Associate of Science Degree in Nursing - Iowa and Nebraska

An aging population combined with a growing number of patients with access to health insurance is expected to create demand for more skilled nurses. Between 2014 and 2024, employment of registered nurses is expected to increase by 16 percent—faster than the average of all occupations.*

Associate's Degree in Nursing Program Highlights

  • The degree program includes instruction in the classroom and online, as well as laboratory and clinical settings.
  • Classroom and online activities include videos, tests and quizzes, simulations, and discussion boards.
  • Laboratory requirements are fulfilled on-campus, where facilities are equipped with the medical tools typically used in the field and simulators for clinical scenarios.
  • Real-world clinical experiences are incorporated throughout the program at various locations in your local area.

Please contact an Admissions Advisor for more information about hours needed to complete the clinical practicum requirement.

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Continue Your Education Online

If you successfully complete the associate's in nursing degree program and pass the NCLEX-RN® exam, you are eligible to enter the online RN-to-Bachelor of Science in Nursing completion program.

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Higher Education at the Highest Standards

Kaplan University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and committed to the highest standards. Our specific programs hold additional industry-relevant approvals and accreditations.

What are the Career Opportunities?

At Kaplan University, our Associate of Science in Nursing is designed to help you develop the knowledge, clinical skills, and work habits to direct and manage patient care, communicate with patients and caregivers, and participate as a member of a health care team in the nursing profession.

To become a registered nurse, graduates must pass the National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN®) governed by the state Board of Nursing.§

Graduates of our program who pass the NCLEX-RN® could pursue entry-level roles in the following fields:

  • Geriatric nursing
  • Maternal infant nursing
  • Pediatric nursing
  • Mental health nursing
  • Medical surgical nursing

How Do I Get Started?

Kaplan University offers multiple start dates, giving you greater flexibility with your education, life, and work schedules.

08

Nov

Online and Campus Start Date

November 08, 2017

31

Jan

Online and Campus Start Date

January 31, 2018

18

Apr

Online and Campus Start Date

April 18, 2018

05

Jul

Online and Campus Start Date

July 05, 2018

19

Sep

Online and Campus Start Date

September 19, 2018

05

Dec

Online and Campus Start Date

December 05, 2018

Curriculum: Campus

  • Core

    Total Core Credits: 35

    Total Program Credits: 110

    • CM 107: COLLEGE COMPOSITION I Change

      Building on your existing writing strengths will help develop a foundation for a successful education and career. You will learn strategies to express yourself with confidence and communicate your ideas effectively in personal, academic, and professional situations.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • CM 220: COLLEGE COMPOSITION II Change

      This course helps students apply research and critical thinking skills to develop effective arguments. Students will create professional writings, incorporating post-draft revision strategies and working constructively with colleagues.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • HS 111: MEDICAL TERMINOLOGY Change

      This course provides a logical understanding of the language of medicine. Basic prefixes, suffixes, word roots, and rules for taking a singular term and making it plural are studied, along with word analysis, word building, spelling, and pronunciation. These principles are applied to the study of the following systems: integumentary, skeletal, muscle/joints, blood and lymphatic, nervous, respiratory, and cardiovascular. Each body system is reviewed with anatomy and physiology; diagnostic, lab, and surgical procedures; and pharmacology for interest and knowledge.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • MM 212: COLLEGE ALGEBRA Change

      This course covers topics of algebra including linear functions, equations, and inequalities, systems of equations with two variables, polynomial functions, rational and radical equations and inequalities, exponential and logarithmic functions, ratios, proportions, variation, and graphing.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • PS 124: INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY Change

      This course provides a broad introduction to the field of psychology, one of the social sciences. Students will be introduced to a range of topics that offer insight into human thought and actions including what motivates us to study human behavior, ethical decisions, problem solving, and theories on memory, learning, intelligence, and personality. This course will highlight the use of critical thinking and the application of the concepts. In addition, it will draw on practical psychological concepts related to students’ personal and professional relationships. 

