Master of Science in Nursing Science

Graduate studies at the master’s level place primary emphasis upon advanced professional nursing practice, theory, research and health care delivery systems. Master’s level studies provide the student with a basis for further study at the doctoral level. Students may develop a specialized practice focus in nursing leadership (NLDR) with a concentration in nursing education (NLDR-educ) or administration (NLDR-admin). We also have a family nurse practitioner (FNP) or psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner (PMH-NP) master's option through 2019. In 2019, it will be transitioned to the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree with an FNP or PMH-NP pathway option.

  • Graduates of the FNP option are eligible to write the national certification examination for advanced professional practice as a family nurse practitioner offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).
  • Graduates of the PMH-NP option are eligible to write the national certification exam for advanced professional practice as a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner (across the lifespan) offered by ANCC.
  • Graduates of the NLDR-education option are eligible to take the National League of Nursing (NLN) Certified Nurse Educator Examination.
  • Graduates of the NLDR-admin option, with two years of executive nursing experience, are eligible to take the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) exam for certification in Executive Nursing Practice.

Part-Time/Full-Time Study

The Master's program is designed to be completed in six to eight trimesters of part-time study. Registered nurses with a BSN who are not formally admitted to the program are allowed to register for up to 9 credits of core courses on a space-available basis and with instructor permission. Enrollment in any specialty course requires formal admission to the specialty track. Students interested in full-time study should explore options with the program faculty advisor.

Scheduling of Courses

The NLDR option can be completed online, with class time being synchronous (entire class participating at the same time) or asynchronous. The FNP and PMH-NP options are hybrid. Core courses and some specialty courses are completely online, with synchronous or asynchronous delivery. The FNP and PMH-NP clinical courses and physical assessment are in a hybrid format with short face-to-face intensives required (usually 1-2 campus visits/trimester). Additional course work is held throughout the semester at scheduled times, with distance students participating live via software programs such as Skype or Collaborate.

Currently, PMH-NP and FNP clinicals must be completed in the state of Alaska. Anchorage students may be required to do their clinical  anywhere in the Anchorage Metropolitan Statistical area, which includes the Mat-Su borough to the north and Girdwood to the south. When possible and at the request of the student, clinical rotations are completed in the students' own community. Decisions for clinical sites are based on there being adequate local experiences and preceptors that allow the student to meet the course and program outcomes. Thus, it is possible for students who reside outside of Anchorage to take advantage of the opportunity to pursue graduate study at UAA. All students are encouraged to take advantage of clinical learning opportunities throughout the state, including both urban and rural settings.

Admission Requirements

Satisfy the Admission Requirements for Graduate Degrees.

School of Nursing Admission Deadlines

Information on admission deadlines can be found on the SON website. 

  • The Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMH-NP) and Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) programs admit once a year and have a specific deadline for applications.
  • The Nursing Leadership (NLDR) program has a rolling admission and candidates are reviewed each semester, when an application is complete.
  • All applicants may take up to 9 credits of core courses, on a space available basis and with faculty permission, while waiting for their application to be processed.

School of Nursing Admission Requirements

To be eligible for the Master’s program applicants must submit documentation of the following:

  • Bachelor or graduate degree in nursing from a program accredited by the Accreditation for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
  • Minimum undergraduate or graduate GPA of 3.00 (B) on a 4.00 scale. A student who does not have a minimum GPA of 3.00 may substitute their graduate UAA GPA (based on completion of three graduate core courses and earning a 3.00 or higher in each course).
  • Minimum grade of 2.00 (C) in an undergraduate or graduate research methods course and a statistics course that covers descriptive and inferential statistics.
  • Registered professional nurse license in the state of Alaska. License must remain active and unencumbered while in the School of Nursing (SON) graduate program. There are different reasons for a license to be encumbered and some may not preclude admission to the program. Students with encumbered licenses should meet with the graduate chair to determine program eligibility.
  • Minimum of one year of full-time clinical experience as a registered nurse.

School of Nursing Admission Process

The UAA School of Nursing application process can be found on the SON website.

Additional School of Nursing Requirements

Once accepted to the Master's program, students will receive instructions for submission of the following requirements*:

  • Documentation of continuous current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for adults, infants and children.
  • Evidence of satisfactory health status, including immunity to chicken pox, rubella, rubeola, and hepatitis A and B (by titer); documentation of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) immunization within the past 10 years; annual PPD skin test or health examination indicating freedom from active tuberculosis; documentation of an annual HIV test (results not required);
  • Results of the SON-sanctioned national-level criminal background check.
    *

     The above requirements may change based on the demands of clinical facilities. Please check with the SON for the most recent list of requirements.

