Category Archives: FAQ

High School Transcripts Required for MEC Admission Applications: Request Them Early!

As we begin the next semester, it is an ideal time to reflect upon your educational goals and to think about how you will go about achieving them to make this your most successful academic year yet. For those of you interested in applying to one of our Medical Education programs, one of the success strategies you may wish to employ is early preparation of your Health Science or Nursing application package, which for some means gathering a few extra required documents.

If you were not already aware, a couple of the programs offered at the Medical Education Campus require that students submit additional documentation along with their admission application. In particular, Dental Assisting and the Nursing program require submission of your high school transcript showing the date of graduation and, for Nursing, specific coursework with final grades. To answer a common question we advisors frequently hear: Yes, submission of a high school transcript for these programs is required regardless of whether or not a student has previous college credit or has already earned a college degree.

Because there could be a delay in obtaining your high school transcript for any number of reasons, you will want to begin this process early so that you will have a complete admission package when it comes time to apply to your program of interest. Those of you who have graduated from a high school within the United States will want to begin by contacting your high school and inquiring about the steps you need to take to have an official transcript mailed to you or how you may be able to pick one up. If you earned a GED and need to request the certificate, you will want to contact the Department of Education in your home state and request an official copy be mailed to you.

For international students, you will also want to begin by contacting your high school and inquiring about the steps required to request and obtain an official transcript; however, prior to submitting them to NOVA, you will need to have them translated and evaluated for U.S. equivalence by one of the agencies listed in our FAQ.

*NOVA will only accept international high school transcripts that have been translated and evaluated.

We understand that in some situations it may be difficult to obtain your international transcripts and to have them evaluated for U.S. equivalence. Under these circumstances, a student will need to take the General Education Development (GED) test and, if you are applying for admission to any of the Nursing tracks, complete the following courses either by taking classes at NVCC or through Nursing ABC: BIO 101, CHM 101, and MTH 154 or higher.

Further information about studying for and taking the GED is available at http://www.vaged.vcu.edu/

To explore the opportunity to complete courses through Nursing ABC, please visit: www.nursingabc.com.

Some of these high school level course requirements can be met by taking the College Board CLEP Exam. Free preparation courses for the College Board CLEP exam are located at www.modernstates.org

So, remember: plan ahead, prepare early, and make this your most successful academic year yet! Best of luck in all of your academic endeavors!

 

Getting Into your Program of Choice

Over the coming weeks, programs will begin ranking students and making their final admissions decisions.  Given the competitive nature of each of our programs, some will fall short of their goal.  We understand the pressures and demands that face many of our students.  Admission into a program can often be life-changing for a person seeking a better life for themselves and their family.

RANKING

Students are ranked based on a spectrum of indicators. Not surprisingly your performance on your prerequisite courses, specifically your science grades are the most critical factor for most programs at the Medical Education Campus. Other factors include your results on the ATI TEAS test.  Our post, “Am I a competitive applicant” delves into the competitive criteria for programs at the MEC.


Meeting Minimums

Having the minimum requirements for any program places a student on the margin. Meaning that if the applicant pool is competitive, they will be the first to be passed over.  Because our programs do not have wait-list, an applicant competes every year they apply.  If that student does not improve a grade, or a TEAS result or acquire more hours or complete co-requisite courses, they will not move themselves up on the rankings.

Applying without meeting the minimum requirements

Students who apply and do not satisfy the minimum entry requirements will be rejected automatically.  You may have an impressive GPA or TEAS results, but if you are missing a requirement or attachment, an application will be denied.

Visit our post on what might get your application rejected to learn more.

IMPROVE

If you were not accepted and are planning on applying again, ask yourself where was I weakest?

The categories that different programs look at can be distilled into the following list.

  • Grades
  • Test Scores
  • Co-requisite course completion
  • Clinical observation hours

Improving on one or all the above will increase your applications chance of acceptance in the next cycle.

