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Associate Degree Nursing

El Centro College’s Associate Degree Nursing program leads to the Associate Degree Nursing AAS (Associate in Applied Sciences degree) and can be completed in two years over fall and spring semesters.

North Lake College serves as a satellite campus for El Centro’s ADN program. Students can attend all ADN classes at North Lake and receive their degree from El Centro College.

El Centro also partners with Texas Health Resources, Hospital Corporation of America Inc., the Dallas VA Medical Center and Methodist Health System for a distance learning program, Hospital Partners.

LVN-RN Advanced Placement “Bridge” Program

A licensed vocational nurse (LVN) may complete the Associate Degree Nursing program via the LVN to RN Advanced Placement (“Bridge”) program at El Centro College.

Acceptance to the Bridge program is via a competitive selection process based on grade point average of primary prerequisite courses. The LVN to RN information packet details the procedure for program application. Admission to this program is open to applicants who have not previously been enrolled in an Associate Degree Nursing program, although an applicant may petition the dean for admission consideration.

Applicants must complete all entrance requirements as outlined in the information packet and must possess a current Texas LVN license. The clinical skills expectations of the program require applicants to have had at least six months’ recent work experience as an LVN in a hospital medical/surgical environment prior to admissions.

LVNs who are accepted to the Advanced Placement program enroll in three advanced placement or “bridge” courses: a three-credit-hour lecture course; a one-credit-hour skills component; and a one-credit-hour clinical component that involves two full days of classes for the first semester of the Advanced Placement program. After successful completion of the “bridge” semester, the student enters the final two semesters of the traditional Associate Degree Nursing program. At the completion of the program, 19 additional credit hours are awarded for the first two semesters of the traditional Associate Degree Nursing program.

Perioperative Nursing Enhanced Skills Certificate

El Centro College's Perioperative Nurse Internship program offers registered nurses and graduate nurses the opportunity to acquire additional theory and skills required for patient care in the surgical setting. The emphasis of the program is on the scrub and circulating roles. Upon successful completion of this two-semester program, nurses receive the Perioperative Nursing Enhanced Skills certificate.

How to Get Started 

All information about application, admission, requirements and curriculum for the Associate Degree Nursing program is fully detailed in the information packet, which you should download, print out and bring to an information session. You can also get an information packet sent to you from El Centro Health Occupations by calling the Admissions Office at 972-860-5001 or checking the contact page

Online Information Sessions
Although not required for application to this program, viewing an online information session is strongly encouraged and will address program admissions, application, and acceptance policies in detail.

When to Apply

Classes form in both fall and spring semesters for El Centro College and its satellite campus at North Lake College.

Filing periods for application are:

  • Fall 2016 semester admission: November 1 – January 31 filing period with acceptance notification by April 30.
  • Spring 2015 semester admission: May 1 - July 15 filing period with acceptance notification by Oct. 15.

How to Apply

  • Admission to the Associate Degree Nursing program is by a competitive ranking process.
  • Prospective students are strongly encouraged to view an information session for El Centro College or its extension campus at North Lake College.
  • By submitting complete application materials, potential applicants are expected to be familiar with the application requirements and process. View the ADN information packet.
  • Applicants must submit a complete application packet to the El Centro College Health Occupations Admissions Office either in person or by mail before the application filing deadline.
  • Incomplete packets will not be considered in the selection process and will be returned to the applicant. 

Criminal Background Check and Drug Testing

All students enrolled in Health Occupations programs are required by Dallas/Fort Worth Hospital Council member facilities to undergo a criminal background check and drug testing prior to beginning their clinical experience.

This procedure is conducted after students have been accepted to their respective program and costs approximately $85. For more information on the criminal background check and drug screening, see page 12 of the information packet.

After being accepted into the program, Nursing students must also go through an FBI criminal background check through the Texas Board of Nursing prior to the first day of class (approximate cost $39). Specific information is available upon acceptance into the program.


Dallas County residents pay $156 per three-hour class — that’s $52 per credit hour, or just $624 for a full semester load of 12 credit hours.

Compare that to what you’d pay elsewhere! See our tuition rates for tuition according to your place of residency.

Rising Star Program

If you are a Dallas County high school graduating senior, you may qualify for Rising Star funds to help pay for this program. The Rising Star program offers academic support services and up to $4,000 for tuition and books, if you have established financial need.

Courses Offered (Curriculum)

Our catalog provides detailed information about the courses we offer and the courses required for the associate degree and certificate we offer.

Accreditation and Affiliations

Each of the Dallas County Community College District’s seven colleges — Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland — is individually accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

El Centro’s Associate Degree Nursing program is accredited by the ACEN Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850; Atlanta, Ga., 30326; phone: 404-975-5000; fax: 404-975-5020) and approved by the Texas Board of Nursing.


Degrees and certificates in our Nursing programs are designed for direct entry into the workforce. However, if you are interested in earning a degree at a four-year institution, please visit the Transfer Services website for guidance on the transfer process.

DCCCD has signed a concurrent enrollment agreement with the University of North Texas System Center in Dallas. This enables our students who meet the UNT admission requirements or complete the Associate in Applied Sciences degree to be automatically admitted to the University of North Texas.

A student may apply for concurrent admission status at the time of first enrollment in our courses or at any later time during enrollment by completing a UNT concurrent admissions application.

Related Programs

Not sure exactly what you want to study?

You may want to explore some other health-related programs we offer, such as Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Radiologic Sciences or the Respiratory Care Program.

Other Degree and Certificate Options

The colleges of DCCCD offer nearly 350 career and technical degrees and certificates, plus more than 50 academic degrees. For more information, see a chart of our degree plans by college or visit our credit programs home page.

Faculty Profiles

Our Associate Degree Nursing faculty not only have degrees and certifications in their field but have on-the-job experience, making them able to relate to the challenges you’ll face in the workplace. Our faculty members work closely with you one-on-one, encouraging you and helping you to prepare for your career in nursing.

See profiles of some of our Associate Degree Nursing faculty.

Contact Us

If you have questions about our Associate Degree Nursing program that aren’t answered on our website, please feel free to contact us.

For details about graduation rates, program costs and other important information, view the gainful employment disclosure.