Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies Review

Georgetown University is a private college that was founded in 1789. Its total undergraduate enrollment is 7,562. It is ranked 20 in National Universities by US News and World Report. It also features a highly selective, online MSN and DNP degree program in nursing with a total enrollment of 820.

Favorite Features

Nursing programs are accredited by the CCNE

All of the nursing programs at Georgetown, including the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs, are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or CCNE.

This is the top, most respected accreditation agency in the field of nursing. When you or a potential employer sees that the program is CCNE accredited, it is clear that the program has met highly rigorous quality standards in nursing education.

Very low acceptance rate

The entire university has an acceptance rate of only 17%. This makes it one of the more selective programs in the country.

When a college is more selective regarding who it admits, this is a good sign that it is a high quality institution. Georgetown University has many people applying for entry, and it has the ability to select only the best for admission.

In the nursing programs online, the university is also quite selective. US News and World Report states that most recently, 1,124 people applied and 451 were accepted, for an acceptance rate of 40%.

US News and World Report ranks the graduate nursing program as #11 in selectivity, which also indicates that it is fairly difficult to be admitted. It also ranks this program at 93 points out of 100 for selectivity.

No GRE scores required for admission to nursing program

The graduate nursing programs at Georgetown do not require you to submit standardized test scores for admission, such as the GRE. Evidence is growing that high standardized test scores are not an accurate reflection of potential college success.

Instead, Georgetown University places a strong emphasis on your undergraduate GPA (3.5 average), three letters of recommendation, and nurse related work experience. It also puts a strong emphasis on your interview.

Nearly 100% pass rates for nurse practitioner certification exams

After you complete your family nurse practitioner program at Georgetown, you are eligible to sit for certification and licensure exams. This FNP program prepares you to take the American Nurses Credentialing Center (AANC) and the Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANP) for board certification and credentialing.

Georgetown students historically have an excellent first-time pass rate on these examinations. For example, in 2015, the ANCC pass rate was 100%; for the AACN, the pass rate was 98%. And for 2014, the ANCC pass rate was 100%; for the AACN, it was 95%.

High pass rates for these credentialing examinations are a good sign that Georgetown University is providing the highest quality graduate nursing education. There are few online nursing programs that have such high pass rates for these critical certification examinations.

Online nursing programs are both live and recorded

Some online programs are either entirely recorded lectures or entirely live lectures. The Georgetown program is a mixture. Thus, you will be able to take some of your classes on your own schedule as you have time to view the lectures. For other classes, you will need to meet with your professors and other students live at a set time.

While it is convenient to be able to watch your lessons on your own schedule, it also is helpful to have some classes live. This allows you to interact and bond more with your fellow students and professors. Many people believe this type of group learning is more effective than learning alone.

Least Favorite Features

Expensive tuition

At $1,928 per credit hour, Georgetown’s tuition costs are some of the most expensive in the country for online nursing programs. The total cost of tuition for the online MSN program is more than $80,000, plus books and fees.

It is important to remember that people who earn an MSN or DNP will usually earn a high salary, so the high cost of tuition may be affordable in many cases. But if you are taking on student debt to get your degree, you will need to be sure you are working in a high salary field of nursing.

3 on campus intensives required for MSN program

All students who are admitted into the MSN program are required to visit campus three times for intensive sessions. These sessions are important for meeting and networking with students and professors. You also will take certain clinical classes while you are on campus. There is no doubt that these sessions are an important part of the Georgetown nursing program.

However, having to travel to campus three times during the two year program is both expensive and difficult for people with personal and professional obligations.

If you decide to attend Georgetown, find out when the three intensive sessions are scheduled and plan early.

The Details

General Information

  • Founded in 1789
  • Application deadline: Jan. 10
  • Application fee: $75
  • School type: Private
  • Term Schedule: Semester
  • Location: Washington DC
  • Student-faculty ratio: 11:1

Tuition Rates (Per Credit)

  • Graduate online nursing: $1,928 in state and out of state

Nursing Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Master of Science in Nursing
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice


Class Profile

  • Only 17% acceptance rate, making it highly selective
  • 55% female, 45% male
  • In graduate nursing program, 92.7% are female
  • Average age of graduate nursing students is 32

Graduation and Retention Rates

  • 90% four year graduation rate, which is outstanding
  • 96% of freshmen return for a second year, which is far above the national average of 70.9%
  • Only 5.1% of students failed to graduate within 150% of the expected time; this is also excellent

US News Rankings

  • Best online graduate nursing programs: 68
  • Best value schools: 34
  • National universities: 20
  • High school counselor rankings: 10
  • International business: 6
  • Business programs: 15