Graduate Nursing Program

Graduate education enables professional nurses to realize their creative leadership potential and provides opportunities for collaborative functioning with health professionals and others in effecting change in nursing practice and health care. Specialization occurs on the graduate level, which provides for in-depth knowledge and experience in specific clinical and functional areas. Advanced knowledge provides the foundation for effective leadership in nursing. Scientific inquiry is an integral part of graduate education in nursing. Such inquiry provides the basis for acquisition of increased competencies in utilization of research and increased knowledge base in the analysis and synthesis of theories related to the practice of nursing. Graduate education provides the foundation for doctoral study in nursing.

Program Description

The nursing faculty believes that advanced practice nurses are expert clinicians with master's degree educational preparation. These practitioners are prepared to function as providers and organizers of the health care delivery process as well as in faculty positions in nursing education or in mid-level administration positions. The primary role of the advanced practice nurse is the clinical role; case management processes and educational theories and methods are used to enhance the practitioner's expert base of advanced practice clinical skills and knowledge.

Master's-prepared nurses directly assess, make clinical decisions, and manage health problems and health promotion needs of individuals, families, and communities. In addition, their jobs often require them to teach and supervise professional and non-professional staff, oversee quality assurance, utilize clinical research, and implement and evaluate programs to promote health. The master's program prepares advanced practice nurses by blending graduate core courses with the clinical and functional foci necessary to prepare flexible providers who can respond to the comprehensive needs of clients in the 21st century.

Program Goals

The graduate nursing program at Misericordia University is designed to:

  1. provide clinically prepared nurse educators, practitioners, and administrators for leadership positions in nursing education and the health care delivery system;
  2. prepare graduates to use the research process to improve nursing practice, nursing education, and contribute to nursing's body of knowledge;
  3. prepare graduates to initiate innovative, creative approaches to the emerging needs and demands of society related to the health care delivery system; and
  4. provide an educational base for graduates to pursue further education and professional development.