Nurse Anesthesia

Admission Requirements for DNP Program

Note: The USF College of Nursing is transitioning from the master's program (no longer admitting) to the DNP program (now admitting for summer 2019).
Admission is limited and very competitive. The number of applicants surpasses the number of admission seats. The application for summer 2019 admission opens on March 15, 2018, with a priority deadline of Aug. 15, 2018. The priority deadline indicates the earliest date when the college will begin accepting students.

After Aug. 15, 2018, applications to the program will be accepted on a space-available basis until Feb. 15, 2019. All application items must be completed and submitted for the application to be considered for admission. Priority admission will be limited to those meeting the Aug. 15 deadline.

Applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered for admission to the program:

  • Bachelor of Science in nursing degree from a regionally accredited program
  • Completion of required undergraduate coursework: Pathophysiology (3 credits), Pharmacology (3 credits), Anatomy and Physiology (6 credits), Health Assessment (3 credits), Chemistry (3 credits), Statistics (3 credits) – with a grade of B or better (If prerequisite science coursework is more than 10 years old, repeating or supplementing with a refresher course at the undergraduate level is highly recommended.
  • Earned grade point average of 3.00 or higher on a 4.00 scale in all work attempted while registered as an upper division applicant working on a baccalaureate degree
  • Competitive score (performance score at or above the 50th percentile on each of the three sub tests) on Graduate Record Examination (GRE), taken within five years of application. 
  • Current license as a registered nurse  
  • Personal statement of goals
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae
  • Minimum of two current years of experience as an RN in an aggressive adult and/or pediatric Intensive Care Unit (ICU) must be completed prior to matriculation into the program
  • Current Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) certifications
  • Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN) certification (highly recommended)*
  • Maintenance of current Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certifications while in program
  • A personal interview with the CRNA program panel
  • Statement of good physical, mental and emotional health to be verbally provided during interview
  • Three letters of recommendation, attesting to academic ability, clinical competence, and commitment (required from each of the following):
    1. CRNA or Anesthesiologist
    2. Current Nursing Supervisor
    3. Nursing Professor

International Applicants

International students whose native language is not English must demonstrate proficiency in the English language. A Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) composite score of 550 for the paper test or 213 for the computer‐based test is strongly recommended for admission to the graduate program.

Applicants who do not meet these requirements may petition the Student Affairs Committee for consideration for admission.

*“A critical care area is defined as one where, on a routine basis, the registered professional nurse manages one or more of the following: invasive hemodynamic monitors (such as pulmonary artery catheter, CVP, arterial); cardiac assist devices; mechanical ventilation; and vasoactive infusions. Examples of critical care units may include but are not limited to: Surgical Intensive Care, Cardiothoracic Intensive care, Coronary Intensive Care, Medical Intensive Care, Pediatric Intensive Care, and Neonatal Intensive Care. Those who have experiences in other areas may be considered provided they can demonstrate competence with managing unstable patients, invasive monitoring, ventilators, and critical care pharmacology." ‐ Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs


Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission. Acceptance into the program will be reserved for the best-qualified applicants who fulfill all admission requirements.

Individuals with a documented history of substance abuse:

The anesthesia profession is recognized as having one of the highest rates of substance abuse among all health care professions. As a result of this, persons who have a history of substance abuse are strongly urged to seek professional growth in a direction other than nurse anesthesia. If you have a history of substance abuse, are in or have completed a recovery or treatment program, we strongly urge you to consider the serious personal risks involved in entering the anesthesia profession. We suggest you consult your counselor, therapist or other health care professional for guidance, and strongly urge you to consider an alternative professional pathway within the nursing profession.

We acknowledge that substance abuse is an accepted disease and, as such, individuals with a history of substance abuse who wish to pursue a degree in nurse anesthesia may do so in accordance with the guidelines set forth. All students must perform in accordance with accepted professional behavior standards and ethical codes of conduct at all times. Violations of these principles and guidelines are grounds for immediate dismissal without the right of appeal.

The College of Nursing reserves the right to recommend the withdrawal or dismissal of any student whose health, conduct, academic or clinical performance is below the standards of the College of Nursing's Nurse Anesthesia program.

For More Information

The College of Nursing offers prospective students a number of ways to obtain more information about our programs:
All information contained is for informational purposes only and is superseded by the catalog for your intended term of entry.