Nursing School Requirements for Potential Students
Nursing school requirements may vary by program and the type of nursing degree that students are attempting to earn. However the minimum requirements for nursing school are no more difficult than other occupations’ schools. Most students will be able to apply for nursing school relatively easily.
As one of the fastest growing job fields from 2008 to 2018, most nursing schools have a waiting list of candidates. Some of the most popular schools are facing 3 to 5 years of applicant backlog. Prospective nursing school students should be prepared to potentially wait for their admittance, especially if they are set on attending a popular or well-known school.
The common nursing school requirements are:
- ACT or SAT score check
- Collegiate or high school transcript
- Criminal background check
- G.E.D. or a high school diploma
- Minimum of a ‘C’ grade in certain classes if taken in high school or college (anatomy, biology, etc.)
Some nursing schools affiliated with larger educational institutions or nursing programs producing certain types of nurses may have additional requirements that must be passed by applicants. These additional requirements may include:
- At least 18 years of age
- Interview with admissions
- Liability insurance
- Physical health examination
Nurses who do not meet one of the minimum standards should be able to attend a community college for a year or two. If they can post passing grades in their courses, they should be able to reapply with a better chance of admittance. Students who are on a waiting list may also have to attend community college first as well.
Students who have a criminal history may still be able to become a nurse, depending upon the nature of their crime. Most nursing programs will at least look at applicants’ criminal histories on a case by case basis if the crime was minor.
As with any other educational school, a student with decent grades and a clean record is most likely to pass nursing school requirements. Prospective nursing students should be advised that taking more classes related to math and science before applying can help increase their understanding of nursing school coursework later.
All nurses must be relied upon to treat potentially handicapped, incapacitated, or vulnerable patients. Because of this, a prospective nurse will probably have to pass a background check before being admitted to nursing school and when applying for a new job. People who find this intrusive should be aware that they may have to pass multiple checks during the course of their career.
At the conclusion of nursing school, students will need to take and pass their state’s licensing examination. Failure to pass means that students will not become licensed nurses.
With the extremely high volume of students attempting to attend nursing school, prospective nurses should be applying as soon as possible in case they are placed on a waiting list. The length of a waiting list may deter some students, but the demand for nurses is expected to continue for the foreseeable future. In addition, there is a current shortage of nurses in the health care system. There is no reason to avoid nursing simply because of a long waiting list at a preferred nursing school.
Because of the intense competition for nursing school spots, prospective students should not give up if their first application is denied because of nursing school requirements. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is predicting that nursing will be one of the fastest growing occupations from 2008 to 2018. Nurses are in extremely high demand, but nursing schools simply need a little more time to expand their facilities in order to meet the demand.