2022-2023 McMurry University Catalog 
    Mar 30, 2023  
2022-2023 McMurry University Catalog

Patty Hanks School of Nursing

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McM Box 686
Abilene, TX 79697
Offices are located at:
Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing
2149 Hickory Street
Abilene, TX 79601
Phone: (325) 671-2399
Fax: (325) 671-2386

Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing is a part of a consortium which provides collegiate nursing education in Texas. Through the Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing, McMurry University offers the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.


Dr. Donalyn J. Alexander


Professor: Alexander
Assistant Professors: Cooper, Milligan, Greaves, Letz, Wade
Instructors: Canada, Driskill, Pyenta, Washington

Mission Statement

Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing develops nurses and other healthcare providers through education enlightened by Christian principles to lead, serve and influence the holistic needs of a complex global society.


Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing prepares graduates of the nursing program to function as entry level nurse generalist and change agents in the delivery of a broad spectrum of health services required by society. Baccalaureate education also provides the foundational skills and knowledge required for graduate nursing education. The educational experiences are designed to assist students to develop an understanding of the nursing role in today’s complex health care environment.

Program Outcomes: Upon completion of this program the graduate will be prepared to:

  1. Utilize critical thinking, clinical judgment, and reasoning to deliver competent, holistic, ethno-culturally sensitive, and ethical nursing care.
  2. Demonstrate integrity, responsibility and accountability to clients, other health care workers and the profession of nursing in political, legal and ethical situations.
  3. Communicate and collaborate effectively with clients and interprofessional members of the health care team to influence local and global health outcomes.
  4. Demonstrate leadership and management skills in the delivery of health care services and the practice of professional nursing.
  5. Utilize Evidence-Based Practice, client care technologies and community resources to restore, maintain, and promote client health across the lifespan.
  6. Demonstrate personal, moral, ethical, spiritual, and professional development.
  7. Identify the influence of global perspectives on nursing within a complex society.

Approvals and Accreditation

The School of Nursing is approved by the Texas Board of Nursing. Graduates from the program are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination - Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN) for licensure as a Registered Nurse. This is contingent upon meeting all other Texas Board of Nursing requirements (refer to board rule 217.3 or visit http://www.bon.state.tx.us/exam-eligibility.asp for more information).
The Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing program at Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org/).


PHSSN Admission Requirements

Students must meet all parent university degree requirements. A separate admission process is required for students to be admitted to the School of Nursing. Admission is competitive, and the size of the classes is determined by the availability of space and clinical facilities. Admission to McMurry University does not guarantee admission to PHSSN.

  1. The School of Nursing will review all applications with a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 in the lower-division nursing curriculum based on a 4.0 scale. The selection process of the School of Nursing is highly competitive. To ensure a thorough and objective review of each applicant, the School of Nursing utilizes a point system to assess a pre-nursing student’s readiness for the BSN program. The admission point system is comprised of all the admission requirements - the cumulative GPA, general education requirement completion, science grades, HESI A2 Nursing Entrance Exam scores, and professional references. To be competitive, a student must achieve a minimum of 61% of the total possible points earned.
    Criteria Percent of Total Points Possible
    Applicant History 5% 4
    Pre-requiste Science Course Grades 34% 27
    HESI Exam Scores 31% 25
    Cumulative GPA 30% 24
    Totals 100% 80 Points
  2. Students are required to take the HESI A2 Nursing Entrance Exam. A HESI A2 cumulative score of 75% or better is required. A minimum score of 75% is required on each science section (Biology, Microbiology, and Anatomy & Physiology). Three attempts will be permitted. If the HESI A2 is repeated to improve scores, the highest score in each section will be considered for admission. HESI A2 scores are considered valid by PHSSN for two admission cycles (fall & spring or spring & summer or summer & fall). Therefore, the HESI A2 should not be attempted earlier than two academic semesters prior to the desired entry semester.
  3. Students are required to submit two professional or academic recommendation letters.
  4. All general education requirements must be completed prior to enrollment in the nursing program. Courses towards a minor may be completed during enrollment in the nursing program; however, nursing program schedules and requirements will not be adjusted, to accommodate courses towards a minor.
  5.  Anatomy & Physiology I, Anatomy & Physiology II, Microbiology, and Chemistry may only be repeated once unless previous attempts are more than five years old.
  6. Students must complete the required Anatomy & Physiology I & II, and Microbiology courses with a grade of at least ‘B’ before admission to PHSSN.
  7. Students must complete the required Pathophysiology course with a minimum grade of 83% before admission to PHSSN.
  8. Students must apply for admission to the School of Nursing. Students should contact the school of nursing for specific deadlines.
    For transcript evaluation contact the Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing:
    Phone: (325) 671-2399
    Fax: (325) 671-2386
  9. An offer of conditional admission with stipulations may be extended on a case by case basis

