Admission Requirements

See what you need to qualify for our nursing programs at Lewis University.

BSN Requirements
RN/BSN Admission Requirements
Healthcare Leadership Requirements
Bachelor's to BSN Requirements
MSN/MBA Requirements
Nursing/MSN Requirements
School Nurse Requirements
Nursing/DNP Requirements

BSN Requirements:
Requirements For Applicants As Freshman Students
  1. Applicants must have graduated from an approved high school with a combination of grade point average, class rank, and ACT or SAT score which indicates a strong likelihood of success in university studies.

  2. Applicants must have accumulated 18 high school units. Three of those units should be in English; the remaining 15 units should be chosen from a college preparatory curriculum.

  3. Applicants for admission must complete an Admission Application and have their high schools forward an official student transcript. Students must have their ACT or SAT scores sent to the Office of Admission. Veterans must submit a DD214.
Additional Requirements for Nursing Students
  1. First-year applicants to the nursing program are strongly advised to have completed one year of high school chemistry and two years of high school mathematics, with a grade of "C" or above in each class.

  2. First-year applicants who plan to major in nursing should contact the Office of Admission for the current minimum ACT composite score.

  3. Applicants must successfully complete the Kaplan Admission Test (KAT). Please contact admissions for current passing scores. Passing scores are determined by the nursing faculty each year. Admission, progression, curriculum, and graduation policies of the pre-licensure track are subject to change in order to comply with the requirements of the current Illinois Nursing and Advanced Practice Nursing Act, Rules for the Administration of Nursing and Advanced Practice Nursing Act, and The Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2008).

  4. Students must receive a grade of "C" in required science courses to progress to the next semester in the program. Students who receive only one failing grade in a science (C-, D, F, or W), will be allowed to repeat that course once. Science theory and science labs are counted as separate classes. Upon a second failed science, or if the student fails or withdraws from both theory and lab during the semester, the student will be notified that they have been academically dismissed from the nursing major. A student may repeat a required general education support course in which they earn a "C-", "D", "F", or "W" only once and if the student does not earn a minimum of a "C" on the second attempt they will be academically dismissed from the nursing major. Dismissal from the College of Nursing and Health Professions does not necessarily result in dismissal from the University.

  5. Prior to entering clinical courses, every pre-licensure College of Nursing and Health Professions student must complete a disclosure form, similar to the disclosure required by the Illinois Department of Finance and Professional Regulations in the application for licensure as an RN and meet requirements of clinical agency.

  6. Every pre-licensure nursing student must have completed a physical examination form and received the required immunizations. Yearly drug screenings, background checks, and flu shots must be completed every consecutive fall semester and prior to entering Sophomore II clinical courses.

  7. Every College of Nursing and Health Professions student is subject to the college's Chemical Impairment Policy.
Requirements for Entering Transfer Students

A transfer student applicant (traditional programs) is defined as a degree-seeking student who has earned a minimum of 12 semester (18 quarter) hours of transferable credit at a regionally accredited post-secondary institution. Transfer student applicants need to have earned a minimum 2.75 cumulative transfer grade point average based upon all transferable courses to be considered for admission. (Transfer students are not required to submit ACT or SAT scores or high school transcript.) Credits earned through Prior Learning Assessment cannot be used to meet the minimum credit hour requirement for admission.

Official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended must be sent to the Office of Admission. Students must be in good academic, disciplinary and financial standings at previous colleges/universities attended. An evaluation of transfer credit will be forwarded with the acceptance letter showing courses accepted in transfer and courses/hours that still need to be completed at Lewis.

