Admission & Progression Policies—Armstrong McDonald School of Nursing

College of the Ozarks, in its long tradition of excellence, offers a traditional four-year professional baccalaureate degree in nursing (B.S.N.). As a result of rigorous training and hard work, AMSON graduates have an exceptional record of success on the NCLEX-RN® licensure examination. Students are highly recruited by health care facilities for entry-level RN positions prior to graduation.

After acceptance to the College and completion of at least one year of nursing program pre-requisites, the student may apply to the Nursing major. Prior to acceptance to the Nursing major, a series of academic and physical assessments are required.

Admission to the B.S.N. program is competitive and selective and not all who apply can be accommodated. Applications for program admission will be reviewed beginning March 1 in the year prior to fall admission.  

Fees: Students applying to the program will be assessed fees for entrance exam/s, background screening, and/or drug screening. Students accepted to the program will be assessed fees each semester for supplies, uniforms, standardized exams, and random drug screen.


Enrollment in 200 level Nursing courses will be permitted only if the student has:

  1. Successfully completed of all pre-requisite courses (BIO164, BIO174, ENG103, MAT013 or equivalent, PSY103, CHE134, and CHE144);
  2. Earned a minimum grade of C- in the following: BIO 164BIO 174MAT 013CHE 134, and CHE 144. Students may only repeat one D or F grade (including transferred credit) to remain eligible to apply to the nursing program;
  3. Successfully completed BSN Program Orientation Competency requirements (ATI-TEAS pre-testing, Math Calculation and Medical Terminology assessment Tests, advisor meetings, and workshops);
  4. Earned a minimum cumulative (career) grade point average of 2.75. The minimum GPA does not guarantee admission to the program. The preferred GPA for admitted students is above a 3.0; 
  5. ACT composite of 21 or higher preferred;
  6. Achieved a 76% on the HESI A2 entrance exam (combination of comprehensive and/or selected sub-scores) (fee). The comprehensive score of 76% alone does not guarantee admission to the program; 
  7. Submitted a complete program application;
  8. Satisfactory character references and personal interview demonstrating suitability for the nursing profession;
  9. Satisfactory background screening and/or drug screening (fees);
    • social security # trace
    • state and federal criminal records check
    • national criminal check
    • Missouri Department of Health and Human Services Employment Disqualify List
    • Missouri Child Abuse Search
    • OIG Medicare/Fraud Abuse
    • NCIC (National Crime Information Center - Department of Justice)
  10. Satisfactory submission of health-related information.
    NOTE: The following health documentation must be on file in the Department of Nursing prior to August 1st to remain eligible to progress to nursing courses:
    • tetanus booster or equivalent within last ten years;
    • proof of polio series;
    • two doses of MMR vaccine or proof of positive immune titers;
    • tuberculosis (Mantoux) skin test (annually – valid August to May); and
    • hepatitis B vaccine, series of three.


 1.   The student may continue to progress in the nursing program according to the curriculum plan if they:

a. complete all prerequisite courses prior to enrollment in any nursing course;

b. earn a minimum grade of C - in BIO 214 and MAT 143. Students may only repeat one D or F grade (including transferred credit) in a required science or mathematics course;

c. earn a minimum grade of C (2.0) in all nursing major courses;

d. maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0;

e. demonstrate satisfactory performance of designated nursing skills;

f. earn a satisfactory grade in both the theory and clinical components of the nursing courses - in the event that the earned clinical grade is unsatisfactory, the course grade assigned will not be higher than the letter grade of D;

g. pass the medication calculation competency test at 90% accuracy each semester;

h. demonstrate full compliance with all standards of the nursing profession as defined by the ANA standards of practice, the ANA Code for Nurses, and Missouri Nurse Practice Act;

i. maintain current health requirements/CPR;and

j. provide satisfactory random drug and/or background screens; and

k. provide additional health-related information prior to clinical placement (as required by agencies).

  2.    If a student fails or withdraws from any nursing course, they may submit a written petition to the Admission and Progression Committee of the Department of Nursing requesting readmission.

 3.   Students having withdrawn from or earned less than a C (2.0) in a nursing course may be re-admitted to the program one time only.