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • SC 246: FUNDAMENTALS OF MICROBIOLOGY Change

      Fundamentals of Microbiology will review basic microbial cell structure, function, and genetics. The role of microorganisms and their effect on humans and the environment will also be explained. Aspects of medical and public health will be emphasized, as will bacterial and viral diseases, parasites, immunology, and epidemiology. Course material and labs are directly relevant to studies in health sciences, biological sciences, nursing, and genetics.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

    • SS 144: SOCIOLOGY Change

      An understanding of the dynamics of human societies and group behavior is useful for any work environment or professional career. This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of the discipline of sociology. Students will explore society and social life through the study of language, culture, race and ethnicity, gender, inequality, education, deviance, and sociological theory and methods. Students are also encouraged, through course assignments and discussions, to examine the influences of society on their personal lives.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      Any college composition course

  • Major

    Total Major Credits: 75

    Total Program Credits: 110

    • NU 102: NURSING FUNDAMENTALS Change

      This course introduces students to the role of the professional registered nurse, the role of other health care providers, and the health care system from historical, legal, and ethical perspectives. Topics will include health and health promotion throughout the lifespan with a focus on the nursing process. Students will learn initial assessment and vital sign monitoring. With an emphasis on client safety, students will learn the fundamental nursing skills of communicating therapeutically, providing comfort, bathing and personal care, meeting nutritional needs, and assisting with mobility. Cultural diversity and care of the older adult will be introduced. Students will learn to effectively document client records and to provide reports to other providers. This course includes lab and clinical components.

       

      Credits:

      7

      Prerequisites Required:

      MM 212, SC 131, and SC 246 | Corequisite: NU 104 and NU 107

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 104: PATHOPHYSIOLOGY FOR NURSING Change

      This course focuses on concepts of pathophysiology essential to understanding alterations in body systems and developing professional nursing clinical decision-making skills for health promotion, risk reduction, and disease management across the life span. The course provides a comprehensive nursing approach to common alterations in body systems and addresses etiology, clinical presentation, and appropriate treatment of the disease process. 

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      MM 212, SC 131 and SC 246

       

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 107: PHARMACOLOGY FOR NURSING Change

      In this course, students are taught basic principles of pharmacology including its relationship to the health of individuals and families. Course topics include drug actions, drug interactions, therapeutic and adverse effects of drugs, food-drug interactions, drug classifications, and the basic pharmacology of commonly used medications. Emphasis is placed on nursing responsibilities and client education. 

      Credits:

      6

      Prerequisites Required:

      MM 212, SC 131 and SC 246

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 114: MEDICAL-SURGICAL NURSING I Change

      This course will prepare students to use the nursing process to care for adult medical and surgical clients. The course will focus on developing basic critical thinking, health promotion, communication, and assessment skills. Care planning, nursing interventions, patient education, and health care technologies will also be addressed. Course-specific content will include nursing care related to health care alterations in the following body systems: respiratory, cardiac, renal, endocrine, and peripheral vascular. Students will participate in clinical education activities in a medical-surgical acute or chronic care setting.

      Credits:

      8

      Prerequisites Required:

      Prerequisite: NU 102 and NU 107; Corequisite: NU 104

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 123: MATERNAL INFANT NURSING Change

      This course will prepare students to care for women and infants during the prenatal, labor and delivery, postpartum, and neonatal periods. Topics will include issues affecting childbearing families including fertility, pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum care, and common problems in infancy. The course will also address common mental health issues affecting families during the transition to parenthood. Through clinical and/or laboratory simulation experiences, students will address the health needs of women and infants before, during, and after pregnancy as well as throughout infancy.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      NU 133

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 133: MEDICAL-SURGICAL NURSING II Change

      This course will prepare students to care for women and infants during the prenatal, labor and delivery, postpartum, and neonatal periods. Topics will include issues affecting childbearing families including fertility, pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum care, and common problems in infancy. The course will also address common mental health issues affecting families during the transition to parenthood. Through clinical and/or laboratory simulation experiences, students will address the health needs of women and infants before, during, and after pregnancy as well as throughout infancy.

