Why Choose the MSN Degree?
The graduate program in nursing is designed to provide a learner-centered curriculum that prepares nurses with the knowledge and skills needed for a variety of advanced specialty roles. The 37 credit degree is comprised of three components: a basic set of Nursing Core courses for 18 credits, a specialized advanced specialty role concentration for an additional 9 credits and the final 10 credits which include the practicum and experiences.
In the discipline of nursing, specialization occurs academically at the graduate level. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program, with specialty concentration options for advanced leadership roles, provides educational opportunities for bachelor prepared nurses who seek career mobility options in new and exciting areas of leadership within the profession. The graduate degree in nursing is intended to build upon the bachelor degree and provides the student with three specialty concentration options. The specialty advanced leadership concentrations all support professional roles that are in very high demand within the discipline of nursing at the present time. These focused advanced leadership role options include: nursing education, nursing administration, and nursing informatics.
The MSN program is designed to meet the needs of bachelor prepared nurses who want to further their educational growth and development in an accessible fully online program that accommodates the busy lives of working adults.
(Note: in the informatics major, a few courses may require a couple of Saturday meetings.)
The MSN degree offers three specialty concentration options, depending on the professional career goal of the graduate student:
Nursing Education: The current and anticipated shortage of nursing faculty reflects the general shortage in the nursing profession. The average age of current nursing faculty is 55, heralding a need to replace current faculty as they retire in large numbers over the next several years. If you have ever considered entering the academic setting as a nurse educator, this degree can be your first step to attaining that goal.
Nursing Administration: The demand for nurses with a grounded theory base in business administration continues to increase in the health care delivery system. The basic BSN program prepares nurses for entry-level positions in nursing or health care management settings. Those nurses who desire to hold executive positions in those same settings must possess the knowledge and skills that are critical to the administrative role in these tumultuous times in the health care industry.
Nursing Informatics: The area of nursing informatics is a growing specialty that many nurses are recognizing as an area of marked career growth in the past few years. This new practice area addresses the burgeoning need for experts who have a health care background, such as nursing, to manage the continuous expansion of information technology in the health care setting. The use of technology in the storage, dissemination and utilization of patient data has become a constantly evolving challenge for the health care industry.
To be eligible for the program you must be a graduate of a bachelor program with a GPA of 3.0 or higher, hold a current RN license, have two years of clinical nursing experience, and submit a writing sample, three letters of reference, a curriculum vitae or resume, official transcripts and a completed application form.
Graduation requires a minimum of 3.0 GPA. Students must earn a grade of 2.0 or better in each program course (No more than two courses with a "C" or lower.) Completion of all coursework and successfully passing a comprehensive exam is required within a 5 year time limit.
Debby Buck, Off-Campus Student Support
College of Health Professions
Ferris State University
200 Ferris Drive
Big Rapids, MI 49307
The MSN program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN.)
The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) publishes a variety of nursing and nursing education materials, including a list of nursing programs and information on student financial aid. For a complete list of ACEN publications, write for a career information brochure. Send your request to:
Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing
3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850
Atlanta, GA 30326