Accelerated Nursing Programs with a 2.5 GPA Requirement

Best Accelerated Nursing Programs with a 2.5 GPA Requirement in 2024

Last Updated on June 1, 2024 by II Editor

Are you interested in transitioning into the nursing profession but worried about not meeting the GPA requirements for nursing programs? Don’t let that hold you back! Some institutions offer accelerated nursing programs with a 2.5 GPA requirement, providing an excellent opportunity for students with lower GPAs to pursue their dream of becoming registered nurses. These programs are designed to be rigorous and intensive, allowing students to complete their degrees in less time than traditional nursing programs.


In this article, we’ll explore some of the top institutions that offer accelerated nursing programs with a 2.5 GPA requirement and provide insights on what to consider when researching and applying to these programs. So, let’s dive in and explore your options! 

What are Accelerated Nursing Programs?

Accelerated nursing programs are organized for individuals with bachelor’s degrees in a non-nursing field who want to transition to nursing. These programs typically last 12–18 months and are highly intensive, requiring students to attend classes, complete clinical rotations, and study for exams in a condensed timeframe.


Why choose an accelerated nursing program?

Accelerated nursing programs offer several advantages over traditional nursing programs:

  1. They are shorter, so you can start your nursing career sooner.
  2. They are designed for individuals who already hold a bachelor’s degree, so you can leverage your previous education to accelerate your nursing education.
  3. Accelerated nursing programs are in high demand, so graduates have excellent job prospects.

How to improve your chances of acceptance?

If you have a GPA of 2.5, you can improve your chances of acceptance into an accelerated nursing program by taking prerequisite courses to boost your GPA. Some programs offer prerequisite courses that can be completed before the program begins, while others require completion before applying. Additionally, consider gaining healthcare experience through volunteer work or internships, as this can show your dedication to the field.

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What to expect in any accelerated nursing program

Accelerated nursing programs are intense and demanding, requiring a full-time commitment. Students can expect to attend classes and clinical rotations for up to 40 hours per week, with additional time spent studying and completing assignments. The curriculum covers the same topics as traditional nursing programs but in a shorter timeframe. Expect to study anatomy, pharmacology, nursing theory, and patient care.

Top Accelerated Nursing Programs That Accept 2.5 GPA  

Below is a list of the top eight institutions that offer Accelerated Nursing Programs with a 2.5 GPA Requirement.


1. The University of Kentucky 

The Accelerated BSN (ABSN) program at the University of Kentucky is designed for individuals considering transitioning into nursing. Whether you have a degree in a different field, served as medical personnel in the U.S. military, or hold an LPN license, the ABSN program is tailored to aid you through a seamless career in nursing.

The University of Kentucky ABSN program can be completed in 16 months (including the summer term) and requires a minimum GPA of 2.5. With 54-55 credits, graduates are eligible to take the R.N. licensure exam (NCLEX)

2. University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida’s ABSN program is designed for applicants who have already earned a baccalaureate or relevant higher degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution in another field. The program is estimated to be completed within 15–18 months. The program requires a minimum GPA of 2.5 and the completion of specific prerequisite courses. Students acquire hands-on experience through clinical rotations in various healthcare settings. The program also prepares graduates to take the NCLEX-RN exam to get licensed and begin working as registered nurses.

3. Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

The School of Nursing at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center offers a 12-month accelerated second-degree BSN program tailored to students who already earned a bachelor’s degree from a prior college.

The program provides a comprehensive education to students, preparing them to face the demands of the healthcare sector in the 21st century as a BSN holders.

The program takes only 12 months (61 semester credit hours) and requires a minimum GPA of 2.5. The program has online coursework alongside clinical training led by designated clinical coaches and clinical nursing faculty. Furthermore, it is a Spring admission-only program. Applications open on May 1st and close by July 15th.

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4. Eastern Kentucky University

Eastern Kentucky University offers a specially organized ABSN program for individuals with bachelor’s degrees in different fields of study. The program lasts for 21 months and requires a minimum graduating GPA of 2.5 from the previous bachelor’s degree obtained. Admission is highly competitive, with limited spaces available, and selection is based on a comprehensive evaluation of the application packet and academic history.

To qualify for the program, applicants must complete the following course prerequisites: Anatomy & Physiology I (BIO 307), Anatomy & Physiology II (BIO 308), Microbiology (BIO 273 or MLS 209), Nutrition (NFA 201), and Statistics (STA 215 or STA 270), totaling 15–16 credits. The nursing requirements (65 credits) include theoretical and clinical courses, which can only be obtained by full-time attendance at Eastern Kentucky University’s School of Nursing. The science and nutrition courses should be completed within five years before entering the program.

5. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences offers an Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program for individuals who earned a minimum GPA of 2.5 in their previous bachelor’s degree program from a regionally U.S.-accredited higher education institution in the United States.

Furthermore, applicants must complete 58 semester hours of general prerequisite courses to qualify for admission. All general education requirements should be accomplished before the annual entry date, and these courses may be taken at any higher education institution that is regionally accredited. See the list of all prerequisites HERE.

6. The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh

The hybrid Accelerated BSN Option at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh is a nursing program that spans 12 months and requires a minimum GPA of 2.5. The program is designed for individuals with bachelor’s degrees from a U.S.-accredited higher education institution interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. The College of Nursing offers three Accelerated BSN cohorts each year, starting in February, May, and October.

The Accelerated BSN Option at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh pioneered accelerated nursing programs in the United States. Since 2003, the College of Nursing has successfully graduated over 1,100 accelerated nursing students, establishing a robust community of registered nurses with varied educational backgrounds and experiences. Learn More

7. Concordia College

The 12-month Accelerated BSN program at Concordia College offers a fast track to licensure as a registered nurse (RN). This intensive program is the best option for college graduates with a degree in a non-nursing major from a U.S. regionally-accredited college or University and is interested in pursuing a career in nursing. The program begins in January, ends in December, and accepts 16 students yearly. The program requires a minimum GPA of 2.5.

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Successful program completion qualifies students to take the Nursing Candidate Licensure Examination (NCLEX), which leads to R.N. licensure. Graduates also meet the eligibility requirements for public health nurse registration in Minnesota. See a list of all the prerequisite courses HERE

8. Cleveland State University School of Nursing

The Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program offered by Cleveland State University aims to equip graduates with a solid theoretical and clinical foundation to excel as professional nurses in today’s rapidly changing healthcare industry.

To be admitted to the program, students must have acquired a minimum GPA of at least 2.5 and enroll as full-time students for four consecutive semesters, starting in January and ending in May of the following year. Upon graduation, students can take the NCLEX-RN licensure exam, a prerequisite for obtaining a registered nurse license.

Before admission, students must complete the necessary prerequisites for the nursing major, which vary depending on the student. To be considered for acceptance into the nursing major classes, students must apply directly to the School of Nursing and submit all required materials. Learn more

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Final Thoughts

Whether you’re looking for a program that can be completed online or on-campus, several top institutions across the country offer accelerated nursing programs with a 2.5 GPA requirement, providing a fast-track route to a rewarding career in nursing. These programs offer a comprehensive curriculum, hands-on clinical experiences, and expert faculty to prepare you for success as a registered nurse. So, don’t let a low GPA keep you from pursuing your dreams of becoming a nurse. Take the first step today and explore these eight accelerated nursing programs to kickstart your nursing career!


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