Frequently Asked Questions


The first step is to attend the Information Session for the program you're interested in. During this session, you'll learn about the application requirements, as well as when and how to apply. Depending on the program, the session may be held in person or online via real-time video conference. Some programs may even have pre-recorded online sessions available for viewing at any time. Information Sessions may be updated annually. Keep the Information Session Code handy as you'll need it when submitting your online Health Sciences & Nursing application.

Yes, you must either take or transfer ENG 111 and have completed it with the required minimum grade. Some programs require a minimum grade of B to apply so remember to check your transcript to make sure you meet the grade requirement. Your degree does not waive ENG 111, but you may request transfer credit evaluation to see if a previous course will transfer.

Applicants to the Health Sciences and Nursing programs will not be placed in their desired program until after official acceptance. If you have not already declared a major when you applied to NOVA, or you are not already placed in a credit program, you may declare the General Studies Health Sciences major to complete the prerequisites or to request transfer credit evaluation. If needed, send an email with your name and student ID number to to request placement in the General Studies Health Sciences major.

Yes, you would have to take the course again and get a B or better grade to be eligible to apply. Your application will not be accepted if you do not have the minimum grade requirements.

No. You do not have to take SDV 101 if you have successfully completed another SDV course.  

No. You do not have to take SDV 101 if you have successfully completed the SDV ABLE exam.

The current policy, as outlined in the NOVA Credit for Prior Learning Manual, states that those, "who have graduated with an associate, baccalaureate or higher degree from a regionally accredited United States institution of higher education are considered to have fulfilled NOVA’s SDV requirement." If you meet this criteria then you do not have to take SDV 101 Intro to Healthcare. You will need to submit an official transcript to the NOVA College Records Office showing your previous degree to receive credit.

You may also satisfy the SDV 101 requirement via testing. The SDV Able Exam is available to take at any campus. Passing the exam will meet the SDV 101 requirement.

International medical degrees, training and work experience do not exempt students from any application requirements.  A course-by-course evaluation of your college and university transcripts will be required by an international evaluation agency to determine if any program requirements have already been met. Refer to the Transfer Credit Evaluation process for international transcripts.

Transfer Credit Evaluation

Refer to the Request Transfer Credit Evaluation step on the Steps to Apply website for the Medical Education Campus. This will explain the steps and provide important evaluation information for applicants to the Health Sciences and Nursing programs.

While waiting for evaluation, you may check if your school is listed in the Transfer Evaluation System to view what courses have previously transferred to NOVA. If your course and/or school are not listed in TES, you may still be eligible for credit but will need to wait for your evaluation to be completed by the CRO.

NOVA does not use minus grades so applicants need to pay attention to how minus grades will transfer to the college, especially if applying to a program that has a minimum grade requirement.

A - grade transfers as/is considered a B for application to the program
B - grade transfers as/is considered a C for application to the program
C - grade does not transfer/is considered a D for application to the program

Note: This question only applies to the Dental Assisting, Medical Laboratory Assisting, Nursing, and Phlebotomy programs. All other programs at MEC do not require proof of high school.

If your high school was outside of the United States, your transcript must be evaluated course-by-course by an international evaluation service before submitting it to NOVA. The college accepts international high school evaluations from the International Education Research Foundation (IERF) Please do not use World Education Services (WES) as they will not evaluate high school transcripts on a course-by-course basis.

Transcript evaluation may take up to 12 weeks so request evaluation as EARLY as possible.

You can check the outcome of your transfer credit evaluation by logging onto myNOVA and accessing your transfer credit report on the Student Information System (SIS). 

myNOVA > SIS > Self Service > Transfer Credit > View Transfer Credit Report

Send an email to the College Records Office at Be sure to include your name, student ID number, MEC program you are applying to, and what your question is or list what specific courses you would like re-evaluated.

Transfer credit evaluation can take up to 12 weeks and is completed by the College Records Office. You must allow enough time for your evaluation to be completed, and all transfer credit must be posted to your record before you apply. Otherwise, you accept the risk of your application being rejected if you apply before the evaluation is completed. The CRO cannot rush evaluations, and MEC staff cannot evaluate transcripts. Your application will not be held pending completion of transfer credit evaluation and will be rejected for missing requirements.


The Test for Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) is a timed, computer-based assessment used by schools nationwide to evaluate the academic preparedness of students seeking to gain admission to medical education programs. If your program requires the TEAS, you must complete it and meet any minimum score requirements to apply.

