BSN Programs in California

America’s “Golden State”, the state of California has considerably grown over the recent years in health services, education, financial services, trade, transportation, and manufacturing. The state is home to a number of colleges and universities. They offer programs in numerous academic fields, allowing students from all walks of life to pursue a higher education in the field of their interest. Pursuing the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program in California can be a suitable option as demand for registered nurses is expected to grow in the state in the future. In 2010, there were about 300,000 registered nurses in California, making nursing the single largest health profession in the state (California Healthcare Foundation). An aging population and technological developments are some of the drivers that will increase the demand for these healthcare workers.

BSN Programs in California

There are a number of nursing schools in California that offer BSN degree and allow students to develop an understanding of the healthcare system. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) cites that the BSN program is usually suitable for those who seek administrative, research or teaching positions.

Students in the BSN program learn about the role and responsibilities of registered nurses and also acquire problem solving, communication and leadership skills.

Admissions requirements

To enroll in a BSN program in California, you must:

  • Hold a high school diploma or equivalent
  • Submit SAT or ACT scores
  • Provide proof of English proficiency (for non-native speakers)

What types of courses will you study?

Students in the program cover a variety of courses that gives them an opportunity to explore various aspects of nursing care. In addition to completing classroom-based instruction, they also complete a clinical experience where they learn in real clinical settings and prepare for the challenges of the healthcare sector. Common courses in the BSN program include:

  • Community health
  • Nursing research practices
  • Health promotion
  • Nutrition

On completion of the program, students may learn how to perform the role of nursing care providers and undertake disease-prevention and health-promotion activities. Additionally, they may demonstrate expertise in using information and health care technologies.

What are the opportunities for graduates?

Getting the degree does not guarantee a job in the nursing sector. However, licensed registered nurses have typically found work in:

  • Offices of physicians
  • Home health care services
  • Government
  • Acute care hospitals
  • Nursing and residential care facilities
  • Ambulatory care

According to the California Hospital Association (2012), 56% of RNs in California work in the acute care hospital settings.


According to BLS, the median annual pay for RNs in California (2013) was $96,980. Income varies by location, experience and specialty.

What about financial assistance?

As many students may not be able to manage their nursing educational expenses, they may apply for financial aid to get funding for their fee, tuition and related expenses. Financial assistance for eligible nursing students is available in the form of grants, loans and scholarships. Students may apply for financial assistance options such as:

  • Allied Healthcare Scholarship Program (AHSP)
  • Bachelor of Science Nursing Scholarship Program (BSN)
  • Bachelor of Science Nursing Loan Repayment Program (BSNLRP)
  • Health Professions Education Scholarship Program (HPSP)

The state of California has a large healthcare system in which nurses form the largest professional group.


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