LPN to BS in Nursing Bridge Program, BS

On Campus, Day
On Campus, Evening
Nursing student in the lab hanging a bag of fluids

In Short

The LPN to BS in Nursing Bridge Program is designed to transition the traditional or military trained Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) to the role of a baccalaureate prepared Registered Nurse.

Program Objectives
What will I do?
  • Synthesize knowledge from the liberal arts, sciences and nursing as a foundation for safe client-centered care
  • Incorporate basic organizational and systems leadership to provide quality care and patient safety
  • Incorporate evidence-based nursing practice including current research and critical thinking in the management of client care
  • Analyze information using information technology to improve patient outcomes
  • Examine the impact of health care policy, finance, and regulatory environments on nursing practice
  • Integrate principles of effective communication in professional practice
  • Synthesize knowledge of health promotion and disease/injury prevention in designing population focused care
  • Integrate professional standards of moral, ethical, and legal conduct into nursing practice

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Build on your training and experience to prepare
for new levels of patient care.

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Program Overview

The LPN to BS in Nursing Bridge Program is unique as it spans both School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education (SGOCE) and Day course schedules, creating an accelerated curriculum. This approach allows students to attain their goals as quickly as possible as well as stay on a schedule that works with their career demands. Courses offered or taken through the day division in fall and spring carry the undergraduate day tuition and fees. Courses offered in the evening, winter, or summer through SGOCE carry the undergraduate SGOCE tuition and fees.

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Don't forget to register for your NACE Exam

NLN Exam Registration Information and Study Guide Links

Update: The NLN has created a review publication with practice questions for the NACE Foundations of Nursing exam. For $55, candidates have 90 day access to a PDF workbook with general information regarding the NACE exams and test taking strategies. There is also a comprehensive overview that summarizes the important facts and concepts. In addition to the workbook, the candidate has access to a practice item bank with retired questions from the NACE exam. This material can be purchased in your student account.

The NLN has updated their Foundations exam as of 10/23/23. Test takers who take the new 100 question exam will need to achieve a score of 66 or greater to pass. Any test takers who took the previous 200 question Foundations exam require a 71 or greater to pass.

NLN NACE Exams are now done remotely, and on campus.

Onsite Exam Dates* 

  • NACE Care of the Child: March 26, 2024 at 5 p.m.
  • NACE Care of the Childbearing Family: March 19, 2024 at 5 p.m.
  • NACE Care of the Child: March 5, 2024 at 5 p.m.
  • NACE Foundations in Nursing 1.2S: February 13, 2024 at 5 p.m. 

*All details including location can be found on the NLN website after registering for the exam

To create an account for our institution go to the National League for Nursing (NLN) Testing Portal. (See also above document for test takers with more detailed information). If you have any concerns or issues with available computers for testing, please reach out to ndesche1@fitchburgstate.edu.

Additional Requirements When Enrolled in Nursing Courses

  • Annual physical examination, tuberculosis screening, and current immunizations
  • Current health insurance
  • Current American Heart Association Health Care Provider CPR Certification
  • Fitchburg State uniform, lab coat, name pin, watch, stethoscope, white sneakers
  • Meet Department of Nursing Technical Standards
  • Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI)
  • Drug screening by clinical agencies as requested per agency requirements
  • Health Education Systems Incorporated (HESI) testing within nursing courses

Students will receive a “Department of Nursing LPN to BS in Nursing Bridge Program Undergraduate Student Handbook” upon admission for current nursing policies and program details.

Career Opportunities

Once the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and the NCLEX-RN exams are completed, graduates are eligible to work as a professional Registered Nurse in various healthcare settings (e.g., acute care, primary and long-term care), seek nursing leadership roles, and apply to graduate programs in nursing.


Face-to-face courses offered during the day with some evening courses. One summer semester with day courses.

Experiential Opportunities and a Look Inside the Courses


Internships are a great opportunity to get valuable, real-world experiences before entering a competitive job market.
Read more about: Internships

Study Abroad

Take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad and you can do this in one of three ways: short-term faculty-led programs, exchange/direct enroll programs, and outside provider-led programs.
Read more about: Study Abroad

Nursing Labs

See what our students are doing in the simulation lab from transferring patients, general patient care, assessing the patients musculoskeletal system, post operative care to code blue scenarios. 
Read more about: Nursing Labs

Curriculum and Other Information

Grade Requirements
Courses with an asterisk (*) have a minimum grade requirement of 2.5.

Course Sequence
Nursing courses must be completed in the outlined sequence.  All liberal arts and science courses must be completed by the completion of the nursing courses. 

Admissions Criteria

The next cohort of LPN to BS in Nursing Bridge Program students will enter in the Fall 2024 semester. Applications for Fall 2024 admission will be reviewed on a rolling basis as space allows in the program. For full consideration of your application, apply now.

  • Current LPN license in good standing
  • Graduate of an accredited LPN Program with Cumulative Grade Point Average
    ≥ 77 / GPA ≥ 2.5
  • Successful completion of three specified National League for Nursing - Nursing Acceleration Challenge Exams (NACE) I PN-RN at determined decision scores. NLN Testing is currently available online (see LPN to BS in Nursing webpage for details)
  • Two letters of recommendation: one from a current employer and one from LPN program faculty on professional letterhead
  • Applicants must also complete all Fitchburg State University Transfer Application Requirements - What you’ll need to apply

Additional Admissions Criteria for Military Applicants

  • Current LPN license in good standing according to the Board of Nursing of state designated license
  • Graduate of Practical Nurse Course (300-M6) with a cumulative grade point average of ≥ 76
  • Two letters of recommendation: one from a current employer and one from a Company Commander or above on professional letterhead
  • Rank of E5 and above must provide latest NCOER evaluation

Transfer of Credits

Fitchburg State University has articulation agreements with many Massachusetts colleges for transfer of credits. Transfer of previous college credits is completed through the Registrar after admission to the program.

Transfer of Previous Science College Courses

Transfer of previously completed science courses (Anatomy and Physiology I, II, Microbiology, Chemistry) will be evaluated on an individual basis.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Some courses may be fulfilled through CLEP - Official transfer credit evaluations are conducted by the Registrar's Office when a student is admitted to the University.

Accuplacer Algebra Placement Test

Accuplacer is a Department of Higher Education (DHE) Requirement upon admission. Refer to Placement Testing for details. The Department of Nursing requires a score of ≥ 82 on the Accuplacer, or completion of Basic Math II with a final grade of "S" by the end of Year I - Spring Semester.

The baccalaureate degree in nursing at Fitchburg State University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

To earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, students are required to earn 120 credits in the LPN to BS in Nursing curriculum. Courses offered or taken through the day division in fall and spring carry the undergraduate day tuition and fees. Courses offered in the evening, winter, or summer through the School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education (SGOCE) carry the undergraduate SGOCE tuition and fees.

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