Associate Degree in Nursing

(This information is provided for current students only. The associate degree program is not accepting new students. Prospective students should review the bachelor's degree program in Nursing instead.)


The associate degree in Nursing is a concentrated two-year program that includes a combination of science, liberal arts, and focused nursing courses. After earning an associate degree students are eligible to take the national examination for licensure (NCLEX) as registered nurses.

The program is designed to provide students with the fundamental skills of nursing: evaluating and supporting the health and wellness status of individuals and families, and applying nursing research to clinical situations. Students participate in clinical experiences, including state-of-the-art simulation. Penn State Behrend offers advanced placement for licensed practical nurses.

Students in Penn State Behrend’s nursing program are challenged to grow as they develop critical-thinking skills, intellectual curiosity, and disciplined modes of inquiry. The program is designed to offer a seamless articulation for associate degree students who wish to complete the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.

Typical Course Sequence

Below is a typical course sequence for the Nursing associate degree program. Schedules will vary by student, depending on areas of interest.

Current students: Refer to the University Bulletin for course descriptions and more degree requirements. Or find other resources on the Current Students page.

Semester 1 Credits   Semester 2 Credits
Mammalian Anatomy 4 Physiology 3
Rhetoric and Composition 3 Physiology Laboratory 1
Nursing Roles 4 Childbearing Care 3
Health Patterns 4 Childrearing Care 3
Introduction to Human Development and Family Studies 3 Clinical Immersion I: Intro to Concepts of Illness 2
Total Credits 18 Introductory Sociology 3
    Introduction to General Psychology 3
    Total Credits 18
Semester 3     Semester 4  
Math course 3 Humanities course 3
Elementary Microbiology 3 Arts course 3
Elementary Microbiology Laboratory 1 Nursing Interventions III 5
Nursing Interventions I 5 Nursing Care of Clients with Psychiatric/Mental Health Disorders 3
Nursing Interventions II 4 Clinical Immersion II: Intro to Concepts of Leadership 2
Total Credits 16 Total Credits 16