Academic Program

Whether your career goals include working in a hospital after graduation, pursuing graduate studies to become a family nurse practitioner, or moving on to doctoral work, Ball State’s nursing major will put you on the road to success working in hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics, providers' offices, or home health care facilities.

In years past, Ball State nursing graduates have annual pass rates of 94 to 100 percent on the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). And employers routinely tell us that our graduates are very well prepared for their profession.

Our students' successes are thanks to a blend of intense lecture material with practical clinical experience. You will work with high-fidelity simulators that create a real-life experience in our million-dollar campus labs. In addition, you'll get to apply your nursing skills in various clinical sites throughout east-central Indiana.

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Nationally Recognized

Our program is recognized by the National League for Nursing (NLN) Center of Excellence in Nursing Education. We rank among an elite group of programs that are recognized for enhancing student learning and professional development. Learn more.

Ball State is enabling me to attain my goal of working in my local community on a nationwide epidemic. I’m tackling both clinical research and a direct community initiative.

—Hannah Fluhler
Nursing and Pre-Dance/Movement Major
Read about her work to aid newborns suffering from drug withdrawal.

What It’s Like to Major in Nursing at Ball State

Program Requirements

You may complete your nursing degree through one of four concentrations, depending on your existing education and how quickly you plan to progress through our program.

You will take the skills you learn in the laboratory and apply them to real clinical settings under the supervision of nursing faculty. As you progress through the nursing curriculum, you will be exposed to clients across their lifespan in acute, chronic, and rehabilitation states. Throughout the program, you will also master a variety of computer skills.

During your last semester, you’ll take our unique critical care course. You’ll work directly with a nurse in various areas of practice, bringing together all the concepts you’ve learned from the foundational medical-surgical courses.

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The baccalaureate degree program in nursing, master’s degree program in nursing, and Doctor of Nursing at Ball State University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (

Pre-Licensure Concentrations

The regular concentration is a traditional four-year, on-campus concentration that prepares graduates for licensure to work in both structured and unstructured healthcare settings.

You’ll begin clinical study in your sophomore year with an introduction to basic nursing concepts and health care appraisal courses.

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This accelerated concentration allows you to complete your degree in three years rather than four.

As a student, you’ll receive the same high-quality instruction and real-world learning opportunities as our four-year concentration, preparing you for licensing as a medical professional.

If your future plans include a master’s degree or doctoral work, this accelerated program is an excellent precursor.

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Do you already have a bachelor’s degree and want a condensed, accelerated pathway to earn a second bachelor’s degree in nursing? Consider our 19-month track, which will prepare you for the same licensing requirements as our regular concentration.

This accelerated program will prepare you to succeed whether you’re looking at moving into a nursing career or onto graduate-level work.

Students entering this program must start in the Fall.

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If you’re already a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and want to take the next step to become a Registered Nurse (RN), then Ball State has the perfect pathway for you.

Our LPN to BS concentration allows you to apply your existing experience toward completing your bachelor’s degree in nursing.

Whether your plans include expanding your nursing role in a hospital or other medical setting, or moving on to pursue graduate-level work, this program is an excellent precursor.

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Summer Transition Semester

The summer semester that begins the LPN transition concentration is designed to allow you to acquire and demonstrate the skills and knowledge you would need to master by the end of sophomore year in our regular, four-year concentration.

The semester also allows you to get acclimated to Ball State, the School of Nursing, and the nursing curriculum.

Upon successful completion of the Summer Transition Semester, you will be ready to progress into the junior-year level of the nursing sequence.

Progress through the Program

The associate director of the Baccalaureate Nursing Program will work with you on an individual basis to develop a plan of study, including outlining the prerequisites you need and assisting you in determining the best way to progress through the nursing sequence and complete university Core Curriculum requirements.

The LPN transition concentration allows you to use previously earned science and general studies credits for the baccalaureate program. Other required courses and some elective credits can be transferred from other institutions.

Ball State Core Curriculum courses (general studies courses) may be taken on campus or as independent learning courses (by correspondence) through the School of Extended Education.


Total: 120


A few of the classes you will take include:

  • Introduction to Nursing
  • Health Applications
  • Physical and Mental Health
  • Pediatrics
  • Childbearing

For a complete list of all the courses you will take and their descriptions, please see our Course Catalog.

View Catalog

RN to BS Concentration

If you’re already working as a registered nurse with an associate degree, our RN to BS concentration is an excellent way to make yourself more marketable to employers.

This option—offered entirely online—will give you access to the same faculty in our nationally recognized program while benefiting from the flexibility of its delivery.

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What Can You Do with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing

A bachelor’s degree in nursing prepares you to advance your career as a nurse, or to go on to graduate studies in nursing. This degree will prepare you to work in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals, extended care facilities, clinics, homes, and community health agencies. Upon graduation, students are eligible to sit for National Council Licensure Examination for RN licensure (NCLEX-RN®).

You may pursue a career or further education as a/an:

  • Registered Nurse
  • Nurse Practitioner
  • Postsecondary Nursing Instructor
  • Nurse Anesthetist

Paying for Your Education

Apply to Ball State

Admission to Ball State is selective, and we carefully evaluate all applications on an individual basis. Applying is easy. Use our convenient, comprehensive, and secure online application.

Apply Now

Want to Learn More?

The best way to get a true feel for Ball State is to spend some time here, so we encourage you and your family to schedule a campus visit. Take a tour, attend an information session, meet with a professor in our area, and ask plenty of questions. Or if you’d rather speak to someone directly by phone or email, please feel free to contact us.