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Frequently Asked Questions

Second Degree Applicants

When is the application deadline?
The application deadline is April 1st.

How long is the program and when does it begin?
The program is a twelve-month program that begins in August and concludes the following August. Due to the rigor and intensity of the program, some students elect or require 13-16 months to complete the program because of family or personal reasons.

Is the program full time or can I go part time?
The program is full time only with the majority of class and clinical experiences during the day.

Am I able to work while enrolled in the program?
It is strongly recommended that you do not work while in the program due to the time and effort necessary to excel in the program.

Where can I complete the prerequisite coursework?
The coursework may be completed at any accredited college or university.

Do the prerequisites need to be completed before I apply to the program?
No. You may apply to the program before completing the prerequisites. If accepted, your admission will be contingent upon successful completion of the coursework before the program begins.

Are an essay and letters of recommendation required for the application?
No. The primary consideration for admission is the first undergraduate GPA and the GPA for the prerequisite coursework.

What is the NCLEX-RN Exam and what is the preparation?
The NCLEX-RN Exam is the National Certification Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses. All nursing students are required by law to take the NCLEX-RN in order to become licensed registered nurses. The NCLEX-RN is taken after graduation from an accredited nursing program.

NCLEX preparation begins in the first semester of the Second Degree Program. Students use particular software programs to promote success in their courses as well as on the NCLEX. Faculty are committed to active learning strategies that enhance critical thinking and test taking skills. Nursing exams are constructed similarly to the NCLEX and NCLEX questions are used during class time as a teaching strategy. Students take a specific nursing course in the final semester that focuses on the NCLEX-RN exam. Students will have the opportunity to take standardized clinical specialty exams and a comprehensive exam to prepare them for the NCLEX-RN exam. Duquesne employs the Health Education Systems Incorporated (HESI), a United States company that provides exams and other educational material designed to prepare student nurses for professional licensure, and predict their likely success in tests such as the NCLEX-RN. Duquesne requires a score of 900 in the Exit HESI Exam in the student's final course, Role Preparation II.