Online Master's Degree in Nursing

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Program at a Glance

  • This online MSN program offers the flexibility nurses need to balance work and life responsibilities with their studies.
  • The master's degree is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
  • Prepare to sit for industry certification exams.
  • Specialize in one of six pathways aligned to specific advanced roles:
Upcoming Start Dates

We offer multiple start dates to give you flexibility in your education, life, and work schedules.

Course Effort
15 Hours Per Week
Course Length
10-Week Terms
Average Completion
2 Years
Credits Required
60–90
Cost per Credit
$420
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Purdue Global Career Outcomes 2020–2021

Each year, our Center for Career Advancement sends a NACE First Destination survey to our graduating class to learn more about their career choices and potential income within 18 months of graduation. We’re proud of our recent Purdue Global alumni accomplishments.

92%

Graduates in Purdue Global’s Master of Science in Nursing program were employed or continued their education within 18 months of graduation.

“Career Outcomes Rate” is not the same as an “employment rate”—it includes graduates who are: (1) employed (whether full or part time); (2) participating in a program of voluntary service, (3) serving in the U.S. Armed Forces, or (4) enrolled in a program of continuing education. This rate may also include graduates employed in jobs unrelated to their degree or who were employed while attending Purdue Global. (9,106 graduates surveyed across associate's, bachelor's, master's, JD, EJD, and DNP programs from July 1, 2019, to December 31, 2020. 7,803 of 9,106 replied.)

Online Master of Science in Nursing Program Overview

Nursing is undergoing a radical transformation, with advanced practice registered nurses taking on greater responsibilities across the health care industry. At Purdue Global, you can earn a valuable nursing credential online to help advance your career.*

Purdue Global's online master's degree in nursing builds on your nursing education and practical experience, offering you leadership and independent practice opportunities. The degree plan includes specialized courses in organizational theory, health care finance, health policy, human resources, information technology, and health care systems.

See the University Catalog for policy and degree plan information specific to the master's in nursing program.

Note: Residents of TN may not enroll in this program. Residents of the following states and territories may not enroll in the nurse practitioner population focus areas: HI, LA, NY, OR, UT, Guam, Puerto Rico. In addition, residents of DC or WA may not enroll in the adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner population focus area or psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner focus area. Residents of IL, IN, or WI may not enroll in the executive leader or nurse educator concentration.

Some pathways are not available to international students.

Purdue Global MSN graduate Sharon Brown discusses how earning her degree online inspired her to pursue her DNP.
CCNE Accredited logo

The master's degree in nursing program at Purdue University Global is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (www.CCNEAccreditation.org).

Purdue University Global Is Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

The HLC (HLCommission.org) is an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Dedicated Faculty and Advisors

Current information and techniques are taught by practicing professionals who have advanced degrees in nursing. Academic advisors and faculty offer personalized academic support as you earn your master's in nursing online.

Admissions Requirements

A bachelor's degree with an upper-level major in nursing and an approved criminal background check is required. You will need to provide an official transcript that shows completion of your bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, though an unofficial copy may be provided during the application process. Additional requirements apply. Refer to the program-specific policy page in the University Catalog or speak to an Advisor to learn more.

Gain Real World Experience

Faculty- and preceptor-supported clinical practice experiences in your community provide knowledge and mentoring specific to your area of interest.

Contact an Admissions Advisor for information on the number of clinical hours required in your specialty area.

Accelerate Your Master’s Degree With ExcelTrack™

Forget what you know about earning a degree. ExcelTrack™ is personalized learning that gives you more control over your education, getting you to the same degree faster, for less money.

Ways to Save

  • Transfer Credits

    Earn credit for prior coursework completed at eligible institutions, including community colleges.

    Save Time and Money on Your Degree

  • Financial Aid

    Title IV federal financial aid is available for many of our degree programs.

    Financial Aid FAQ

  • Corporate Partner Benefits

    Employees of Purdue Global partner organizations may be eligible for special tuition reductions.

