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What Is A Masters Degree In Nursing

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Prerequisite And Admission Requirements

The Benefits of Earning a Masters Degree in Nursing (MSN)

An MSN degree program is an intense course of study. Admission is typically competitive for the best programs. While pre-requisites vary, many traditional MSN programs require the following for admission:

  • A Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • BSN degree from an accredited program
  • Grade Point Average of at least 3.0 on a scale of 4.0
  • Current verified RN licensure in the United States
  • One year of relevant clinical experience as an RN
  • Letters of academic or professional reference
  • Completion of courses in areas such as human anatomy, human physiology, and microbiology within five years of applying to the program
  • Completion of statistics course
  • Requirement for standardized test scores such as GRE, MAT, GMAT, and MCAT varies by institution
  • In-person interview
  • Personal statement of professional goals

Is A Nursing Career In Your Future

If youre ready to answer the call to change lives as a nurse and you already hold a non-nursing bachelors degree, Marquette Universitys Direct Entry Master of Science in Nursing program in Pleasant Prairie could be just the opportunity youre looking for. Our Direct Entry MSN program blends online coursework and hands-on experience , allowing you to earn a masters in nursing in 1921 months.

Contact us today to find out of this second-degree MSN program is right for you, or fill out the form to have someone call you later.

Rn To Msn Bridge Program

Who is it right for? RNs that have an ADN or Diploma

If you have your Associates Degree in Nursing, or if you have a diploma RN, you can either earn your BSN and then apply to an MSN program, OR you can earn both your BSN and MSN at the same time, known as an RN-to-MSN bridge program.

These typically allow RNs to earn their MSN about a year sooner than the traditional route.

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Why A Traditional Msn Degree

As a BSN-educated nurse, youre prepared with the clinical skills and knowledge base you need to practice in hospitals and other healthcare settings. This allows you to gain valuable career experience as you consider options for specialization at the graduate level.

A traditional MSN degree allows you to take the next step and continue a systematic approach to expanding your education and expertise with the option to specialize. Traditional MSN programs provide a generalist degree or one of several specializations in a wide range of clinical and non-clinical areas. A masters level program is going to prepare any of these nurses with advanced specialty knowledge and skills to navigate in an area of nursing expertise, says Kathleen Poindexter, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF, president-elect of the National League for Nursing , and assistant dean of undergraduate programs and faculty development and associate professor in the College of Nursing at Michigan State University. An MSN generalist degree will still give them the advanced type of skills needed to navigate our currently very complex healthcare environment.

What Does Msn Mean In Nursing

Best Types of Nursing Degrees

An MSN degree is designed for nurses who want to land educational, management or administrative positions such as a nurse educator, clinical nurse specialist, director of nursing, nurse-midwife, or nurse practitioner. The program prepares nurses to work in various settings: hospitals, community agencies, schools, industry and businesses, academic nursing programs and so on.

Getting an MSN in the medical field offers plenty of opportunities and benefits, but comes with major responsibilities.

Any advanced position in health care means you have to make use of your clinical diagnostic and treatment expertise to care for patients, or your science and technology skills to manage huge amounts of patient data.

You could also have a major role as a highly qualified educator training nursing staff or specialize within a certain area like midwifery, psychiatric, oncology, pediatrics or neonatal nursing. The educational route deserves more attention in particular because graduates can choose to become nursing school faculty because there is a nationwide shortage.

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Potential Drawbacks Of Getting Your Msn

While masters degrees in nursing will instill the skills needed to work across a variety of healthcare settings, they are notoriously stressful programs. Students may experience sensations of burnout, feelings of isolation, helplessness and depression. Check with your program to see what resources are available to help in these situations.

Another potential drawback to pursuing an MSN degree revolves around the cost. According to U.S. News & World Report, the cost of a Master of Science in Nursing is typically within the range of $35,000 and $65,000. In comparison, some associate degree programs can cost as little of $6,000.

Individuals who are worried about the amount of money an MSN degree demands should also think about the time commitment involved. When it comes to preparing for a masters in nursing, studying is often considered a full-time job.

Though this pursuit may lead to more earnings down the line, it might require students to step away from full-time working positions.

Master Of Science In Nursing Faqs

A specialty track is a concentration. You must select one of seven specialty tracks in the MSN degree program . When you graduate, you will earn a Master of Science in Nursing degree with the specialty of your choice. Specialty track availability varies by state. See which tracks are available in your state.

It is possible to change MSN nursing specialty tracks within all non-nurse practitioner tracks . If you wish to change tracks, we recommend that you do so while you are in your core courses because credits completed in the original specialty track will not transfer to a different specialty track. Switching into the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner or the Family Nurse Practitioner specialty track is subject to Dean approval and availability.

Students who enroll in the Accelerated MSN Options will not be eligible to transfer to the traditional online MSN program.

Your admissions representative can help identify if you qualify for tuition savings through a partnership with your employer, community college or association. Alternatively, you may qualify for a scholarship or grant for the online nursing masters program. Call 877.751.5783 or request more information to learn more about financial assistance.

