Nov 17, 2018  
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog 
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

College of Nursing

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Graduate Faculty and Fields of Interest

Armstrong, Debbie Assistant Professor, Adult Nursing (2012), PhD University of Massachusetts Worcester (2012). Specializations:  Spinal cord injury, pathophysiology.

Asselin, Marilyn Associate Professor, Adult Nursing, (2007). ASN Community College of RI, 1974, BS in Nursing Salve Regina College, 1981, MS Nursing Education from University of Rhode Island, 1987, PhD in Nursing, University of Rhode Island, 1998. Specializations: Reflective practice, qualitative methods, reflective teaching, teaching methods.

Blier, Diane Lecturer, Adult Nursing (2009), MSN, RN, NP-C, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (2005), BSN, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (2003), AS RN Program, Bristol Community College (1995), LPN, Southeastern Regional Technical Institute (1982). Specialization: Adult health, palliative care, nursing education.

Brisbois, Maryellen Assistant Professor, Community Nursing, PhD, APHN-BC, University of Massachusetts Worcester. Specialization: Breast cancer among Latinas, disparities.

Caron, Anne Marie Lecturer, Adult Nursing (2016), DNP, RN, ANP-BC, Curry College (1997) BS Nursing , University Massachusetts Dartmouth (2006 ) MSN and (2015) DNP. Specialization: Long term care, geriatric medicine, antibiotic stewrdship, chronic illness management

Chin, Elizabeth  Assistant Professor, Adult Nursing, PhD, RN, ANP, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (2004), BS Special Education, Bridgewater State College (1998), AS Nursing, Laboure College (1979) Specialization: Chronic Illness.

Elliott, Kathleen Lecturer, Adult Nursing, ANP-C.   Post-Master’s ANP, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (2001), MS Nursing; Critical Care Clinical Specialist, University of Massachusetts Boston (1995), BS Nursing, Saint Joseph’s College (1990). Specializations: Adult health, nursing education.

Fain, James Professor of Adult Nursing (2005), PhD, RN, BC-ADM, FAAN.  BSN 1976 University of Rhode Island, MS 1979 University of Alabama in Birmingham, PhD 1985 University of Connecticut. Specializations: Diabetes care and education, psychometric evaluation of research instruments.

Gadbois, Christine Lecturer (2015), DNP, APHN-BC.  DNP 2014 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, MS 2010 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, BSN 2000 Rhode Island College, ADN 1987 Community College Rhode Island.  Specializations:  Administration, public health, public policy, behavioral health, disabilities, home health, LTC.

Hunter-Revell, Susan M (Chairperson, Adult Nursing)  Associate Professor, Adult Nursing (1998), PhD, RN.   BS 1992 Fitchburg State College, MS 1997 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, PhD, University of Rhode Island, 2007. Specializations: Adult health, theory, spinal cord injury, technology in the classroom.

Keating, Sharon Lecturer, Adult Nursing (2016), RN, FNP. Boston College (1993) BS Nursing, University of Rhode Island (1997) MS Family Nurse Practitioner. Specialization: Technology to improve weight loss in adolescents, emerging adult patients

McCurry, Mary (DNP Graduate Program Director) Associate Professor, Adult Nursing (2000), PhD, RNBC, ANP, ACNP.   BS 1986 University of Massachusetts Amherst, MS 1996 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, PhD Boston College (2006) . Specialization: Adult Nurse Practitioner, theory and philosophy, decision-making, informal caregivers, technology in the classroom.

Rudd-Arieta, Margaret  Lecturer, Community Nursing (1999), DNP, PPCNP-BC.  BSN 1983 Salem State University, MSN 1988 Boston College, DNP 2014 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.  Board Certified Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner.  Specialization: Pediatrics, ermerging adults, Type I Diabetes, asthma, informatics

Russell, Gail  Professor Emeritus, Community Nursing (2003), EdD, RN.  BS 1968 University of Massachusetts Amherst, MS 1973 Texas Woman’s University, EdD 1992 Columbia University. Specializations: Community health, health care policy, health services administration.

