Committed to patient-centered care, nurses play a critical role in promoting health, preventing illness and providing compassionate care to individuals across their lifespan.

As a nurse, you'll have the opportunity to make a profound impact on the lives of patients and their families as an advocate, educator and caregiver.

At the College of Charleston, you can begin your journey toward a rewarding career in nursing by completing the necessary prerequisite courses and gaining a strong foundation in the sciences and liberal arts.

Contact Health Professions Advising

Pre-Professional Nursing Advising Guide

The College of Charleston does not grant nursing degrees. However, we do offer pre-professional advising and coursework that prepare students for acceptance to the Accelerated BSN Program offered at the Medical University of South Carolina and other nationally accredited nursing programs. The following guide - in addition to consultation with your advisor - can help you prepare for your application and potential admission to a nursing program.
  • Undergraduate Preparation/Prerequisites

    College of Charleston students can complete 60 semester hours of transfer credits, or an undergraduate degree in their chosen major, and apply to professional schools of nursing.

    Students can apply to the College of Nursing at MUSC after having completed a minimum of 60 semester hours of coursework in specific categories or an undergraduate degree.

    The undergraduate prerequisite courses required for nursing schools are similar for most professional programs, but additional courses may be required by individual schools.

    The following lists common prerequisite courses for admission into nursing programs. Make sure to check the websites of the nursing programs that you are most interested in applying to for complete undergraduate requirements.

    • General Biology with labs (8 semester hours)
    • General Chemistry with labs (8 semester hours)
    • Human Anatomy and Physiology with labs (8 semester hours)
    • English (6 semester hours)
    • Microbiology with lab (4 semester hours)
    • Psychology (3 semester hours)
    • Psychology (Life Span Human Development) (3 semester hours)
    • Statistics (3 semester hours)
    • Nutrition (3 semester hours)
    • Humanities (Fine Arts, Literature, History, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Languages, Social Sciences) (15 semester hours)
    • Electives (Course work over 101 leve) (17 semester hours)

      Minimum Number of transfer credits (60 semester hours)
      College of Charleston Bachelor's Degree (122 semester hours)

    • College of Charleston Prerequisite Equivalencies for the MUSC School of Nursing

    Volunteer Service

    Students are urged to do volunteer service in a healthcare setting.

    You may volunteer only a few (3) hours per week, but you must be dependable and your activities should extend over a significant period of time.

    Diverse clinical experiences are encouraged and certifications such as EMT or CNA give added value to your application.

    The experience component of your applicant profile is increasingly important for some programs, so you should make the most of this opportunity. Also, you should ensure that someone familiar with your performance can serve as a reference.

    View Catalog Course Descriptions
  • Dual Degree Programs (MUSC, USC Upstate)

    Dual Degree Program for Nursing with MUSC

    The Medical University of South Carolina and the College of Charleston have a partnership allowing selected students at the College to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from the College of Charleston and a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from MUSC in only 4.5 years.

    • MUSC’s College of Nursing will hold seats for up to six College of Charleston biology-seeking students each year to transfer into MUSC’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science Nursing program.
    • College of Charleston biology students will be allowed to apply for the program during their freshmen year.
    • Accepted students will be required to follow a structured semester-by-semester schedule of coursework at the College of Charleston and maintain a minimum cumulative and prerequisite science GPA of 3.5.
    • All degree and prerequisite requirements must be satisfied by the end of their junior year at which time accepted students will take a Leave of Absence from colelge of Charleston to enter the MUSC program.
    • Upon completion of the first year of the Accelerated B.S.N. program at MUSC, students are eligible to participate in commencement exercises at College of Charleston and then return to MUSC to complete the last semester of nursing classes and graduate from MUSC with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

    Dual Degree Program for Nursing with USC Upstate

    College of Charleston has partnered with the University of South Carolina Upstate Mary Black School of Nursing to offer a dual degree program for a small number of entering first-year students.

    The partnership allows a student to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from the College of Charleston and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) from USC Upstate in 5 years.

    • Students must declare a B.A. in Biology to qualify for this program and complete a separate application during summer orientation.
    • Students accepted to the program and satisfy all the course requirements will be guaranteed a spot at Mary Black.
    • Students accepted to this program are required to relocate to Spartanburg, S.C. for the last two years in order to complete the clinical portion of their nursing degree.
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE)

    The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is only required for advanced nursing degrees beyond undergraduate B.S.N. programs.

    The test covers basic mathematics and reading comprehension skills and is designed measure your general academic ability including critical thinking, analytical reasoning, quantitative reasoning and communication skills.

    The GRE consists of five sections.

    • Analytical Writing (One section)
    • Verbal Reasoning (Two sections)
    • Quantitative Reasoning (Two sections)
    Learn More on the GRE
  • Timeline

    First Year

    • Declare your major. Identify yourself as a pre-health profession student on the major declaration form.
    • Make an appointment/get to know your advisors. Discuss your academic game plan.
    • Check in regularly with your advisor to discuss your academic progress and plans to complete all prerequisite courses and gain clinical/volunteeer experience.
    • Work/volunteer to gain experience and hours

    Sophomore Year

    • Meet with your advisor to discuss your spring schedule.
    • Continue with your sequence of courses.
    • Identify the nursing schools to which you will apply and discuss the prerequisites with your advisor.
    • Stay involved in extracurricular activities (shadowing, service, volunteer). Consider leadership positions in these groups.
    • Take the GRE. (You will want to score a mimimum of 500 on both the quantitative and verbal portions of the exam.)

    • Two-Year Plan: Complete and submit your application through the Nursing Centralized Application Service (NursingCAS)
      • Applications for nursing school at some schools (including MUSC) are accepted for both fall and spring semesters. Check their website for deadlines. You will want to apply as early as possible to enhance your chances for acceptance.
    • Two-Year Plan: If you are offered a position at a professional nursing school, you can leave the College of Charleston and complete your BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) degree at a professional school. If you are not offered a position, you can continue toward the completion of your undergraduate degree at College of Charleston and apply again later. 

    Junior Year

    • Talk to Health Professions Advising Office about competitiveness.
    • Register for the GRE (Fall).
    • Study and take the GRE (Spring/Summer).
    • Identify 3-4 individuals to write letters of recommendation (Spring).
    • Complete and submit your application through the Nursing Centralized Application Service (NursingCAS).
    • Continue engaging in activities.

    Senior Year

    • Meet with your advisor.
    • Get a degree audit and apply for graduation.
    • Ensure your application materials are organized and submitted within the deadlines (earlier is always better).
    • Prepare for interviews (if applicable).
    • Interview and wait.
    • Explore opportunities for financial aid.
    • Send updated transcripts directly to the schools to which you applied (Spring).
    • Discuss alternative plans with your advisor if necessary.
    • Finish your degree requirements and graduate.