Master of Nursing Admissions Requirements

General Information

As you prepare your application to Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, the Admissions Staff are available to answer questions you may have.  Please contact us at:

The master of nursing application is now open for spring 2023. Faculty begin reviewing MN applications on August 1, after which admissions are on a rolling basis. There is no published deadline; however, this new program is very competitive and has a limited number of spaces for incoming students. Applicants who meet the August 1 priority review date have a greater probability of being admitted. In order to be considered in the August 1 priority review group, the application must be completed (not just submitted) prior to 11:59 PM EST on August 1.

School of Nursing applications are self-managed. We do not routinely contact applicants regarding missing application materials. After submission of the application, applicants are responsible for monitoring the checklist on their application status page for missing transcripts, references and the like.

Holistic Application Review

Admission requirements vary somewhat depending upon your educational background. All applicants are holistically reviewed based on the following factors:

  1. Start application at to create a file in Vanderbilt's admissions system. Start the application BEFORE sending any transcripts or recommendations to Vanderbilt. If you send documents without completing the academic history section of the application, the materials become "orphans" in the system which delays processing your application.
  2. The Statement of Purpose should reflect the applicant’s understanding of the role of the registered nurse and their interest in nursing. Before writing the statement of purpose, please carefully review information about MN program on our website so that you clearly indicate that your career goals are a fit with nursing.

    Students are offered admission to the MN program only; it is not possible to enter the program and then request to move to the PreSpecialty/MSN program at VUSN. While the online application system allows applicants to submit more than one application, the School of Nursing can only consider one application per student per term.
  3. It is recommended that applicants earn a grade point average of at least a “B” or a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  4. Applicants must provide their complete academic history. Applicants must list all post-secondary institutions attended whether or not a degree was earned.
  5. The School of Nursing requires official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, whether you receive a degree or not. After listing the college or university on the Academic History page on the application, request to have your official transcript sent. Electronic transcripts are preferred so request that your school Registrar(s) send your electronic transcripts to the CDM at The Registrar (not the applicant) may send paper transcripts to the Center for Data Management| Vanderbilt University| PMB 407833| 2301 Vanderbilt Place |Nashville, TN 37240-7833. To make the October 15 11:59 EST priority review date, it is strongly recommended that your Registrar(s) send your transcript(s) to the CDM no later than October 1.

    Applicants who have completed academic degrees or taken courses outside of the United States should refer to additional transcript information in the international student section of this page.
  6. All applicants must provide three letters of academic or professional reference. References should be from faculty members, professional colleagues, or work supervisors who can evaluate your potential for success in a graduate program. It is required that at least one of your recommenders hold a master’s or higher degree. Recommendations from family, friends, other students or co-workers are NOT appropriate. While only three references are required, the online application system will allow you to provide names of up five recommenders. Faculty read and score only three references so there is no benefit in providing five names.
  7. All applicants must respond to the application questions. Both the writing style (i.e. grammar, punctuation, spelling, word use) and content of your responses will be used in the overall evaluation of your application to the program.
  8. All applicants are required to have certain prerequisite courses from an accredited college or university with a grade of C or better. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic many schools converted to a pass/fail grade basis for spring 2020 courses. Therefore, we will accept a grade of “pass” on a prerequisite taken in spring 2020.  Prerequisites do not have to be completed at the time of application but must be completed by the time our classes start in January.
    1. If you have earned a BA or BS in a discipline other than Nursing, you must have successfully completed 11 hours of Natural Science including courses in Microbiology, Human Anatomy, and Human Physiology; Statistics; Nutrition and Developmental Psychology. The Human Anatomy, Human Physiology and Microbiology courses must have been taken within 5 years of application and should include a lab component. Online courses taken at an accredited college/ universities are accepted.
  9. All applicants must meet the competencies necessary for the professional practice of nursing. MN applicants must meet the eligibility requirements for nursing licensure in Tennessee. For more information on licensure, visit the Tennessee Department of Health website at:
  10. Vanderbilt University School of Nursing is required to meet state higher education requirements and state board of nursing requirements for students who reside outside of Tennessee. States with specific requirements are listed found on the Professional Licensure and Out of State Requirements page.
  11. All information submitted in the application process must be the applicant’s own work, factually true, complete, and honestly presented. Applicants providing false or incomplete information may be subject to a range of possible disciplinary actions, including admission revocation, expulsion or revocation of course credit, grades and degree.
  12. After submitting the application, monitor your application checklist. Your application cannot be sent for faculty review until the CDM has posted official transcripts to your application and at least three references have been received. It is the applicant’s responsibility to be sure all application items have been received.
  13. If you have questions about the admissions requirements, the Admissions Office is available to assist you. Please contact us at or 1.888.333.9192.