 

Why your application might get marked ineligible

Applications are compared to the criteria established by a program by Student Services staff. If an applicant does not meet the minimum standards, an advisor will mark that application ineligible. This excludes that applicant from the ranking and pool of applicants that will be considered for admission into a program.  It is essential that an applicant satisfies all minimum criteria before they proceed with any application.

Reasons your application may have been flagged ineligible include:

A required prerequisite course was

    • not taken

OR

    • if taken did not meet the minimum grade requirement

OR

    • if taken at another college not transferred

OR

  • if taken at another college than not transferred as the required course ( student assigned BIO EEE for example)

OR

  • College Science course is more than ten years old

Failure to provide required documentation along with your application

    • Attaching ATI TEAS results TO the application
    • Attaching wrong ATI result to the online application
    • Failure to attach requested high school documentation (Nursing and Dental Assisting)
      • International High School Documents not evaluated by an evaluation agency such as www.ece.org or www.ierf.org
      • Required high school courses grades below C ( nursing only)
    • Did not submit OTA observation hours via the online application
    • Did not Submit PTA observation form via certified mail

Did not meet the minimum number of observation hours

For programs that require observation hours failing to meet their minimum will result in an application being marked ineligible.

Did not attend a mandatory in-person information session or provided wrong information session code

For programs with mandatory in-person information sessions, not having gone or not having gone within the last year, is grounds for being marked ineligible.

Did not meet a minimum testing requirement

  • ATI TEAS minimum was not meet for a specific program
  • minimum math placement scores not met

GPA below the minimum established by a program

  • GPA at last school attended and/or NOVA GPA below the established minimum.

ATI TEAS taken outside of applicable period

For Fall 2019 Nursing applicants TEAS scores must be from the period December 3rd 2018 to March 20 2019. Any scores from outside of that period will not be considered.

Test Scores are older than allowed for your program. Please check our ATI TEAS post for the time frames.

 

If your application was marked ineligible, it will have been for one of the above reasons. Students are invited to correct any errors they may have made and apply during the subsequent application period for their desired program of study.

Please review our FAQ to learn how to avoid any pitfalls that will prevent your application from being considered in the future.

You can learn how to be a competitive applicant here.

Physical Therapist Assistant Application

FAQ

The first priority period for the 2019 Fall Physical Therapist Assistant program opens March 15, 2019, and closes March 30, 2019.

Only submissions sent via the Online Health Science and Nursing Application will be processed.  Physical Applications mailed via certified mail will not be processed.

Attn: Student Services Room 202
6699 Springfield Center Drive
Springfield, VA 22150

You can access the Health Sciences and Nursing application HERE


Prerequisite Course Requirements

  • BIO 141 and BIO 142- Anatomy and Physiology 1&2 OR NAS 150-Human Biology with a grade of B or better
  • HLT 141 or HIM 111- Medical Terminology with a B or better
  • ENG 111 College Composition or higher with a B or Better

Observation Hours

In addition, you must complete a minimum of FOUR clinical observation hours with a PT or PTA.

Clinical Observation hours must be mailed via certified mail in advance of the deadline for the period you are applying to.

DO NOT OPEN AND SCAN OBSERVATION HOUR FORMS. They must be mailed in via certified mail.  Only Hours received by the priority period deadline will be counted. 


Testing Requirements

The program requires that you satisfy two different Testing requirements.

  1. Take and pass the VPT Math Placement test at the MT 154 level or higher OR complete developmental math to qualify you for MT 154 or higher OR transfer MT 154 or higher to the college.
  2. Take and pass the ATI TEAS exam with a minimum score of 50% in the English, Reading and Human Anatomy and Physiology subsection of the Science portion.
    1. It is important that a student submit their full results packet with their PTA application. Directions on how to download results can be found HERE. Failure to do so will result in a delay in the processing of an application.

Lastly, only students that have attended one of the mandatory in-person workshops within the last year will be considered for admission.


Attachments

The only attachment that should be included with your PTA Application is a PDF version of your ATI TEAS Results.  Please do not attach additional items unless specifically instructed to do so.

Competitive criteria can be found HERE

Am I a competitive applicant?

