There are a number of top accredited top nurse practitioner Schools that are offered all over the country, through universities, four year colleges and online schools. These nurse practitioner programs are suitable for any RN that’s interested in continuing their education with a master’s degree, or for those individuals who are interested in increasing their professional responsibilities or career options. These programs will build upon a person’s knowledge of the healthcare industry and will provide students with the skills and education that’s necessary in order to effectively manage medical conditions including injuries and infections. Often, an NP will have expertise and training to perform many duties that are commonly offered by a licensed primary care MD.
The Master’s Degree in Nursing
A nurse practitioner will need to earn a master’s degree in order to obtain licensure in this field. Most NP programs will last between one to two years and will be designed to build upon previously gained knowledge of the nursing industry. These programs will often require that a student focus on one specific specialty area, such as geriatric care, acute care, pediatrics or family medicine. A program will also teach students how to provide patient care by performing, interpreting and ordering diagnostic tests, taking comprehensive medical histories and executing and developing treatment plans. Master’s programs will prepare a graduate to take state licensing exams, as well as national certification exams, which are administered by the AANP or the ANCC.
All aspiring NPs will need to first complete a BSN program before being eligible for enrollment into a master’s degree program. A student may first need to complete an associate’s degree or certificate program in nursing, in order to gain field experience before going on to complete a bachelor’s degree.
All individuals that apply to NP programs will also need to be registered as licensed RNs. Typically, these individuals will also need to prove that they’ve worked a minimum of two years as nurses before they apply.
Core Nurse Practitioner Classes
The classes that are included in a master’s program will involve both traditional classroom learning as well as mandatory clinical rotations. Some of the course topics involve nursing and research theory, clinical diagnoses, pathophysiology, patient assessment, pharmacology, nursing management, primary family care and patient interaction and documentation.
The career opportunities for NPs are expected to increase by more than twenty-five percent in the next six years, according to the BLS. This is due to NPs being able to perform many of the same procedures as an MD, at a fraction of the cost, which makes them an attractive alternative in rural areas.
Top Nurse Practitioner Schools
The state of California has over thirty schools that offer accredited NP programs. A student in California can gain more advanced training through top Msn and post-MSN certificate programs that can lead to licensure as an NP. After a student graduates they will need to pass a national certification exam before obtaining licensure. The post-MSN programs will allow RNs with a master’s degree in nursing to become NPs. Some of these programs will allow a student with an MSN in a related area to enroll. Master’s degree program graduates that wish to continue with their education can enroll in a DNP program.
Cal State University offers a master’s degree program that will train the aspiring pediatric or family NP. The curriculum for both of these programs will emphasize promotion, maintenance and health assessment, in addition to patient education. Online master’s degree programs are also available at this school.
California State University in Fullerton offers an MSN program with specializations in nurse midwifery and women’s health. The classwork in both programs will cover such topics as pharmacology, women’s health assessment, disease prevention and pathophysiology. Doctoral programs are also available.
California State University in Long Beach allows students to choose from a number of concentrations such as women’s health, family medicine, pediatric care, mental health and adult and elderly care, through the schools post-MSN certificate programs. The class topics can vary, although the core classes in all areas of concentration will include research methods, human diversity, healthcare economics, pharmacology and pathophysiology. The post-MSN certificate programs are available in the same concentrations for students who already have obtained the master’s degree in nursing.
California State University in Los Angeles features an NP master’s program that currently offers concentrations in mental health, family medicine, acute adult care and women’s health. Post- MSN certificate programs in these concentrations are also available. A student studying any of these concentrations will learn about the role of the NP and the types of research methods that are used in the nursing field.
San Diego State University offers a master’s degree program with NP concentrations in nurse midwifery and women’s health. These two concentrations are also offered as a combined concentration program. Separately, these programs will require the student to complete forty-nine to fifty-four units. Individuals that are interested in furthering their education can also enroll in the school’s DNP program, after completing the master’s degree.