PhD in Nursing Program Admissions

Application Deadlines

UC's PhD in nursing program admits once per year with classes starting in the fall (August).

PhD in Nursing Deadlines for Fall Semester Start
Priority Application Deadline Dec. 15
NursingCAS Fee Due
April 15 (if seats remain)
Transcripts, References & Test Scores Due
May 15

The priority application deadline helps ensure applicants who submit their NurcingCAS application and fee by this date will be considered for the Fall 2023 cohort. Applicants who have not submitted the NursingCAS application fee by the time all seats are filled could be considered for the Fall 2024 cohort at the discretion of faculty.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. To meet the final deadline of May 15, applicants must:  

  • Complete NursingCAS information and pay the NursingCAS fee by April 15; and
  • Ensure their transcripts, letters of recommendation and test scores are received by Nursing CAS by May 15.

PhD Program Admission Requirements

Candidates for admission to the program are evaluated with attention to all aspects of the individual's qualifications. Decisions for supporting or denying admission are not based on a single criterion. The following qualifications are highly desired:

  • Minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale (Graduate GPA cannot be submitted in place of undergraduate GPA.)
  • Minimum graduate GPA (if applicable) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Goals are well-articulated and are compatible with faculty expertise and availability.

GRE scores are not required for admission.

Students seeking admission to the PhD program at the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing must have either a bachelor's or master's degree in nursing or a master's in a health-related field and potential to develop new scientific knowledge related to nursing and/or health care.

PhD Program Application Requirements

The college’s PhD application includes three parts, listed and explained below. If you have questions throughout the process, contact our Office of Student Recruitment at 513-558-8400 or

Applicants should complete Part 1 by April 15.

All application materials, including transcripts, must be submitted to NursingCAS, not the University of Cincinnati. Once in NursingCAS, you will be required to enter the following information:

  • NursingCAS fee of $80
  • Resume or CV
  • Names of three to six leaders who worked directly with you in a service or academic setting to provide a recommendation letter (You will enter their names and email addresses in NursingCAS and they will receive a request to write a letter for you.)
  • All higher education institutions attended and dates
  • Coursework entry: Either complete your coursework entry from official or complete unofficial transcripts, or submit payment for optional Professional Transcript Entry (PTE) service.
  • Personal statement: Respond to the five prompts below in separate documents with a maximum of 300 words per response. Please include the prompt you are addressing at the top of each document.
    • Career Goals: What are your career goals and how do you see the PhD program contributing to meeting them? 
    • Significant Area of Research: Within your particular area of interest, identify some problems you see as offering promise for research.
    • Personal Strengths: What particular strengths do you think you bring to this program that would enrich the learning environment of your peers? 
    • UC Faculty Research Match: Identify one or two potential advisers from our college scientists who may be a good match for your research interests and provide a rationale for your choice.
    • Diversity Statement: Share how are you prepared to work in an academic environment with people from cultures and backgrounds different than your own.
  • Writing sample: In a separate document no longer than three to four paragraphs, address the following statement: "Differentiate between the research scholar (PhD, or a Doctor of Philosophy) and the practice scholar (DNP, or a Doctor of Nursing Practice)." Use APA formatting and include citations, if used.
  • Other documents:
    • Optional — copy of RN License, or equivalent for international applicants
    • Test scores:
      • English Proficiency Score: International applicants who are not originally from a country where English is the first language or have not completed a higher education degree (bachelor's, master's or doctorate) in a country where English is the first language must upload their scores into their application and have official scores reported to the University of Cincinnati Graduate School. Required scores:
        • Internet-based TOEFL: 100 or higher
        • Computer-based TOEFL: 250 or higher
        • Paper-based TOEFL: 600-603
        • IELTS: 7.0 or higher overall score
        • Duolingo: 120 or higher
      • Optional — GRE Score: The GRE is NOT required for our PhD program, but applicants who feel it may strengthen their application may upload an official score report and have scores sent to the University of Cincinnati Graduate School (code 1833).

The NursingCAS application includes instructions for ordering electronic transcripts for submission, which most institutions allow.

If your institution does not allow this, request the issuing institution mail your transcripts directly to NursingCAS, P.O. Box 9201, Watertown, MA 02471. Materials must be received by the posted deadline.

Applicants should complete Part 2 by May 15.

The following must be received by NursingCAS by the Part 2 deadline:

  • Official transcripts from all schools previously attended
    • International applicants (except Canadian applicants with transcripts in English) must have their transcripts translated and certified by the World Education Service (WES) or another NACES member. Please start this process at least three months before the Part 2 deadline to ensure that the documents arrive on NursingCAS or the Graduate School on time
  • Recommendation letters from individuals providing recommendations

A couple of days after your NursingCAS application reaches verified status, you will receive an email with a link to pay the UC Graduate School fee of $65 ($70 for international applicants).

The UC College of Nursing requires qualified PhD Nursing Research applicants to undergo an interview for admission. Qualified applicants will be informed of this offer, with details of the interview provided at the time of the offer. Applicants are reviewed on a rolling basis and not guaranteed interviews.

Requirements upon Acceptance

Admitted students must complete their acceptance confirmation in the UC Graduate School application portal within 15 business days of the release of their offer.  

  • Fill out the confirmation form, found in the UC Graduate School application portal
  • Pay the $100 non-refundable matriculation fee within the UC Graduate School application portal
  • Provide proof of current immunizations

International applicants are responsible for ensuring that their visa status meets program requirements and that online course requirements adhere to sponsored funding requirements. For additional information, visit the UC International Student Admissions website.

More Information

For more information, contact our Office of Student Recruitment at 513-558-8400 or