More Information: MEC TEAS Test

Yes. All applicants to programs that require the TEAS must complete it and meet any minimum score requirements.

More Information: MEC TEAS Test

  • Refer to the Take TEAS Test step on the How to Apply to the Health Sciences and Nursing programs website.

TEAS scores are good for 3 years. Remember to verify the dates you took the exams to make sure your scores have not expired.


Medical education programs include student learning experiences called “clinicals” that are held at a local hospital, doctor’s office, or other patient care facility. Due to the limited number of available  sites, each program can only accept a specific number of students each year and require a separate application process. There are prerequisites that must be met to apply, and some programs are first-come/first-served while other programs are competitive. Interested students should attend the program Information Session to find out the requirements and how and when to apply.

All students who have met the required prerequisites may apply to the programs. However, international and out-of-state students should note the following priority admission policy:

"Due to limited laboratory, classroom and/or clinical space, certain Health Sciences and Nursing programs have restricted enrollment. As stated in the NOVA catalog, Health Sciences and Nursing students are accepted on either a competitive or a first-come/first-served basis with priority given to:

  1. Legal residents domiciled in the cities and counties supporting the College
  2. Other Virginia legal residents
  3. Out-of-state applicants
  4. International students requiring Form I-20

Category 1 may include areas in which clinical affiliates have contractual agreements with NOVA or students from other VCCS service areas whose community college does not offer the specific program."

This policy is established by the Virginia Community College System and is stated in section 6.0.5 Admission Priorities of the VCCS Policy Manual which reads:

"When enrollments must be limited for any curriculum, priority shall be given to all qualified applicants who are residents of the political subdivisions supporting the college and to Virginia residents not having access to a given program at their local community college, provided such students apply for admission to the program prior to registration or by a deadline established by the college.  In addition, residents of localities with which the college has clinical-site or other agreements may receive equal consideration for admission."

No, these clinical requirements are not required to apply to the program.

Yes, you may take any of the general education electives before applying. Some programs award points in the competitive admission process for taking these courses early. However, students planning to use financial aid should be aware that this may reduce the amount of aid received during the program.

Yes. In addition to the college requirements, the Virginia Board of Nursing requires proof of completion of high school algebra, high school biology, and high school chemistry with a C or better grade, and proof of high school graduation from all applicants. It does not matter if you attended college or have a previous degree. You must attach a transcript showing that you completed these high school requirements. If you attended high school outside of the United States, your transcript must be evaluated by an international evaluation agency before submitting it to NOVA. If you do not attach proof of completion of the high school requirements, your application will be marked as incomplete.

Refer to the Nursing Application Checklist on the Nursing website for more information.

Each competitive admission program has its own admission criteria that is reviewed and determines how candidates are ranked. The applicant pool can be very different from year to year so what is considered a competitive score one year can be less competitive the following year. It depends on the number of applications received, the number of students that can be accepted, and the quality of the applications received for that admission cycle. For the best chance of acceptance, applicants will want to focus on being as competitive as possible versus just meeting the minimum requirements to apply.

No. There are no wait lists for the Health Sciences & Nursing programs at MEC. If you are not accepted to the program, then you must reapply during the next open application cycle.

You may complete any of the general education courses within the program while you are waiting to apply. However, students planning to use financial aid should be aware that this may reduce the amount of aid received during the program. You may also retake any prerequisite courses to obtain a better grade to make yourself more competitive and increase your chance of being accepted to your desired program. If you have already completed the electives and have the highest possible grades, then you will have to wait for the next application cycle to apply.

Fill out and submit an online Health Sciences & Nursing application. You will need to know your myNOVA login to access the form. Be sure you also have all the additional documents to attach to your application if required by your program. Have the Information Session Code from the online or in-person Information Session that you attended. You will receive a confirmation email after submitting the application.

You should have already attended an Information Session for your program to learn about the requirements. It is important to familiarize yourself with this session since you are certifying you have reviewed it and agree that you meet the requirements when submitting your application. Codes may change every year, so it is important to always revisit the Information Session every application cycle if you do not apply right away.

Important! Enter the code EXACTLY as provided. Pay attention to spacing and capitalization. The Information Session Code field on the application is programmed to only accept the exact code.

