The SON Approved for a Five-Year Waiver of GRE Requirement for Graduate Admission

Starting in August 2014, applicants to graduate programs at the SON will not be required to submit GRE scores. Faculty leaders from the PhD, DNP, and MSN programs collaborated to petition the Graduate School to have the GRE requirement waived for a five-year period. During that time, data collection and analysis will examine the impact on admission and progression of applicants to the School’s graduate programs.

“The GRE has never been the primary component of our application process; we consider many factors in student admission. However we have not found clear evidence that links the GRE to success in graduate programs in nursing, and we know it is sometimes perceived as an admissions barrier, ” said Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Gwen Sherwood, PhD, RN, FAAN. “In line with our goal to make high-quality graduate nursing education available to as many qualified applicants as possible, we felt it was prudent and necessary to request a five year moratorium.” The SON joins other highly regarded schools of nursing, such as the University of Washington, in removing the GRE requirement.

Research suggests the GRE has a limited ability to predict students’ academic success in graduate nursing programs. Leaders of the SON’s graduate programs plan to conduct an ongoing evaluation of the change. “We intend to monitor this modification very carefully to see if it results in the outcomes we are aiming for,” said Dr. Sherwood. “Our hope is that removing the GRE will expand all elements of diversity in our applicant pool.”