University of Texas at El Paso Academic Catalog

Academic Catalog

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

As a graduate nurse, you can apply for a position immediately into a variety of settings usually within an acute care hospitals. Nurses are in high demand and the majority of new graduates find gainful employment upon finishing their degree or soon afterwards. After gaining some bedside experiences nurses can work in employee health, home health, telehealth, nursing informatics and school nursing. Nurses can also return to graduate school to obtain a Masters degree in Nursing.

Marketable Skills

Students will develop:

  • Communication: Nurses need to effectively communicate patient information to all members of the health care team. By doing so the patient will receive high quality care that is relevant, timely and error free. Nurses also develop communication skills to coordinate care for patient discharge needs to community agencies.

  • Critical thinking: Nurses develop critical thinking skills to monitor the health care status of their patients on an ongoing basis. This skill is also necessary to also develop clinical judgement. These are two of the most important skills that nurses need to effectively function in an often fast paced health care environment.

  • Listening: Nurses develop sharp listening skills to gain information from patients and their families to formulate a proper plan of care. Nurses also use their listening skills when communicating with all members of the health care team. 

Nurses develop effective social skills in order to communicate with patients, families and their peers. Strong social skills are also necessary for congruency in our communication Nurses develop problem solving skills to provide high quality patient care that is appropriate and responsive to patient's conditions. 

The undergraduate curriculum provides an innovative, integrated, and conceptual model for teaching and learning wherein critical thinking and decision- making are emphasized.

The curriculum is grounded in the sciences and is focused on addressing nursing and health care across the life span. The degree plan consists of approximately two (2) years of lower-division course work followed by two or more years of upper-division Nursing courses taken at the College of Nursing. The entire program is possible to complete in eight (8) full-term semesters. The curriculum culminates in preceptored courses that include learning and practice with experienced professional nurses in acute care facilities and in community health care settings.

Clinical Compliance Requirements

Students accepted into Phase 3 of the nursing program must meet all clinical clearance requirements. Please refer to Clinical Compliance for specific requirements. Failure to comply with clinical compliance requirements will result in students being dropped from courses

Traditional BSN Option

The Traditional BSN option is primarily designed as a pre-licensure entry to professional nursing practice educational program for students pursuing their first baccalaureate degree.  However, Students with a pre-existing baccalaureate degree are not precluded from applying to the Traditional BSN Option Phases 2 and 3.

Traditional BSN Option Application Process for Phases 2 and 3

  • Completion of the University Core Curriculum (grade of "C" or better is required for each course in the University Core).

  • The minimum cumulative GPA to apply is 3.00.

  • Completion of the pre-professional courses (PPC)

  • Completion of TEAS test (See TEAS Information below)

  • Proof of health insurance.

Students who are not admitted to Phase 2 or Phase 3 of the BSN program have the option of transferring to the Bachelor of Multidisciplinary Studies (BMS) program. All courses in the BSN degree plan students have passed with a D or better, with the exception of University Core courses which require a C or better, will be applied toward a BMS degree.

Traditional BSN Option Phase 2 Admissions Process

  • Apply to Phase 2. Please refer to the Applications and Deadlines website for more information.

  • Admission to Phase 2 is highly competitive.

  • Students are ranked for admission based on:

    • Phase 1 pre-professional courses GPA

    • Overall cumulative GPA (minimum GPA to apply is 3.00)

    • Successful completion of the TEAS test (must earn a composite score of 62% or higher)

The Phase 2 nursing courses include:

NURS 2303Intro to Nursing Practice3
NURS 2407Pharmacology for Nursing4
NURS 2502Pathophysiology5

• Students will be officially notified of admission status by the College of Nursing Office of Student Affairs.

Traditional BSN Option Phase 3 Admissions Process

  • Apply to Phase 3. Please refer to the Applications and Deadlines website for more information.

  • Admission to Phase 3 is highly competitive.

  • Students are ranked for admission based on:

    • Phase 2 nursing courses GPA

    • Phase 1 pre-professional courses (PPC) GPA

    • Overall cumulative GPA (minimum GPA to apply is 3.00)

    • Successful completion of the TEAS test (must earn a composite score of 62% or higher)

    • Criminal background check (CBC) cleared by the Texas Board of Nursing.

