Department of Nursing (Pre-licensure)

Mission: Providing quality undergraduate and graduate nursing programs that promote academic excellence while integrating the values of truth, virtue, and service.

The Pre-Licensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program offers a faith-based curriculum that provides a solid foundation in liberal education and nursing science, the cornerstone for the practice and education of nurses. Throughout the program, graduates are prepared to take the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Upon successful completion of NCLEX-RN and the BSN degree, the graduate will apply for and be issued a California nursing license [pending Board of Registered Nursing (BRN)]. The graduate RN may then enter professional positions in a variety of healthcare settings with patients of all ages and diverse populations. Baccalaureate graduates are prepared to practice as a generalist across the lifespan and may work as a RN in a variety of community-based and acute care settings.  

Admissions Requirements for PreLicensure Program 

Admission to Vanguard University for Pre-nursing does not guarantee admission into our Pre-licensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Program. After the successful completion of the requirements for the Pre-licensure BSN Program students must subsequently apply for acceptance into our Nursing Program to be considered for program enrollment. Each application will be evaluated; admission is not guaranteed.

Application to the Pre-licensure BSN Program is a competitive process with limited space availability. Under current University policy, a maximum of 32 students are selected annually for Fall admission into the Vanguard University Pre-licensure BSN Program.

Further, admission into the Pre-licensure BSN Program provides the curriculum required for licensure, but does not guarantee that students who obtain a BSN degree will obtain Registered Nurse (RN) licensure. In addition to having a nursing degree, in order to be licensed by the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) and practice nursing in the state of California, one must successfully pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX)-RN exam and pass a criminal background check.

Please be aware that licensure requirements are set by the BRN and that requirements and associated licensing fees can change at any time. Licensure requirements include evidence of the right to work in the United States, such as social security number or taxpayer identification number.

Students are responsible for determining whether or not they meet licensure requirements. Vanguard University will not refund tuition, fees, or any associated costs to students who determine subsequent to admission they cannot meet licensure requirements. Please contact the Department of Nursing Pre-licensure BSN Program for questions concerning all requirements (www.vanguard.edu/nursing)

  1. Critical Thinking/Clinical Reasoning/Clinical Judgment:  Use a systematic approach in assessing, planning, testing, and evaluating innovative and evidence-based solutions to patient care problems across a variety of healthcare settings. 
  2. Integration of Faith and Learning:  Develop and articulate an understanding of a Biblical worldview in integrating values of truth, virtue, and service in personal and professional life and in providing Christ-centered leadership and service.  
  3. Ethical Practice: Demonstrate behaviors that integrate altruism, autonomy, integrity, social justice, and respect for diversity and human dignity across the lifespan. 
  4. Holistic Living:  Demonstrate responsibility and accountability for self and nursing practice, engagement in life-long learning, and ongoing professional growth. 
  5. Communication:  Use communication theories and techniques to promote communication and collaborative relationships with intra-professional healthcare team members, individuals, families, groups, and communities.
  6. Professional Excellence:  Use a problem-solving approach in evaluating patient health status and in advocating for the patient and family, anticipating and reducing risk, and improving health outcomes.
  7. Cultural Competency and Citizenship:  Apply cultural competence theory in the care of diverse individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations across the lifespan and across the continuum of healthcare environments.
  8. Information and Technology Competency:  Demonstrate technology skills in locating, retrieving, applying, and evaluating the integrity of information while using information responsibly and ethically. 
  9. Leadership and Patient Safety:  Apply leadership concepts, skills, decision making, and problem solving in the provision and oversight of nursing practice, and in advocating for equitable health care. 

Pre-Licensure Courses

NRS-302  Fundamentals of Nursing Theory and Practice in Older Adults  3 Credits  

This course introduces the student to the theories of professional nursing practice and the roles of the nurse as provider of care. Biological, psychosocial, and spiritual concepts in the care of older adults experiencing acute or chronic alteration in physical health are introduced. The nursing process will be used as the framework for providing care.

Co-Requisite: NRS-302P

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-302P  Fundamentals of Nursing Theory and Practice in Older Adults Practicum  2 Credits  

This practicum course (90 hours) focuses on application of basic biological, psychosocial, and spiritual concepts in the care of older adults experiencing acute or chronic alteration in physical health within the medical surgical setting and the use of the nursing process in providing care. This course allows the student to perform fundamental nursing skills in a simulated patient care environment and in the health care setting.

