Online. On campus. On your terms.

SECOND


MASTER'S


DEGREE

The online Second Master’s Degree nursing program (formerly Post-Master’s Certificate) is designed for the Registered Nurse who already possesses a Master’s degree in Nursing but desires additional preparation in another specialty area. The program is structured to meet the needs and schedules of working Registered Nurses through the same distributive learning formats used in the MSN program.

Distinctive features of the Second Master’s Degree program are:

  • Instruction by caring faculty, many of whom continue to practice in their areas of specialization
  • Emphasis on Jesuit inspired values of knowledge, sensitivity, integrity, excellence, and justice
  • Pursuit of humanistic and ethical alternatives to solve contemporary nursing and health care problems
  • Critical reasoning vital to professional judgment and ethical decision making

PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for Second Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, AK, WY and AZ.

Application Deadlines:

Apply Now

Second Master's Quick Facts

  • $900 per credit hour
  • Accredited
  • 8-Week MSN Core Sessions: Each semester contains two 8-week sessions taken one after another (fall and spring only). You can accelerate your progress through the program by taking more than one class in each eight week session. Practicum Session lengths may vary. Courses outside of the MSN Core are 16 weeks in length.
  • Our online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
  • Rolling Admissions: Admission into the Second Master’s program is on a space available basis.
  • Gonzaga determines the students progression plan after receiving the entire application package

Program information is subject to change. Contact an Admission Counselor for further questions.

Second Master's Eligibility Criteria

The online Second Master’s Degree program (formerly Post-Master’s Certificate) is designed for the Registered Nurse who already possesses a Master’s degree in Nursing but desires additional preparation in another specialty area.

Prerequisite – A master’s degree with a major in nursing from an accredited college or university is required.

PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for Second Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, WY, AK, and AZ

Note: In special circumstances, individuals applying for admission may be permitted to take courses for one semester while the admission process is completed. The designated fee must accompany the application form. Admission decisions are based upon the applicant’s total profile and space available.

 

Second Master's Application Checklist

Applicants are able to upload all items listed below within the online application – except for transcripts which should be mailed in to the address listed below.

  1. A completed application form and non-refundable fee of $50 which can be paid at the end of your online application.
  2. Documentation of an earned master’s degree with a major in nursing from an accredited college or university.
  3. One official transcript from every college, university & nursing school attended which can be mailed to the address listed below.
  4. Current Registered Nurse license.
  5. MAT Test Score
    • You must take the MAT (Miller Analogies Test) and provide a copy of test scores to be admitted into this program. If you have taken the MAT within the last five years, you do not need to retake it, only provide a copy of your test scores. Gonzaga will also accept GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) scores.  Go to www.milleranalogies.com to find test information and testing centers.
  6. Current professional vitae.
  7. Typewritten statement describing:
    1. Interest in the Second Master’s Degree program and what he/she hopes to gain from the degree
    2. Professional goals
    3. Strengths
    4. Professional experiences
  8. Two letters of recommendation from individuals who can evaluate the applicant’s leadership, interpersonal skills, critical thinking and judgment, and professional practice (e.g., supervisor, professional colleague, professor). Recommendation letters will be uploaded through the online application portal by the recommender.

If you would like to petition for transfer credits from another program, please download a “Permission to Transfer Graduate Credits” form and submit it with an accompanying syllabus or course descriptions and official transcripts.

Mail Transcripts to:

Virtual Campus Admissions
502 E. Boone Ave.
Spokane, WA 99258-0068
509-313-6658509-313-6658

Program information is subject to change. Contact an Admission Counselor for further questions.

Why Gonzaga Nursing?

  • Quality – Gonzaga’s Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) graduates average 95% pass rate on the national nurse practitioner certification exams.
  • Ranking: Gonzaga University has been ranked one of the top universities in the West for 16 years by US News & World Report. In addition, The Princeton Review and Forbes Magazine have separately ranked us one of the nation’s best universities.
  • Accreditation: Our Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Additionally, Gonzaga University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) and is a member of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities.
  • Practicing Faculty: Gonzaga nursing faculty walks the talk. All nurse practitioner faculty still actively work in health care and provide students access to current health care policy issues, evolving trends, and real-world challenges facing the industry.
  • Accessible and Flexible: You have complete access to professors as needed through online discussion boards, email, and scheduled phone or skype appointments. Your coursework can be accessed from anywhere thanks to a convenient online environment. Participate in our open Student Lounge forum, which allows you to communicate with other students around the world about the course, the school, practical advice, or any other topic you care to discuss. This discussion forum is not graded, but is a great networking opportunity.
  • Jesuit: Gonzaga online nursing students experience the subtle, yet intentional infusion of the Jesuit mission of men and women for others. This humanistic approach creates a community that encourages an exchange of knowledge with and among each other—the faculty, the students, and the communities in which they live and work to impact change.
  • Systems thinking: Graduates of Gonzaga’s Nursing programs are prepared to engage in systems thinking to solve complex problems, translate evidence to improve health care practices and population health, lead quality improvement and change initiatives, and demonstrate effective intraprofessional collaboration.

