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  • Master of Science in Nursing
  • Graduate Studies

  • Master of Science in Nursing

    Program Coordinator: Tracy Wright, PhD
    213 Lommen Hall, (218) 766-2336 or

    Graduate Recruitment PowerPoint
    Graduate Recruitment PDF

    The School of Nursing and Healthcare Leadership (SNHL) includes Nursing, Community Health, and Health Services Administration programs. The incorporation of the three programs into a single School represents an interdisciplinary approach to the teaching of health fields with the integration of nursing services, management practice, and community health programming.

    The SNHL faculty members believe that health is the maximized potential and well-being of individuals, communities, and societies. SNHL’s goal is to prepare students to promote optimal health along the continuum of life, from birth to death. Students seeking a career in the health care and service professions will have access to excellent programs and experienced faculty who prepare students for full professional roles.

    Program Description

    The MSUM Nursing Program offers a Master of Science (MS) with a major in nursing. This degree prepares registered nurses for having an emphasis in nursing administration and organizational systems leadership (NAOSL) or practicing as nursing educators (NED). The program builds upon the general baccalaureate nursing competencies and provides specialty education and leadership necessary to meet the education needs of graduate nursing students. Graduates will be better able to contribute to the advancement of nursing practice and to collaborate in clinical practice and research partnerships in education and service settings. The MS with a major in nursing provides two emphasis choices:

    • Nursing Education
    • Nursing Administration and Organization Systems Leadership

    All courses are offered online with monthly synchronous meetings using a virtual platform. Practica/experiential learning may take place in the student’s home area, if appropriate. Students collaborate with their advisors to select practica that fit their practice areas or populations of interest and the course objectives.  


    The graduate nursing program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Guidelines from national and specialty organizations were used to develop a curriculum that prepares graduates for certification examinations. MSU Moorhead is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of College and Schools at the Master’s degree level.

    Curriculum Components

    The curriculum includes graduate core courses, specialty track advanced practice courses, other nursing and support courses, clinical practica, and either a master's project or thesis. Students collaborate with their advisors to select practica that fit their particular areas or populations of interest. Clinical practica may take place in the students' home area if appropriate. The focus of the program is advanced nursing practice with an emphasis in nursing education.

    Admission Requirements

    1. BS or BA in Nursing from NLN or CCNE accredited university.
    2. Documentation of current unencumbered registered nurse (RN) license in the US.
    3. Cumulative local GPA (not including transfer credits) of at least 3.0 in undergraduate courses from institution awarding nursing degree.
    4. Complete “Application for Admission to Graduate Study” form.
    5. Completed “Nursing Application” form including:
      • 500 word essay describing professional experience and future professional goals
      • Three letters of recommendation (2 professional colleague references, 1 personal reference)
    6. Non-refundable $20.00 fee for first-time applicants to Minnesota State University Moorhead.
    7. Official transcripts from ALL colleges and universities attended.
    8. Non-MN applicants are not fully admitted until the Department of Higher Education in the applicant’s state of residence has approved distance education/online programs from the state of Minnesota. (Approval secured from key states – SD, ND, NE, MT, WI, IL, AZ, MO).
    9. *International students must contact the International Student Office at 218.477.2956. International students must hold a current work visa that will be valid throughout the course of study in the graduate program.

    10. *International Student Policy
      The Homeland Security Act of 2002 fundamentally changed the requirements for the international students who wish to study in the United States. The major change that affects an online program is that no more than the equivalent of one on-line/distance education class or 3 credits per session may count towards the ‘full course of study’ requirement. A full copy of the NAFSA (Association of International Educators) Advisory Manual is available in the International Student Affairs office [Chapter 3: F-1 Students; Section 3.20.7; Authority cite 8 C.F.R. SS 214.2(f) (6) (i) (G)]. Students are able to be admitted to this program if they have an active Work Visa. Students are unable to be admitted to this program if they have a Student Visa.

    Post-Admission Requirements

    1. Unencumbered RN license in state where clinical will be completed.
    2. Unencumbered RN license in Minnesota.
    3. Criminal background check upon admission (ACI) and annually (MN DHS), each indicating ability to provide direct patient care.
    4. Evidence of current immunizations and TB testing required.
    5. Professional liability insurance, if desired. Students are covered under the state institution liability insurance.
    6. Current CPR certification (health care provider or professional level).
    7. An inferential statistics course at the undergraduate upper division or graduate level must be taken within three years of the student registering for NURS 603 Intro to Research. This is to assure that the student’s recollection of statistics is timely and useful as he/she begins application of the knowledge in studying the research process within his/her own thesis work.

    Degree Requirements

    1. The NED emphasis must be completed under Plan A (thesis) and the NAOSL may be completed under a Plan A (thesis) or Plan B (project).
    2. Program must be completed within seven (7) years.
    3. Students progress at a part-time rate; since most students are also employed in nursing practice.
    4. A maximum of 9 graduate semester credits from nursing, all of which must be related to the program, may be transferred from other appropriately accredited colleges or universities with the consent of the Graduate Nursing Program Coordinator. The transfer credits must be no older than seven years by the time of curriculum completion and carry a grade of B or better.
    5. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required to continue and graduate from the program. If the GPA falls below 3.0, the student is placed on probation for the next semester in which courses are taken. If the GPA remains below 3.0 at the end of the next semester, the student is withdrawn from the program. No more than two courses with a grade of C (including C+ and C-) may be applied to the program of study.
    6. Successful oral examination of the student by the candidate's committee based upon and following completion of the thesis.

    Course Requirements (32 Credits)

    NURS 600 Theoretical Perspectives of the Discipline (3)
    NURS 603 Introduction to Research, Data Analysis and Informatics (2)
    NURS 604 Advanced Nursing Research and EBP* (4)
    NURS 606 Health Care Delivery Systems, Policy and Financing and Leadership (3)
    NURS 608 Transcultural and Social Perspectives (3)
    NURS 609 Advanced Pathophysiology (4)
    NURS 610 Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (3)
    NURS 611 Advanced Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy (4)
    NURS 612 Advanced Health Assessment (3)
    NURS 689 Thesis Seminar (1)
    NURS 699 Thesis for Nursing (2)

    Specialty Courses for Nurse Educator

    NURS 622 Teaching: Technology and Information Management (3)
    NURS 623 Nurse as Educator (3)
    NURS 627 Program/Curriculum Design and Evaluation (3)
    NURS 642P Advanced Nurse Educator Practicum I (2)
    NURS 643P Advanced Nurse Educator Practicum II (2)

    Specialty Courses for Nurse Administration and Organizational Systems Leadership

    MHA 618 Healthcare Law and Ethical Decision-Making (3)
    MHA 638 Healthcare Information Systems (3)
    ECON 6XX Healthcare Economics (3)
    MBA 641 Human Resources Management (3)
    NURS 706 Organization and System Leadership (4)
    NURS 644P (Nursing Adm & Org Systems Leadership Practicum I (2) (100 clinical hours)
    NURS 645P (Nursing Adm & Org Systems Leadership Practicum II (2) (100 clinical hours) (Foci: Nursing Administration in Long-Term Care, Ambulatory, or Public Setting)

    Additional Information