Students will be officially notified of admission status by the College of Nursing Office of Student Affairs.

TEAS Information

  • The Test of Essential Academic Skills is an admission requirement for Phases 2 and 3 of the nursing program.

  • The TEAS test is an internet-based, multiple-choice exam that assesses a student's abilities in four essential subject areas: reading, math, science, English and language usage.

  • Students are required to earn a composite score of 62% or higher.

  • Students have a total of three attempts in a 12-month period to achieve the required composite score.

  • The minimum time frame between a first attempt and a repeat attempt is 30 days.

  • The minimum composite score needed for admission to Phase 3 of the nursing program is above proficient level.

  • If the minimum composite score is not achieved by the third attempt, the student must wait 12 months from the third attempt date to retest. A fourth set of scores taken within the 12 month period will not be accepted.

  • Test scores that are at or above the minimum required score are valid for 2 years.

  • The College of Nursing strongly suggests that students take the TEAS while taking the pre-professional courses, but prior to the designated admission cycle to enter the Phase 2 nursing courses. Please refer to the Applications and Deadlines website for TEAS deadlines .

  • The College of Nursing strongly recommends for students to prepare for the TEAS test. Students can purchase the TEAS study material and online practice assessments through ATI Ttesting.

  • Testing fees are determined by ATI. Testing fees for the TEAS test tend to change every July 1. Please check the ATI Testing website for current TEAS test fees.

  • Students can register for the TEAS by logging on to ATI Ttesting.

Graduation Requirements

  • To be eligible for graduation, a student must have attained a minimum 2.0 Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) in the baccalaureate degree plan and a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 in the Nursing Major.

  • A candidate must successfully complete the prescribed curriculum and must meet all other requirements of the University and the College of Nursing.

  • Eligible undergraduate degree candidates must submit a graduation application to the College of Nursing Office of Student Affairs.

  • The College of Nursing Office of Student Affairs will review all graduation applications and conduct a final degree audit for each applicant. All graduation applications will be forwarded to the Registrar’s Office for processing.

  • Graduation fees may be paid through Pete’s Payment Options or Student Business Services in the Mike Loya Academic Services Building.

  • A late fee will be assessed if the student submits the graduation application after the official submission deadline.

Student Employment

The UTEP College of Nursing Undergraduate program is very rigorous and time-consuming. Students are strongly encouraged to carefully evaluate their personal and employment commitments to maximize their potential for success.

The College of Nursing assumes no responsibility for students' activities outside of the nursing curriculum. Students are personally responsible and liable for any activities conducted while employed. Student liability insurance provided by the University only covers students engaged in approved nursing curricular activities.  Individuals who illegally practice nursing may jeopardize their future as licensed professionals.

Students employed in a healthcare agency have the responsibility, personally and professionally, to engage in only those activities that fall within the job description.  Further, students have a responsibility to refuse to participate in activities that he or she has not been legally licensed to perform.

Additional Expenses

  • Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) including study guide.

  • Required dress and equipment for clinical practicums (See SON Undergraduate Handbook).

  • Ongoing assessment and testing in preparation for NCLEX-RN licensure examination.

  • Health and clinical clearances, including a drug screen and health insurance.

  • Background checks.

  • Application fee for licensure exam (NCLEX) and Jurisprudence Exam Declaratory. 

This list is not all-inclusive and is subject to change.

Nursing Student Organization

All enrolled students are eligible for membership in the Nursing Student Organization, an affiliate of the Texas Nursing Students' Association and the National Student Nurses’ Association. The UTEP Chapter has goals consistent with those of the National Student Nurses' Association. Its purpose is to aid in the development of the individual student, the profession of Nursing and the delivery of health care.

Academic Progress

Rigorous study is required to succeed in the Nursing Program. Multiple hours of preparation are required beyond the classroom periods and clinical experiences. Students must be willing to accept this as a condition of succeeding in the program.

