BSN Degree in Orange County, California

The WCU-Orange County Bachelor of Science in Nursing program educates students through a hands-on course of study designed to equip students for long-term success.

10 Weeks

10-week terms allow for start dates throughout the year

39 Months

Earn your BSN in as few as 39 months at the Accelerated program pace

120 Credits

Complete 120 credits to earn your BSN degree

Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program Highlights

Real Life Icon

Simulation technology labs with high-fidelity manikins that mimic biological and behavioral patient responses

Dedicated clinical advisors providing one-on-one guidance, local placement assistance, and help managing partner site relationships

Your Success

Career services available to students and graduates for professional development, job-search assistance, and long-term career strategy

Extensive NCLEX preparation services including bootcamps, zero-cost tutoring, a virtual library, and study resources

Why Pursue a BSN Degree at WCU-Orange County?

Nurses play a critical role in the patient experience. Not only are nurses the largest component of the healthcare workforce, but they’re the primary providers of patient care within hospitals, according to American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).1 Working in a wide range of settings, from hospitals to specialists’ offices to residential facilities, nurses provide essential medical expertise combined with the empathetic approach to care for which they are known.

At WCU-Orange County, we have highly experienced faculty and a fully equipped campus, so our students benefit from industry-current education, up-to-date facilities, and a wealth of academic and career-building resources to aid in their success. Our BSN program is student-centric, hands-on, and comprehensive, allowing our students to graduate with the preparation and confidence to begin practice.

Overview: Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program

Program Details

BSN Program Time to Completion

WCU-Orange County offers a BSN program that you can complete in 39 months. This program is designed for students who can commit to full-time study, providing a more streamlined path to graduation and giving you the skills you need to start a career in nursing.

Accelerated Pace


120 Credits

39 Months

8 Semesters


This curriculum applies to students matriculating or reentering after December 1, 2022.

General Education Requirements

All science courses must have been taken within the last five calendar years, unless the student possesses a degree or advanced degree in the specific field of study for which the student is seeking transfer credit. Additional information regarding transfer credit is located in the university’s catalog under Transfer Credit policy or below.

Category and RequirementsWCU Course Requirements Transferable / Options
Foundational CourseFYS 001 (0): First Year Seminar (Los Angeles, Ontario, Miami {prior to Spring II 2023}, and Orange County {prior to Summer 1 2023} Campuses) FHE 100 (3): Foundations of Higher Education (Texas, Miami {starting Spring II 2023}, and Orange County {starting Summer I 2023} Campuses)Non-transferable
A1- Written Communication (5 Semester Credits and 2 Courses Minimum)ENGL 140 (3): Written Communication I * ENGL 240 (3): Written Communication IIAny equivalent courses that meet the General Education categorical requirements.
A2. Oral Communication (2.5 Semester Credits Minimum)SPCH 142 (3): Oral CommunicationAny equivalent courses that meet the General Education categorical requirements.
A3. Critical Thinking (2.5 Semester Credits Minimum)*PHIL 341 (3): Critical ReasoningAny equivalent courses that meet the General Education categorical requirements.
A4. Quantitative Reasoning (5 Semester Credits and 2 Courses Minimum)MATH 108 (3): College Mathematics I MATH 211 (3): StatisticsAny equivalent courses that meet the General Education categorical requirements.
B1– Social and Behavioral Sciences / Cultural Diversity, Tradition (8 Semester Credits and 3 Courses Minimum)PSYC 160 (3): Psychology * PSYC 290 (3): Life Span Psychology * HUM 370 (3): Cultural PluralismEquivalent to PSYC 160 Equivalent to PSYC 290 Any equivalent courses that meet the General Education categorical requirements.
B2. Life and Physical Sciences (12 Semester Credits and 4 Courses Minimum)ANAT 260 (4): Human Anatomy PHYS 261 (4): Human Physiology CHEM 280 (4): Chemistry MICR 290 (4): General MicrobiologyEquivalent to ANAT 260 Equivalent to PHYS 261 Non-transferable at the Orange County Campus starting Summer I 2023 Equivalent to CHEM 280 Equivalent to MICR 290
B3. General Education Capstone (3 Semester Credits)CAPS 401 (3): General Education Capstone (Los Angeles, Ontario, Miami {prior to Spring II 2023}, Orange County {prior to Summer I 2023} Campuses)Non-transferable
A minimum of 46 credits is required for graduation.