FAQ

Updated 5/28/2019

One of the most common questions that come into the office is, “Am I a competitive applicant?” The answer is almost always it varies. Some programs might accept all eligible applicants one year, and the next only have room for 10% of the qualified applicant pool.

That question is also tied to its sister, “Why was I not accepted.” Due to the limited availability of clinical rotations, our programs can only accept but so many students.  This will mean that many well-qualified applicants will apply, but not all will be admitted.  Students meeting that just meets the minimum requirements are the most at risk of not being accepted. Likewise, if you were a well-qualified applicant, but applied to a high demand program it may be that your domicile status placed you behind other students.

So how do you get in?

Some programs outline the criteria that are used to rank and select their students. Where available we have included the criteria used by a program. In general science courses and/or prerequisite courses and ATI TEAS scores are used to rank students. That, however, is not the case for all programs. Where available we have indicated a programs competitive criteria and source of information for your review.

Letters of recommendation resumes and personal statements are not used in the admissions decision for any program.

Program Competitive Criteria Number Accepted source
Dental Hygiene
  • Grades received in science courses
  • completion of general education courses
  • TEAS Results
  • Dental Work Experience
Approximately 32 2019 Information Session
Diagnostic Medical Sonography
  • The final grade in BIO 141, BIO 142, MTH 154 and PHY 101
  • Highest Scores of all attempts on the English, Reading, and Math sections of the TEAS
  • Additional points for current RT(r), RVT RDMS or RDCS licensure
  • 14 General
  • 6 Echocardiography
  • 6 Vascular
2019 Application Requirements
Medical Lab Technology
  • TEAS score
  • Work Experience Certification
    • AAMA Certified Medical Assistant
    • ASCP BOC certified Phlebotomist
    • NAACLS Approved Clinical Assistant
    • Prerequisite course grades
    • Completion of corequisites
    • MDL 100 Grade
Varies MLT Program Student Handbook
Nursing Applicants are ranked by prerequisite courses and test listed below

    • BIO 141
    • PSY 230
    • TEAS scores

In addition, they are assigned extra points for the  completion of their  general education co-requisite courses (not required for application) 

    • BIO 142
    • BIO 150
    • CST elective [229, 110, 115, 126]
    • Humanities elective
Varies Nursing Brochure 
Occupational Therapy Assistant
  • Grades in BIO 141 and BIO 142
  • The number of observation hours and/or work hours with an OT or OTA based on signed and dated form(s). Points are awarded after completing 25 hours or more.
  • Earned a Health Science Career Studies Certificate
  • Video Statement
Varies Information Session
Physical Therapist Assistant
  • Priority Period
  • Grades in anatomy and physiology
  • Grades in medical terminology
  • The Number of observation hours
  • Variety of Clinical settings for observation hours
Varies Information Session
Radiography
  • The final grade in BIO 141, BIO 142 and RAD 105
  • Highest Scores of all attempts on the English, Reading, and Math sections of the TEAS
  • Completion of  humanities, social science and HLT 141( or HIM 111 or MEdical Terminology ABLE exam)
40 2019 Application Requirements
Respiratory Therapy
  • Grades in BIO 141, BIO 142
  • GPA
  • Completion of a college level math course
  • Completion of co-requisite courses
25 Information Session

Admission Policy for Limited Enrollment Programs

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

Priority is 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.

Residency and citizenship/visa status will be verified using the current information on file in the Student Information System (SIS). Level I and II domiciliary decisions and appeals are reviewed and determined by Campus Registrar and Dean of Students. Applicants may be asked to provide additional information or documentation before acceptance to the program is considered.

How your domicile relates to rankings

If a program received enough eligible applicants from the first priority group, no students from the subsequent groups will be accepted. Regardless of how competitive they are otherwise.  As a result, your likelihood of acceptance as an out of state or “F-1” student drops as the applicant pool grows. However, there have been students accepted from every priority group among the programs offered at the Medical Education Campus.