A Nursing student must meet or exceed the following minimum requirements for each course in the Nursing curriculum in order to pass that course:

1. Didactic courses without a clinical lab

a. Students must maintain a minimum average of 75% on didactic course work. This constitutes the didactic evaluation of a course. Achieving less than a minimum average of 75.0% in the didactic portion of the course results in course failure. There is no rounding of grades and fractional points will be dropped. Extra credit is not permitted.

2. Didactic course with a clinical lab - In addition to meeting the conditions stated in the section above (didactic courses without a clinical lab), the following apply to courses with a clinical or lab component:

a. Clinical or lab related assignments must meet the minimum average of 75.0%. Grades or points given for clinical or lab related assignments are factored into the overall course grade only if the student has passed course's exams and/or quizzes with the minimum of 75.0%.

b. Students must pass both the didactic and the clinical or lab component of a course. Failure of either component results in failure of the entire course, i.e. failing to meet the clinical or lab requirements results in a failing grade for the entire course regardless of meeting the minimum average of 75.0% for exams and/or quizzes. Likewise, failing the didactic portion of the course results in failure of the entire course regardless of success in the clinical portion.

3. The grading scale is:

100 - 90 = A

89 - 80 = B

79 - 75 = C

74 - 60 = D

< 60 = F

4. Successfully pass the standardized exams associated with courses at or above the level designated by the College of Nursing (Please refer to “Assessment Technologies Institute (ATI) Policy and Procedures” in current SON undergraduate student handbook).

Course Repeat Policy

Repeating a nursing course because of failure or withdrawal is not automatic. The student must request permission from the Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Education and the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs in order to repeat a course. (Please refer to current SON undergraduate student handbook).

Progression

Students must successfully complete all prerequisite courses to progress through the curriculum sequence. Repeating a course disrupts the normal timeline of progression. Successful completion of a failed course does not guarantee automatic progression into succeeding courses. Students who vary from the normal timeline are placed in subsequent courses on a space-available basis each semester which include clinical . Successful passing of selected standardized exams at or above a level designated by the College of Nursing is also linked with progression. (Please refer to “Progression policy” in the current SON undergraduate student handbook).

Nursing Course Withdrawal and Repeat Policy

Nursing courses in Phases 2 and 3 may only be attempted twice. A withdrawal from a nursing course that results in a "W" counts as an attempt. Students are not encouraged to withdraw from nursing courses as this impedes progression in the completion of the degree plan, but if a student chooses to withdraw from a course, this should be in writing (refer to the “Progression Policy” in the current Traditional BSN Undergraduate Student Handbook).

Dismissal from the Nursing Program

A student is academically dismissed from the nursing program after failing two nursing courses or after two unsuccessful attempts of the same nursing course.  There is no appeal process for dismissals. A formal letter of academic dismissal will be sent to the student by the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education (refer to the Progression Policy in the Traditional BSN UG Handbook).

Safe and Effective Nursing Practice Policy

All nursing students must perform within the limits of safe practice. A faculty member can remove a student from a clinical site if the student's nursing practice is deemed unsafe as defined in the Safe Practice Policy of the College of Nursing, of which a copy is posted on the College of Nursing website.

Licensure as a Professional Nurse

Graduates seeking licensure must successfully complete the National Council of State Boards of Nursing-Registered Nurse Examination (NCLEX-RN) and the Texas Nursing Jurisprudence Exam which are administered by the Texas Board of Nursing. Graduates must complete the licensure application, which includes criminal background check information. The Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Education will verify the eligibility status of applicants.

All students are required to read and sign the Licensure Eligibility Notification Form prior to being admitted into the clinical courses. This is usually completed during the first semester at the College of Nursing.

Students who have a reason to believe that they may be ineligible for licensure can submit a Declaratory Order petition to the Texas Board of Nursing to assess eligibility. The Declaratory Order Request Form can be downloaded from the Texas Board of Nursing website.

