UNC School of Nursing
Office of Student Affairs
(919) 966-4260


August 15, 2019
NursingCAS and Supplemental Applications Open
November 26, 2019, 11:59 p.m.
NursingCAS Application Deadline
December 3, 2019, 11:59 p.m.
Supplemental Application Deadline

*A link to the UNC Supplemental Application will be sent to you by email after you submit your completed NursingCAS application.


The Post-graduate Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) Certificate Program is designed to provide the opportunity for MSN or DNP-prepared APRNs to pursue education and training in a new population area for career expansion or role change. Post-graduate certificate students must successfully complete all course requirements of the selected population area. Graduates of the program are eligible to take a national certification exam appropriate to their population area. Program completion and national certification qualify graduates to apply for approval to practice in North Carolina.

Certificate programs are offered in the following population areas:

  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner-Primary Care
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
Who May Apply?

Registered Nurse Licensure: All applicants must hold a current unencumbered license as a registered nurse. NC License or compact state equivalent is required by matriculation.

Educational Background: An earned MSN or DNP from an NLNAC or CCNE accredited program conferred prior to August 1, 2020.

National Certification: All applicants must hold current certification as an APRN.

Work experience as a Registered Nurse: Within the past 3 years, applicants must have obtained a minimum of one year full-time, paid clinical work experience as a Registered Nurse by the application deadline.

GPA Requirement: Applicants are expected to have earned a 3.0 or better in MSN or DNP coursework.


    • All applicants must be admissible to all previously attended colleges/universities.
    • If you have been declared academically ineligible and as such are unable to return to any previous institutions, you must contact that institution and seek documentation that reinstates your eligibility or your application cannot undergo review. Copies of all correspondence regarding your reinstatement request must be submitted in the application.
    • If your final institutional cumulative GPA is below 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale), please upload documentation of your eligibility to return to that institution to NursingCAS under Program Documents as “Other.”
How Does the Program Work?

If you are admitted, the Lead Faculty in the selected population area will review all prior graduate coursework completed by the applicant to develop an individualized plan of study. If you are not currently practicing as an APRN, you will need to demonstrate successful completion of the “3 Ps” with a “B” or better within the last 5 years. In addition, if you were prepared as an APRN but do not have the 3 Ps as three distinct courses on your transcript, you may need to take one or more of the courses below.The 3 Ps include:

    • Advanced Physical Assessment
    • Advanced Pathophysiology
    • Advanced Pharmacology

Additional coursework or alternative coursework may be required based on this evaluation. All plans of study are also reviewed and approved by the Assistant Dean, MSN/DNP Programs.

Population-specific courses are taken with graduate APRN students in the MSN and DNP programs.

Students who drop out must competitively reapply for the next academic year. Clinical placements are planned with students according to their learning needs and career plans.

How Long Does it Take to Complete the Program?

The School of Nursing admits students for the fall semester each year; however, some Post-graduate Certificate students may not matriculate until spring depending on their individualized plan of study. The program can be completed in two academic years including one summer.

How Much Does the Program Cost?

Under revision. Please check back soon for updates.

When Should I Apply?

Admission to the Post-graduate Certificate Program is offered only once per year in the fall and requires submitting an application with NursingCAS and a supplemental application to UNC. Please see above for specific deadlines.