Sep 22, 2020  
Graduate Studies Catalog 2019-2020 
Graduate Studies Catalog 2019-2020 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Family Nurse Practitioner, MSN and Post-Master’s Certificate

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The Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) specialization prepares registered nurses to assess, diagnose, and treat common episodic and chronic disorders, and to provide health-promotion and disease-prevention interventions and counseling. The use of clinical decision-making and diagnostic reasoning skills is emphasized. The graduate will be prepared to provide direct patient care to individuals across the life span in primary care settings.

Graduates will be eligible for certification as an FNP in Pennsylvania through the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing. In addition, graduates will be eligible to take the national certification examination for FNP from both the American Nurses Credentialing Center and American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.


The FNP specialization is offered as a 36-credit master’s degree for baccalaureate-prepared-nurses, and as a 27-credit post-master’s certificate for nurses already holding a nursing master’s degree in advanced practice. Transcripts of students with an entry level master’s in nursing degree will be evaluated on an individual basis for transfer credit. 

Each student is required to complete a clinical practicum. The practicum (NURS 542 , NURS 552 , NURS 562 , and NURS 572 ) is taken over four semesters. The faculty will assign the student to a practitioner(s) who will serve as preceptor(s) for the clinical practicum in the FNP program. The preceptor must be a certified registered nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife or a licensed physician with at least one year of clinical practice experience. Each credit of clinical equals 125 clock hours per semester so that total clinical practicum time is 875 hours for the FNP program.


The FNP program can be completed in 21 months of full-time study, with generally one day of classes per week and two days of clinical practicum in the fall and spring semesters. Some of the core courses are offered online, while the specialty didactic courses are all offered face-to-face. Part-time study is also available.

Required Software

Family nurse practitioner students are required to purchase the nurse practitioner student tracking soft-ware program to record their clinical experiences.  

Academic Regulations

Any student who fails to receive a final course grade of “B” or higher in the FNP specialty courses (NURS 530, NURS 541, NURS 551, and NURS 561 and NURS 571) cannot progress in the program. The student may make application to the Department of Nursing to repeat the course when it is next offered. The student shall also be required to repeat the co-requisite clinical course, regardless of the clinical grade. Any student who fails to obtain a final course grade of “B” or higher on the second attempt will be dismissed from the program. A student may repeat only one specialty course. Any student who receives an Unsatisfactory in a clinical practicum course will be dismissed from the program.

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