  • You have participated in at least two coaching calls with the Experiential Learning Coordination Team
  • You can document at least five sites that have denied your practicum requests
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    Get The Required Licensing

    Knowing the requirements for nursing licensure in your state can ensure that you dont waste your money on a traditional MSN program that you cant apply to licensure requirements there. If youre pursuing a traditional MSN, its likely that youve already passed your states NCLEX with your BSN but you may need an additional license to practice as an APRN there.

    Complete Your Pmhnp Coursework


    Once youve settled into a PMHNP program, its time to dive into your coursework. At Rasmussen University, PMHNP students can expect a rigorous slate of courses designed to develop their advanced practice nursing skills. This includes courses like:

    • Foundations of PMHNP Practice
    • Psychopathology and Neurobiology of Mental Health Disorders
    • Psychopharmacology
    • Psychiatric Mental Health Treatment Modalities

    Additionally, PMHNP students will complete 630 clinical hours in four practicum experiences focused on the following: pediatrics and family, adults, aging adults and a specialty focus area of their choosing under the guidance of an experienced preceptor.

    The clinical practicum is students opportunity to see where the rubber meets the road in psychiatric nursing, says Dr. Hamilton. Practicum experiences underscore for students where the evidence-base they learn actually worksand where there are vulnerabilities or failings in the science or the system in which we practice. The experience is humbling, empowering and eye-opening.

    Dr. Hamilton notes that these experiences usually leave students with a new sense of pragmatism and empathy for those who are in their care. These practicum experiences can also provide unexpected career claritysomething Dr. Hamilton experienced personally.

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    What About Licensure Or Certification

    Once you’ve completed a nursing program, you must first pass the National Council Licensure Examination through the National Council of State Boards of Nursing before you can begin working as a nurse. Certification is not a requirement, but can improve your employment opportunities, particularly when you’re specializing in a specific area of nursing. The American Nurses Credentialing Center offers various nursing specialization certifications.

    Prepare For And Obtain Board Certification And Licensure

    With coursework completed, the next essential step will be to obtain the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner-Board Certified credential through the American Nurses Credentialing Center. This requires passing a 175 question exam covering the following topic areas:

    • Scientific foundation
    • Psychotherapy and related theories
    • Ethical and legal principles

    With board certification complete, youll also need to apply for state licensure and meet all other requirements, like a criminal background check.

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    Why Do Nurses Get Msn

    These are many reasons why aspiring or current RNs choose to complete a masters in nursing:

    New career opportunities

    Getting your MSN offers you a career with many possibilities. Thus, you get higher chances of landing an impactful position in prestigious medical facilities or related organizations. Many health care settings are in dire need of new leaders, managers and nurse experts to lead or educate teams while offering the best patient outcomes. Moreover, an MSN helps you pursue your passion for helping others and focus on one type of nursing to make a difference in the long run.

    Higher salary and professional satisfaction

    Gaining advanced knowledge, experience, and skills suitable for leadership, educational or management role come with a better income and the chance to work with renowned institutions. It is worth knowing that most of the MSN-level positions in healthcare are among the top highest-paying occupations in the world.

    Flexible and fast MSN programs to choose from

    It is well known the demand for nurses is on the rise, which means a demand for APRNs is on the rise, as well. So its no surprise there are many flexible ways to learn, educate yourself and earn an MSN degree no matter where you are at in your career.

    Take a glance at the skills and education you need to advance your nursing career

    What Is An Msn Degree

    degree chart

    What is an MSN Degree?

    What is an MSN degree, and how useful is it for professional nurses? A Master of Science in Nursing degree is the masters-level postgraduate degree in nursing. Nurses who pursue an MSN degree will already have completed their Bachelor of Science in Nursing and will often already have practiced as an RN.

    Types of MSN Degrees

    What is an MSN in nursing? While an MSN program is the only masters-level degree in nursing, there are many different program specialty tracks that are offered. These tracks allow nurses to specialize in different leadership areas of nursing, including advanced practice registered nurse . They also provide education that is specific to a certain nursing career path.

    Some of the specialty tracks offered with an MSN degree include:

    If youre unsure of which specialty track is right for you, you can partner with our admissions team to discuss your career goals.

    Options With an MSN Degree

    The MSN degree program prepares nurses to serve at one of the highest levels of nursing and enables them to help develop new roles or serve in niche healthcare roles that RNs who have only completed their baccalaureate education would not be suited for.

    Masters in Nursing Requirements

    The MSN requirements for entry vary depending on the MSN program. Chamberlains MSN requirements include:

    MSN Opportunities with Chamberlain

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    Why Should I Start My Nursing Career With An Msn Vs A Bsn Degree

    Regardless of whether you earn a BSN, MSN or even an ADN , you must sit for the NCLEX in order to practice as a registered nurse.

