Mount Saint Mary's University (MSMU) Department of Nursing

Mount Saint Mary's University offers accredited traditional BSN, RN to BSN, ABSN, and MSN degree programs including the Nurse Educator and APRN Clinical Nurse Specialist specialty programs. Schools Scholarships Student Support

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Best ProgramsAccredited Public NonProfit

BSN   MSN   RN-to-MSN   RN-to-BSN   Entry-Level BSN   CNS   Accelerated BSN   Post-grad Certificate   Other  

Quick Facts

  • Named the No. 1 U.S. College, "That Adds The Most Value" - MONEY magazine
  • Rockefeller Brothers Fund Fellowship for Aspiring Teachers of Color awarded to 32 Mount Saint Mary's students
  • Selected as a grant recipient of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program (NCIN)
  • Partnered with the City of Los Angeles to produce more research reports on the status of women and girls in Los Angeles
  • The only Catholic university primarily for women in the western United States

Mount Saint Mary's University, a Roman Catholic institution, was founded in 1925 by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. It is a private/non-profit university.

MSMU Campus Locations

The Chalon Campus is located in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, overlooks the J. Paul Getty Center, the Santa Monica Mountains, and the Pacific Ocean.

The Doheny Campus is located near downtown Los Angeles and USC, is situated on land once owned by the Doheny family and features many historic buildings.


Traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

The Traditional BSN is a program designed for students who have never attended college. Those who graduate are eligible to become registered nurses by taking the NCLEX-RN licensure exam as well as eligibility to become certified as a public health nurse.

Clinical hours for hands-on care are provided in collaboration with hospitals and agencies throughout Los Angeles County.

High School Students: After completing prerequisite courses at The Mount, as it is referred to by many, students can be considered for entrance into the Tradition Bachelor of Science in Nursing (TBSN) Program. Admission is based upon successful completion of required courses, cumulative grade point average, science and English curriculum grade point averages, score on the nursing entrance exam, essay, and demonstrated interest in the nursing profession.

Accelerated Baccalaureate Nursing (AccBSN)

The AccBSN program offers the BSN program to students already holding a Bachelor's Degree in a field other than nursing.  The Accelerated Baccalaureate Nursing (AccBSN) Program is the same curriculum design as the Baccalaureate Nursing Program (BSN), follows the stated philosophy as well as meeting terminal objectives as delineated for the Baccalaureate program. The program is completed within one year (May to May) with an intense course study plan. The Accelerated student completes a three semester course of study, beginning with the first Summer session, followed by a Fall semester, and ending with a final Spring semester. At the completion of the final semester, graduates are eligible to take the Registered Nurse licensure examination (NCLEX-RN) and to qualify for the California Public Health Nursing Certificate.


Licensure Requirement

Applicants must have completed a Registered Nurse program and be licensed to practice in the state of California.

Length of program

The number of awarded transferable units and successful completion of all course work determine this. All courses are to be completed within five years of admission.

Transfer Credit for General Studies and Prerequisite Courses

Credit for courses taken in other accredited colleges or universities may be transferable provided that the transferred courses satisfy requirements at MSMU.

Credit for Nursing Courses

Students licensed as Registered Nurses in the state of California can receive credit for junior courses equivalent to MSMU lower division nursing courses.  Up to 21 units of upper division credit can be awarded for courses.


Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

Specialty Tracks

Clinical Nurse Specialist

In order to meet the eligibility qualifications to sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center's (ANCC) Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult-Gerontology certification examination, the MSN and post-MSN Adult-Gerontology CNS students must complete 500 faculty supervised clinical hours in the advanced practice role of the Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist.

Nurse Educator

The Master of Science Degree in Nursing with a concentration in Education will provide the graduate with competencies in advanced nursing theory and experience as a nursing educator to help educate upcoming nurses in theory and clinical settings.

The Educator specialty program is a 38 unit program that can be completed in 2 years with a Fall start date.

Leadership and Administration

The Master of Science Degree in Nursing with a concentration in Leadership and Administration is designed for those who wish to lead various organizations and institutions.

This specialty program can be completed in 2 years with a Fall start date.

Post-MSN Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate (Adult-Gerontology)

To be eligible for this program, applicants must have completed a Master of Science Degree in Nursing or related to nursing.

The Post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate program can also be completed in 24 months with a Fall start date.

Admission Requirements (not all inclusive)

  • BSN
  • Post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist track must have Master's degree
  • Current/unencumbered California RN license
  • Leadership/Administration track completed minimum of (1) year full-time continuous employment as an RN within the last five (5) years
  • Educator track must be able to meet minimum qualifications to be approved as a Clinical Teaching Assistant per California Board of Registered Nursing regulations
  • Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist and post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist certificate completed a minimum of one (1) year full-time continuous clinical experience in a setting caring for adults as an RN within the last five (5) years
  • GPA 3.0 in the last 60 semester units or the last 90 quarter units of coursework
  • Statistics - minimum grade of 'B' or research as a prerequisite to NUR 290 (not applicable to post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist track)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Current American Heart Association Basic Life Support (BLS) Healthcare Provider
  • Current malpractice insurance

Frequently Asked Questions

When do you offer classes at MSMU?  Are any classes provided online?

Courses are offered in the evening during the week and weekend. Entirely online degrees are not available.

Do I need to find my preceptor for the practicum?

Most students secure their own preceptor, however the MSN program will be able to provide assistance. The student may be placed in areas out of Los Angeles County and/or out of the student's county residence.

2018 NCLEX Pass Rates

  • ADN – 63.54%
  • BSN – 81.56%


US News & World Report (2019)

  • #18 in Regional Universities West
  • #33 in Best Value Schools

NICHE (2019)

  • Best Women's Colleges in America #19 of 29
  • Best Catholic Colleges in America #87 of 165
  • Most Liberal Colleges in America #124 of 687
  • Best Colleges for Nursing in America #185 of 599
  • Best Value Colleges in America #201 of 1,590
  • Best College Locations in America #244 of 1,553
  • Best Small Colleges in America #325 of 997
  • Best College Campuses in America #394 of 1,408
  • Top Private Universities in America #428 of 975
  • Best College Dorms in America #430 of 1,370
  • Best Colleges in America #700 of 1,647
  • Colleges with the Best Student Life in America #717 of 1,542
  • Best Catholic Colleges in California #6 of 8
  • Best Colleges for Nursing in California #12 of 37
  • Best Value Colleges in California #18 of 104
  • Most Liberal Colleges in California #21 of 61
  • Best College Locations in California #26 of 100
  • Best Small Colleges in California #26 of 56
  • Best College Campuses in California #30 of 82
  • Best College Dorms in California #31 of 72
  • Top Private Universities in California #39 of 70
  • Best Colleges in California #57 of 116
  • Most Diverse Colleges in California #98 of 109
  • Best Value Colleges in Los Angeles Area #9 of 50
  • Best Colleges in Los Angeles Area #33 of 59

Forbes (2019)

  • #559 Top Colleges
  • #357 in Private Colleges
  • #105 in the West

College Factual (2018-2019)

  • #16 Best Colleges for the Money in Maryland
  • #768 Best Colleges for the Money nationally

Accreditation and Approval

The Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges has accredited MSMU.

The Master of Science in Nursing and BSN programs at Mount Saint Mary's University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Mount Saint Mary's University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

The BSN program is approved by the California Board of Registered Nurses.

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