Already Have a Bachelor's Degree? In 15 Months, You Can Become a Registered Nurse.

Why Carlow for Your Second Degree BSN?

With Carlow University's Second Degree in Nursing program, you can use your bachelor's degree, no matter what field it's in, to fast track your way into one of today's most in-demand professions and earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).

Once you graduate, Carlow nursing faculty know you'll be in-demand in the health care system here in western Pennsylvania and around the country. Hospitals and health-care providers are looking for nurses who can come into the profession with critical-thinking skills, strong problem-solving abilities, and a proven record of success in the classroom, all of which Carlow prepares you for.

There's never been a better time to become a nurse. Request more information to get going today!

Second Degree BSN Program Highlights

  • Private university located in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Medical District with a strong reputation for the quality of our nursing programs—and close ties with area health care providers
  • Accelerated 15-month curriculum
  • The BSN at Carlow University is accredited by the CCNE (Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education)
  • 60 credits (once pre-requisites are completed)
  • Carlow graduates have the highest NCLEX-RN pass rate pass rate in Pittsburgh in recent years
Carlow Nursing graduates are known for their professional knowledge and skills. Employers have expressed a preference to hire Second Degree BSN graduates and value the additional education and experience they bring to the workplace. Carlow’s strong network and relationships with area employers also facilitates placement for our graduates. 


Second Degree BSN Admissions Requirements

  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college/university in a major other than nursing;
  • GPA of 3.00 with appropriate pre-requisite course work.

Please note:  Admission to the Carlow Second Degree in Nursing program also requires that you have not been dismissed from a previous BSN program, including Carlow, and that you have not failed in any previous BSN nursing program. 


Carlow’s Second Degree in Nursing curriculum is offered in an accelerated format over 15 months. There are 28 credits of prerequisites, and 60 credits of nursing core classes. You may transfer up to 60 credits of non-nursing credits to save time and money on your degree. 

For added flexibility, we offer some courses in 8-week sessions, while others are 16 weeks in length. The program is offered on-site with an occasional option for online courses and runs fall, spring, and summer. 

Once pre-requisites are completed, students complete the nursing-specific 60 credits and are eligible to take the NCLEX-RN licensure exam upon graduation. 

Curriculum: Pre-requisites (28 credits) + Non-Nursing Pre-requisite (32 credits) + Nursing core (60 credits) = 120 credits.

Note: Up to 60 Non-Nursing credits may be transferred. 

Non-Nursing Pre-Requisites (32 credits)

Must be completed within the last 5 years:

  • Anatomy & Physiology I w/Lab (4 Credits) 
  • Anatomy & Physiology II w/Lab (4 Credits)
Must be completed within the last 10 years:
  • Chemistry w/Lab (4 Credits) 
  • Life Span Development (3 Credits) 
  • Microbiology w/Lab (4 Credits) 
  • Nutrition (taught by a registered dietitian and approved by Carlow) (3 Credits) 
  • Pathophysiology (3 or 4 Credits) 
  • Sociology (3 Credits) 
  • Statistics (3 Credits) 

Where Our Graduates Go

This is just a small sample of where recent graduates of Carlow are working: 

  • Cleveland Clinic
  • UPMC Passavant, Shadyside, St. Margaret, Mercy
  • Excela Health
  • Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Allegheny General Hospital
  • Department of Veteran Affairs
  • Penn State
  • Monongahela Valley Hospital

Second Degree BSN Course Schedule 

Fall I Courses (16 total credits)

NU110 Wellness 15 wk, 3 credits
NU102 Professional Issues 15 wk, 1 credit
NU2161/2162 Health Assess CAP I, 3+1 credits
NU223 Pharm I CAP I, 1 credit
NU2171/2172 Health Promotion CAP II, 3+1 credits
NU224 Pharm II Cap II, 3 credits

Spring Courses (19 total credits)

NU3161/3162 Nursing Care Children 15 wk, 3+1 credits
NU3171/3172 Nursing Care Women 15 wk, 3+1 credits
NU3181/3182 Nursing Care Adult I CAP I, 3+1 credits
NU3191/3192 Nursing Care Adult II CAP II, 3+1 credits

Summer Courses (9 total credits)

NU 320 Research 15 wk, 3 credits
NU3121/3122 Neuropsychiatric Nursing, 3+1 credits
NU4211/4212 Complex Problems I, 3+2 credits
NU415 NCLEX Seminar, 0 credits

Fall II Courses (16 total credits)

NU420 LEPI 15 wk, 2 credits
NU111/4112 Leadership 15 wk, 2+2 credits
NU422 Complex Problems II, 2 credits
NU463 Evidence-Based Capstone 15 wk, 1 credit
Epidemiology 15 wk, 3 credits
NU4181/4182 Community Nursing 15 wk, 3+1 credits
NU4151 NLCLEX Seminar II CAP II, 0 credits


How To Apply

Submit a completed application form online. Submit an official transcript from each college and/or proprietary school previously attended—whether or not credit was earned—to the Office of Admissions; in some instances, an official high school transcript may also be required. Arrange for a personal interview and a campus visit—both are optional but strongly recommended.