible for nursing scholarships. All students can also participate in the Nottingham Summer immersion program.

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Mercy College of Health Sciences

928th Ave, Des Moines, IA 50309

Mercy College of Health Science offers an Online BSN integrated option program designed for Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) students. The ASN students must be holders of non-nursing bachelor degrees and must not have taken the NCLEX-RN exam. This is because bachelor degree holders are most likely to have already covered a substantial number of liberal arts and general science courses required in the lower division BSN curriculum. Usually, incoming students from the sending institution will have at least 30-35 transferable lower division credits which carry a cumulative GPA of 2.7 or better. Students then start the BSN Integrated program during the 1st semester of the ASN track. Any outstanding nursing courses and any remaining lower division and nursing courses are covered in the integrated curriculum.  So to know, this program is not an independent program per se, but a collaboration of an ASN program from a sending institution and the online BSN at MCHS as the receiving school.

Morningside College

Morningside Ave, Sioux City, IA 51106

Acceptance into the BSN degree requires a separate application and admission process from applying to the college. Students first seek general admission in the university to complete support courses for the major.  Usually, a minimum of 27 credits of support and general education courses are required before applying to the major. Some required courses include chemistry, human anatomy, general psychology, physiology and communication. Such courses must be completed with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 and student must be ready for a personal interview with a faculty member.

 Application to the major is done at the spring of freshman year for admission consideration in the fall semester. Any outstanding liberal arts and support courses are taken in the next 3 academic years along with the nursing major courses. The college provides a number of summer internships opportunities in various locations in Morningside.

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Mount Mercy University

1330 Elmhurst Cr, NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402

The Bachelor of Science in nursing (BSN) at mount Mercy is a 4-year curriculum consisting of nursing, core and prerequisites courses. Freshmen students take prerequisites and co-requisites in the first year which must carry a cumulative GPA of 2.7. Application to the nursing major is separate and happens in the last semester of the freshman year. By then, students are expected to have completed a Certified Nurse Assistant course. The BSN major starts in fall of the 2nd year and proceeds for the next 6 semesters.

 At sophomore level, students cover a curriculum of both nursing and liberal arts courses. Junior and senior years are exclusively reserved for nursing courses and the capstone project. Some courses in the BSN curriculum especially in the general education segment can be completed in full time or part time options.  For the academically motivated students, the Kappa Xi chapter of STTI is the good place to nurture scholastic interests.

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Northwestern College

101 SW. 7th St, Orange City, IA 51041

The basic nursing program at Northwestern integrates liberal arts and faith in the nursing profession. 34 students are admitted in the preparatory phase of the program every year to embark on a pre-nursing curriculum in the freshman year. During the spring of the freshman year, students apply to the nursing major. All students who meet the admission requirements are guaranteed progression into the major. This makes the program an attractive for many students that would not like to become sidelined due to many qualified candidates.  The entire program takes 4 years to complete with study abroad and cross-cultural experience in Tanzania.

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St. Ambrose University

518 West Locust St, Davenport, IA 52803

At St. Ambrose, students are admitted as freshman to complete a pre-nursing curriculum in the first year and second semester of the sophomore year. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required on these courses to be eligible to apply again to the nursing major which starts in the spring semester of the sophomore year.  Prior to being allowed to start the clinical courses, students must show proof of Certified Nursing Assistant certification. In addition, applicants must submit letters of recommendation and TOEFL or IELTS scores for students with English as second language.  In the spring semester of sophomore level, students complete 12 of the required 54 credits of the nursing major. In senior year, students can add courses in biology to enable them graduate with a minor in biology. Upon completion of the entire curriculum, seniors will take an assessment test to gauge their readiness for the NLCEX-RN exam.

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University of Dubuque

2000 University Ave, Dubuque, IA 52001

University of Dubuque has two admission options for the BSN program. The first options in the Early Admission plan designed for high school students who meet any of the following status: minimum ACT of 25 or Minimum SAT of 1130 (Reading/Math) or 1680 (Reading/Math/Writing). Such students must make their intention known to the department of nursing so that they can receive an admission invitation. Option two is the regular/competitive admission for students who are admitted in the university to take the first 2years of pre-nursing courses.

Both categories of students complete pre-nursing courses but the difference comes at progression in the major. Progression into the major requires a minimum GPA of 2.75 and a grade “C” or better on all pre-nursing courses taken. Other requirements include having a CNA certificate and scores of TEAS test. Early admission students who meet these requirements have guaranteed progression while the other group depends on competitive selection based on space. Other minor factors may be used to select candidates in the latter group.

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University of Iowa

50 Newton Rd, Iowa City, IA 52242

The university has a BSN curriculum designed as a 2 years prerequisite coursework and 2 years nursing courses. 64 students are admitted in the program each fall and spring semesters.

There are two entry options into the nursing program: early decision admission and competitive regular admission. Early admission for direct entry to the major is reserved for high achieving high school seniors with high school GPA of 3.8 and ACT composite scores of 28. Such students must maintain a GPA of 3.2 to be eligible to remain in the program.

On the other hand, competitive admission is for students who are admitted in the university as freshmen to complete the prerequisites curriculum. For these admission to the major is based on the minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. It should be noted that at the time of application, students can have 48 credits of the prerequisites curriculum but at the time of enrollment in the major, all 64 credits must have been completed. This option is also open to transfers students that have taken prerequisite courses in accredited colleges. For early admission, the program can take 4 years while competitive admission students usually take 4.5 years to complete.

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★ Featured Online Nursing Programs

You might also be interested in one of the following featured nursing programs that are currently accepting students and have online or hybrid nursing programs. You can get in touch with these featured programs directly to get your questions answered. Be sure to check with each program on specific prerequisites for their program!

Online BSN Programs

Online MSN Programs

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