Master's Program FAQ

How often do you admit students into your program?

We admit once a year. Applications are due February 1 for fall matriculation. Learn more about the admissions process.

Do I need to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) to apply for admissions into the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program?

No, the GRE is not a requirement for admission into the MSN program.

Do I have to be admitted into the program to start taking graduate nursing classes?

No, you can take up to three courses (no more than 7 credits) in the MSN as a non-degree seeking student. However, to progress in the program you must be an admitted/degree-seeking student and if there are any program changes, those courses may not count toward the new program.

What are the requirements for admissions into the MSN program?

You must have a BSN degree from an accredited nursing program with a minimum of a 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) cumulative grade point average. You must also have an active, unencumbered and unrestricted nursing license in the state where you will be doing your clinical hours/practicums. For other specific requirements for each track, please visit admissions and click on the information for the track you are interested in.

When is the application deadline for admissions to the Graduate College?

All required application materials are due to the Graduate College by February 1.

How do I apply for admission to the program?

Visit the Graduate College. The online application form can be found on the Future Students page.

What are the various areas of concentration in the MSN program?

We have two tracks in our MSN program: 1) Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) or 2) Nursing Education (NE) track. Additionally, we offer an advanced graduate (post master's) FNP certificate or NE certificate if you already hold a master’s degree in nursing.

How long will it take me to obtain my MSN degree?

If you pursue full-time coursework you can complete the FNP program in 16 months and the NE program in 12 months. Part-time course work can be completed for all tracks in three years.

How many credits do I need to take per semester to be considered a full-time student?

Nine credits per semester is the Graduate College definition for full time; however, School of Nursing full time plans of study are 10-12 credits per semester.

How long do I have to complete the program?

You must complete all course work and your culminating experience within six years.

What happens if I do not complete the program in the allotted time period?

You will be required to repeat the courses that are six years old (or older) to meet university requirements.

Does the six-year period start at the time I’m admitted into the program?

No, it begins from the date when you take your first graduate course.

Can I work full-time while going through the program?

It is possible to work full-time while in the program; however, we recommend that you work only part-time or not at all. The programs are rigorous and require preparation time outside of the classroom/internet class. It has been our experience that students in the FNP track find it difficult to keep a full-time work schedule once they begin their clinical rotations. Students in the NE track also find full-time work challenging while doing their teaching practicum.

Do I have to attend weekly classes on campus throughout the program?

No, if you are in the NE track you will meet on campus once at the beginning of the program and at the end of the program for your culminating experience. If you are in the FNP, you may be required to meet three times a trimester during your clinical practicum courses. However, the majority of course content for all tracks is taught online, asynchronously.

Are scholarships or financial aid available to students?

Yes, you may apply for financial aid through our Financial Aid Office. Additionally, nursing fellowships and scholarships are available to a limited number of qualified individuals. To be eligible for Scholarships controlled by the School of Nursing, students must complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Do I have to complete a thesis?

No, each track has its own defined culminating experience.

Where can I find information about culminating experience preparation?

From your Advisor once you are admitted into the program.

What if I live out of state?

Out of state students should first check if their state is a member of the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA). If your state is a member, you are eligible to apply for the NE track. For the FNP track, students are also advised to check with their respective state board of nursing regarding the education requirements to apply for APRN licensure and if there are additional requirements when education occurs outside of your state of residence.