Track Descriptions

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Track:

Our online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) Program will prepare you to:

  • Provide the full range of services that comprise primary mental health care in diverse settings with a variety of clients/patients
  • Provide clinical and professional leadership
  • Facilitate system improvements.

Clinical practice focuses on persons of all ages with diagnosed psychiatric disorders and individuals, families, or populations at risk for mental illness.

Second Master’s Students, PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for Second Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, WY, AK, and AZ.

The PMHNP core courses are offered online. When students begin their practicum courses, they are required to participate in one on-campus immersion during each of the four practicum courses and two on-campus immersions when taking the Advanced Health Assessment course for a total of 6 immersions. These immersions are two days in length. Students also have at least one site visit from a clinical faculty during two of the practicum courses. Additional site visits are arranged as needed.

Family Nurse Practitioner Track:

Our online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Program will prepare you to provide a holistic approach to primary care for individuals and families of all ages and to manage a wide variety of acute and chronic health problems. Family Nurse Practitioners work in independent as well as collaborative practice settings, such as:

  • Private practices
  • Urgent care centers
  • Health maintenance organizations
  • Clinics
  • Health departments
  • Student health centers
  • Clinics for the homeless or uninsured

The FNP core courses are offered online. When students begin their practicum courses, they are required to participate in two on-campus immersions during each of the three practicum courses as well as when taking the Advanced Health Assessment course for a total of 8 Immersions. These immersions are two days in length. Students residing in Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and Montana also have at least one site visit from a clinical faculty during each practicum course.  Students living outside of this four-state region are required to arrange for an additional on-campus day in conjunction with one of the immersions during each practicum course in order to complete the faculty site visit requirement.

Nurse Educator Track:

Our online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Nurse Educator program will prepare you to work as a nursing educator in the following positions:

  • Bachelor and associate degree programs
  • Health care staff development
  • Continuing education programs
  • Community education programs

You will learn how to create curricula and plan, revise, implement, and evaluate programs. Nurse Educators work in academic, hospital, and community-based settings to teach other nurses or to help educate the community on best practices or health concerns.

Students develop an area of clinical specialization as well as competency in curriculum development, teaching-learning strategies, and assessment of student learning. Particular emphasis is placed on tailoring content and practicum experiences to individual needs. Students have direct care practicum experiences in both acute care and community settings.

The Nurse Educator core courses are offered online. During their practicum courses, students learn strategies for teaching in the classroom, online, simulations, and in the clinical setting. Two  2-3 day, on-campus immersions are required.

Health Systems Leadership Track:

Gonzaga University’s online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Health Systems Leadership (HSL) Program incorporates knowledge from business, organizational behavior, quality improvement, health care law, and nursing to teach you how to devise innovative solutions to today’s complex health care problems.

This option prepares registered nurses to assume leadership and administrative positions in inpatient, outpatient, community-based, and academic settings. Students gain knowledge and competency in financial and human capital management, as well as strategies for responding to the ethical and legal issues encountered in administrative roles.

The HSL core courses are offered online. Practicum experiences are arranged by the student to meet identified learning needs. There is one required two-day, on-campus immersion during the last practicum course.

Second Masters

Required Courses or Equivalency: 19-22 Credits

NURS 563 – Evidence-Based Practice for Quality and Safety (3 credits)

This course provides learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for identifying and critically appraising evidence from qualitative and quantitative research traditions.  The emphasis is on the examination of the essential elements of evidence-based-practice, including the formulation of answerable questions to address quality improvement and safety in a variety of advance practice roles and the systematic search for research evidence that can be used to answer researchable questions.

NURS 523 Advanced Pathophysiology (3 credits)

This course seeks to assist learners to understand the cellular pathophysiological basis of disease. The content emphasizes cellular, genetic, and biochemical processes. Pathophysiological and physiological concepts form the basis for critical thinking and decision making when assessing and treating individuals with various disease processes.

