Master of Science in Nursing: Nursing Education (MSN)

Degree Type
Master of Science

Program Description

Bryan College of Health Sciences offers a 36-credit Master of Science for registered nurses. Two tracks are offered: Nursing Education and Nursing Leadership. The Nurse Educator track prepares graduates for teaching positions in academia, staff development, patient education, and continuing education. The Nursing Leadership track prepares graduates for multiple roles in management, administration, and leadership. The program is offered in distance format which combines synchronous video class sessions with online and independent learning. The program can be completed in 2 years of study, including summers. Students may apply and enter the program in summer and fall semesters as program capacity allows. 

Two entry options are offered: one for RNs holding a bachelors in nursing and one for practicing RNs who hold a non- nursing bachelor’s degree.

RN-MSN: Applicants applying via the RN-MSN option select a specialty track at the time of application. Students must complete the RN-MSN bridge courses and a minimum of one year of RN practice prior to beginning MSN coursework. A BSN is not awarded.

MSN bridge courses:

NURS480 RN-MSN Transition 3 credit hours
NURS405RN Community-Based Nursing 5 credit hours 

MSN Program Philosophy

Nursing is an art and a science: the embodiment of caring. Nursing consists of a unique and integrated body of knowledge and requires multiple ways of thinking and reasoning. Nursing addresses holistic human responses to promote optimal health. Nurses function as part of the interprofessional team to provide high quality, safe, holistic care to their clients. Nursing requires commitment and responsibility to a diverse society and to the profession.

Learning is a lifelong endeavor that results in perpetual evolution of thinking, insight, attitude, and behavior. Education is a shared venture between students and faculty in which both embrace learning as change. Students are responsible to uphold the highest level of integrity and practice standards and demonstrate commitment to self- direction, independence of thought and creativity. Faculty craft an intellectually challenging environment in which they facilitate learning, support student learning goals, and role model excellence in education and nursing practice.

Graduate nursing education emphasizes inquiry as a constant that is integral to advancement of nursing practice. Engagement in systematic inquiry using traditional research methods, available evidence, contemporary technology, and information systems is an essential component of nursing education scholarship and leadership. Graduate nursing education provides the foundation to assume a variety of specialized roles in teaching and leadership in nursing.

Nursing education is a specialty area of nursing practice that requires a unique blend of clinical and educational excellence. Nurse educators use their expertise to facilitate learning in classroom environments as well as practice settings. Nurse educators assist students to correlate theoretical concepts to real time events to solve client issues.

Nursing leadership is a specialty area of nursing practice that requires a unique blend of expertise in nursing and the business of healthcare. As members of interprofessional teams, nurse leaders facilitate innovative solutions in the provision of care within healthcare systems. Nursing leaders shape safe, healthy, and fiscally sound systems through creative application of theoretical principles.

Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Science in Nursing program, graduates will be able to:

  1. Initiate evidence based solutions focused on addressing needs in professional practice.
  2. Engage interprofessional teams to promote innovative solutions within healthcare.
  3. Integrate principles of diversity into professional nursing practice.
  4. Employ change theory in planning, implementing, evaluating, and revising systems that meet contemporary and emerging needs.
  5. Integrate legal and ethical considerations into the practice of nursing.
  6. Demonstrate proficiency at analyzing and using evidence in nursing practice.
  7. Assimilate the multiple roles of advanced nursing practice within the context of the practice setting.

Admission Requirements

The graduate nursing programs admit students twice per year. To be considered for admission, applicants must submit the completed Graduate Nursing application by the delineated deadline.

Each applicant to the MSN program will be evaluated for admission based on the following criteria:

  • Completed MSN application
  • Official college transcripts from graduating institutions
  • Baccalaureate in nursing from a regionally accredited program with ACEN, CCNE, or CNEA accreditation or,
    • RN-MSN applicants:
      • Associate or Diploma in nursing from a program with ACEN, CCNE, or CNEA accreditation and
      •  Baccalaureate degree in non-nursing field from a regionally accredited institution.
  • GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in RN program. GPAs under 3.0 may be considered for provisional admission.
  •  Current, unencumbered license as a professional registered nurse (RN) in Nebraska, or the state where practica will occur
  • Two professional references; one from applicant’s RN program faculty and one from applicant’s nursing or healthcare employer/supervisor . Two employer references may be used by those whose graduation date was more than five years ago.
  •  RN-MSN applicants must have documentation of a minimum of one year of practice as a registered nurse prior to beginning the master’s level coursework. The practice requirement may occur concurrent with the bachelor’s level coursework.
  • Applicants for whom English is a learned language are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) proficiency exam and score of 550 PBT, or 79 iBT or better. Exemptions for the English proficiency requirement are granted for non-native speakers who have received a high school diploma or more advanced degree either from an accredited U.S. institution or from an institution outside the U.S. at which English is the official language of instruction. (School code: 6058).

Honor Society for Nursing

Sigma Global Nursing Excellence, Alpha Alpha Zeta chapter

Sigma is an international nursing honor society that celebrates excellence in scholarship, leadership, and service. Membership is by invitation to nursing students and registered nurses who have demonstrated superior academic achievement, evidence of professional leadership potential, and pristine academic integrity. Becoming a Sigma member sets you apart as one of the select group of nurses who have demonstrated a personal commitment to nursing excellence.

Academic Policies

Transfer Credit

A maximum of nine credit hours may be accepted for transfer toward any graduate nursing degree. Students requesting credit for courses taken at other institutions must have those courses evaluated. The request for transfer must be approved by the program dean/director and the student’s advisor.

  • Criteria for transfer courses:
  • Only courses for which the student has earned at least a B (or the equivalent of a B) will be considered for transfer credit.
  • Courses must have been taken at a regionally accredited academic institution.
  • Nursing courses must have been taken at an Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or Commission on Collegiate Nursing Accreditation (CCNE) accredited institution.
  • Official transcripts must be received by Records and Registration.
  • Students may be required to provide catalog course descriptions and/or course syllabi for the requested courses.

Credit for Prior Learning

Students must be accepted for admission to a program and have permission from the program dean/director to obtain credit for previous learning. Previous learning will be demonstrated through a portfolio that explains how course outcomes have been met via previous experiential learning and includes supportive evidence. No more than nine credits of a degree may be earned via credit for prior learning.

Portfolio Criteria

A portfolio of evidence of prior learning must include:

  • Face page with student’s name and course for which the waiver is requested
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  •  Copy of the course syllabus
  • An narrative of how the applicant has met each of the course outcomes via previous learning and experience
  • Supportive evidence as determined by course faculty

Plan of Study

Upon acceptance to a graduate nursing program, the student and advisor will develop a plan of study to meet the degree requirements. The student and advisor share joint responsibility for progression through the program and attainment of degree requirements.

MSN Practicum Credit Hour Definition

1 credit = 45 clock hours

Course Sequencing

Sample Curriculum Plans

*The curriculum plan for fall entry will vary slightly

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Sub-Total Credits