Degree Plan

Required Credits: 120

Phase 1
University Core Curriculum
Complete the University Core Curriculum requirements. 42
Pre-Professional Prerequisites (All courses require a grade of C or better)
(the PPC GPA is the first criterion used for ranking for Phase 2)
Required Courses:
BIOL 1305
BIOL 1107
General Biology
and Topics in Study of Life I
4
BIOL 2311
BIOL 2111
Human Anat/Physiology I
and Human Anat/Physio Lab I
4
BIOL 2313
BIOL 2113
Human Anat/Physiology II
and Human Anat/Physio Lab II
4
Chemistry:
Select one of the following:4
General Chemistry
and Laboratory for CHEM 1305
Intro to General Chemistry
and Intro General Chemistry Lab
Mathematics:
Select one of the following:3-5
Math for Social Sciences I
Calculus I
Precalculus
Required:9
Fundamentals of Nutrition
Microorganisms and Disease
Introduction to Psychology
Phase 2
Requirements to apply to
1. A minimum overall GPA of 3.00 is required.
2. A minimum TEAS-VI score of 58.7% is required.
3. Students must apply at the beginning of their last semester of completing Phase 1.
4. Students enrolled in the last semester of Phase 1 at the time of selection may be conditionally accepted pending successful completion of Phase 1.
5. Phase 1 must be complete to progress to Phase 2.
6. Last semester of completing Phase 1 must be at the University of Texas at El Paso to be eligible to rank.
7. Students will be officially notified of admission status by the School of Nursing, Office of Student Affairs.
8. Applicants transferring from another school of nursing must provide a letter from the Dean/Director of that school stating that she/he is in good academic standing and eligible for progression in that program.
Students who are not admitted to Phase 2 or Phase 3 of the BSN program have the option of transferring to the Bachelor of Multidisciplinary Studies (BMS) program. All courses in the BSN degree plan students have passed with a D or better, with the exception of University Core courses which require a C or better, will be applied toward a BMS degree.
Phase 2 Nursing: If selected, students will be approved to take the following nursing courses (11 credit hours):
Nursing Professional Courses (All courses listed require a grade of C or better)
Ranking criteria: Phase 1 pre-professional courses GPA, overall GPA, TEAS score
-The first criterion used for ranking to Phase 3 is the overall GPA of Phase 2 (NURS 2303, NURS 2402, and NURS 2407.)
-A minimum overall GPA of 3.00 is required to apply to Phase 2.
Required Courses:
NURS 2303Intro to Nursing Practice3
NURS 2407Pharmacology for Nursing4
NURS 2502Pathophysiology5
Phase 3
If selected, students will be approved to take the nursing professional courses.
Ranking criteria: Phase 2 nursing courses, Phase 1 pre-professional courses GPA, overall GPA, TEAS score
-A minimum overall GPA of 3.00 is required to apply to Phase 3.
-The School of Nursing will require a cleared criminal background check by the Texas Board of Nursing to be eligible to rank for Phase 3.
-Nursing professional courses
5th Semester12
NURS 3214Evidence Based Research2
NURS 3401Health Assessment4
NURS 3604Fundamentals of Nurs Practice6
6th Semester 13
NURS 3205Nursing Inform. & Resea. Util.2
NURS 3300Mental Behavioral Health Nurs3
NURS 3709Adult Health Nursing I7
7th Semester 13
NURS 4608Nurs Care of Child & Child Fam6
NURS 4714Adult Health Nursing II7
8th Semester 13
NURS 4306Transition to Professional Pr3
NURS 4511Population Focused Care5
NURS 4412Senior Practicum4
NURS 4133Senior Seminar1
1 hour of a nursing elective will be required of students who transferred NURS 2307 (3 credit hours) prior to Spring 2017.
Total Hours120

University Core Curriculum

The department may make specific suggestions for courses which are most applicable towards your major.

