Master of Science in Nursing Curriculum

Chamberlain's online MSN degree program can be completed in two years by taking one class each eight-week session. Core MSN courses are taken in the first year and specialty track courses and practicum(s) are completed during the second year of study.

MSN Degree Core Curriculum

NR-500 Foundational Concepts & Applications – 3 Credits

This foundational nursing course introduces the graduate student to the conceptual foundations and skills essential for the master’s-prepared nurse. A framework for professional nursing practice, scholarly communication of ideas, use of critical inquiry and information dissemination and professional development of the master’s-prepared nurse are explored. 

NR-501 Theoretical Basis for Advanced Nursing Practice – 3 Credits

In this course, the student examines multiple theories from nursing and relevant fields. The student learns to critique the components of the theories as well as explore the value of the theories to nursing and nursing practice. This critique and evaluation includes consideration of the contribution of theory to the conduct of research and evidence-based practice. Essential to this process is identifying situations that can be improved or better understood by the use of relevant theory and strategies for applying a theory to nursing practice in a selected healthcare or educational organization. 

NR-504 Leadership & Nursing Practice: Role Development – 3 Credits

In this course, the student explores the components of advanced nursing practice and the role and relationship of nurse leaders to the nursing practice environment and the greater organization. This course emphasizes strategies and processes to foster change, implement a vision and introduce innovation within an organization. It also defines social, political, legal, legislative, regulatory and organizational factors that influence nursing practice. Principles of leadership are emphasized, including ethics, negotiation, motivation of others, advocacy, problem-solving, diversity management, interdisciplinary and multi-agency partnerships, improvements to care management, skills development and knowledge. 

NR-505 Advanced Research Methods: Evidence-Based Practice – 3 Credits

This course provides the scientific basis for the analysis and use of research to further develop the knowledge base and skill sets required to maximize evidence-based practice in healthcare settings. Students conduct an in-depth analysis of research methods as a framework for studying clinical issues. Students build on their knowledge of the research process, with an emphasis on analyzing the components, problems and issues related to nursing and other disciplines; finding, evaluating and critiquing available literature; and critically evaluating qualitative and quantitative research methods, including design, sampling, data-collection strategies, measurement and interpretation of results. All of these skills allow students to evaluate and critique findings to enhance evidence-based nursing practice, including dissemination of findings. Ethical issues are also addressed throughout the course. 

NR-506 Healthcare Policy – 3 Credits

In this course, the student explores topics related to healthcare policy, including the processes involved in developing and analyzing policy components and consequences currently impacting the nursing profession, consumers and the healthcare system. The forces responsible for current healthcare policies, including historical, ethical and political factors are examined. Current policy-related controversies and challenges are also examined. Students investigate and propose strategies that nurses employ to impact policy development at institutional, local, national and international levels. 

NR-512 Fundamentals of Nursing Informatics – 3 Credits

This course provides foundational or introductory knowledge about informatics, with an emphasis on developing an understanding of concepts relevant to nursing informatics (NI). NI is a nursing specialty that supports quality nursing care through the distribution of data and information so that knowledge can be generated, processed, acquired, and disseminated. NI synthesizes nursing science with computer, information, and cognitive sciences. You will explore informatics-based health applications that support decision making in the four areas of nursing: clinical, administrative, research and education. These applications enhance the value of nursing. 

Specialty Track Courses & Practicum

Chamberlain offers Educator, Executive, Family Nurse Practitioner, Informatics and Healthcare Policy specialty tracks for the online MSN degree program. Students complete practicums in their own geographic area. Many students are able to complete it at the organization where they work.

Download the MSN Curriculum Plan (PDF).

Read more about the MSN admission requirements.


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