Bachelor's Degree

Accelerated Second-Degree Nursing (BSN)

Already earned a bachelor's degree but want to pursue a career in health care? Widener's accelerated nursing program will take your previous academic achievements further, faster. This unique, full-time program allows you to complete your BSN degree in as little as 4 semesters.

Nursing BSN student in clinical setting

Program Overview

Take the inside track to a career as a registered nurse through our accelerated, second-degree bachelor's of science in nursing (BSN) program. Designed for students with an existing bachelor's degree, this program transforms earned credits so you can complete your BSN in as little as four semesters.

Earn your degree in one of two locations:

  • Chester Campus located 20 minutes from both Philadelphia and Wilmington, DE. Courses begin in mid-August.
  • Harrisburg Campus located five miles from the Pennsylvania State Capitol. Courses begin in mid-January.

No matter where you study, our accelerated BSN program will prepare you to go further, faster.

The baccalaureate degree program in nursing at Widener University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.

Admissions Information

  • Completed application to Widener University.
  • Students must have already earned a bachelor's degree or must be in the process of completing a bachelor's degree prior to the program start.
  • Students must have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA from all previous colleges/universities attended.
  • Students must complete the following pre-requisite courses from an accredited institution prior to enrolling. For questions related to accredited institution requirements, please contact jcgilbert@widener.edu.
    • Chemistry (4 credits, including lab)
    • Anatomy and Physiology I (4 credits, including lab) taken within 5 years
    • Anatomy and Physiology II (4 credits, including lab) taken within 5 years
    • Microbiology (4 credits, including lab)
    • Statistics
    • Nutrition

Chester Campus

  • Regular action deadline: January 15
  • Final action deadline: March 1
  • Program start: students start as a junior in the fall semester

Harrisburg Campus

  • Regular action deadline: August 1
  • Final action deadline: October 16
  • Program start: students start as a junior in the spring semester

All applications submitted by the final action deadline will be reviewed and given consideration for admission eligibility.

Students studying at both our Chester Campus and Harrisburg Campus benefit from a highly competitive, flat tuition rate of $48,000.

For more information about the cost and value of a Widener degree, check out our value and affordability page.

  • Submit your official transcripts from all college/university post-secondary institutions. A course-by-course credential evaluation completed by a NACES certified organization will be accepted if the transcript is not in the English language.
  • If you require an F-1 visa, you must provide written proof you have adequate funding available to meet the expenses incurred while studying in the United States.

English Proficiency Requirements

If you did not earn a high school diploma, a bachelor's, or master's degree from the U.S., you will need to take an English proficiency test: TOEFL or IELTS. 

International applicants, immigrants to the U.S., and U.S. permanent residents are required to submit the results of an English proficiency test taken with 2 years. Accepted tests and requirements are as follows:

  • TOEFL Internet-based test (80 minimum/26 minimum on the speaking section)
  • TOEFL Paper-based test (550 minimum)
  • TOEFL Computer-based test (213 minimum)
  • IELTS (6.5 overall band score)
  • *ETS (TOEFL) school code for Widener University is: 2642.

A TOEFL score is required for students who have earned a high school diploma or bachelor's degree outside the U.S. or a non-TOEFL exempt country.

Seat availability for the nursing program is limited. Once seat capacity is reached, students may be placed on a waiting list and they will be notified as seats become available and as soon as possible. Admission into the program is not a guarantee for students placed on a waiting list. The waiting list is not deferred to the next available intake, but students can apply again if so desired.

Students enrolled within the Widener University School of Nursing may be considering licensure (NCLEX) and/or advanced practice certification. Each state/jurisdiction has requirements that candidates must meet in order to obtain licensure and/or certification. To view Widener’s licensure qualifications by state, please visit the School of Nursing Licensure by State webpage or visit the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) directly. 

Program Options

View Loading... requirements for the accelerated BSN program at both the Chester and Harrisburg campus.