*As of April 2019, this course will be delivered online, asynchronously, through the institution’s Learning Management System except where otherwise authorized by the Program Dean/Director.

General Education within the Area of Study

PATH 370Pathophysiology3
PHIL 434Medical Ethics and Issues3
Total Credit Hours:6

Note: If scheduled, the following courses are to be taken at WCU: FYS 001, FHE 100, CAPS 401, and PATH 370 and PHYS 261 (OC Campus only, starting Summer I 2023).

Core Nursing Courses

NURS 100Fundamentals of Nursing3
NURS 101LFundamentals of Nursing Skills Lab2
NURS 110Introduction to Professional Nursing2
NURS 120Introduction to Medical Surgical Nursing3
NURS 121L-AIntroduction to Medical Surgical Nursing Practicum2
NURS 121L-BIntroduction to Medical Surgical Nursing Practicum – On-Campus1
NURS 180Pharmacology3
NURS 190Physical Assessment2
NURS 201Medical Surgical Nursing-Promoting Wellness3
NURS 211LMedical Surgical Nursing3
NURS 222Mental Health/Psychiatric Nursing: Promoting Wellness in the Mentally Ill3
NURS 223LMental Health/Psychiatric Nursing: Promoting Wellness Practicum2
NURS 225Nutrition in Health and Disease3
NURS 306Expanding Family and Community (OB)2
NURS 307Developing Family and Community (PEDS)2
NURS 316L-AExpanding and Developing Family and Community Practicum (OB)1.5
NURS 317L-ADeveloping Family and Community Practicum (PEDS)1.5
NURS 340Public Health Nursing3
NURS 342LPublic Health Nursing Practicum2
NURS 350Research in Nursing3
NURS 420Principles of Leadership and Management3
NURS 431Disaster Management2
NURS 440Issues and Trends in Nursing3
NURS 480Advanced Medical Surgical Nursing: Promoting Wellness Practicum3
NURS 481LAdvanced Medical Surgical Nursing: Promoting Wellness Practicum3
NURS 493*Integration of Nursing Concepts3
NURS 497Nursing Capstone1
NURS 498LIntegration of Nursing Practices3
Total Credit Hours:68.0

NURS 100, NURS 101L: pre-licensure students only *NURS 493R – Taken if student is unsuccessful in NURS 493.

Program Credit Distribution

General Education Semester Credits46.0
General Education within the Area of Study6.0
Core Nursing Courses68.0
Total Program Semester Credits120.0
Tuition & Financial Aid

How Much Does the Orange County Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program Cost?

We know school is a substantial commitment. At WCU, we want to equip you with all the information you need to make the right decision for your future.

Our goal is to give you a clear understanding of Orange County Bachelor of Science in Nursing tuition costs so you can be well-informed as you navigate the application and enrollment process. To assist you in your decision, we provide a breakdown below of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program costs in Orange County at West Coast University.