NURS 524 Advanced Pharmacology (3 credits)

The course is designed to prepare the learner for an advanced practice role with prescriptive authority. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic principles will be applied to the pharmacotherapeutic treatment of disease. Medications will be studied according to therapeutic categories and drug classes within the framework of organ-based pathophysiologic disease state processes. Emphasis will be placed on the medications that are commonly used (top 200 drugs) in primary care settings with special attention given to evidence-based medication selection, patient education, and medication monitoring.

NURS 600 Advanced Health Assessment: Nursing Practicum (4 credits)

This course is designed to extend and refine the assessment skills of the Registered Nurse in preparation for an advanced clinical practice role. The student will learn to perform physical, developmental, mental, emotional, cultural, social, and family assessments. Students will review anatomy and physiology related to each biological system being studied. The course emphasizes in-depth techniques for assessing each body system in individuals throughout the life span. Lectures will focus on the use of a variety of health assessment techniques, including history taking skills, physical assessment, and other diagnostic assessment tools. Application of diagnostic reasoning and patient education to the assessment process will be included in the content. This course incorporates approximately 13 hours of supervised laboratory experience and 60 hours of precepted clinical experience. Laboratory and clinical components of the course focus on helping the student to develop communication, observation, and psychomotor skills and to document history and physical examination findings. Satisfactory progress in the clinical setting is required to pass the course. Two 2-day on-campus immersions required.

NURS 635P Primary Health Care I (3 credits)

Introduction course for MSN student enrolled in the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Option. Focus of the course is on the development of knowledge about the FNP role. Emphasis is on the role of the FNP in the care of individuals throughout the lifespan who present with select common and acute health problems in the primary care setting. The importance of performing comprehensive advanced-level health assessments, use of diagnostic reasoning, and the selection of appropriate diagnostic tests and pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic therapies is stressed. Incorporates content related to health promotion, family health, and practice management.

NURS 636P Primary Health Care II (3 credits)

Continues learning initiated in previous courses for MSN students enrolled in the FNP option. Emphasis continues on the role of the FNP in the care of individuals with select common and acute health problems in the primary care setting. The importance of performing comprehensive advanced-level health assessments, use of diagnostic reasoning, and the selection of appropriate diagnostic tests and pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic therapies is stressed. A focus on health promotions, family health, and practice management continues from the previous semester.

NURS 637P Primary Health Care III (3 credits)

Role of the Family Nurse Practitioner in the care of individuals with chronic and complex health problems who present for care in primary care settings. Emphasis is placed on the FNP’s role in performing comprehensive health assessments (including ordering and interpretation of appropriate diagnostic tests), diagnostic reasoning, and prescription of pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic interventions to individuals throughout the life span. Incorporates content related to advanced health assessment, health promotion, and family health. Consideration is given to the preparation of FNPs for practice, medical-legal issues, and concepts of practice management.

Family Nurse Practitioner Practicum: 10 Credits (600 hours)

NURS 605P Practicum in Primary Health Care I (2-4 credits)

This primary care practicum course requires the completion of 120-180 practicum hours with supervision by an approved Nurse Practitioner, physician, or Physician’s Assistant-Certified. Emphasis is placed on the application of concepts as well as on collaboration with a preceptor to analyze patient data, select appropriate diagnostic tests, develop a comprehensive treatment plan, and prepare legally sound documentation for individuals who present for care with common and acute healthcare problems. Requires attendance at two 2-day on-campus immersions.

NURS 606P Practicum in Primary Health Care II (2-4 credits)

This primary care practicum course requires the completion of a pre-determined number of practicum hours (120, 180, or 240) with supervision by an approved Nurse Practitioner, physician, or Physician’s Assistant-Certified. Emphasis is placed on the application of concepts from Family Nurse Practitioner didactic courses and the development of increasing independence in analyzing patient data, selecting appropriate diagnostic tests, developing comprehensive treatment plans, and preparing legally sound documentation for individuals who present for care in a family practice setting. Requires attendance at two 2-day on-campus immersions.