Continue your graduate education at Widener through the School of Nursing's robust program offerings which includes master's, doctoral (PhD/DNP), and post-graduate certificates.

View Program Offerings

Program Highlights

2020 National League for Nursing Center of Excellence

For enhancing student learning and professional development

Nursing students in clinicals

Renowned in the Region

Our School of Nursing was ranked 16th in the Mid-Atlantic region and 8th in Pennsylvania among private colleges.

1 of 6

schools nationwide designated as a Center of Excellence for Advancing the Science of Nursing Education.

Founders Hall, home to Widener's School of Nursing, at dusk

Top 50 in Nation

Our School of Nursing is proud to rank #46 out of more than 1,100 private institutions evaluated across the nation.  

Source: Nursing Schools Almanac

 

88.4%

of our students passed the NCLEX for the year October 1, 2019 through September 30, 2020.

Lab and Clinicals

With an 8:1 student-faculty ratio in clinical settings, you'll practice in a supportive, individualized learning environment.

Female nursing student hands on in a clinical setting

Hands-on Learning in State-of-the-Art Facilities

Whether in Chester or Harrisburg, you'll go beyond the classroom in our state-of-the-art facilities. At our Center for Simulation and Computerized Testing facilities, you'll problem solve clinical scenarios and learn to apply what you learn in the classroom to real-world situations.

Nursing Student in Hospital Clinical Setting

Clinical Rotations within Our Network of Top Hospitals

Get matched within our network of more than 60 of the region’s top hospitals and healthcare facilities for clinical rotations in your junior and senior year. Whether in a large teaching hospital or small agency environment, you'll gain real-world clinical experience in a variety of specialties.

Female nursing student in clinical setting

Community-Based Service Learning

Expand your education beyond the classroom through community-based service learning. Experiences take place in various settings, including Widener's Community Nursing Clinic in Chester, PA, which offers pro bono medical care to uninsured or underinsured community members, partnerships with local schools and organizations to for local outreach projects, a senior citizens' apartment complex, adult day care centers, schools, and even clients' homes.

Faculty

You’ll benefit from close faculty mentorship from full-time nursing professors who are actively shaping the science of nursing education.

Shaakira
Clinical Assistant Professor

"My goal is for students to challenge themselves to become life-long learners who contribute new knowledge to this wonderful profession. Both novice and experienced nurses should take risks to seek out new learning experiences that ignite their passion for nursing and drive them toward improving outcomes for their clients."

Your Inside Track to Success

Your Inside Track to Success

Through our accelerated nursing program, you'll build a resume distinguished by career-specific learning experiences.

Recent Employers & Industry Connections

  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
  • Cooper University Hospital
  • Main Line Health System
  • Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
  • Crozer Keystone Health System
  • Christiana Care Health System
  • Einstein Medical Center
  • St. Christopher's Hospital for Children

Outlook & Outcomes

Potential Careers

  • Registered nurse
  • Nurse educator
  • Legal nurse consultant
  • Case management
  • Worker compensation nurse

Industry Growth

Employment of nurses is projected to increase % by 2029, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' Employment Projections. 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Employment Rate at Graduation

96% of students graduated with a job in 2019. 

Settings to Work In

  • Hospital
  • Health clinic
  • Long-term care facility
  • Outpatient setting

Take the Next Steps

Start your nursing career at a university that will put you on the inside track to success.

Visit Us

To visit Widener is, more often than not, to fall in love with the place. To fit your timeline and schedule, we offer a variety of ways to get to know us. Can't make it to campus? Attend a virtual information session for the accelerated bachelor's in nursing program.

Financial Aid

Our financial aid team takes the guessing game out of applying for financial aid. To determine your financial aid package, including scholarships and grants, apply and complete the financial aid process. You might be surprised at how much we can offer in assistance.

Next steps to apply

Applying online has never been easier—and it’s free! Take the next step toward joining the Widener Pride.

Get in Touch