Frequently Asked Questions

Future Nurses









What are the prerequisite courses I must complete to apply to the nursing major?

GE Area A1Oral Communication (COMM 3, 7, or 8)

GE Area A2 English Composition (ENGL 5B or ENGL 10)

GE Area A3 Critical Thinking (SOC 3 preferred) 

GE Area B4 Statistics (Math 11 or PH 92)

GE Area B1 & B3 Introduction to Chemistry (CHEM 3A)

GE Area B2 Microbiology (BIOL 20)

Human Anatomy (BIOL 67A: Human Anatomy & Physiology I)

Human Physiology (BIOL 67B: Human Anatomy & Physiology II)

Students taking these courses at a community college please view equivalent courses at your college or visit ASSIST.

What are the minimum requirements to apply to the nursing major?

Minimum 3.0 prerequisite GPA 

Minimum 3.0 overall GPA

Minimum score of 75% on the TEAS

Are there any other requirements for entrance?

 Students are required to take the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) which is available at our campus Testing Center (559.278.2457), as well as many other testing locations throughout the state. Students must pass the test with a score of 75% or higher, and are given two attempts to do so.

For additional information regarding the TEAS, please contact the College of Health and Human Services Advising and Career Development Center at 559.278.5027.

Is the TEAS hard? How can I improve my chances of getting at least a 75% passing score on the TEAS?

  1. The TEAS is similar to your state standardized tests. A student knows how well they will perform on these types of tests. They can judge how much they need to prepare for a certain section on the TEAS. A student should take the TEAS after completing all four science prerequisites as these courses serve as good review for the science section on the test.
  2. If you fail to obtain a 75%, allow a few weeks to at least one month to pass from your previous attempt before re-taking the test. Your thought process or ability to do better on the next attempt will not improve at all if you take the test again within days to a one or two weeks. Plan accordingly.
  3. Start preparing at least one month early with a daily study schedule planned out.
  4. Look into other resources and the TEAS study manual.

When do I apply to the major?

Fall Admission Cycle (February 1-28)

Open to All eligible applicants.

  • Prerequisite courses must be completed the previous Fall.
  • TEAS must be completed by March 31st.

Spring Admission Cycle (July 1-31)

Open ONLY to all eligible Fresno State student applicants.  (Eligible applicants must have completed one full time semester of courses at Fresno State. Eligible Post-Baccalaureate applicants are to have graduated from Fresno State).

  • Prerequisite courses must be completed the Spring prior.
  • TEAS must be completed by July 31st.

For new transfer students, entry into the Nursing major requires two applications:

All undergraduate Transfer and Freshman are admitted to Pre-Nursing. Student must be declared Pre-Nursing to apply to the nursing program.

Students applying for a second bachelors in Nursing would need to submit the graduate application online at Cal State Apply along with the Nursing (BSN) Application online through NursingCAS.  All Nursing admissions criteria must be met prior to applying to the program and the university. 

The Cal State Apply application fee is nonrefundable.  Therefore, please assure that you have met all of the criteria and application requirements prior to submitting your application for the desired application filing period.

Admissions is based on a holistic approach.

*NursingCAS application closes 11:59 EST (8:59 PST).

How do I register for Nursing classes?

Registration is done on through the Fresno State student portal. If you apply to the University and have not created a Fresno State email address, go to to sign up for one. Once you have an email address, you can register online and check your registration status.

Current Class Schedule

Always prepare a schedule and have alternate courses for nursing additional requirements and General Education ready when you register.

What courses can I take before I start the nursing major?

The following courses, offered by other departments, are required in the "Nursing Additional Requirements" to the nursing major. These courses are not required before beginning the nursing major, but may be taken prior to beginning the major:

  • Lifespan Development (CFS 38)
  • Nutrition & Health (NUTR 53)
  • Introductory/General Psychology (PSYCH 10)
  • Philosophy of Ethics (PHIL 20 or 120, depending on your G.E. needs or choices)
  • Sociology (SOC 3)

What General Education (G.E.) courses should I take?

See the G.E. requirement sheet. For nursing majors only, Microbiology (BIOL 20) satisfies the G.E. Area B2 requirement.

If you are uncertain of your catalog year or which G.E. courses to take schedule an appointment with a CHHS ACDC Academic Counselor for G.E. consultation and advising.

Do some of the 8 Pre-Nursing prerequisite courses double count as lower division general education (G.E.) courses?

Yes. The following prerequisite courses double count as lower division general education courses:

GE Area A1 Oral Communication (COMM 3, 7, or 8)

GE Area A2 English Composition (ENGL 5B or ENGL 10)

GE Area A3 Critical Thinking (SOC 3 preferred) 

GE Area B4 Statistics (Math 11 or PH 92)

GE Area B1 & B3 Introduction to Chemistry (CHEM 3A)

GE Area B2 Microbiology (BIOL 20)

Are there certain G.E. areas where Pre-Nursing students do not need to take the courses listed?

Yes. For G.E. Area B4, PH 92 may be taken rather than any courses listed for area B4 on the G.E. list.

For G.E. area B2, Pre-Nursing students take Microbiology (BIOL 20) instead of the courses listed for that area. These are exceptions placed towards Pre-Nursing students hoping to apply to the Nursing program.

What if I am a freshman Pre-Nursing student wanting to start the prerequisites right away, but I can't find any open prerequisite courses?  

