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Master’s Program (M.S.N.)

Aims and Assumptions

The master’s curriculum is designed to offer students an opportunity to become prepared as practitioners in selected specialties and in evidence-based research so that they may assume roles as clinician-scholars. Nurses in advanced practice are professionals committed to the delivery and study of high-quality clinical service: responsible, accountable, and with the authority to help shape the health care system of the future. The program of study in the School is viewed as preparation for a variety of leadership roles.

The Yale School of Nursing admits both registered nurses who have a baccalaureate degree and college graduates with no previous nursing education. The graduate nurse moves directly into a chosen area of clinical specialization. The full-time student who is a registered nurse is expected to complete the requirements for the degree in two academic years. Scheduled part-time study is also available. The Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing (GEPN) for the college graduate who is not a nurse requires two terms and one summer session in addition to the two-year specialization sequence. Full-time study is required for GEPN students throughout their program of study. The curriculum places emphasis upon clinical competence and nursing scholarship. Each student is educated to function in an expanded role in the specialty area of his or her choice. Employers recognize the superior preparation Yale School of Nursing graduates receive and actively seek to recruit them.

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Requirements for the Degree

The degree of Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.) is conferred upon students who have satisfactorily completed the chosen course of graduate study at Yale and have met the other conditions prescribed by the School of Nursing. To be eligible for the degree, students in the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing must successfully complete a minimum of 80.8 credit hours* and have passed the National Council Licensure Examination—Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN), which is taken by the end of the first specialty year. Students who are registered nurses satisfactorily complete a program of study that includes a minimum of 40 credit hours to be eligible for the degree.

Transfer credits are not accepted; however, selected courses may be waived based on review and approval by faculty. All master’s students in the Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner specialties are required to build and complete an electronic portfolio that is representative of their clinical and course work.

*One hour of credit per term is given for each hour of classroom work per week; one hour of credit per term is given for three hours of clinical work per week.

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General Enrollment Information

New students are enrolled in the master’s program only once per year (in September). Fall and spring terms are sixteen weeks in length, and the summer term is eleven weeks long. All students are required to maintain active Connecticut R.N. licensure and CPR certification for the medical professional while enrolled in the School of Nursing (GEPN students are to obtain their Connecticut R.N. license before the start of their second specialty year). Students in the Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership (NMPL) program are to maintain an active R.N. license in the state of their residence while enrolled in the program. Full-time study is required for students in the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing and is offered in all specialties. R.N.s have the option of full- or part-time study. The course schedule for part-time study is predetermined and will be either three or four years depending upon the specialty. General descriptions of the part-time study schedule can be obtained from the School’s Web site. Conversion from part-time to full-time study or the reverse is not normally permitted.

Nonmatriculated part-time study is available with the course instructor’s permission. A nonmatriculated student is limited to three courses per term. Students are permitted to apply up to six courses toward a degree program or a post-master’s certificate at the discretion of the specialty director and assistant dean of academic affairs.

All potential R.N. candidates whose highest degree in nursing is an associate’s degree and who also hold a B.S. degree in another field will be required to take a community health course in order to be enrolled into the Yale School of Nursing’s master’s degree program. An e-learn course that meets the objectives for N513c, Community Health Nursing and Public Health, is acceptable. In addition to providing proof of community health content, the applicant will have to complete a community health-related project that can be part of course work prior to graduation. The nature and extent of this project will be co-determined with the respective specialty director. Contact the Office of Student Affairs for more information.

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Admission Requirements and Application Procedures for the Master’s Program

The minimum requirement for admission to the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing (GEPN) is a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university. No specific major is required, but collegiate courses in human anatomy, human physiology, statistics, and biophysical sciences are strongly recommended.

Admissions requirements for registered nurses include a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university and graduation from a school of nursing (approved by the licensing board of the state in which it is located). A course in statistics and research methods is recommended, but not required. Additionally, at least one year of professional nursing experience is highly recommended. Applicants must be licensed to practice nursing in at least one U.S. state. If the applicant is a new graduate, steps to obtain a Connecticut R.N. license must be in process at the time the applicant enters the program and must be completed no later than November 1.

The following application materials are required:

  • 1. Online application form
  • 2. Nonrefundable application fee ($100)
  • 3. Résumé/curriculum vitae
  • 4. Personal statement/essay
  • 5. One official transcript from each college or university attended (Note: Applicants with an international degree transcript must submit a course-by-course evaluation conducted by a credentialing agency such as World Education Services [www.wes.org] or Educational Credential Evaluators [www.ece.org]. In addition, a certified English translation must accompany all non-English transcripts.)
  • 6. Three letters of recommendation (academic or professional)
  • 7. Graduate Record Examination-General Test (GRE) (see below for additional information)
  • 8. TOEFL or IETLS for applicants whose native/primary language is not English (see below for additional information)

Application information is available online at https://apply.nursing.yale.edu/apply. Program information can be obtained by visiting http://nursing.yale.edu/admissions; by writing to the Office of Admissions, Yale School of Nursing, Yale University West Campus, PO Box 27399, West Haven CT 06516-7399; or by calling 203.737.1793.

