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Nursing Programs


AS / AAS Nursing: Intro

Associate in Nursing Degree Programs

Excelsior's associate programs in nursing are specifically designed for LPNs, LVNs, paramedics, and certain classifications of active duty military, National Guard, or Reserves within specific military occupations with equivalent scope of practice to LPN/LVN or paramedic.

Working nurses and health care professionals come to Excelsior because they want to earn an accredited degree through flexible online courses, online conferences, and/or credit by exam options.


  • A student's possession of an LPN, Paramedic, or Military Corpsman credential does not guarantee success in Excelsior's Associate Degree in nursing program.
  • All applicants to the School of Nursing are expected to review the School of Nursing Catalog prior to enrolling in a degree program. 
  • Students enrolled in Excelsior's associate degree in nursing program will be assigned to a primary academic advisor but may also work with different members of the academic advisement team during their enrollment.
  • Students will be responsible for paying an annual fee for each year they continue in the associate degree in nursing program.
  • A student's success or failure in completing program requirements (including theory and other examinations) will affect his or her progress through the associate degree in nursing program.
  • The associate degree program is designed for individuals with experience in clinical settings. There is no clinical instruction provided in the associate degree nursing program.
  • The wait time to test at each CPNE® site varies depending on application volume at each site.
  • Students are responsible for the CPNE application fee, and travel and lodging costs for each administration of the CPNE.
  • Students who fail the CPNE will be required to retake all portions of a subsequent examination and are responsible for all fees associated with retaking the CPNE.
  • During the CPNE, Excelsior will seek to provide each student with a pediatric patient; however, an adult patient may be substituted if no pediatric patient is available.
  • Students are responsible for reading and understanding the RN licensure requirements in the state of their choice when planning for program completion or considering a change in their permanent address. Students may consult with Excelsior's State Board team and visit our State Board Requirements page for current information regarding eligibility for RN licensure in each state and U.S. jurisdiction.
  • Pass rates for the CPNE and National Council Licensure Examination-RN (NCLEX-RN®) are updated and available on the Excelsior College web site.
  • Because each institution of higher education maintains its own credit transfer policy, credits earned in Excelsior's Associate Degree in nursing program may or may not be transferable to other institutions.

Application Requirements

Before applying, it's important that you read and understand all of the application requirements for this program. If you have any questions, contact your admissions counselor. 

To be eligible for admission, you need to be employed in a direct patient care setting under the supervision of someone with a health care credential who evaluates your clinical practice. You also must have worked in this setting for at least 200 hours in the year prior to your application.

Note: Most of Excelsior's AS/AAS in Nursing graduates are immediately eligible to take the NCLEX-RN® exam. However, graduates in some states must meet additional requirements or stipulations before becoming eligible for RN licensure.

Program Page: Apply and RFI Links

Catalog: Nursing

Nursing Catalog

Review degree requirements, learning outcomes, course descriptions, and more in the Nursing Catalog.

AS/AAS Nursing: Program Info

AS/AAS Nursing Curriculum

To earn your nursing degree, you'll complete certain requirements, including:

Nursing Theory Series

Phases I and II of the associate program include eight nursing theory requirements that you'll fulfill by taking Excelsior online courses, Nursing Theory Conference Exams (NTCX), and/or Excelsior College Examinations (ECE®) in any combination. Learn more.

FCCA Intro

Focused Clinical Competencies Assessment® (FCCA)

Phase III of the nursing component is the Focused Clinical Competencies Assessment. This requirement consists of two eight-week clinical assessments delivered via the Excelsior College learning management system. Learn more.

CPNE intro

Clinical Performance in Nursing Examination® (CPNE)

In the final phase of your program, this assessment of clinical competencies focusing on your ability to identify, plan for, and meet a variety of patient care needs for adults and children with common health problems. After applying, the average wait time to take the CPNE is 12 months. Learn more or review pass rates.

AS / AAS in Nursing Credit Requirements

AS/AAS in Nursing Credit Requirements

Associate in Science in Nursing
Minimum of 67 credits: 3 in written English requirement, 1 in information literacy requirement, 6 in humanities, 6 in social sciences, 9 in natural sciences, 6 in arts and sciences, 36 nursing credits. Learn more.

Associate in Applied Science in Nursing
Minimum of 67 credits: 3 in written English requirement, 1 in information literacy requirement, 6 in humanities, 6 in social sciences, 9 in natural sciences, 6 in free electives or arts and sciences, 36 nursing credits. Learn more.

Student Learning Program Outcomes

  • Use a caring holistic approach to provide and advocate for safe quality care for patients and families in an environment that values the uniqueness, dignity, and diversity of patients.
  • Apply the nursing process to make nursing judgments, substantiated with evidence to provide safe, quality patient care across the lifespan.
  • Use principles of management and delegation to implement plans of care with members of the intraprofessional team to achieve safe, quality patient outcomes.
  • Demonstrate the standards of professional nursing practice and core values within an ethical and legal framework.
  • Apply principles of leadership and interprofessional collaboration to improve patient outcomes.
  • Use evidence-based findings and information technology to improve the quality of care for patients.

Review information about tuition and fees.


Accreditation: Nursing Specialized Accreditation

Specialized Nursing Accreditation

The associate, bachelor's, and master's degree programs in nursing at Excelsior College are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), formerly known as the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC). The ACEN is a specialized accrediting agency for nursing recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
3343 Peachtree Road, Suite 850
Atlanta, GA 30326

Recognition: Nursing

Center of Excellence in Nursing Education

The National League for Nursing (NLN) designated Excelsior College's School of Nursing a 2016-2021 Center of Excellence in Nursing Education, for the fourth consecutive time, in recognition of the School's sustained achievements in creating environments that promote student learning and professional development.

Important Info About Test Preparation Providers

Beware of Test Preparation Providers!

Excelsior College does not contract with or endorse the services of, or study materials sold by, any test preparation providers. Be cautious of anyone selling test preparation services or materials; whatever they may say to you, they are not affiliated with Excelsior College. As an enrolled student, you'll be guided to the right learning resources and services. Learn more.

Institutional Accreditation heading block

Institutional Accreditation

Institutional Accreditation universal content block

Excelsior College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. (267-284-5000). The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

All of Excelsior College's academic programs are registered (i.e., approved) by the New York State Education Department.

Transparency at Excelsior

Transparency at Excelsior Link