Application Instructions

Important! Each applicant is required to complete two applications:

  1. Online application to SDSU Graduate School and
  2. Application to SDSU graduate nursing program via NursingCAS. The application for fall 2021 program start will open in September. Continue to monitor this page for updates. Please contact our assistant director of nursing student services with questions.

Graduate School Application

Applicants must complete the SDSU Graduate School application. It is an online application, and it does not require transcripts or letters of recommendation. To initiate this process, go to the Graduate School webpage, select the semester that you intend to start and complete the application.

Graduate Nursing Program Application

The application for fall 2021 program start will open in September. Continue to monitor this page for updates. Please contact our assistant director of nursing student services with questions. When it becomes available, the graduate nursing program application must be completed online via NursingCAS. Here are some helpful tips before starting your application:

  • Keep these instructions available when completing your NursingCAS application. These instructions will be helpful in order to not to miss a step or miss submitting required information.
  • Follow the guidelines for the SDSU requirements and note that your application will not be considered until ALL elements listed below are completed, submitted and verified through NursingCAS.

Initiate Your Application

When the application becomes available in September, you will be able to initiate your application through NursingCAS by doing the following:

  1. Visit www.NursingCAS.org
  2. Click Apply Now.
  3. Click on Create an Account and begin completing the required fields to start your application. If you have already created an account in previous application cycles, you can click on the Application Login at the top of the page.

Application Sections

Each section will ask for multiple pieces of applicant information; please follow the directions below carefully for the SDSU requirements. Although some sections of the NursingCAS application are marked “optional," you must complete each section required by SDSU, or the application will not allow you to submit it.

Personal Information Section

You will need to complete all seven areas of the personal information section.

  1. Release Statement
  2. Biographic Information
  3. Contact Information
  4. Citizenship Information
  5. Family Information
  6. Race and Ethnicity
  7. Other Information (all items are required, EXCEPT for social security number)
Academic History Section

You will need to complete two or three of the academic history areas. Transcript entry is NOT required.

  1. High School(s) Attended
  2. College(s) Attended: Applicants are required to enter information on ALL institutions that they enrolled in college/university level coursework. Missing information will result in delay in the verification of the application by NursingCAS.
    1. All official transcripts must be mailed or electronically submitted from the issuing institution’s registrar’s office DIRECTLY to NursingCAS.
    2. See the NursingCAS applicant help center page for the link to the instructions for electronic submission.
    3. You can request these electronically from Credential Solutions, the National Student Clearinghouse, Parchment or by mail. See the sending official transcripts to NursingCAS page for more information.
    4. Instruct the institution to include the transcript request form when mailing the transcript to NursingCAS.
    5. Applicants who have completed or are in process of completing their degree from a South Dakota Regental Institution are also required to have current official transcripts sent to NursingCAS (no exceptions). Follow your institution's instructions for requesting transcripts.
  3. Standardized Tests(required if applicable): This section is only required if applicant meets ESL (English as a Second Language) definition. OFFICIAL Scores should be sent directly to SDSU as well as uploaded to NursingCAS in the documents section. Refer to program materials section: Documents.
Supporting Information Section

You will need to complete the following areas of the supporting information section:

  1. Experiences: In addition, applicants will be required to have their recent/past employers complete the professional employment verification form. This form MUST be uploaded with the NursingCAS application. Refer to program materials section: Documents.
  2. Achievements (this is optional)
Program Materials Section

You will need to complete up to nine of the program material areas.

  1. Documents: PDF documents can be filled in electronically but should be printed and then scanned and uploaded to NursingCAS. If documents are uploaded 'blank' and without information, applications will be considered incomplete. Check document BEFORE you upload to NursingCAS. 
  2. Personal Statement (required for Ph.D. applicants only): All Ph.D. applicants are required to complete the linked personal statement DocuSign PowerForm.
  3. Statistics Course Information (required for M.S, Ph.D and DNP applicants): All M.S, Ph.D and DNP applicants are required to complete the linked statistics course information DocuSign PowerForm.
  4. TOEFL or IELTS (required for applicants who meet the definition of English as a Second Language): The College of Nursing requires all students who meet the definition of English as a Second Language attain the required TOEFL or IELTS score (regardless of residency status). English as a Second Language is defined as a student who was instructed and spoke primarily in a language other than English in the K-12 grades or primary and secondary schooling. OFFICIAL scores must be sent directly to SDSU and uploaded to NursingCAS (under the 'test score report' documents section). Test must have been completed within 2 years of application to the program. Score requirements are:
    1. TOEFL 81 Internet-based score or
    2. IELTS score of 6.5 total band.
  5. Licensure and Certifications: Applicants are required to upload current licensure and certification documents with the NursingCAS application. The NursingCAS system allows upload of one (1) license. If you have more than 1 license, please email the additional licenses to Assistant Director of Nursing Student Services Anna Atteberry-Gustafson. License requirements:
    1. All applicants must submit an RN license.
    2. APRNs only must submit active APRN certification.
  6. Experiences/Employment: A minimum of 1500 hours of experience as a registered nurse is required for unconditional admission. New graduates may be eligible for conditional admission. Contact Assistant Director of Nursing Student Services Anna Atteberry-Gustafson for more information. In addition, applicants will be required to have their recent/past employers complete the professional employment verification form. This form MUST be uploaded with the NursingCAS application (upload under 'other' documents).
  7. Supplemental Legal Questions:All applicants are required to complete the supplemental legal questions DocuSign PowerForm. Applicants who answered “yes” to any of the legal questions on the form must submit the following through NursingCAS. These items must be uploaded with the NursingCAS application (upload under 'other' documents):
    1. Copies of charges or citations,
    2. ALL communications with (to and from) the citing agency, and
    3. The court of jurisdiction, including evidence of completion/compliance with court requirements. 
  8. Example of Scholarly Work (required for Ph.D. applicants only): Ph.D. applicants are required to upload an example(s) of scholarly written work with the NursingCAS application. These must be uploaded under the 'research/publication' documents area (minimum of 1 example).
  9. Resume'/CV
Questions

You will need to complete the required questions.

  1. Multiple Area Topic Questions

Application Submission

Your application in NursingCAS will not be considered until ALL elements listed above are completed and submitted. In progress/incomplete/non-verified applications will not be considered. Applications are considered COMPLETE if they are listed in the NursingCAS system as follows:

  • Complete - this designation is assigned to applications in which all required documents have been received.
  • Verified –  this designation applies to applications that all required information has been received and verified by NursingCAS. ALL applications MUST be designated as VERIFIED by NursingCAS to be considered for admission.

Time Frame for Review of Application

It will take a minimum of 2 weeks for NursingCAS to review a complete application and move it to the verified status. If any items are missing, the application will be delayed. Therefore, you should ensure that your transcripts are received by NursingCAS as soon as possible.

Special Instructions for Postgraduate Certificate Applicants

All postgraduate certificate applicants are required to have completed (prior to program start) graduate level courses (as listed below) with a course grade of 3.0 or higher within the last 5 years:

  • Advanced physical assessment (lifespan),
  • Advanced pathophysiology (lifespan) and
  • Advanced pharmacology/pharmacotherapeutics (lifespan).

You will need to send the transcript(s) for each of the courses listed to Assistant Director of Nursing Student Services Anna Atteberry-Gustafson so that it can be evaluated prior to your application review.

Assistance: For help with NursingCAS contact the NursingCAS Applicant Help Center. For questions specific to the SDSU graduate nursing program, please contact Assistant Director of Nursing Student Services Anna Atteberry-Gustafson.