Skip to Main Content

Master of Science in Nursing

Graduate Programs


group of people posing with posters in background

Admission Requirements

Our application and admission process is committed to evaluating applications holistically based on a student’s ability to successfully undertake the rigors of graduate study and contribute meaningfully to our classroom conversations and academic community. 

Students who wish to apply to the MSN program must meet the following admission requirements:

  • A Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from a U.S. college or university.
    • Applicants for the post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist certificate have received a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in nursing or related to nursing as outlined by the Board of Registered Nursing for Clinical Nurse Specialist certification.
  • Possess a minimum of a 3.0 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale. If your GPA does not meet this minimum, and feel that your GPA is not an indicator of your potential to succeed in our program, we still encourage you to submit an application and provide a brief statement explaining the circumstances that affected your GPA. This statement can be included as part of the online application.
  • A valid and clear, current Registered Nurse license issued by the California Board of Registered Nursing to practice in the state of California.
  • One year of full-time clinical work experience as a Registered Nurse within the last 5 years. An RN who does not meet the clinical experience requirement may be considered if she/he has started employment relevant to the desired track.
  • Have completed a course in Statistics with a minimum grade of B or research as a prerequisite to NUR 290 (not applicable to post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist certificate).

Specialty Track Admission Requirements

  • Leadership/Administration track applicants must have completed a minimum of one (1) year full-time continuous employment as a licensed Registered Nurse within the last five (5) years.
  • Educator track applicants must be able to meet minimum qualifications to be approved as a Clinical Teaching Assistant per California Board of Registered Nursing regulations, Title 16 CCR Section1425(e): A clinical teaching assistant shall have at least one (1) year continuous, full-time or its equivalent experience in the designated nursing area within the previous five (5) years as a registered nurse providing direct patient care. The MSN admission policy requires that the above experience occur within the United States.
  • Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist and post-MSN Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate track applicants must have completed a minimum of one (1) year full-time continuous clinical experience in a setting caring for adults as a licensed Registered Nurse in the United States within the last five (5) years.*  Clinical experience needs to include some time in an acute care setting.

Application Requirements


The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is NOT required.

For Questions or Assistance

For questions or assistance related to the graduate application process, please contact the Graduate Admission Office at 213.477.2800 or via email: You can also contact Dr. Madeleine Bruning, Interim Academic Program Director, at

*The Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist track in the MSN program conforms to the California Board of Registered Nursing’s  requirements for California Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) Certification. For students who wish to practice in a state other than California, you may or may not have additional requirements you must complete prior to applying for your license. Mount Saint Mary’s University is in the process of researching program professional licensure standards in other states. Please contact the Director of the MSN program at or 213.477.2723 to discuss additional requirements that may be needed to obtain CNS certification in a state outside of California.