What do you do in preparation of applying to a graduate school?

  1. I just got it into my head that I might want to get a master's in nursing. The schools I'm considering are CSU Fullerton, UCLA, Loma Linda University, and Western University of Health Sciences. So far I get the idea that you mainly need to do well in the prerequisite classes and maybe have some clinical experiences, but is there anything else?

    Also, I was wondering if there are any websites that review the above colleges. I know UCLA is hard to get into as an undergraduate, and I'm curious if the competition is even worse as a graduate. And stuff.

    Thanks.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   elkpark
    I do not mean this as criticism at all, just as the guidance you are asking for -- but the first thing you would want to do is figure out whether you really want an MSN, why, and in what specific specialty. Any graduate school to which you apply is going to expect you to be able to articulate why you want an MSN, what you plan to do with it after you've got it, and what you, as an individual, will bring to that particular field.

    best wishes --
  4. by   CNM2B
    Do you know what type of master's you are going to get? I think in addition to grades and test scores, letters of recommendation rank very high in priority. I was just accepted to a very competitive CNM program and all of the applicants had high GPA's and high test scores. My faculty advisor told me that one of my letters of recommendation was the deciding factor on my application. Make sure you have really great references by people who can write compelling letters.
    Hope this helps!!
  5. by   SteveNNP
    It depends... Columbia University's undergrad programs have a lower acceptance rate than it's grad programs.. probably because of the much larger ratio of applicants to slots. I was pretty easily accepted to my NNP program primarily because it's not one of the most competitive ones. I am in a class of 3 right now, going up to around 5-6 once clinicals start. I think it depends on a well-articulated essay/personal statement, acceptable grades, and class capacity. Popular programs like CRNA, FNP and ANP/ACNP may be more difficult to get into due to class size limitations.
  6. by   JBudd
    First thing I did was look at what the different masters available were. Some were definately NOT what I wanted to do (admin, uggh).

    I looked at how much it would cost, and if any tuition was covered by my hospital; and what difference it would make in my salary (how long to earn back what I put in).

    Once I decided to apply, I went through the website to see in detail what would be involved, and started asking people if they would give me my letters of reference.

    There shouldn't be much in the way of prereqs, since graduate school is based on your already having your bachelor's; some programs said you should have had a stats course within 5 years. I'd been out for over 20 years, did not take any classes before going into grad school (especially that stats class). Did have to take the GRE, so I practiced for that online a bit. My school got rid of the GRE req about 2 semesters after I got in:trout:

    My school has a set of courses required (core) for all masters programs, then you take your specialty classes, then field work.

    My master's won't do much in my current (clinical) work, but it opens doors to an entirely other area of nursing. I was surprised at how little most of the core classes had to do with clinical practice; they concentrate on theory, research, politics, roles, etc.

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