Prelicensure Nursing Programs Information and PoliciesDownload PDF
Prelicensure Nursing Programs Administration, Faculty, and Staff
The College employs faculty, who facilitate learning via various distance and on-ground education delivery methodologies, and staff, who provide learner support.
See the Officers, Management, Faculty, and Staff section of the College website for comprehensive lists of administration, faculty, and staff.
Acceptance Notification and Matriculation Requirements
The Registrar or designee evaluates all complete applications and offers written acceptance to qualified applicants. Learners are considered conditionally accepted and/or enrolled until all matriculation requirements are met.
Upon receiving the letter of acceptance, the applicant must complete the following matriculation requirements within the deadlines set by Admissions. Instructions for completing these requirements will be included in the acceptance letter:
- If they are requesting transfer of credit, applicants must submit official college and/or military transcripts for the previous coursework to: The Registrar, Nightingale College, 95 South State Street, Suite 400, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111. Any non-U.S. documents must be translated into English (if applicable) and evaluated by a certified academic credentials evaluation service. For additional information, see the Registrar.
- Complete the Learner Funding process and submit all required documentation.
- Sign the College Enrollment Agreement (prior to enrollment).
To matriculate into any academic program, all new learners must complete the mandatory two (2) week College Readiness Orientation Seminar (CROS). Failure to complete the CROS will result in the rescindment of the academic program acceptance and enrollment. The scheduled dates for the mandatory College Readiness Online Seminar are published in the Academic Calendar section of the College Catalog.
To matriculate into the prelicensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program, all advanced placement LPN/LVN learners as well as learners requesting transfer of pharmacology academic credit must successfully complete Nightingale College’s Medical Dosage Calculation (MDC) self-paced, non-facilitated online course, and score 100% on all MDC quizzes by the deadline set by Admissions as part of the enrollment process. Learners are limited to three (3) attempts to pass each of the quizzes. The MDC course is available to all prospective and current learners by requesting access from the Admissions Advisor. Learners who fail to pass all MDC course quizzes must enroll in the corresponding pharmacology course, and their enrollment into lower-division nursing core courses with experiential learning components will be postponed until successful completion of the pharmacology course.
Learner credentialing at Nightingale College consists of maintaining compliance with background checks, drug screening, immunizations, trainings, and other requirements specified by the College and DFC and IP sites assigned to the learner, to participate in Supervised On-Ground Field Experiences (SOFE). The College’s credential requirements are posted within the third-party vendor’s secure online portal. Learners are expected to maintain compliance with the third-party vendor throughout enrollment in the academic program and are responsible for all fees associated with the credentialing requirements.
To be eligible for continued enrollment in the program and matriculation through nursing courses, learners must complete all credentialing requirements as listed in the College Catalog or found within the third-party portal no later than forty-five (45) calendar days prior to the first day of the semester. In rare circumstances, a learner may request to add a course with a SOFE component upon completion of the credentialing requirements after the deadline but prior to the start of the semester; however, enrollment in the course is not guaranteed.
Credentialing requirements include, but are not limited to, the following items:
- Provide the required immunization and medical screening records (see below). Instructions for these items will be provided with the enrollment acceptance letter and must be submitted to the College’s third-party vendor. Learners are responsible for creating an account with the third-party vendor for submission of credentialing documents and for maintaining communication with the vendor to ensure continued compliance. Learners also are responsible for initiating the background check and drug screen processes through the third-party vendor. The College’s staff are unable to assist learners with completing this process.
- Provide a current American Heart Association Basic Life Support (CPR and AED) certification. Certification must be at the healthcare provider level (BLS) and must include an in-person component. Online-only certifications will not be accepted.
- Pay for, complete, and pass a criminal background check within 120, but no later than 45, days prior to the first day of the academic semester which includes the learner’s first course with the Supervised On-ground Field Experience (SOFE) components. Only background checks initiated by the third-party vendor are valid. Note: Certain SOFE sites may require additional background checks.
- Pay for, complete, and pass a 10-panel drug screening within 120, but no later than 45, days prior to the first day of the academic semester which includes the learner’s first course with the Supervised On-ground Field Experience (SOFE) components.
