Admission Requirements: Post-Master's Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Admission Requirements: Post-Master's Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
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Miss our info session? Watch the recording to learn about the application process and admissions requirements from program director Dr. Lee Tyson, DNP, DMin, APRN-CNP, PMHNP-BC, CARN-AP, FIAAN.

stack of documents icon Admission Requirements

Designed for working nurses with busy schedules, our online Master of Nursing (MSN) graduate certificate programs enable you to pursue your professional goals on your own time. Earn your graduate degree without forfeiting your current position.

This certificate allows you to earn the required licensure to advance your career to a leadership position in a high-demand specialization. Admission requirements for certificates differ slightly from the online MSN programs.

The online graduate certificates offered through the College of Nursing are designed for nurse practitioners and other advanced-level nurses who have already earned their master’s degree. Passionate and highly motivated professionals with a goal of working in an advanced specialization will benefit most from these post-master’s certificates.

The University of Cincinnati’s online graduate nursing programs are not currently available to students located in Arizona, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Tennessee. State restrictions are subject to change. We encourage you to contact the appropriate state licensing agency in your state or the state where you intend to work to seek the most up-to-date information regarding state licensure requirements before starting the program. For more information on restricted states, please visit our State Authorization page.

Applications for our online certificate programs are accepted every semester. Applicants will be reviewed for admission based on their ability to complete this online program and on the criteria listed below.


  1. Current unrestricted RN license and a master’s in nursing degree from a regionally accredited institution
  2. At least one year of clinical experience
  3. Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree conferred from a regionally and nursing (ACEN, formerly NLNAC or CCNE) accredited institution
  4. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for the last degree earned
  5. Completion of an undergraduate statistics course with a 2.0 or higher on 4.0 scale.
  6. Science GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale.
  7. Master of Science degree conferred from a regionally and nursing (ACEN* or CCNE) accredited institution

Required Courses

  1. Advanced physiology/pathophysiology, including general principles that apply across the life span
  2. Advanced health assessment, which includes assessment of all human systems, advanced assessment techniques, concepts, and approaches
  3. Advanced pharmacology, which includes pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacotherapeutics of all broad categories of agents

These courses must be passed with a B or better, taken across the lifespan for the Advanced Practice Nurse and will only accept as independent courses. These are not permitted to be combined.  You can be admitted if you do not have these courses, these credits will be added to your program schema.


Applications for the online Master of Science in Nursing and online Post-MSN Certificate programs are submitted through NursingCAS.

Helpful Tips:

  • You can work on the application without submitting the application
  • You can pay and submit while waiting on transcripts/reference letters
  • Full coursework entry is required for the application


Official transcripts from all institutions attended should be sent directly to NursingCAS (American Association of College of Nursing). NO TRANSCRIPTS should be sent to the University.

International Transcripts must be evaluated by World Education Services (WES). WES evaluations are to be sent to NursingCAS directly.


Three letters of reference

References should come from individuals who can attest to your academic and professional skills. Reference letters should come from educators, managers, supervising physicians or APNs in specialty. Peer references are not encouraged.

Goal Statement

Provide a concise written statement (500-700 words) that indicates your preparation and passion for Psychiatric-Mental Health. Discuss how your long-term career goals are served by completing the Post-MSN Psych Mental Health NP program at UC.

Your goal statement is evaluated as a writing sample and should be written at the level expected for Post-MSN essays.

Professional Resume

Professional resume required.

Demonstrate your interst in Psychiatric-Mental Health by including leadership roles, committees, volunteer work, professional organizations, and special certifications.

The review committee is looking to see that you are developing yourself professionaly beyond your current role requirements. Take time to properly update your resume with all of the items listed aboveto set yourself apart from other applicants.

Additional Fees


  • State & U.S. Territory Restrictions

    • The University of Cincinnati’s online graduate nursing programs are not currently available to students located in Arizona, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Tennessee. For more information on restricted states, please visit our State Authorization page.
    • Currently, we cannot admit students from any U.S. territory: America Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • International Student Restrictions

    • An international student is defined as someone who holds citizenship in another country and is not a permanent resident of the United States.
    • International students are admissible to our online programs, providing they commit to doing their clinical requirements in the United States.
    • Due to the clinical requirements in our graduate online programs, international students must already have a visa that gives them legal status to work within the United States or must be able to obtain the legal status that will allow them to come to the U.S. and engage in clinical activities.
    • International students are not eligible for student visas for online programs, including clinical requirements.
    • It is the responsibility of the international student to have the appropriate work authorization documents or be able to obtain the appropriate work authorization before applying to online programs in the College of Nursing at the University of Cincinnati.
  • Clinical Restrictions

    • We cannot admit residents of U.S. Territories or in a country outside of the U.S. Only persons serving in the military who reside on a military base and can complete clinical requirements on the military base should apply to our College of Nursing graduate online programs. Prior to application to our program, the prospective student should confirm that they will have the ability to complete clinical requirements on the military base.
    • Students cannot complete clinicals at a U.S. Embassy.

Federal regulations require the University of Cincinnati to publicly disclose whether completion of certain programs that lead or may lead to professional licensure or certification would meet a given state’s educational requirements for a specific professional license or certification required for employment in an occupation (regardless of whether the program is on-ground, online, or hybrid).   To learn whether a University program meets a given state’s educational requirements, please visit the University of Cincinnati State Authorization webpage.