General Information

Approved and Accredited

New Mexico State University Alamogordo is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.  The latest accreditation visit to the campus by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association was in March 2013. Higher Learning Commission of The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools may be contacted at 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, Illinois 60604, 800.621.7440.

The New Mexico State University Alamogordo’s Nursing program is approved by New Mexico Board of Nursing (NMBON), 6301 Indian School Road, NE, Suite 710, Albuquerque, NM, 87110, 505.841.8340.

The NMBON granted New Mexico State University Alamogordo a Certificate of Conditional Approval for two years until August 2014.

The New Mexico State University Alamogordo Nursing Program is nationally accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), 3343 Peachtree Road, NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, GA 30326, (404-975-5000), The ACEN may be contacted for information regarding the accreditation status of the New Mexico State University Alamogordo Nursing Program.

The New Mexico State University Alamogordo Nursing Program is accredited with warning status by ACEN through October 2014.

The ACEN is the accrediting agency for nursing programs and has been since 1997.  The ACEN assures prospective students and employers that the NMSU-A Nursing Program has met national education standards.  Graduation from an ACEN accredited nursing program can facilitate a student’s acceptance into advanced educational and certification programs, graduate schools, and the Armed Forces.


The current NMSU-A Schedule of Classes provides the student with a complete list of Nursing classes offered each semester (Nursing – NURS and Nursing Assistant – NA)

The Nursing Program utilizes traditional, hybrid, and on-line instructional methodology.  All Nursing classes utilize the NMSU Learning Management system – CANVAS.  Currently NURS 282 and NURS 284 are the only hybrid classes in the Nursing Program.

The current NMSU-A Course Catalog provides the student with a description of courses/classes offered.


Full-time tuition for New Mexico residents, in-district, is approximately $948 per semester for 12-18 credits; New Mexico residents, out-of-district, is approximately $1,128 per semester for 12-18 credits. Non-resident tuition is approximately $2,544 per semester, full-time. There are fees associated with Nursing courses; refer to the current Schedule of Classes for the fee schedule.  Tuition and fees are subject to change.

For information on loans, grants, and scholarships, see the NMSU-A Financial Aid page.

Selection for Admission

To be accepted into the Nursing Program, the student’s application and packet (transcripts) goes through a selection process.  The selection process is objectively defined by a point system.  The points are a tallied score of a computerized worksheet that assigns points for prerequisites and co-requisite courses.  The tallied points generate the total selection points and the Nursing GPA score.  The pre-admission assessment exam score is identified on the computerized worksheet, as well as the overall transcript GPA. Applicants are ranked by their total scores –highest to lowest.  If there is a tie in scores, the committee will consider the student’s GPA scores, Nursing electives, and related BSN courses as tiebreakers.

The Nursing Program is a limited entry program with open selection two times per year, Fall and Spring Semesters.  Students may submit their application at any time, on or before the deadline dates for the semester they anticipate entering into the Nursing Program. The application deadline dates are December 1st for Spring Selection and  May 1st for the Fall Selection. Typically, selection for a new class cohort is finalized by the second week of May and December.  Applications from active duty Military, their spouses, and dependents may be accepted anytime at the discretion of the Nursing Director.

Selection is open to students who have completed the general requirements and prerequisites for admission into the Nursing Program.  Admission is also open to students transferring from another accredited college/university nursing program, as well as LVN/LPN’s pursuing a transition to become an Register Nurse (RN).

All applicants are required to take and pass a pre-admission assessment exam. Commencing August 2012, NLN-PAX RN will replace the HESI Admission Assessment exam. The exam is a multiple choice assessment of basic academic knowledge in verbal ability, math, and science. The verbal section assesses word knowledge, reading comprehension, and critical thinking; the math section assesses ability to solve mathematical problems involving integers, conversions, fractions, decimals, algebra, and geometry; the science section assesses knowledge in areas of general biology, human anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and physics.  The objective of the pre-admission exam is to assess those areas which nurse educators deem most appropriate and relevant to measure entry level skills and abilities of Nursing Program applicants.  The applicant is required to achieve at least the 50th percentile on all areas tested and the benchmark composite score of 120 or above.

