South Carolina Nurse Practitioner Licensure Steps - 2022

AKA: NP License in SC, APRN Licensure

Last Reviewed: October 1st, 2022

Nurse Practitioner Licensure Requirements in South Carolina

The South Carolina Board of Nursing (SCBON) ensures that only qualified and adequately trained nurses will get the NP license. Nurse practitioner licenses are issued to applicants who meet the following requirements:

  • RN license
  • Advanced education requirements
  • National certification
  • Completing a state licensure application

Follow below to learn how to become a nurse practitioner (NP) in South Carolina.

Registered Nurse (RN) license

Already have your RN License?Skip to the next section

The RN license is a major prerequisite for NP licensure. Every NP license applicant must first possess a Registered Nurse (RN) license before receiving the advanced licensure. To become a registered nurse, there are educational requirements you should meet. RN license holders must have acquired a high school diploma, an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). To obtain any of these degrees, you must apply to a nursing school recognized by the South Carolina Board of Nursing.

Find a full list of accredited nursing schools in South Carolina here.

The full-time ADN degree program lasts for 18 to 32 months, while the full-time BSN will take about four years to complete. If you enroll on a part-time basis, the length of the program will take longer. However, BSN degree programs will give you an edge in landing your preferred jobs as an RN. If you have an ADN and want to upgrade it to a BSN, there are ADN to BSN bridge programs you can take. These bridge programs are three-semester programs lasting twelve to eighteen months. You can find nursing schools that offer bridge programs among accredited nursing schools.

RN Licensure by Examination

After meeting the educational qualifications, your next step is to apply for the RN licensing examination. To kickstart the application for examination, you will first apply to the South Carolina Board of Nursing to get an eligibility confirmation. Next, the SCBON will send your eligibility confirmation to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN), which runs the RN licensing exam.

The National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX-RN) is the examination that opens the door for the registered nurse license. The NCSBN has contracted Pearson VUE, a computer-based testing organization, to conduct the NCLEX-RN. Visit the Pearson VUE website to begin the application process.

The Pearson VUE application has an examination fee of $200. You can make the payment on the Pearson VUE online payment prepaid, credit card, and debit card platforms. After making the payment, you will receive an Authorization to Test (ATT) document in the mail.

The ATT is valid for 90 days and provides your candidate number, test dates, and available test centers close to where you live. You can choose from the test centers and dates and schedule your test. South Carolina Board of Nurses requires an NCLEX renewal every two years.

To get your NCLEX-RN test results, you can either wait for the SCBON to send them to your mail within two to four weeks or get the unofficial test results. You can pay $9.95 for the Quick Results Service (QRS) to access the unofficial test results. You can call 1-900-776-2539 to use the QRS and get the unofficial results two business days after your exam date. You can also obtain the unofficial results from the Pearson VUE website for $7.95.

Graduate nurses can receive temporary licenses while they complete the NCLEX-RN process.

RN Licensure by Endorsement

If you have attained an RN license in another state and want to work in South Carolina, you will get this done by applying for a license by endorsement. Only a license by endorsement will authorize you to practice in South Carolina.

To begin the licensure by endorsement process, fill out and submit the SCBON licensure by endorsement application form online and pay the required fees.

Fill out and submit the Affidavit of Eligibility form online or attached to your mailed application.

Applicants with RN equivalents outside the U.S or Canada must attach a successful English proficiency test result.

To conclude both the licensure by examination and licensure by endorsement applications, you should open a NURSYS account. After that, place South Carolina as your new practice state.

If your former practice state doesn’t use NURSYS, then the nursing board in your state will complete and submit your Verification of Licensure form and send it to the SCBON.

For both routes, you will require a criminal background check. The board will let you know how to do your criminal background check. You should also request that your transcript be sent to this email address or mailed to:

South Carolina Board of Nursing
PO Box 12367
Columbia, SC 29211

The educational minimum requirement to become a nurse practitioner is the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). However, there is a push to change the education requirement be a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree by the year 2025. If you pursue a DNP now, or a doctorate in a related field, you are more likely to land leadership positions much earlier. The full-time MSN degree should last for 18 to 24 months, while the DNP degree will last for 2 to 3 years.

Before you can gain admission to attain an MSN degree, you will require some nursing experience. This requirement ensures that nurse practitioners are well-grounded in professional practice before getting their licenses.

Advanced Education Requirements

To get an NP certification, you will require more than a BSN. The minimum requirement for nurse practitioner licensure is a post-graduate nursing degree.

You need to enroll and receive at least a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree to be eligible for the NP license. A full-time MSN program will take from 18 to 24 months to finish. If you can get a doctorate in a related discipline or a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree, you have a greater chance of attaining leadership positions.

Nursing schools will require some clinical experience as part of the requirements for an MSN degree.

Find nurse practitioner degree programs in South Carolina.

National Certification

National certification is a prerequisite for NP licensure in South Carolina. There are several national certifying bodies that the SCBON has approved for you. You must apply for national certification to only accredited organizations. The SCBON has approved five certifying bodies. These are:

  • American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)
  • American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
  • American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN)
  • National Certification Corporation (NCC)
  • Pediatric Nurses Certification Board (PNCB)

To attain the authority to prescribe medication, a prospective NP will require 45 contact hours of pharmacotherapeutics within the past two years preceding the application. Click here to apply for prescriptive authority. The processing fee for prescriptive authority is $20.

Applying for the Nurse Practitioner License

It’s time to apply for a state license. Visit the APRN application page to fill out and submit your application. You require a background check. Then, get your institution to send a copy of the transcript or national certification to the board of nursing.

Other advanced practice nurse associations are:

You will require your social security and permanent residency card, a passport or vital statistics birth certificate, your nursing license document from another state or U.S territory. Other necessary documents include proof of residence and a 2″ by 2″ signed passport photograph.

Then, request verification from your original licensing state.

A permanent license attracts a fee of $130. Temporary licenses attract $10.

If your original licensing state is a member of NURSYS, process your verification through their online portal. Then, send the verification form to your original licensing state. After fourteen days, check your verification status here.