Nursing Program


Minnesota West Nursing


We will accept applications for the 2015-2016 nursing programs from June 15, 2014 through February 15, 2015. Applications, transcripts, and/or supporting documents received after February 15, 2015 will not be considered for the fall 2015 start date.

You can begin general education courses any semester on a part-time or full-time basis. You must begin nursing courses in the fall semester on a full-time basis to complete the diploma or associate in science degree program in one year.

Practical Nursing (PN), Diploma


At the time of application, you must have completed or be in the process of completing all of the nursing program prerequisites. Prospective, transfer, current and returning students to Minnesota West should contact the campus Student Services Office for help with course advising regarding the nursing program.
  1. Completion of a federally approved NA/HHA (Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide) course of 75 hours or more in length after 1990.

    1. If a NA/HHA course has been taken within the past 3 years, the student is not required to be on the MN NA Registry.

    2. If a NA/HHA course is greater than 3 years old, the student must be on the MN NA Registry.

    3. A test out is available for those students that have taken a course after 1990 and need to obtain certification on the MN NA Registry.

    4. (Clarification:  If a student is just taking the NA course to meet the NA requirement for the nursing program, he/she does not need to test out at the end. However, the student will not be certified as a NA/HHA and will not be able to work in this role without the test out.)

  2. Completion of required prerequisite courses.

Associate in Science (A.S.) to become a registered nurse (RN)


  1. Licensure as a practical nurse by August 1.

  2. A minimum college GPA of 2.5.

  3. A minimum decision score of 80 on the NLN exam.

  4. Completion of required prerequisite courses.

Program Costs

Tuition and fees are posted on our website and are subject to change. Additional costs include:

  1. $12.50 per credit for fully online courses.

  2. Supplies, books, uniforms, transportation, and miscellaneous expenses.

  3. Licensure preparation testing (Kaplan) at end of program (included in tuition).

  4. Nursing Pin upon graduation.


Application Process for PN and A.S. Programs

Applicants to both programs must complete steps 1-3. Then applicants must complete instructions that follow for specific program (PN or A.S.).

  1. Complete the online Minnesota West Application for Admission, including the required non-refundable one time application fee.

  2. Submit official high school and college transcripts directly to the Nursing Department at the campus of application.  Some general courses required for nursing programs have a time limit of 5 years (i.e. Biology, Anatomy, Physiology, Medical Terminology, and Developmental Psychology).  The Registrar will evaluate transcripts for course currency upon admission to the program.

  3. Complete assessment testing.  Minnesota West has mandatory placement in courses based on the Accuplacer. The Accuplacer consists of tests in reading, English and math. You are required to take the assessment test unless deemed eligible for a waiver after showing a copy of your transcripts to a counselor or advisor. Test information and sample questions are available for your review purposes.

PN Program - Additional Instructions

  1. Complete the Practical Nursing (PN) Application Packet, which includes a separate application to the Nursing Program and an application to schedule a date for the required nursing aptitude testing.  (Viewing the packet requires Acrobat Reader - free download.)

  2. PN applicants must take the PSB Nursing Aptitude test which assesses general mental ability (includes verbal, math, and non-verbal), spelling, natural science, judgment, and personal adjustments. We look very closely at the math and science indicators. If you score below the 70th percentile, we will recommend courses that will help insure your future success. Sample questions are available. The registration form is included in the Application Packet. Testing must be completed prior to February 15.

A.S. Program - Additional Instructions

  1. Complete the Registered Nursing (RN) Application Packet, which includes a separate application to the Nursing Program and an application to schedule a date for the required nursing aptitude testing.  (Viewing the packet requires Acrobat Reader - free download.)

  2. A.S. applicants must take the NLN NACE I Foundation of Nursing Exam. You are responsible for the $75 test fee. The registration form is included in the Application Packet. Testing must be completed prior to February 15.


Acceptance/Selection Process to the Nursing Program

Admission to the Nursing Program is competitive. Applicants who have met the minimum admission requirements by February 15will be reviewed for fall admission to the program.

Admission to the nursing program is determined by a screening committee and based on the following criteria:

  • Nursing test scores (PSB test for Practical Nursing Program and NLN test for Associate Degree Nursing Program).

  • College GPA.

  • Coursework related to the degree requirements for the nursing program. Minnesota West will evaluate the college transcripts and post transfer credits to your Minnesota West transcript in accordance with MnSCU policy 3.21.

Applicants who do not meet the minimum admission requirements or fail to complete the nursing program admission process by the February 15 deadline will be denied admission to the nursing program. Minnesota West will notify all applicants in writing of their admission status in the nursing program within six weeks of the application deadline.

Please do not call to check on your admission status before April 1.

Requirements after Acceptance to the Nursing Program
  1. Completion of all prerequisite coursework.

  2. Current health insurance.

  3. Background Check. Minnesota health care agencies used for clinical experiences are required to obtain background checks on personnel providing direct patient care, including student nurses. A student background check form will be signed and submitted at orientation. Some clinical sites may require an additional background check.

  4. Prior to beginning clinical experience, you must complete and submit:

    a. Health History Form for Nursing/Allied Health Students. This form includes required immunizations/tests for Tuberculin (Mantoux) test, MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B series, Polio/Oral, and Chicken Pox.

    b. Current CPR certification from the the American Heart Association-Basic Life Support or American Red Cross CPR/AED for Professional Rescuers and Health Care Providers.

  5. You are responsible for transportation costs for nursing clinical experiences, health examinations, malpractice insurance, CPR certification, etc.

  6. You are required to take a standardized achievement examination near the completion of the program.  You are responsible for the cost of the examination.

  7. You must maintain a minimum grade of C (a 2.0 cumulative GPA) in all courses to continue in the nursing program.


Links to:
Nursing Program Webpage