• Nursing

The Accelerated Master of Science – Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) degree program offers select UVM undergraduate nursing students the opportunity to obtain both their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in six years of study.

The program prepares nurses to combine innovations in health care delivery with evidence-based practice to manage coordination of care. Whether providing acute care or assisting with decision-making in the transition to community or home care settings, clinical nurse leaders provide vital support to patients, their families, and providers.

The Accelerated Master of Science – Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) program fulfills the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) requirements to sit for the Commission on Nurse Certification (CNC) Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) certification examination. The program is not accepting applications at this time.

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Students apply to the program in the spring of their junior year and may take up to six credits of graduate-level courses during their senior year. Students are encouraged to complete three credits of graduate study the summer after graduation from the undergraduate nursing program. Custom curriculum tracks combine hands-on clinical experience with courses in advanced evidence-based practice, health care management and care delivery.

Students complete their practicum hours at hospitals, clinics and other affiliate sites and agencies that provide experience in various roles fulfilled by a clinical nurse leader and implement a culminating, evidence-based capstone project.

A feature of the Master of Science – Clinical Nurse Leader program is UVM’s relationship with academic practice partners, including Appletree Bay Primary Care, the University of Vermont Medical Center, and other clinical agencies.

Degree Requirements (37.5 Credits)

Semester 1 (Undergraduate Senior Fall)

  • GRNS 6270: Advanced Topics in Healthcare Informatics

Semester 2 (Undergraduate Senior Spring)

  • NH 6899: Fundamentals of Natural Inquiry

Semester 3 (Undergraduate Summer)

  • GRNS 6260: Health Care Ethics, Policy, and Politics

Semester 4

  • GRNS 6350: Advanced Pathophysiology
  • STAT 3000: Biostatistics and Epidemiology

Semester 5

  • GRNS 6280: Quality in Health Care
  • CNL Seminar

Semester 6

  • GRNS 6990: Advanced Pharmacology for the CNL
  • CNL Practicum I

Semester 7

  • GRNS 7060: Advanced Health Assessment
  • GRNS 6210: Professional Role Development
  • GRNS 6220: Organization, Delivery, and Financing of Health Care
  • CNL Seminar II
  • CNL Practicum II

Semester 8

  • GRNS 6430: CNL Seminar III
  • GRNS 6440: Immersion Practicum

Total Credits: 37.5

Total Clinical Hours: 510

NOTES: The UVM Course Catalogue details specific requirements as designated by catalog year. Academic standards are outlined in the CNHS Nursing Graduate Student Handbook.

Admission Requirements

  • Minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0
  • Enrollment and good standing in the UVM undergraduate nursing program
  • Completion of the Graduate College Application Form with three letters of recommendation, including one from a UVM nursing clinical instructor highlighting the candidate’s clinical performance.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are not required.

Virtual Info Sessions

Email cnhsgrad@uvm.edu to register for an information session.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will courses be online, hybrid, or on campus?

Some courses are offered live on campus at scheduled times; others are offered in hybrid format with remote synchronous delivery or asynchronous delivery online. A car is needed for travel to rural sites.

Where do clinical nurse leaders work?

The CNL is prepared for nursing leadership in a variety of roles, including post-acute clinical navigator/coordinator, outcomes manager, patient advocate, educator, information manager, systems analyst/risk anticipator, and clinical nurse manager.

What about financial aid and tuition costs for the program?

For current information about financial aid, tuition, and fees, refer to the Student Financial Services website.

How can I find out if UVM has received my transcripts (or any other materials)?

UVM will notify you when application materials have been received.

When will I learn whether I have been admitted to the program?

Applicants will be notified of admissions decisions within approximately two weeks of the application deadline.


Accreditation: The Master of Science in Nursing degree program at the University of Vermont is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org).

Application Deadline

Not accepting applications at this time.