Though often working collaboratively, nurses do not simply "assist" physicians and other health care providers. Instead, they practice independently within their own defined scope of practice. Nursing roles range from direct patient care to case management, establishing nursing practice standards, developing quality assurance procedures, and directing complex nursing care systems.

Typical Responsibilities

  • Assessing, managing, and orchestrating care
  • Communicating with other healthcare team members to plan care
  • Educating patients and families about disease trajectory, treatments, and side effects of medications
  • Documenting care

Preparing for Admission

  • Resources for researching schools: A Complete list of nursing programs can be found at:
  • Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) - Compresses four years of full-time nursing school into an average of 15 months (the minimum is 12 months, the maximum is 18). The accelerated second degree BSN gives credit for non-nursing classes already completed in college, then puts students through a sequence of nursing theory and clinical classes to prepare for the national licensing exam for Registered Nurses. A complete list of these programs can be found on The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) website.
  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) – For those students who have already completed a degree at the baccalaureate or graduate level, such as a BA/BS from Wooster. Many second-degree students are attracted to the master's program instead of a second bachelor's in nursing. These programs typically take 3 years to complete.
  • Doctoral Programs – Students wishing to pursue a doctoral degree in Nursing can find additional information about the various programs on the AACN site.

The Admissions Cycle

  • There is a Centralized Application Process (NursingCAS) that most nursing programs (195) participate in.
  • Application opens: August but deadlines vary per program. Many application deadlines are either in December or January for acceptance decisions in May. Please see each program’s website for specifics.
  • Fees: Undergraduate Level Programs: $45 for the 1st school, $30 each additional school.
  • Graduate Level Programs: $65 for the 1st school, $35 for each additional school.
  • NursingCAS does not yet offer a fee waiver program.
  • Letters of recommendation: Up to 6 references per program may be submitted through the Evaluator Portal.
  • Standardized test logistics: You can self-report to NursingCAS. Send official test scores directly to programs.