We offer several financial aid options — including scholarships, grants, and loan access — to help support you through your studies. For more information about your financial support options, visit our Financial Aid page.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

10 Month Academic Year
with parentsoff campus
Food & Housing$2,980$9,920
Personal Expenses$6,740$6,740

Los Angeles and Ontario Campuses


Degree Type

Bachelor of Science

(Prior to Spring 2 2024)

Bachelor of Science

(Starting Spring 2 2024)

Total Program Credits120 120
Program Length (Full-Time)8 semesters 8 semesters
Full-Time Status (12 to 18 credits)$17,371$17,892
3/4-Time Status (9 to 11 credits)$14,914$14,914
1/2-Time Status (6 to 8 credits)$11,578$11,578
Less than 1/2-Time Status (under 6 credits) (per credit)$1,986 $1,986
Total Tuition Costs (Full-Time)$143,136 $143,136
Registration Fee (refundable)$75$75
STRF Fee1 (non-refundable)$382.50 $382.50
Estimated Total Book Costs2$5,207$5,207
Estimated Total Book Shipping Cost2$521$521
Estimate for Uniforms Fees2$130 $130
Estimate for Supplies & Licensure Preparation Fees2$2,345$2,345
Technology Fee3 ($100 per semester)$800$800
General Education Resource Fee4$775$500
Estimated Total Program Costs$153,371.50$153,096.50


Orange County Campus


Degree Type

Bachelor of Science

(Starting Fall I 2023)

Total Program Credits120
Program Length(Full-Time)
8 semesters
Full-Time Status(12 to 18 credits)$17,892
3/4-Time Status(9 to 11 credits)$14,914
1/2-Time Status(6 to 8 credits)$11,578
Less than 1/2-Time Status(under 6 credits) (per credit)$1,986 
Total Tuition Costs(Full-Time)$143,136
Registration Fee(refundable)$75
STRF Fee1(non-refundable)$382.50
Estimated Total Book Costs2$5,207
Estimated Total Book Shipping Cost2$521
Estimate for Uniforms Fees2$130
Estimate for Supplies &Licensure Preparation Fees2$2,345
Technology Fee3($100 per semester)$800
General Education Resource Fee4$500
Estimated Total Program Costs$153,096.50

1 Effective April 1, 2022, the Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) assessment rate will be two dollars and fifty cents ($2.50) per one thousand dollars ($1,000) of institutional charges.

The State of California established the Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) to relieve or mitigate economic loss suffered by a student in an educational program at a qualifying institution, who is or was a California resident while enrolled, or was enrolled in a residency program, if the student enrolled in the institution, prepaid tuition, and suffered an economic loss. Unless relieved of the obligation to do so, you must pay the state-imposed assessment for the STRF, or it must be paid on your behalf, if you are a student in an educational program, who is a California resident, or are enrolled in a residency program, and prepay all or part of your tuition.

You are not eligible for protection from the STRF and you are not required to pay the STRF assessment, if you are not a California resident, or are not enrolled in a residency program.

It is important that you keep copies of your enrollment agreement, financial aid documents, receipts, or any other information that documents the amount paid to the school. Questions regarding the STRF may be directed to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, 1747 N. Market Blvd. Ste 225 Sacramento, CA 95834, (916) 431-6959 or (888) 370-7589.

To be eligible for STRF, you must be a California resident or enrolled in a residency program, prepaid tuition, paid or deemed to have paid the STRF assessment, and suffered an economic loss as a result of any of the following:

  1. The institution, a location of the institution, or an educational program offered by the institution was closed or discontinued, and you did not choose to participate in a teach-out plan approved by the Bureau or did not complete a chosen teach-out plan approved by the Bureau.
  2. You were enrolled at an institution or a location of the institution within the 120-day period before the closure of the institution or location of the institution or were enrolled in an educational program within the 120-day period before the program was discontinued.
  3. You were enrolled at an institution or a location of the institution more than 120 days before the closure of the institution or location of the institution, in an educational program offered by the institution as to which the Bureau determined there was a significant decline in the quality or value of the program more than 120 days before closure.
  4. The institution has been ordered to pay a refund by the Bureau but has failed to do so.
  5. The institution has failed to pay or reimburse loan proceeds under a federal student loan program as required by law or has failed to pay or reimburse proceeds received by the institution in excess of tuition and other costs.
  6. You have been awarded restitution, a refund, or other monetary award by an arbitrator or court, based on a violation of this chapter by an institution or representative of an institution, but have been unable to collect the award from the institution.
  7. You sought legal counsel that resulted in the cancellation of one or more of your student loans and have an invoice for services rendered and evidence of the cancellation of the student loan or loans.

