Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

About the BSN Program

The Nursing Bachelor of Science (BSN) prelicensure program at SF State is a two-year program which prepares students for entry level positions in professional nursing practice in a variety of settings including hospitals, community clinics, long term care, home care, and community health agencies. Graduates work as staff nurses in the following areas: maternity, pediatrics, medical-surgical nursing, gerontology, psychiatric/mental health, and public/community health nursing.

Graduates of the program are eligible for public health nursing certification in California upon licensure as a Registered Nurse. The program also provides the basis for leadership and graduate education in nursing.

The SF State nursing major has been impacted since fall 1992 (more qualified students apply than can be accommodated in the program).  Typically 600-700 applications are received for 60-80 spaces each academic year. First degree applicants who are not admitted are encouraged to pursue an alternate major and then re-apply as a second baccalaureate or entry level master's student. 

Additional information about the program, including the curriculum plan and student learning outcomes, can be obtained in the nursing section of the SF State bulletin.  

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Freshman cannot be admitted to San Francisco State University as a nursing major.  They instead can be admitted as Pre-Nursing students or to an alternate major. Please note:

  • The Pre-Nursing designation does not guarantee admission into the nursing major.
  • These students must work closely with counselors in the university Undergraduate Advising Center or the College of Health and Social Sciences Student Resource Center regarding schedule planning for prerequisite coursework. It is important for freshman to seek advisement beginning their first semester to remain on track for submitting an application to the nursing major, ideally, during the fall semester of sophomore year.

Current SF State Students

SF State students who have earned 96 or more units may not apply to an impacted major.  The School of Nursing is complying with this policy. Please visit the university policy for details. We encourage students who are affected by the policy to graduate from the university under an alternate major and then apply to one of our entry level master's programs.

All prospective students must be admissible to SF State in accordance with existing criteria as stated in the “Undergraduate Admissions Requirements” section of the University Bulletin.

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Supplemental Criteria

These documents are optional, but highly recommended. Please note that volunteer experience will get points only if it's more than 120 hours. In addition, Letter of verification needs to be on letterhead from organization(s):

  • Health related work/volunteer experience
  • Service to Underserved Community/volunteer experience
  • Multi-linguistic fluency within health-related or service to underserved community experiences
  • Veteran or active duty military status

Eligibility Requirements

The following requirements must be met to be eligible to apply:

  • Residency
    Must be a California resident or be eligible for in-state tuition.
  • Minimum Grade Point Average
    Prerequisite GPA must be 3.0 or higher at the time of School of Nursing supplemental application.
  • Score 78 or higher on the TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills) 

Applicants are allowed to take TEAS three times total.



  • Prerequisite Coursework
    At least seven of the eight prerequisite courses must be completed by the time of School of Nursing supplemental application submission.*

*Starting Spring 2021 admission, all eight prerequisite courses must be completed by the time of supplemental application submission.

Course Title

SF State Course Number

Human Anatomy with Lab **

 BIOL 220 (4 semester units)

Human Physiology with Lab **

 BIOL 212/ 213

(4 semester units) 

*Survey of Chemistry with Lab **  CHEM 101102 (4 semester units) 

General Microbiology with Lab **

 BIOL 210211 (4 semester units) 
Written Communication  (Please refer to SF State Bulletin
Oral Communication  (Please refer to SF State Bulletin
Critical Thinking  (Please refer to SF State Bulletin
Statistics   Math 124 (3 semester units)  

*This is an integrated course in which topics in general, organic and biochemistry are covered. Effective Fall 2014, courses in general, inorganic, or organic chemistry are also acceptable .

**Science courses must be taken within the last seven years.

  1. A minimum grade of C is required in all prerequisite courses. A grade of C- is not acceptable.
  2. Please consult Assist to determine comparable or articulated coursework taken at California community colleges or CSUs. If the course in question was taken at institutions other than California community colleges, please go here.
  3. Repeating a prerequisite course is acceptable and the higher grade will be used by the School of Nursing Admissions Committee.
  4. Prospective students who are pursuing their first bachelor's degree and have a question about the written communication, oral communication, critical thinking or quantitative reasoning (statistics) courses should contact the SF State Student Outreach Services office.  These four courses are also university-wide Transfer Admissions requirements and must be evaluated by a university pre-admissions counselor.

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Courses required for RN licensure in California

While not required for admission, prospective students should be aware that the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) requires students to have completed a minimum of 16 semester units comprising natural sciences, behavioral, and social sciences. To complement the anatomy, physiology, and microbiology prerequisites, students should plan to complete a General Psychology or Developmental Psychology course prior to taking NURS 328 Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Theory and Practicum and any additional behavioral or social science course, as needed to fulfill the BRN's requirement.
Note: These courses may also satisfy GE requirements.

SF State Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR)

Second Year Composition ENG 214 or an equivalent community college course as listed on Assist is required prior to enrolling in the nursing GWAR course, NURS 312GW, offered semester one of the program. All undergraduate nursing students must complete NURS 312 GWAR.

Pre-Licensure Course Credit By Examination

Applicants for credit by examination will be held to all existing BSN program requirements, including admission requirements, prerequisite courses, supporting courses, courses in the major, and graduation requirements. Information on the awarding of course credit for previous education or other acquired knowledge, including military education and experience can be found on Nursing Student Handbook.

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Applicant Resources

Check the University Application Status

Tuition and Fees

Financial Aid

Program Roadmap

BSN Information Sessions