Nursing (Master of Science)
The Department of Nursing offers a graduate program leading to a Master of Science degree in nursing that prepares nurses to assume leadership roles within health care systems in a variety of settings, to expand knowledge of the discipline of nursing, to develop expertise in a specialized area of nursing, and to acquire the foundation for doctoral study and continued professional development. The ability to work collaboratively on an interdisciplinary team, provide patient-centered care, employ evidence-based practice, access information technology, and apply quality improvement strategies are basic competencies expected of all graduates of this program.
The graduate curriculum includes five core courses essential for all students that address the theoretical basis of nursing care: professional issues and role development of advanced practice registered nurses, research utilization and evidence based practice, health policy and financing, theoretical foundations of nursing, and biostatistics and epidemiology. Students apply core content to their chosen area of specialization. Students may select a course of study in: Clinical Systems Management, Primary Care Nursing with preparation either as an Adult, Family Nurse Practitioner, or Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing. After successful completion of program requirements students are eligible to take either the American Nurse Credentialing Center or American Academy of Nurse Practitioner certification exams at the advanced level.
Clinical practica are an integral aspect of graduate nursing education providing students an opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills in a precepted environment. Students need to be able to travel throughout the state and will incur associated costs for travel and lodging if necessary. All students are required to complete a criminal background check prior to July 1st of the year which they begin the professional program. Prior to enrolling in clinical practica, students must have current certification in Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), evidence of meeting OSHA requirements, HIPAA training, annual PPD testing, select immunizations, and professional liability insurance.
Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Master of Science
There are three routes of entry into the Graduate Nursing Program.
- Registered nurses (RN) with a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in nursing; or
- Registered nurses with a bachelor's degree in another field and successful completion of the Bridge Process (means of assessment of nursing knowledge); or
- Undergraduate grade point average preferably of 3.00 or better;
- Successful completion of an undergraduate course in statistics;
- Successful completion of an undergraduate health assessment course for nurse practitioner tracks;
- Satisfactory scores on the Graduate Record Exam;
- Licensure or eligibility for licensure as a registered nurse in Vermont(non-MEPN applicants);
- Three letters of recommendation from persons who can assess your potential for graduate work.
Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science
Applicants may be accepted concurrent with admission, or candidacy may be deferred pending a period of satisfactory graduate study at the University of Vermont.
Minimum Degree Requirements
Total number of required credits is dependent on the specialty track chosen. Satisfactory completion of a Comprehensive Examination and either a thesis or master's project is also required.