Note: Enrolled learners will be classified as non-matriculated until all matriculation requirements are met. Failure to meet the requirements by the specified deadlines may result in the rescindment of the program acceptance and/or withdrawal from the College with the learner being responsible for payment of any earned tuition and fees.
To ensure compliance, learners are expected to check compliance regularly throughout their enrollment in the program with the third-party vendor. After the start of a semester, learners may be required to update or complete additional credentialing requirements. Depending on the assigned SOFE site requirements, these may include fingerprints, immunizations, screening processes, or other documentation. Schedule Support will send instructions for the completion of these requirements to learners via email correspondence.
Outcomes for failure to complete SOFE site credentialing requirements differ between Direct Focused Client Care (DFCs) or Integrated Practicum (IPs) as described below.
Outcomes for Failure to Meet DFC Credentialing Requirements:
A learner scheduled at a DFC site with unique credentialing requirements must complete all requirements by the deadline(s) noted in email correspondence. Failure to complete credential requirements by the specified deadline may result in an absence for the scheduled DFC or a withdrawal from the course. The absence is subject to the EL-DFC Absences During the Semester policy.
Outcomes for Failure to Meet IP Credentialing Requirements:
Learners who fall out of compliance are required to stop attending any IP activity until compliance is regained. Failure to complete credential compliance by the end of the semester will result in a grade of Incomplete for the course. Continued failure to resolve the compliance issues resulting in the Incomplete grade will result in a failing grade as stated in the policy for Incomplete grades in the Grades section of the Catalog.
- Tuberculosis (TB) skin test –Learners must complete an initial two-step PPD skin test within six (6) months of
the first day of the academic semester which includes the learner’s first course with
the Supervised On-ground Field Experience (SOFE) components. After the initial two-step
PPD skin test with negative results, yearly one-step PPD skin tests are required.
A two – step PPD is completed by having the first PPD skin test placed, then having that result read within 48 – 72 hours from the placement date and time. THEN, the learner will have their second PPD skin test placed 7-18 days from the date in which the first PPD skin test was “read.” The result of the second PPD must be read within 48-72 hours of the placement date and time of the second PPD skin test.If the learner has a positive result, history of a prior positive result or received a BCG vaccination in the past, a proof of a negative chest X-ray, performed within the last six (6) months, and a clearance letter on official letterhead or form from a physician stating that the learner has had no signs of symptoms of TB within the last year, are required. Chest X-Rays performed for a positive PPD test will be honored for five (5) years from read date. Lastly, if the learner’s provider denies the request for a chest X-ray, the learner is permitted to receive a yearly QuantiFERON with documentation of negative result along with a written request from the provider.
- Varicella – Proof of immunity (serologic titer), or prior vaccination with two (2) doses of varicella vaccine, given at least four (4) weeks apart, is required.
- Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) – Documentation of vaccination with two (2) doses of MMR given at least four (4) weeks apart or proof of immunity (serologic titer), is required.
- Influenza – Annual seasonal influenza (flu) vaccinations are Documentation must specify the current season to be accepted.
- COVID-19 – Proof of full immunization, including boosters after the recommended intervals, is required to attend any Supervised On-ground Field Experiences (SOFE).
- Hepatitis B – Completed two- or three-dose immunization series and proof of immunity (serologic titer) are required. If beginning the HepB series, the learner must have evidence of the first dose 45 days before the academic semester which includes the learner’s first course with the Supervised On-ground Field Experience (SOFE) components and complete the series and proof of immunity (serologic titer) by the end of the second academic semester which includes courses with the Supervised On-ground Field Experience (SOFE) components. Learners must remain on schedule with dosing to attend Supervised On-ground Field Experiences (SOFE). Learners who do not develop immunity to Hepatitis B following two immunization series (confirmed with documentation of both series and two negative serologic titers), must sign a waiver to continue enrollment in the prelicensure
Note: Some Supervised On-ground Field Experiences (SOFE) sites may not accept the waiver, which may prevent the learner from continuing enrollment in the Program.
- Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (TdaP) – Proof of completed childhood 3-dose immunization series, if available, and a Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis) booster within the last ten (10) years are required; this must be renewed every 10 years. Some Supervised On-ground Field Experiences (SOFE) sites may require titers as
Note: In the interest of public safety, no immunization waivers will be granted for any reason, other than as described above. Failure to comply with the above requirements may jeopardize the learner’s ability to attend Supervised On-ground Field Experiences (SOFE) and prevent continued enrollment in the Program. Instructions for completing immunization requirements will be provided with the enrollment acceptance letter.
In compliance with the College’s clinical partners’ requirements, evidence of health insurance must be provided for all prelicensure learners. Learners without health insurance may be denied access to clinical facilities and therefore may be unable to complete prelicensure nursing programs. The learner assumes all financial responsibility associated with their healthcare.
Learning Modalities Definitions in Prelicensure Nursing Programs
Grounded in the findings of the 2009 Carnegie Foundation National Study of Nursing Education, the design of the College’s prelicensure nursing programs targets the development of the three (3) high-end apprenticeships: cognitive, practical, and ethical. The College’s prelicensure nursing programs’ curricula design provides for the lockstep scheduling of didactic, intervention skills, and virtual experiential learning activities, while allowing the on-ground components to be delivered at any point during a given course. Each of the College’s prelicensure nursing programs’ learning modalities is described below.
Online Didactic Learning
Didactic learning occurs online, is concept-based, and develops the cognitive apprenticeship, or the theoretical knowledge base required for practice.
- Concept-Based Theory (CBT): Conceptual learning is an educational method that centers on big-picture ideas and learning how to organize and categorize information. Unlike traditional learning models which concentrate on the ability to recall specific facts with rote memorization, conceptual learning focuses on understanding of broader principles or ideas (concepts) that can be applied to a variety of specific situations. Conceptual learning engages learners in thinking critically about new subjects and situations, developing sound reasoning abilities by comparing new situations to previous encounters.
- Intervention Skill-Based Preparation (ISBP): Conceptual learning that focuses on preparing the learner for participation in intervention skill-based learning.
- Virtual Case-Based Preparation (VCBP): Conceptual learning that focuses on preparing the learner for participation in case-based experiential learning.
- Intervention Skill-Based (ISB): Builds proficiency in the “know-how” and “know-why” of competent clinical practice, while developing the practical apprenticeship. These experiences are conducted asynchronously in a remote environment through video conferencing technologies and course-specific skills kits, which promote the acquisition of psychomotor, communication, teaching, advocacy, coaching, and interpersonal skills.
Experiential learning (EL) involves the application of previously studied theories and skills and is targeted toward the development of sound clinical reasoning and strong ethical comportment, the third high-end apprenticeship. EL occurs in both simulated and live clinical environments, at an approximately 50/50 ratio, and is divided between online experiential learning and on-ground supervised field experiences.
Virtual Experiential Learning
Virtual Case-Based Client Care (VCBC): Provides learners with an authentic experience for the application of previously studied theories and skills to clinical reasoning in a virtual, simulated clinical environment under the supervision of faculty. Each care experience is assigned a focus that invites the learner to apply skills and clinical reasoning to client care. Learners learn to establish and nurture the clinician-client relationship and integrate the ethics of caring for individuals while developing sound clinical reasoning.
Applied Field Experience Learning
- Applied Field Experience (AFE): Applied field experience activities include community- or practice-based application of previously acquired knowledge and skills and require submission of written assignments based on this application.
Supervised On-Ground Field Experiences
- Direct Focused Client Care (DFC): Provides learners with an authentic experience for the application of previously studied theories and skills to clinical reasoning in a live, on-ground clinical environment and healthcare facility under supervision of faculty. Each care experience is assigned a focus that invites the learner to apply skills and clinical reasoning to client care. Learners learn to establish and nurture the clinician-client relationship and integrate the ethics of caring for individuals, while developing sound clinical reasoning.
