CRNA School Requirements

CRNA School RequirementsThe first step towards thinking about CRNA school is understanding the CRNA school requirements.  In general, there are four bare minimum CRNA program requirements: Degree, GPA, ICU experience and RN License.

CRNA Education Requirements

CRNA Education RequirementsIn terms of CRNA education requirements, all CRNA programs will require a minimum education of a Bachelors degree in a Science related field.  For example, this could be Bachelors degree in Biology, Chemistry or Physics can be considered.  However, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree is always preferred and many CRNA schools will only accept a BSN.

You need to check to make sure that there are no CRNA education requirements in terms of the university you attended.  For example, some nurse anesthetist schools will only accept students from CCNE or NLNAC (National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission) accredited schools.

The second of the nurse anesthetist education requirements is GPA. All CRNA programs require a minimum GPA of 2.75.  This GPA requirement includes cumulative GPA in addition to GPA of science related courses.  In general, the average GPA of students attending CRNA School is approximately a 3.5 GPA.  Those admitted to top CRNA programs will generally have a GPA of 3.70 or higher.

There are 47 CRNA Schools that do not require GRE and 16 CRNA Schools that do not require GRE if your GPA is above a minimum threshold – usually 3.2 or higher.

For schools with lower nurse anesthetist education requirements, check out Easiest CRNA Schools to Get Into where we list out schools with higher acceptance rates.

ICU Experience

ICU ExperienceICU Experience is considered one of the standard CRNA program requirements.  The more ICU work experience you have, the better prepared you will be for CRNA School.  The minimum work experience is 1 year of critical care coverage.  Most CRNA students are in their early thirties age with 3-4 years of work experience.  So, you will be competing with other people applying to the school who have multiple years of experience in ICU.  In general, CRNA admissions are looking for more critical care experience and experience at larger hospitals where you have more cases, exposure and critical thinking opportunities.  In general, larger hospitals provide more exposure in the following areas

  • Comparable in intensity / stress of ICU environment
  • Use of ventilator and other hospital equipment
  • ECG monitoring
  • Invasive monitoring which may include arterial blood pressure, CVP, pulmonary artery catherization, ABG analysis, ICP and IAP, etc
  • Experience with critical care pharmacology
  • Vasoactive infusions

Best ICU Experience

It is important to note that ICU orientation is not considered as part of the minimum 1 year CRNA School requirement.  However, there are exceptions to the list as found in CRNA schools without ICU experience.  The more experience you have in the ICU environment, the better prepared you will be for the nurse anesthetist program.  For CRNA admissions, they generally consider these ICU experience from these departments as the best for fulfilling CRNA School requirements:

  • Cardiothoracic ICU – caring for postoperative cardiac and thoracic surgery patients
  • Coronary Care Unit (CCU) or Cardiac ICU – caring for patients with heart attacks
  • Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) – caring for patients with wide range of medical conditions, such as lung problems, gastrointestinal problems, and blood infections
  • Neuro ICU – Caring for patients with life threatening neurological problems.
  • Surgical ICU (SICU) – caring for patients who recently had or potentially need surgery
  • TICU – Trauma ICU

In this section, we list out CRNA Program Requirements Without ICU Experience in the United States. Please click on the CRNA School name for more detailed information on the selected CRNA program.

