Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Program?
A: The purpose of the baccalaureate program leading to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing is to provide a curriculum that will broaden the theoretical knowledge base of the learner in preparation for an entry- level professional nursing practice and possibility of graduate nursing study. If you currently have a non-nursing bachelor's degree and are looking to transition into nursing, please consider the EL MSN program.
BSN Application Information
Q: When are the application periods to the College of Nursing?
A: We accept students to the BSN program for the Fall & Spring semesters. Please refer to the Important Dates page for a most updated list of deadlines and application workshops.
Q: How do I apply to the BSN program?
A: You can access a step-by-step process of how to apply to the BSN program here.
Q: I applied for admission to the Nursing program but I did not get in. Can I reapply?
A: Yes, applicants may apply to the BSN program if he/she has previously applied. The CBU SON recommends that all applicants have a back-up plan for a major and to consider the EL MSN program if not accepted to the BSN program after applying twice. However, there is no limit to the amount of times you may apply to the program.
Q: Can I reuse my application that I submitted through NursingCAS for the next application period?
A: Yes. You can use the same NursingCAS application. Here's how:
Step 1: Log on to your application
Step 2: Click "Add Programs"
Step 3: Search for CBU's BSN program and click the "+"
Step 4: Add and update any information (coursework/grades for prereq's, volunteer experience, etc.)
Step 5: You will need to fill out the "Program Materials" section again. This includes attaching any documents that are required. Note: You do not need a new Release & Waiver or Conduct Clearance, but you will need to re-upload it to the new app.
Q: Do I have to resubmit all of the documents again?
A: The documents that will need to be updated are transcripts if you had work in progress when you previously applied. You will also need to fill out a new conduct clearance form from universities other than CBU if you were enrolled after submitting the prior application. For the additional documents that have not changed, you can just re-upload the documents to your new application.
Q: How many students do you accept per year for the BSN program?
A: We accept 80 students in the fall and 80 students in the spring for a total of 160 per year.
Q: Do I have to be accepted to the University before I apply for the nursing program?
A: Yes, applicants must first apply and be accepted to CBU as an undergraduate pre-nursing student. Upon acceptance to the university, students may either complete prerequisites and other degree requirements at CBU prior to applying to the BSN program or if all requirements are met, apply directly to the BSN program using the online application and program specific requirements.
Q: Am I eligible to apply for the next application cycle?
A: Please refer to the Admission Process page. You may apply if you meet the following requirements:
- received acceptance to the university as a pre-nursing student;
- completed prerequisites or will complete them by the stated deadline;
- have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 at the end of the Spring semester
Q: I have some questions about the application. What should I do?
A: Every application period we offer the BSN Applicant Workshop to assist students with the completion of the application process, review the timeline and discuss interview format. Please check the Important Dates page to see when these workshops will be held.
Q: What can I do to better my chances of getting in?
A: CBU College of Nursing uses Holistic Review to evaluate applications to the Nursing program. Holistic Review incorporates the following elements: Experiences, Attributes, and Metrics. To position yourself as a competitive applicant, the goal is to be strong in each of the three areas. Here are some things to think about with each category:
- Exposure to healthcare- volunteer at a hospital, shadow nurses, conduct informational interviews, work in a local clinic, obtain licences or certifications
- Community Enrichment- volunteer in your community (church, school, etc.)
- Honors/Awards- any honors (leadership opportunities) or awards that you have received in the last 3 years
- Thorough and descriptive personal statement
- Solid references
- Interview (if applicable)
- Cumulative GPA
- Science GPA (from all attempts of science prereqs)
- PAX exam score
- It is beneficial to your application if you did not repeat science courses
Q: How do I know if I am a competitive applicant?
A: Click here to see some prior acceptance statistics.
Q: Which entrance exam is required?
A: We require that all students applying to the CBU College of Nursing take an entrance exam. The CBU SON uses the RN Pre-Admission Exam (PAX) Third Edition administered by the National League for Nursing (NLN). The PAX test measures your verbal, mathematics and science ability. We no longer accept the TEAS exam only the PAX exam. You may not substitute a prior TEAS exam for the PAX exam.
