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All nurse practitioner concentrations are 49 semester credit hours in length for students seeking the MSN degree. Available concentrations include (a) Adult/Gerontology with an Acute Care focus (A/GNP-AC), (b) Family, with Primary Care focus (FNP), and (c) Pediatrics with Primary Care (PNP-PC) or Acute Care (PNP-AC).  In addition, the SON offers a Post-Master’s Certificate that ranges from 29-31 hours for all concentrations (see table below). Clinical practicum time varies from a minimum of 610-720 hours based on concentration and acquisition of competencies essential to practice. All Nurse Practitioner majors must complete the three core and three advanced practice core courses prior to starting clinical courses. Once students are admitted into a specific Nurse Practitioner concentration, they must meet with their advisor and develop a plan of progression.  Due to the competiveness of the major and limited clinical slots, students who deviate from their plan of study for any reason will be dropped from the clinical cohort and must reapply to the Nurse Practitioner major.

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

The Master of Science degree in Nursing (MSN) prepares professional nurses for post-graduate roles in a variety of advanced practice and specialty areas. Graduates have increased autonomy and independence in their practice and are eligible to apply for national certification. The Master of Science in Nursing provides the graduate the opportunity to:

  1. Synthesize theory and concepts from nursing and other disciplines for applications in the care of clients;
  2. Provide advanced nursing care based upon in-depth client assessment in an area of specialization;
  3. Evaluate ethical, moral, and legal precepts in client care;
  4. Design culturally competent interventions based on current, valid evidence;
  5. Apply research methods to investigate problems that influence advanced nursing care;
  6. Analyze public policy and issues that affect advanced nursing practice and health care delivery systems;
  7. Collaborate with other disciplines to provide care in a variety of settings;
  8. Integrate peer review and/or peer guidance in advanced practice;
  9. Participate in leadership and development of the profession; and
  10. Enhance the basis for life-long learning and/or doctoral study.

MSN Applicants have the choice of three majors:

  1. Nursing Education
  2. Nurse Practitioner with concentrations in Adult/Gerontology with an Acute Care focus, Family, and Pediatrics
  3. Nursing Systems Management

Total required semester hours vary from 33 to 49.

Interested nurses apply online through the Graduate School Web site http://graduate.utep.edu/ and send official transcripts directly to the Graduate School. After individual evaluation, the Dean of the Graduate School upon recommendation of the Graduate Studies Committee makes the final decision regarding admission.

Requirements for Admission

  1. Current Registered Nurse license in good standing in state or country where clinical or practicum coursework is completed
  2. Completed application for graduate school at UTEP and a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in the United States or equivalent education at a foreign institution or
    Alternative admission: associate’s degree in Nursing from an accredited Nursing program. These applicants must first complete undergraduate application and the following undergraduate courses: (a) State of Texas core courses, (b) pre-professional Nursing courses, and (c) the five RN-BSN courses with a grade of B or better. Once undergraduate courses are completed, students apply to graduate school and request acceptance into a Nursing graduate major (Bachelor of Science in nursing degree not awarded).
  3. Satisfactory score on TOEFL as defined by the graduate school for international applicants whose first language is not English or who have not completed a university degree in the U.S.
  4. Demonstration of academic achievement and potential as indicated by
    1. Undergraduate or graduate coursework
    2. Letter of intent (LOI) that includes
      1. Name and 800# if known
      2. A personal goal statement demonstrating fit with specific major and concentration for which you are applying
      3. Skills, talents, unique abilities, or community service essential to preferred advanced nursing role and concentration; if you are an NP applicant you may want to address experience with diverse populations
      4. Following format
        1. Word document with 500 words or less, 1 inch margins, 1.5 or double spaced, and 11 point Arial font.
        2. Strong flow and organization
        3. Proper sentence structure, syntax, punctuation, capitalization, etc.
    3. Current resume identifying appropriate objective related to graduate education

Length of program depends on major and varies from 33 to 49 semester credit hours (SCH). Students should contact the Assistant Dean of Graduate Nursing for further information (gradnursing@utep.edu). Applications are considered on an individual basis and are reviewed by the Graduate Studies Committee of the School of Nursing.

Online Learning Requirements

Because the MSN degree is online, most textbook and learning resources are online. To be successful, students must purchase or have accessible

  • Computer with reliable internet access, Microsoft Office 2007 and other software essential for online learning (see Instructional Support Services for computer configuration)
  • Headset with microphone and separate web camera
  • Point of service technology such as I-touch, smart phone, or personal digital assistant

Compliance Requirements for MSN Program

Compliance must remain current throughout the semester in which the student enrolls or the student risks being dropped from courses. Once admitted, students provide compliance documentation directly to the Compliance Officer. See compliance website for more information.

Travel Requirements

Graduate orientation, usually held in August just prior to the start of fall semester, is mandatory for all students. Nurse Educator or Nursing Administration students may be required to travel one or two additional times during the program. Nurse Practitioner students may have to come to UTEP's campus a maximum of three times per semester. This time is used for self and faculty evaluation of clinical competencies. Due to the limited number of appropriate clinical placements, graduate students may be required to travel 200 miles or more to fulfill clinical requirements. Students in the Acute Care Nurse Practitioner concentration are required to travel to Houston or another location for two weeks to precept at approved clinical sites.