All CRNA Schools Without ICU ExperienceER ExperienceICU ExperiencePICU Experience
Augusta CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Rosalind Franklin CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Excela Health School of AnesthesiaDependsAcceptedAccepted
FSU CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Marquette CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Millikin CRNA
UAMS CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
UM CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
University of Puerto RicoAcceptedAccepted
Clarkson College CRNAAcceptedAccepted
U of M CRNA Program
Goldfarb CRNADepends
VCU CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Antillean Adventist UniversityAcceptedAccepted
Inter American UniversityAcceptedAccepted
Lincoln Memorial University CRNA ProgramDependsDepends
Saint Marys CRNAAcceptedAccepted
UNF CRNAAcceptedAccepted
York College CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Cedar Crest CRNA
Northshore CRNAAccepted
UAB CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Drexel CRNAAccepted
TCU CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Middle Tennessee School of Anesthesia
Minneapolis School of AnesthesiaAcceptedAccepted
AdventHealth CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Case Western CRNA
Cleveland Clinic CRNA program
FIU CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Samford CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Iowa CRNAAcceptedAccepted
USM CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Wayne State CRNA
UPMC HamotAcceptedAccepted
Michigan State University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Baylor College of Medicine CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Bloomsburg CRNAAcceptedAccepted
UT Houston CRNAAcceptedAccepted
KU CRNA ProgramAccepted
National University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Army CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Fairfield CRNA
LSU CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Mayo Clinic CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Minnesota CRNAAccepted
UTK CRNA ProgramDependsDepends
Virtua Our Lady of Lourdes
Northeastern CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Rush University CRNA
Military CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Oakland University CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Saint Francis CRNA
Truman CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
University of Tennessee Health Science CenterAccepted
Bryan College CRNAAcceptedAccepted
NKU CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Columbia University CRNAAccepted
Gonzaga CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Integrated Anesthesia AssociatesAccepted
Lourdes University CRNADependsAcceptedAccepted
Mayo Clinic Health SystemAcceptedAccepted
Otterbein CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Rutgers CRNAAccepted
UND CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
University of Akron CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Maryland CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Webster University Nurse Anesthesia Program
Yale CRNAAcceptedAccepted
MUSC CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Westminster CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Florida Gulf Coast University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Arizona CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Western Carolina University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
ASU CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of South Carolina CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Tulsa NursingAcceptedAccepted
Boston College CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Buffalo CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Detroit Mercy CRNADependsAcceptedAccepted
Duke CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Georgetown CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Johns Hopkins CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Kaiser CRNAAccepted
Mount Marty CRNAAcceptedAccepted
OHSU NursingAcceptedAccepted
Old Dominion University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Quinnipiac CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Raleigh School of Nurse AnesthesiaDependsDepends
St Elizabeth Health CenterAcceptedAccepted
UNE CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
University of Scranton CRNAAcceptedAccepted
USC CRNA SchoolAcceptedAccepted
Villanova CRNA programAccepted
Barry University Nurse Anesthesia ProgramDependsDepends
Murray State CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Newman CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Samuel Merritt CRNAAcceptedAccepted
WVU CRNA programAccepted
UPenn CRNAAccepted
Marian University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Saint Joseph HospitalAcceptedAccepted
Loma Linda CRNAAcceptedAccepted
La Roche CRNA
Charleston Area Medical CenterAcceptedAccepted
Emory CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Jefferson CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Missouri State University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Texas Wesleyan University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
UNC CRNA ProgramAccepted
Union University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
University of Cincinnati CRNAAccepted
University of Pittsburgh CRNAAcceptedAccepted
USF CRNA ProgramAcceptedAccepted
Wake Forest CRNAAcceptedAccepted
Albany Medical College CRNA Program
Keiser University CRNAAcceptedAccepted
La Salle CRNA programAcceptedAccepted
Midwestern University CRNAAcceptedAccepted

Other Nurse Anesthetist School Requirements

Other Nurse Anesthetist School RequirementsLastly, the minimum education requirements for nurse anesthetist is that you must hold a current and active registered nursing license.  You can check the status of your nursing license through your current home State Board of Nursing.

If you are an international student applying from overseas, most CRNA schools will require you to take the TOEFL as well.

Although not mandatory, about one third of all CRNA schools now require CRNA shadow experience.  Even if the school doesn’t require shadow experience, we recommend you shadow a CRNA for at least one full day.  This will give you a leg up against other applicants because it shows that you’re serious about having a career in the field of nurse anesthesia and at the same time you’ll really understand what being a CRNA is all about.

Top CRNA Schools

best crna schoolsWe spent hundreds of hours studying all CRNA schools and interviewing over 125 nurse anesthetists to create our exclusive list of Best CRNA Schools.  So now you know the CRNA School requirements, your next research is to compare the Best CRNA programs with the Nurse Anesthetist School Requirements in order to see which CRNA schools are the best fit and which programs you should apply to.

Map of CRNA Schools by State

As you think about CRNA program requirements, we provide all the CRNA Schools by State in the map for your reference below.


The darker the blue color equivocates to more CRNA Schools in the State.
Tier 1 = 6 or more CRNA Schools
2nd Tier = 3 to 5 CRNA Schools
Tier 3 = 1 or 2 CRNA Schools
White means no CRNA schools in the State.
Data source: everythingCRNA

Conclusion on Nurse Anesthetist School Requirements

In conclusion, it is important that you take into account the CRNA Program requirements to make sure you qualify for admission.  The minimum CRNA School requirements are a GPA above 2.75, 1 year of critical care experience and an active nursing license.  These are the minimum requirements.  Most CRNA Schools, especially the top CRNA schools, will have more additional criteria.

Are you currently a SRNA or CRNA professional?  Please be kind and list out your stats that got you into your CRNA program.  Everyone in the community appreciates the knowledge sharing.

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