The deadline for GEPN applicants is November 1. All application materials must be received by the YSN Office of Admissions by this date. Applications submitted after November 1 will not be considered for admission in the upcoming fall term.

The deadline for R.N. applicants is February 1. All application materials must be received by the YSN Office of Admissions by this date. Applications submitted after February 1 will not be considered for admission in the upcoming fall term. The application procedure and deadlines are the same for both part-time and full-time study.

Applications will be reviewed only after all application materials, including the GRE, are received by the above deadlines. Incomplete applications are not forwarded to the Admissions Committee for consideration. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all materials are received by the Office of Admissions in a timely manner. Materials must be received by November 1 for GEPNs and February 1 for R.N.s.

Following the initial review of written credentials, qualified applicants are asked to come to the School for an interview. When distance presents a hardship, candidates are able to arrange a telephone interview. GEPN interviews are conducted at the end of January. Interviews for R.N.s are held during February and March.

Admission decisions are based upon a number of variables, which include evidence of motivation, academic ability, personal understanding of and propensity for advanced practice nursing, letters of recommendation, and potential for continued constructive use of the professional education. For clinical placement purposes, all accepted applicants will be required to undergo a background check before enrolling in the fall.

Reapplication Policy

Applicants to the Yale School of Nursing who have applied three times to the same program without an offer of admission will not be allowed to apply to that program again.

Graduate Record Examination

All applicants are required to take the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Test scores must be submitted electronically by the Educational Testing Service. The YSN GRE code is 3998. Scores that are more than five years old are not acceptable. Additionally, the GRE requirement cannot be waived based on prior GPA or academic achievement. However, individuals with an advanced degree requiring a thesis/dissertation or scholarly published articles may petition to have the requirement waived. If the petition is denied, the applicant is responsible for having the GRE scores sent to the School before the application deadline. Please contact the Office of Admissions for additional details.

GEPN applicants must take the GRE prior to the November 1 application deadline. R.N. applicants must take the GRE prior to the February 1 application deadline. In most cases, computer-based testing has replaced the paper format and can be scheduled year-round in the United States. International students must plan carefully, as the GRE may only be offered once a year in a specific country. It takes approximately 7–10 business days from the date of a computerized administration for the official transcript of GRE scores to reach the School. Paper-based GRE results may take two months to reach the School. Prompt arrangements for taking this examination should be made in order to meet the application deadlines for receipt of scores.

Examinations are scheduled at specific times in centers located throughout the United States and many other countries. Information about the examination may be obtained by visiting www.ets.org/gre; by contacting Graduate Record Examinations, Educational Testing Service, PO Box 6000, Princeton NJ 08541-6000; or by telephoning 609.771.7670.

English as a Foreign Language

Applicants whose native/primary language is other than English must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the academic version of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) as one of the admission requirements. This requirement cannot be waived based on college or university attendance in the United States or other English-speaking country. The following scores are required for admission to the M.S.N. programs:

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) minimum score: 100/120 total, with minimum section scores of Reading, 22/30; Listening, 22/30; Writing, 22/30; and Speaking, 24/30.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) minimum score: Band 7.0/9.0 total, with no section score below Band 6.5/9.0.

Arrangements to take the TOEFL must be made online at www.ets.org/toefl.

Arrangements to take the academic IELTS must be made online at www.ielts.org.

It typically takes a month from the date of administration for the official transcript of scores to reach the School. Prompt arrangements for taking an English examination should be made in order to meet the appropriate application deadline for receipt of scores.

Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) Examination

Prior to enrolling in the School, graduates of foreign schools of nursing must pass the CGFNS Qualifying Exam as well as the NCLEX-RN examination in order to become a registered nurse (R.N.) in the United States. Several states, however, do not require successful completion of the CGFNS Qualifying Exam in order to take the NCLEX-RN. Information on the CGFNS Qualifying Exam can be obtained from the United States Embassy, the nurses’ association in the foreign country of residence, or www.cgfns.org. Information on the NCLEX-RN examination is available online at https://www.ncsbn.org/nclex.htm.

