Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Admission Requirements

Please read through the admissions requirements carefully, and review the Ready to Apply? page for more information. The application deadline is October 31, 2019 for spring 2020 entry.

Prior degree in Nursing

  • Graduate of an accredited college or university with a Master’s degree in nursing documented by an official transcript. Non-English transcripts must be translated into English by a certified translator, and then evaluated. Transcripts for completed degrees and/or coursework outside of the United States must be submitted for validation and evaluation before they may be considered for admission. 
  • Applicants who hold a BSN and Master’s degree in another health-related field will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis


  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.4 on a 4.0 scale verified by official transcripts.


No GRE required.

English proficiency for non-native English speakers as verified by one of the following:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) – minimum total score of 92 with a minimum score of 24 in both the speaking and writing sections. To report your scores, use UCSF institutional code 4840 and department code 43.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) – minimum score of 7 mailed to the Office of Student Affairs.
  • Note: test scores may take up to six weeks to reach the university.

Practice Experience

  • Evidence documenting completion of a minimum of 500 practice hours during the applicant’s master’s program or previous post-master’s study; APRN national certification in one of the recognized APRN roles will satisfy this requirement (i.e. Nurse Practitioner (NP), Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS), Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) or Nurse Midwife (CNM).

RN licensure

  • Active, unrestricted Registered Nurse (RN) licensure for practice in California.
  • Non-California applicants should review "Licensure by Endorsement / Reciprocity" rules from the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN).
  • Information regarding recognition of licensure in other states, or other matters related to licensure may be obtained from the BRN at the following address:
    Ca. Board of Registered Nursing
    P.O. Box 944210
    Sacramento, CA 94244-2100


College level statistics course completed within three years of the start of the program

Résumé or curriculum vitae

  • Resume or curriculum vitae should detail work history, professional, and volunteer activities appropriate to the advanced practice role.

Application fee (subject to change)

  • $90 for U.S. citizens and permanent residents and $110 for international applicants.
  • U.S. citizens and permanent residents who demonstrate financial need, or who would have significant difficulty in paying application fees, may be eligible for a fee waiver.


    • Three confidential letters of recommendation from colleagues who are able to address academic abilities, work-related experience, and leadership potential.
    • Letters in writing are preferred.

    Goal statement

    • Articulating personal and professional goals and how they relate to your area of specialization.

      The following are preferred qualifications:

      • Verification of APRN national certification in one of the recognized APRN roles (NP, CNS, CRNA or CNM).
      • One year of experience in advanced practice role.

      Please review our FAQs for more information. Ready to Apply?