To qualify for STRF reimbursement, the application must be received within four (4) years from the date of the action or event that made the student eligible for recovery from STRF.

A student whose loan is revived by a loan holder or debt collector after a period of noncollection may, at any time, file a written application for recovery from STRF for the debt that would have otherwise been eligible for recovery. If it has been more than four (4) years since the action or event that made the student eligible, the student must have filed a written application for recovery within the original four (4) year period, unless the period has been extended by another act of law.

However, no claim can be paid to any student without a social security number or a taxpayer identification number.

2 The Estimate for Book, Uniform, and Supply fees reflect the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price totals compiled in December 2022 and are subject to change. Supplies become student purchases once issued to student. Students who drop or have been dismissed after supplies have been issued will assume ownership for these items and will not be eligible for refunds. For details on all of the supplies, contact the Bursar Office.

BSN | Supplies issued in NURS 101L Fundamentals of Nursing Skills Lab.

3 Technology Fee includes student technical support, Office 365, blended and online course delivery/learning management system, mobile app, student portal technology and access, and required electronic course materials/software.

4 The General Education Resource Fee includes costs associated with ATI Smart Prep materials. The General Education Resource Fee will be waived for Active Duty, Active Duty Spouse, Reserve, Reserve Spouse, Veterans, Veteran Spouse, Department of Defense employees, dependents utilizing parent's veteran's education benefits, and Veteran Affairs employees.

Note 1: Students who wish to take Challenge Exams will be subject to a fee of $100 for each Challenge exam. Please see the campus Bursar Office for a full price listing.

Note 2: Course Audits - If a course(s) is being audited.  credits for these courses will be included for the student's schedule status for billing, based on the schedule statuses and amounts shown above.  Pre-licensure Nursing students should refer to the program's Dismissal Policy for information surrounding course auditing.

Note 3: The Total Tuition Cost can be converted to Cost per Credit Hour by using the following calculation:

Total Tuition Cost (Summer I 2023) ($138,968) divided by the Total Program Credits (120) = Cost per Credit Hour ($1,158.07).

Total Tuition Cost (Starting Fall I 2023) ($143,136) divided by the Total Program Credits (120) = Cost Per Credit Hour ($1,192.80).  

Admission Requirements

BSN and LVN-BSN Admissions Requirements – CA (Effective Spring I, 2022)

    1. Submit a completed WCU application for admissions
    2. Participate in an admissions interview arranged by a university admissions advisor
    3. Submit WCU-approved documentation of high school graduation or equivalent (Please Note: Foreign high school diplomas/credentials or their equivalent must have an official evaluation performed by an approved organization.)
    4. Complete an enrollment agreement (must be signed by a parent or guardian if the applicant is under 18 years of age)
    5. Meet program-specific entrance requirements:
      1. Submit all postsecondary transcripts:
        1. Applicants with 18 or more postsecondary credits, from an institution recognized by an accreditation body approved by the U.S. Department of Education, will be evaluated on their cumulative grade point average.
        2. Applicants with fewer than 18 postsecondary credits, from an institution recognized by an accreditation body approved by the U.S. Department of Education, will be evaluated based on their high school cumulative grade point average.
      2. Applicants to the LVN-BSN program must provide proof of current unobstructed licensure as a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN).
      3. Must achieve an acceptable composite score based on entrance examination and cumulative GPA requirements defined as follows:
        1. Applicants with a composite point value of 8 or above (combination of entrance exam and CGPA) will be admitted to the program.
        2. Any applicant with an entrance examination score or cumulative GPA requirement below the requirement noted on our catalog page will be denied admissions.