Students are required to provide their own transportation to clinical sites. They are also responsible for their portion of the cost of audio-conferencing. Students must have access to a personal computer and reasonable Internet connectivity. Prior to entry into the nursing program, students are expected to have graduate level writing and American Psychological Association (APA) referencing skills, as well as basic computer and typing skills, for example:

  • Word processing,
  • Sending and receiving e-mail with attachments,
  • Accessing and navigating the Internet/World Wide Web,
  • Basic understanding of hardware, software and operating systems.

FNP & PMH-NP Clinical Requirements

Alaska clinical site decisions are based on the availability of qualified preceptors and agencies that provide adequate experiences so the student can meet the course and program outcomes. Whenever possible we assign sites in or near a student's home community. Student clinical hours must follow the preceptors' work schedules (usually M-F). All students are encouraged to take advantage of clinical learning opportunities throughout Alaska in both urban and rural settings. 

Academic Requirements

Students enrolled in the master’s degree program must make continuous progress toward completion of the degree and remain in good standing with the School of Nursing (SON). A detailed schematic of the SON good standing policy can be found in the SON Graduate Handbook. Noncompliance with the good standing policy and academic expectations will result in probation and possible dismissal from the program. To remain in good standing students must:

  • Maintain professional and academic standards at all times.
  • Earn a minimum 3.00 (B) in all required coursework.
  • Maintain continuous enrollment each fall and spring semester until degree is granted.

Graduation Requirements

Program Requirements

Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Options

Core Courses *
NSG A613Advanced Practice Informatics2
NSG A618Role Development in Advanced Nursing2
NSG A618AAdvanced Nursing Leadership2
NSG A619Nursing Health Policy2
NSG A621Knowledge Development for Advanced Nursing Practice3
NSG A627Practice Inquiry I: The Nature of Evidence3
NSG A633Statistics for Advanced Practice3
Total Credits17
*

Students seeking a second master’s degree may petition to have core courses waived based on evaluation of prior graduate degree.

Complete one of the following options:
Family Nurse Practitioner Option
NSG A662Family Nurse Practitioner III5
NSG A663Family Nurse Practitioner IV6
NSG A601Advanced Pathophysiology3
NSG A602Advanced Health Assessment in Primary Care4
NSG A610Pharmacology for Primary Care3
NSG A660Family Nurse Practitioner I5
NSG A661Family Nurse Practitioner II4
Advisor-approved elective3
Total Credits33
Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Option
NSG A670Advanced Practice Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing I5
NSG A671Advanced Practice Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing II5
NSG A672Advanced Practice Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing III5
NSG A673Advanced Practice Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing IV5
NSG A601Advanced Pathophysiology3
NSG A602Advanced Health Assessment in Primary Care4
NSG A610Pharmacology for Primary Care3
NSG A611Psychopharmacology for Advanced Nursing3
Total Credits33

A total of 50 credits is required for the degree.

Nursing Leadership Option

All NLDR students complete the core courses and then select one of two options: nursing education or administration.

Core Courses *
NSG A618AAdvanced Nursing Leadership2
NSG A619Nursing Health Policy2
NSG A621Knowledge Development for Advanced Nursing Practice3
NSG A627Practice Inquiry I: The Nature of Evidence3
NSG A633Statistics for Advanced Practice3
NSG A647Evidence-Based Practicum for Education in the Professional Context3
Total Credits16
*

Students seeking a second master’s degree may petition to have core courses waived based on evaluation of prior graduate degree.

Complete one of the following options:
Leadership in Education
NSG A640Teaching and Learning in the Professional Context3
NSG A641Developing Curriculum for the Professions3
NSG A643Assessment and Evaluation in the Context of Professional Education Curricula4
NSG A644Technology for Learning and Collaboration in the Professions2
Advisor-approved elective3
Total Credits15
Leadership in Administration
NSG A613Advanced Practice Informatics2
NSG A615Health Services Organization and Finance4
Select two courses from the following list6
Health Services Administration
Program Evaluation
Introduction to Public Administration
Management Analysis
Public and Non-Profit Organizational Behavior
Human Resources Administration and Labor Relations
Program Evaluation and Performance Measurement
Advisor-approved elective3
Total Credits15

A minimum of 32 credits is required for the degree. 

Program Student Learning Outcomes

The graduate is prepared to:

  1. Engage in scholarly inquiry, including evaluation and application of evidence-based research to advanced nursing practice or leadership.
  2. Practice in a manner that incorporates ethical, legal, and professional standards for advanced nursing practice or nursing leadership.
  3. Collaborate across disciplines and in partnership with communities, groups, families and individuals through culturally sensitive practice.
  4. Demonstrate competence and caring in the professional nurse role to serve as a provider, leader, and educator in the health care system.
  5. Articulate a plan for self-directed, lifelong learning and professional development.