PHSSN Nursing Program Policies

  1. Once accepted, students must submit evidence of physical examination, and immunizations, consistent with meeting the requirements of the program. A current list of required immunizations can be found on the PHSSN website (www.phssn.edu).
  2. All students must submit to a criminal background check through a designated agency and a negative 10 panel drug screen.
  3. All students are required to attend orientation at the beginning of each fall/spring semester.
  4. Students who have any physical or learning disability must provide official written medical documentation of the disability and information attesting to his/her ability to meet the requirements of the program. Parent institution guidelines must be followed. The applicant/student must be able to meet the essential functions  with reasonable accommodations while enrolled in the nursing program.
  5. Throughout the program, students must maintain a level of mental and physical health consistent with meeting the objectives of the curriculum. If a student presents with a mental and/or physical health condition that may affect their ability to perform the essential functions of nursing, they must provide a doctor’s note clearly stating their ability to safely perform the essential functions of nursing.
  6. Students accepted into PHSSN are responsible for providing their own transportation to class and all clinical facilities.
  7. Students accepted into PHSSN must annually provide proof of medical health insurance. If not on parent’s insurance, the student must have a private policy.
  8. Students must successfully complete all nursing courses (with a minimum grade of ‘C’) in sequential order in each level before progression to the next level in the nursing curriculum. Pathophysiology must also be completed with a minimum grade of ‘83%’ to progress in the nursing curriculum.
  9. Applicants seeking admission by transfer must meet all published requirements for entry into the nursing program.
  10. If the student’s performance is unsatisfactory in the clinical setting, the faculty may recommend immediate dismissal from the program to the Dean.
  11. The student must annually provide proof of current CPR certification. The student will not be allowed in the classroom or clinical area without this certification. American Heart Association CPR for Health Care Provider is required. (National Safety Council, Heart Saver, & Heart Saver Plus are not acceptable).
  12. Professional liability insurance is required of each student. This insurance is included in the student’s fees.
  13. All PHSSN entering students are required to purchase physical assessment equipment that is supplied through the PHSSN. The cost of the equipment will be charged as a student fee.
  14. BSN nursing students are required to take standardized diagnostic program examinations each semester. The cost will be included in the student’s fees.
  15. In order for a student to meet program requirements for the completion of the BSN curriculum, the student must demonstrate minimal competency in nursing theory and practice. Competency is demonstrated through successful scoring on the identified standardized exit exam. Successful scoring on this examination is a portion of the course requirements.
  16. A student planning to withdraw, or request a leave of absence from the program is required to:
    • Meet with their faculty advisor to discuss his/her need to withdraw from the nursing program
    • Submit the PHSSN Withdrawal Form addressing the reasons for withdrawing/leave of absence from the nursing program
    • Complete required parent university forms/documentation, with appropriate faculty/advisor signatures.
      Withdrawal from the parent university is considered withdrawal from the School of Nursing.
      A student who fails to follow the prescribed procedure will not be issued letter(s) of recommendation or good standing by the School of Nursing.
  17. A student who fails to follow the prescribed protocal, course and grade requirements will not be issued letter(s) of recommendation or good standing by the School of Nursing.
  18. Students may reference the PHSSN Student Handbook for further processes and policies.




Before being admitted to the nursing program, a student must be admitted to McMurry and satisfy their admission requirements. In addition, a separate admission process is required for students to be admitted to the School of Nursing. ACCEPTANCE INTO THE LOWER-DIVISION COURSES DOES NOT GUARANTEE THAT STUDENTS WILL BE SELECTED FOR ENROLLMENT INTO THE SCHOOL OF NURSING.

The selection process for admission to the School of Nursing is competitive. The selection process is based on your cumulative GPA of all schools attended. The available seats will be given to those scoring the highest on this criteria. Applicants seeking admission by transfer must meet all the standards required by the university and school of nursing. Nursing core courses completed with a letter grade of less than C will not be accepted toward the RN to BSN Program.


To make application the student must be admitted and have completed nursing prerequisites.

Applicants must make personal contact with the School of Nursing when they begin the application process. Included with the application must be official transcript(s) of all colleges attended, including a McMurry transcript. It is the student’s responsibility to secure the documentation of any CLEP or Departmental Examination credit on their transcript prior to the application deadline date.

Full admission is granted to applicants who have met all admissions requirements verified by the Admissions, Progression, and Retention Committee, composed of PHSSN faculty. Applicants will be reviewed holistically and exclusively. No one factor will determine a student’s admission. The following is required of applicants for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing RN-BSN Program:

  1. Current, active RN unencumbered license in good standing - no restrictions;
  2. Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 for admission consideration. All calculated grades from schools attended are admission grade point average;
  3. Prerequisite course work completed with a grade of “C” or better, prior to the beginning of this program.
  4. Students must successfully complete all nursing courses (with a grade of ‘C’ or better) in sequential order in each level before progression to the next level in the curriculum.
  5. All applicants who receive offers of admission will consent to a criminal background check (a complete FBI/DPS background check). A history of criminal conduct or conviction may result in withdrawal of the admission offer.

