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How do I apply for the Post-Graduate Certificate programs?

Admission to the Post-Graduate Certificate is limited to advanced practice registered nurses with a master’s or doctoral degree from a Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education- or National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission-accredited program and who have current national certification in their specialty.

To be considered for admission to the Post-Graduate Certificate program, an applicant must:

  • Submit a university application and a curriculum vitae or resume.
  • Hold a master’s degree in nursing from an accredited college or university.
  • Possess a current unrestricted license to practice nursing as a registered nurse in the applicant's state or country and specialty certification. 
  • A minimum grade-point average of 3.0 (4.0 scale) for the Master of Science in Nursing.
  • Possess current certification from a U.S. National Certifying Board as an NP, CNS, CRNA or CNM.
  • Have a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 (4.0 scale) for total credits completed during the graduate nursing program.
  • Submit a written essay that addresses the applicant’s career goals and motivations for additional graduate study in the selected area of specialty nursing practice; nurse practitioner, or adult-gerontology clinical nurse.
  • Submit three letters of recommendation. The reference letters must be from a source that has direct knowledge of the applicant’s work and educational experience.
  • Complete an admission interview with the College of Nursing faculty. Recommendations for admission are made by the faculty committee to the dean of the college based on the requirements for admission and the personal interview.
  • If the applicant’s native language is not English, the applicant must complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum average score of 550, no subscore below 52 on the paper-based test (PBT). If the applicant completes the Internet-based test (iBT), no subscore below 19 for reading, listening, and speaking; no writing subscore below 22 and a minimum average score of 80. Applicants should have all test scores sent from the testing agency directly to the Michigan State University Office of Admissions.

Following the initial screening, applicants identified as well-matched with the College of Nursing academic standards and program focus will be contacted for a required personal interview with program faculty. Recommendations for admission are made by the faculty committee to the dean of the college based on the requirements for admission and the personal interview.

A gap analysis will be conducted to assess competency and prior course work in the three core APRN clinical courses (3Ps).

  • NUR 907: Advanced Pathophysiology for the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse
  • NUR 908: Advanced Physical Assessment for the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse
  • NUR 909: Advanced Pharmacology for the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse

Applicants may choose to take any of the above courses for refresher. Faculty will assess compatibility of previous courses in these areas and may require one or all before enrolling in the graduate certificate. The student must demonstrate pharmacology course work (credit and/or continuing education credit) within the past five years.

Out-of-state applicants

Students who reside outside the state of Michigan who are considering an on-line nursing program should contact the appropriate board in their state of residency to confirm whether the course or program meets requirements for professional licensure in the student’s state of residence prior to beginning a course of study. MSU has an up-to-date, state-by-state summary available online.