    However, that is not at all to say that these three degrees provide the same level of professional preparation or value especially when you take into account opportunities for future growth. Thats where the benefits of a masters degree in nursing really become obvious. To understand why this is, one need not look further than the fast-changing healthcare landscape.

    What Is The Difference Between A Bachelors In Nursing Degree And A Masters In Nursing Degree

    • Degree Finder

  • Highest Paying Science Careers
  • If youre planning for a future in the field of nursing whether youre already a nurse or still a student then you might have questions about advanced degrees. In particular, aspiring and current nurses may wonder whether a bachelors or masters degree program is right for them. These programs have different admissions requirements, cover different coursework and prepare students for different roles. Before jumping into any degree program, its a good idea for nurses and prospective nurses to spend a little time learning more about these education options and thinking about which one best fits their goals.

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    Psychiatric & Mental Health

    Psychiatric-mental health nurses treat patients of all ages with mood and personality disorders, which can include bipolar disorder, dementia, depression, and schizophrenia, to name a few examples. More so than most other types of nursing, psychiatric-mental health nursing requires the development of a therapeutic relationship between the caregiver and patient. Psychiatric and mental health nurses have expertise in being able to empathize, provide support, and demonstrate respect for the patient. While this type of nursing can be administered by an LPN/LVN or RN, obtaining a masters degree in nursing and becoming an advanced practice registered nurse allows one to practice independently, offer direct care in a variety of settings, and prescribe medicine.

    Job prospects are very good to excellent and Job settings include: Private practices, psychiatric and mental health treatment centers, hospitals, public health organizations, educational institutions, home health care agencies.

    PMHN students are typically required to meet the following qualifications:

    • Hold a current and active RN license
    • Have a minimum of 2,000 hours of clinical practice in psychiatric mental health nursing
    • Obtain at least 30 hours of continuing education in psychiatric mental health nursing

    A PMHN is typically responsible for the following job duties:

    Benefits Of Having A Masters In Nursing

    An international perspective on studying a masterâs degree in nursing or midwifery

    There are many benefits of having a masters in nursing. Now that you have accomplished your nursing degree, you may wonder why you would ever bother going back to college to earn your masters degree. Im sure you remember all the countless hours you spent studying, doing laps, interning in those papers at all hours of the night.

    Hopefully, you also have some good memories of your education and how well it prepared you to succeed as a nurse. Earning a Masters degree can benefit your career in nursing in many ways should you decide this is your path to improve your career.

    You can earn a Masters degree without having to quit your job and attend classes either online or in the evening.

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    What Makes The Program Unique

    The School of Nursing has been a leader in knowledge development and scholarship in nursing for almost 100 years. Our master’s program alumni are making an impact at local, national, and international levels.

    Although we have one of the largest graduate nursing programs in Canada , we offer graduate students an experience as part of a community of scholars characterized by diversity, mutual respect, and integration. Students are making significant contributions to knowledge development through their research projects.

    Our MSN program has long been reviewed and assessed by the British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives and many licensing boards across North America and accredited by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing.

    How To Become A Registered Nurse

    Becoming a Registered Nurse requires completing a degree in nursing. While students can earn an Associate or Bachelor’s in Nursing degree, nurses who want to specialize in a certain area of nursing generally complete a Master’s degree in nursing with a concentration in their chosen specialization area. A Bachelor’s degree takes four years to complete and a Master’s degree takes about two years beyond the Bachelor’s degree. The training program includes nursing coursework, lab studies and clinical education.

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    Master Of Nursing Program

    The Master of Nursing program was established in 1975. Curriculum revisions introduced in Fall 2021 will ensure that our graduates continue to be positioned to influence and lead in evolving health systems. The program reflects health care trends and draws on the strengths of our outstanding academic faculty members.

    The MN program cultivates knowledge and skills that support learners to probe meaningful experiences in their professional lives and to analyze critical issues in health systems. Coursework exposes students to diverse schools of thought and scholarship complex health system influences on nursing practice and health outcomes approaches to knowledge development, synthesis, and translation and using nursing knowledge to improve healthcare delivery, promote health, and reduce health inequity. In the process, learners are empowered to find their own voice, articulate well-informed perspectives to diverse audiences, and actively shape the systems in which they participate and lead.

    During COVID restrictions, all University of Alberta courses were online for the 2020-2021 academic year. As the University reopens during the fall of 2021, our students, staff and faculty are gradually returning to campus. Nursing courses are returning to previous formats, which include both daytime and evening scheduling, part-time and full-time studies, and opportunities for blended/hybrid classes. Students must be available to participate in regularly scheduled classes and seminars.

    Which Nursing Master’s Degree Is Best

    How to Become a Nurse Practitioner: Degrees and ...

    The right nursing master’s degree depends on career and salary goals. APRNs generally earn the most, but fields such as nurse informatics or nursing administration offer opportunities to impact nursing practice and healthcare systems. Public health and community health nurses help build healthier communities and assist society’s most vulnerable members.

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