Q: What is the minimum PAX score I need to be eligible to apply to the College of Nursing?
A: We do not require a minimum score in order to apply to the BSN program. Your score is compared to other applicants and it is important to be prepared and score as high as possible as this is a competitive program.
Q: What is considered a good PAX score?
A: We compare the PAX exam scores to the applicants of each application period so we will not have comparative information until after the final notification of the application period. The average PAX score that we usually see is between 110-120 composite score.
Q: When is the PAX test offered?
A: The PAX test is only offered at CBU during the College of Nursing application periods for students accepted to CBU as a pre-nursing student. Applicants may take the exam at another location and send the official score report to CBU. Please refer to the NLN website for options.
Q: Who can take the PAX exam at CBU?
A: Students who have been accepted to CBU as a pre-nursing student, and meet the minimum eligibility for CBU's nursing program may take the PAX exam at CBU. We do not allow students who are applying to other Nursing programs to take the PAX at CBU. This is for students applying to CBU's nursing program only.
Q: How do I register for the PAX exam?
A: Registration for the PAX exam will be online only. Only eligible applicants should register for the exam. Eligibility is described above. If you register for the exam and do not meet the eligibility requirements for the BSN program, no refund will be issued. It is highly recommended that you view your spring grades and cumulative GPA prior to registering. Please note that the Inside CBU degree guide may not reflect an accurate cumulative GPA if you have repeated any courses. For question about your GPA please contact the Office of the University Registrar.
Space is limited for each testing date so it is recommended that you sign up early to secure your desired date. Once a test date is filled no other registration will be accepted for that date.
You may take the PAX at another location but must send the official transcript directly from NLN.
Q: Is there a cost for the PAX exam?
A: The exam costs $35 and you must pay at the time of online registration. There is no refund. Be sure to read all information prior to registering.
Q: How can I prepare for the PAX exam?
A: You can purchase the NLN study guide online. We are currently using the third edition. You may use any study guide to help you prepare. There are many available resources found online for the PAX-RN exam. CBU students are highly encouraged to use the Office of Student Success to review any content he/she needs assistance in.
Q: How many times can I take the PAX?
A: You may take the exam once every application cycle.
Q: What do I bring to the exam?
A: A CBU ID card or state issued driver's license is acceptable. Paper and pencils will be provided. No calculators are permitted.
Q: Can I take the PAX after submitting my NursingCAS application?
A: Yes. Since CBU is adding your scores to your application, you can take the PAX at any time that it is offered during the application period. You do not need to wait to submit your NursingCAS application until you have taken the PAX. You can even submit the app by the early app deadline and take the PAX at a later time slot.
Q: Do you accept students who have not taken any prerequisites at CBU?
A: We do have a "CBU Residency" policy, which states that students must be in progress or have completed 12 units at the time of applying to gain priority admission. Once all "CBU resident" student applications have been considered, we will then evaluate applications for students who have not established residency. Due to the competitiveness of the last few application cycles, we have not been able to accept any students who have not established CBU residency.
Q: How do I know which classes will transfer from another college or university?
A: For a list of equivalent courses from other community colleges, please see the articulation agreements.
Q: What if I am a transfer student and I have completed all of my prerequisites?
A: There may still be general education and degree requirements you may take at CBU. You may also consider one the many Health Science minors offered through the College of Allied Health to enhance your education.
Q: Will you evaluate my prerequisite courses taken at another college/university?
A: Once you have been accepted and confirm your attendance as a CBU pre-nursing student, you will receive an official transcript review from the University Registrar's Office prior to your initial registration. Due to this high volume of inquiries we cannot evaluate transcripts prior to acceptance to CBU. Please refer to the articulation agreements. If your school is not listed then we do not have an articulation agreement with this institution.
Q: What if I have already completed some coursework in another BSN program?
A: If you have completed nursing courses in a BSN program, it is possible that we can evaluate your courses and determine advanced placement in the Nursing program. You will need to complete the traditional application process and gain acceptance as one of the 80 in order to have your coursework evaluated.
Q: What if I already have a non-nursing bachelor's degree?
A: You may consider our EL MSN program which is a graduate program designed for individuals who already hold a bachelor's degree and are looking to transition into nurse leaders.