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Core Performance Standards for Admission and Progression

To complete most of the nursing programs at the Yale School of Nursing, a student must complete a clinical/practicum component that involves caring for actual patients. By accepting admission and enrolling in the School of Nursing, the student certifies that she/he has read and understands the essential eligibility requirements of the program.

Essential eligibility requirements for participation and completion by students in the nursing program include the following core performance standards:

Intellectual Critical thinking ability sufficient for clinical and academic judgment.

Interpersonal Interpersonal ability sufficient to appropriately interact with individuals, families, and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural, and intellectual backgrounds.

Communication Communication abilities sufficient for professional interaction with others in oral, written, and computer-assisted forms.

Mobility Physical abilities sufficient to move from room to room and maneuver in small spaces.

Motor Skills Gross and fine motor abilities sufficient to provide therapeutic nursing interventions that are safe and effective and that maintain safety and security standards.

Attendance The ability to get to required classes and clinical assignments, be on time, and complete all required course work and clinical shifts.

Hearing Auditory ability sufficient to monitor, assess, and respond to health needs.

Visual Visual ability sufficient to monitor, assess, and respond to health needs.

Tactile Tactile ability sufficient to monitor, assess, and respond to health needs.

Judgment Mental and physical ability to demonstrate good judgment in decision making, in order to maintain safety and security of patients and to behave appropriately with patients, staff, students, and supervisors.

YSN does not discriminate on the basis of disability. If reasonable accommodations will allow an otherwise qualified student with a disability to meet the essential eligibility requirements for participation in its nursing programs, the School will assist the student in making the reasonable accommodations. Students who would like to receive accommodations on the basis of disability must self-identify, must provide documentation of the disability, and must request accommodation. Please refer to the Yale University Resource Office on Disabilities’ Web site at www.yale.edu/rod.

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Personal Conduct Policy

The Yale School of Nursing is an academic and professional community committed to the education of students and socialization of professionals for a variety of clinical and scholarly roles. The ultimate goal of the School is to contribute to the better health care of people. This goal requires that all members of the YSN community contribute to the creation of a work and learning environment that maintains the highest standards of academic integrity, values honesty and free expression, and respects individual differences and viewpoints. All members of the community are expected to abide by the regulations of the University as well as to obey local, state, and federal laws. Students in the School of Nursing are expected to adhere to high standards of behavior in the following areas, and failure to do so will lead to appropriate disciplinary action.

  • 1. Academic Integrity It is expected that students’ work represents their own efforts. Behaviors such as cheating on exams or other forms of tests, the falsification or fabrication of data, and plagiarism are prohibited. Students witnessing cheating are expected to contact the appropriate faculty member.
  • 2. Personal Integrity It is expected that students honestly represent their credentials, abilities, and situation. Behaviors such as altering transcripts or work history or misrepresenting one’s financial situation in order to obtain financial aid are prohibited.
  • 3. Professional Integrity It is expected that students behave in clinical settings in a way that is consistent with the goal of providing optimal patient care. Students’ interactions with clients and other professionals in these settings should respect differences, avoid stereotyping, and reflect nursing’s ultimate commitment to caring.
  • 4. Respect for Person and Property It is expected that students respect individual differences, welcome diverse viewpoints, and avoid stereotyping. In addition, it is the students’ responsibility to contribute to the maintenance of the physical environment of the School and the University. Behaviors such as harassment, disruption of class, misuse of materials or facilities of the University library, and unauthorized use of services, equipment, or facilities are prohibited. Students are also expected to respect their classmates and professors by adhering to general classroom decorum (e.g., punctuality, refraining from cell phone usage, addressing faculty and students in a respectful tone). The possession or use, on or around campus, of explosives, incendiary materials, or weapons (including guns, ammunition, air rifles, paintball and pellet guns, Tasers, and knives) is absolutely prohibited.

Failure to adhere to the above principles will be referred to the YSN Committee on Discipline, and students who have violated the above principles will be subject to one or more of the following actions: counseling, reprimand, probation, suspension, dismissal, fine, or restriction. This policy allows for the consideration of infractions on a case-by-case basis. Final actions will depend on the seriousness of the infraction and the circumstances surrounding the case.

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Student Grievances

The Yale School of Nursing has a policy and procedure that governs any case in which a student has a complaint, including but not limited to a complaint of discrimination on the basis of race, sex, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, or handicap, against a member of the faculty or administration of the complainant’s School. Since an instructor’s evaluation of the quality of a student’s work is final, this procedure does not apply in any dispute about a grade assigned to a student by a member of the faculty, unless it is alleged that the determination of the grade resulted from discrimination as described above or failure to follow published policies or procedures. Similarly, this procedure does not apply to any matter inherent in the academic freedom of an instructor, such as, for example, in regard to the syllabus or contents of a course of instruction. It is also not a procedure that may be used when there is a complaint about the quality of a course or the quality of instruction in a course; such concerns may be addressed directly to the department in question. The policy and procedure can be found on the School’s Student Policies Web page (http://nursing.yale.edu/policiesindex) under Policy No. 4, Dean’s Procedure for Student Complaints.