 4     Students are accountable to follow all policies in the current Nursing Student Handbook.

 5.  All program requirements must be completed within five (5) years of initial enrollment in NSG253. Science courses up to 10 years old are accepted by the nursing department for transfer credit.

 6.   A student not progressing in the program in a continuous manner may be required to complete additional courses (or audit courses) based on curriculum changes.

Baccalaureate program policies that describe standards for progression are outlined in detail in the department’s Nursing Student Handbook. The handbook is updated and distributed at the beginning of each academic year. It is the students’ responsibility to obtain a copy of the policies and to be familiar with them. The policies are a guide as the student progresses through the program.


1. A student not following sequenced nursing courses in six (6) consecutive semesters must have approval by their advisor, Program Director, and Dean of the College (graduation extension process).

2. Prior to final enrollment in the nursing course, the student must demonstrate competence with expected level of nursing knowledge, psychomotor skills, medication calculation, ATI benchmarks, and culminating simulations. A fee may be charged for this process.

3. The student will be allowed to audit the courses they have completed.
4. All other program requirements stated in the Nursing Student Handbook (Section 6.2) apply to the rematriculating student.


Failure to achieve any of these progression requirements will constitute reason for the student to be dismissed (withdrawn) from the program. The faculty and administration of the Department of Nursing reserve the right to dismiss any student enrolled in the program for unethical, dishonest, unprofessional, or illegal conduct that is inconsistent with the ANA Code for Nurses and the College's Honor Code.


The Department of Nursing acknowledges the responsibility of readmitting only those students who, in the judgment of the faculty, satisfy the requirements of scholarship, health, and professional suitability for nursing. Students requesting readmission must apply in writing to the department Admission and Progression Committee. Each student situation is reviewed on an individual basis. Requests for readmission for fall must be submitted by February 1 of the year in which readmission would occur in the fall, or by October 1 for readmission which would occur the following spring. Readmission cannot be guaranteed to any student. Students following the curriculum plan without interruption are given priority for course enrollment.

Specific guidelines for readmission include the following:

A. Course repetition policies

  1. A nursing course may be repeated one time only (exception is NSG 201).
  2. Only one nursing course may be repeated.
  3. The course must be repeated within the next academic year.
  4. The course must be repeated successfully (2.0) prior to taking other nursing courses.

B. Students may appeal decisions based on course repetition policies in writing to the Department of Nursing  Admission and Progression Committee with the concurrence or recommendation of the academic advisor or course instructor. Decisions on appeal requests are the responsibility of the Admission and Progression Committee and may be approved or denied based on individual circumstances and an evaluation of the request.

C. Any student readmitted to the program will be required to:

  1. Meet college readmission criteria.
  2. Demonstrate a satisfactory level of knowledge from pre-requisite nursing courses.
  3. Successfully validate prior medication calculation competency and clinical skills (fee).

D. A readmitted student will be expected to meet graduation requirements in effect at the time of readmission and to follow the baccalaureate degree nursing policies in effect for that academic year.

E. A student must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 to be considered for readmission.

F. Students must complete all program admission requirements prior to readmission.


The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree is granted by College of the Ozarks to those candidates who have completed the credit requirements as described in the Nursing curriculum course plan and who have met all degree requirements of College of the Ozarks. A cumulative GPA of 2.0 is required to graduate from College of the Ozarks’ Nursing program.


Students intending to graduate should file a graduation check (audit) application with the Registrar at least three semesters before they expect to graduate. The student is responsible for assuring that their academic record is in order.

Prior to Department of Nursing approval for the candidate’s licensure (NCLEX-RN® ) application and release of transcript, an exit interview (Program Synthesis Portfolio defense) with the Department of Nursing is required. Additionally, all student accounts must be cleared and all clinical name badges returned to the Department of Nursing Office.

Completion of the program does not guarantee eligibility to take the NCLEX-RN® exam (refer to Section 335.066 of the Missouri Nurse Practice Act) as reviewed in NSG253 and NSG473 (included in the Nursing Student Handbook and as delineated below).  (refer to pages 17-20)