    Employee Savings and Benefits

  • Military Tuition Reduction

    55% reduction per credit for current servicemembers, 38% per credit for veterans for undergraduate programs.

    Tuition Savings for Military

  • International Tuition Reduction

    International students living outside of the United States are eligible for a 25% tuition reduction.

    International Tuition and Benefits

Program Cost Estimator

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What Courses Will I Take?

The Master of Science in Nursing curriculum prepares you to fill advanced practice and nursing leadership roles. Courses are reviewed and revised by industry experts to ensure they reflect the most recent developments in health care.

The degree plan includes core curriculum and concentration or population focus area courses.

See All Nursing Courses
Sample Courses
  • Advanced Nursing Roles
  • Scientific and Analytic Approaches to Advanced Evidence-Based Practice
  • Epidemiology and Health Promotion
  • Health Policy, Ethical, and Legal Perspectives of the Health Care System
  • Promoting Optimal Models and Systems for Health Care Delivery

Concentrations

Choose from six pathways designed to provide further knowledge in your chosen specialty and your specific advanced role:

  • Adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner
  • Adult-gerontology primary care nurse practitioner
  • Family nurse practitioner, primary care
  • Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner
  • Executive leader
  • Nurse educator

NP Pathways

  • Core Credits
    30
  • Elective Credits
    48–60
  • Total Credits
    78–90

Other Pathways

  • Core Credits
    30
  • Elective Credits
    30
  • Total Credits
    60

Degree Pathways

Choose from population focus areas designed to provide further knowledge in your chosen specialty and your specific advanced role. Each option includes a guided clinical experience.

Note: Residents of the following states and territories may not enroll in the nurse practitioner population focus areas: HI, LA, NJ, NY, ND, OR, TN, UT, Guam, Puerto Rico. In addition, residents of DC or WA may not enroll in the acute care adult-gerontology nurse practitioner population focus area. Residents of IL, IN, or WI may not enroll in the executive leader or nurse educator concentration. Some pathways are not available to international students.

  • The adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner population focus area is designed to prepare registered nurses as practitioners for professional practice in the medical, surgical, and critical care management of acutely ill adult patient populations. Graduates may expect to practice in acute and complex care settings in roles such as a hospitalist in a medical-surgical unit or an intensivist in a general or specialty critical care unit. Adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioners function within the interprofessional acute care team providing direct care management including diagnosis and treatment planning. This population focus area also includes an online skills lab that incorporates an Oculus Quest virtual reality (VR) headset for a virtual lab experience, allowing you to work remotely with faculty and staff.

  • The adult-gerontology primary care nurse practitioner population focus area is designed to educate you on the topics of how to best provide primary care as a member of an interprofessional team and improve the availability of evidence-based, culturally relevant health care in diverse communities. The curriculum helps you develop the skills to evaluate the health and wellness of individuals, families, and their communities. The nurse practitioner is expected to possess skills in diagnosing, treating, and managing acute and chronic health conditions, delivering primary and preventive care, and participating in the development of appropriate policy and evidence-based practice.

  • The family nurse practitioner population focus area is designed to educate you on the topics of how to best provide primary care as a member of an interprofessional team and improve the availability of evidence-based, culturally relevant health care in diverse communities. The curriculum helps you develop the skills to evaluate the health and wellness of individuals, families, and their communities. The nurse practitioner is expected to possess skills in diagnosing, treating, and managing acute and chronic health conditions, delivering primary and preventive care, and participating in the development of appropriate policy and evidence-based practice.

  • The psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner population focus area is designed for master’s prepared nurses who want to obtain further knowledge to provide comprehensive psychiatric mental health care through the assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and management of psychiatric mental health disorders, medical organic brain disorders, substance abuse problems, and complex co-occurring disease processes and disorders across the lifespan. Graduates may expect to practice in acute care and primary care settings in hospitals, community mental health centers, home health care, partial hospital care, residential settings, prisons, or private practices as well as in collaborative practices with other specialties. Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners function within the interprofessional acute care or primary care team providing direct care management including diagnosis, treatment planning, conducting therapy, prescribing psychotropic medications, and providing emergency psychiatric services. This population focus area also incorporates an Oculus Quest virtual reality (VR) headset for a virtual lab experience to augment and enhance concepts presented in the program.

