PhD Program

Admission Requirements

To be considered for the PhD program, applicants must have:
  • Earned or in the process of completing a BS in Nursing from an AACN, CCNE or NLN accredited institution; the University of Michigan School of Nursing considers post-baccalaureate and post-masters applicants for admission consideration, the MS in Nursing is not required for admission consideration to the PhD program. Note: Successful completion of the BS in nursing must occur prior to the term of application. 
  • Minimum 'B' average in all undergraduate and graduate (if applicable) coursework (this includes all courses taken to satisfy the degree requirements for a BS in nursing). An overall B average in all coursework is equivalent to a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale (U.S. grading scale).
  • Satisfactory (preferably within the 50th percentile or above) verbal, quantitative and analytical scores on the GRE. Please check the ETS website for the most current GRE scores and rankings.
  • Proof of current active RN licensure in at least one state or jurisdiction; or proof of pending licensure in at least one state or jurisdiction. If offered admission, the RN license must be obtained prior to the first term of enrollment in the PhD program.

Application Deadline

The application opens September 6, 2017. 
The application deadline for the PhD program is November 1, 2017.

Application Details

The application is online: Rackham Graduate School application. This is the only application to be considered for the PhD in Nursing program.
Required supporting materials
  1. Academic Statement of Purpose
Provide a comprehensive statement, not to exceed 1000 words, that delineates your rationale for pursuing the PhD program. The statement is most effective when it specifies your:
Professional goals for the future as a PhD prepared nurse.
Appraisal of research interests as they pertain to one of the four areas of concentration (research areas) with the University of Michigan PhD program.
Identification of current faculty at the University of Michigan School of Nursing that are conducting research in your area of interest.
  1. Personal Statement
Provide a comprehensive answer, not to exceed 500 words, to the following question within the Rackham application under the section 'Personal Statement': How have your background and life experiences, including cultural, geographical, financial, educational or other opportunities or challenges, motivated your decision to pursue the PhD at the University of Michigan? Note that the personal statement should provide evidence that you have researched the PhD program at the University of Michigan School of Nursing.
  1. Recommendations
The University of Michigan requires three recommendations. At least two of the three required recommendations must be from individuals who have a PhD in nursing. The recommendation form is part of the Rackham Graduate School application. We are unable to accept application forms that are not linked to the online application. Detailed recommendation form instructions are available on the Rackham Graduate School website. Recommendations must be completed and submitted no later than the deadline. 
  1. Official Post-Secondary Transcripts
The University of Michigan School of Nursing requires official transcripts from the institution where you earned or will earn your Bachelors of Science in Nursing (and master's, if applicable).Official transcripts must be sent to Rackham Graduate School. It is important you review the Rackham page for detailed instructions on submitting transcripts prior to beginning the submission process.
  1. Resume or Curricula Vitae
Your current resume or CV should be uploaded as a MS Word document within the online Rackham application. The recommended length for a CV is 3 pages maximum.
  1. One Solely Authored Scholarly Paper
Examples: Master’s thesis, published article, scholarly paper, research (data-based) paper; the paper you select to submit in support of the application must be solely authored. If you are a post-baccalaureate applicant you may submit a high-quality scholarly paper that you solely authored during your undergraduate program. The scholarly paper does not need to reflect your chosen area of focus within the PhD program. The Admissions Committee will review the papers for writing style and scholarly quality, including the use of citations and references and evidence of critical thinking. An electronic version of your scholarly paper in PDF format must be emailed to no later than the deadline.

GRE Guidelines

The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is required for all PhD applicants.
The Admissions Committee accepts the following as an official GRE score:
  • Official score report sent directly to University of Michigan from ETS (GRE code: 1839).
  • Original score reports sent to the applicant and submitted as part of their application
  • Scores listed on official transcripts by a college or university
  • Memo, secured by the applicant, presented on another school's letterhead stating that a GRE score report was submitted directly to that college or university by ETS on a specified date, that the original score report is being maintained by that college or university, and that a photocopy of the original score report is attached; this correspondence must be signed by an official at the school (e.g. program director, registrar, Dean)
If scores are not within acceptable ranges (50th percentile or above), applicants may need to repeat the GRE. To determine what scores would be considered acceptable (50th percentile or above), please review the GRE scoring document.

International Applicant Additional Requirements

  • Transcripts and Evaluations
All prospective international applicants need to review the requirements for academic credentials from non-U.S. institutions and submit the required documents listed to Rackham Graduate School as instructed. 
  • English Proficiency
The University of Michigan School of Nursing requires that International students who did not attend a U.S. or Canadian undergraduate institution in which the language of instruction was English to submit official English proficiency exam scores to the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School (school code: 1839) from the TOEFL or IELTS no later than the deadline to be considered for admission. For details, see Entrance Exams
  • Scholarships

Scholarships administered by the U-M Rackham Graduate School are available to international PhD students. Learn about these merit-based opportunities by visiting Rackham.

  • Other Important Information

The University of Michigan requires evidence of full financial support before they will issue the documentation necessary for admitted students to apply for an International Travel visa. Therefore, prospective international students should carefully investigate financial aid opportunities during the application process. For more information on obtaining a visa and other details specific to international students, visit the International Center.


Application Fee

  • $75 for U.S. applicants
  • $90 for international applicants
The application fee is required for submission of the completed application.

Admission Interview

Applicants will be notified if selected for an admission interview. All application materials listed on this page must be received at the specified location (Rackham or the School of Nursing) no later than the deadline in order to have your application reviewed. This includes all transcripts, scholarly paper, completed application, official GRE scores and English proficiency scores if needed. 

How Can I Learn More About The Program?

Webinars are held during the fall. These live webinars are hosted by faculty and current students, and provide a great opportunity to receive information and ask questions. Please refer to Visitor Information or email for more information.

Contact Information

Contact the Recruiting & Admissions team with any questions at
U-M School of Nursing
426 N. Ingalls Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2003