BSN Entrance Examination Requirements

BSN applicants will have a maximum of two attempts, a week apart, to successfully pass the admissions exam. If an applicant does not pass the admissions exam after two attempts, he or she must wait a period of 6 months to retest and must provide proof of remediation. WCU only collects verbal and quantitative scores for SAT and ACT and must be within three (3) years of enrollment date. HESI exam scores must be within three (3) years of enrollment date. TEAS exam scores must be within three (3) years of enrollment date.

For additional information, such as transfer credit evaluation requirements, visit our catalog.

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Academic Calendar

New academic terms begin, on average, every 10 weeks. To get an idea of when each term starts and ends, view our Academic Calendar.

Simulation Centers

Technologically Advanced Sim Labs

WCU-Orange County offers an education that keeps pace with technology. As a student, you’ll enjoy access to technology-forward simulation labs where you’ll participate in hands-on learning with manikins developed to respond and behave just like live patients, from biological responses like blood pressure variation to behavioral reactions like tears of pain.

You’ll participate in a range of scenarios from routine exams to patient crashes so you’ll be well-equipped when the time comes to respond to a patient in real life.

Our simulations are programmed for a range of experience scenarios, including;

  • Pediatrics
  • Maternity/OB
  • Medical and surgical units
  • Mental health
Schedule an Info Session

We invite you to attend one of our informative presentations on our programs.

Clinical Placements

A Dedicated Team Supporting BSN Students

As a BSN student at WCU-Orange County, you have access to your own clinical advisor who will help you set up your clinical placement and guide you throughout the course of your preceptorship. Your clinical hours allow you to gain hands-on, real-world experience and build your confidence for when you enter the field as a new nurse.

Our team is here to offer advice and support you as you choose a preceptor and secure a local placement that fits your preferences and professional goals. Your clinical advisor is also active in streamlining approvals and tracking compliance so you have a seamless placement and focus on learning.

NCLEX Support

Helping BSN Students Prepare for the NCLEX

To become licensed as a registered nurse, you will need to take the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX). This exam tests the skills and knowledge you learned in your BSN program and clears you for practice.

The WCU-Orange County BSN program includes critical preparation to take and pass the NCLEX-RN. Support includes study guides, no-cost tutors, bootcamps, and NCLEX-RN advisors, so you’ll have all the materials and guidance you need to walk into the test prepared.

Career Services

Career Services Providing Hands-On Support

The WCU Career Services team offers assistance to students and graduates for everything from career advice to workshopping application materials to conducting your job search.2 These services are available to you beyond graduation, meaning you can access them at any time throughout your career.

Once you have determined your goals and preferred area of focus, our team can help you pursue work in a range of healthcare settings that are common for registered nurses, such as:

  • Hospitals (state, local, and private)
  • Ambulatory healthcare services
  • Nursing and residential care facilities
  • Government
  • Educational services (state, local, and private)3

Learning Outcomes

Upon graduation from West Coast University, students will have met the following program learning outcomes:

  • Support professional nursing practice decisions with concepts and theories from the biological, physical, and social sciences
  • Plan preventive and population-focused interventions with attention to effectiveness, efficiency, cost, and equity
  • Support therapeutic nursing interventions for patients and families in a variety of healthcare and community settings using evidence-based practice
  • Apply nursing process and critical thinking when providing holistic, patient-centered nursing care to diverse populations
  • Design healthcare education for individuals, families, and communities
  • Comply with the professional standards of moral, ethical, and legal conduct in practice
  • Develop an effective communication style to interact with patients, families, and the interdisciplinary health team
  • Model leadership with providing safe, quality nursing care; coordinating the healthcare team; and when tasked with oversight and accountability for care delivery
  • Use patient care technology and information systems when providing nursing care in a variety of settings

Featured Faculty

Sherri Poelstra, MSN-Ed, RN

Campus Dean, Nursing

Sherri Poelstra is the Campus Dean of Nursing at the West Coast University Orange County campus. In her role, she is responsible for providing leadership in managing, planning, and implementing comprehensive prelicensure nursing programs for WCU.