Student Employment

Student employment is a personal decision; however, it is the student’s responsibility to arrange work obligations to support the required education commitments for classes and clinical experiences. We strongly encourage NP students in the last three semesters of study to immerse themselves into the role and to limit outside employment. The final capstone experience for the NSM major requires large blocks of time that will require employment arrangements to meet the course requirements. Classes are offered in a variety of time periods throughout the year to assist the students in minimizing conflicts.

Degree Requirements for the Master of Science in Nursing

The School of Nursing attempts to accommodate flexibility in course offerings with respect to weekend, evening, and summer classes and online delivery.  Courses with enrollment of less than seven individuals are subject to cancellation.
Graduate students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 (“B average”) in order to remain in good academic standing.  Additionally, any graduate nursing student achieving a grade lower than B in any of the Graduate Core or Advanced Practice Core courses must repeat the course and earn a grade of B or better.  Students earning two grades of C in any graduate nursing course will be dismissed from the Graduate Nursing Program.  Students earning a grade of D or F in any graduate nursing course will be dismissed from the Graduate Nursing Program. 
All degree requirements for the M.S.N. must be completed within six years.

Non-Thesis Options

As partial fulfillment of meeting requirements for the M.S.N. degree, students must complete an electronic portfolio demonstrating:

  • Achievement of program outcomes
  • Competency in specific knowledge and skills related to specific major/concentration

Concentrations

  • Adult-Geriatrics with an Acute Care Specialization
  • Family Nurse Pratitioner
  • Pediatric Nurse Acute Care
  • Pediatric Nurse Primary Care

Degree Plan

Required Credits: 48

Graduate Core Hours (All courses require a grade of B or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5310Nursing Theories and Processes3
NURS 5338Health Law, Policy & Ethics3
NURS 5370Rsrch Appraisal & Application3
Advanced Practice Core Courses (All courses require a grade of B or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5303Advanced Health Assessment3
NURS 5319Advanced Pathophysiology3
NURS 5362Pharmacotherapeutics3
Concentration Required
Select one of the following concentrations30
Total Hours48

Concentration in Adult-Geriatrics with an Acute Care Specialization

Adult-Gero NP w/Acute Care Sp (All courses require a grade of C or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5254Advanced Practice Nursing Role2
NURS 5260Advanced Skills2
NURS 5302Adult & Geriatric Practm3
NURS 5361Acute & Critcl Illness Practm3
NURS 5367Advanced Diagnostics3
NURS 5461Acute & Crit Illness in Adults4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5602Adult & Geriatric Health6
Total Hours31

Concentration in Family Nurse Practitioner

Family Nurse Practitioner (All courses require a grade of C or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5254Advanced Practice Nursing Role2
NURS 5302Adult & Geriatric Practm3
NURS 5312Chldbear/rearing Hlth Practm3
NURS 5412Childbearing/rearing Hlth4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5602Adult & Geriatric Health6
NURS 5672Advanced Practice Clinical6
Select three hours from the following:3
Adv Health Assessm. Practicum
Advanced FNP Skills
Special Topics
Independent Study
Advanced Health Assessment
Advanced FNP Diagnostics
FNP Adult Health
FNP Adult Health Practicum
FNP Geriatric Health
FNP Geriatric Health Practicum
FNP Pediatric Health
FNP Women's Health
FNP Women's Health Practicum
Advanced Skills
Special Topics
Independent Study
Organ. Theory & Culture
Advanced Health Assessment
Nursing Theories and Processes
Advanced Pathophysiology
Alternative Healing Methods
Management Roles & Operations
Health Care Financial Mgmt.
Health Law, Policy & Ethics
Nursing Management Residency
Curriculum Development
Effective Teaching Strategies
Evaluation of Learning
Perspectives on Border Health
Pediatric Chronic Hlth Practm
Acute Pediatric Practicum
Acute & Critcl Illness Practm
Pharmacotherapeutics
Managing Health Care Outcomes
Managing Diverse Work Teams
Advanced Diagnostics
Nursing Ed Mentored Experience
Rsrch Appraisal & Application
Integ Concpts Pathophys/Pharm
Nurs Ed Mentored Exp-Educ Role
Special Topics in Nursing
Independent Study
FNP Pedi Health Practicum
Acute & Crit Illness in Adults
GNP Certification Review
Advanced Practice Clinical
Advanced Practice Clinical
Pediatric Acute Care
Pediatric Chronic Healthcare
Total Hours31

Concentration in Pediatric Nurse Acute Care

Pediatric Nurse Acute Care (All courses require a grade of C or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5254Advanced Practice Nursing Role2
NURS 5260Advanced Skills2
NURS 5312Chldbear/rearing Hlth Practm3
NURS 5359Acute Pediatric Practicum3
NURS 5367Advanced Diagnostics3
NURS 5412Childbearing/rearing Hlth4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5657Pediatric Acute Care6
Total Hours31

Concentration in Pediatric Nurse Primary Care

Pediatric Nurse Primary Care (All courses require a grade of C or better)
Required Courses:
NURS 5254Advanced Practice Nursing Role2
NURS 5260Advanced Skills2
NURS 5312Chldbear/rearing Hlth Practm3
NURS 5358Pediatric Chronic Hlth Practm3
NURS 5367Advanced Diagnostics3
NURS 5412Childbearing/rearing Hlth4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5472Advanced Practice Clinical4
NURS 5658Pediatric Chronic Healthcare6
Total Hours31