Accelerated BSN Program Requirements and Application


Applications to the Montana State University’s Accelerated BSN Program (May start) will be processed via NursingCAS.  NursingCAS is an online, centralized application service for nursing programs. Interested applicants must use NursingCAS to apply to MSU’s ABSN nursing program. NursingCAS will be used to facilitate the processing of your application and transcripts. 

Timeline: ABSN Option for Summer Semester (May) start

  • August of each year the Applications for Accelerated BSN program of study are available through Nursing CAS:
      • Application deadline for May 2020 start date has been extended to October 31

    • October 31: Deadline for receipt of Applications for ABSN Placement for the following May (Summer Semester) via the Nursing CAS website.
    • November 15: Applicants with background check issues and urine drug screen issues must submit documentation and explanation to the Associate Dean by no later than this date. Applicants failing to do so will not be considered for placement.
    • December 15: Notification of qualified applicants of placement status and campus.
    • December 30: Deadline for receipt of acceptance or declination of ABSN placement offer.
    • January 15: Deadline for receipt of all official transcripts through the previous Fall semester.
      • GPAs for all students will be calculated using those grades earned up to the application. GPA will not be recalculated when Fall grades are available; Fall grades will be audited to determine if all required prerequisite courses have been completed with a grade of C or better.
    • January 31: Qualified applicants who have been offered a placement will have all background check issues and urine drug screen issues reviewed by the Associate Dean, the Campus Director, and the Dean by this date. 
    • Applicants must also apply to Montana State University, Bozeman through the Undergraduate Admissions Office as a pre-nursing undergraduate student. Do not apply through the Graduate School as a non-degree seeking graduate student.
      • Admission into MSU does not guarantee selection into the ABSN program.


Requirements for Application

  • Minimum of a conferred bachelor’s degree from an accredited College or University in a discipline other than nursing at the time of the application deadline.
  • Completion of 10 prerequisite courses with a minimum of a 3.0 GPA.  Prerequisite courses include:
    • CHMY 121- Introduction to General Chemistry with a face to face lab
      • General Chemistry 1 AND 2 can be combined to meet this requirement
    • CHMY 123- Introduction to Organic and Biochemistry Principles with a face to face lab
      • Organic Chemistry 1, 2 AND a Biochemistry course can be combined to meet this requirement
    • BIOH 201- Anatomy and Physiology I with a face to face lab (human) 
    • BIOH 211- Anatomy and Physiology II with a face to face lab (human) 
    • BIOM 250- Microbiology for Health Sciences (no lab required) – focus on infectious diseases
    • STAT 216- Introduction to Statistics
    • NUTR 221- Human Nutrition
    • HDFS 101- Individual and Family Development & Well-Being –Across the Lifespan OR PSYX 230 Developmental Psychology
      • Must include content on infancy through death
    • PSYX 100- Introduction to Psychology
    • SOCI 101- Introduction to Sociology  
  • 3 of the 5 natural science prerequisite courses including BIOH201 or Human Anatomy and Physiology with a face to face lab must be completed at the time of the application deadline.
  • A maximum of 9 credits of prerequisite coursework may be in progress/remaining at the time of the application deadline.
  • All prerequisite courses must be completed by January 15th, following the application deadline.
  • All required prerequisite courses must be completed with a grade of C or better (C- Grades are not acceptable) and no more than 2 repeated attempts are permitted in the required prerequisites courses.
  • For prerequisite course work taken at any College or University other than at Montana State University, applicants MUST refer to the transfer equivalencies website for course substitution review. 
  • All prerequisite course work coming in to MSU as an elective (ELEC) and or not equivalent or not documented on the transfer equivalencies website MUST have a syllabus submitted to the ABSN Coordinator for review prior to the application deadline. 

Clinical Compliance Tracking

The College of Nursing utilizes CastleBranch®, an accredited member of the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS) for compliance tracking. 

  • Information for utilizing CastleBranch®, for the following requirements will be supplied in the CAS application:
  • Background Check
  • Urine Drug Screen
  • Immunizations
  • CPR American Heart Association BLS for HealthCare Providers
  • Health Insurance
  • HIPAA and OSHA training

Details for completing this compliance tracking can be found within the application.

  • Fees for this mandatory requirement are:
    • 1st Compliance Tracking (at the time of application) - $168.00
    • 2nd Compliance Tracking (one year later) - $106.00

Application Evaluation

Applications will be reviewed holistically using the following criteria:

  • Successful completion of application see Policy C-19 and Procedure C-19 for minimum requirements
  • Baccalaureate conferred in a degree other than Nursing
  • Calculated GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) in the prerequisite courses
  • Science course GPA carries additional weight
  • Attempts in the prerequisite courses
  • Personal Interview
  • Substantive essay questions
  • Community engagement and work experience
  • Selection of a Diverse Cohort
  • HRSA Indicators

For questions, please contact the ABSN coordinator.