All courses require a C or better

I. Communication (six hours)

The objective of the communication component is to enable the student to communicate effectively in clear and correct prose or orally in a style appropriate to the subject, occasion, and audience.
Select six hours of the following: 6
For students whose secondary education was in English:
Written and Oral Communication
Writing About Literature
Rhetoric & Composition I
Rhetoric & Composition 2
Rhetoric, Composition & Comm
For students whose secondary education was not in English:
Expos Engl Compos-Spkr Esl
Res & Crit Writng Spkr Esl
Total Hours6

II. American History (six hours)

The objectives of the history component are to expand students’ knowledge of the origin and history of the U.S., their comprehension of the past and current role of the U.S. in the world, and their ability to critically evaluate and analyze historical evidence. U.S. history courses (three hours must be Texas history) include:
HIST 1301History of U.S. to 18653
HIST 1302History of U.S. Since 18653
Total Hours6

III. Language, Philosophy & Culture  (three hours)

The objective of the humanities component is to expand students' knowledge of the human condition and human cultures, especially in relation to behaviors, ideas, and values expressed in works of human imagination and thought. Through study in disciplines such as literature and philosophy, students engage in critical analysis and develop an appreciation of the humanities as fundamental to the health and survival of any society.
Select one of the following:3
Intro-African Amer Studies
Latina/o Presence in the U.S.
English Literature
English Literature
Intro to American Fiction
Intro to American Drama
Intro to American Poetry
Making of the "Other" Americas
World History to 1500
World History Since 1500
Introduction to Philosophy
Ethics
Introduct to Religious Studies
Seeing & Naming: Conversations
Introduction to Womens Studies
Global Feminisms
Total Hours3

IV. Mathematics  (three hours)

The objective of the mathematics component is to develop a quantitatively literate college graduate. Every college graduate should be able to apply basic mathematical tools in the solution of real-world problems.
Select one of the following:3
College Algebra
Trigonometry and Conics
Math in the Modern World
Math for Social Sciences I
Calculus I
Precalculus 1,2
Math for Social Sciences II
Statistical Literacy
Elementary Statistical Methods
1 A higher-level course in the calculus sequence can be substituted.
2 TCCN MATH 1314 will also satisfy this requirement.
Total Hours3

V. Life & Physical Sciences  (six hours)

The objective of the study of the natural sciences is to enable the student to understand, construct, and evaluate relationships in the natural sciences, and to enable the student to understand the bases for building and testing theories. The courses listed are for non-majors; the major courses in the discipline can be substituted for the non-major sequence. A minimum of two semesters of lecture and one semester of laboratory associated with one of the courses, or two semesters of combined (3 credit) lecture-laboratory courses (Only six hours apply toward the required 42.):
Select one of the following:1-4
Astronomy Lab I
Elem Astronomy-Solar System
Elem Astr Stars & Galaxies
Introductory Biology Lab
Human Biology Laboratory
Topics in Study of Life I
Organismal Biology Laboratory
Introductory Biology
Human Biology
General Biology
Organismal Biology
Human Anat/Physio Lab I
Human Anat/Physio Lab II
Human Anat/Physiology I
Human Anat/Physiology II
Laboratory for CHEM 1305
Laboratory for CHEM 1306
Intro General Chemistry Lab
Intro Organic & Biochem Lab
General Chemistry
General Chemistry
Intro to General Chemistry
Intro Organic & Biochemistry
Environmental Sci. Lab
Non-major Lab for ESCI 1301
Intro to Environment Science 2
Intro to Environmental Sci
Laboratory for GEOG 1306
Physical Geography
Lab for GEOL 1313
Lab for GEOL 1314
Principles of Earth Sci - Lab
Laboratory for Geology 1212
Principles of Earth Sciences
Principles of Earth Science
The Blue Planet
Natural Hazards
Intro to Physical Geology
Intro to Historical Geol
Fundamentals of Nutrition
Wellness Dynamics
Microorganisms and Disease
General Physics I
General Physics II
Laboratory for PHYS 2320
Laboratory for PHYS 2321
Introductory Mechanics
Introductory Electromagnetism
Total Hours 6

VI. Political Science  (six hours)

The objectives of the political science component are to expand students’ knowledge of the origin and evolution of the U.S. and Texas political systems, focusing on the growth of political institutions, and on the constitutions of Texas and the United States; and to enhance their understanding of federalism, states rights, and individual civil liberties, rights, and responsibilities.
Required Courses:
POLS 2310Introduction to Politics3
POLS 2311American Gover & Politics3
Total Hours6

