Skip to main content

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Postgraduate Certificate Admissions

Program Prerequisites

You must hold a graduate degree in nursing that qualifies you to sit for APRN certification.

And you need a minimum of two years of recent NICU experience (level 3 or higher) by the application deadline.

The following are prerequisite graduate-level courses (or equivalent) to be completed prior to, or as part of, our program.

There are different prerequisites for the program’s four focus areas.

These courses may be from an APRN graduate program from another institution or completed at RUSH. A gap analysis and individualized program of study will be completed for each matriculating student.

Area of focus: acute care pediatric nurse practitioner

  • Advanced pathophysiology
  • Advanced pharmacology/applied pharmacology
  • Advanced physiology
  • Advanced health assessment/diagnostics
  • Palliative care Training: ELNEC pediatric, palliative care certification, or palliative care coursework to be completed prior to 557A
  • Advanced primary care of the child (didactic)
  • Transition to the APRN role

Area of focus: neonatal nurse practitioner

  • Advanced pharmacology
  • Advanced physiology
  • Transition to the APRN role

Area of focus: psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner

  • Advanced pathophysiology
  • Advanced pharmacology
  • Advanced health assessment
  • Transition of APN role course

Area of focus: adult-gerontology acute nurse practitioner

  • Advanced pathophysiology
  • Advanced pharmacology/applied pharmacology
  • Advanced health assessment across the lifespan
  • Diagnostics for the APRN
  • Transition to the APRN role
  • Health promotion

Admission Guidelines

Applications are evaluated based on the following:

  • GPAs of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale). RUSH receives GPA calculations from NursingCAS after it has received all of your official transcripts.
    • Cumulative GPA — all college-level coursework.
    • Prelicensure nursing GPA — only nursing courses before licensure.
  • Substantive answers to personal essay questions (included in the Program Materials section of NursingCAS).
  • Three professional letters of recommendation.
    • One letter must be from current manager (the person who is responsible for your evaluation).
    • Two letters must be from individuals in leadership positions who can speak to your clinical abilities.
    • One academic faculty member may be used if the coursework has been completed within the past two years.
    • Choose recommenders who know you well and can evaluate your abilities, critical thinking and potential for successfully completing graduate school.
    • Recommendations from friends, relatives or co-workers will not be accepted. Your application will be delayed or denied.
  • Resume or CV that includes the following information:
    • Community service.
    • Educational, leadership and professional organization activities.
    • Scholarly activities, including publications, presentations, research, honors and awards.
    • Work experience.
  • Registered nurse (RN) licensure in the United States.
  • TOEFL scores if required.
  • Personal interviews with faculty.
  • At least six months of recent neonatal intensive care unit experience (level 3 or higher) is required by the application deadline.

If you fail to submit accurate or all required information, we will not consider you application for admission.

Enrollment restrictions for certain state residents

Online courses and programs are restricted in certain states.

We are unable to offer enrollment into our online programs to residents of the following states:

  • Louisiana
  • Tennessee

We are unable to offer enrollment into our advanced practice specialty online programs to residents of New York.

We are also unable to offer enrollment to residents of Canada.

If you do not reside in Illinois, contact your state’s higher education regulation authority for more details.

How to Apply to the Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Postgraduate Certificate Program

Applications are submitted through NursingCAS, the centralized application service for nursing.

NursingCAS collects and processes your application documents and verifies transcripts. We receive the information from NursingCAS and use it to make our admission decision.

How to apply:

  • Submit a completed application to NursingCAS.
    • You will be asked to enter the specific program.
    • You may apply to only one RUSH program and one admission term.
  • Pay the non-refundable $80 fee to NursingCAS.
  • Complete the brief RUSH supplemental application, which will be sent to you after submitting your application to NursingCAS. The supplemental application fee is $40.

We recommend that you complete your application and have all official transcripts sent to Nursing CAS well before the application deadline. It can take several weeks for NursingCAS to verify and process your transcripts.

We will not consider your application if it is inaccurate or incomplete.

Contact Our Admissions Office