Pre-Nursing Post-Baccalaureate Certificate

The goal of the Pre-Nursing Post-Bac Certificate Program (PNPBCP) is to guide participants through the entire preparation and application process as competitive applicants to graduate nursing, physician assistant, and similar schools. The Program is suited for students who need to take nursing school prerequisites for the first time or retake such courses to be competitive in the admission process for health professional schools. Yearly cohorts of approximately 30 students will take nursing school prerequisite courses in biology, chemistry, mathematics, communication, as well as auxiliary coursework in the form of discussion sections, and a Health Professions Colloquium. Optional preliminary and/or more advanced coursework in biology, chemistry, mathematics, public health, nutrition and/or psychology will be available as needed. The program begins in the early summer and runs continuously for three-four semesters, and is supervised by a Leadership Team that includes the Program’s Director and Co-Director. The Leadership Team writes a comprehensive Committee Letter that may be submitted with the student’s nursing school application. Federal and/or private loans may be available to program participants.

Admissions Requirements and Application Process 

  • Applicants must have graduated from a regionally accredited institution of higher learning with a baccalaureate or higher degree and a GPA of 2.5 or above for their most recent 60-semester units (90 quarter units) of coursework. However, because of the limited number of students that can be accommodated by the Program, applicants with higher GPAs will have an advantage in being admitted.
  • Applicants must apply through Cal State Apply; instructions can be found at Official transcripts from all colleges and two letters of recommendation are also required. Admissions decisions are made by the PHPCP and PNPBCP and admission offers are issued by the SF State Division of Graduate Studies.
  • Students whose primary language is not English must earn a minimum score of 550 on the paper version of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a minimum score of 213 on the computer-based version.

Admission Dates

Start Semester Cal State Apply Application Open Application Deadline
Summer October 1 – March 1 March 1
Fall October 1 – April 15 April 15
Spring August 1 – October 1 October 1

Pre-Nursing Certificate Program – 30 units

Students will earn the certificate after completing the required Health Professions Colloquium (SCI 695) and 28 units taken from the courses shown in the table below. Note: A maximum of 15 units may be transferred in from courses taken at accredited undergraduate institutions prior to entering the PNPBCP .

Plan of Study Grid
First Semester - SummerUnits
MATH 124 Elementary Statistics 1 3
PSY 431 Developmental Psychology 3
SCI 124 Mathematics Concepts: Elementary Statistics 1
SCI 239 Introduction to Health Professions 2
Second Semester - Fall
BIOL 328 Human Anatomy 4
CHEM 101 Survey of Chemistry 3
CHEM 102 Survey of Chemistry Laboratory 1
NUTR 253 Nutrition, Health, and Disease 3
Third Semester - Spring
BIOL 210 General Microbiology and Public Health 3
BIOL 211 General Microbiology and Public Health Laboratory 1
BIOL 212 Principles of Human Physiology 3
BIOL 213 Principles of Human Physiology Laboratory 1
 Total Units28

MATH 124 is a 10-week course.

Supplemental Courses

The following courses are not required, but are offered as optional/supplemental courses to be taken at the students' discretion. In some cases, students may take supplemental courses in place of required courses as appropriate and in consultation with an advisor.

BIOL 100Human Biology3
BIOL 101Human Biology Laboratory1
COMM 150Fundamentals of Oral Communication3
PH 825Epidemiology3
SCI 1031
SCI 110Science Concepts: Human Biology1
SCI 210Science Concepts: General Microbiology and Public Health1
SCI 235Science Concepts2
SCI 328Science Concepts: Human Anatomy1
SCI 610Science Concepts: Principles of Human Physiology1