Mar 18, 2018  
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog 
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Nursing MS

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The Nursing MS program offers small classes, close contact with a diverse faculty and easy access.  Successful completion of a minimum of 37 to 39 credits (depending on option and matriculation year) is necessary to achieve the master’s degree. Six (6) of these credits may be taken at UMass Dartmouth prior to matriculation.  A total of six (6) credits may be transferred from another graduate program following appropriate review and approval.

The Nursing MS program prepares graduates for a nursing leadership role in either Adult Health or Community Health Nursing, and also in the functional area of educator or manager.  Many courses are scheduled to permit part-time study.  The Nursing MS program prepares the nurse leader who:

1.  Synthesizes specialized and diverse knowledge for application in nursing practice.

2.  Applies principles of organization and system leadership to promote high quality and safe patient care to individuals, families, groups and populations.

3.  Applies quality principles within an organization.

4.  Uses evidence to guide nursing practice, address patient problems and disseminate results.

5.  Interprets information from a variety of healthcare technologies to integrate and coordinate care.

6.  Influences health system and health policy to shape care delivery to individuals, families, groups and populations across the lifespan.

7.  Engage in inter-professional collaboration to promote health, guide clients through the illness experience and improve the health system.

8.  Applies the principles of culturally appropriate care to plan, deliver, manage and evaluate healthcare to individuals, families, groups and populations.

9.  Influences healthcare outcomes through nursing practice by integrating advanced scientific, clinical and systems knowledge.

Selection of a Clinical Option

Each student specifies one clinical option at the time of admission. Transfers to other options may be made on a space available basis if the student meets additional criteria specific to the other option. Changing options may result in loss of credits applicable to final degree.

Clinical Practicum

Clinical practica are essential components of MS level graduate nursing education and offer the best opportunity to apply new knowledge and specialized skills in each advanced nursing practice option.

Clinical experiences vary according to the focus of each option. Typically, there will be 12 hours of clinical each week in the practicum experiences.

Clinical placements are determined by agency/preceptor availability and student learning needs. It should be noted that appropriate clinical preceptors are typically only available during weekdays (although some exceptions do occur).


Adult Health Option

Adult Nurse Practitioner

(NOTE: This option will be inactivated when current students have graduated.)

The Adult Nurse Practitioner track prepares the student for management of primary and chronic health problems in adult populations. A foundation in pathophysiology, health assessment, and clinical pharmacology – in addition to precepted clinical practicuma – facilitates the development of diagnostic and management skills. A nursing framework emphasizing wellness and system wide client advocacy strategies is threaded throughout this track.

Upon completion of the Adult Nurse Practitioner track, students are eligible for the Adult Health Practitioner Examination offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. The examination is now offered at approved computer centers throughout the year.

Total credits: 43


Clinical is based upon 4 clock hours for each clinical credit
Total clinical hours greater than 500
Total credits = 43

Advanced Practice

(NOTE:  This option will be inactivated when current students have graduated.)

The Advanced Practice track prepares the student in the area of education or a clinical specialist in medical-surgical nursing. Students complete a 27-30 credit core in the MS in Adult Health. They then select 12-15 credits in their functional area of interest (education; clinical specialist).

Select from either Clinical (CNS) or education focus

Education Focus: 15 credits

Select two from the following list: *

  • One course free elective or Independent study in Education (potential practicum hours). If supervised Teaching Assistant, hours can be counted toward teaching practicum hours - 3 credits

* Education focus selects 3 credits of practicum between 622 and 624; CNS selects 6 practicum credits (622; 624)

* Requirements for Advanced Practice exam = Advanced Assessment, Pharmacology, Pathophysiology and 500 hours practicum; if desired may slightly exceed 42 credits in Education focus

Total credits: 42

Community Nursing Option

(NOTE:  This option will be inactivated when current students have graduated.)

Advanced Practice

This track prepares graduates skilled in the advanced clinical practice of community nursing. Community nursing is defined as a focus on the health needs of population groups. The graduate will be proficient in synthesizing a combined theoretical framework from both nursing and public health, and in utilizing theory-based clinical decision making. Five clinical competencies are expected: beginning researcher, clinician, educator, consultant, and clinical program manager. The professional nurse with advanced practice skills is able to design and implement programs, using objectives from “Healthy People 2020” to target the needs of vulnerable populations. Students complete 33 credits in the MS in Community Health and 9 credits of functional options and  electives.

Function options

select one category below— either administrative, education, or general nursing knowledge:

Administrative: 6 credits

  • XXX Management elective - 3 credits
Education: 6 credits

General Nursing Knowledge: 6 credits

  • NUR xxx Elective - 3 credits

Total credits: 42


Clinical hours 1 credit = 4 hours
minimum 500 clinical hours

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