- Integrative Practicum (IP): With faculty oversight, provides opportunity for the learner to apply all elements of prior learning in authentic clinical practice situations while beginning the transition into practice. Rather than being assigned to a client, the learner works directly with a practicing clinician to provide client care. The learner integrates knowledge, clinical reasoning, and program competencies while providing client care and assimilating into the practitioner role in an organizational environment.
Experiential Learning (EL) Schedules
The College creates Experiential Learning (EL) schedules in partnership with healthcare agencies and, therefore, does not have full control over the schedules, which are subject to multiple externalities. The College cannot guarantee the times, days, particular faculty, placement in a specific EL site, or geographic area for Direct Focused Client Care (DFCs) or integrative practicum (IP). Experiential learning may be scheduled during nights and weekends.
Regardless of their residence, learners may be required to travel to an assigned SOFE site(s) located anywhere in the United States, during any semester in which the learner is enrolled in a nursing course with a SOFE component. Travel may be scheduled at any time during the semester. Learners assigned to travel for their IP assignment will receive notification of their IP schedules two (2) to four (4) weeks prior to the tentative start date when site confirmation permits. Notification is based on site confirmation of schedule availability, requirements, and learner capacity. Learners may enroll in only one (1) prelicensure nursing course with experiential learning components during any academic semester. Based on the requirements for the course in which they are enrolled, learners who must travel to their assigned site may be required to spend between four (4) to twenty-five (25) days in the assigned region. Placements may include breaks between scheduled on-ground days. Learners who are not traveling for their DFC SOFE assignments may be required to spend one to two (1-2) days per week for up to eight (8) weeks at their assigned site. Learners who are not traveling for their IP SOFE assignments may be required to spend two to four (2-4) days per week for up to eight (8) weeks at their assigned site.
Learners are responsible to pay for transportation and lodging expenses associated with SOFE travel. However, the College will pay learners’ SOFE-related regular travel expenses if the following conditions are met:
- The learner matriculated into a prelicensure nursing program prior to Spring Semester 2023;
- The learner both resides within and was originally assigned to a specific SOFE area;
- The expenses were incurred during regular SOFE travel and were not incurred from a make-up session that was scheduled due to the learner’s absence from the previously scheduled SOFE session.
Learners may use the College’s contracted third-party travel vendor to make travel arrangements. Learners are encouraged to obtain traveler’s insurance to assist learners if an unforeseen event were to occur. Detailed information regarding the service will be provided during the semester in which travel is scheduled. Learners may not include travel costs on their learner account ledgers nor have these costs financed through the College. Specific SOFE area assignments are not guaranteed, and learners may be assigned anywhere within the United States.
Typically, no experiential learning activities are scheduled during the first week of an academic semester; however, facility-specific orientations and make-up experiential learning activities may be scheduled. Schedule Support will begin to distribute DFC schedules to learners during the third week of the academic semester. Learners assigned to travel for their DFC assignment will receive notification approximately one (1) month prior to the first day of the assigned DFC as site confirmation permits. Learners who are not traveling for their DFC assignment will receive notification approximately ten (10) days prior to the first day of the assigned DFC as site confirmation permits. For information about notification for rescheduled DFCs, see EL-DFC Absences During the Semester.
Pre-Semester Scheduling Variance Form
The Pre-Semester Scheduling Variance Form is intended to allow learners to request a variance from their DFC scheduling for pre-planned events. The form allows a learner to request a maximum of five (5) cumulative days of variance, either consecutively or intermittently. Schedulers will give consideration to learners who submit pre-semester scheduling variances in blocking out these dates when scheduling DFCs; however, a learner’s pre-semester request may be approved or denied based on site and schedule availability. This form must be submitted at least fourteen (14) calendar days prior to the start of the semester.
The form allows a learner to request a maximum of five (5) cumulative days of variance, either consecutively or intermittently. If the learner will be absent for more than five (5) cumulative days in a semester, the learner must reach out to Schedule Support to discuss further options. Any approved schedule variances only apply to DFC scheduling.
EL-DFC Absences During the Semester:
Learners are allowed one (1) absence from DFCs for each course that has an EL-DFC component.