Co-Requisite: NRS-302

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-350  Nursing Care of the Adult I  3 Credits  

This theory course focuses on evidence-based concepts, clinical experiences, and applying the nursing process in the provision of optimal care for the adult and older adult patient. An emphasis is placed on the care of the adult and older adult with acute and chronic health problems across a variety of practice settings. NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog.)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-350P  Nursing Care of the Adult I Practicum  3 Credits  

This practicum course provides experiences in the care and management of health and illness for the adult and older adult patient. Students have the opportunity to learn and practice skills associated with the health needs of patients with acute and chronic health problems. Clinical experiences (135 hours- can include simulated, community-based, and acute care environments) will emphasize the development of critical reasoning and nursing judgement.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog.)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-355  Physical Assessment  2 Credits  

This theory course provides the opportunity to learn and practice skills necessary to perform a complete and age appropriate health assessment. Emphasis is placed on assessing physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and cultural needs of the patient. The nursing process will be used in prioritizing patient health care needs. The integration of disease prevention, health promotion, and risk assessment is introduced. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Co-Requisite: NRS-355L

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-355L  Physical Assessment Lab  1 Credit  

This lab course (45 hours) allows the student to perform and practice a complete and age appropriate health assessment skills in a simulated patient care environment.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog.)

Co-Requisite: NRS-355

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-360  Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing  2 Credits  

This theory course provides evidence-based concepts related to the care of patients with psychiatric and mental health disorders. Relevant nursing and interdisciplinary theories will be integrated into the nursing care of diverse individuals, families, groups, and communities in the management of mental illness. Holistic approaches to care and therapeutic communication will be explored. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-360P  Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing Practicum  2 Credits  

Co-Requisite: NRS 360. This practicum course provides experiences (90 hours) in the care and management of the patient with psychiatric and mental health disorders in simulated, community-based, and acute care settings.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-365  Integr Pathophys/Pharmacology  4 Credits  

This course presents pathophysiology, using a systems approach, as applied to current nursing practice. Pharmacological principles such as pharmacokinetics, pharmacotherapeutics, contraindications, adverse effects and drug interactions, and nursing implications will be presented. Major drug classifications will be explored in conjunction with the pathophysiological process.

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-370  Nursing Care of the Adult II  3 Credits  

This theory course will build upon evidence-based concepts learned in NRS-350 . The nursing process will be applied to clients experiencing acute and chronic medical-surgical disease processes. Focuses on concepts related to the physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and cultural needs of the patient and family. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Prerequisite: Take NRS-302 NRS-302P NRS-350 NRS-350P NRS-360 NRS-360PNRS-365;

Co-Requisite: NRS-370P

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-370P  Nursing Care/Adult II Practicum  3 Credits  

This practicum course provides experiences in the care of management of health and illness for the adult and older adult patients and continues to build on experiences learned in NRS-350 and NRS-350P. Students practice skills associated with complex health needs of the adult and older adult with acute and chronic health problems. Clinical experiences (135 hours - can include simulated, community-based, and acute care environments) will focus on use of critical reasoning and clinical decision-making in the care of the adult and older adult with medical-surgical disease processes.

Prerequisite: Take NRS-302 NRS-302P NRS-350 NRS-350P NRS-360 NRS-360PNRS-365;

Co-Requisite: NRS-370

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-375  Maternity and Women's Health  2 Credits  

This theory course provides evidence-based concepts in the care and management of women's health and illness across the lifespan. Focus in on family-centered care, teamwork and collaboration, patient safety, and quality improvements in caring for women and their newborns. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-375P  Maternity and Women's Health Practicum  2 Credits  

This practicum course provides experiences in the care and management of women's health and illness across the lifespan. Focus in on family-centered care, teamwork and collaboration, patient safety, and quality improvement in caring for women and their newborns. Practicum experiences (90 hours) will be spent in simulated, community-based, and acute care environments.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-385  Specialty Residency Elective  1-4 Credits  

This variable unit course provides additional clinical experience for the student in a nursing specialty area. The student will work under the supervision of a registered nurse preceptor in providing direct patient care. Clinical hours are determined by the number of selected units for the course. Course may be repeated once for a maximum of 8 units.

Prerequisite: Take NRS-302 NRS-302P NRS-350 NRS-350P NRS-360 NRS-360PNRS-365 NRS-370 NRS-370P NRS-375 NRS-375P

Terms Typically Offered: Summer.

