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Texas A&M Health Science Center

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FAQs


Q. What is a health science center?
A. Most of the health science centers in Texas are indeed based in one location that generally includes a teaching hospital or clinical facility. The University of Texas System health science centers in San Antonio, Galveston and Houston, for example, follow this single-location model. The Texas A&M Health Science Center, on the other hand, offers many of the same degree programs and training facilities as those other institutions do, but on a "distributed" (geographically dispersed) model. The Texas A&M Health Science Center has six components in various locations in Texas – Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry, the College of Medicine, the College of Nursing, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Institute of Biosciences and Technology, the Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy and the School of Rural Public Health – and two centers, the Coastal Bend Health Education Center and the South Texas Center.

Q. What degree opportunities are available through the College of Nursing?
A. We currently offer three tracks to a Bachelor Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) as well as an MSN:  traditional BSN, second degree BSN, RN-to-B.S.N. and an MSN in Nursing Education. Our traditional and second degree programs are offered in Bryan-College Station; the second degree program is also offered in Round Rock. The RN-to-B.S.N.  and the MSN in Nursing Education are both offered online.  The program initially will accept nurses with a B.S.N., with future plans to offer an RN-to-M.S.N. for registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma who wish to obtain an advanced degree.

Graduate programs that are planned for the very near future include: Family Nurse Practitioner and Clinical Nurse Specialist.  Please refer to the TAMHSC website for updates on these programs as they become available.

Q. Where are you located?
A. We currently have campuses in Bryan-College Station and Round Rock.

Q. How do I become a registered nurse?
A. Students who complete the undergraduate program will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in nursing (B.S.N.) and are then eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN). Upon successful completion of the NCLEX-RN, students are awarded their Registered Nurse license.

Q. I already have a bachelor’s degree. How long will it take me to get my B.S.N.?
A. Applicants will be admitted to the second degree program once each year to begin course work in January. Completion of 25 semester credit hours of prerequisite course work is required to apply. All required nursing courses and clinical experiences will be completed in 15 months. Upon graduation, students will be eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

Q. I am in still in high school. Can I apply directly to the program to enter as a college freshman?
No. Entry into the program requires completion of the prerequisite courses from another institution followed by application to the nursing program.

Q. How many students does the College of Nursing admit?
A. A total of 90 B.S.N. full-time students were admitted in 2012: 40 second degree and 50 traditional. Of the 40 students admitted for the second degree program, 20 were admitted from the Round Rock location. The college admits up to 50 RN-to-B.S.N. students each application cycle.

Q. Is there a minimum GPA requirement to apply?
A. It is strongly recommended that applicants have a 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) on all college work and a minimum grade of "C" is required in each of the pre-nursing courses. Both the Overall GPA as well as the Nursing Science GPA will be considered. The courses used to calculate the Nursing Science GPA include: mathematics, lifespan growth & development, nutrition, A&P I & II, chemistry and microbiology.

Q. How can I get an application?
A. The College of Nursing requires the NursingCAS application. For more information on admission requirements, please visit the program track page you are interested in - traditional, second degree, RN-to-B.S.N. and M.S.N.

Q. Is an entrance test required?
A. Yes. Traditional, Second Degree, and Select applicants must take the HESI A2 Admissions Assessment Exam. RN-to-B.S.N. and M.S.N. applicants are not required to take an entrance test.

Q. Are letters of recommendation required?
A. Each applicant may submit up to three references through the NursingCAS application. For those applying to the traditional and the second degree programs, it is preferred that one reference come from a professor, if possible. For those applying to the RN-to-B.S.N. program, one reference must come from your current or most recent immediate supervisor. For those applying to the M.S.N. program, three professional/academic references are required.

Q. What is the deadline for applications and required credentials?
A. Application deadlines are posted on the individual program tract pages - traditional, second degree, RN-to-B.S.N. and M.S.N.

Q. Is a supplemental application required?
A. Yes. Once all of your credentials have been verified by NursingCAS, you will receive an email that directs you to the TAMHSC-BAMF admissions portal. Additional information will be requested at that time. Applicants must have sent in all documents to NursingCAS by the deadline in order to move to this step in the application process. You will have two weeks from the date you receive the email directing you to the TAMHSC-BAMF admissions portal to complete the supplemental application. It can take up to 6 weeks after submitting your NursingCAS application before you receive this email from the BAMF admissions portal.

Q. What are the prerequisite courses for the traditional B.S.N. degree?
A. Traditional prerequisites include courses in English, history, government, psychology, philosophy, math, human development, nutrition, anatomy, physiology, microbiology and chemistry. For more details regarding course work, visit the traditional program page.

