Nursing, BSN

Penn Nursing combines the resources and opportunities of a large university with the intimacy and personal attention of a small college. Our traditional four-year BSN is a direct-entry program for graduating high school seniors.

At Penn Nursing, you will learn from a passionate faculty whose accomplishments are recognized worldwide. You will benefit from the academic opportunities of an Ivy League university while enjoying a fun and fulfilling campus life. You will gain clinical experience in some of the nation’s top hospitals, located just steps from your classrooms. And you will have the chance to participate in faculty-driven research, supported by state-of-the-art technology. Penn Nursing graduates are the leaders shaping the future of health care practice, policy, research, and education.

The nursing program integrates science, nursing, and liberal arts education to prepare future nurses with skills necessary for caring for diverse, complex patients, families and communities. Students are encouraged to take advantage of the many educational opportunities at Penn that intersect with the four undergraduate schools. For traditional students, clinicals begin in the spring of your sophomore year, and students have experiences in primary care, acute care, women’s health, and mental health settings working with patients from newborns to older adults.

Nursing, BSN Requirements

Non-Nursing Major Requirements
Writing Requirement
Select a Writing Intensive Course1
Language Requirement
Satisfy by exemption or if language proficiency completed in fewer than 2 semesters, use remaining course units as free electives2
Distribution by Sectors
The Planet & Our Climate1
Societies, Histories, and Traditions1
Global Arts, Letters, & Cultures1
Diversity, Universality, Justice, & Equity1
Exploration Course Requirement - a course in any School within the University other than the School of Nursing, at any level for which the student is eligible and in any discipline1
Nursing Major Courses
Nursing Foundational Courses
NURS 1010The Nature of Nursing Practice0.5
NURS 1020Situating the Practice of Nursing0.5
NURS 1030Psychological and Social Diversity in Health and Wellness1
Nursing Clinical Courses
NURS 2150Nursing of Women and Infants1.5
NURS 2250Pediatric Nursing1.5
NURS 2350Psychiatric, Behavioral, and Mental Health Nursing1.5
NURS 2450Nursing of Young and Middle Aged Adults1.5
NURS 2550Nursing of Older Adults1.5
NURS 3820Public Health Nursing Care in Communities1.5
NURS 3900Leadership in the Complex Healthcare System3
Science Requirements
NURS 0061Biologically-Based Chemistry0.5
NURS 0065Fundamentals of Nutrition1
NURS 0068Integrated Cell Biology and Microbiology with Recitation1
NURS 1630Integrated Anatomy, Physiology, and Physical Assessment I2
NURS 1640Integrated Human Anatomy, Physiology & Physical Assessment II2
NURS 1650Integrated Pathophysiology, Pharmacology, and Therapeutics2
Non-Clinical Courses
Health Policy Requirement
NURS 3340Public Policy and the Nation's Health1
or NURS 4000 Advances In Health Systems Research And Analysis
or NURS 5400 Current Issues In Health and Social Policy
NURS 2300Statistics for Research and Measurement1
NURS 5470Scientific Inquiry for Evidence-based Practice1
Ethics Requirement
NURS 3300Theoretical Foundations of Health Care Ethics1
or PHIL 1342 Bioethics
or NURS 5250 Ethical Aspects of Health and Technology
or BIOE 4010 Introduction to Bioethics
or BIOE 4020 Conceptual Foundations of Bioethics
Nursing Case Study Select from among NURS 3510-NURS 3690.1
NURS 3890Research/Inquiry-Based Service Residency0.5
Total Course Units36

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2024 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.

The following sample Plan of Study is just one possibility for undergraduate study. This plan may not be compatible with several academic options you might choose (e.g., study abroad, submatriculation, dual degree, etc.). If you are interested in pursuing any of the special academic options available to you during the course of your undergraduate experience and want to know how this will alter your plan of study, please contact your faculty advisor and/or the Office of Student Services at 215-898-6687 or Please note that all plans of study are subject to curricular change.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FallCourse Units
NURS 0061 Biologically-Based Chemistry 0.5
NURS 0068 Integrated Cell Biology and Microbiology with Recitation 1
NURS 1010 The Nature of Nursing Practice 0.5
Critical Writing Requirement 1
Language Requirement (or free elective if level II proficiency met) 1
 Course Units4.00
NURS 0065 Fundamentals of Nutrition 1
NURS 1630 Integrated Anatomy, Physiology, and Physical Assessment I 2
NURS 1020 Situating the Practice of Nursing 0.5
Sector Requirement (e.g. The Planet & Our Climate) 1 1
Language Requirement (or free elective if level II proficiency met) 2 1
 Course Units5.50
Second Year
NURS 1640 Integrated Human Anatomy, Physiology & Physical Assessment II 2
NURS 1030 Psychological and Social Diversity in Health and Wellness 1
Sector Requirement (e.g. Societies, Histories, & Traditions) 1
 Course Units4.00
NURS 1650 Integrated Pathophysiology, Pharmacology, and Therapeutics 2
NURS 2150 Nursing of Women and Infants 1.5
Sector Requirement (e.g. Global Arts, Letters, & Cultures) 1
 Course Units4.50
Third Year
NURS 2450
NURS 2550
Nursing of Young and Middle Aged Adults
and Nursing of Older Adults
Select one of the following: 1
Public Policy and the Nation's Health (or approved Health Policy course) 3  
Theoretical Foundations of Health Care Ethics (or approved Health Care Ethics course) 4  
NURS 2300 Statistics for Research and Measurement 1
 Course Units5.00
NURS 2350
NURS 2250
Psychiatric, Behavioral, and Mental Health Nursing
and Pediatric Nursing
Select one of the following: 1
Public Policy and the Nation's Health (or approved Health Policy course)  
Theoretical Foundations of Health Care Ethics (or approved Health Care Ethics course)  
NURS 5470 Scientific Inquiry for Evidence-based Practice 1
 Course Units5.00
Fourth Year
NURS 3820 Public Health Nursing Care in Communities 1.5
Select 1 course from NURS 3550-NURS 3680 1
Sector Requirement (e.g. Diversity, Universality, Justice, & Equity) 1
Sector Requirement (e.g. Exploration Course) 1
 Course Units4.50
NURS 3900 Leadership in the Complex Healthcare System 3
NURS 3890 Research/Inquiry-Based Service Residency 0.5
 Course Units3.50
 Total Course Units36.00

Sector requirements can be taken in any order. For more information on sector requirements, refer to the BSN Handbook.


Free electives and language requirement courses may be taken pass/fail. For more detailed information on pass/fail policies, refer to the Pass/Fail section in the BSN handbook.

The Nursing Case Study can be taken during the junior or senior year (following completion of NURS 1640 Integrated Human Anatomy, Physiology & Physical Assessment II). Only one course is required from the case study group.

Students must consult with an academic advisor prior to making revisions to the plan of study to ensure that the necessary curricular requirements are being met and to prevent delays in academic progression.