Commitment, Caring and Leadership

Thanks for visiting the PLU School of Nursing! Learn about the mission, history and programs offered, as well as download application materials. Health professionals looking to stay abreast of current issues or return to practice can read about courses offered through Continuing Nursing Education. Our current students can keep informed of important dates and events and download required paperwork. Nursing alumni can learn about current events at the School of Nursing, keep in touch with their fellow graduates, and find ways to contribute to nursing education at PLU.

2023 SIGMA inductees
Congratulations to our 2023 SIGMA inductees!
Give to the School of Nursing

The School of Nursing Fund for Excellence offers extraordinary learning opportunities that complements and enhances the academic studies of our students.

Undergraduate Programs

Students work with outstanding faculty and staff to gain knowledge and skills, share professional experiences with expert clinical preceptors, and become exceptional nurses.

BSN Information Sessions

Prospective BSN students are encouraged to attend an information session to learn more about the program, meet an admissions coordinator, and visit campus.

Graduate Nursing Programs

Graduate nursing education is a multifaceted, dynamic, and rigorous process organized to prepare professional nurses for advanced nursing practice roles.


PLU Nursing Programs Compared

Three of PLU’s Nursing programs – the traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), and the Entry-Level Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) do not require that you have any prior Nursing experience. So how do you know which one is right for you?

Please note that applicants must decide between applying for our Traditional Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) program on our Tacoma campus, our Accelerated Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) program in Lynwood, and our Entry Level Master’s of Science in Nursing (ELMSN) program on our Tacoma campus. Applicants are not allowed to have an active application for more than one program concurrently, as per our admissions process.

If you’re a high school senior (including Running Start) or a transfer student with fewer than 60 college credits, our traditional BSN is likely your best option. If you have 60+ non-nursing college credits or a non-nursing bachelor’s degree, you should consider our Accelerated BSN or Entry-Level MSN. 

Take a look through the comparison chart below for more information.

RequirementsTraditional BSNAccelerated BSN (ABSN)Entry-Level MSN
PrerequisitesStudents who want to enter the nursing professionStudents who want to enter the nursing profession Students who want to enter the nursing field and advance to leadership roles
Admission ProcessNCLEX-RNNCLEX-RN
Professional Certification EligibilityN/AN/ACertified Nurse Leader (CNL)
Certified Nurse Educator (CNE)
Credentials*Registered Nurse (RN)Registered Nurse (RN)RN and the CNL or CNE
Program length4 years if entering as a first year student
2 years if entering as a transfer student
16 months (BSN-preparation)15 months (RN-preparation) +
12 months (MSN + Nursing Leadership or Nursing Education)
Start termFall, SpringFall, Spring, SummerSummer
CurriculumGeneral education courses + nursing specific courses + clinical experiencesNursing-specific courses + clinical experiencesNursing-specific courses + advanced-level leadership courses + clinical experiences
Learning Format & LocationFull-time, combination of in-person courses, skills and simulation labs and clinical rotations (PLU Main Campus, Tacoma)Full-time, combination of online courses and in-person skills/simulation labs and clinical rotations (PLU Satellite Campus, Lynnwood)Full-time, combination of in-person courses, skills and simulation labs and clinical rotations (PLU Main Campus, Tacoma)
Employment outlookProjected RN job growth is almost two times faster than the average for all occupations.
WA median salary: $101K
Projected RN job growth is almost two times faster than the average for all occupations.
WA median salary: $101K
Created to improve patient outcomes with clinical leadership as a Quality Improvement (QI) leader.
WA median salary: $130K
Job growth for nurse leaders: 28.3%
Eligibility, Prerequisites & How to Apply LinksFirst Year

Admission Process
How to Apply

*Once examinations are passed and licensure is obtained

Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education logo


The School of Nursing is a member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) and is approved by the Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice, and post-graduate APRN certificate programs at Pacific Lutheran University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education  ( The Care and Outcomes Manager MSN curriculum meets requirements for the Clinical Nurse Leader national certification examination. The Family Nurse Practitioner track meets requirements for ANCC and AANP national certification examinations and the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse practitioner track meets requirements for ANCC national certification examination.