Schuler, Monika Lecturer, Adult Nursing (2007), PhD, RN, CNE.  AS 2007 Bristol Community College, MS 2012 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, PhD 2015 Northeastern University.  Specializations: Role development and nursing education.

Sethares, Kristen (PhD Graduate Program Director) Professor, Adult Nursing (2001), PhD, RN, CNE.   BSN 1987 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, MSN 1993 University of Massachusetts Boston, PhD, CNE 2003 Boston College School of Nursing. Specialization: Adult health, chronic cardiac illness, self-care of illness.

Sobczak, Janet  (Associate Professor, Community Health Nursing)  Associate Professor, Community Nursing (2015), PhD, PHMNP-BC, PPCNS-BC.  BSN 1983 Fitchburg State University, MSN 1989 University of Virginia, 1999 PhD Medical School of Georgia.  Board certified Adult Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing Clinical Nurse Specialist and Board Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.  Specializations:  Substance addictions, eating disorders, trauma, women’s mental health, sexuality qualitative methods, mixed methods.

Sosa, Marybeth Lecturer, Adult Nursing (2006), PhD(c), RN.  BS 1998 Boston College, MS 2006 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, PhD(c) 2014 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Specializations: Adult health, cardiac critical care.

Stover, Caitlin (Chairperson, Community Health Nursing, MS Graduate Program Director)  Assistant Professor of Community Nursing (2012), PhD, RN, PHCNS-BC, CNE.  BSN 1997 Boston College, MS 2008 Worcester State University, PhD 2011 University of Massachusetts Worcester.  Specializations: LGBTQ health, health disparities, community-based participatory research, on-line synchronous focus groups. 

Viveiros, Jennifer, Lecturer, Adult Nursing,  PhD, CNE,  BSN 1996 Georgetown University, MS - Nursing Education 2004 University Rhode Island, PhD 2015 University Massachusetts Dartmouth. Specializations: Memory, cognitive impairment, education

The College of Nursing at UMass Dartmouth offers several graduate programs:  the Master of Science (MS) degree in Nursing, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), and the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in Nursing.   As of Fall 2011, students interested in advance practice roles may enroll only in the DNP program.  The curricula in all programs consists of didactic and experiential learning. The courses are designed to be delivered  on-site or as blended on-line learning. They are no entirely on-line programs, nor is there any plan to move in that direction.

The Nursing MS and DNP degrees at UMass Dartmouth are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, N.W. Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036 (202-887-6791).

The outcomes of the nursing program are to:

1.  Model nursing practice that demonstrates respect for human dignity, ethical responsibility, interpersonal connectedness and equity to promote health and reduce risk.

2.  Master communication, collaboration and consultation strategies to address complex health issues in a variety of forums and formats.

3.  Evaluate outcomes using accepted professional standards and evidence-based benchmarks to improve quality within and across systems so that consumers and staff can contribute to continuous quality improvement initiatives.

4.  Translate evidence, clinical judgment, research findings, and theoretical perspectives to improve practice, care environments and maximize health outcomes.

5.  Synthesize scientific knowledge and humanistic perspectives in a variety of roles and areas of practice.

6.  Influence nursing practice and health policy to shape care delivery, addressing gaps resulting from growing health care needs at the local, state, national and international levels.

7.  Use organizational and systems leadership in collaboration with interdisciplinary team members and community partners to promote health, guide clients through the illness experience and improve the health systems.

8    Integrate effective use of informatics and technology to support quality improvement initiatives, clinical decision-making and safe care.