The Office of Admission will consider applications only after the following steps have been completed:
  1. An application is submitted.
  2. Official transcripts are received by the Office of Admission from each college and/or university attended.
  3. Kaplan Admission Test results are submitted (for nursing majors only).
RN/BSN Admission Requirements:
  • You must be currently licensed as a Registered Professional Nurse in Illinois. 
  • You must have graduated from a state-approved nursing program, such as a diploma program, associate degree program or foreign nursing program. Up to 72 semester hours can be transferred from a community college.  
  • You must have earned a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5.
  • You must submit an application and official transcripts from all previous academic programs.
Healthcare Leadership Requirements:
  • You must be at least 24 years old.
  • You must have earned a minimum of 12 semester hours of transferable credit at a regionally accredited college or university, with a transfer GPA 2.0. 
  • You must have at least three years of full-time work experience.
Bachelor's to BSN Requirements:
  • You must have earned a bachelor's degree in any subject from a regionally accredited college or university, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75.
  • You must submit an application with non-refundable application fee. 
  • You must successfully complete the KAPLAN Admission Test (KAT).
  • After passing the KAT, you will be required to attend an information session.
MSN/MBA Program Requirements:
  • You must have graduated from a baccalaureate nursing program, accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Your curriculum should have included a three-semester credit hour course in statistics and a three-semester credit hour course in nursing research. If not, you will have to take these courses before or concurrent with your first graduate level nursing course. 

  • You must be currently licensed as a Registered Professional Nurse in your state of practice. 

  • You must have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on your undergraduate degree. 

  • You must submit a current resume or curriculum vitae, two completed recommendation forms, and official transcripts from all previous academic programs.

  • Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms: one reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying; the second should be from your current supervisor or manager.

  • Essay (500-600 words including introduction and conclusion) addressing (a) how your work experiences prepared you for graduate studies; (b) how graduate study will facilitate achievement of your short and long-term goals; and (c) how the Lewis University Mission integrates with your personal and professional identity.
Priority Deadlines
Application submission deadline for Fall enrollment is April 2.
Application submission deadline for Spring enrollment is October 1.

Nursing/MSN Requirements:

Admission to the graduate program leading to the Master of Science in Nursing is based on individual qualifications of the applicant without regard to race, color, religion, age, gender, national or ethic origin, or disability. In addition to meeting health and clinical requirements in the MSN program prior to enrollment in clinical/practicum courses, all incoming students born after January 1, 1957, taking six or more credit hours per semester on the Romeoville campus must have an updated immunization record sent to the Center for Health and Counseling Services. Requests for exceptions to any of the stated admission criteria must be submitted in writing to the Director of Graduate Studies, and will be considered on an individual basis. Applicants to the MSN/MBA dual degree program must meet admission requirements for both programs.

Priority Deadlines
Application submission deadline for Fall enrollment is April 2.
Application submission deadline for Spring enrollment is October 1.

Admission Criteria for Applicants to the Healthcare Systems Leadership and Nursing Education programs with a Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing:
  1. Graduation from a baccalaureate nursing program, accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), including successful completion of(a) a three-semester credit hour course in statistics and (b) a three-semester credit hour course in nursing research. If not, equivalent courses must be taken prior to or concurrent with the first graduate level nursing course.

  2. Current licensure as a Registered Professional Nurse in the state where the applicant resides.

  3. Minimum of 3.0 undergraduate cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 point scale). Official transcripts from all previous academic programs are required.

  4. Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms: one reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying; the second should be from your current supervisor or manager.

  5. A current resume or curriculum vitae.

  6. Essay (500-600 words including introduction and conclusion) addressing (a) how your work experiences prepared you for graduate studies; (b) how graduate study will facilitate achievement of your short and long-term goals; and (c) how the Lewis University Mission integrates with your personal and professional identity.
Admission Criteria for Applicants to the Healthcare Systems Leadership and Nursing Education programs with a Registered Nurse license and a Non-Nursing Baccalaureate Degree:
  1. Graduation from an accredited associate degree or diploma nursing program (NLNAC).

  2. Current licensure as a Registered Professional Nurse in the state where the applicant resides.

  3. Graduation from an accredited non-nursing baccalaureate degree program.

  4. Minimum of 3.0 undergraduate cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 scale) on all college work. Official transcripts are required.

  5. Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms: one reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying; the second should be from your current supervisor or manager.

  6. Successful completion of a three semester credit hour course in statistics, 30-306 Concepts of Professional Nursing, 30-432 Promoting Healthy Communities and a three semester credit hour course in undergraduate nursing research.

  7. Essay (500-600 words including introduction and conclusion) addressing (a) how your work experiences prepared you for graduate studies; (b) how graduate study will facilitate achievement of your short and long-term goals; and (c) how the Lewis University Mission integrates with your personal and professional identity.
Admission Criteria for Applicants to the Nurse Practitioner Program with a Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing:
  1. Graduation from a baccalaureate nursing program, accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), including successful completion of (a) a three-semester credit hour course in statistics, (b) a three-semester credit hour course in nursing research; (c) a three-semester credit hour course in pharmacology; (d) a 3 semester credit hour course in health assessment; and (e) courses in anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology. If not, equivalent courses must be taken prior to enrollment in the first graduate level nursing course.

