Master of Science, Advanced Practice Nursing

Purpose

 The Master of Science in Nursing Program educates professional nurses for advanced practice in nursing either as clinical nurse specialists in adult nursing, adult /gerontological nurse practitioners, family nurse practitioners or psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (family or adult) and provides a foundation for doctoral study in nursing. Students can opt for a dual track of study by adding a gerontological specialization to any of the advanced practice tracks.

Post-master's options are available in all tracks.

The curriculum has, as a basis, the integration of nursing science, concepts and theories from related disciplines, along with practice and research. Opportunity is provided to pursue individual interests with respect to clientele and health care settings.

Learning Outcomes

Expected outcomes of the program are designed to prepare graduates who will:
1. synthesize knowledge from nursing and related disciplines as a basis for advanced nursing practice across the lifespan;
2. implement roles of advanced nursing practice responsive to changing environmental forces;
3. integrate leadership skills, teaching and collaborative strategies to facilitate policy changes that augment health; 4. integrate and apply evidence based research to advanced nursing practice with individuals and populations across the lifespan;
5. utilize knowledge of political, economic and social issues in ethical and legal decision-making to resolve dilemmas of practice;
6. demonstrate a commitment to the advancement of professional nursing and to the professional growth of self and peers.

General Information

The Graduate program is designed for baccalaureate-prepared RNs, particularly those who live in rural or medically underserved areas of the upper Midwest. Whenever possible, clinical experiences are arranged at appropriate sites near the student's home. Eligibility for the master's degree requires satisfactory completion of a minimum of 42 semester credits for the Clinical Nurse Specialist track, 52 for the Adult/Gerontological and Family Nurse Practitioner tracks; and 55 for the psychiatric mental health tracks. All program requirements must be completed within seven years. Students who begin the program in the summer and who carry approximately 9-13 credits per semester can complete the program six semesters. Informational materials detailing aspects of the program is mailed to all applicants.

Format

The program accommodates working professionals and can be completed in two to three years depending upon the track chosen. Classes are conveniently scheduled and may be offered in the late afternoon, one full day format, or weekends. Some course assignments are done through innovative learning formats such as on line and other web-based technologies. It is recommended that students who wish to pursue a full time academic schedule work no more than 0.6 time.

Adult/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner (ANP/GNP) Track

The ANP/GNP track prepares advanced practice nurses who are qualified for advanced practice in adult and geriatric health care across the health continuum. This practice includes independent and interdependent decision making and direct accountability for clinical judgment. Graduate preparation expands the comprehensiveness of the adult nurse practitioner's role to include participation in use of research, development, and implementation of health policy, leadership, education, case management, and consultation. Nurse practitioners, primary care or specialty physicians serve as preceptors. A minimum of 52 semester credits are required for graduation: BIO 5125, Bio 5777, NSG 6605, NSG 6610, NSG 6614, NSG 6627, NSG 6633, NSG 6635, NSG 6639, NSG 6671, NSG 6677, NSG 6683, NSG 6687, NSG 8200, NSG 8675, NSG 8680.

Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) Track

The CNS track prepares nurses to be leaders who are clinical experts in adult nursing, provide direct patient care, and work in consultation, research and education. CNS practice focuses on three spheres of influence: the client, staff and organization. Clinical Nurse Specialists practice in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, private practice and other community based settings such as industry, home care and HMOs. In the CNS option, students have the opportunity to pursue individual interests with respect to adult clientele or health care settings. A minimum of 42 semester credits are required for graduation: BIO 5777, NSG 6605, NSG 6610, NSG 6614, NSG 6627, NSG 6671, NSG 6677, NSG 8200, NSG 8210, NSG 8211, NSG 8212, NSG 8675, NSG 8680
Program offered only when there are a sufficient number of students.

Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Track

The FNP track prepares nurses to be leaders who manage the primary health care needs of families, from infancy through adulthood. A family-centered approach to health promotion, disease prevention, and intervention in illness responses of individuals is emphasized. Nurse practitioners, primary care or specialty physicians serve as preceptors. A minimum of 52 semester credits are required for graduation: BIO 5777, NSG 6605, NSG 6610, NSG 6614, NSG 6627, NSG 6629, NSG 6633, NSG 6671, NSG 6677, NSG 6681, NSG 6683, NSG 6685, NSG 6687, NSG 8200, NSG 8675, NSG 8680

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP): Adult and Family Track

The PMHNP track prepares advanced practice nurses who are qualified to address the psychiatric and medical health needs of adults with serious mental illnesses, substance abuse problems, and/or common medical conditions related to those psychiatric and/or substance abuse problems. Community mental health promotion, as well as disease prevention and intervention are emphasized. Nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, psychiatrists, and other licensed mental health professionals serve as preceptors. A minimum of 55 semester credits are required for graduation: Bio 5777, NSG 6605, NSG 6610, NSG 6627, NSG 6629, NSG 6662, NSG 6665, NSG 6666, NSG 6667, NSG 6668, NSG 6671, NSG 6677, NSG 6678, NSG 6691, NSG 8200, NSG 8510, NSG 8675, NSG 8680

Gerontological Nurse Practitioner or Clinical Nurse Specialist (GNP or Gero-CNS) Track

The program is designed for students enrolled in NP or CNS tracks at St. Scholastica who choose to add the specialization of gerontology to their role thereby becoming eligible for dual certification as a GNP or Gerontological CNS. The Advanced Practice Gerontological track prepares nurses with advanced knowledge and clinical expertise in the care of older adults. Practice sites include clinics, outpatient settings, long-term care facilities, hospitals, and community-based settings such as senior housing of all types. Post-Master's Advanced practice nurses who have a master's degree as an NP or CNS can add this specialization to their current practice role. A certificate of completion is earned, qualifying candidates to sit for national certification. Gerontology Specialization Courses: NSG 6633, NSG 6635, NSG 6639, BIO 5125. Additional coursework may be needed based on previous master's degree.

Admission Requirements

Current Admission requirements can be found on the Graduate Admissions website.

Acceptance Categories

Full Acceptance: granted to those students who meet all admission requirements.
Provisional Acceptance: granted to those students who have not submitted all required materials but who otherwise have met the admission requirements. Students are allowed one semester to submit remaining credentials and are not eligible for Financial Aid until receiving Full Acceptance into the program.
Probationary Admission: granted to those students who do not meet the GPA requirements but who otherwise exhibit reasonable evidence to indicate their ability to do satisfactory graduate work. Students will be removed from probationary status after completion of 6 semester credits of satisfactory work in graduate courses. Students are not eligible for Financial Aid until receiving Full Acceptance into the program.

Transfer Credits

Students may apply transfer graduate credits they have earned from an accredited college or university toward completion of their St. Scholastica degree. A maximum number of six transfer credits can be applied. The transfer credit must have been completed no more than seven years prior to the date the St. Scholastica degree is completed. Forms to request transfer of credits can be obtained from the Graduate Studies Office. The College of St. Scholastica will consider transfer credits from students who:

  • Submit a Credit Transfer Application form. 
  • Submit an official transcript sent from the accredited institution. 
  • Submit the course syllabus, catalog or other pertinent descriptive information. 
  • Demonstrate course content is applicable to the enrolled program. 
  • Have earned course grade of 3.0 or better. 
  • Completed the course seven years prior to applying to the St. Scholastica program. 

Degree-seeking students planning to enroll in courses at another institution with the intent to transfer the credits to The College of St. Scholastica will need to send a written request and supporting course documentation to the Chair, Department of Graduate Nursing prior to enrolling in the course. Written approval will be provided if the course is acceptable for transfer.

Contact

Paula McGrew
Graduate Nursing Coordinator
The College of St. Scholastica
1200 Kenwood Avenue
Duluth, MN 55811
Phone: 218-723-6272
Fax: 218-733-2221
pmcgrew@css.edu