Frequently Asked Questions

CCNE Accredited

American Association of Colleges of Nursing

Listed below are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive regarding the RN-to-BSN Program. 

Still have questions?  We invite you to contact us at (360) 650-6700 or to speak with a program representative or to schedule an appointment.


The RN-to-BSN Program at Western was developed to support nurses in completing their baccalauerate nursing education while balancing work, home, and school responsiblities.  The program is comprised of 4-quarters of full time or 8 quarters of part-time study with face-to-face classes scheduled one day per week.  Full-time course of study consists of 11-12 credits per quarter, which take approximately 35-40 per week for completion of the hybrid framework of face-to-face and online learning.  Full-time and part-time plans of study are available online.

We currently admit up to 35 students per cohort, with plans to increase enrollment in the near future.  Students are enrolled as a cohort, beginning fall or spring quarter of each year.

Applicants with prerequisites in progress will be considered, and may be offered provisional acceptance into the program.  Those applicants must have a  plan to complete all prerequisites before they begin RN-to-BSN classes at WWU.  We have found that students who were able to complete any remaining Humanities credits prior to the start of the RN-to-BSN classes were more successful with their plan of study.

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Western Washington University received full accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) through October, 2019.  CCNE is the accrediting body of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.  CCNE, One Dupont Circle NW, Suite 530, Washington DC  20063, (202) 887-6791.  

Western has also received approval from the Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission (NCQAC). NCQAC, 111 Israel Rd. SE, Tumwater, WA  98501, (360) 236-4700.

Western Washington University has been continuously accredited since 1921 by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).   Reaffirmation of Accreditation occurred in August 2011.  

Because students are or will be a registered nurse, the practice experiences build on previously-developed nursing skills.  Applied practice experience courses in which students are engaged in clinical field work/service-learning begin the first quarter of the program.  These practice experience opportunities take place in a variety of community-based, ambulatory, and hospital-based settings.

We are very aware of the sacrifices students make when they commit to continuing their education and will work with our financial aid department to make all internal and externally sponsored scholarship and loan opportunities available to students in the RN-to-BSN Program.   Because we know that many nurses make the assumption that they may not qualify for financial aid and do not submit a FAFSA application, we strongly encourage all applicants to do so by the required application due date:

A list of current scholarship opportunities within the collage is available on the Woodring Scholarships website.

For additional questions about RN-to-BSN financial aid, please visit; call (360) 650-3470 ; or email

Priority consideration for admission is given to applicants meeting all program requirements by the priority deadline listed on the program website.  However, applications are still accepted after the priority date and offers of admission may be provided on a space-available basis.  For program application deadlines and details about program application requirements and process, please visit the application page.

The RN-to-BSN Program is a self-sustaining program, meaning the program does not receive state-provided funds.  As a result, a base tuition is in place regardless of in-state or out-of-state resident status.  It also means that the use of state tuition exemption for state employees is not permitted.  Tuition is established each academic year and current rates per quarter can be found on the Student Business Office website under Extension/Self-Supporting Programs Tuition & Fees (at the bottom of the page).  In addition to the base tuition, costs for consideration include quarterly academic fees, textbooks, liability insurance, certifications, immunizations, and transportation to and from practice experience sites. 

It is critical that our nurses be prepared to meet new demands of an increasingly diverse population, the largest healthcare overhaul in recent history, and higher complexity in patient needs.  Continued education for nurses will provide them with the skills to meet these challenges and to provide leadership in the face of healthcare transitions.  The 2010 Institute of Medicine Future of Nursing report recommends that 80% of nurses have a Bachelor of Science in nursing by 2020. State-wide, 51% of RNs have a BSN, yet in our region of the state, only 35% of nurses are BSN-prepared.  With a BSN-prepared nursing workforce, increasing competencies such as social justice, nursing leadership, health policy, and patient-centered care will transform the health of our community.