Master in Clinical Nurse Specialist

Master in Clinical Nurse Specialist

The primary goal of a CNS is to identify gaps in the delivery of healthcare services. They do so by designing and implementing change and assessing and evaluating interventions. Clinical nurse specializations are delineated by particular populations, such as pediatrics, neonatal or gerontology; settings, such as the emergency room; diseases, such as oncology; or a type of care, such as rehabilitation and pain management. Areas of subspecialty include nurse education, clinical lipidology, primary, acute, cardiology, and palliative care, among others.

Clinical Hour Requirements for CNS Programs

Clinical hours are a substantial part of the learning experience in advanced degree programs in CNS. For both master’s and doctoral programs, a minimum of 500 supervised clinical hours in the candidate’s area of specialization is required. Depending on the program and the state in which a participant lives, clinical hours may be completed under the supervision of an approved mentor in one’s local community. Some programs, however, require students to complete clinical hours in the state in which the degree program is administered.

Our graduate programs are designed for working nurses. You will complete courses online in an asynchronous format. Clinical hours in the program are focused on acquiring the CNS competencies appropriate for the population, involving wellness through acute care. You will need to have a foundation of 1-2 years recent acute care practice, with the specialty population, in order to support role development into advanced practice across the continuum of health care services. You must complete a minimum of 500 hours in a clinical setting under the supervision of qualified preceptors.

Your Degree Plan includes courses needed to complete your program. To obtain your degree, you will be required to demonstrate your skills and knowledge by completing the assessment(s) for each course. In general, there are two types of assessments: performance assessments and objective assessments. Performance assessments contain, in most cases, multiple scored tasks such as projects, essays, and research papers. Objective assessments include multiple-choice items, multiple-selection items, matching, short answer, drag-and-drop, and point-and-click item types, as well as case study and video-based items. and videobased items.

A learning resource can be an e-textbook, online module, study guide, simulation, virtual lab, tutorial, or a combination of these. The cost of most learning resources are included in your tuition and Learning Resource Fee. They can be accessed or enrolled for through your courses. Some degree-specific resources are not covered by your tuition, and you will need to cover those costs separately. AIU also provides a robust library to help you obtain additional learning resources, as needed.

Standard Path for Master of Science in clinical nurse specialist (BSN to MSN)

Satisfactory Academic Progress

We measure your progress based on the courses you are able to pass, not on your accumulation of credit hours or course grades. Every time you pass a course, you are demonstrating that you have mastered skills and knowledge in your degree program. For comparison to traditional grading systems, passing a course means you have demonstrated competency equivalent to a “B” grade or better.

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Standard Path for Master in Clinical Nurse Specialist

Context of Healthcare for Advanced Practice Nursing First semester first year 3
Statistical literacy and reasoning in Nursing Research First semester first year 3
Clinical Judgement in Advanced Acute Care Nursing I First semester first year 3
Advanced Health Assessment and Measurement First semester first year 3
Physiological/Pathophysiological Basis for Advanced Nursing Practice I First year summer semester 3
Clinical pharmacology First year summer semester 3
Role Practicum I First year summer semester 3
Applications of Research to Practice Second year first semester 3
Clinical Judgement in Acute Care Nursing II Second year first semester 3
Program development and evaluation in Heath care Second year first semester 3
Role Practicum II Second year first semester 3
Philosophical, Theoretical and Ethics Basis for Nursing Second year second semester 3
Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Second year second semester 3
Human and Family Development through Lifespan Second year second semester 3
Role Practicum III Second year second semester 3
Teaching Methods
Teaching strategies are matched to student learning styles. It reflects ongoing formative and summative assessment driven by continuous improvement. Teachers will focus on learners and provide environments that facilitate student learning where desired learner outcomes (cognitive, affective and psychomotor) are archived.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate competence in the integration of nursing and the related sciences required to analyze, design, implement, and evaluate aggregate outcomes of nursing care in diverse populations. (Essentials I, II )
  • Apply leadership skills and decision making in the provision of quality and safe care delivery to individuals, populations, or communities across healthcare delivery systems. (Essentials III, VIII)
  • Analyze information and systems related to continuous quality initiatives that promotes evidence-based practice and improved healthcare outcomes. (Essentials III, V, VIII)
  • Apply research outcomes in the practice setting, resolve practice outcomes across healthcare environments and communicate results intended to advance clinical practice. (Essentials I, IV)
  • Demonstrate competence in the application and determination of appropriate health care informatics and emergent technologies designed to improve health care outcomes. (Essentials V)
  • Advocate for policies that lead to improved health outcomes for populations and improvement of the quality of the healthcare system. (Essentials III, VI, VII)
  • Demonstrate competence in the communication, collaboration, and consultation skills required to advance interprofessional teams and partnerships. (Essentials VII)
  • Advocate for culturally competent and ethical care that promotes health and improvement of health among individuals, populations, or communities. (Essentials I, VIII)
  • Be committed to personal and professional growth through continuing education and lifelong learning. (Essentials VII, IX)
  • Demonstrate competence in a chosen area of advanced practice (nurse educator or executive nurse leader) that promotes positive health care outcomes for individuals, populations, or systems. (Essentials I, VIII, IX)

Admission Requirements For Master in Clinical Nurse Specialist:

  • Applicants must have a Bachelor's degree in nursing or higher.
  • Applicants must have recommendation letters from their previous institutions.
  • He/she needs to submit previous transcripts or mark sheets with personal statements & other required documents.
  • The candidate demonstrates his/her proficiency in English.
  • Some candidates will be asked to attend an interview.
Degrees outside of the United States

If the Baccalaureate degree was completed outside of the United States:

  • Official academic records and diploma/certificate must be sent from the institution attended.
  • If official records are not in English, certified English translations of all documents must also be submitted. Translations must be word-for-word (i.e. literal) translations
  • English Proficiency must be established by exam
  • TOEFL minimum scores: 550 paper, 80 internet, 213 computer
  • IELTS minimum score 6.5
  • Pearson Test of English Academic minimum score 53

Grade Point Average (GPA) chart

93% - 100% A 4.0
90% - 92% A+ 3.7
87% - 89% B+ 3.3
83% - 86% B 3.0
80% - 82% B- 2.7
77% - 79% C+ 2.3
73% - 76% C 2.0
70% - 72% C- 1.7
67% - 69% D+ 1.3
63% - 66% D 1.0
60% - 62% D- 0.7
0% - 59% F 0
AIU is using 4.0 GPA scale (referred to above table for more explanation)

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