  • The executive leader concentration is designed to prepare you to pursue managerial positions and leadership roles in hospitals, community health, long-term care facilities, and other health care systems. The program focuses on the principles of personnel management, policy development and implementation, budgeting, and the use of information technology.

  • The nurse educator concentration prepares nurses to address health care problems in a variety of settings. Learn to effectively teach patients and their families, provide staff development programs, evaluate the effectiveness of educational programs, and instruct undergraduate nursing students through the application of advanced nursing knowledge, learning theories, and curricular development and instructional design techniques.

Career Opportunities

Nursing is undergoing a radical transformation, with advanced practice nurses taking on greater responsibilities across the health care industry. Purdue Global’s online Master of Science in Nursing builds on your previous nursing education and practical experience, offering you a pathway to leadership and independent practice opportunities.

Top 5 Skills Employers Are Looking for:

  1. Active Learning
  2. Active Listening
  3. Critical Thinking
  4. Social Perceptiveness
  5. Speaking

Top Jobs With This Degree

Labor market, salary, and projected growth information are supplied by Emsi. Average salary range is based on national data. Projected growth represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2018–2030) at the state level and is based on your geographic location. Actual outcomes vary by geographic area, previous work experience, and opportunities for employment. Purdue Global cannot guarantee employment placement, salary level, or career advancement. Additional certification or licensing may be required to work in certain fields.

Get to Know Our Faculty

Purdue Global faculty members are real-world practitioners who bring knowledge gained through the powerful combination of higher learning and industry experience.

View Nursing Faculty Directory
grad hat icon 98% Faculty members who have advanced degrees
diploma icon 50% Faculty members who hold a doctorate
tablet icon 237 Faculty publications in 2020–2021
student at desk icon More Than 36,000 Professional development hours logged by faculty in 2020–2021

Statistics include all Purdue Global faculty members and are not school or program-specific calculations. Source: Purdue Global Office of Reporting and Analysis, September 2021. 2020–2021 academic year.

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Program Brochure

Download our brochure to learn more about the online Master of Nursing and the benefits of earning your degree at Purdue Global.

Prepare yourself for success with a master’s degree in nursing.

Earn Your MSN and MBA Together Online

Our MSN and MBA Dual Degree Option lets you complete both a master’s in nursing and a master of business administration simultaneously. Your MSN prepares you for leadership roles in health care; adding an MBA extends your expertise into business management, helping you find advanced business solutions to complex health care problems.

NOTES AND CONDITIONS

*Employment and Career Advancement: Purdue Global does not guarantee employment placement or career advancement. Actual outcomes vary by geographic area, previous work experience and opportunities for employment. Additional certification or licensing may be required to work in certain fields.

Students are responsible for understanding the requirements of optional certification exams. The University cannot guarantee students will be eligible to sit for or pass exams. In some cases, work experience, additional coursework beyond the Purdue Global program, fieldwork, and/or background checks may be necessary to be eligible to take or to successfully pass the exams.

Graduates of a nurse practitioner pathway who pass the relevant certification exam may be academically eligible for licensure as an advanced practice registered nurse in any state in which the program is available for enrollment. Licensure-track programs may limit enrollment to students in certain states. Refer to Purdue Global’s State Licensure and Certifications page for state-specific licensure information. The University cannot guarantee students will be eligible to sit for or pass exams.
Please note that most states require nurses to be nationally certified and to have completed an accredited graduate nursing program in order to obtain licensure as an advanced practice registered nurse. Each national certification provider and state Board of Nursing will have eligibility requirements in addition to these educational requirements, such as passing a criminal background check. Students are responsible for determining whether they are eligible for state Board of Nursing approval and certification as an advanced practice registered nurse in their state. Students can obtain additional information from their state's Board of Nursing, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), and the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN).

Purdue Global School of Nursing, October 2020.