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Admission Requirements

The following requirements must be met prior to consideration for admission into the Nurse Anesthesia program:

  • Bachelor's degree with an upper division nursing major from a program accredited by the National League for Nursing (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing education (CCNE); or an Associate/Diploma degree in Nursing from an accredited program with a bachelor's degree in another field (RN to MSN Pathway).
  • Completion of application for admission, including copies of all post-secondary educational transcripts.
  • The bachelor's or post-bachelor's course work must include satisfactory completion of a course in descriptive and inferential statistics.
  • Basic Life Support; Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification & Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification.
  • Cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or higher (4.0 scale) or evidence of outstanding graduate academic achievement.
  • Completion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) within five years of application (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing sections) with scores available before October 15 (Early Decision deadline) or December 1 (Priority Application deadline). GRE scores are required and cannot be waived.
  • Personal interview (by invitation) with members of the Nurse Anesthesia Admission Committee will be offered to qualified applicants. Applicants selected for interview are usually notified mid to late March via e-mail notification followed by a personal letter. We use e-mail as our primary means of communication; consequently, please ensure your e-mail address is current with the Office of Admissions and Student Services. We do not always follow all e-mail communications with a letter or phone contact; therefore, please select a reliable e-mail provider.
  • At the time of application submission, the applicant must have a minimum of one year (two years preferred) current, continuous full-time acute care experience as a registered nurse in a critical care setting which offers the applicant an opportunity to develop as an independent decision-maker capable of using and interpreting advanced monitoring techniques based on their knowledge of physiological and pharmacological principles. Adult acute care experience offering on interpretation and use of advanced monitoring, care of ventilated patients, pharmacologic hemodynamic management, and independent decision making is preferred. CCRN certification is strongly encouraged. Experience areas preferred include:
    • Surgical Intensive Care
    • Medical Intensive Care
    • Cardiac Intensive Care
    • Neuro Intensive Care
    • Pediatric or Neonatal Intensive Care
  • Three professional references attesting to academic ability, professional competency and professional qualifications are required. One reference must be from an immediate supervisor and include a contact phone number. References must rate professional performance as excellent or above average.
  • Applicants must possess the physical and mental skills necessary to successfully complete the School of Nursing curriculum. (Refer to current Student Handbook; Technical Standards section)
  • Submission of a personal statement describing the applicant's personal career goals and interest in graduate study.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores from applicants whose native language is not English or who have not completed their high school and college education in the U.S. (Refer to the Duke University School of Nursing Application Admissions Procedures: Additional Requirements for International Applicants.)
  • Submit the completed application and all supporting documents no later than December 1 preceding the August matriculation date. Incomplete applications will not be considered after the December 1 deadline.
  • E-Portfolio is not required.

Successful completion of the nurse anesthesia program (83 course credits) requires a substantial time commitment averaging 50-60 hours per week (includes class time, clinical, and study time) during the 36-month program.

The curriculum is designed for 36-months of full-time study. Historically, given the rigorous nature of the program, students find it difficult to subsidize their educational expenses through part-time employment.