Admissions - Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I send my application materials? Application materials can be sent to:

Office of Admissions and Student Services
Box 102400
307 Trent Drive
Durham, NC 27710

Does the School of Nursing accept electronic transcripts? Yes, electronic transcripts can be emailed to SON-DOCUMENTS@dm.duke.edu.

Can I fax my transcripts? Official transcripts are required to apply. These transcripts must be received directly from the institution in electronic formate, or in a sealed envelope. Transcripts may be faxed for an unofficial transcript evaluation or to help determine prerequisite completion. Please review the information below on how to initiate this service.

What is the fax number to the Office of Admissions and Student Services? The fax number is 919-668-4693.

What is the required GRE score needed to apply? The School of Nursing considers every application on its own individual merits. The GRE is one metric used in the evaluation process; however the score does not necessarily exclude any one applicant from consideration.

The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is required for all applicants who have an undergraduate GPA below 3.4. The GRE is waived if you have an undergraduate GPA of 3.4 or higher or if you hold an earned master's or higher level degree from a regionally accredited institution. A competitive GRE score would fall within the top 50th percentile on both the verbal and quantitative components. More information regarding GRE scores is available online at www.ets.org.

When should I take the GRE? In order for an application to be considered complete, the GRE scores must be received at the time of application.

What is the school code for the School of Nursing? Scores should be sent directly to Duke University Graduate College. Our school code is R5156. Click here for more information on how to submit GRE scores. It typically takes 10-15 days for a score to reflect in the Duke system once it is released by the testing agency.

Can I take the prerequisite courses at a community college or online? Yes. The prerequisite courses can be completed at any accredited college/university or community college. They can also be taken online.

Should I contact the admissions office to set up a personal interview? No. The admissions committee reviews applications to determine who will be interviewed. You will be contacted by a staff member if you are chosen to interview. The staff member will arrange the interview date/time for you.

If I am offered admission, can I defer my acceptance to another semester?
As a general rule, the School of Nursing does not permit deferrals unless there are extenuating circumstances beyond a student’s control that would prevent them from enrolling in the term they were admitted. If you have a concern about your ability to start for the semester admitted, please contact the Office of Admissions and Student Services.

ABSN Program FAQ

Is the GRE required? No.The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is waived for ABSN applicants who have a cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.4 or higher, or those with an earned master’s degree or higher. Only the credits used to complete the undergraduate degree will be considered for the GRE waiver. Courses taken after the undergraduate degree has been earned will not be considered to improve a student’s academic performance. All applicants with below a 3.4 cumulative undergraduate GPA are required to submit GRE scores.

Are there any part-time or online options available for the ABSN program? No. The ABSN program is a full-time program in which students are encouraged not to hold employment while in the program. There are no online options available.

Do all of the prerequisite courses need to be completed when I apply for the ABSN program? No, all prerequisite courses need to be completed prior to enrolling into the ABSN Program. We also strongly recommend that if it has been over five years since you completed the prerequisite science courses (anatomy, physiology, microbiology) that you consider retaking them as a refresher before the program begins.

Would I be able to request a transcript evaluation by the school? Yes. Evaluation deadline dates are February 15 and September 15 for each application cycle for everyone who has submitted an application. For example: For a May 1st application deadline, you will need to submit official transcripts from every college or university attended no later than February 15th for an evaluation. For a December 1st application deadline, you will need to submit official transcripts from every college or university attended no later than September 15th.

All transcripts must be sent via email to SONDocuments@dm.duke.edu or mailed to Office of Admissions and Student Services at 307 Trent Drive, Box 102400, Durham, NC 27710.

After your documents are received, please allow up to four weeks for your evaluation to be completed. You will be able to log into your application to view what has been received by our office as well as which transcripts are outstanding.

Graduate Program FAQ

Is the GRE required? The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is waived for all applicants who have a cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.4 or higher, or those with an earned master’s degree or higher. All applicants with below a 3.4 cumulative undergraduate GPA are required to submit GRE scores.

Is part-time study available? Yes, part-time study is available (excluding the Nurse Anesthesia and Accelerated BSN Programs). In most cases, students may work directly with their advisor to develop a course plan that is individually tailored to personal needs.

How often will I have classes? Most on-campus graduate courses are taught one day a week. Students are generally able to group their courses so that they are on campus 2 days a week, which allows students to continue to work while attending school.

How many years of nursing experience must I have before applying to Duke's graduate programs? It is recommended, but not required, that applicants have one year of nursing experience before applying. Applicants to the Nurse Anesthesia Program are required to have at least one year of acute care RN experience. All Neonatal Nurse Practitioner applicants need two years of clinical experience before starting clinical courses.

What do successful DUSON MSN applicants look like?
Each applicant and DUSON student is unique, but there are some features that many successful students share. In addition to demonstrating academic excellence and aptitude for demanding graduate coursework, successful candidates can clearly articulate the role for which they are applying and demonstrate an understanding of both the daily responsibilities as well as prominent issues for the field. The admissions committee reviews each application including the personal statement, and considers the potential success of the applicant in a graduate program that requires critical thought and ability to form logical arguments in writing. The admissions committee also considers the applicant’s potential for leadership and to advancing the practice, service, research, or teaching in the chosen field.

What types of recommendation letters should I get for my application?
Every applicant is unique and we recognize that individuals have a variety of work and educational experiences and personal circumstances. Three professional letters of reference are required. The letters of reference should address your academic ability as well as your abilities, character, and accomplishments in nursing. Successful applicants typically have at least one reference letter from a professor or teacher and one reference letter from a work supervisor. Individuals providing letters of reference should have had recent educational or professional relationships with the prospective applicant (<5 years.) Letters from current work supervisors are particularly helpful to the MSN Admissions Committee. In addition, letters of reference from individuals that have the degree/credential from the program that the applicant is applying for can be used to demonstrate that the applicant has an understanding of the role that they are seeking, which is an important admissions consideration.