May 30, 2024  
2017-2018 Academic Bulletin (Catalog) (Jan 2018) 
2017-2018 Academic Bulletin (Catalog) (Jan 2018) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Admission and Selection

College Admission Policy

The College of Nursing  conducts, through its programmatic admissions committees, appropriate and timely review of student applications and supporting credentials. The resulting decisions and recommendations reflect high academic standards and observance of applicable legal statutes, as well as policies of the University of Tennessee System, the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, the College of Nursing , and the individual programs. Admissions procedures, processes and recommendations afford equal educational opportunity to all applicants without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, handicap or veteran status.

Applications to the BSN, DNP, and Certificate Programs are accepted through NursingCAS, a national nursing centralized application service. Applicants can access the NursingCAS application site at: The NursingCAS requires applicants to enter all courses taken for credit, including course name, number, and grade.

Only individuals whose application files are complete and have paid the application fee will be considered by the College of Nursing Admissions Committee. Preference is given to residents of Tennessee, but out- of-state applicants are also given consideration. The following table provides an overview of admission criteria for each of the educational programs. Additional criteria for specific DNP concentrations may apply. Details of program admission criteria may be found in the program sections of this bulletin and may be accessed through the College of Nursing’s website at:

Table 1. Admission Criteria

  BSN Program DNP Program Certificates
Cumulative Grade
Point Average
3.0 non-nurses/
2.5 for registered nurses (RN)
3.0 (all college work)
3.2 (most recently completed degree)
3.0 (all college work)
3.2 (most recently completed degree)
TEAS: Above national median GRE >1000 (before 2012) >300 (since 2012)
Only for Nurse Anesthesia
Essay Required Required Required
Required Required Required
Interview Required Required Required
nursing license
For applicants who are RNs Required RN license
Required advanced practice nursing license
Required RN license minimum for RNFA

The College of Nursing  admits students to the educational programs once per year with the exception of the BSN Program which admits registered nurses (RN) to the RN-BSN concentration twice yearly, in the Fall and Spring. Application deadlines are posted on the College of Nursing website:

Previous Enrollment in another Nursing Program
Applicants to a College of Nursing  program who have attended, but not completed another nursing program, must provide a letter from the Dean/Director of the nursing program they previously attended. This letter must include a statement indicating that the student was in good academic standing when the student left the program and that the student is eligible to return to that program. Individuals dismissed from other nursing programs are not eligible for admission to UTHSC College of Nursing .

In-State Residency Determination and Academic Common Market

Guidelines used to classify applicants as in-state or out-of-state for purposes of admission and tuition are available online via Additional questions regarding residency should be addressed to the UTHSC Assistant Director of Enrollment Services, Suite 525, 910 Madison Avenue, Memphis, TN 38163, (901) 448-5560.

The Academic Common Market is a tuition-savings program for college students in the 16 Southern Region Educational Board states who want to pursue degrees that are not offered by their in-state institutions. Students can enroll in out-of-state institutions that offer their degree program and pay the institution’s in-state tuition rates. Each state and university decides whether to participate in the Academic Common Market and determines which educational programs will be eligible for the Academic Common Market. The UTHSC participates in the Academic Common Market for the DNP Program. Access information about the Academic Common Market at:

Technical and Performance Standards

The Admissions Committee maintains that certain minimal technical requirements and performance standards must be met for acceptance and progression in the College of Nursing   programs. Candidates for practice in entry level degree programs and graduate programs must have the following essential skills: gross and fine motor; sensory/observational; intellectual; integrative; computer literacy; communication; social/behavioral; and professionalism. Applicants to the DNP programs receive copies of the technical and performance standards relevant to their programs at the time of interview. Applicants to the BSN program receive a copy of the BSN program’s technical and performance standards when they are offered admission to the program. Applicants for all programs offered in the College of Nursing   verify in writing that they are able to meet these technical and performance standards with or without accommodation and are instructed to contact the Student Academic Support Services Office, GEB, room BB9, for questions and assistance. Determination of eligibility and recommendations of accommodations must be made by Student Academic Support Services and Inclusion Specific technical and performance standards for each program are listed under the specific program in this bulletin.

Background Check and Drug Screening

All newly accepted students must have an approved Criminal Background Check prior to matriculation at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Once accepted, applicants will receive information as to how to apply for the criminal background check. Adverse findings on a criminal background check may lead to a withdrawal of the offer of admission or denial of access to a clinical training site. The UTHSC Policy on Criminal Background Checks for Matriculating Students may be found in the student handbook (CenterScope,, or at Students must also complete a drug screening prior to matriculation. Students should disclose any previous felony or misdemeanor conviction to the program director prior to program enrollment and report any new convictions that occur while a student in the program. Yearly background checks and drug screens are required. These may be repeated during the student’s program of study for cause, random screenings, or clinical agency requirements. Clinical sites, licensing boards, and certification committees may require additional criminal background checks along with drug screenings and fingerprinting. Students are responsible for these costs. Information discovered in background searches may delay or prevent enrollment, clinical education opportunities, graduation, or licensure.

Immunizations and Medical Clearance

Prior to matriculation, students must receive required immunizations and medical clearance to meet technical and performance standards. Clinical agencies may require students receive additional immunizations or screenings during the program. The cost for these immunizations or screenings is the responsibility of the student.

Licenses and Certifications

Students must provide evidence of current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certification according to standards of the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross. Additionally, registered nurses accepted as students in any of the educational programs must have an unencumbered nursing license with authority to practice in TN and maintain an unencumber registered nurse license for the duration of their program. Individuals admitted to the certificate programs must have and maintain an unencumbered advanced practice nursing license with authority to practice in TN.

Student Health and Professional Liability Insurance

All nursing students are required to have healthcare and medical insurance while enrolled in the College. Clinical agencies that provide clinical experiential learning opportunities for the College of Nursing  students require professional liability insurance. Therefore, College of Nursing  students will be automatically be assessed a yearly fee to cover liability insurance. Students who are practicing nurses and have their own liability insurance are still required to purchase student professional liability insurance through the University.

Student Status

Students are expected to remain continuously enrolled in their program. The BSN  program offers a full-time and part-time option for licensed RNs. There is only a full-time option for non-nurses who enroll in the BSN program. The DNP Program has full-time plans of study for all concentrations. Select concentrations have structured part-time plans of study available. Consult with the program director and DNP concentration coordinators to determine if part-time study is a possibility. Certificate programs have a structured full-time plan of study.

Undergraduate students who are enrolled in 12 hours or more are classified as full-time. Student who are enrolled in less than 12 hours are classified as part time. Graduate students who are enrolled in 9 hours or more are classified as full-time. Students who are enrolled in less than 9 hours are classified as part time.