Prior to joining WCU, Poelstra served as a clinical coordinator and instructor at other educational institutions, and she also worked as a staff registered nurse. She has a master’s degree in nursing education, a bachelor’s degree in nursing, an associate degree in nursing, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology.

With a passion for service, Poelstra has volunteered in the children’s ministry at her church for over 10 years and has participated in various mission trips to New Mexico, where she witnessed and taught CPR to the Navajo Nation.

Angelo Reyes, MA

Campus Associate Dean of Nursing, Administration

Angelo Reyes is the Campus Associate Dean of Nursing and Administration for West Coast University’s Orange County campus. At WCU-OC, Reyes’ responsibilities include managing recruitment and onboarding for faculty and associates, assisting with faculty training, disseminating information about guidelines and procedures, and monitoring the department’s budget.

Reyes joined WCU in 2014 and worked in various administrative roles in Student Affairs prior to assuming his current associate dean position. With previous experience as a behavior specialist and coach, Reyes is a recipient of the Annual Pillsbury Award for excellence in behavioral intervention.

Reyes’ educational background includes an  M.A. in educational counseling with a Pupil Personnel Services (PPS) credential and a B.A. in psychology.


How long does it take to complete the BSN program at WCU-Orange County?

At WCU-Orange County, you can earn your Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in 39 months (a little over three years).

Can you obtain a BSN if you already have a bachelor's degree?

Yes. Our BSN program at WCU is intended for any individual who wants to become a registered nurse regardless of any other undergraduate degrees they already have.

What kind of master’s degree can you get with a BSN?

At WCU, we have nursing, healthcare, and business graduate programs available for BSN graduates who are interested in continuing their education. One of our more popular options for BSN graduates is our Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program, through which students can choose a nursing specialization. (We have both advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) tracks and non-APRN specialty tracks available). We also have an RN to MSN program for students who will begin their program after obtaining their RN licensure (no bachelor’s degree required).

Additional programs include our Master of Public Health, Master of Health Administration, and our Master of Business Administration programs.

What is the difference between an RN and a BSN?

An RN designation is a state-issued license that allows someone to work as a registered nurse. On the other hand, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is a degree from an accredited institution that can help someone prepare for licensure and a career as a registered nurse. A BSN prepares you for practice as an RN and to pass the required licensure exam (NCLEX-RN), but you do not have to hold a BSN degree to pursue RN licensure.

Many aspiring nurses choose to pursue a BSN degree to give them a greater advantage in their future career. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), 77.4% of employers are expressing a strong preference for BSN program graduates.4


Is financial aid available?

Eligible BSN candidates may apply for available financial aid and scholarships. You can find information and instructions for scholarships available at WCU-Orange County, such as the Centennial Merit Scholarship on the Undergraduate On-Ground Scholarships and Grants page of our online catalog. You’re also welcome to consult with our WCU-Orange County team of financial aid advisors, who can help you find ways to finance your Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. More information is available on our Financial Aid page.

The baccalaureate degree program in nursing, master’s degree program in nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice program, and post-graduate APRN certificate program at West Coast University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education 655 K Street, Suite 750, Washington DC 20001, (202) 877-6791 (

Have Questions?

Pursuing your degree is a big choice. Fill out our form and one of our admissions advisors will contact you to answer any questions you may have!

1 American Association of Colleges of Nursing, Nursing Fact Sheet, Updated Sept. 2022

2 WCU provides career guidance and assistance but cannot guarantee employment.

3 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Registered Nurses, “Work Environment,” Updated Sept. 8, 2022

4 American Association of Colleges of Nursing, “Employment of New Nurse Graduates and Employer Preferences for Baccalaureate-Prepared Nurses,” October 2021

*The views and opinions expressed are those of the individuals and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs or position of the school or of any instructor or student.

Financial aid and scholarships are available for those who qualify.