ACADEMICS

  • Master of Science Nursing: Nurse Educator Specialization

    Nurse educators are the key resource in preparing a nursing workforce that will provide quality care to meet the health care needs of our population. They practice in academic and clinical settings, and they must be competent clinicians. However, while being a good clinician is essential, it is not necessarily sufficient for the educator role.

    The Nurse Educator Specialization program is designed to expand the knowledgebase of registered professional nurses to prepare them for the role of nurse educator in four areas: Higher education, Vocational education, Staff education, Patient education.

    The program will provide theoretical and practical knowledge in the areas of curriculum development, instructional design, advanced teaching methods, and program evaluation.

    Worcester State University offers three routes of entry for registered nurses seeking a Master of Science in Nursing degree. The pathways are:

    • Traditional entry: for students with a B.S. degree in Nursing
    • Bridge program: for registered nurses with a non-nursing B.A. or B.S. degree
    • RN-to-MS fast track: For associate-degree or diploma-prepared registered nurses seeking to proceed directly to the Master of Science in Nursing degree

    The curriculum is based on the practice dimensions of the nurse educator role, recommendations of the National League for Nursing, and the American Nurses Credentialing Center Essentials of Master’s Education. Graduates of the Nurse Educator Specialization program are eligible to sit for the National League for Nursing Certified Nurse Educator examination after meeting the experiential requirement. Graduates are also eligible to sit for the ANCC certification examination in nursing professional development.

    This 36-credit hour program is designed for students who have established an expertise in a clinical area and are now interested in nursing education. The curriculum includes coursework related to high fidelity patient simulation strategies as well as other emerging technologies and related teaching methodologies to improve education outcomes.

    The Nurse Educator Specialization curriculum is designed to meet the learning needs of students who are working full-time. Most courses are taught in the blended-learning format, which combines the best of face-to-face and online learning. The blended-learning format significantly reduces the amount of time students spend on campus, while maximizing their interaction with faculty members and fellow students.

    A post-graduate certificate program in nursing education also is available to students who have earned the Master of Science in Nursing degree.

  • Program of Study for Traditional Entry Students

    Year One

    Spring

    • NU 938 Advanced Concepts in Physiology & Pathophysiology (3 Credit)*
    • NU 908 Professional Role Development: Philosophical & Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Education (3 Credits)* 

    Summer

    • NU 937 Advance Health Assessment (3 Credits)*

    Fall 

    • NU 920 Conceptual Foundations of Nursing (3 Credits)*
    • NU 946 Biostatistics (3 Credits) 


    Year Two

     Spring 

    • NU 930 Social Policy & the Economics of the Health Care Delivery System (3 Credits)
    • NU 925 Research for Evidence Based Practice (3 Credits)*

    Summer 

    • NU 939 Advance Concepts in Pharmacology (3 Credits)*

    Fall 

    • NU 951 Nursing Leadership & Administration (3 Credits)*
    • NU 942 Teaching & Learning in the Age of Technology (4 Credits)* 


    Year Three 

    Spring 

    • NU 943 Practicum in Teaching & Learning (5 Credits)*

    *Denotes courses offered in the blending-learning format.

    Program of Study for Bridge Program Students

    This program provides registered nurses, who hold a B.A. or B.S. in a discipline other than nursing, with the opportunity to enter and complete the Master of Science in Nursing program at Worcester State University. The program prepares Bridge students for M.S.-level work by assuring that they have achieved the educational outcomes of the B.S. in Nursing program.

    Bridge Core
    NU 900 Individual Assessment (1 credit)*
    NU 901 Community Health and Health Policy (3 credits)*
    NU 902 Transition to Advanced Nursing (3 credits)*

    Year One

    Spring 

    • NU 938 Advanced Concepts in Physiology & Pathophysiology (3 Credit)*
    • NU 908 Professional Role Development: Philosophical & Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Education (3 Credits)* 

    Summer 

    • NU 937 Advance Health Assessment (3 Credits)*

    Fall 

    • NU 920 Conceptual Foundations of Nursing (3 Credits)*
    • NU 946 Biostatistics (3 Credits) 

    Year Two

     Spring 

    • NU 930 Social Policy & the Economics of the Health Care Delivery System (3 Credits)
    • NU 925 Research for Evidence Based Practice (3 Credits)*

    Summer 

    • NU 939 Advance Concepts in Pharmacology (3 Credits)*

    Fall 

    • NU 951 Nursing Leadership & Administration (3 Credits)*
    • NU 942 Teaching & Learning in the Age of Technology (4 Credits)* 

    Year Three 

    Spring 

    • NU 943 Practicum in Teaching & Learning (5 Credits)*

    *Indicates that the course is delivered in the blended-learning format.

    Bridge students must:
    1. Complete the self-evaluation assessment of prior learning tool at the time of entry into the program.
    2. Meet with their assigned graduate program advisor to plan a course of study that bridges B.S. expectations and entry into graduate nursing studies.
    3. Compile a portfolio of their professional activities according to the guidelines and submit it to the graduate program coordinator. The portfolio will be evaluated by the graduate program coordinator and an individualized educational plan will be developed to support the student in the achievement of all baccalaureate-level competencies.
    Program of Study for RN-to-MS Fast Track Students

    The RN-to-MS Fast Track program provides an opportunity for associate-degree and diploma-prepared nurses to obtain the Master of Science in Nursing Degree from WSU. The RN-to-MS Fast Track Program curriculum is characterized by flexibility and recognition of the diversity of the students who enroll.

    The RN-to-MS Fast Track program allows students to work toward their Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science in Nursing degrees in one integrated program. The Graduate Record Exam (GRE), generally required for admission to master’s degree programs, is NOT required for admission to the RN-to-MS Fast Track program.