Complaints of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment and sexual assault, may be brought to a Title IX Coordinator or to the University-Wide Committee on Sexual Misconduct (for inquiries or for informal or formal resolution). For more information on the University-Wide Committee on Sexual Misconduct, see Resources on Sexual Misconduct in the chapter Yale University Resources and Services. The University-Wide Procedure for Complaints of Sexual Misconduct can be found at http://provost.yale.edu/uwc.

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Leave of Absence and Withdrawal

It is to the School’s advantage to have enrolled students complete the course of study. When extenuating circumstances require a student to be absent, all reasonable efforts will be made to accommodate the situation and enable the individual to meet the requirements for the degree.

It is understood that this policy and these procedures apply to situations in which the student will be absent from the School for the remainder of a term or longer.

Leave of Absence

A leave of absence is permission granted to a student to interrupt the program of study for a specified time. Since the purpose of a leave is to relieve a student of educational obligations, students will not normally be allowed to enroll in or audit courses during the period of leave, nor will they be allowed to continue or initiate work on the scholarly inquiry praxis.

A student on leave of absence is not eligible for the use of any University facilities normally available to enrolled students.

A student on leave of absence is not eligible for financial aid, including loans; and in most cases, student loans are not deferred during periods of nonenrollment.

International students who apply for a leave of absence must consult with the Office of International Students and Scholars regarding their visa status.

Granting of a Leave of Absence

Students must complete the appropriate form, available on the School’s Web site, before a request can be considered. The request for a leave of absence must be forwarded by the program chair to the assistant dean for student affairs after consultation with the student. All leaves must be approved by the dean’s office as prerequisite for continued coverage by Yale Health. Approval of leave will be noted by letter to the student, with a copy to the program chair, the assistant dean for student affairs, and the financial aid officer.

A leave of absence will be granted only for students in good standing, or in the case of medical leave, for students whose work was satisfactory prior to the onset of illness. There must be sufficient evidence that circumstances, medical or otherwise, exist that make it impossible or difficult for the student to continue with a program of study; and there must be evidence that once these circumstances are resolved, the student would be able and committed to continuing the program of study. Normally, this determination will be made by the program chair after an interview with the student and consultation with the assistant dean for student affairs, and review of the clinician’s recommendation.

A leave of absence is granted for a fixed and limited term, which will ordinarily be two terms or less. The specific length of the leave is determined by the assistant dean for student affairs, upon receipt of a recommendation from the program chair, with appropriate consultation with the student.

When a leave is granted, appropriate materials will be filed in the student’s folder regarding date and length of leave. The assistant dean for student affairs will notify Student Financial Services, Yale Health, and other offices as deemed necessary. They will follow the same procedure if the leave is extended and/or ended by the student’s return or termination of her/his association with the School.

If a student is enrolled in Yale Health before the leave is granted, the student is automatically covered by Yale Health for any term for which tuition has been paid. A student on leave of absence may continue to be enrolled in Yale Health by purchasing coverage through the Student Affiliate Coverage plan within thirty days from the official start date of the leave.

Medical Leave of Absence

A student who must interrupt study temporarily because of illness or injury may be granted a medical leave of absence with the approval of the appropriate assistant dean, on the written recommendation of a clinician on the staff of Yale Health and of the student’s department.

The School reserves the right to place a student on a medical leave of absence when, on the recommendation of the director of Yale Health or the chief of the Department of Mental Health and Counseling, the dean determines that the student is a danger to self or others because of a serious medical problem.

Before re-registering, a student on medical leave must secure written permission to return from a clinician on the staff of Yale Health. The determination will be based on the School’s judgment of whether the student is able to fully engage in the program of study.

Return after Leave

A student on leave of absence has the right to return to the School to complete the requirements for the degree at the date the leave expires, provided that: (1) the student notified the School, in writing, by the date specified in the original letter granting the leave, of her or his intention to return; (2) the student has complied with any written conditions of the leave by the time the leave has expired; and (3) in the case of a medical leave, a medical statement has been provided in accordance with the above terms, and the program chair and assistant dean for student affairs have determined that the student is eligible to return. A student who, for any reason, does not enroll at the termination of the leave shall be determined to have terminated his/her association with the School, and will be ineligible to return.