NURS 607P Practicum in Primary Health Care III (2-4 credits)

This primary care practicum course requires the completion of a pre-determined number of practicum hours (120, 180, or 240 corresponding to 2, 3 or 4 credits respectively) with supervision by an approved Nurse Practitioner, physician, or Physician’s Assistant-Certified. Emphasis is placed on the application of concepts from Family Nurse Practitioner didactic courses and the development of increasing independence in analyzing patient data, selecting appropriate diagnostic tests, developing comprehensive treatment plans, and preparing legally sound documentation for individuals who present for care in family practice setting. Requires attendance at two 2-day on-campus immersions.

8 Required Immersions (Campus visits)

Immersion Details

When student begin their practicum courses, they are required to participate in two-on campus immersions during each of the three practicum courses and when taking the Advanced Health Assessment course. These immersions are two days in length.

  • Students residing in Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and Montana also have at least one site visit from a clinical faculty during each practicum course.
  • Students living outside of this four-state region are required to arrange for an additional on-campus day in conjunction with one of the immersions during each practicum course in order to complete the faculty site visit requirement.
  • For students living outside of Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and Montana, one (of the two) on-campus visits will be 3 days instead of 2 in order to provide an alternative to an on-site faculty visit.
NURS 600 Advanced Health Assessment Nursing Practicum Two 2-day on-campus immersions
NURS 605P Practicum in Primary Health l Two 2-dayon- campus immersions and at least 1 site visit by faculty
NURS 606P Practicum in Primary Health ll Two 2-day* on- campus immersions and at least 1 site visit by faculty
NURS 607P Practicum in Primary Health lll Two 2-day* on- campus immersions and at least 1 site visit by faculty

 

Required Courses or Equivalency: 15-18 Credits

NURS 563 – Evidence-Based Practice for Quality and Safety (3 credits)

This course provides learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for identifying and critically appraising evidence from qualitative and quantitative research traditions.  The emphasis is on the examination of the essential elements of evidence-based-practice, including the formulation of answerable questions to address quality improvement and safety in a variety of advance practice roles and the systematic search for research evidence that can be used to answer researchable questions.

NURS 641A Nursing Leadership Development (3 credits)

Drawing on material from various social science disciplines, this integrated course focuses on research and models of leadership relevant to defining and achieving collective goals.

NURS 642A Information and Quality Management (3 credits)

This course focuses on the information management skills essential for effective nursing leadership in complex health care settings. Topics to be addressed include accreditation, clinical information systems, benchmarking, and quality monitoring.

NURS 643A Communication and Relationship Management (3 credits)

This course addresses the role of the nurse as a health care systems leader in developing and sustaining relationships with employees and other health care providers within complex health care environments. Course content will address communication strategies, relationship management, conflict management, and negotiation skills, and evaluation. Concepts related to legal, regulatory, and ethical aspects of employee hiring, performance evaluation, and termination will be reviewed. Consideration will be given to succession management.

NURS 644A Health Care Management: Financial Stewardship and Decision Support/Strategies (3 credits)

This course focuses on the financial management skills essential for effective nursing leadership in complex health care settings. Topics to be addressed include financing, administrative, financial and cost accounting systems, and budget development and oversight.

NURS 645A Legal, Regulatory, and Ethical Health Care Environments (3 credits)

This course addresses the role of the nurse as a health systems leader in legal, regulatory, and ethical considerations in health care environments. Complex adaptive systems is used as the framework for examining legal and regulatory constraints that affect care delivery, patient and employee rights and responsibilities, and quality management, including patient safety and risk management. Tension between legal and ethical guidelines will be explored.

Health Systems Leadership Practicum: 6 Credits (360 hours)

NURS 631A Health System Leadership Practicum I (1-3 credits)

This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting.

NURS 632A Health System Leadership Practicum II (1-3 credits)

This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting.

NURS 633A Health System Leadership Practicum III (1-3 credits)

This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting.

One Required Immersion (Campus visit)

Immersion Details

here is a required two-day, on-campus immersion during the last practicum course. Practicum experiences are arranged by the student to meet identified learning needs.

NURS 631A Health System Leadership Practicum l No on-campus immersions
NURS 632A Health Systems Leadership Practicum llPrerequisite: NURS 631A No on-campus immersions
NURS 633A Health Systems Leadership Practicum lllPrerequisite: NURS 632A One 2-day, on-campus immersion
Required Courses or Equivalency: 18 credits

NURS 563 – Evidence-Based Practice for Quality and Safety (3 credits)

This course provides learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for identifying and critically appraising evidence from qualitative and quantitative research traditions.  The emphasis is on the examination of the essential elements of evidence-based-practice, including the formulation of answerable questions to address quality improvement and safety in a variety of advance practice roles and the systematic search for research evidence that can be used to answer researchable questions.