Q. What are the prerequisite courses for the second degree program?
A. Second Degree prerequisites include mandatory Texas common core curriculum courses and 25 hours of Nursing Science courses in human development, math, nutrition, anatomy, physiology, microbiology and chemistry. For more details regarding coursework, visit the second degree program page. 

Q. Do all of the prerequisite courses have to be completed before I can apply to your programs?
A. No. Students must have 38 hours of the prerequisite coursework completed prior to the application deadline, 11 hours of which must come from a combination of math, anatomy, physiology, microbiology, or chemistry. Any outstanding prerequisites may be in progress during the application period but must be completed prior to the start of classes for the program. Students will be required to list all course work planned or in progress on the application. Acceptance offers will be contingent on successful completion of all of these courses with a grade of “C” or better.

Q. Where should I take the prerequisite courses?
A. Any accredited two- or four-year college or university is acceptable, but an institution with strong science departments is suggested.

Q. Do prerequisite courses have to be completed within the past 5 years?
A. No. There is no restriction on the age of courses. However, if it has been a significant amount of time since prerequisite courses have been completed, we strongly encourage students to at least review the material, especially for nursing science courses.

Q. Can I apply for the M.S.N. program during the semester in which I am completing my B.S.N.?
A. Yes. Students may apply for our M.S.N. in nursing education during the semester they are finishing coursework for the B.S.N. degree.

Q. Do you require a minimum number of practice years as a condition of admission to the M.S.N. program?
A. No. There is no minimum number of practice years required for admission to our M.S.N. in nursing education program.

Q. Can someone evaluate my transcripts before I apply to determine if my coursework will transfer into the program?
A. No. Students must apply to the program and submit all required documents, including transcripts from previous institutions. At that time, an analysis will be completed of the transfer credits. Those students applying from schools in the state of Texas may refer to the Texas Common Course Numbering System to compare course work among institutions within the state.

Q. When will I be notified of my admission's decision?
A. Students will be notified in late October for spring applicants and early April for summer applicants. Notification is electronic via the admissions portal. Admission status and wait list placement will not be given through email or by phone.

Q. Will I be able to work while enrolled in the upper-division curriculum?
A. It is possible, although highly discouraged, for traditional and second degree students to work part-time while enrolled in the upper-division curriculum. The coursework and course load in this sequence are very strenuous and require an extensive amount of study and preparation. Also, placements in clinical courses change each semester as far as days and times, which makes it difficult for students to coordinate their work schedules. If you are considering working, please speak with an academic advisor.

Q. Can I participate in the program on a part-time basis?
A. Students admitted to the traditional or second degree program must be full-time students. Those admitted to the RN-to-B.S.N. and M.S.N. program will follow a curriculum that can be adapted to their work schedule in many cases and have the option of choosing a full-time or part-time schedule.

Q. If I want to attend Texas A&M University to complete my prerequisite courses, what should I list as a major since nursing is not a choice?
A. Students may select any major at Texas A&M University as long as they can complete the required prerequisite courses before their desired start date with the College of Nursing. Some common majors students select while pursuing their prerequisite coursework are Allied Health, Community Health, Psychology, and Sociology. If you are considering completing another degree from Texas A&M University prior to coming to the College of Nursing for a B.S.N., then suggested majors include: Allied Health, Community Health, Biomedical Science, Biology, Kinesiology, Nutrition, Psychology, Sociology, Management, or Forensic & Investigative Sciences. Regardless of your specified major, you must complete the nursing prerequisites in order to be admitted to the program. Please speak with an advisor for more information.

Q. Can I earn the Aggie Ring if I attend the Health Science Center?
A. Every student that receives a Texas A&M University diploma will be eligible to receive an Aggie Ring. Many of our students will be eligible to order, receive and wear their ring before they officially graduate.  In some cases, like the RN-to-B.S.N., the students will not be able to order their ring until they graduate (on commencement day). A timeline for order and delivery of rings may be found by visiting the Aggie Network website.

Q. Am I allowed to repeat coursework to improve my grade? How will repeated courses be averaged in to my GPA?
A. Students will be allowed to repeat coursework in order to receive a higher grade. We will allow the grade earned on a second attempt of a course to “stand on top of” the initial grade. The first attempt of the course will be removed from the GPA calculation and not averaged in with the new grade. However, if a student makes a third attempt of the same course we will still only use the higher grade of the first two attempts. All subsequent attempts at the course will be removed from the GPA calculation. The initial graded attempt will not be replaced in the GPA calculation until the second graded attempt is completed.


For more information, please contact an advisor in the Office of Student Affairs

Last edited by: rhinesmith 08/12/2014


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