Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program

Diane Neu
Program Chair, Associate Degree Nursing
Gainesville Campus room 2428
(940) 668-7731

The Associate Degree Nursing Program at North Central Texas College at the Gainesville campus located in Gainesville, Texas is accredited by ACEN.

3390 Peachtree Rd NE Suite 1400
Atlanta, GA 30326
(404) 975-5000

The most recent accreditation decision made by the ACEN Board of Commissioners for the Associate Degree Nursing Program is Continuing Accreditation.

Programmatic Outcomes

Upon completion of an Associate Degree in Nursing, a student should be able to:

Act as a Member of the Profession

  • Function within the nurse’s legal scope of practice and in accordance with the policies and procedures of the employing health care institution or practice setting.
  • Assume responsibility and accountability for the quality of nursing care provided to patients and their families.
  • Participate in activities that promote the development and practice of professional nursing.
  • Demonstrate responsibility for continued competence in nursing practice, and develop insight through reflection, self-analysis, self-care, and lifelong learning.

Become a Provider of Patient-Centered Care.

  • Use clinical reasoning and knowledge based on the diploma or associate degree nursing program of study and evidence-based practice outcomes as a basis for decision-making in nursing practice.
  • Determine the physical and mental health status, needs, and preferences of culturally, ethnically, and socially diverse patients and their families based upon interpretation of comprehensive health assessment findings compared with evidence-based health data derived from the diploma or associate degree nursing program of study.
  • Analyze assessment data to identify problems, formulate goals/outcomes, and develop plans of care for patients and their families using information from evidence-based practice in collaboration with patients, their families, and the interdisciplinary health care team.
  • Provide safe, compassionate, comprehensive nursing care to patients and their families through a broad array of health care services.
  • Implement the plan of care for patients and their families within legal, ethical, and regulatory parameters and in consideration of disease prevention, wellness, and promotion of healthy lifestyles.
  • Evaluate and report patient outcomes and responses to therapeutic interventions in comparison to benchmarks from evidence-based practice and plan follow-up nursing care.
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate teaching plans for patients and their families to address health promotion, maintenance, and restoration.
  • Coordinate human, information, and material resources in providing care for patients and their families.

Serve as a Patient Safety Advocate

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the Texas Nursing Practice Act and the Texas Board of Nursing Rules that emphasize safety, as well as all federal, state, and local government and accreditation organization safety requirements and standards.
  • Implement measures to promote quality and a safe environment for patients, self, and others.
  • Formulate goals and outcomes using evidence-based data to reduce patient risks.
  • Obtain instruction, supervision, or training as needed when implementing nursing procedures or practices.
  • Comply with mandatory reporting requirements of the Texas Nursing Practice Act.
  • Accept and make assignments and delegate tasks that take into consideration patient safety and organizational policy.

Become a Member of the Health Care Team

  • Coordinate, collaborate, and communicate with patients, their families, and the interdisciplinary health care team to plan, deliver, and evaluate patient-centered care.
  • Serve as a health care advocate in monitoring and promoting quality and access to health care for patients and their families.
  • Refer patients and their families to resources that facilitate continuity of care, health promotion, maintenance, and restoration and ensure confidentiality and communicate and collaborate in a timely manner with members of the interdisciplinary health care team to promote and maintain optimal health status of patients and their families.
  • Communicate and manage information using technology to support decision-making to improve patient care.
  • Assign and/or delegate nursing care to other members of the health care team based upon an analysis of patient or unit need.
  • Supervise nursing care provided by others for whom the nurse is responsible by using evidence-based nursing practice.


To be officially admitted to the Associate Degree in Nursing program at NCTC students must meet qualification requirements beyond college standards and carefully follow the step-by-step process outlined below.

Attending an Associate Degree in Nursing program information session is recommended, but not mandatory. Times and locations for the information sessions are posted and updated on the Information Session link of the nursing program website. Applying for the next class has additional detailed information regarding testing including a checklist of things needed before submitting an application to the program.

Step One

A student may apply for Admission to NCTC through ApplyTexas. Complete the college admission process as outlined on the NCTC website (AdmssionHowtoApply).

An applicant should submit official transcripts from every college attended by sending them to the Admissions Office. To complete the process, an applicant should submit a Transcript Evaluation form to the NCTC Admissions Office. This must be done early enough so that a degree audit can be completed by the Admissions Office before submitting an application to the nursing program.

Step Two

Once all admission requirements are met, an applicant will be notified by the Admissions Office of acceptance to NCTC. At this point, an applicant may begin the process of registering for the pre-requisite and general academic (non-nursing) courses as needed. Once general academic and pre-requisite classes are complete the applicant may begin the process of registering for the nursing entrance exam.

Step Three

After an applicant has completed steps one and two, an applicant should apply for admission to the Associate Degree in Nursing Program. Associate Degree Nursing Applications should be submitted online to the myNCTC page. Copies of transcripts from all colleges other than NCTC and a copy of a degree audit must be provided at the time of submission. Applications may be completed between:

  • March 1–31 for Fall Semester admission
  • August 1–31 for Spring Semester admission
  • Transition LVN to RN—February 1-28 for Summer admission

If an applicant is not admitted to the Associate Degree in Nursing Program after submitting an application, they must submit a new application during the next application period in order to be considered for admission in subsequent semesters. 

