Frequently Asked Questions - MSN and NP Programs

  1. Are Programs Offered Online?
  2. Programs are offered in multiple formats, including: 8-week accelerated, 16-week regular, online and evening classes at our site in Oak Brook.

    Seven fully equipped patient exam rooms in Oak Brook are utilized by nurses who are advancing their knowledge to become nurse practitioners and other advanced nursing experts. Acute care labs in Oak Brook are designed to simulate emergency room (ER) and critical care settings.

  3. What States Can I Live In/Practice In?
  4. Lewis University participates in the National Council for State Authorization and Reciprocity Agreements. NC-SARA is a voluntary, regional approach to state oversight of postsecondary distance education.

    If the online program that you are considering requires a professional license in your home state, we urge you to contact the appropriate licensing agency in your state for guidance before embarking on an academic program located outside of your state. The National Council of State Boards of Nursing offers a list of clinical and licensing requirements by state/territory.

    It is highly recommended that you speak with graduate admissions grad@lewisu.edu if you are an out of state student.

    If you are an out-of-state student and choose to enroll at Lewis University, you do have the option to obtain Licensure in Illinois and complete your practicum in Illinois.

  5. Is There an Admission Interview?
  6. No, we do not conduct interviews. Applications are reviewed by an admission committee.

  7. What are the Guidelines for Letters of Recommendation?
  8. Two Letters of Recommendation are required: one from a nurse with a master’s or doctoral degree in the specialty for which you are applying; the second from your current supervisor or manager.

  9. Are GRE Scores Required for Admission?
  10. No.

  11. How Long Does It Take to Receive Acceptance Once I Have Applied?
  12. MSN and NP student applications are reviewed and notified on average within 3 weeks.

    CAS student transcripts and course transfer equivalencies will be reviewed upon notice of acceptance to the program.

  13. How Soon Can I Begin My Degree Once I Have Been Accepted?
  14. It is expected that students will begin taking courses in the semester immediately following the date of admission. Early application is encouraged and recommended.

  15. How Much is the Cost of the Program I am Applying To?
  16. Current tuition and fees can be found here. Tuition for the program is the number of credit hours times the fee/credit hour. The University covers the cost of student clinical insurance.

    Students are responsible for all fees related to background checks and health and clinical documentation in preparation for clinical experiences.

    Employer tuition discount and deferral plans make Lewis one of the more affordable private universities in the Chicago area.

  17. How Long Will It Take to Complete My Degree Program?
  18. Time to complete each specialization can vary depending on the area of specialization and whether the student is working full-time or part-time. On average, anywhere from 1 year for the School Nurse non-degree program to 3 ½ years for the master's programs.

    Nursing Education 40 credit hours
    Healthcare Systems Leadership 36 credit hours
    Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner  46 credit hours+540 clinical hours
    Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner 46 credit hours+540 clinical hours
    Family Nurse Practitioner  48 credit hours+630 clinical hours
    Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner 49 credit hours+540 clinical hours
    School Nurse 38 credit hours

    The above are for MSN programs.  CAS and school nurse non-degree are much shorter.

  19. How Do Clinical Placements Work?
  20. MSN and CAS NP Tracks

    The student admitted to the Nurse Practitioner track must complete 540-630 hours of supervised clinical experiences during the program.  Students are encouraged to start their practicum planning upon acceptance to the program.  For clinical placement, students are expected to be active participants by identifying preceptors and facilitating communication during the process. Students must play an active role. The preceptor and the clinical site must be approved by the Clinical Coordinators and/or Track lead faculty to best meet the needs of the student in the designated course.

    Our Clinical Placement Office will act as facilitator and the primary point of contact for you in the placement cycle. 

  21. What is the Difference in Salary Once I Have My MSN?
  22. Many nurses question whether it is worth it for them to further their education by earning a Master of Science in Nursing degree. There are several reasons why an RN may choose to go back to school, including the opportunity to expand their practice, increase their impact and of course the increased MSN salary.

    According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, the overall employment of APRNs is expected to grow by 40% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that MSN-prepared nurses, on average, make $42,000 more than RNs. Salaries vary according to the specialty and region of the country.