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Apply to the Master of Science in Nursing Program

The application deadline for the Master's Nurse Administrator, Nurse Educator, Master's Family Nurse Practitioner (Brookings) and Clinical Nurse Leader options has been extended to July 15, 2020. If interested, please review the application instructions below and submit the application by the due date.  Thank you.

Admission and eligibility requirements



When required

Completion of a baccalaureate degree in nursing from a CCNE or NLNAC accredited* program.

*Program accreditation must have been obtained prior to completion of degree.



Minimum cumulative GPA: 3.0 on a 4.0 scale



Completion of an approved statistics course (containing both descriptive and inferential statistics) within 5 years of enrollment in SDSU course: NURS 626 – Research in Nursing & Healthcare.


Prior to end of first semester of graduate nursing coursework

1500 hours of documented RN practice experience prior to first clinical lab or within first year of program.


Prior to first clinical lab or within first year of program

Letter to the SDState Department of Graduate Nursing from the dean/director of applicant's former/current program that includes applicant's current standing and/or standing upon exit.*

For applicants who have begun but not completed a graduate nursing program at another college or university.


Current licensure as a registered nurse in the United States of America or its’ territories prior to enrollment in first graduate nursing course



Online interview


Following application review for applicants who meet criteria only

Online written assessmentALLFollowing application review for applicants who meet criteria only

Coverage by non-employer sponsored registered nurse liability insurance (1 million / 5 million).



Additional specialty coverage, e.g. nurse practitioner student coverage.

Family nurse practitioner


Basic life supportALLAdmission
Advanced cardiac life supportFamily nurse practitionerAdmission

Background check / FBI rolled fingerprints

Note: Admission to a program is conditional based on the results of the background check.


Admission and also annual background check

Drug screen

Note: Admission to a program is conditional based on the results of the drug screen.



Required immunizations

Note: Admission to a program is conditional based on completion of the required immunizations.


Admission and annually for specific immunizations

For applicants with English as a second language, one the following tests for English proficiency must be completed within two years preceding the requested semester of admission: 

  • TOEFL of 600 paper-based, 250 computer-based or 100 Internet-based score, or
  • IELTS score of 7.0 total band.



Application requirements

Each applicant is required to complete two applications:

  • (1) Application to the SDSU graduate nursing program, and

  • (1) Application to the SDSU Graduate School.

You will complete the SDSU graduate nursing application via NursingCAS (online application service). View the fall 2020 application instructions for complete details

To complete the SDSU Graduate School application (online application), please follow the Graduate School's instructions for completing their application. Please note, this application does not require transcripts or letters of recommendation.

In addition, the following documents are to be completed and uploaded to your NursingCAS document (following instructions regarding what area the documents are to be uploaded in your application).

  1. Legal questions supplemental form,
  2. Statistics form and
  3. Verification of employment

The deadlines for complete applications are listed below. In progress, incomplete or 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.





Interview required

Master of Science in Nursing

  • Nurse administrator
  • Clinical nurse leader
  • Nurse educator

July 15, 2020


Master of Science in Nursing

Brookings and Sioux Falls

  • Family nurse practitioner
July 15, 2020


Master of Science in Nursing

Rapid City

  • Family nurse practitioner

Following review of the applications, eligible applicants will be invited to participate in an online interview and online written assessment.

Applicants who are offered admission to the program will be required to:


Due to regulations in certain states, South Dakota State University College of Nursing is unable to accept applicants from several identified states as noted on the following link: South Dakota State University Department of Continuing & Distance Education - state authorization information

If you are a current resident of a state identified on the above listed Internet link, we regret that we are unable to consider your application for admission.

If you do not currently reside in one of the identified states and are offered and accept admission, please note that should you relocate to one of the identified states while in the program, you may not be able to complete the program.

In addition, there may be rules and regulations required by the South Dakota Board of Nursing and/or other state boards of nursing that may not provide the opportunity for out-of-state applicants to be admitted to the RN to B.S.N., RN to M.S.N., RN to DNP or and of the graduate nursing programs.

If you have questions concerning this, please contact the Anna Atteberry-Gustafson, assistant director of nursing student services.