Master of Science in Nursing

The Master of Science in Nursing program is designed to prepare individuals for careers in service, education, primary care and research. Emphasis is given to developing the advanced practice skills necessary to provide expert nursing care to clients either directly through clinical practice, or indirectly through the avenues of administration, research or education. Utilizing advanced knowledge and critical thinking skills along with a foundational caring philosophy and health promotion, the program prepares individuals to meet new challenges and the provision of holistic health care. Essential leadership and management skills are integrated with current theory and research in these areas.

The Master of Science in Nursing program builds on UT Tyler's undergraduate program in nursing and provides a firm basis for doctoral level education. There are several options within the MSN degree: administration, nurse practitioner, and education. There is also a Nursing Education Certificate program, a UTSW Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner Completion option, a RN-MSN option, and a coordinated MSN/MBA degree plan.

The MSN-Administration degree option prepares the graduate to apply leadership and management skills to become the essential link between the vision and mission of the larger health care organization and the unit-based system of patient care. Students develop expertise in resource allocation through using professional skills in assessing and analyzing health care needs in the practice setting.

The MSN-Education degree option prepares the graduate to apply teaching-leaning theory, principles of curriculum development, evaluation methodology and role socialization as a nurse educator in various settings including health care organizations and institutions of higher learning. The graduate develops expertise as an educator of nursing students, patients, consumers and other individuals and groups.

The MSN-Nurse Practitioner degree option prepares the graduate for advanced clinical practice roles with specific population groups in various settings. The graduate develops expertise as a primary care provider with advanced practice skills in the assessment and management of health needs as well as in patient education, consultant and researcher roles.

The RN-MSN degree option is for RNs with an associate degree or diploma who may be eligible for early admission into the nursing graduate program. Combined credit toward the BSN and MSN degrees is earned and the student is awarded the BSN and MSN degrees simultaneously on completion of the program.

The coordinated MSN-MBA degree prepares the nurse executive to ensure excellence in client care services and also to impact the business environment in which nurses practice. This degree plan incorporates content in management, leadership, economics, finance, and marketing into a framework for nursing service and health care administration. Students enrolling for this coordinated degree option must meet the admission requirements for both Nursing and Business Administration.

The UT Southwestern Women's Health Care Nurse Practitioner (UTSW-WHCNP) MSN Completion Program allows the UTSW-WHCNP graduate to complete the degree requirements for the Master of Science in Nursing. WHCNP graduates who earned a baccalaureate degree in nursing prior to entering the UTSW program and who are nationally certified as a WHCNP are eligible for admission.

The Nursing Education Certificate program prepares the nurse to apply teaching-learning theory, principles of curriculum development, evaluation methodology, and role socialization as a nurse educator in a variety of settings. The program is designed to provide essential knowledge and skills required by nurse educators and facilitate the transition of the nurse from the clinical setting into the role of nurse educator.

Objectives

At the completion of the Master's program, the graduate should be able to: 1) extrapolate and evaluate the influence of social, political, educational and economic trends on health care delivery and health policy; 2) analyze the ethical and legal obligations of professional service to humans, and synthesize these concepts into a professional role; 3) critique principles of leadership/management for application within professional nursing practice; 4) appraise and extend the body of nursing knowledge through scientific inquiry; 5) initiate and evaluate responsive and responsible actions to influence the impact of nursing on health care delivery; 6) synthesize strategies for the provision of compassionate and comprehensive health care through a variety of modalities and in multiple settings; and 7) pursue additional advanced educational opportunities and certifications.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the general graduate admission requirements of the university, students applying for admission to the MSN program are expected to submit a portfolio for evaluation consisting of the following:

  1. Submit references with the completed application (2 professional, 2 academic);
  2. Submit transcripts verifying a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 for the last 60 semester credit hours of undergraduate work;
  3. Hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from a nationally accredited College; RN-MSN applicants must hold either an Associate Degree in Nursing or Diploma in Nursing.
  4. Show proof of current licensure as a Registered Nurse in the state(s) where clinical practicum will occur;
  5. Complete an undergraduate statistics course with a grade of "C" or better;
  6. Submit one-page essay describing career goals.
  7. A satisfactory score on the verbal/quantitative portions of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT). The entrance exam requirement is waived for MSN applicants with a grade point average of 3.2 or above for the last 60 semester credit hours of undergraduate course work. RN-MSN applicants are required to take the entrance exam.
  8. Applicants from countries other than the United States must also meet the admission requirements for international students seeking a graduate degree as listed in the University catalog.
  9. Consideration for admission is also given to one or more of the following: the applicant's demonstrated commitment to his or her chosen field of study; socioeconomic background; and involvement and level of responsibility related to other factors, including extracurricular activities, employment, community service, first generation of family to graduate from an undergraduate program, family responsibility for raising children, multilingual proficiency, or geographic region of residence.
  10. Students must demonstrate proficiency in the use of the English language. If a student's verbal score on the admission examination is below an acceptable minimum, the student must pass an English proficiency test during the first semester in the program. A foreign student must score a minimum of 550 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and have a minimum raw score of 50 on each of the three sections of the examination. Only the TOEFL examination given by the Educational Testing Service is acceptable. The student will be notified by the MBA advisor whether he/she has or has not been accepted in the MBA program.