Q: Is the SAT/ACT required?
A: The College of Nursing does not require either of these exams however you may need one of these exams for university admissions. Your university admissions counselor will let you know.
Q: Do I have to have hospital/health care experience before I can apply to the program?
A: Some exposure to hospital/health care settings is highly recommended. Interacting with patients and health care professionals is essential to creating a foundation that promotes the critical thinking and clinical decision making necessary for the development and practice of fundamental nursing skills however we do not have a minimum requirement of practical experience.
After Applying to the BSN Program
Q: How will I know if you received all of BSN admission documents?
A: You will be able to track your documents via nursingCAS and they will send you frequent e-mails.
Q: How do you determine who is selected for the program?
A: The Nursing Admissions Committee uses a Holistic Review process which includes a balanced look at Metrics, Experience, and Attributes.
Q: Do you interview everyone who applies to the program?
A: Not all qualified applicants will be scheduled for an interview.
Q: When are interviews scheduled if I am selected?
A: Within a few weeks of the application deadline you will be contacted via email to schedule an interview if you are being considered for the program or an email denying your acceptance.
Q: When will I find out if I am accepted to the program?
A: Upon completion of a successful interview, final applicants will be selected and an e-mail within two weeks of spring grades posting for a fall program applicant and by mid-November for a spring program applicant.
Q: Is there a waiting list?
A: We do not maintain a waiting list.
Q: Can I reapply if I am not accepted the first time I apply?
A: Yes, you can reapply during the next open application period via NursingCAS. Your application will be considered with all other new applicants. We highly recommend that an applicant not apply to the BSN program more than twice.
Q: How long is the entire program?
A: 4 years; 41/2 years or 5 years depending on completion of prerequisite courses and other degree requirements.
Q: Am I required to attend an Information Session?
A: We highly recommend you RSVP to attend an information session as we discuss pertinent details of the program and clarify admission guidelines, prerequisite courses, financial aid, etc.
Q: Is this program accredited?
A: The California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) has approved the program. CBU is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Our Baccalaureate program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Q: Are you on a semester or quarter system?
A: CBU has three semesters: fall, spring, and summer.
Q: How much does the program cost?
A: Please refer to the Tuition and Fees page. In addition to the tuition costs, there is a nursing program fee of $1500 per semester. Additional expenses will be required to maintain clinical clearance. This amount does not include room, board or textbooks.
Q: Does admission as a pre-nursing student guarantee acceptance to the BSN program?
A: No, pre-nursing students must apply to the College of Nursing and meet the other admissions criteria for consideration.
Q: When do classes start for the BSN program?
A: Classes start in the spring semester (January) and the fall semester (September) of each year.
Q: Once I complete the prerequisites and other degree requirements, how long is the nursing program?
A: The nursing program is 6 semesters for a total of 3 years. Nursing classes are in session September through April; classes are not offered during the summer semester.
Q: When do you schedule classes and clinical hours?
A: The BSN classes are offered weekdays with possible weekend, evening, and early morning clinical hours. Students are expected to be available as schedules vary each semester.
Q: Do you have an accelerated BSN program?
A: We do not have an accelerated Baccalaureate program at this time.
Q: Do you offer the program part-time or online?
A: Currently the program is only offered full-time; we do not offer an online option.
Q: If I meet all of the requirements will I be accepted to the program?
A: We have more qualified students than spaces available in the BSN program. Meeting the requirements does not guarantee acceptance to the program.
Q: What is the College of Nursing's reputation in the community?
A: The College of Nursing has an excellent reputation in the community as does the university. We anticipate our graduates will be actively recruited by local and state health care providers. CBU is the first four-year regionally and nationally accredited university in the County of Riverside to be approved for such a program.
Q: What is the program's NCLEX pass rate?
A: A high percentage of our students pass the NCLEX exam on the first attempt. The most current BSN program pass rates can be found on the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) website: http://www.rn.ca.gov/education/passrates.shtml
Q: Will I be required to complete clinical rotation hours as part of the program?
A: Yes, all BSN students are required to participate in clinical practicum hours as mandated by the California Board of Registered Nurses (BRN). The CBU College of Nursing meets or exceeds all clinical hour requirements.