 

 


All about the ATI TEAS at NOVA

Updated: 5/13/2019

FAQ

  • Preparing for the TEAS
  • How to pay to take the TEAS at NOVA
  • Minimum scores by program
  • Submitting your TEAS to NOVA
  • TEST OF ESSENTIAL ACADEMIC SKILLS BREAKDOWN  OF ATI TEAS

 

Preparing for the TEAS

The TEAS exam is a proprietary exam offered by the ATI Testing company. They have developed their own study resources for students to review. You can find them on their TEAS homepage. If you have taken the ATI TEAS test before, you can create a  My Results. Within the My Results area of your account, next to your score report, you can create a Focused Review. A Focused Review is an online review tool that aligns question topics missed and the relevant study materials for your review.

NOVA Libraries has a large assortment of TEAS preparation materials available for checkout.  Including the official ATI TEAS study manual.  These materials are available free of charge to NOVA students. You can also get some good tips from the testing centers “Tips for Taking the Test of Essential Academic Skills” document. 

Students also find it helpful to prepare by reviewing other exams.  The Medical Education Campus Tutoring Center has a list of excellent resources for students to help prepare them for an exam.

How to pay to take the TEAS at NOVA

If your program requires that you take the TEAS, visit the Medical Education Campus Application website. Click on “Health Sciences & Nursing TEAS Information” to learn about paying for and taking the ATI TEAS. This includes the form link to receive an access code required to register for the test at the MEC Testing Center.

You will only be able to register for the ATI TEAS at NOVA with this link.  Your request for an access code needs to be submitted 24 to 48 hours before when you plan on taking the exam.

Once you have the code you can pay for and register for the ATI TEAS test. This will allow you to come into the MEC Testing center to take the test.  The Testing Center administers test on a walk-in basis only.  Checking the MEC Testing Center website for hours.

 

What to bring on test day

Please arrive at the testing center with either your NOVA student ID card or government-issued photo identification. No other items should be brought to the testing center on the day of the exam.

When are results given

Results are printed and presented to the student immediately after the test is complete.  Score reports are also available online via the www.atitesting.com website.


Minimum scores by program

 

Program Sections
required
Minimum score
per section
Does it factor into the competitive ranking? SCORES
ARE GOOD
FOR
Department Document Retest waiting
period*
Retest Policy**
Dental Hygiene Reading
Math
Science
English
50%; higher scores are
more competitive, science
score will not be used in the
admission process
Yes Three Years DNH 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
Diagnostic Medical Sonography Reading
Math
English
50% per required section Yes Three Years DMS 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
Medical Laboratory Technology Reading
Math
English
No minimum score
required; higher scores are
more competitive
Yes Three Years MDL 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
Nursing Reading
Math
Science
English
73% Reading
65% Math
52% Science
62% English
higher scores are more
competitive
Yes Three Years NUR 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
Physical Therapist Assistant Reading
English
Science
50% in Reading and
English; 50% in Anatomy
& Physiology section of
Science; combined score of
50% on English, Reading
& Science
No Three Years PTA 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
Radiography Reading
Math
English
50%; higher scores are
more competitive
Yes Three Years RAD 1 month 3 times/year
(January – December)
* If retest date falls on a holiday or weekend, the retest date will be the following business day
** Applicants may only test up to 3 times in a calendar year regardless of testing location or program

Submitting your TEAS to NOVA

When  to submit your TEAS

Your ATI TEAS results must be attached to the application.  Therefore the deadline to take and submit the TEAS test is when you are submitting your application.

How to submit your TEAS

The new online application allows you to attach documents. You can download a copy of your report directly from www.ATItesting.com website.  Log into your ATI account, under the main menu select My Results, click on the exam attempt and then the download report on the top right of the website.

 

 

What it should look like

*PTA students should attach the full report. The anatomy scores are not on the main page. 

What it should not look like

 

Also not this

Submitting your TEAS

If you have already submitted an application, simply open the confirmation email that was sent to you, scroll down and click on “View Request”. This will allow you to open your application and attach your TEAS Results.