  2. Current licensure as a Registered Professional Nurse in Illinois or state of practice.

  3. Minimum of 3.0 undergraduate cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 point scale). Official transcripts from all previous academic programs are required.

  4. Two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions' recommendation forms; one reference must be from a nurse with a master's degree or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying; the second should be from your current supervisor or manager.

  5. A current resume or curriculum vitae.

  6. Essay (maximum 500 words) addressing;
    • What skills and qualities do you bring to the Nurse Practitioner role?
    • What are the most important things you need to learn to be a successful Nurse Practitioner?
    • How does the Lewis University mission integrate with your personal and professional identity?

STUDENT-AT-LARGE
Any student who has applied for admission and meets admission requirements, but who has not yet completed the admission process, may register as a student-at-large with the permission of the Director of Graduate Studies. No more than six (6) semester credit hours taken as a student-at-large may be applied toward the degree. Enrollment as a student-at-large does not guarantee admission to the program. Students must meet all admission requirements by the last day of the semester of enrollment in their second course as a student-at-large or discontinue matriculation.

TRANSFER CREDIT AND GRADE POINT
A maximum of nine semester credits of graduate-level coursework from regionally accredited institutions may be accepted for transfer if the courses are applicable to the student's area of specialization as determined by the Director of Graduate Studies, or determined by course faculty to be equivalent to required courses. Only courses carrying a grade of B or above will be considered. Grades from courses accepted for transfer credit are not calculated into the cumulative grade point average.

ACADEMIC STANDING
A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.2 must be maintained in order for a student to remain in good standing. A minimum 3.2 cumulative grade point average is required for progression into the graduate practicum.

REQUIREMENTS
A minimum of 42 graduate semester credits is required for the Master of Science in Nursing degree. The curriculum for Healthcare Systems Leadership and Nursing Education students is accelerated and designed and implemented to meet the needs of the working adult learner. Nurse Practitioner specialization courses are offered in a traditional 16-week format.

TIME LIMIT FOR COMPLETION
Students must meet all requirements for the degree within a period of five consecutive years from the time of enrollment in graduate coursework upon admission to the program.

School Nurse Program:

Admission Criteria for Applicants to the School Nurse Program:

  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and must have earned licensure by the state of Illinois as a Registered Professional Nurse (RN).
  • Applicants with an RN licensure, but not holding a BSN or having a bachelor’s degree in a non-health area must complete a graduate level course in community health or population focused health in the last 10 years.
  • Applicants must have successfully taken and passed the Illinois State Board of Education Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) or have received a composite score of 22 or higher on the ACT test with the writing portion.
  • Applicants must submit two completed Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions’ recommendation forms: one reference must be from a nurse in the specialty of school nursing with a master’s degree or doctoral degree; the second should be from your current supervisor or manager.
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Essay (maximum 500 words) addressing (a) how your education and work experiences have prepared you for graduate studies; (b) how graduate study will facilitate achievement of your short and long term professional goals; and (c) how the Lewis University Mission integrates with your personal and professional identity.
  • Applicants must submit an official transcript with a GPA of 3.0 or above. (A GPA of 2.75-3.0 will be considered for provisional admission.)
Fingerprint Background Checks - Licensure from the Illinois State Board of Education may be denied for the presence of certain felonies on a candidate's criminal record. Candidates are encouraged to review the licensure requirements. (105 ILCS 5/21-23a) The College of Education maintains a relationship with a vendor for the convenience of candidates. Candidates will be given information during orientation and will complete the background check in advance of their first field experience. Candidates will be required to submit a hard copy to the Field Experience Coordinator. Candidates who have concerns about their past criminal record should seek counsel through the department or program chair. A second fingerprint check may be required by the school district(s) at the time of school nurse internship. Candidates will be required to incur the costs for all fingerprint background checks.

Nursing/DNP Requirements
The DNP is the terminal nursing practice degree. There are several entry points into the program. Click here to see admission requirements.