What program options are available to obtain a nursing degree?
The major nursing associations classify nursing programs as either professional or technical level programs. Programs offering Baccalaureate, Master’s, and Doctoral degrees in nursing are considered professional programs such as these offered at UAMS.

Preparation at the technical level is offered in associate degree and diploma programs. These programs are approximately two years in length after which the graduate takes NCLEX and becomes a licensed RN. Graduates of these programs, who wish to continue their education toward a baccalaureate degree in nursing, may be required to take placement tests to validate knowledge and earn credit. Completion of a BSN degree can be accomplished in one to two additional years of coursework with the UAMS College of Nursing.

Program Options

What kind of nursing program does the UAMS College of Nursing (CON) offer?
The UAMS College of Nursing offers three programs of study in nursing. It is one of only three universities in Arkansas that offers the Baccalaureate Nursing Program (BSN degree), a Graduate Nursing Program (MNSc degree), the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP), and the Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD.). The CON is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Why choose a 4-year Baccalaureate nursing program instead of an Associate Degree or Diploma nursing program?
Those considering a career in nursing should consider a baccalaureate education as an entry-level into professional nursing.  A professional nurse must have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing (BSN) to:

1. Qualify for graduate education.

2. Acquire positions in management.

3. Qualify for admission to a nursing anesthetist school.

How long does it take to get a BSN?
Two years at an accredited college of your choice and then two years at the UAMS, College of Nursing in Little Rock.

What courses do I take during the first two years?
We will gladly provide you with a list of the exact courses you should take at the Arkansas College of your choice. Prerequisites include such things as English, Psychology, History, Algebra, Statistics, Philosophy, and several Lab Science courses.

BSN Prerequisites By College

What will I take in during my last two years at the College of Nursing?
UAMS nursing students begin clinical experiences in the first summer session. These experiences include simulated and hands-on clinical practice with patients in a variety of health care settings. The student is trained in health assessment and clinical practice in all major areas: medical-surgical, pediatrics (children), maternity, psychiatry, community health, and care of the elderly.

In addition to the clinical preparation, the baccalaureate nursing curriculum also provides preparation in nursing theory. Changes in health care are occurring rapidly and a solid knowledge base prepares graduates to make the decisions required of a professional registered nurse.

How many credit hours would I typically take each semester while in the last two years of the BSN program?
Approximately 14-18 hours per semester.

What is the Honors Program and how would I gain admittance?
The College of Nursing is now offering a BSN Honors Program for incoming junior students with outstanding academic records. Admission to the Honors Program is based on pre-admission test scores and entering grade point average. This program is designed to cultivate the top 10% of BSN students for graduate studies immediately after graduation, including the option of entering the BSN to a Ph.D. nursing program.

Do you have financial aid?
YES! We have loans, grants, and scholarships for those who qualify. The Financial Aid Office will welcome your inquiries at 501-686-5451.

Financial Assistance

What are the qualifications of the nursing faculty?
All nursing faculty are Registered nurses with advanced degrees in nursing and have graduate clinical preparation in the subject area in which they teach.

Where can I work after graduation?
Hospitals, Surgery, ICU, Pediatrics, Maternity, ER, Etc., Long-term care facilities, Clinics, Rehabilitation facilities, Psychiatric Units, Public Health Units, Home Health Care Agencies, Missionary work, Peace Corp., Military Service, School Nursing, Nursing Education, and Industrial sites.

What are the career and employment prospects for UAMS nursing graduates?
There are employment opportunities in nursing that provide job security. This is particularly true for professional nurses with a baccalaureate or higher degree. It is projected that nationwide professional level nurses will be in demand far into the 21st century. Many UAMS nursing students have a job secured before graduation and have been actively recruited by prospective employers. Beginning graduates may earn approximately $34,000 annually, depending on the job setting and location.

What opportunities are available for persons who have already licensed nurses (LPNs, RN Graduates of AD or Diploma programs)?
UAMS CON provides opportunities for LPN’s and RNs to complete the baccalaureate-nursing program. Some nontraditional options for completing required courses include CLEP exams and correspondence courses. Contact the College of Nursing Student Services office for more details at 501-686-5224.

I have some college credits from several years ago, are they still valid?
Yes, acquired pre-requisite courses are valid from an accredited institution on submitted official transcripts.

How can I learn more about the UAMS College of Nursing?
Individual advising appointments are available, call 501-686-5224 or email at to schedule an appointment.