Q: Can I work while I am in the BSN program?
A: Applicants are advised that the program requires a very intensive, full-time commitment. It is recommended that you dedicate an adequate amount of time to studying before deciding to work while preparing for licensure.
Q: When will I become a nurse?
A: Upon successful completion of the program, you will prepare for the National Council Licensing Examination (NCLEX) to become licensed as a registered nurse prepared to practice nursing at the bedside in a hospital setting.
Q: How will this degree prepare me to better serve patients?
A: Studies show BSN and master's prepared nurses are more likely to demonstrate professional behaviors important to patient safety including:
- better clinical judgment
- critical thinking skills and problem solving
- performance of complex functions
- effective communication
- early detection of complications and problems in care
Q: Which clinical affiliations do you work with? (partial list)
A: To ensure students receive a variety of clinical experiences, rotations will take place at various hospitals and health care facilities as assigned.
Currently we have clinical partnerships with Corona Regional Medical Center (CRMC); Kaiser Permanente - Fontana, Riverside, Lakeview, Moreno Valley; Loma Linda Veterans Administration (LLVA); Parkview Community Hospital; Patton State Hospital; Riverside Community Hospital (RCH); Riverside County Mental Health In-patient Services; Riverside County Public Health Department; Riverside County Regional Medical Center (RCRMC); San Bernardino County Public Health Department; Arrowhead Regional Medical Center; Ballard Rehab Hospital; Desert Valley Hospital; Eisenhower Medical Center; Menifee Valley Medical Center; Redlands Community Hospital; Saint Mary's Medical Center; San Antonio Hospital; Riverside Medical Clinic; and San Bernardino Community Hospital.
Q: Do you offer an LVN to RN program?
A: Yes, a limited number of units may be substituted from a WASC accredited LVN program for BSN courses however all BSN prerequisites must be met.
Q: I'm a LVN, can I apply to the BSN program?
A: Yes, you can apply to the university as a pre-nursing student in preparation for the BSN program.
Q: How will I know if my LVN courses transfer to CBU?
A: Once you are accepted and enrolled as a CBU nursing student, you will receive an official transcript review by the Program Director. All course syllabi will need to be provided with your BSN application packet.
Q: What is financial aid?
A: Financial aid is any funding a student receives through grants, scholarships, work-study and loans to assist you in paying for college costs.
Q: How do I apply for financial aid?
A: You must submit a FAFSA (Free Application for federal Student Aid) to the Department of Education for the appropriate academic year. www.fafsa.ed.gov
Q: What if I need assistance completing the FAFSA?
A: For tips on completing the FAFSA, please visit www.calbaptist.edu/financialaid
Q: What is your school code for FAFSA?
A: Our school code is 001125
Q: Do you offer scholarships, grants and loans?
A: Undergraduate students at CBU will find the widest range of financial aid available to them, including scholarships, awards and loans.
Q: How do you determine who is eligible for scholarships?
A: Scholarships are based upon merit, achievement, anticipated achievement and other factors. Review the criteria for each scholarship for specific details.
Q: Do you have a list of scholarships for nursing students?
A: Please visit the College of Nursing home page for a partial list of nursing scholarships. We recommend you do some research for additional options.
Q: My bachelor's degree is from a foreign university. Do I have to get it evaluated?
A: Yes. Prior to submitting an application to the College of Nursing, applicants must have all foreign transcripts evaluated by a Credential Evaluation Service to confirm their academic equivalency to educational standards of accredited colleges and universities in the United States. Please submit a copy of the evaluation report with your nursing application.
Q: Which credential evaluation service do you recommend?
A: International Education Research Foundation, Inc (IERF)
P.O. Box 3665, Culver City, CA 90231-3655
Office: 310- 258-9451; Fax: 310-342-7086
Q: I am a registered nurse with a degree from another country. Can I take a class at CBU to fulfill the requirements for RN licensure in California?
A: Currently CBU only allows nursing students who are accepted into the program to take classes. We do not offer any stand alone courses to individuals who are not in the program.
Q: Where can I find more information about applying to CBU as an international student?
A: Please visit our International website.