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Nurse Practitioner Education Requirements

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Clinical Nursing
  • Critical Care Nursing
  • Direct-Entry Midwifery – LM, CPM
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse Training
  • Mental Health Nursing
  • Neonatal Nursing
  • Nurse Anesthetist
  • Nurse Assistant or Patient Care Assistant
  • Nurse Midwife
  • Nurse Practitioner or Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Nursing Administration
  • Nursing for Adults and Seniors
  • Nursing Science
  • Occupational Health Nursing
  • Operating Room and Surgical Nursing
  • Pediatric Nursing
  • Public Health Nurse or Community Nurse
  • Registered Nurse

Education Requirements for Nurse Practitioners

Education requirements to enter the career can vary slightly depending on the specialty, but at least a master’s degree education is necessary. Some of the potential care specialties of a NP include: pediatric or adult, geriatric, women’s or neonatal, acute and occupational healthcare.

Master’s education programs take 2-3 years to complete. They focus on providing students with the skills necessary to enter professional health settings. Graduates are eligible to seek professional certification. Common courses include health promotion, pathophysiology, pharmacology, nursing theories.

While completing a Master of Science in Nursing is generally enough to enter the profession, students may opt to complete a doctoral degree program to further enhance their career opportunities and expertise. Programs teach advanced practices in order to better meet patient needs. They can also qualify graduates to become teachers in nursing. Common courses include population health, leadership and behavior complexity.

Licensure

Obtaining licensure as a registered nurse through the National Council Licensure Examination – Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), is required for all nurse practitioners. This is a post-undergraduate prerequisite to becoming an RN, which is a prerequisite to becoming a NP. Passing the NCLEX-RN proves that RNs have the necessary skills to work in the field.

Nurse Practitioner Credentialing

After completing master’s degree programs, graduates are eligible to obtain professional certification as NPs. Nurse practitioner programs normally focus on one specialty area of nursing and graduates generally choose to seek certification in the same specialty. The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the American Nurses Credentialing Center are two credentialing bodies that offer certifications in nursing. These certifications must be renewed every five years in order to continue development within the profession.

Career Outlook and Salary Information

In order to become a nurse practitioner, one must first be a registered nurse. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS, (www.bls.gov ), nurse anesthetists, midwives and practitioner positions are expected to increase by 31% between 2014 and 2024, which is much faster than the national average for all career fields. Additionally, the BLS reported that the mean annual salary for nurse practitioners was $101,260 in May, 2015.

Being a nurse practitioner is a rewarding career choice that requires first becoming a registered nurse (RN), and then completing a master’s degree and passing an exam. Nurse practitioner is expected to grow 31% between 2014-2024, a rate much higher than the job market as a whole. This is a growing field for a career as a medical care professional.

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Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a chronic pain nurse practitioner. Get a quick view of the schooling.

Advanced practice nurses are required to complete at least a master’s degree in a specialty field of nursing, and those wanting.

To become a nurse practitioner, students with a BSN will need to enroll in a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. These.

Nurse practitioners require a significant amount of formal education. Learn more about the degree programs, licensing.

  • Doctorate
      • Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • Master
      • M.S. Nursing – Primary Care
      • M.S. Nursing – Associate to Master’s – Nursing Administration
      • M.S. Nursing – Nursing Administration (Post-MBA)
      • M.S. Nursing and Master of Business Administration
      • Master of Business Administration – Health Care Administration
      • M.S. Nursing – Associate to Master’s – Nursing Education
  • Bachelor
      • B.S. Nursing – Post Licensure (RN-BSN)
      • B.S. General Studies – Life Sciences
      • B.S. Healthcare Administration
  • Associate
      • A.S. General Studies – Life Sciences
  • Non-Degree
      • Post-Master’s Certificate – Primary Care
      • Post-Master’s Certificate – Nursing Administration
      • Post-Master’s Certificate – Nursing Education

Get Started with Indiana Wesleyan University

3 Grand Canyon University

Minimum eligibility requirements:
  • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
School locations:
  • Doctorate
      • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
      • Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
      • EdD in Organizational Leadership – Health Care Administration
  • Master
      • MBA and MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems (dual degree)
      • MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems
      • M.S. in Nursing: Nursing Education
      • MBA: Health Systems Management
      • MS in Health Care Administration
      • MS in Nursing: Nursing Education
  • Bachelor
      • BS in Nursing (Registered Nurse – R.N. to BSN)
      • BS in Health Care Administration
      • BS in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
      • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science

Get Started with Grand Canyon University

4 Colorado Technical University

Minimum eligibility requirements:
  • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
School locations:

Get Started with Colorado Technical University

5 Capella University

Minimum eligibility requirements:
  • Must complete an application online and submit transcripts for their highest degree earned.
School locations:

  • Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • M.S. Nursing – Primary Care
  • M.S. Nursing – Associate to Master’s – Nursing Administration
  • M.S. Nursing – Nursing Administration (Post-MBA)
  • M.S. Nursing and Master of Business Administration
  • Master of Business Administration – Health Care Administration
  • M.S. Nursing – Associate to Master’s – Nursing Education
  • B.S. Nursing – Post Licensure (RN-BSN)
  • B.S. General Studies – Life Sciences
  • B.S. Healthcare Administration
  • A.S. General Studies – Life Sciences
  • Post-Master’s Certificate – Primary Care
  • Post-Master’s Certificate – Nursing Administration
  • Post-Master’s Certificate – Nursing Education
  • View more
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
    • EdD in Organizational Leadership – Health Care Administration
    • MBA and MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems (dual degree)
    • MS in Nursing: Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems
    • M.S. in Nursing: Nursing Education
    • MBA: Health Systems Management
    • MS in Health Care Administration
    • MS in Nursing: Nursing Education
    • BS in Nursing (Registered Nurse – R.N. to BSN)
    • BS in Health Care Administration
    • BS in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
    • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science
    • View more

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