Mount St. Mary College (MSMC) in Los Angeles, CA started its accelerated baccalaureate nursing program back in 1995 to serve a huge need, which is to give those with a bachelor’s degree in another field a chance to get a second bachelor’s degree in nursing quickly. These students have already completed general education requirements and only need nursing-specific instruction to get into the workforce. Today, Mount St. Mary’s College starts two cohorts of 40 students every year in its accelerated nursing program. Students spend 12 months (eg. from May to May for those starting in summer term) learning and practicing nursing in order to earn a RN license and enter a new, rewarding career.
There are other accelerated BSN programs that are starting to meet the needs of baccalaureate holders that want to get into nursing in an accelerated fashion, especially given the difficult California economy right now increasing the number of unemployed career changers. One such upstart is SDSU’s Accelerated BSN Nursing Program which is an online accelerated program with sites in Glendale, CA and San Diego, CA. There are others accelerated programs in California and all over the nation by looking at this list of nursing programs.
Mount St. Mary College Accelerated BSN Prerequisite Course Requirements
To gain admission into this nursing program, students need to hold a baccalaureate degree with an overall GPA of 3.0 due to the intense nature of this program. They are also required to complete the following prerequisite courses with a GPA of 3.0 as well:
- Chemistry or Physics (3-4 units)
- Human Anatomy With Lab (3-4 units)
- Human Physiology With Lab (3-4 units)
- Microbiology (4 units)
- Human Nutrition (3 units)
- General Psychology (3 units)
- Lifespan Developmental Psychology (Infant through Adult) (3 units)
- Sociology or Cultural Anthropology (3 units)
- Written Communication (3 units) – probably already completed with previous BA degree
- Oral Communications (3 units) – might be already completed with previous BA degree
- a Philosophy course (3 units) – might be already completed with previous BA degree
- an upper division Philosophy – Bioethics course (3 units)
The bioethics course can be completed prior to admissions at another college. Here is a list of those colleges and courses:
California State University
- Fullerton- Phil 314 Medical Ethics
- Long Beach- Phil 403 Medical Ethics
- Los Angeles- Phil 429 Bioethics
- Cal State Poly Pomona-Phil 433 Bioethics
- San Diego State University – Phil 330 Medical Ethics
Loyola Marymount Univeristy
- Phil 330 Contemporary Moral Problems
- Phil 410E Bioethics (ONLINE)
University of California
- Los Angeles (UCLA)- Phil 155 Medical Ethics
- Irvine (UCI) – Phil 131C Medical Ethics
- Riverside (UCR)- Phil 167 Biomedical Ethics
- San Diego (UCSD) – Phil 163 Biomedical Ethics
The online course from Taylor is probably the best option because it’s cheap and fast. It can be completed in five weeks for far less than the $1000 per unit price at MSMC. The Taylor class requires five papers (four are 6-8 pages, one is 25-30 pages). It seems like a lot of work, but many previous students have said that the instructor there is lenient.
The required prerequisite science courses (chemistry or physics, anatomy, physiology, and microbiology) must have been completed within the five years prior to admission.
As far as documentation requirements, transcripts from all colleges attended need to be submitted. Also, the school requires two recommendations from those familiar with the applicant’s ability to succeed in an accelerated nursing program. An interview may be requested for qualified applicants as well.
Financial and Tuition Costs and Financial Aid of Mount St. Mary College Accelerated BSN
As of 2010, the cost of tuition for the entire 12 month program is $53,947 per year. Room and board is an additional $13,000. Of course, this is a very steep amount to get a RN license and start a nursing career. There are many associate degree nursing schools at California community colleges that can be had for just $5,000 in a two year program. The problem with the cheaper community college option is that competition is even more stiff there than at MSMC due to community colleges acceptance of minimally qualified students with GPA below a 3.0. There are also long waiting lists or admissions deferred due to not being accepted.
Students need to weigh the significant opportunity cost of delaying their nursing career one year more with a traditional 2-year program plus time spent on a waiting list or time spent looking for a community college that will take the student. When totaled together, the additional time may mean two or three years of nursing salary lost.
Although MSMC’s accelerated nursing program is a great option for those who already have a BA, the costs are still substantial with a large student loan obligation (second baccalaureates are generally not eligible for grants from federal or state). However, the costs of delaying a nursing career are substantial as well. Only the student can decide which program is best. Remember that there are other accelerated nursing programs in California as well to consider.