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Nursing Major Guide for 2008-2009

What is Nursing

Nursing is one of the few professions in which the career opportunities are outnumbered only by the personal rewards. It combines the challenges of fast-paced technology and science with the sense of personal fulfillment that comes from caring for others.

Every day, nurses use their skill and knowledge to care for people. They are present at the most critical times in a person’s life—at birth and death, in times of happiness and grief. They also help patients through the everyday struggle of staying healthy. Nurses use all of the scientific technology that is available to modern practitioners, but they also use their hands and their hearts to touch the lives of their patients.

Nursing is a career with a positive future—open to both men and women. It is a career in which you can touch the lives of thousands of people every year.

Career Opportunities in Nursing

The demand for nurses is already great and is expected to continue to increase for the foreseeable future. Good jobs and good salaries are almost guaranteed.

Few careers offer as much flexibility and diversity as nursing. Nurses choose from a variety of positions in any part of the world—practicing in hospitals, outpatient clinics, schools, research centers, industrial and corporate wellness centers, nursing homes, hospices, and private homes. Because patients need care 24 hours a day, seven days a week, nurses can find full- or part-time positions with hours to fit their personal needs.

But job security and good salaries are not the only reasons to become a nurse. Nurses are healers, caregivers, counselors, teachers, and friends who serve other people. The satisfaction of knowing that you made a difference in another person’s life is the greatest reward in nursing.

Salary Trends in Nursing

Beginning nurses are being offered salaries as high as $37,000 to $45,000, depending on the section of the country. Areas of high demand may lead employers to offer other benefits such as sign-on bonuses. Nurses with advanced degrees obviously make more.

High School Preparation

UT undergraduate admissions requirements are basic. High school chemistry and biology are very beneficial. Acceptance to upper-division nursing is mostly dependent on what the student does in the first two years of college.

How to Major in Nursing

Students who want a career in nursing should declare nursing as their major and receive their academic advising in the College of Nursing. The prescribed nursing curriculum for lower division should be followed carefully in order to avoid delay in completing requirements.

Requirements for Nursing

In order to obtain a BSN degree, students are required to successfully complete eight semesters of full-time study, or the equivalent in part-time study, for a total of 124 semester hours. The program is designed to accommodate high school graduates, transfer students and registered nurses who hold associate degrees in nursing or who are graduates of diploma nursing programs.

Special Programs, Co-ops, and Internships

The undergraduate program combines the unique resources of the UT campus with those of the University of Tennessee Medical Center and many other health care agencies.

Highlights of Nursing

Students accepted to upper-division nursing have clinical experience in at least two of their courses each semester of the junior and senior years. Clinical courses include an emphasis on health promotion, health maintenance and restoration, and a strong family and community orientation. Graduates of the program are prepared to

  • assume beginning leadership positions in nursing in a variety of settings;
  • work collaboratively with other health professionals;
  • function as socially conscious and contributing citizens; and
  • pursue advanced education on either a formal or informal basis.

Ready for the World logoReady for the World

Interested students are encouraged to consider a study abroad experience during their first two years.  An international medical service trip is available to the juniors and seniors each spring.  The group, which includes 12 CON students and faculty, area nurses, physicians and dentists, provides health care to citizens of remote and underserved areas.  These intense clinical experiences provide students with the opportunity to immerse themselves into new cultures while developing and sharpening their clinical skills.  The international experience includes providing primary health care to underserved populations, introduction to tropical medicine, and assessing community health needs and providing health care education.

Learn more about UT's Ready for the World initiative to help students gain the international and intercultural knowledge they need to succeed in today's world.

Sample Curriculum

Freshman Year Credit Hours
English Composition I, II 6
Chemistry I, II 8
Biology 4
Basic Calculus 3
Statistics 201 3
General Psychology 3
Sociology or Anthropology 3
Arts & Humanities 3
Sophomore Year Credit Hours
Human Anatomy 4
Human Physiology 5
General Microbiology 3
Nutrition 3
Human Development 3
Bioethics 3
Introduction to Nursing 2
Cultures & Civilizations 6
Arts & Humanities 3
Junior Year Credit Hours
Health Assessment 3
Foundations of Professional
Nursing Practice
Pathophysiology of Health Deviations 4
Transcultural Nursing 2
Health Promotion and Maintenance
in Community
Health Maintenance & Restoration: Adult 5
Pharmacology I 2
Professional Development 2
Senior Year Credit Hours
Nursing Research 3
Health Promotion and Maintenance in
Childbearing Families
Interpersonal Management Skills 2
Professional & Workplace Issues 1
Health Maintenance and Restoration
in Mental Health
Pharmacology II 2
Health Promotion, Maintenance & Restoration in Children, Adolescents & their Families 5
Health Restoration: Adult 4
Specialty Preceptorship 4

For More Information

Beth Barret
Director of Student Services
College of Nursing, Room 203
1200 Volunteer Boulevard
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-4180 (865) 974-7606




The information on this page should be considered general information only. For more specific information on this and other programs refer to the UT catalog or contact the department and/or college directly.