All freshmen admitted to Fresno State register for their courses during their Dog Days Orientation over the summer prior to starting their fall semester at the university. It is important for all freshman Pre-Nursing students to remember that by this time, most classes are full/closed, including Pre-Nursing prerequisites and nursing co-requisite courses. Students attending Dog Days Orientation may register for classes that are still open or that they can waitlist for preferred courses. Depending on your Dog Days Orientation date, if there are no open prerequisite or co-requisite courses, then consider enrolling in the following:

  • Classes to fulfill a minor (select a health-related minor; minors are more than 12 units to complete)
  • Classes to complete a certificate (some certificates are 12 units to complete)
  • Kinesiology Activity Courses (KAC) [1 unit sport/fitness classes similar to P.E. in high school]
  • Classes you are interested in and want to explore

Most Pre-Nursing majors are not able to enroll or start prerequisites or co-requisites until their second year at Fresno State so do not be discouraged if you cannot enroll in any prerequisite courses as a freshman.

What is a 'prerequisite' and why can I not enroll in a certain Pre-Nursing prerequisite course?

A 'prerequisite' means that there is a requirement for completion of another course prior to taking the course of choice.

This applies to Chemistry 3A (CHEM 3A), which is a G.E. area B1 course with a prerequisite. In order to register for CHEM 3A, G.E. area B.4 (MATH 11 or Public Health 92 preferred) must be completed first. Both Math 11 and PH 92 are statistics courses that fulfill G.E. area B4. PH 92 specifically for Pre-Nursing majors only, fulfills G.E. area B4.

A student has the option to select either course to take to fulfill area B4. In addition, G.E. area B4 can be taken concurrently with CHEM 3A or completed to enroll into CHEM 3A.

Note: Microbiology (BIOL 20) can only be taken after CHEM 3A has been completed. 

Would it be recommended to take more than one science prerequisite course per semester?  

No. The science prerequisite courses are sequential and are prerequisites to the other at Fresno State.

CHEM 3A is a prerequisite for BIOL 20, CHEM 3A and BIOL 20 are prerequisites for BIOL 67A, and BIOL 67A is a prerequisite for BIOL 67B.

Equivalent prerequisite science courses can be taken outside of Fresno State. Student will need to check with institution on their course offerings and for equivalency.

  Does credit from AP courses taken in high school count towards the prerequisites or co-requisites?

Yes. A score of 3 or higher on an AP exam will count as college credit. Send Fresno State a copy of your score(s) through your College Board account.

A 3 or higher on AP Statistics gives a student credit for MATH 11, allowing him or her to register for CHEM 3A. A score of 3 or higher on AP Calculus AB or BC gives a student credit for GE area B4, but still requires him or her to take MATH 11 or PH 92 to fulfill one of the prerequisites. However, AP Calculus will allow a student to take CHEM 3A still.

A score of 3 or higher on AP English Language & Composition fulfills GE area A2 requirement, which is a prerequisite for Pre-Nursing and allows a student to register in other GE areas that have A2 as a prerequisite.

  Can I complete a nursing degree in four years?

Most students take more than four years to complete the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. The nursing major is a five-semester (two and a half-years) sequential program, with little opportunity to condense or "fast-track". Most students take two to three years to complete the prerequisite and lower division G.E. courses before beginning the major.

Who is my advisor and how do I meet with them?

Advising for current Fresno State Pre-Nursing students is available through the College of Health and Human Services (CHHS) Advising and Career Development Center (ACDC); call 559.278.5027 or stop by McLane Hall, Room 194 for walk-in advising. (Please call ahead of time for advising hours). 

If your schedule does not allow for walk-in hours, then you are welcome to call the CHHS ACDC at 559.278.5027 or email

Are scholarships available?

Consult the Fresno State Scholarship website. Additionally, the School of Nursing posts scholarship information including specific scholarships for students enrolled in the nursing major on the McLane Hall nursing bulletin board.

What is the Upper Division Writing Requirement?

The Upper Division Writing Requirement is a graduation requirement to be met after you attain junior standing (60 units). Students have the option of taking a “W” course or the exam to fulfill the requirement.

See Upper Division Writing Requirement (UDWR) in the Catalog or contact Testing Office in FFS Bldg, room 110, or phone 559.278.2457.

For further information regarding the UDWR, please contact the College of Health and Human Services Advising and Career Development Center at 559.278.5027.

Why am I listed as a 'Pre-Nursing' major, instead of a 'Nursing' major?

Until you are admitted into the nursing program, you are listed as a Pre-Nursing student working on prerequisites and meeting minimum eligibility to apply. Once a Pre-Nursing student is admitted into the Nursing program, their major status will change to Nursing.

Is the nursing major impacted and what does that mean?

Yes, the nursing major is impacted (limited and competitive entry) because there are more students applying to the major than there are spaces available. At this time, we are unable to accept out-of-state or International applicants due to our impacted status.

Will I be eligible to take the registered nurse license examination?

Upon completion of the pre-licensure nursing curriculum, graduates will be eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN). 

The NCLEX-RN is designed to test knowledge, skills, and abilities essential to the safe and effective practice of nursing at the entry level.

What is the current NCLEX-RN pass rate for Fresno State graduates?

Fresno State's NCLEX-RN pass rate for 2017-2018 is 90.18%

I was recently admitted into the Nursing program and was notified about participating in 'RNBC'. What is that and it is worth paying to attend?

Registered Nursing Boot Camp (RNBC) is a 3-day orientation event held prior to the beginning of each semester at Fresno State. It is organized by nursing students in the School of Nursing. This event offers recently admitted students an opportunity to meet nursing majors ahead of them in the program (mentors), build friendships with students in other semesters and within their own cohort, and receive informational sessions on various topics essential for nursing.

Overall, students who have attended RNBC have really enjoyed the experience and state having been better prepared for their first semester before classes started. RNBC was founded at Fresno State a few years ago and was the first university to create such orientation event for a Nursing program. Many other universities have followed in Fresno State's steps by starting an orientation event also, with permission from Fresno State.