Step Four

An applicant's transcript will be evaluated to determine eligibility for the Associate Degree in Nursing Program. Refer to the Points requirement.

Applicants will be ranked according to application points and scores on the TEAS Entrance Exam:

  • Application points will be given for the prerequisite courses including Anatomy & Physiology I, Anatomy & Physiology II.
  • Points may be deducted for any prerequisite course that was repeated.
  • The TEAS Entrance Exam consists of four areas: Reading, Math, Writing, and Science. Applicants will be given points based on their scores.

Step Five

Candidates with the highest application points will be considered for admission to the Associate Degree Nursing Program. Applicants may not take the entrance exam more than twice during an academic year (August through July). Applicants accepted into the program will be registered in nursing courses by the nursing program. Students do not enroll themselves in nursing courses.

Any applicant wishing to re-apply for the following semester must go through the admission process again in order to be considered.

Step Six

Those students selected for admission will be sent details on the following items:

  • Physical Examination form signed by a physician.
  • Proof of major medical insurance coverage or accident insurance coverage.
  • Malpractice insurance. This is added to the tuition/fees bill at the time of registration. Malpractice insurance must be renewed each fall semester.
  • A Urine Drug Screen will be required of all students. The nursing office will arrange this.
  • Proof of current CPR certification (American Heart Association - Basic Life Support).
  • Meet the required Immunizations.

Students must complete a total of 60 semester credit hours--36 in Nursing courses and 24 in pre-requisites and required support courses in order to complete the degree requirements for an Associate Degree in Nursing. The Associate Degree in Nursing program is designed to be completed in four long semesters.

Students in the Transition program may complete fewer hours--a total of 52 hours--to provide credit for LVN licensure. The LVN to RN Transition Program is 12 months.

Program Progression

Nursing courses are grouped in progressive levels of complexity, and students must successfully complete all course work in one level before progressing to the next.

In order to succeed in the Associate Degree in Nursing Program students must:

  • Make a grade of “C” or higher in all required courses.
  • Adhere to the program’s course of study– including completion of support courses.
  • Maintain current CPR certification and immunization status.
  • Successfully complete the Clinical Math Exams each semester. Failure to meet math requirements will result in a clinical failure and dismissal from the nursing program.

Students will not be allowed to continue in the Associate Degree in Nursing program without satisfying these criteria. However, when deficiencies are corrected, the student may petition to be readmitted to the appropriate courses. Students will be allowed to continue only with the approval of the ADN Program Admission, Progression, and Advisement (APA) Committee. Students are allowed one readmission to the nursing program.


Transfer is considered on a space-available basis. Applicants must meet all requirements of the nursing program in addition to those of North Central Texas College.

  • All college credits from other institutions will be evaluated on an individual basis to determine their possible application to the nursing curriculum requirements.
  • A letter grade of "C" or better is required for transfer for all previous nursing courses and academic support courses.
  • Previous nursing courses must be from a regionally accredited program of nursing. A transfer will not be considered if the student has missed a full semester of enrollment in a nursing program.
  • Students who have not been academically successful in other nursing programs will not be considered for transfer.
  • The student must submit:
    • A letter stating the reason for transfer,
    • Course descriptions and/or course syllabi for previous nursing courses,
    • Resume of previous clinical experience to include documentation of skills provided by the faculty of the transferring school, and
    • Letter of recommendation from the Department Head of the school from which the applicant is transferring.
  • Students will be evaluated on an individual basis by the Division Chair to determine their level of entry.

Grading Policy

Course grades (non-clinical performance) are based on a numerical average with corresponding letter grades. A grade of “C” or higher is required in all courses in the Associate Degree in Nursing curriculum. Grades will not be rounded.

  • 90-100 = A
  • 81-89 = B
  • 75-80 = C
  • 66-74 = D
  • 65 or lower = F

About Clinicals

Clinical courses require students to travel to sites off the college campus. Clinical sites include--but are not limited to--hospitals and other health care facilities in Gainesville, Muenster, Sherman, Denton, Decatur, Corinth, Flower Mound, Ardmore, Nocona, Wichita Falls, Argyle, and Lewisville. Students must be prepared to drive to any of these locations for clinicals.

Students not successful in completing any course in their first semester are required to reapply to the program and start the process from the beginning. Refer to the NCTC Associate Degree Nursing Student Handbook for more detailed information about this procedure.

Summary of Costs for ADN Students 

The sum and total cost per-semester for the Associate Degree in Nursing Program at North Central Texas College is listed below.

  • Tuition
  • “Combined” student fees (such as malpractice insurance and testing fees)
  • Textbooks
  • Supplies and incidentals
  • Nursing kits

Supplies & Incidentals

Students admitted to the ADN program are required to buy the following items.

  • Uniforms – specific scrubs for class and clinical
  • Patches
  • Lab coat
  • Nursing shoes
  • Stethoscope
  • Skills kit
  • Wristwatch with a second hand
  • Students will need normal school supplies
  • Access to instructional technologies

Other costs are listed below.