All applicants must provide documentation of the following prior to enrollment:

  1. Professional liability insurance- paid in student fees
  2. Completion of a current physical
  3. Proof of health insurance
  4. Compliance with the CDC program mandated immunizations for health care workers (Refer to the CDC website: (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/specgrps/hcw.htm)
  5. Healthcare provider BLS or ACLS (CPR) certification (adult, infant, and child).
  6. Current negative 10 panel drug screen
  • For transcript evaluation contact Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing (325) 671-2399
  • Applications submitted through the Nursing Centralized Application Service (Nursing CAS). Nursing CAS will verify application for accuracy, calculate the GPA, and send applicant’s materials to PHSSN. www.nursingcas.org

NOTE: Students attending McMurry must fulfill the general education requirements set forth for the BSN student.

Graduate Studies

Dr. Donalyn Alexander: Dean

Offices located at:
2149 Hickory Street
Abilene, Texas 79601
Phone: 325-671-2399
Fax: 325-671-2386
Email: donalyn.alexander@phssn.edu
Web: www.phssn.edu


The mission of the Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing is to develop nurses and other healthcare providers through education enlightened by Christian principles to lead, serve and influence the holistic needs of a complex global society.


The purpose of the Master of Science in Nursing program is to prepare nurses to assume leadership roles in advanced positions as family nurse practitioners, educators, or managers of patient care services within a variety of institutions or health care agencies. In addition, students are guided to incorporate theory and the research process in a variety of roles and practical settings.

The graduate program of the Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing (PHSSN) functions within an educational consortium of two Christian universities. We accept the underlying philosophy and objectives of the consortium universities that individuals be educationally prepared in a manner that promotes the development of intellectual, cultural, moral and Christian values.

The graduate nursing programs build upon a baccalaureate nursing education. Faculty believe nursing is a profession that is responsive to the changing health care needs of individuals and is supported by an expanding body of knowledge. Faculty expect graduate students to expand their understanding of health, environment, person and nursing roles.

Faculty believe that development of critical thinking, communication, clinical skills, clinical judgment, and self-direction are essential elements in graduate nursing education. Faculty seek to promote awareness of social, cultural and ethnic diversity, believing it enriches professional growth and development. Faculty believe collaborative education promotes progressive mastery and increased learner maturity. Faculty promote accountability for lifelong learning, professional growth, competent practice and effective leadership.

Program Outcomes

  1. Practice advanced nursing roles using the nursing process to deliver holistic, and comprehensive care to individuals and families throughout the life cycle in a variety of settings within a specific population focus i.e. nursing education, advanced clinical practice.
  2. Implement validated strategies that incorporate the use of scientific inquiry and theoretical concepts from nursing and related fields to influence healthcare outcomes for individuals, populations, and healthcare systems.
  3. Analyze spiritual, cultural, social, legal, ethical, economic, and healthcare policy perspectives that influence health care or educational systems.
  4. Participate in interprofessional collaborative teams in the development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based strategies within various health care systems to foster quality improvement and safety.
  5. Integrate the use of information systems and patient care technologies in the development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based practices to support clinical judgment for improving health and patient care delivery to a diverse global society.
  6. Demonstrate the highest level of accountability for professional practice, service, and life-long learning.
  7. Engage in leadership through advocacy for evidence-based health policy development to improve local, national, and global health population outcomes.
  8. Prepare to complete a nationally recognized board certification exam.

Admission Criteria

In addition to the general graduate study entrance requirements, applicants for the Master of Science in Nursing degree must hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from a regionally accredited school or university whose nursing program is ACEN or CCNE accredited.

Full admission to graduate study in nursing requires meeting the academic standards as listed below and receiving the endorsement of the program director.

Academic Standards

  1. Overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0.
  2. GPA of 3.0 in all undergraduate course work in nursing.

Departmental Endorsement

Admission to the MSN requires the following to be submitted to or conducted by the School of Nursing:

  1. Unencumbered licensure to practice as an RN in Texas and in good standing with the Texas Board of Nursing.
  2. Minimum of one year of clinical nursing practice preferred.
  3. Three letters of recommendation. Recommendations should be obtained from supervisors having knowledge of your clinical skills, work ethic and style, and/or professors attesting to your academic achievements and potential success in a graduate nursing program.
  4. Completion of a PHSSN application. (http://www.nursingcas.org/)
  5. Interview with program director or faculty.
  6. For students whose first language is not English, an officially reported Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 550 (written).
  7. A completed PHSSN Health Form and proof of current immunization status.
  8. ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support Certification) is required for Family Nurse Practitioner students prior to beginning clinical courses.

Provisional Admission

Provisional admission to graduate study in nursing requires one of the two GPA Academic Standards listed above and obtaining Departmental Endorsement. Students granted provisional admission must maintain a 3.0 GPA during their first 9 hours of graduate work to be eligible to receive full admission and continue graduate study

Academic Standards Once Admitted:

Students must maintain a B average (minimum GPA of 3.0). In all clinical courses, students must make a B or better for progression in clinical courses in the curriculum. A grade of “C”, “D” or “F” does not meet criteria for progression in the program and results in academic probation and/or suspension. All students not receiving a B or above in a course must retake the course before progression in clinical courses is granted. Failure of the same course twice results in permanent dismissal from the program. If a student earns a “C” in any two courses, this will result in immediate and permanent dismissal from the program.


    Bachelor of Science in NursingMaster of Science in Nursing



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