NURS 601E – Pathophysiology, Pharmacology and Assessment I (3 credit)

This course provides students with an in-depth analysis of concept-based pathophysiological problems with emphasis on assisting learners in understanding the cellular pathophysiological basis of disease, the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics principles of its pharmacological treatment and the refinement of physical assessment skills used to form the basis for critical thinking and decision-making when treating individuals with various pathophysiological problems.

NURS 602E – Pathophysiology, Pharmacology and Assessment II (3 credit)

This course is a continuation of NURS 601E and provides students with an in-depth analysis of concept-based pathophysiological problems with emphasis on assisting learners in understanding the cellular pathophysiological basis of disease, the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics principles of its pharmacological treatment, and the refinement of physical assessment skills used to form the basis for critical thinking and decision-making when treating individuals with various pathophysiological problems. Prerequisite: NURS 601E

NURS 603E – Advanced Clinical Practicum: Acute Care (1cr/60hours)

Students complete 60 hours of direct care activities with a master’s prepared nurse in an acute care setting.  Particular emphasis is placed on safety, quality of care, and quality improvement activities.  Students are provided with the opportunity to integrate previous knowledge and develop proficiency in a focused area of acute care clinical nursing. Prerequisites: NURS 601E  OR NURS 602E

NURS 604E –Advanced Clinical Practicum: Population-Focused (1cr/60hours)

Students complete 60 hours of direct care activities with a master’s prepared nurse in a community setting.  Particular emphasis is placed on safety, quality of care, and quality improvement activities.  Students are provided with the opportunity to integrate previous knowledge and develop proficiency in a population-focused area of clinical nursing. Prerequisite: NURS 565 and  NURS 601E  OR 602E

NURS 652E Teaching Learning Strategies (3 credits)

This course explores strategies for clinical teaching, classroom/online teaching, and teaching in community settings. The course also addresses adapting content and teaching strategies for different groups of learners (e.g., students, health care consumers/patients, professional colleagues) and learners with different characteristics. The course will include discussion of the use of technology in the educational process. Students will use their clinical specialty area as context for course assignments.

NURS 653E Assessment of Student Learning and Evaluation (3 credits)

This course examines the basic principles of assessment of student learning, course and program evaluation, and accreditation. Practical guidelines for evaluation of learning in academic, clinical, and community settings are examined. The course includes content on test construction and evaluation, development and grading of written assignments, evaluation of clinical performance, and evaluation of personal teaching effectiveness. A particular focus of the course is outcomes assessment. Program evaluation and accreditation also are addressed. Social, legal, and ethical issues in evaluation and grading are explored.

Nurse Educator Practicum: 6 Credits (360 hours)

NURS 655E Nursing Educator Practicum I (1-3 credits)

The Nurse Education practicum course provides students with individualized opportunities to meet, at the advanced beginning/intermediate level, the core competencies for nurse educators that have been identified by the National League for Nursing (2005). This first practicum course focuses on beginning application of clinical specialty and educational role concepts in an education practice setting of one’s choice (60-180 practicum hours).

NURS 656E Nursing Educator Practicum III (1-3 credits)

This course is a continuation of the individualized nurse educator practicum experience, emphasizing further functional role development in a clinical specialty area and specific educational setting of choice (60-180 practicum hours).

2 Required Immersions

Immersion Details

During their practicum courses, students learn strategies for teaching in the classroom, online, simulations, and in the clinical setting. Two on-campus immersions are required (2-3 days each).

NURS 645E Nurse Educator Practicum in Clinical Setting (60-180 hours) One  2-3 day, on-campus immersion
NURS 646E Nurse Educator Practicum in Academia (60-180) One 2-3 day, on-campus immersion
Required Courses or Equivalency: 25-28 Credits

PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for Second Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, WY, AK, and AZ

NURS 563 – Evidence-Based Practice for Quality and Safety (3 credits)

This course provides learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for identifying and critically appraising evidence from qualitative and quantitative research traditions.  The emphasis is on the examination of the essential elements of evidence-based-practice, including the formulation of answerable questions to address quality improvement and safety in a variety of advance practice roles and the systematic search for research evidence that can be used to answer researchable questions.

