PhD Admission Requirements


The PhD in Nursing Program is housed within the College of Graduate Health Sciences. The PhD in Nursing curriculum is taught using traditional face-to-face seminars and Web-enhanced learning opportunities that include synchronous and asynchronous learning. In addition to courses taught by nursing faculty, students also enroll in courses with students admitted to other PhD programs administered by the College of Graduate Health Sciences.

Important Information on Fall 2017 Applications:

Attention applicants who are applying to Fall 2017 programs, the current NursingCAS cycle is closing on August 15, 2016. So you have two options:

1)      Submit your application and supporting materials, including transcripts and references before August 15, 2016

2)      Wait to submit your application and supporting materials, including transcripts and references after August 25, 2016 (reminder the deadline for these programs is January 15, 2017, with the exception of the PhD program which has a deadline of February 1, 2017)

Application Guidelines

Part 1: Application Process

Complete the NursingCAS application.

International applicants only:

  • a complete and accurate chronological outline of all previous education;
  • authorized college or university records, with certified translations if the records are in a language other than English;
  • evidence of financial resources sufficient to provide the student with adequate support during the period of registration as a student;
  • evidence of proficiency in English; and
  • documentation that the student can provide transportation from his/her country to The University of Tennessee Health Science Center and return.

Any applicant to the graduate program whose first language is not English must have achieved a minimum TOEFL Score earned within two (2) years prior to application to College of Nursing.

  • Official scores must be submitted from TOEFL.
  • Three versions of TOEFL: Paper-based Test (minimum score 550), Computer-based (minimum score 213), and Internet/web-based (minimum score 79).

Part 2: Minimum Requirements for PhD Admission

  • Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of at least 3.0 from an accredited college or university
  • A combined (verbal and quantitative) score of at least 1000/300 on the former/revised Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  • Unencumbered RN license
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Current CPR card
  • A score of at least 213/79 on the computer-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), 6.5 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or evidence of proficiency in English for students whose native language is not English.
  • Application documents from any non-U.S. institution must be sent to and verified by a National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) accredited agency
  • Official test scores and three letters of recommendation must be sent directly from the contributing source and not by the student

Part 3: Transcripts

Submit official copies of transcripts for all college and university work to NursingCAS

Part 4: Letters of Recommendation 

Submit three recommendation letters by adding your recommenders’ contact information into NursingCAS. For the PhD program, recommenders should speak to your strong knowledge base for furthering research and/or the ability to succeed in a research-based program of study.

Part 5: Essay

Write an essay on your research and clinical interests and why you are seeking to attain a PhD.

Part 6: Test Scores & Licenses

Photocopy your GRE results AND request that your official results are sent to UTHSC (code 1850) and College of Nursing (code1850).

Photocopy all your nursing license and any pertinent certifications.

Part 7: Applications Documents

Application documents from any non-U.S. institution must be sent to and verified by a NACES accredited agency. All agencies charge a fee, but some agencies have programs that charge a flat fee and will send the verified transcript to specific institutions upon request (for example, the ICAP program provided by World Education Services).

Future Student
Contact Information

920 Madison, #1020
Memphis, TN 38163

Jamie Overton, M.A.Ed.
Director of Student Affairs
920 Madison, #1021
Memphis, TN 38163

Shawn Boyd
920 Madison, #1033
Memphis, TN 38163

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