Briar Cliff University Nursing School Review

Briar Cliff University (founded in 1929) takes pride in its small-school environment. The average class size is nineteen, and the student to faculty ratio is fourteen to one. Just over 1000 students are enrolled at the college. Briar Cliff University (BCU) is a liberal arts college, but it also has a wide variety of pre-professional programs.

Among its work-training programs are several in the field of nursing, at both the undergraduate and graduate level. The undergraduate nursing programs at Briar Cliff University are accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC); the graduate nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – Basic Option

The basic Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) option is a standard, four-year course sequence. Students on this track of the BSN program spend their first three semesters completing general education requirements and nursing prerequisites. They apply to the nursing program in the spring of their second year, and begin nursing courses and clinical rotations in the following spring. A student on the basic BSN track must earn at least 125 credits in order to graduate. After graduating, she is eligible to take the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), and to begin working as a Registered Nurse (RN).

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – RN to BSN

A graduate of an associate degree program or a diploma program can continue working while earning his BSN degree through Briar Cliff University’s online RN to BSN program. Briar Cliff requires that the incoming RN complete prerequisites in psychology, sociology, anatomy, developmental psychology, physiology, and microbiology. The incoming RN will be awarded thirty advanced placement credits, thanks to his previous nursing coursework. He must complete the remaining twenty-one nursing credits (offered online) through Briar Cliff University, as well as any missing general education requirements. In total, he must earn 124 credits in order to graduate. The length of the RN to BSN program can vary, depending on how many general education classes an RN must complete and on whether he decides to enroll part-time or full-time.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing – LPN to BSN

Briar Cliff University also gives Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) advanced standing in its BSN program. Before enrolling in the LPN to BSN program, an LPN must complete the following prerequisites: psychology, anatomy, psychology, physiology, and nutrition. Once enrolled, the LPN can begin the BSN program along with the second-year BSN students. She needs three academic years, on a full-time basis, to earn her BSN degree and prepare for her new career as an RN.

Master of Science in Nursing

Briar Cliff University offers a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program with two different tracks. While the classes are not offered online, they are offered in a flexible format in order to accommodate working RNs. Students attend classes in the evening, and take up to three years on a part-time basis to complete the program. The curriculum includes fifteen credits of core graduate nursing classes. In addition to the core classes, students must complete classes and clinical rotations in their chosen area of specialization. Briar Cliff University offers the following two areas of specialization:

Family Nurse Practitioner:

In order to complete the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) track of the MSN program, a student must earn twenty-seven credits in addition to the required fifteen credits of core classes.

Nurse Educator:

A prospective Nurse Educator must earn at least twenty credits in the nursing education area of focus, in addition to the fifteen credits of core graduate nursing courses.

Post-master’s Certificate

An-MSN prepared nurse may also enroll in the FNP and Nurse Educator tracks of the MSN program. A nurse with this level of education is excused from the core graduate nursing classes. He only needs to complete the classes in the chosen area of specialization. In order to earn certification as an FNP, he must earn twenty-four credits. In order to become a nurse educator, he must earn seventeen credits. He can complete a post-masters certificate over the course of two years, on a part-time basis. Classes are offered in the evenings.

Briar Cliff University
3303 Rebecca Street
Sioux City, Iowa 51104

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