Students who do not achieve at least the 50th percentile on all areas tested and the benchmark composite score of 120 or above, will be required to complete additional preparation in the NLN Review Guide for RN Pre Entrance Exam and/or PAX-RN Practice Tests on

After additional preparation, the student is able to retake the pre-admission exam for the second time, at four (4) months after the original exam date.  If the student fails on their second attempt, the student will have to do further preparation to take the exam eight (8) months from the original date for their final attempt to pass the exam.  An applicant’s exam results are valid for one (1) year from the test date.

Advance Placements (transfer students) are required to provide results from a prior pre-admission assessment exam or take the NLN-PAX RN exam. Effective August 2012, LVN/LPN’s are required to take the LPN-Step Proctored Assessment exam through ATI.

Both the NLN-PAX RN pre-admission assessment exam and LPN-Step Proctored Assessment exam will be offered three (3) times a year (February, June, and October) and will usually be scheduled the first Friday of the month, but subject to change with minimal notice.

  • First: the student will need to contact the Nursing Office to be placed on the testing roster for computer space.
  • Second: the student will need to register and pay for the exam at .  The student will need to register and set up an account.  Click on Create Account button to create an account.  After the student has created an account, click on the Registration Store button to register for the exam.  Make sure to register for the correct exam RN Pre-Admission Exam.  Please read through the exam policies on this site.  The NLN does not issue refunds for this exam.  Accepted payment is made by major credit card such as VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express.
  • Third: one week before the exam the student will bring a copy of the “Exam Confirmation” to the Nursing Program Office and a copy of their photo ID.
  • Fourth: the student will arrive promptly at 1:00pm to allow for pretest instructions and registration information.  Students cannot be admitted after the session starts at 1:30pm.  The exam ends at 4:30pm.

Student requirements during the pre-admission exam:

  • This is a national standardized exam. All students taking the exam are proctored at all times while the test is open and active (including viewing of rationales).
  • No Cell phones, PDAs and other electronic and photographic devices are allowed at the workstation.  Access to any electronic devices of any kind is not allowed while the computerized test session is still open and active. If a student takes a break they are not to use any electronic devices while the test is open and active.  If a student uses any electronic devices while the test is open and active, then the exam is terminated and the student will be required to leave.
  • No food, drink, or gum is allowed at the workstation.  The student may have food and drink during the bathroom break outside the test area
  • Students needing a bathroom break: only one student at a time will be allowed out of the test site and will be accompanied by one of the proctors to the restroom.
  • The proctor has the authority to:
    • Remove any student who displays distressful or disruptive behaviors to other test takers during the exam;
    • Terminate the exam if the testing procedure is compromised.

Health Requirements

Health screenings and examinations indicating the student’s ability to provide safe nursing care to the public is required.  All health requirements are the student’s financial responsibility. The student, who is initially admitted, readmitted, and/or progressing in the nursing program is required to submit the following documentation each year.

  • Current tuberculin test – Yearly (PPD) (if PPD is positive, the following must be addressed: documentation of a negative CXR and complete a screening questionnaire)
  • MMR – positive titer to all three diseases or series of two (2) immunizations dated 1983 or later, or proof of immunity from a health care provider.
  • Tetanus – every 10 years
  • Tdap -  Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis booster with in last 10 years
  • Hepatitis B – positive titer or series of three (3) immunizations
  • Varicella – positive titer or series of two (2) immunizations
  • Flu Vaccine – yearly
  • CPR – current BLS for Health Care Providers card (through enrollment in the nursing program)
  • Physical examination (optional)
  • Health insurance policy (optional)
  • Student Malpractice Insurance (optional) (Will be required in Fall 2013)
  • All requirements shall be submitted to the Nursing Program Office for the Fall Semester by August 1st and for the Spring Semester by December 1st.

Background Checks

The Nursing Program is required to submit a Criminal History Investigation Screening on each nursing student, DOH Regulation 7.1.9  (

The NMSU-A Nursing Program offers the student the opportunity to have their fingerprints cards completed on campus.   The Nursing Office then submits the following: (1) Authorization for Release of Information form; (2) copy of student’s driver license; and (3) three complete fingerprint cards sent to the New Mexico Department of Health, Criminal History Investigation Screening Program for processing.   Each student is required to submit the above information to the Nursing Office on or before August 1st for the Fall Semester and on or before December 1st for the Spring Semester.