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Nursing Programs

Nursing Programs Offered at CSU San Marcos:

Our Nursing Programs at CSU San Marcos include State-support and Self-support programs. All nursing courses (NURS) at CSU San Marcos are taught by our School of Nursing Faculty, yet administration of the degree programs differs according to whether the program is offered via State-support tuition or via self-support (the Extended Learning Nursing programs). The degree issued by the University (a B.S. in Nursing or a M.S. in Nursing degree) is the same whether a student has completed a degree program adminstered through the School of Nursing or through Extended Learning. Students in these nursing programs receive the same quality of instruction, and are taught in our University nursing facilities. More details for each program are available below:

CSU State-Support Tuition Nursing Programs Self-Support Tuition Nursing Programs
Administered through Extended Learning
  • Traditional BSN Program
  • LVN to BSN Program
  • RN to BSN Program
  • RN to MSN Program
  • Accelerated BSN Program
  • Master of Science in Nursing for
    those with a BSN in Nursing.
    Seven different Concentrations (see below)
Location of Programs:
San Marcos campus only

Location of Programs:
San Marcos and Temecula campuses

State-Support Nursing Programs

Traditional BSN


This is our 33-month, full-time, cohort program which leads to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).  Upon program completion, students are eligible to sit for the NCLEX State Board Exam (RN License Exam). This program is intended for students who do not hold an RN (Registered Nurse) or LVN (Licensed Vocational Nurse) license; although, students with an LVN license may apply to enter this program. 


This is our 33-month, part-time program which leads to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing for licensed LVN’s. Students will be admitted on a space-available basis each fall. Upon program completion, students are eligible to sit for the NCLEX State Board Exam (RN License Exam). The following is required to be considered for admission to this program:

  • A valid California LVN license and/or receive a valid California LVN license by May 1, prior to starting in the program; and either graduate from of a BVNPT-approved (Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians) Nursing Program (or program approved by a State Board for VN licensure other than in California but in the U.S.) or approved military training; and
  • Completion of LVN coursework at a regionally-accredited institution (WASC or other regional affiliate), at which college credit is earned for the LVN coursework and is reflected on a college/university transcript from a regionally-accredited institution, or approved equivalent coursework through military training.  Additional entrance requirements apply.  See our LVN Nursing Program link, above.
  • 1-4 students are admitted on a space-available basis in the fall only.
  • Students attend part-time for the first year and full-time for the last two years of the program.
  • Students will be granted 17 units of lower-division nursing credit for their LVN coursework or Corpsmen/Medic military training.

  • Other admission criteria apply

Self-Support Nursing Programs Administered Through Extended Learning:

RN to BSN Online

A part-time program for California licensed RN’s which leads to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, offered through the University Office of Extended Learning.  This program is designed for the working RN.  Every effort is made to group courses for these program students.


A part-time, 4-year program.

Accelerated BSN Program


This is an accelerated, 22-month, Bachelor's degree in Nursing program designed for those who will have already completed a Bachelor's degree in a discipline other than nursing.  This program is being offered through the University Office of Extended Learning. 

MSN - Master of Science in Nursing

A 2-3 year program with concentrations in Nursing Education, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Clinical Nurse Leader, Family Nurse Practitioner, Advanced Public Health Nurse, Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Clinical Nurse Specialist.

Preparation of Clinical Nursing Faculty Certificate

An online program for preparing nurses in clinical practice for clinical nursing faculty positions.

Upcoming Programs

LVN to RN 30-Unit Option

The LVN 30-unit option is available to students on a space-available basis. We currently don't have any spaces available in this program. The Web site will be updated just as soon as new information becomes available on this program. This program allows licensed vocational nurses (LVN's) to complete no more than 30 additional semester units and then be eligible to take the licensing examination (NCLEX) for registered nurse (RN). Students will be eligible to sit for the NCLEX State Board Examination (RN Nursing License) once they have successfully completed this LVN 30-unit option. It is important to note that there won't be any degree awarded through this 30-unit option program, and a student's RN license will be stamped with "No Degree" by the Board of Registered Nursing. Please be aware that some states may deny licensure reciprocity for students who complete this LVN 30-unit option.

Interested students are also encouraged to investigate opportunities at Community Colleges which offer an LVN to RN Step-up program. Upon completion of such a program, students may then be eligible to apply and enter for RN to BSN program or RN to MSN program, which are flexible programs, designed for the working RN.