VII. Social and Behavioral Sciences  (three hours)

The objective of the social and behavioral science component is to increase students' knowledge of how social and behavioral scientists discover, describe, and explain the behaviors and interactions among individuals, groups, institutions, events, and ideas. Such knowledge will better equip students to understand themselves and the roles they play in addressing the issues facing humanity.
Select one of the following:3
Intro-Phys Anth/Archeolog
Intro-Cultural Anthropology
Cultural Geography
Intro to Linguistics
Econ for Engrs & Scientists
Asian American Studies
Interpersonal Communication
Mass Media and Society
Principles of Macroeconomics
Principles of Microeconomics
Introduction to Ed Psychology
Action Research in Classrooms
Introduction to Linguistics
Cultural Geography
Community Service
An Intro. to Linguistics
Lang. Inside & Out: Sel Topics
Introduction to Psychology
Introduction to Sociology
Cultural Geography
Total Hours3

VIII. Creative Arts (three hours)

The objective of the visual and performing arts component is to expand students' knowledge and appreciation of the human imagination as expressed through works of visual art, dance, music, theatre and film. Through study in these disciplines, students will form aesthetic judgments and develop an appreciation of the arts as fundamental to the health and survival of any society.
Select one of the following:3
Art Appreciation
History of Art I
History of Art II
Chicana/o Fine Arts Appreciat
Dance Appreciation
Intro-Art of Motion Pict.
Music Appreciation
Jazz to Rock
Music, Culture, and Society
Introduction to Theatre
Total Hours3

IX. Component Area Option (six hours)

The objective of the institutionally designated option component is to develop the critical thinking skills and academic tools required to be an effective learner. Special emphasis is placed on the use of technology in problem-solving, communications, and knowledge acquisition.
Select two of the following:6
Intro to Global Business
Public Speaking
Business/Profession Comm
Intro-Computational Thinking
Computer Programming Sci/Engr
Eng Innovation and Leadership
Introduction to Leadership
Inquiry in Math & Science
Seminar/Critical Inquiry
Total Hours6

4-Year Sample Degree Plan 

Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Freshman
Fall
BIOL 1305
BIOL 1107
General Biology
and Topics in Study of Life I
4
MATH 1320Math for Social Sciences I3
RWS 1301Rhetoric & Composition I3
UNIV 1301Seminar/Critical Inquiry3
Component Area Option3
Spring
BIOL 2311
BIOL 2111
Human Anat/Physiology I
and Human Anat/Physio Lab I
4
HIST 1301History of U.S. to 18653
HIST 1302History of U.S. Since 18653
PSYC 1301Introduction to Psychology3
RWS 1302Rhetoric & Composition 23
Sophomore
Fall
BIOL 2313
BIOL 2113
Human Anat/Physiology II
and Human Anat/Physio Lab II
4
POLS 2310Introduction to Politics3
Language, Philosophy, and Culture3
Creative Arts Area3
Spring
CHEM 1307
CHEM 1107
Intro to General Chemistry
and Intro General Chemistry Lab
4
or
General Chemistry
and Laboratory for CHEM 1305
HSCI 2302Fundamentals of Nutrition3
MICR 2330Microorganisms and Disease3
POLS 2311American Gover & Politics3
Junior
Fall
NURS 2303Intro to Nursing Practice3
NURS 2407Pharmacology for Nursing4
NURS 2502Pathophysiology5
Spring
NURS 3214Evidence Based Research2
NURS 3401Health Assessment4
NURS 3604Fundamentals of Nurs Practice6
Senior
Fall
NURS 3205Nursing Inform. & Resea. Util.2
NURS 3300Mental Behavioral Health Nurs3
NURS 3709Adult Health Nursing I7
Spring
NURS 4608Nurs Care of Child & Child Fam6
NURS 4714Adult Health Nursing II7
Summer
NURS 4033Senior Seminar0
NURS 4407Trans to Prof. Nursing Practic4
NURS 4412Senior Practicum4
NURS 4511Population Focused Care5
Total Hours120