Criminal Background Check

All applicants who are admitted to the MSN program in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences are required to complete a criminal background check. No student will be allowed entry to a nursing course without a clear report or a letter from the Texas Board of Nursing certifying that any criminal history is not a danger to the public.

Semester Credit Hour Limitations

A student may not register for graduate nursing courses unless they have the permission of the Associate Dean or are fully or conditionally admitted into the graduate nursing program.

Transfer of Credit

A student may transfer a maximum of nine semester hours of graduate credit in which a grade of "B" or better has been earned from approved institutions. Transfer credit is subject to the approval of the Associate Dean. All coursework applied to the degree must be taken within a six-year period of time.

Degree Requirements for the MSN Degree

The following courses are core courses that must be taken by students in the MSN, MSN-MBA, RN-MSN, and the MSN-NP options.

NURS 5308: Contemporary Healthcare Ethics

3

NURS 5312: Nursing Theory

3

NURS 5320: Research Design

3

NURS 5356: Health Promotion

3

HECC 5317: Biometric Methods (or equivalent)

3

NURS 5334: Professional Scholarship*

3

or

 

NURS 5395: Thesis*

6

Total:

18-21 Sem. Credit Hours

+NURS 5324 Health Care Informatics is taken by NP students

The following courses are taken according to the role the student selects within the MSN option. Clinical courses are followed by a ratio which indicates the number of didactic hours per week in the classroom followed by credit hours earned in an advanced practice setting.

Education

The role area of education consists of four required courses (two theoretical nursing education courses, one practicum course consisting of 112.5 practicum hours, and one cognate course). The student may also select electives of interest (2 electives if non-thesis option chosen) to complete the 36 SCH required for the degree.

NURS 5327: Nursing Educ Curriculum Dev.

3

NURS 5328: Evaluation in Nursing Education

3

NURS 5329: Nurse Educ Role Strategies and Practicum (0-3)

3

Plus one of the following EDUC courses:

3

EDUC 5303: Applied Learning Theories

 

EDUC 5309: Educational Technology

 

EDUC 5320: World Wide Web Applications

 

EDUC 5352: Curriculum Foundations

 

 

12 Sem. Credit Hours

3-6 free elective hours*

Total:

36 Sem. Credit Hours

Administration

The role area of administration requires four courses (three theoretical/practicum courses consisting of 37.5 practicum hours each and one cognate course). The student may also select electives of interest (2 electives if non-thesis option chosen) to complete the 36 SCH required for the degree.

NURS 5315: Assessment of Nursing Management

3

NURS 5326: Implementation of Nursing Management

3

NURS 5330: Evaluation of Nursing Management

3

Plus one of the following MANA courses:

 

MANA 5320: Human and Organizational Behavior or

3

MANA 5350: Human Resource Management

3

 

12 Sem. Credit Hours

3-6 free elective hours*

Total:

36 Sem. Credit Hours

Practice/Nurse Practitioner

NURS 5350: Advanced Pathophysiology

3

NURS 5352: Advanced Health Assessment

3

NURS 5354: Advanced Nursing Pharmacotherapeutics

3

+ NP degree plan (NP)

Total:

48 Sem. Credit Hours

*The number of elective hours varies based on the student's choice of thesis or non-thesis track.

+ specific for each program partnership (see program for Nurse Practitioners for additional information)

RN-MSN

Students complete 22 SCH at the undergraduate level and then are admitted to the selected master's option. Twenty-one SCH of graduate core courses are completed by all RN-MSN students. Advanced Pathophysiology and Advanced Health Assessment are considered as core courses for the RN-MSN student. Course work for the role of nursing administration or nursing education is then taken as described above. NP-track options are also available. The student has the option of writing a thesis or conducting a scholarly project. A total of 36-39 SCH of graduate course work is required depending upon whether thesis or non-thesis option is taken.

Courses taken to complete BSN level of degree first year:

NURS 3415: Professional Transitions*

4

NURS 4501: Community Health**(+)

5

NURS 4333: Nursing Research

3

NURS 4631: Professional Synthesis (+)

6

Elective (upper division)

4

Upper Division BSN Credits

22 Sem. Credit Hours

*Advanced placement credit = 30 SCH

**Offered for RNs only during Summer Session

(+)Clinical component

At this point, a student may choose to pursue BSN only. Remaining courses for BSN include the following 3 courses:

NURS 3303: Pathophysiology of Care

NURS 3312: Health Assessment for Licensed Nurses

NURS 4234: Issues in Professional Nursing

Graduate Core Courses that must be completed by all RN-MSN students:

NURS 5350: Advanced Pathophysiology

3

NURS 5356: Health Promotion

3

NURS 5308: Contemporary Healthcare Ethics

3

NURS 5352: Advanced Health Assessment

3

NURS 5312: Nursing Theory

3

HECC 5317: Biometric Methods (or equivalent)

3

NURS 5320: Research Design

3

NURS 5334: Professional Scholarship

3

or

 

NURS 5395: Thesis

6

Total

24-27 Sem. Credit Hours

The remaining courses are taken according to the role the student selects within the RN-MSN option. MSN-Administration and MSN-Education options will total 36-39 SCH. The MSN-NP track will total 48 SCH.