NURS 523 Advanced Pathophysiology (3 credits)

This course seeks to assist learners to understand the cellular pathophysiological basis of disease. The content emphasizes cellular, genetic, and biochemical processes. Pathophysiological and physiological concepts form the basis for critical thinking and decision making when assessing and treating individuals with various disease processes.

NURS 524 Advanced Pharmacology (3 credits)

The course is designed to prepare the learner for an advanced practice role with prescriptive authority. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic principles will be applied to the pharmacotherapeutic treatment of disease. Medications will be studied according to therapeutic categories and drug classes within the framework of organ-based pathophysiologic disease state processes. Emphasis will be placed on the medications that are commonly used (top 200 drugs) in primary care settings with special attention given to evidence-based medication selection, patient education, and medication monitoring.

NURS 525 Advanced Psychopharmacology - optional (3 credits)

The Psychopharmacology course is designed to prepare nurse practitioner students in the practice of prescribing psychiatric medications. The course reviews the principles and theories of psychopharmacology, the neurochemical communication circuit, and the effects of various psychotropic drugs. The course examines the indications and actions of specific psychotropic medications in the management of the behavioral effect of mental illness. Recommended and required monitoring of medication effects and adverse effects will be emphasized.

NURS 621M Dynamic Care Formulation (3 credits)

Designed as an induction into advanced practice psychiatric-mental health nursing. The scope of practice and the advanced practice nursing roles are examined. Major emphasis is placed on understanding, assessing, and diagnosing major psychiatric disorders and other phenomena requiring clinical intervention, considering variations across the lifespan. Selected theories of human development and adaptation across the lifespan and as a basis for psychiatric disabilities are analyzed. The biological bases of psychosocial behavior and their implications in psychiatric care are explored. Concepts, principles, and clinical approaches to assessment, mental health promotion, and diagnostic decision-making in advanced practice psychiatric-mental health nursing are stressed. Completing clinical assessments and formulating diagnoses using ICD, DSM-IV, and nursing systems are emphasized. Integration of concepts and application in one’s personal practice are stressed.

NURS 600 Advanced Health Assessment: Nursing Practicum (4 credits)

This course is designed to extend and refine the assessment skills of the Registered Nurse in preparation for an advanced clinical practice role. The student will learn to perform physical, developmental, mental, emotional, cultural, social, and family assessments. Students will review anatomy and physiology related to each biological system being studied. The course emphasizes in-depth techniques for assessing each body system in individuals throughout the life span. Lectures will focus on the use of a variety of health assessment techniques, including history taking skills, physical assessment, and other diagnostic assessment tools. Application of diagnostic reasoning and patient education to the assessment process will be included in the content. This course incorporates approximately 13 hours of supervised laboratory experience and 60 hours of precepted clinical experience. Laboratory and clinical components of the course focus on helping the student to develop communication, observation, and psychomotor skills and to document history and physical examination findings. Satisfactory progress in the clinical setting is required to pass the course. Two 2-day on-campus immersions required.

NURS 642M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Concepts I (3 credits)

Focuses on the diagnosis and management of acute and episodic mental health issues. The course will have an emphasis on psychotherapy interventions and introduces the use of psychobiological interventions. Research findings related to therapeutic relationships and interpersonal processes in psychotherapy are examined. Theoretical models for psychotherapy and nursing theories are analyzed for their application in individual therapy and presenting issues in therapy situations of patients/clients of varying ages and diagnoses are emphasized. Self awareness; continuing development of knowledge and skill in assessment, diagnosis, and care formulation; and integration of theories and techniques of psychotherapy for application in one’s personal practice are stressed.

NURS 643M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Concepts II (3 credits)

Focuses psychobiological interventions building upon the knowledge and skills gained in NURS 621M Dynamic Care Formulation. The course will introduce and examine various psychobiological and non-psychobiological interventions for people suffering mental illness. Strategies for establishing differential diagnoses and the bases for treatment are emphasized. Neuroanatomy and neurophysiology as the bases for biological interventions are reviewed; concepts and principles of psychopharmacology extend existing knowledge gained in NURS 524 Advanced Pharmacology. The challenges of treating co-occurring disorders are considered. The indications for and selection of appropriate theoretical models, diagnostic strategies, and/or intervention techniques, and issues in treatment situations of patients/clients across the age span are emphasized. Group psychotherapy across the age span will be explored and the various theoretical models for delivering and implementing this modality will be reviewed.