This will take you back to the application where you can attach more files.

Please note that when attaching documents to the application after your initial submission, you will not see a new submit button. Your application automatically updates when you click “Attach This File”.


TEST OF ESSENTIAL ACADEMIC SKILLS BREAKDOWN  OF ATI TEAS

ATI TEAS Format:

The ATI TEAS test is comprised of 170 questions set up in a multiple-choice format with four-option answers. Questions are designed to test the basic academic skills you will need to perform in class in the areas of: Reading, Math, Science, and English and Language Usage.

170


QUESTIONS

209


MINUTES
Reading Mathematics Science English and Language Usage
Number of Questions 53 36 53 28
Time Limit (Minutes) 64 min 54 min 63 min 28 min
Specific Content Covered
  • Key ideas and details
  • Craft and structure
  • Integration of knowledge & ideas
  • Numbers and algebra
  • Measurement and data
  • Human anatomy & physiology
  • Life and physical sciences
  • Scientific reasoning
  • Conventions of standard English
  • Knowledge of language
  • Vocabulary acquisition

source: https://www.atitesting.com/teas/teas-exam 

How to Get the Most from an Advising Session

FAQ

Most advising sessions begin with a simple question, how may I assist you today? Another common question is, what do you want to get out of NOVA? We want to know what purpose NOVA serves in your life and academic plans. This can convert a conversation from a recitation of the facts, to an exploration of your goals and avenues for growth and improvement.

Before contacting our office, or visiting we encourage you to become an active stakeholder in your future. Take the initiative and do your research. A successful student tends to be the one who is organized and anticipates their next step. In short, you must mise en place your academic life. The more research and preparation you do, the more you can get out of a visit with an advisor or counselor. Below are some tips to help you get the most of your session.

Know your NOVA ID/EMPLID number

Having your ID number or better yet your NOVA Card is an indispensable tool. Not only can you use it around campus it speeds up pulling up your account.

When possible write your questions down in a bulleted list

Writing your questions down provides a framework that ensures your questions are answered. Due to time constraints and the fact that there is a lot to go over, an advisor may not be able to cover everything in detail about a program. Your bulleted list signals to the advisors that you’ve done your initial research. This allows the advisor to focus on what you specialty don’t know or are in need of clarification.

  1. How do I transfer Credits
  2. What are the entry requirements for…
  3. How can I satisfy the math placement requirement

Bring your official external transcripts.

Students often ask us what courses they have left to take. While we encourage you to bring your external transcripts, we are not able to give you a list of courses that will or will not transfer. In some cases, a student can know what will transfer by visiting the College Records Office website and utilize their transfer guide. Preferably this would have been done before your visit to the office. If you have already transferred courses to NOVA, you should review your transfer credit center and compare the transferred courses to your program requirements.

Take Notes

You’ve done your research, brought transcripts if applicable and wrote your questions down. Your next step is to take notes during your visit. We generally have scrap paper and pens on hand for you to use. However, it is best that you keep a notebook, or note app on your smartphone at the ready. Again the more organized you are the more likely you are to succeed.

Ask Extra Questions

If something an advisor has said isn’t clear, ask again. Always ask for clarification if you don’t understand. Remeber that an advising session is a conversation, so its ok to go off script.

Follow Up

Part of being the advocate of your own destiny is being proactive. Take charge and constantly investigating options, program requirements and areas of improvement are wholly your responsibility. Checking in at least once a semester is ideal, especially if you are applying to a program more than a year out.

Things Change

Program changes can occur often with little warning. As such you must be vigilant and ready to act. When possible our office reaches out to students via email or on our blog and facebook pages, but it is impossible to inform everyone. When changes occur a student may feel frustrated, often because a course or courses are no longer required or used by a program. This is normally an issue when students are planning to join a program two or three years down the line. You will need to carefully weigh the risk of program changes when starting on an extended academic plan. this may require that you try and start a little sooner.

We hope that you get the most out of your interaction with our advising staff. As always feel free to send your questions and we will work to answer them as quickly as possible.