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Post-Master's Certificate

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Do you hold a master's degree in nursing and wish to specialize in an area of nursing not covered in your initial master's program? The Post-Master's Certificate Program provides this opportunity at The University of New Mexico College of Nursing. Graduates are eligible to seek certification in one of the following concentrations:

To learn concentration objectives, please review the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) concentration you are interested in pursuing. Any of the concentration majors offered by the College are available as Post-Master's concentrations, subject to admission criteria and screening for limited enrollment areas.

Graduates will be awarded a Post-Master's Certificate indicating the specific concentration completed. Graduates are eligible to take a national certification exam for the Post-Master's Certificate specialty. Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) graduates, first need to pass the national certification exam to be eligible for licensure in that specialty in New Mexico. APRN Graduates are responsible for determining any additional requirements for certification and eligibility to practice in a particular state.

Gap Analysis & Individualized Program of Study

  • All incoming Post-Master's Certificate students' records undergo a Gap Analysis (a review of previous master's courses and required courses in the chosen MSN concentration.)
  • Students schedule an appointment with the faculty coordinator of chosen concentration to review the gap analysis and to develop a specific program of studies.
  • All APRN and Midwifery core, concentration specific courses, and clinical experiences required for certification are delineated in an individualized program of study for the incoming student.
  • The Program of Studies consists of courses in the chosen area (at least 15 graduate credit hours) designated by the Concentration Coordinator with approval from the Associate Dean for Education and Innovation.

There are three distinct tracks with the Post-Master’s Certificate program (see descriptions below). Students enter Track A, B, or C depending on their previous educational preparation and their educational goals.

Required Core Courses for Post-Master’s Certificate Students

Through the Gap Analysis, Post-Master’s Certificate students must demonstrate prior successful completion of course work equivalent to the required core courses and APRN and Midwifery core courses or must complete these courses as a part of their individualized program of study based on their chosen track and concentration.

MSN Core Courses required for Tracks A, B, and C:

  • NURS 501 Theoretical Foundations of Advanced Nursing Practice
  • NURS 503 Research in Nursing
  • NURS 505 Health Care Policy, Systems & Financing for Advanced Practice Roles

MSN APRN and Midwifery Core Courses required for Tracks A & B:

  • NURS 526 Advanced Pathophysiology
  • NURS 539 Advanced Pediatric Health & Developmental Assessment (PNP-PCs only)
    OR
    NURS 540 Advanced Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning
  • NURS 543 Pharmacological Principles of Clinical Therapeutics
  • NURS 553 Nurse-Midwifery Professional Practice (Nurse-Midwifery only)
    OR
    NURS 594 Advanced Practice Seminar

NOTE: Students without recent (i.e. past 3-5 years) clinical experience may be required to complete the above APRN and Midwifery core courses

MSN Education Core Course required for Track C:

  • NURS 527 Pathophysiology, Physical Assessment, and Pharmacology for Nursing Education

Post-Master’s Certificate Track Descriptions

Track A - Current MSN Adding APRN Population Focus

Track A is for students who have an MSN in an area other than advanced practice (i.e. Clinical Nurse Leaders, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nursing Administration, and Nursing Education) and who wish to become a nurse practitioner or nurse-midwife.

Core courses may be waived based on a review of previous master’s courses and a gap analysis with the required courses in the MSN concentration. Other than core courses, all APRN and Midwifery core and concentration specific courses, along with the full complement of clinical hours in that concentration, must be completed. Coursework must be completed within three (3) years.

Track B – Current APRN Adding a Population Focus

Track B is designed for nurse practitioners or nurse-midwives with an MSN who wish to expand their practice by adding an additional population focus. Most MSN Core courses are waived as long as equivalent work has been completed as part of the previous MSN degree.

Note: PMC students with an MSN in nursing enrolled in the MSN Education and/or Administration concentrations do not have to complete the master’s examination. APRN concentrations’ requirements for NURS 597 Applied Examination differ depending upon their concentration. The Applied Examination is the concentration specific exam that prepares students to take national certification exams.

Track C – Nursing Education Post-Master’s Certificate

Track C is for students who have an MSN in an area other than Nursing Education who wish to add a nursing education certificate to their credentials.

Outcome of the Post-Master’s Certificate Program

At the completion of the Post-Master's Certificate programs in nursing, the graduate is prepared to:

  • Analyze theoretical formulations as a basis for nursing practice, education, and administration.
  • Participate in research about the nature of health/illness and the practice of nursing.
  • Utilize advanced clinical knowledge and skill to promote, maintain, and/or restore optimum wellness to client systems.
  • Assume leadership roles in nursing practice, education, or administration.
  • Assume responsibility for developing health care policy relative to social, ethical, legal, economic, and political issues that affect nursing.
  • Organize and develop collaborative relationships for the improvement of health care on an agency, organization, or legislative level.