Learners who miss two (2) or more DFCs during the semester must withdraw from the course and re-enroll the following semester. Learners who miss a DFC activity must complete a scheduled make-up session to pass the course. Learners who complete the required make-up sessions do not reduce their total number of DFC absences recorded for the course. Even when one DFC absence has been made up, a second absence results in being withdrawn from the course. If the second absence is caused by an emergency or catastrophic event, learners can file an Exception Request.
Learners who miss one DFC will receive communication from Schedule Support detailing next steps in the rescheduling process. The missed DFC must be made up by the end of the current semester; otherwise, the learner cannot progress to the next DFC course. However, in rare circumstances when rescheduling a DFC prior to the end of an academic semester is not feasible, learners may receive an ‘IR’ (Incomplete Remediation) in the course and may fulfill the remainder of the DFC by the end of the add/drop period of the following semester without disruption of progression in the academic program. Learners will be notified of the rescheduled DFC no later than two (2) days prior to the make-up date.
Please note: Make-up EL-DFCs are not guaranteed and could delay progress in the academic program or graduation.
Learners are required to arrive to pre-conference fifteen (15) minutes prior to the start of the DFC. Tardiness of more than fifteen (15) minutes or leaving more than fifteen (15) minutes early from any experiential learning activity (ELA) will be marked as an absence. To receive credit for attendance for any virtual ELA or webinar, learners must be present on time, professionally dressed in accordance with the Nightingale College Dress Code policy, with their cameras on at all times unless provided permission from their faculty.
EL-VCBC Absences During the Semester:
Learners are allowed a total of two (2) VCBC absences per course that has a VCBC component. Learners with three (3) or more EL-VCBCs absences during the semester will be withdrawn from the course and reenrolled the following semester.
Learners who miss a VCBC must complete a VCBC make-up for each absence to pass the course. Learners who complete the required make-up sessions do not reduce their total number of VCBC absences recorded for the course. Even when two VCBC absences have been made up, a third absence results in being withdrawn from the course. If the third absence is caused by an emergency or catastrophic event, learners can file an Exception Request.
Learners will receive a schedule for their make-up VCBC sessions from their VCBC faculty and will be responsible for completing the make-up session that they are scheduled for prior to the end of the semester. The missed VCBC must be made up by the end of the current semester; otherwise, the learner cannot progress to the next VCBC course. However, in rare circumstances when rescheduling VCBCs prior to the end of an academic semester is not feasible, learners may receive an ‘IR’ (Incomplete Remediation) in the course and may fulfill the remainder of the VCBCs by the end of the add/drop period of the following semester without disruption of progression in the academic program.
Please note: Make-up EL-VCBCs are not guaranteed and could delay progress in the academic program or graduation.
Direct Focused Client Care and Integrative Practicum Experiential Learning (Preceptorships)
Direct focused client care and integrative practicum experiential learning are integral to successful completion of a prelicensure academic program. These experiences allow the learner to observe and apply essential nursing knowledge and skills as well as develop sound clinical reasoning. Specific learning objectives and outcomes dictate which types of experiential learning sites are selected for direct focused client care experiential learning. Every direct focused client care experiential learning session in a prelicensure program is concept-based and expects specific learning outcomes. Learners must successfully complete the direct focused client care and/or integrative practicum experiential learning to receive a passing grade in each course with these learning components. Learners do not receive any compensation for direct focused client care or integrative practicum experiential learning and are not allowed to accept tips or gifts.
The College contracts with multiple healthcare agencies to provide opportunities for on-ground direct focused client care and integrative practicum experiential learning. Based on site and/or preceptor availability, some on-ground experiential learning schedules may extend outside the academic semester. The agencies may be located at short or long distances from a learner’s residence. Based on the requirements for the course in which they are enrolled, learners who must travel to their assigned site may be required to spend between four (4) to twenty-five (25) days in the assigned region. Placements may include breaks between scheduled on-ground days. Schedule Support will begin to distribute integrative practicum (IP) schedules to learners beginning the fourth week of the academic semester.