NRS-400  Nursing Care of the Critically Ill Adult  3 Credits  

This theory course provides evidence-based concepts in caring for the critically and emergently ill adult and older adult. Emphasis is on refining use of the nursing process in the care of patients with multi-system organ disease, complex disease states, and trauma. The student will examine the role of the nurse as a member of the interdisciplinary team and aspects of caring for patients at end-of-life. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-400P  Nursing Care of the Critically Ill Adult Practicum  3 Credits  

The practicum course provides experiences in caring for the critically and emergently ill adult and older adult. Emphasis is on refining use of the nursing process in the care of patients with multi-system organ disease, complex disease states, and trauma. Clinical experiences (135 hours) will be spent in simulated and acute care settings. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

NRS-420  Nursing Care of the Child and Adolescent  2 Credits  

This theory course provides evidence-based concepts in caring for the infant, child, and adolescent experiencing acute and chronic illness. Issues of child abuse and neglect will be explored. The nursing process is integrated in providing age-appropriate care and advocating for infants, children, adolescents, and families. Focuses on collaboration with the child, family, and other members of the health care team in promoting health and adaptation to illness. Lecture format. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Co-Requisite: NRS-420P

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-420P  Nursing Care of the Child and Adolescent Practicum  2 Credits  

This practicum course provides experiences in caring for the infant, child, and adolescent experiencing acute and chronic illness. The nursing process is integrated in providing age-appropriate and culturally-competent care. The course focuses on collaboration with the child, family, and other members of the health care team in promoting health and the adaptation to illness. Clinical experiences (90 hours) will be spent in simulated, community-based, and acute care environments.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Co-Requisite: NRS-420

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-460  Leadership and Management  2 Credits  

This theory course explores theories of leadership/management. Emphasizes the importance of accountability, advocacy, communication, interprofessional collaboration in the leadership role, as well as the importance of promoting optimal patient care outcomes. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components for 3 credits; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-465  Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice  3 Credits  

This course examines sources of evidence, scientific inquiry, and data collection processes related to nursing research, theory development, and evidence-based practice. Students will critically appraise quantitative and qualitative research and learn how these findings are relevant to ensuring optimal patient care outcomes. The course also includes an introduction to data entry and analysis and the role that informatics plays in nursing research. This course is offered online only.

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-468  Community and Public Health Nursing  2 Credits  

This theory course provides evidence-based concepts in caring for individuals, families, and populations in the community and public health settings. Issues such as child abuse and family violence will be explored. The theory course and practicum experiences (90 hours) qualifies the BSN graduate for Public Health Nursing certification. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components for 5 credits; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Co-Requisite: NRS-468P

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-468P  Community/Public Health Nursing Practicum  2 Credits  

This practicum course provides experiences in caring for individuals, families, and populations in the community and public health settings. Issues such as child abuse and family violence will be explored. Practicum experiences (90 hours) will be spent in simulated, and community-based experiences, which qualifies the BSN graduate for Public Health Nursing certification.(NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Co-Requisite: NRS-468

Terms Typically Offered: Fall.

NRS-475  Nursing Capstone and Preceptorship  2 Credits  

This capstone course focuses on the application of evidence-based concepts of nursing and related coursework in the care of selected populations. The course aims to ease the role transition from a student nurse to a beginning professional nurse. Scheduled meetings and seminar will provide the opportunity for guided discussions and review of concepts learned throughout the program in preparation for the RN Licensure Examination. (NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-475P  Nursing Capstone and Preceptorship Practicum  2 Credits  

This practicum experience aims to ease the role transition from a student nurse to a beginning professional nurse and enrich the skill and practice knowledge of the student in preparation for the RN Licensure Examination. This practicum experience (90 hours) will further expose students to the complexities of multiple nursing roles. NOTE: This course previously combined the lecture and lab components; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.

NRS-480  Ethical Issues and Holistic Care  3 Credits  

This course offers an introduction to Christian nursing in the context of the mission of Vanguard University. Topics will include the history of Christian nursing, application of Christian values to healthcare, and the provision of spiritual care to patients and their families. This class will also look at ethical issues, including ethical decision making applicable to health care issues. Lecture format. (formerly titled Nursing Faithfully for two credits; see 2019 Academic Catalog)

Terms Typically Offered: Spring.