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Accelerated BSN Second Degree Admissions

The BSN Second Degree program is for those that have a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field and are interested in pursuing a second career in nursing. This program is the most accelerated option available at Penn to complete your BSN as a second degree student.

Please note: The application deadline is October 15th for entry in June 2020, and the application will be available on July 1st, 2019. Applicants will be notified of our decision in early February.


Admission requirements

A complete application package consists of the following: 

  • Completed online application: please know that you may only apply to one program option, BSN Second Degree, BSN-MSN, or the Hillman BSN-PhD Program
  • Personal statement: you will be given the question once you start the application process
  • Two letters of recommendation: one of which must be academic; we urge you to choose recommenders who know you well enough to speak confidently as to your abilities and chances of success in this rigorous program; these must be submitted online, without exception, through the online application
  • Transcripts: Unofficial copies of all of your post-secondary transcripts, including transcripts for any classes you might have taken at a community college or while studying abroad must be uploaded for review purposes.

    • Official transcripts are only required if offered admission and can be sent electronically (from the issuing institution) or sent via postal-mail (addresses listed below).  Note: mailed transcripts can take up to six weeks to arrive at the School of Nursing after the initial request.
  • Standardized test results: The GRE is not required to apply to the BSN Second Degree program, but if you wish to submit scores to Institution Code 2911.
  • Video Interview: Question Prompts will be available once your start the application process  

Additional qualifications

A GPA of 3.0 or higher is preferred. Experience in a healthcare field—be it through a volunteer position or work—is also highly regarded.

Mailing address

Application materials not submitted electronically can be sent to: 

ATTN: Accelerated Nursing Programs
Office of Enrollment Management
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
Claire M Fagin Hall, Suite M-5
Philadelphia PA 19104-4217

 Electronic transcripts should be sent to admissions@nursing.upenn.edu.

International applicants

In addition to all required application materials listed above, you must submit the following:

  • Transcript Evaluation: Applicants with international degrees and/or coursework must have their educational credentials evaluated, course-by-course, using a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES).
  • Results from the TOEFL or the academic IELTS taken within the last two (2) years for all non-native English speakers. A minimum score of 100 on the TOEFL is required. The expected breakdown is as follows: Reading 26; Listening 26; Speaking 23 (26 is preferred); Writing 25. For the IELTS, a minimum combined score of 7.0 is required, with each subsection having scores of at least 7.0. Submit scores to Institution Code 2911.                                                                                                                                                                                                                    *Exemptions: Applicants who received a BSN or MSN degree in the United States or Canada OR your undergraduate degree was conducted in English are exempt from this requirement.

We encourage you to contact Penn’s International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) for information on everything from immigration paperwork to the various resources Penn provides international students.​ 

Applying while still in another bachelor’s program

If you are currently enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program, and want to start one of our accelerated programs, you may  apply for admission. However, our decision and your ability to matriculate will depend on the successful completion of your bachelor’s degree. Since all prerequisite courses must be completed before you can start the program in June, it is recommended that current students complete their degree by May 31st. Please note we accept courses completed online. 

You may also apply to the program while you work on your prerequisites; however, they must be completed before you can begin your studies with us.