NURS 644M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Concepts III (3 credits)

Builds upon the knowledge and skills gained in NURS 621M Dynamic Care Formulation. This course is divided into four areas of study: 1) Child/adolescent psychiatric mental health, 2) Geriatric psychiatric mental health, 3) Family and couple therapy, and 4) Advanced Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing in a complex health care system. This course will introduce and examine various theories to care for vulnerable populations suffering from mental and emotional distress, including child/adolescent and geriatric populations. The most common psychiatric disorders within these populations will be covered as well as various psychotherapeutic approaches and the most common psychiatric medications used to manage the illnesses in order to restore health. Concepts and principles of psychopharmacology extend existing knowledge gained in NURS 524 Advanced Pharmacology. Various theories of family and couple therapy will be analyzed. The role of Advanced Psychiataric Mental Health Nurse will be examined regarding system and organizational transformation.

Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Practicum: 10 Credits (600 hours)

NURS 601M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice I (1 credit)

Designed to provide opportunities for learners to begin practice as advanced practice psychiatric-mental health nurses. Emphasis is on utilizing the theories, concepts, and skills necessary to assess and diagnose major psychiatric disorders and other phenomena requiring clinical intervention gained in NURS 621M Dynamic Care Formulation in the clinical setting. One 2-day on-campus immersion required.

NURS 631M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice II (2-3 credit)

Builds on NURS 601M Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Practice I and is designed to provide the practice of psychotherapy as advanced practice nurses in psychiatric-mental health nursing. Emphasis is on continuing to refine skills in assessment, diagnosis, and care formulation; applying the theories and techniques of psychotherapy and nursing. Therapeutic use of self and developing one’s personal style and theoretical model are stressed. One 2-day on-campus immersion required.

NURS 633M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice IV (2-3 credit)

Builds on NURS 601M Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Practice I and is designed to provide the practice of psychotherapy as advanced practice nurses in psychiatric-mental health nursing. Emphasis is on continuing to refine skills in assessment, diagnosis, and care formulation; applying the theories and techniques of psychotherapy and nursing. Therapeutic use of self and developing one’s personal style and theoretical model are stressed. One 2-day on-campus immersion required.

NURS 632M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice III (2-3 credit)

Builds on NURS 601M Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing Practice I and is designed to provide the practice of psychotherapy as advanced practice nurses in psychiatric-mental health nursing. Emphasis is on continuing to refine skills in assessment, diagnosis, and care formulation; applying the theories and techniques of psychotherapy and nursing. Therapeutic use of self and developing one’s personal style and theoretical model are stressed. One 2-day on-campus immersion required.

6 Required Immersions (Campus visits)

Immersion Details

When students begin their practicum courses, they are required to participate in one on-campus immersion during each of the four practicum courses and two on-campus immersions when taking the Advanced Health Assessment course.

  • These immersions are two days in length.
  • Students also have at least one site visit from clinical faculty during two of the practicum courses.  Additional site visits are arranged as needed.
NURS 600 Advanced Health Assessment: Nursing Practicum Two 2-day on- campus immersions
NURS 601M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice l One 2-day on- campus immersions and possible site visit by faculty*
NURS 631M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice ll One 2-day on- campus immersions and possible site visit by faculty*
NURS 632M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice lll One 2-day on- campus immersions and possible site visit by faculty*
NURS 633M Advanced Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Practice lV One – day on- campus immersions and possible site visit by faculty*

*All students will have one site visit from a clinical faculty during two of the practicum courses.

PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner option (1st and 2nd master’s degree): WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, AK, and AZ.

Second Master's Eligibility

The online Second Master’s Degree program (formerly Post-Master’s Certificate) is designed for the Registered Nurse who already possesses a Master’s degree in Nursing but desires additional preparation in another specialty area. The program is structured to meet the needs and schedules of working Registered Nurses through the same distributive learning formats used in the MSN program.

PLEASE NOTE: We are only accepting students from the following states for Second Master’s in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: WA, ID, OR, MT, CA, NV, UT, AK, and AZ

Distinctive features of the Second Master’s Degree program are graduate level academic credits for professional men and women nurses; integration of MSN and Second Master’s Degree learners in most courses; emphasis on Jesuit inspired values of knowledge, sensitivity, integrity, excellence, and justice; pursuit of humanistic and ethical alternatives to solve contemporary nursing and health care problems; critical reasoning vital to professional judgment and ethical decision making; and study of health care ethics from the perspectives of both an individual and an organization. The curriculum is dynamic and changes may occur on a yearly basis.

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