      Credits:

      7

      Prerequisites Required:

      NU 114

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 223: PEDIATRIC NURSING Change

      In this course, you will learn about normal growth and development of children, health care needs of children and families, health promotion, risk reduction, and childhood health problems of acute and long-term nature, as well as the influence of illness on the family. Through structured, sequential, competency-based clinical assignments and/or simulation experiences, you will develop plans of care that address the health and nursing needs of children and beginning/developing families.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      NU 133

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 242: MENTAL HEALTH NURSING Change

      In this course, students are taught the major theoretical concepts in mental health related to the assessment of needs and the planning of care for persons with mental health problems. Emphasis is placed on examination of mental health disorders and the various roles and functions of the mental health nurse. Through structured, sequential, competency-based clinical and/or lab assignments, the student will care for persons with mental health conditions requiring professional treatment.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      NU 111 or NU 113, and PS 124

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 262: MEDICAL-SURGICAL NURSING III Change

      This course will prepare students to care for adult clients experiencing complex multisystem medical-surgical, rehabilitative, or restorative conditions. The course will focus on the application of management, leadership, critical thinking, risk reduction, communication, and assessment skills. In addition to the refinement of clinical skills and knowledge gained in Medical-Surgical Nursing I and II, students will gain experience in practice management, leadership roles, and the use of health care technologies within their clinical practice. Clinical placements will take place across a variety of settings.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      NU 132

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 280: LEADERSHIP AND TRENDS IN NURSING Change

      This course is designed to explore the role of the nurse as a leader in the profession and in health care delivery. Through this course, students will gain a better understanding of leadership styles and techniques and will enhance their individual leadership skills in maintaining standards of care. The course also emphasizes the professional role of the nurse in assisting individuals in the community in locating and utilizing appropriate community resources. Principles and theories of leadership will be integrated and related to the role of the professional nurse in the delivery of care to individuals, groups, and communities.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      Last term and completion of all required courses in the program
       

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • SC 121: HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY I Change

      In this course, students are taught the anatomy and physiology of the human body. Topics include the various body systems, structures, cells, and tissues and the principles of homeostasis. Students are introduced to the organization and structure of the human body. This course includes a lab component.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      None

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • SC 131: HUMAN ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY II Change

      In this course, which is a continuation of SC 121: Human Anatomy and Physiology I, students are taught the anatomy and physiology of the human body. Topics include, but are not limited to, the cardiopulmonary, immune, gastrointestinal, urinary, and reproductive systems. These systems will be covered on a cellular, tissue, organ, and system level. This course includes a lab component.

      Credits:

      5

      Prerequisites Required:

      SC 121

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.
    • NU 297: CAPSTONE Change

      The capstone is designed to build on the concepts covered in nursing courses students have taken as a part of their program. This course assists the student in the integration of the competencies essential for the practice of professional nursing. The student will progress to more independent functions in clinical experiences. The clinical site will be dependent upon the student’s needs and based upon the joint analysis of the student and faculty prior to placement. Throughout the term, students will focus on preparation for the NCLEX-RN® examination. 

      Credits:

      7

      Prerequisites Required:

      Last term and completion of all required courses in the program | Corequisite: NU 280

      The number of additional electives required will be based on the number of credits needed to meet individual state education requirements for nursing students.

Curriculum: Concentration

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*Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Registered Nurses, on the Internet www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Registered-nurses.htm. National long-term projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.

Students are required to complete their clinical practice experience in Linn, Johnson, or Benton Counties for the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, campus; Polk, Story, Dallas, or Warren Counties for the Des Moines, Iowa campus; Black Hawk or Bremer Counties for the Cedar Falls, Iowa campus; and Lancaster County for the Lincoln, Nebraska campus.

Kaplan University cannot guarantee employment or career advancement.

§This program is designed, among other things, to help eligible students prepare for the National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN) exam sponsored by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. However, the University cannot guarantee a student's eligibility either to take any exam or become certified or registered. A student's eligibility may depend on work experience, completion of high school (or its equivalent), not having a criminal record, meeting other licensure or certification requirements, or the program or University itself having appropriate accreditation or licensure. Externship sites may themselves require a criminal background check or medical examination.