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Frequently Asked Questions

What type of college is Denver College of Nursing?

Denver College of Nursing is a private institution of higher education dedicated exclusively to preparing students for the diverse opportunities offered by careers in nursing and other medical fields. For more information on the school's background, check out our Mission, Vision, Purpose, and Philosophy page.

What is a typical schedule like?

On-Campus Programs (ADN and BSN): On-campus classes may be scheduled between 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, and other times as necessary. Nursing clinical course hours may vary and can include nights, weekends, holidays, and the two-week break between semesters.  Clinical shifts are generally eight to 12 hours per day. Class schedules may change unexpectedly due to the requirements of clinical agencies.

Online Programs (RN to BSN and MSN): Online students have two courses scheduled per 11-week term, and program start dates are scheduled throughout the year. For the purpose of participation and attendance, the academic week begins on Monday at midnight Mountain Time and ends on Sunday at 11:59 p.m. Mountain Time.

Attendance is monitored through class participation, so online students are expected to participate in each of their scheduled classes throughout the week. A student participates in classes in the following ways:

  • Submitting a post to the discussion board
  • Posting a paper, project, or other academic assignment
  • Completing a quiz, exam, midterm, or final
  • Making an initial post to the weekly discussion by 11:59 p.m. MT Wednesday
  • Responding to the posts of two peers by 11:59 p.m. MT Friday
  • Posting any remaining weekly assignments as per instructions in the syllabus

How many students are in a class?

On-Campus Programs (ADN and BSN): At Denver College of Nursing, all on-campus programs include traditional didactic classes in a classroom, classes in a learning skills lab, and clinical classes at appropriate healthcare facilities. At DCN, you'll find that our class sizes are smaller than most universities. Classes are scheduled per starting cohort of students, who will take all didactic, lab, and clinical classes together for the length of their program. This allows students to form friendships, study groups, and groups that may carpool together. 

Online Programs (RN to BSN and MSN): Online class sizes in the RN to BSN and MSN programs are limited to 25 students, and most classes will have 20 students or less. Online programs do not include traditional lab or clinical experiences.

Can a DCN graduate with a Colorado nursing license work in another state?

Yes, though each state has different requirements for the transferring or endorsement of licenses. Please contact the board of nursing for the state you want to practice in to find out the specific requirements in that state. 

We have graduates who are currently employed as nurses in states including California, Texas, South Carolina, and New Mexico.

As of January 2018, Colorado is a participating state in the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC). When a new graduate residing in the state of Colorado obtains a nursing license, it’s granted as a multi-state license allowing practice in all the participating states. Please visit for more information. For information on licensure and nursing regulatory bodies in general, please visit

Is DCN authorized to operate distance education programs (online programs) in my state?

DCN is authorized to enroll students from the specific states listed in the admissions application for distance education programs. If your state is not listed in the DCN admissions application, the college is not yet authorized to enroll students residing there.  

The list of states where DCN is authorized to offer distance education programs is updated regularly. If you do not see your state listed by DCN at this time and have questions, please contact the Online Admissions Department.

What are DCN's NCLEX pass rates?

The historical NCLEX pass rates for DCN's programs are available on the Colorado State Board of Nursing’s website.

The 2023 pass rates for the DCN programs are:

  • BSN – 388 graduates, 92.813% 
  • ADN – 36 graduates, 100%

What are the prerequisite requirements for DCN programs?

All prerequisite requirements are listed on our program pages.

Do the prerequisite classes need to be completed before I turn in an application?

If students are in their final semester of prerequisite courses at another school and will have their prerequisites completed by the time they start the program, then they can turn in an application for the next available cohort. 

Is there an alternate list for classes at DCN?

You can typically start within three to six months of your application, as DCN provides many start dates throughout the year; however, if a cohort fills up, an alternate list will be created. Contact the Admissions Department at the campus where you’re enrolled or the Online Admissions Department to find out the status of the start date you’re interested in. 

Can I work while in school?

On-Campus Programs (ADN and BSN): We don’t recommend it. All of our nursing programs are considered full-time day programs, and many students find it very difficult to work full time while going to school. If students do work, it’s usually in a healthcare setting on a part-time basis. Students would need a very flexible employer because class and clinical schedules change every quarter.

Online Programs (RN to BSN and MSN): Yes, you may work while enrolled in an online program at DCN. Denver College of Nursing offers well-paced, fully online RN to BSN degree and MSN degree programs that are designed to meet the needs of the working RN.

Where do I go for my clinicals? How does this work in online programs?

On-Campus Programs (ADN and BSN): DCN works with clinical sponsors all over the Denver area to assign you to a clinical site. Check out our sample list of where some of our students have completed their clinical experiences.

Online Programs (RN to BSN and MSN): Online programs do not include traditional clinical experiences; however, experiential learning is included as an assignment in some courses. Experiential learning enables students to apply their learning in direct and indirect care activities that impact health outcomes for a variety of clients across the lifespan and across the continuum of care. For the RN to BSN or MSN student, this may include applying concepts from their courses, reflecting on this learning, and demonstrating competency in their place of work or other healthcare facilities. Experiential learning provides the opportunity for students to integrate new practice-related knowledge and skills. Competencies may also be demonstrated through virtual practice experiences.

Does Denver College of Nursing offer federal financial aid?

Yes, Denver College of Nursing is an eligible school under the Title IV Federal Financial Aid programs. Tuition financing plans are tailored to the needs of each individual student. Financial aid is available to students who qualify. The Financial Aid Department assists students in understanding the application process and the eligibility requirements for various federal, state, and/or private sources of student financial aid.

For more information about financial aid check out our Financing page.

Where is the DCN campus located?

Locations and directions to our Denver, Colorado, and Houston, Texas, campuses are available on our About Our Campuses page.

When and how do I apply to the programs?

Please see the Application Process page.

Is Denver College of Nursing accredited and approved?

Yes, Denver College of Nursing has both programmatic and institutional accreditation as outlined on the Accreditation and Approvals page.

Programmatic Accreditation

The on-campus ADN and BSN programs at Denver College of Nursing are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).

The online RN to BSN and MSN programs at Denver College of Nursing are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Institutional Accreditation

Denver College of Nursing is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

Is DCN authorized to award degrees? 

Yes, all DCN programs at the Denver, Colorado, campus and online programs are approved and regulated by the Colorado Commission on Higher Education and the Colorado Department of Higher Education. 

DCN programs at the Houston, Texas, campus are approved and regulated by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). 

DCN is authorized to grant the Associate Degree in Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and Master of Science in Nursing by these bodies.

Where can I view the annual security reports for DCN campuses?

View the Consumer Information page, where you can review the Campus Crime Report. 

Where can I view completion and placement rates for DCN programs?

View the Consumer Information page, where you can review Completion and Placement Rate information.

I’m a DCN graduate, how do I order my DCN transcript?

All students can request their official transcripts by downloading and submitting the Transcript Request form located on the Registrar page.