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Admission Process

General requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy degree are set forth in the University of New Mexico catalog. Specific requirements for the College of Nursing’s PhD program are:

  • A Master of Science in Nursing degree (MSN) from an accredited nursing program (National League for Nursing or Commission on Credentialing of Nursing Education through the American Association of Colleges of Nursing accreditation). Students with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and a master’s degree in another field will be considered on an individual basis.
  • A grade-point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Preference will be given to students with a grade-point average of 3.5 or higher.
  • Three letters of recommendation from persons who know the applicant professionally and can attest to his/her academic ability. 
  •  Submission of a writing sample that demonstrates evidence of scholarly ability and the potential for scholarly growth. Examples include, but are not limited to, a thesis, a published or unpublished scholarly paper, or written creative work.
  • A one-page statement of the applicant’s experiences in the discipline of nursing, which highlights experiences with underserved or vulnerable populations.
  • A letter of intent that addresses individual, professional, and personal goals.
  •  A brief two-to-three page resume that summarizes educational and professional background.
  • A graduate-level statistics course completed within 3 years of the date of admission is desirable, although not required.
  •  After initial screening, a select group of priority candidates will be interviewed.
  •  A valid RN license in any U.S. state, territory, or foreign country.

BSN Entry to the PhD Program

To be considered for the BSN entry to the PhD program, the applicant must have earned the BSN degree prior to the start of classes for the PhD program and be licensed as a registered nurse within the first semester of admission to the PhD program. Students admitted to the PhD program will complete 9 credits of MSN core 34 (501, 503, 505), and an additional 9 credits of graduate coursework focused on substantive nursing content and teaching. These 18 credits of bridge coursework are distinct from the credits required for the PhD, making 69 total coursework credits under the BSN to PhD option. The dissertation requirement remains the same at 18 credits (per UNM requirements).