Associate in Science in Nursing admission process

The Associate in Science in Nursing (ASN) program at Columbia College enjoys respect statewide and across the country. Graduates consistently achieve more than a 90 percent pass rate on the NCLEX.   

Admission to the Associate in Science in Nursing program is granted on a selective basis.

The associate in nursing admission criteria include general admission requirements and completion of prerequisites.

At our campus in Columbia, Missouri, students are admitted to the nursing course sequence twice a year with selections made in July and December. At our Lake of the Ozarks location, students are admitted once with selections made in December.

The maximum number of students, including LPN and non-LPN students, varies per location.

To be admitted to the nursing program:

Introduction to Nursing (NURS 209) Testing Out Policy

Transfer students must submit official transcripts from every college attended.

Associate in Science in Nursing admission criteria

Candidates for the nursing program must first meet general admission requirements. Additional selection criteria include the following.

  • Completion of 12 prerequisite credit hours at the time of application or by the end of the early spring or early fall sessions with a grade of C or higher. The GPA used for acceptance into the nursing program will be based on your grades in the following courses, which must be completed at the time of the nursing application deadline. Prerequisites for the associate in nursing are:
    • NURS 209, MATH 106 (or higher), PSYC 101, CHEM 109, BIOL 110 and 110L, BIOL 223 and 223L or BIOL 326 and 326L.
    • You must have a minimum GPA of 2.75 for general education, mathematics, science and nursing prerequisite classes.
  • Achieve a competitive score on the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS®). The TEAS® exam must be administered at Columbia College to be considered for admission.
  • Possess the necessary functional abilities to provide safe and effective patient care.

LPNs also must:

  • Submit an official copy of your practical nursing transcript
  • Submit a copy of your current undisciplined LPN license 
  • Complete an acceptable application packet.

Selection will be based on a composite, and a minimum composite of 150 is required to apply to the nursing program. The composite is based on:

  • GPA of prerequisite courses
  • Test of Essential Academic Skills® score
    Additional requirements for those selected for the program
  • Urine drug test (those selected will receive more information)
  • Physical forms, including documentation of immunizations/titers
  • CPR certification by the American Heart Association, Health Care Providers course

Applicants taking the RN State Board Licensure Exam must have completed high school (or equivalent) and a professional nursing program.

Functional abilities

A candidate for the nursing program must possess essential abilities in order to provide safe and effective patient care.

  • Behavioral/emotional

    You must be able to maintain effective, therapeutic relationships with patients, families, students, faculty and other professionals at all times. You must possess the emotional health required for full utilization of your intellectual abilities. You must exercise good judgment. You must ensure prompt completion of all responsibilities involved in the care of patients and families.

  • Cognitive

    You must be able to evaluate and apply knowledge and engage in critical thinking in the classroom and clinical settings.

  • Communication

    You must be able to communicate effectively and therapeutically with students, faculty, patients, family and other professionals. This includes both oral and written communication.

  • Professional conduct

    You must be able to reason morally and practice nursing in an ethic and legal matter. You must be willing to learn and abide by professional standards of practice. You must be able to deliver safe, effective nursing care to all patient populations. This includes, but is not limited to, children, adolescents and individuals with various emotional, development and medical problems and needs. You must be able to adapt to rapidly changing environments and situations while maintaining a professional demeanor.

  • Psychomotor skills

    You must be able to to maintain motor coordination, strength, flexibility, dexterity, balance and sensory capabilities sufficient for safe and accurate assessment of the patient and performance of patient-care tasks.

  • Sensory/perceptual

    You must be able to utilize vision, hearing and senses of touch and smell to thoroughly analyze patient data and provide accurate and safe treatment/care.

Missouri Nursing Practice Act

Successful completion of the program does not guarantee eligibility to take the licensure examination

According to the Nursing Practice Act, licensure may be withheld or revoked due to controlled substance abuse, criminal prosecution and a variety of other offenses. A copy of the Nursing Practice Act is available at the Nursing Education Center and can also be accessed online on the Missouri State Board of Nursing website .

The Missouri Nursing Practice Act, Section 335.066: Denial, revocation, or suspension of license, grounds for, civil immunity for providing information.

Questions regarding the relevance of this section to a particular situation should be addressed to the director/coordinator of the program.


Take the first step to becoming an RN

There's never been a better time to pursue your goal of becoming a nurse. The demand for nurses continues to rise as the population ages. Start with an ASN to prepare for licensure examination.

Apply to Columbia College today at no cost
Apply with the Common Application
Apply at ArmyIgnitEd