MSN Degree Program Requirements

May 17, 2021

Are you interested in switching careers and pursuing a Master of Science in Nursing degree? A direct entry master’s in nursing can help you reach your goals of becoming a registered nurse (RN). Direct entry MSN programs are designed for adult learners who have already earned a bachelor’s degree in another field.

This program is a great fit for students who want to commit their new career to nursing and earn a graduate-level degree. By earning a master’s in nursing, students will be better prepared for roles in leadership, education, or continuing your education with an advanced specialty program.

While a science-related bachelor’s degree will be helpful, it is not needed. Most direct entry nursing programs require the completion of MSN prerequisite courses before a student can be admitted. The master’s in nursing prerequisites create an educational foundation that will be needed to succeed in the DEMSN program.

Is a BSN Degree Required in Order to Pursue an MSN?

It makes sense that most people assume a Bachelor of Science in Nursing is a vital part of the MSN requirements for admission – but that is not the case! Colleges that offer a direct entry master’s in nursing have successfully educated and trained non-nursing students to enter their new field as RNs and other health care roles. By earning a direct entry master’s degree, students will have an advantage for more job opportunities, higher salary, and to become a leader in a field that is growing at a faster-than-average rate [1] compared to all other occupations.

To pursue a direct entry master’s of nursing, students will need to have completed a bachelor’s degree (in any discipline). Direct entry MSN prerequisite courses are also required to better prepare students for their coursework. Offering the same rigorous curriculum that can be found in traditional master’s of nursing programs, direct entry MSN programs can be completed at an accelerated rate.

Learn more about earning your MSN without a BSN.

Prerequisite Courses to Pursue an MSN Degree

MSN prerequisite courses are required for admission into a master’s in nursing degree. These courses will give you the foundation needed in nursing-related subjects to help you succeed in a direct entry MSN program.

Some of the required prerequisite courses you might come across include:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Microbiology
  • Chemistry
  • Nutrition
  • Statistics
  • Psychology

Find out more in our Direct Entry MSN prerequisites guide.

GPA Requirement to Pursue an MSN

A solid GPA is an important MSN requirement for admission into a direct entry MSN. A student’s GPA can say a lot about their previous dedication and ability to meet academic goals. A GPA score can translate to how successful they will be in an accelerated master’s of nursing program.

The GPA requirements for a direct entry MSN differ based on which school you might be considering for your degree. While some schools might allow a GPA of a “C or better”, most master’s in nursing programs will require a 3.0 GPA. The top schools that offer a direct entry MSN can be more competitive and require an even higher GPA.

Explore Our DEMSN Programs

There are many options to choose from when searching for a direct entry MSN program. At, you can find more information on DEMSN requirements and featured direct entry nursing programs to jumpstart a career in nursing. Read more about high quality DEMSN programs and select the program best suited for you.

Want to Become an RN with a Master’s?

Our Direct Entry MSN programs make it possible. Learn more.