MSN: Frequently Asked Questions | College of Nursing | Kent State University

Frequently Asked Questions

Program Structure

Is your program online? Which courses are online?

Many concentrations are 100% online, while others are partially online. All core MSN courses are online (Theory, Methods, Informatics, Healthcare Policy, Health Assessment, Pharmacology, and Pathophysiology).

100% Online Concentrations

  • Adult-Gero Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Women’s Health NP
  • Nurse Educator
  • Nursing Administration & Health Systems Leadership
  • MSN/MBA Dual Degree

Partially Online Concentrations

  • Adult-Gero Acute Care NP
  • Adult-Gero Primary Care NP
  • Family NP
  • Pediatric NP
  • Psychiatric/Mental Health NP
How long does it take to complete the program?

Most students complete the program in 3 years.

Will I have to come to campus?

100% online students are not required to come to campus. Adult-Gero Primary Care NP, Adult-Gero Acute Care NP, Family NP, Pediatric Primary Care NP, and Psych Mental Health NP students do require attendance on campus. These students usually come to campus one day per week after they begin their practicum sequence (usually the second and third years of a 3​-year program).

Will I need to find my own preceptors?

Yes, it is primarily the student's responsibility to locate a preceptor. However, your concentration coordinator and faculty will work closely with you to help you secure a preceptor.

Do my preceptors need to be verified through Kent State?

Yes, students will submit important information about their potential preceptors and the concentration coordinator and/or faculty member will approve them. 

Can I complete this degree part-time? Can I work and go to school at the same time?

Yes! In fact, most students attend part-time (4-6 hours) and also work. However, your concentration may require at least one full-time semester (8 or more hours).

Can I complete my coursework at a Kent State regional campus?

No, the program is only offered at the Kent Campus.

Can I be enrolled in multiple concentrations?

No. Kent State does not permit “double majors” at the graduate level. However, students can apply to a post-master’s certificate program during their final year of their master’s program. Post-master’s certificate programs allow students to complete a second concentration without repeating duplicate coursework.

How do your online courses work? Will I be required to attend online lectures at a specific time, or can I complete the course on my own schedule?

Most online courses are asynchronous, meaning that you are not required to log in at a certain time. Some courses are synchronous and may require weekly or monthly scheduled online course meetings.


I do not live in Ohio. Can I complete this program in my state?

In many states, yes.

In order to be compliant with federal and state laws related to online education and consumer protection, as well as State professional licensure/certification regulations, Kent State University may not be able offer online programs to students residing in certain states. In addition, some state laws may impose limitations that could affect a program of study, including inability to offer clinical practicum courses. Since these regulations undergo continuous updates (1) non-Ohio residents interested in pursuing any College of Nursing online program are advised to consult with their State licensing/certification agency and official Kent State information on state authorization before applying to this program (2) any student that is planning to move or practice in a different state after having been admitted to either the RN BSN, MSN or DNP programs must immediately inform the Office of Student Services at 330-672-7911 to determine whether or not he/she can continue in the program.

View the approved list of states for online learning

Will I complete my practicum courses where I live?

Yes, you will be completing your practicum courses in the state in which you reside and in which you have a valid RN license.


Is work experience as an RN required?

No. However, years of registered nurse experience, professional experience relevant to the specific MSN concentration and evidence of scholarship and involvement in the nursing profession as indicated on the applicant's resume, along with GPA and intent for full-time study, will be considered in the selection process for applicants who meet all admission criteria.

I will be graduating with my BSN in the Spring. Can I begin this program in the Fall?

Some concentrations are able to admit students who are new BSN nurses. However, years of registered nurse experience, professional experience relevant to the specific MSN concentration and evidence of scholarship and involvement in the nursing profession as indicated on the applicant's resume, along with GPA and intent for full-time study, will be considered in the selection process for applicants who meet all admission criteria.

What are the admission requirements?

The admission requirements are:

  • An active, unrestricted registered nurse license in the state in which clinical coursework will be completed.
  • A bachelor's and/or graduate degree from an accredited registered nursing program (an RN license with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field will be considered based on review of a portfolio submitted with the application).
  • A minimum overall 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 point scale. Applicants with a lower GPA may be considered for conditional admission according to the University Graduate Admission Policy
  • Completion of an undergraduate statistics course with a minimum C grade.
  • A résumé or curriculum vita.
  • Completion of a two to three page admission essay describing reasons for seeking the master's degree in the identified specialty and demonstrating clarity of professional goals.
  • Three letters of reference from a health care professional or academic faculty who can speak to the applicant's professional and academic abilities.
  • English language proficiency - all international students must provide proof of English language proficiency (unless they meet specific exceptions) by earning one of the following:
    • Minimum 560 TOEFL PBT score (paper-based version)
    • Minimum 83 TOEFL IBT score (Internet-based version)
    • Minimum 78 MELAB score
    • Minimum 6.5 IELTS score
    • Minimum 55 PTE score
  • The MSN/MBA program requires applicants to complete the GMAT or GRE. Students selected for admission to the nursing program must meet the College of Nursing's Clinical Compliance Policy.
Do I need to take the GRE for admission?

Only if you are applying to the MSN-MBA Dual Degree program, which requires the GMAT or GRE.

If I have less than a 3.0 GPA, will you take my GRE score into consideration when I apply?

No, we do not consider GRE scores.

I am currently enrolled in an MSN program at another college/university. How can I transfer to Kent State?
I am an RN without a BSN. Can I be admitted to this program?

If you’re an RN, but don’t have a BSN, you may still be eligible if you have a bachelor’s degree in another field. Such applicants must complete a portfolio review. Once you have completed your application, contact Student Services at 330-672-7911 for more information.

My MSN is not in a clinical area. Can I still enroll in one of the APRN Post-master’s Certificate programs?

Applicants who have earned a master’s degree in nursing or a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from an accredited nursing program can apply to any of our post-master’s certificate programs.

Post-master's certificate admission criteria

Costs & Financial Aid

How much does the program cost?

Please see our Tuition & Costs page for generalized rates. Actual tuition costs may vary based on a student’s chosen academic plan. Detailed information regarding tuition and fees can be found in the University Fee Register.

What are my financial aid options?

Graduate students are eligible for federal loans. We also offer a limited number of scholarships and assistantships. Many students are able to take advantage of tuition assistance programs through their employers.

I am a veteran with the GI Bill. How do I use my benefits at Kent State?