Feb 26, 2024  
2015-16 Graduate Bulletin 
2015-16 Graduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing

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Purpose Statement

The purpose of the Master of Science in Nursing Program is to prepare advanced practice nurses by expanding and refining a broad base of knowledge and skills of baccalaureate education incorporating the experiential background of the professional nurse. This purpose relates to the Mission of the University by providing professional education at the master’s level that emphasizes advanced academic preparation of specialized knowledge and competencies through the process of role mastery.

MSN Philosophy

The Master of Science in Nursing program extends and refines the knowledge and skills of the baccalaureate-prepared nurse while integrating findings from the sciences and humanities, biopsychosocial fields, genetics, public health, quality improvement, health economics, translational science and organizational sciences in order to provide care to diverse populations of patients in clinical and community-based systems.  Attainment of advanced knowledge and competencies occurs through the process of role mastery, moving from novice to expert, in order to provide nursing interventions that influence healthcare outcomes for individuals/families across the lifespan, populations, or systems. The educational process is guided by three foci: primary care, advanced nursing practice, and evidence based practice. Primary care emphasizes health promotion and health maintenance for individuals, families, and populations in addition to managing and monitoring acute and chronic illnesses. This diversity of care is patient centered and culturally appropriate with evidence-based goals and modalities of care. Advanced nursing practice is autonomous and focuses on knowledge and competencies for the specialized role of the family nurse practitioner. In this role, the advanced practice nurse functions independently, is accountable as a direct provider of care, and is an advocate for patients, families, caregivers, populations and members of the healthcare team. Inherent in advanced nursing practice is leadership in order to provide for high-quality nursing care, healthcare team coordination, patient safety and quality inprovement, and for understanding health care delivery systems assisting with indentifying the economic, ethical, legal, and political factors that influence health care. Advanced practice nursing involves self-evaluation for continuing scholarship, professional growth, and excellence in practice. Therefore. the advanced practice nurse is prepared to pursue doctoral education. Evidence based practice provides opportunity for integration of nursing research, primary care, and leadership with the science of nursing.

MSN Program Goals/Outcomes

  1. Prepare advance practice nurses who expand and refine a broad base of knowledge and skills from nursing and the biopsychosocial sciences to influence healthcare;
  2. Prepare advanced practice nurses who demonstrate mastery of expected national competencies including the abilities to assess, diagnose, and manage a broad scope of acute and chronic health issues in primary care;
  3. Prepare advanced practice nurses who continue as lifelong learners and who influence safe and quality healthcare through interprofessional team approaches, emerging technology, health policy, and ongoing role development.

Admission Requirements for Master of Science in Nursing, Post-Graduate APRN Certificate:

See Graduate Admissions  in this Bulletin for information regarding admission.

Admission Dates/Procedures:

See Graduate Admissions  in this Bulletin for information regarding admission dates and procedures. 

Program Requirements

In addition to the general degree requirements (see 7. Academic Policies and Procedures  and curriculum requirements noted below, the student must successfully complete the following: 

  1. A minimum of 39 semester hours of approved graduate credit including (please see specific NP track requirements):
    1. A minimum of 10 hours of MSN core coursework,
    2. A minimum of 19 hours of FNP core coursework
    3. A minimum of 10 hours of role specialization coursework.
  2. A clinical research project or thesis;
  3. A written comprehensive examination.


The Master of Science in Nursing Program Progression policy is the following:

  1. An overall Grade Point Average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale must be maintained.
  2. A minimum grade of B is required in each clinical course. If the average of either the didactic or clinic component of a clinical course falls below B, the lower grade will be awarded and will be considered failing.
  3. A minimum grade of C in all non-clinical nursing courses is required. Students may not earn a C in more than two courses (6 hours) and remain in the program.
  4. The failure to progress satisfactorily according to the above policies will necessitate that the student obtain readmission to the program through the Graduate Nursing Program.
  5. Readmission will be considered only once.
  6. Continued compliance with admission requirements such as criminal background checks and drug/alcohol screens.

Course of Study

The post-master’s (MSN-RN) option requires satisfactory completion of the APN coursework designated with an asterisk (*). The post-master’s (MSN-NP) option requires satisfactory completion of the role specialization coursework designated by a pound sign (#). The distribution of didactic and clinic hours is indicated in parentheses following total course credits in the course listing at the back of this bulletin. The ratio of credit to contact hours for the FNP clinical courses is 1:4.5.The M.S.N. degree requires satisfactory completion of the following courses:


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