Frequently Asked Questions

What are the average GPA and GRE scores for admitted students for the ELMSN pathway?

Average Cum. GPA: 3.4-3.6
Average Prerequisite GPA: 3.5-4.0
Average GREs:
Verbal: 158 (152-165)
Quant: 153 (146-161)
Writing: 4.5 (3.5-5.5)

What are the grade and timeline requirements for the prerequisite courses?

Minimum grade of 3.0/‘B’ in each course:
Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II (2 courses with labs)
Microbiology (with lab),Developmental Psychology – Lifespan
Introductory Statistics (should include inferential statistics)
Please note:
All science courses require on-site labs
All science courses must have been completed within the last 6 years

How can I find out if my coursework can fulfill nursing prerequisite requirements?

In State:
If you completed coursework at a Washington university or community college, download the Comparable Course Guide to see which courses can fulfill nursing prerequisite course requirements. If your courses are not listed on the guide, contact the School of Nursing at gradnurs@plu.edu.

Out of State:
If you completed coursework at an out-of-state college that you believe covers a prerequisite requirement, you must submit course descriptions from the college catalog for each applicable course. If possible, please send the course descriptions prior to the application deadline directly to us at:
gradnurs@plu.edu, or mail to Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Avenue S., Tacoma, WA 98447, Attn: School of Nursing Graduate Application. Otherwise, attach copies of any applicable course descriptions with your application materials.

Is prior healthcare experience required for the ELMSN program?

No. Prior work or volunteer experience in health care is not required for admission.

Can I apply to both the basic BSN and Entry-Level MSN programs?

Yes. Submit the entire application and required forms for each application. Only transcripts and the background check form and fee can be used for both application processes.

I do not meet one (or more) of the minimum requirements; will my application be considered?

Yes. Each application is evaluated and reviewed. Additional information may be supplied. Strength in other areas is considered when an item is slightly below minimum criteria.

How many students are admitted each year for the ELMSN pathway?

About 20 students admitted per year.

How many applications do you receive for the ELMSN pathway?

80-120 applications have been received each year since 2003

What is the admission process after I submit the application?

  1. PLU Graduate Admission office collects all application materials as they arrive from NursingCAS.
  2. Once all items are received and application is complete, the file is sent to School of Nursing for review.
  3. The School of Nursing Recruitment, Admission and Progression (RAP) Committee reviews all applications and makes recommendations for admission, waitlist, or denial for each application.
  4. All applications that completed by the December 1 priority deadline are reviewed as a single group; any applications completed after the deadline are considered later. Offers of admission/waitlist may be given, on a space available basis, through late May.
  5. Students admitted to the waitlist may be offered admission as late as June, if a space becomes available. The School of Nursing regularly contacts waitlisted applicants with the status of the admission process.
  6. Any applicant who does not begin the program in one academic year must submit a new application to be considered for admission in any following academic year. This applies to applicants who:
    • decline an offer of admission to the program
    • decline an offer of placement to the waitlist
    • are not moved from the waitlist to placement in the program
    • are denied admission to the program

Do you use a Wait List?

Yes. A limited number of qualified applicants are placed on a wait list.

Can MSN students apply to the DNP program?

Yes. ELM students can apply to DNP program in the fall of the second year of the program.

*Students must finish MSN coursework prior to beginning DNP.

What can I do with a concentration as a …

Care & Outcomes Manager:
Clinical Nurse Specialist – focus on a wide range of populations/diseases, including Community Health, Gerontology, Pediatrics, Medical/Surgical, etc.
Clinical Nurse Educator – teach the next generation of nurses in technical schools, community colleges and universities
Clinical Nurse Leader – a newer role for advanced practice nurses, the CNL “oversees the care coordination of a distinct group of patients and actively provides direct patient care in complex situations” (AACN).

Family Nurse Practitioner:

Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) in a Family Practice setting, in small private clinics or within a hospital system.
Employment in NP specialty areas (Acute Care, Pediatrics, Women’s Health, etc.) possible through continuing education, clinical experience and/or post-master’s certifications.

For general information about nursing education and careers, see: http://www.allnursingschools.com/faqs/