Nursing Prerequisites at Xavier University ABSN

Hands typing on computer and taking notes with pen

Every university requires a similar set of prerequisites for nursing school. Here at Xavier, our 16-month ABSN program has four prerequisite course requirements, which is a huge advantage for second-degree students eager to transition into nursing. And while we only have four ABSN prerequisites, these courses are challenging and critical to nursing career preparedness.

Nursing is a profession that requires a strong understanding of science and math.

 That’s exactly why we have four targeted ABSN program prerequisites:

  • Microbiology
  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Statistics

These courses are a great way to gauge how well you’ll do in nursing school. For the most part, students who ace these prerequisites tend to be the most successful in our ABSN program. Let’s take a closer look at how each of these areas inform the practice of nursing and set you up for success in the Xavier ABSN program.

How prerequisite courses give you an edge

Nursing prerequisites offer much more than checking a box on your list of ABSN requirements. These four courses curated by Xavier University provide you with vital tools and information that will not only aid you in your nursing education but also help you in your career.

We want to help make you ready to tackle anything you come across in your nursing courses and be sure you embark on your ABSN education feeling confident—and that’s what nursing prerequisites are all about.

Prerequisites prepare you to immerse yourself into your nursing program with a strong understanding of foundational concepts, allowing you to put your best foot forward. Here are some other benefits of prerequisite courses that you may not have considered:

  • If you’ve been out of school for a bit, or need some time to adjust to using a new platform, the prerequisite courses you’ll take allow you to get a feel for online modules and hybrid learning, allowing you to enter your nursing courses confidently.
  • These courses will also help acclimate you to a schedule of submitting assignments and meeting deadlines—you’ll learn what to expect from your nursing workload and how to manage it.
  • These prerequisite courses will focus your analyzing, critical-thinking and multi-step processing skills, setting you up for success as a well-rounded nurse.
  • All of these courses prepare you for your nursing education, and each one has advantages you’ll find handy later in the program.

The importance of microbiology in nursing

An important branch of science, microbiology is the study of microbes and how these tiny, living things have an influence on our daily lives. Through microbiology, we can track the positive and negative outcomes of a microbe’s work.

Nurses need to have a deep understanding of microbiology because they use their knowledge of microbes in a variety of ways, from the proper disposal of biomedical waste to the examination of smears for bacterial contamination. Nurses also use microbiology to see how a patient responds to treatment.

After taking microbiology, you’ll never look at organisms the same way again. Here’s some of what you’ll learn during this ABSN prerequisite course:

  • The range and classifications of microorganisms.
  • The reproduction of important pathogens.
  • The role of bacterial pathogenesis.
  • The role of acquired and innate immune systems.
  • The chain of infection.

A key lesson you’ll study in microbiology is how viruses work. In today’s climate of COVID-19, this is especially vital. You’ll spend time learning about how to properly reduce the spread of the virus and best practices for treating the ailment.

A solid understanding of microbiology can also support knowing the best procedures in the medical field such as: keeping things sterile, collecting swabs, and providing quality care.

The importance of anatomy and physiology in nursing

While anatomy is the study of the structures associated with the human body, physiology is the study of how these structures function. Exploring the human body in its balanced state, anatomy and physiology are the cornerstones for nearly every health care profession. With an understanding of how the healthy body works, we can identify and treat disease.

Responsible for bringing the human body back to its balanced state, nurses rely on anatomy and physiology to determine the best course of action when caring for a specific patient.

After taking anatomy and physiology, you’ll come to see the human body as a complex machine. Here’s some of what you’ll learn during this ABSN prerequisite course:

  • The role and location of each organ and cavity in the body.
  • The interconnectedness of organ systems in the body.
  • The anatomical function and location of cells in the body.

In this course, you’ll become well-acquainted with the integumentary system, reproductive system, skeletal system, cardiovascular system, and lymphatic system. By understanding the complexities of how all systems within the human body work together to function properly, you’ll be well-suited to be able to identify when they aren’t functioning correctly and how that affects your patient.

The importance of statistics in nursing

Statistics is the science of learning from data, which includes finding ways to organize, summarize, and describe quantifiable data as well as create methods for drawing conclusions and generalizing upon them.

An understanding of statistics is a competence every health care worker should have because it makes it possible to read and evaluate reports and other literature critically and intelligently. Statistical knowledge is also important for carrying out studies that involve the collection, processing, and analysis of data. For example, through statistics, we can gauge the disparities in health conditions among members of a population.

When it comes to nursing, RNs use statistics on a routine basis, from studying the patterns of disease in patients to determining the time interval for when a patient should take prescribed medicine. Nurses also use statistics to calculate the average number of patient examinations per day, week, month or year, which allows them to predict when health consultation is at its peak.

After taking statistics, you’ll see new value in numbers. Here’s some of what you’ll learn during this ABSN prerequisite course:

  • The standard rates, ratios and proportions used to define health status.
  • The statistical and visual methods for summarizing data.
  • The basic principles of probability, regression, and hypothesis testing.

Nurses especially benefit from a statistics course because it empowers them to process data to determine when medications should be administered to patients.  A background in statistics also comes into play when evaluating studies that examine the efficacy of treatments and intervention methods.

If you’re interested in policy change, improving procedures, and understanding the ever-changing health care field, an understanding of statistics will be vital.

Taking Nursing Prerequisites for Xavier’s ABSN Program

To qualify for our accelerated nursing program, you must have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree in addition to earning a grade of B or better in each science prerequisite course, C or better in statistics and maintaining an overall cumulative GPA of 2.7.

Keep in mind that if you’ve already completed one or more of these prerequisite courses, you must have done so within eight years of entering the program and having earned the appropriate required grades. It’s worth talking to one of our admission counselors to make sure your past college credits are eligible for transfer.

When you’re ready to dive into your prerequisites for nursing school, we make it convenient for you to do so by offering these courses online through our university. By choosing Xavier to complete your prerequisites, you just might qualify for provisional admission into the ABSN program.

If you prefer to complete your prerequisites at another school, be sure to have your admission counselor vet the courses to make sure they satisfy our requirements.

Contact our admissions team to put your nursing school prerequisite plan in place or to learn more about our 16-month ABSN program in Ohio.

Xavier ABSN simulation lab

ABSN 101 Guide

Download our ABSN 101 Guide to help you successfully navigate the accelerated path to nursing.