Learners are responsible for providing reliable transportation to attend the required on-ground direct focused client care and integrative practicum experiential learning sessions. Depending on the agency’s location, learners may need accommodation at a hotel near the assigned direct focused client care experiential learning site. Any travel completed up to 100 miles in each direction is considered local travel and is not eligible for reimbursement of travel funds under the Experiential Learning Schedule (EL) policy. Learners are responsible for all expenses associated with transportation, lodging, and meals in conjunction with on-ground direct focused client care and integrative practicum experiential learning.
Certain direct focused client care and integrative practicum experiential learning sites may require drug screenings, immunizations, and/or background checks in addition to previously submitted credentials. Learners are responsible for paying for and completing the additional requirements prior to participating in experiential learning at these sites.
Note: The integrative practicum (preceptorship) must be completed by the end of the semester to pass the course. Learners will be assigned one integrative practicum in the last semester of their program. An integrative practicum may not be rescheduled during the same semester as the originally assigned integrative practicum. Learners who cannot attend their integrative practicum may be required to complete the practicum the following semester. However, in rare circumstances, when scheduling the integrative practicum prior to the end of an academic semester is not feasible, learners may receive an I (Incomplete) in the course and may fulfill the remainder of the integrative practicum requirement by the end of the following semester.
Preparation for Licensure
- A variety of NCLEX-RN® preparatory activities will be delivered in stages throughout the entire prelicensure academic program.
- Prior to graduation, all learners must successfully complete the prescribed NCLEX-RN® review course.
- All learners must engage with the NCLEX Success Coach, provided by the College at no additional cost, prior to applying for licensure and testing.
The Standardized RN Exit Exam is a predictor of success on the NCLEX-RN® exam and will assist learners in preparation for RN licensure examination.
Licensing Exam Reimbursement Policy
Evidence suggests learners who take the licensing exam as promptly as possible after graduation increase their chances of success. To encourage a timely application and successful outcome of the licensing examination, graduates will be reimbursed for the cost of licensing exam registration when they meet the criteria noted in this policy.
Requirements for Reimbursement
- The graduate must pass the licensing exam, on the first or second attempt, within
the following time frames to receive a refund for the cost of registration for the
licensing exam, up to 100% paid for the passing attempt as described below.
- Within 90 days from academic transcript clearance date: 100% refund
- Within 120 days from academic transcript clearance date: 75% refund
- Within 150 days from academic transcript clearance date: 50% refund
- Academic transcript clearance is the date when Nursing Education Services clears a learner for graduation. Any holds placed by Learner Funding or Bursar will not change or extend the Academic Clearance date. If a learner is engaged in NCLEX Coaching, that date will start when the NCLEX Coach clears the learner, which will be the Academic Clearance date.
- The graduate must be cleared by NCLEX Success to qualify.
- The graduate must report their test date to firstname.lastname@example.org via their Nightingale College email.
- The graduate must meet financial eligibility criteria as determined by Bursar and Learner Funding.
- The graduate must be cleared for graduation and cleared by NCLEX Coaching to qualify.
- The graduate must apply for the needs-based advance by emailing a request to email@example.com via their Nightingale College email.
- Once approval has been granted, the graduate will meet with the Coordinator of NCLEX Success to register for the licensing exam and set the test date.
- Graduates may apply for the needs-based advance for up to two attempts on the licensing exam.
Note: Should the graduate choose to change the location of the scheduled licensing examination, any change in registration fees will remain the responsibility of the graduate. The College will not reimburse this fee.
If graduates do not follow and complete the reimbursement policy process, they will not be eligible for reimbursement.
- Upon receiving confirmation from the graduate that they have passed the licensing exam, NCLEX Success will process the graduate’s electronic signature for reimbursement according to the policy above.
- NCLEX Success will confirm the graduate’s licensure status by reviewing official test results submitted by graduates using their electronic signature that will be sent through the graduate’s Nightingale College email address. The graduate will then send their electronic signature, which will be submitted to Accounts Payable for reimbursement.
- Accounts Payable will complete the reimbursement process within fourteen (14) business days of receipt of the completed and signed form, assuming no errors or incomplete information.