MSN Admissions Requirements

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) curriculum is designed to prepare students as practitioners with selected specialties and evidence-based practice. Nurses in advanced practice are health care professionals committed to the delivery and study of high-quality clinical service. The program of study at YSN is viewed as preparation for a variety of leadership roles that will help shape the health care system of the future.

MSN students at Yale who enter as an RN move directly into a chosen area of clinical specialization with a curriculum that places emphasis on clinical competence and nursing scholarship. Each student is educated to excel in an expanded role in the specialty area of his or her choice. Employers recognize the superior preparation that YSN graduates receive and actively seek to recruit them.

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MSN Application Requirements

Online Application
Current Resume/Curriculum Vitae
Three References (academic, professional, or clinical)
GRE scores 
TOEFL or IELTS scores (required of all non-native English speakers)
Essay (400-600 words)
Two short answer essays (150-300 words per question) 


Please address the following four questions in an integrated and comprehensive essay. Applicants will be evaluated on their ability to compose a well-written and well-organized essay as well as on the substance, thoughtfulness, and clarity of their responses:

  1. Why do you wish to pursue a career in advanced practice nursing?
    Please expound upon: (a) your initial decision to pursue nursing rather than another profession; (b) your choice to pursue a career as an advanced practice nurse rather than continuing to work as an RN; (c) your specific interest in the clinical specialty to which your are applying.

  2. What is your understanding of the role of an advanced practice nurse?
    Please consider: (a) observations from your career in nursing thus far, and your own work experiences with advanced practice nurses and other health care professions; (b) issues related to health systems, illness and/or crisis situations. How have experiences and perspectives informed and influenced your decision to further your nursing education in a graduate program?

  3. What factors have influenced your decision?
     Please describe any significant life experiences that have contributed to your self-understanding and development, with respect to your interest in advanced practice nursing. You may discuss, for example, how academic and professional experiences, cross-cultural engagement, or volunteer roles and service projects have shaped your career aspirations and ambitions

  4. How would attending the Yale School of Nursing help you pursue your aspirations? 
    Please articulate how specific aspects of the program, curriculum, faculty, or any other of the Yale School of Nursing’s resources or characteristics, will empower you to achieve your goals in the nursing profession.

Short Answer 

  1. Please identify one of your greatest strengths, and how it will relate to your experience as a Yale student and a future advanced practice nurse.
  2. Yale School of Nursing’s mission is “better health for all people” and our values center around social justice and health equities. Write about a situation that tested your ethics or was a conflict of interest and how you dealt with it.