About NursingCAS

About NursingCAS

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About NursingCAS

NursingCAS is the online, centralized application service for nursing. Through NursingCAS, students can research and apply to diploma, associate degree, baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral nursing programs at participating schools nationwide.

Participation in NursingCAS is free and voluntary to accredited schools of nursing. New nursing schools can be added to NursingCAS at any time. Institutions looking to join the service are encouraged to review the Registration Materials and contact the NursingCAS staff.

Participating schools will enjoy access to a larger, more diverse applicant pool while receiving the online tools and customer support services needed to alleviate the administrative burdens faced by admission offices. For schools already at maximum capacity in terms of applications, NursingCAS provides some much-needed relief by offering a convenient way to verify transcript information, calculate GPAs, and sort applicant data at no charge to the institution. All participating schools receive a free copy of the software WebAdMIT needed to manage applicant information.


NursingCAS launched in March 2010. Phase I of the NursingCAS launch included any type of undergraduate registered nurse (RN) program, including diploma, associate degree, baccalaureate, and entry-level master’s programs. Phase II launched in September 2010, which expanded to include masters and doctoral nursing programs. Read more about the NursingCAS launch and expansion.

NursingCAS is operated by AACN in partnership with Liaison International, the nation’s leading provider of centralized application services to health professions associations. Liaison currently works with many other disciplines, including dentistry, pharmacy, physician assistants, and public health. 

AACN and its partner have worked closely with an expert Advisory Group to establish NursingCAS. Currently led by Dr. Nancy DeBasio, President of Research College of Nursing, the group includes nursing school deans and directors, academic advisors, and enrollment personnel.  For a complete list of advisors and schools represented click here. The precursor to NursingCAS was a pilot, grant-funded project called WTNEC (the West Texas Nursing Education Consortium) an initiative of Texas Tech University Health Science Center Anita Thigpen Perry School of Nursing. As a result of the initiative, all nursing applicant spaces where filled in WTNEC programs for the fall 2009 semester. And 24% of applicants using WTNEC were duplicate applications. NursingCAS seeks to achieve similar results on a national scale once widespread adoption is achieved. To learn more about the WTNEC project and its outcomes, click here.


NursingCAS was developed to maximize capacity in schools of nursing and fill all available seats. Even though enrollment and applications to schools of nursing have increased significantly for the past few years, a large number of schools report having room to accommodate additional students each year. In 2011, over 75,000 qualified applications were turned away for baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs, even though more than 15,000 available seats went unfilled. NursingCAS provides a much-needed mechanism to direct students looking to gain entry into nursing school with open seats at participating institutions. To learn more about how this is impacting your state, click here.

NursingCAS will be instrumental in providing accurate data needed to identify workforce trends and inform public policy decisions. The comprehensive data set that results from having a central entry point into nursing will assist with developing workforce projections, identifying employment patterns, and tailoring recruitment strategies to reach under-represented populations in nursing. This service also will provide health profession advisors with feedback on admissions trends and standards for the profession, which will help them steer qualified students into nursing programs.