9.  Assume a leadership role in advancing, fostering and maintaining nursing values and standards in a variety of settings and roles for individuals, populations and systems.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must submit the required application materials to the Office of Graduate Studies & Admissions. These include:

  • Application form (name, address, program to which seeking admission, etc.)
  • Application fee
  • Official transcript reflecting either a Bachelor of Science of Nursing (B.S.N.) degree from a nursing accredited program or a baccalaureate degree in a related program (see Graduate Admission Program for RNs with a Non-nursing Baccalaureate Degree). Official transcripts of any other undergraduate or graduate work must also be submitted.
  • Cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.000 or higher in undergraduate study.
  • Official GRE score.  (Required for PhD applicants only.)
  • Three letters of recommendation. These should include 1) references from the dean, chairperson, or faculty member of the student’s undergraduate program if recently graduated and 2) a reference from the current or a recent employer. Letters of recommendation should be solicited from individuals capable of evaluating the applicant’s potential for academic success, commitment to nursing or quality of practice.
  • Statement of Purpose. The admission process in the College of Nursing attaches weight to this statement. Candidates should give considerable thought to the aspects of (a) professional development and areas of expertise; (b) professional goals; and (c) appropriate “fit” between applicant’s goals, background and the degree sought.
  • Writing sample. (Not required for Nursing MS or DNP applicants.)
  • Professional resume.
  • Pre-admission interview may occur.
  • Evidence of a current license to practice as a Registered Nurse in the United States.
  • Minimum one (1) year of experience as a registered nurse. (Not required for Nursing MS applicants.) 
  • Consult the College of Nursing web site for application deadlines.

Graduate Admission Program for RNs with a Non-Nursing Baccalaureate Degree

RNs who hold a BA or BS in a related, non-nursing field may be considered for admission to the MS or DNP Program in Nursing. Related fields include psychology, sociology, anthropology, biological areas, and health services. Other fields of study will be evaluated on an individual basis.

All other admission requirements to the program must be met. Students completing the program are awarded a Master of Science degree in Nursing or Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. No Nursing BS degree is awarded. During this program, students complete a portfolio to demonstrate expected undergraduate nursing outcomes. They also take an additional three (3) graduate credits in nursing, NUR 503 (Transitions for Advanced Nursing Practice), prior to enrolling in graduate courses.

Financial Assistance

Graduate students are eligible for financial aid, such as loans or work study. Eligibility is dependent upon income. Applications are available from the Office of Financial Aid on the first floor of the Foster Administration building. Please refer to the chapter on “Expenses and Financial Assistance.”

A limited number of teaching assistantships are available. Teaching assistants work with department faculty for 10- 20 hours a week and are compensated with a stipend and tuition/partial fee remission. Teaching assistants might assist in direct supervision of foundational clinical experiences or support faculty teaching responsibilities. Part-time teaching assistantships are available depending on the needs of the department (10 hours per week).

Research assistantships become available as faculty are awarded scientific or program grants. Announcements of the requirements will be posted on the web site, or faculty will directly contact students who have demonstrated interest and skills in the research area. You may wish to make your field of interest known to faculty.

A limited number of scholarships are available to nursing graduate students. Additional funds are traditionally available through memberships in the following organizations. While small in amount, these awards tend to be readily available and require minimal application data. Explore all options that might pertain.

District State Nurses Association–MNA, District III, etc.

Sigma Theta Tau Chapter–Theta Kappa or your original chapter

Specialty Nursing Organizations–Oncology; Critical care; Emergency room

Alumni Organizations–Particularly diploma schools

Organizational Affiliations–Hospitals; parent corporations; local communities

Specialty Categories–Black Nurses Association

For students preparing for the faculty role (Nurse Educator option), funding may be available on an annual basis if the Nurse Faculty Loan Program award was received in the College.  This is a loan-forgiveness program that must be renewed annually.  MS Program Director can provide more details.


Caitlin Stover, PhD, RN, PHCNS-BC, CNE
MS Graduate Program Director
College of Nursing
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
North Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300

Dr Mary McCurry
DNP Graduate Program Director
College of Nursing
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
North Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300

Dr Kristen Sethares
PhD Graduate Program Director
College of Nursing
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
North Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300


Information sessions for the graduate Nursing program are conducted regularly.  Contact us at 508-910-6487 or visit us on-line at “”.

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