  • Online Info Sessions: Online information sessions include the code in the online presentation. It may not always be at the end and may possibly be spoken instead of being displayed on the screen.
  • In-Person or Live Zoom Sessions: In-person or live Zoom information sessions may be required for some programs. The code for the application will be provided at the end of the session.
  • EMS Program: Contact the EMS Program Office at 703.822.6639 to get the EMS Program Information Session.

Submit an email to Include your name, ID number, program and screenshots of any error messages you are getting or provide a detailed description of the issue you are experiencing. Please do not call or email the College Call Center or the program office to report an issue. If you are facing a program deadline, your application may still be considered only if you followed procedure by sending an email to ApplyMEC by the deadline so your issue can be investigated.

Continue to check your student email account for status updates. EMS applicants should allow at least 10 business days. All other applicants should allow up to 8 weeks after the program deadline to receive an email that the application criteria has been verified. If you receive an email stating that further information or documentation is needed to continue processing your application, you must respond by the provided deadline. If you do not respond or take action to correct your application, it will not be forwarded to the department and will be rejected. Allow up to 12 weeks after the program deadline to receive final notification from the program.

There are 4 steps of application review:

Step 1 – review of application criteria
Step 2 – domicile review
Step 3 – ranking of applicants
Step 4 – final notification from the program

Allow up to 12 weeks after the program deadline to receive final notification from the program.

If an ApplyMEC advisor found that you have not met the application criteria, they will request further information. You will receive an email that your application is incomplete and needs additional attention. Your application is not rejected at this point. Your application could be incomplete for any of the following reasons:

  • missing course(s)
  • not having the minimum grade required
  • no transfer credit evaluation or the evaluation was submitted too late
  • not having a required attachment
  • science courses are too old
  • no proof of attendance at the required Information Session
  • not having the minimum required cumulative GPA

If you received the email before the program deadline, you have until that deadline to correct your application. If it is after the program deadline, you will be given a new date of when you must have corrected your application to still be considered. All applications initially put in the Incomplete Requirements queue will be reviewed again for the incomplete requirements. Applications that are still found to be incomplete will not move forward, and you will receive a final email that you were not eligible for the program.

If you feel that you received this email by mistake, follow the directions provided in the email to contact ApplyMEC. This is the fastest way to correct your application if a mistake was made.

If you received a final email after the deadline stating that your application has been rejected then you were not eligible to apply. Your application could have been rejected for any of the following reasons:

  • missing course(s)
  • not having the minimum grade required
  • no transfer credit evaluation or the evaluation was submitted too late
  • not having a required attachment
  • science courses are too old
  • no proof of attendance at the required Information Session
  • not having the minimum required cumulative GPA

If you did not respond by the deadline provided to correct your application or you were unable to correct your application in time, then you will receive a final email that your application has been rejected. You are welcome to reapply to the next application cycle once you have corrected the requirements that you were missing.

Program Questions

The programs at the MEC are intensive, and it is highly recommended that students work no more than 20 hours while attending the program. Any work schedules that students have must be arranged around the designated days and times for the lectures, labs, and clinical rotations for the program.

Students can use the current tuition rate and multiply this by the number of required credits for their desired program to find an approximate cost of the program. Program curriculums are available in the current college catalog. Tuition rates are subject to change. Additional fees are required for textbooks, uniforms and program patches, any required lab or clinical equipment, and any applicable licensure application or testing fees.


The program office will notify applicants of their admission status. It is the responsibility of the applicant to respond by the deadline to officially accept any admission offers and to attend the mandatory program orientation. Students who do not respond by the provided deadline or who fail to show for the program orientation will be replaced with another applicant. Allow up to 12 weeks after the program deadline to receive final notification from the program.

Students will be assigned a faculty advisor after being accepted to their program. Academic advising is available through Advising and Counseling office for students completing the prerequisites for their program.

No. You would have to apply to the program again during the next application cycle if you are unable to accept admission.

Acceptance to the Health Sciences & Nursing programs is not guaranteed even after meeting the minimum application requirements. Each program can only accept a specific number of applicants due to limited clinical availability. Programs that are first-come, first-served will accept applicants according to the date and time of their application up to the maximum number they can accept. Once this maximum number is reached then the program is closed.

Competitive admission programs will rank all applicants by their published competitive admission criteria and will accept students from this list up to the maximum number they can accept. If an accepted applicant decides to decline admission, then they are replaced by the next applicant on the list. If more applicants applied to a program then there is space, unfortunately, some applicants have to be turned away. There are no waitlists so applicants would have to attend another Information Session for any new requirements, and then reapply to the program in the next application cycle.