    6 graduate credits (500 level) taken while completing the undergraduate senior year count toward both degrees only when the student meets the criteria for the Fast Track program, completes an application to the graduate nursing program through the Graduate School, and is accepted into the RN-to-MS Fast Track program during the first semester as a student in the RN-to-BS program.

    Students can typically complete the RN-to-MS Fast Track program in 9 part-time semesters. Only course grades of B- or above can be counted toward the Master of Science in Nursing degree.

    Fast Track students must take courses in the M.S. program the semester after completing the requirements for the B.S. degree. Otherwise 500-level courses taken in the senior year will count only towards the RN-to-BS degree unless they are in excess of the credits required for the B.S. degree.

    These courses may be transferred if the student has previously taken the course (per Worcester State University transfer policy) or may be taken at WSU:

    • EN 101 & EN 102 English Composition I & II (*EN 101 may be waived)
    • M A150 Introduction to Statistics (*pre requisite for NU 430-A: Research Seminar OR NU 525: Nursing Research in Advanced Practice)
    • An Accuplacer math test (offered at WSU) may be needed prior to registering for statistics at WSU
    • SO 100 Introduction to Sociology
    • PS 101 General Psychology
    • BI 161 & 162 Anatomy & Physiology I & II
    • BI 204 Microbiology or BI206 Medical Microbiology

    RN-to-MS Foundational Nursing Courses
    All nursing courses must be taken in sequence. Students must achieve a minimum grade of 80 in each nursing course. Only one nursing course may be repeated to obtain the minimum grade or required GPA and must be repeated within the 2 years.

    • NU 124 Health Informatics (3 credits)
    • NU 332 Transition to Professional Nursing (2 credits)
    • NU 342A Health Assessment (3 credits)
    • NU 525 Research for Evidence-Based Practice (3 credits)-Satisfies NU 925 requirement in the RN-to-MS Fast Track program
    • NU 432 Advancing Nursing Perspectives in Chronic Illness (8 credits)
    • NU 551 Nursing Leadership and Administration (3 credits)-Satisfies NU 951 requirement in the RN-to-MS Fast Track program
    • NU 472 Community Nursing Capstone (8 credits)

    Course descriptions for all undergraduate courses may be found in the Worcester State University undergraduate catalog.

    Specialty Courses: Nurse Educator  

    Professional Core
    • NU 908 Professional Role Development (3 credits)*
    • NU 920 Conceptual Foundations of Nursing (3 credits)*
    • NU 925 Research for Evidence-Based Practice (3 credits)*
    • NU 951 Nursing Leadership and Administration (3 credits)*
    • NU 930 Social Policy and the Economics of the Health Care Delivery System (3 credits)
    Specialty Courses
    • NU 937 Advanced Health Assessment (3 credits)*
    • NU 938 Advanced Concepts in Physiology and Pathophysiology (3 credits)*
    • NU 939 Advanced Concepts in Pharmacology (3 credits)*
    • NU 942 Teaching & Learning in the Age of Technology (4 credits)*
    • NU 943 Practicum in Teaching & Learning* (5 credits)
    • NU 946 Biostatistics (3 credits)

    *Indicates that the course is delivered in the blended-learning format.

    Outcomes

    Upon successful completion of this graduate-level nursing program, graduates are prepared to:

    • Integrate nursing, related sciences, and humanities to analyze, design, implement, and evaluate nursing care across diverse settings at the master’s level.
    • Provide leadership in the delivery and evaluation of strategies for improving delivery of high quality and safe patient care by using ethics, critical decision-making and effective working relationships from a systems perspective.
    • Direct continuous quality improvement methods and initiatives to promote a culture of safety, professional accountability, and evidence-based patient care.
    • Participate, leading when appropriate, in collaborative teams to improve care outcomes and support policy change through translational research and knowledge dissemination by generating meaningful evidence for nursing practice.
    • Integrate emerging informatics, health-care technologies, and related ethical principles into clinical decision-making processes.
    • Advocate for policies that improve of the health of the public and the profession of nursing.
    • Participate, lead, and coordinate when appropriate, inter-professional teams across care environments to reduce barriers, facilitate access, and improve health outcomes.
    • Synthesize broad ecological, global, biological, and socio-cultural determinants of health to assess the profession’s leadership role and accountability toward improving the population’s health.
    • Demonstrate master’s level professional practice through the development of nursing interventions and advocacy to implement safe, quality care to diverse populations in a variety of settings and roles.
    • Integrate clinical prevention and population health concepts in the development of culturally relevant and linguistically appropriate nursing education, communication strategies, and interventions.

    In addition to the knowledge and practice components of the outcomes listed above, the behavior of graduate students should reflect an internally consistent value system. It is expected that graduates will value scientific inquiry as a basis for professional practice and will seek to increase their contributions to the nursing profession.

  • Admission Requirements
    In addition to the general admission requirements

    Traditional Entry
    • Baccalaureate degree in Nursing
    • Introductory or undergraduate courses in statistics and research
    • Unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in Massachusetts
    Bridge Program
    • B.A. or B.S. degree in non-nursing discipline
    • Introductory or undergraduate courses in statistics and research
    • Unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in Massachusetts
    RN- to- MS Fast Track
    • Associate of Science degree in nursing or diploma in nursing
    • Unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in Massachusetts

    The RN student applying to WSU as a transfer student can receive up to 72 credits transferable from associate degree colleges and a maximum of 90 credits from four year colleges or universities.

    Students interested in applying to the RN-to-MS program are advised to contact the Nursing Department at 508-929-8129.

    This program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, D.C. 20036.


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    Melissa Duprey
    Program Coordinator

    Ghosh Science & Technology Center
    Office ST-222L
    508-929-8419
    mduprey1@worcester.edu