Excelsior College Nursing Program Review


Excelsior College (EC) is a private college that offers undergraduate and graduate degrees. It is a large school with over 30,000 undergraduates and over 1,000 graduate students. There are four schools at the college, including the School of Nursing where a variety of nursing options are offered. Excelsior College focuses on the adult learner and on removing obstacles that keep these learners from moving forward in their education.

Students of all ages are accepted, including those who have just graduated from high school. The student body is diverse with the average of students at 39 years. There are also many active-duty or reserve military personnel who are enrolled at Excelsior College. In addition, over 35% of the study body consists of those who have been underrepresented in higher education.

Nursing Programs

Associate in Science and Associate in Applied Science Degrees (Nursing AS Degree / AAS Degree)

This nursing AS/AAS degree program is designed for those who have previous experience in the healthcare field, such as Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVNs), paramedics, military corpsmen, physicians or physician’s assistants trained outside the United States, respiratory therapists, licensed midwives, or those who have completed at least half of the clinical nursing credit hours with a minimum grade of C for an associate or bachelor’s degree. Students must earn a total of 67 credits. General education requirements are 31 credits and nursing courses are 36 credits.

Students must complete Excelsior College’s requirements for an associate degree, as well as required nursing courses. General education requirements are a written English course, Information Literacy, a humanities course, Life Span Developmental Psychology, a Sociology course, Human Anatomy and Physiology, Microbiology, and Mathematics. The Associate in Science degree requires six electives, and the Associate in Applied Science degree requires six electives in arts and sciences. Required nursing courses are Transition to the Registered Professional Nurse Role, Essentials of Nursing Care: Health Safety, Essentials of Nursing Care: Health Differences, Essentials of Nursing Care: Chronicity, and Essentials of Nursing Care: Reproductive Health. Other required nursing courses include Health Differences Across the Life Span 1, 2, and 3, Focused Clinical Competencies Assessment, and Clinical Performance in Nursing Examination. Upon completion, the graduate qualifies to take the NCLEX for licensure as a Registered Nurse.

Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BS in nursing)

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree requires the completion of 121 credits by the student. These are divided between general education courses totaling 61 credits and nursing courses that total 60 credits. The general education courses include six credits of written English, Information Literacy, nine credits in Humanities, and three credits in Ethics. Fifteen credits of natural sciences and math, Human Anatomy and Physiology, Microbiology, Sciences Supportive of Nursing, and Statistics are also required. In addition, twelve credits of arts and sciences electives must be completed. Nursing courses that are required are Professional Socialization or Professional Transitions, Health Assessment and Promotion in Nursing Practice, Research in Nursing, Teaching and Learning in a Diverse Society, Management in Nursing Examination, Community-Focused Nursing Examination, Nursing Informatics, upper level nursing elective credits, and the final course that is Capstone. After completing these courses, the student is qualified to take the NCLEX exam for licensure as a Registered Nurse.

Online Master of Science in Nursing

RNs with a BSN may enter the Master of Science in Nursing (MS) Program at Excelsior College. The programs offered by Excelsior at the master’s level are RN to Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Clinical Systems Management, RN to Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Nursing Informatics, or RN to Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Nursing Education. Graduate nursing core courses must be completed for any of these specialties. They include Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Practice, Professional Role Development and Ethics, Research and Evidence-Based Practice, Health Care Delivery Systems: Political, Social, and Economic Influences, and Community Nursing: Human Diversity and Public Health. These courses complete 19 credits.

Once the core courses for the master’s program are completed, students take courses that are tailored toward their specialty. The RN who is working towards a MS in Health Care Informatics must also take Issues in Health Care Informatics and Management Information for Decision Support. RNs working towards the Management MS complete Management of Clinical Systems, Management of Fiscal and Operational Systems, and Leadership in Organizational Systems. The final phase of the program is the Capstone Experience, which is a five credit practicum. RNs studying to earn their MS in Nursing Education take similar classes with an emphasis on educating future nurses.

Online RN to Master of Science in Nursing

This program is specifically designed for RNs who have an Associate Degree in nursing who want to earn both their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Master of Science in Nursing (MS). Students must earn 60 credits in general education, including 12 in humanities, 6 in written English, 15 in social sciences and history, 15 in natural sciences and math, and 12 in arts and sciences electives. The nursing component of the bachelor’s degree program includes 30 hours of courses. After these courses are completed, students take the NCLEX-RN for their license as Registered Nurses. The nursing courses needed for graduating with a bachelor’s degree include Management in Nursing Examination, Health Assessment and Promotion in Nursing Practice, Teaching and Learning in a Diverse Society, Professional Socialization or Professional Transitions.

Three courses count for both the BSN and MS portions of this program are Research and Evidence-Based Practice, Health Care Delivery Systems: Political, Social, and Economic Influences, and Community Nursing: Human Diversity and Public Health. The courses required for the MS portion of the degree are dependent on the specialty that the student chooses for graduate work. The options include three different master’s degree specialties in management, informatics, or nursing education. The program choices are Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Clinical Systems Management, Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Nursing Informatics, or Master of Science in Nursing Specialization in Nursing Education.

Certificate Programs

Excelsior College also offers certificates to those who already hold a graduate degree. There are two certificates available at Excelsior from which to choose. These are a Graduate Certificate in Nursing Management or a Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing Education. Either certificate can be earned by completing four required courses that are delivered online. Each one lasts for 15 weeks.

Contact:
Excelsior College
7 Columbia Circle,
Albany, NY 12203-5159

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