  • Major Medical Insurance
  • Physical examination and immunizations
  • CPR training
  • ATI fees
  • Jurisprudence Exam fees
  • Graduation fees
  • State Board of Nursing fees
  • NCLEX-RN testing fees

ADN students must have access to a computer with internet access.

Credit Hours

  • A 1:1 ratio is used for lecture hours – 1 lecture hour is equivalent to one credit.
  • A 2:1 ratio is used to determine lab hours to credit hours – 2 lab hours are equivalent to 1 credit.
  • A 3:1 ratio is used to determine clinical hours – 3 clinical hours are equivalent to 1 credit.

See catalog course descriptions for the number of hours, lecture, laboratory, and clinical hours required for each course.


Graduates may apply to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), which is administered by the Texas Board of Nursing. Graduates become RNs once the NCLEX-RN is passed.

Graduates must pass the state-mandated jurisprudence exam with a minimum grade of 75 before applying for the NCLEX-RN.

NCTC Associate Degree in Nursing graduates are encouraged to continue nursing education toward a bachelor's degree or higher. Associate Degree in Nursing students completing requirements for their Associate of Applied Science Degree are highly encouraged, as are all graduates, to participate in the college’s formal commencement ceremonies. 

Eligibility for Licensure

It is important to understand the licensing process of the Texas Board of Nursing (BON) in order to minimize potential problems nursing graduates might experience in obtaining a nursing license. Schools of nursing do not have the authority to grant licensure for LVNs or RNs. The nursing program is granted permission from the BON to educate and train individuals to apply to take the licensing exams. Individual graduates must apply to the Texas Board of Nursing to take the licensing exam.

Nursing students enrolled or planning to enroll in a nursing program who have reason to believe that they might be ineligible for licensure must provide the BON with information and they will determine eligibility for licensure. The BON will ask candidates the following.

Answers to issues related to eligibility are available on the Board of Nursing website under FAQs for new students.

Board of Nursing FAQ

Specific question related to licensure of individuals with Criminal History is Rule 213.28

Common eligibility issues that may need to be addressed by the BON include answering yes to any criminal offense, including those pending appeal. The BON will ask the following questions.

Have you:

  • Been convicted of a misdemeanor?
  • Been convicted of a felony?
  • Pled no contender, no contest, or guilty?
  • Received deferred adjudication?
  • Been placed on community supervision or court-ordered probation, whether or not adjudicated guilty?
  • Been sentenced to serve jail or prison time or court-ordered confinement?
  • Been granted pre-trial diversion?
  • Been arrested or have any pending criminal charges?
  • Been cited or charged with any violation of the law?
  • Been subject of a court-martial; Article 15 violation; or received any form of military judgment, punishment, or action? 

Results of the DPS/FBI Background check and fingerprint scan may prohibit final admission to the program until the Declaratory Order is received by the student from the BON. The student must inform the Division Chair of the outcome of the petition for Declaratory Order by providing a copy of the clearance letter received from the BON, the Declaratory Order with or without conditions received from the BON, or the letter of denial received by the BON. 

Essential Physical Competencies for Nursing

In response to the Americans with Disabilities Act, a national survey of administrators of health care facilities, which employ nurses, validated a list of essential competencies a nurse must possess in order to function safely and effectively in a variety of clinical settings.

Results indicate that relatively high numbers of activities were identified in each essential competency category by the health care agencies as being necessary for nursing practice.

These competencies include:

  • extended walking and standing daily,
  • ability to grasp, push, and/or pull,
  • ability to bend and stoop,
  • moving quickly in response to an emergency using upper body movements,
  • ability to reach,
  • carrying and moving equipment, and
  • reaching and/or lifting. 

Other essential competencies identified for nursing care include:

  • vision acuity to allow detecting physical changes such as cyanosis; ability to discriminate small print,
  • hearing that allows responding to physical and verbal cues,
  • a sense of touch that allows for assessment and palpation,
  • manual dexterity that allows for skill performance,
  • communicate effectively and efficiently in English in both oral and written forms,
  • cognitive ability to exercise good judgment, and
  • attention to detail and ability to complete tasks within required time limits.

Adaptations most frequently reported as being used by nursing staff were hearing aids, adaptive phones, and calculators.

The ADN Program has accepted these competencies as expectations for success in the program. Applicants may be asked to complete a Functional Abilities Performance upon conditional acceptance into the program.

BSN Pathway

The Associate Degree in Nursing program at NCTC partners with major universities to offer students the opportunity for a smoother transition from Associate Degree in Nursing to Bachelor of Science in Nursing through the Consortium for the Advancement of Baccalaureate Nursing Education in Texas (CABNET) agreement. Since the BSN Pathway curriculum has been standardized, students that graduate with an Associate Degree in Nursing from NCTC, pass the NCLEX-RN, and complete all BSN prerequisite courses will be able to complete the BSN program with 30 hours of online courses at one of our partner universities.

NCTC has partnered with the following universities listed below.

  • Midwestern State University 
  • Texas Tech University
  • Western Governor's University
  • Southwest Kingston University
  • Texas Woman's University