Withdrawal

Withdrawal is termination of the student’s association with the School. It may or may not be renegotiated, depending on the circumstances of withdrawal.

Students must complete the appropriate form, available on the School’s Web site, before a request for withdrawal can be considered.

Students may withdraw on their own initiative, or upon recommendation of faculty, and may be eligible or ineligible to return. Students who were in good standing at the time of withdrawal may, upon recommendation of the program chair, be considered eligible to return. Students not in good standing may be determined to be ineligible to return upon the program chair’s recommendation.

The student who is eligible to return must petition the School for readmission. A deadline will be determined in advance for receipt of the letter of petition. A personal interview with the program chair and the assistant dean for student affairs is normally required. The School may determine that intervening curriculum developments or enrollment increases make it impossible to accommodate a student’s desire to return from withdrawal. Further, curriculum revision during the student’s absence may alter course work required for completion of degree requirements.

Notification of withdrawal will be made to the assistant dean for student affairs, who will in turn notify the bursar and Yale Health. Tuition charges will be adjusted as specified in Refund and Rebate, in the chapter General Information.

Transcripts will note “Withdrawn—eligible to return” or “Withdrawn—ineligible to return.”

Requirements for Return

All students in clinical programs who are away from YSN for more than two consecutive terms are required to pass a reentry assessment to demonstrate clinical safety and proficiency, as well as the core performance standards for admission and progression detailed earlier in this chapter. The assessment will normally consist of a written exam, written cases, and demonstration of a comprehensive history and physical exam with relevant SOAP note documentation. The faculty have the option of using simulation as a method of retesting proficiencies and competencies. The assessment will include content from the student’s clinical specialty area encompassing relevant didactic and clinical courses completed prior to the leave of absence. Reentry into the program is contingent upon successful achievement (74 percent grade or higher) on each of the three components of the reentry assessment. The reentry assessment may be taken one time only; a student who does not pass the reentry assessment will be withdrawn from the program.

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U.S. Military Leave Readmissions Policy

Students who wish or need to interrupt their studies to perform U.S. military service are subject to a separate U.S. military leave readmissions policy. In the event a student withdraws or takes a leave of absence from YSN to serve in the U.S. military, the student will be entitled to guaranteed readmission under the following conditions:

  • 1. The student must have served in the U.S. Armed Forces for a period of more than thirty consecutive days;
  • 2. The student must give advance written or verbal notice of such service to the assistant dean for student affairs. In providing the advance notice the student does not need to indicate whether he or she intends to return. This advance notice need not come directly from the student, but rather, can be made by an appropriate officer of the U.S. Armed Forces or official of the U.S. Department of Defense. Notice is not required if precluded by military necessity. In all cases, this notice requirement can be fulfilled at the time the student seeks readmission, by submitting an attestation that the student performed the service.
  • 3. The student must not be away from the School to perform U.S. military service for a period exceeding five years (this includes all previous absences to perform U.S. military service but does not include any initial period of obligated service). If a student’s time away from the School to perform U.S. military service exceeds five years because the student is unable to obtain release orders through no fault of the student or the student was ordered to or retained on active duty, the student should contact the assistant dean for student affairs to determine if the student remains eligible for guaranteed readmission.
  • 4. The student must notify YSN within three years of the end of the U.S. military service of his or her intention to return. However, a student who is hospitalized or recovering from an illness or injury incurred in or aggravated during the U.S. military service has up until two years after recovering from the illness or injury to notify YSN of his or her intent to return; and
  • 5. The student cannot have received a dishonorable or bad conduct discharge or have been sentenced in a court-martial.

A student who meets all of these conditions will be readmitted for the next term, unless the student requests a later date of readmission. Any student who fails to meet one of these requirements may still be readmitted under the general readmission policy but is not guaranteed readmission.

Upon returning to YSN, the student will resume his or her education without repeating completed course work for courses interrupted by U.S. military service. The student will have the same enrolled status last held and with the same academic standing. For the first academic year in which the student returns, the student will be charged the tuition and fees that would have been assessed for the academic year in which the student left the institution. YSN may charge up to the amount of tuition and fees other students are assessed, however, if veteran’s education benefits will cover the difference between the amounts currently charged other students and the amount charged for the academic year in which the student left.

All students in clinical programs who are away from YSN for more than two consecutive terms are required to pass a re-entry assessment to demonstrate clinical safety and proficiency. This assessment will normally consist of a written exam, written cases, and demonstration of a comprehensive history and physical exam with relevant SOAP note documentation. The assessment will include content from the student’s clinical specialty area encompassing relevant didactic and clinical courses completed prior to the leave of absence. In the case of a student who is not prepared to resume his or her studies with the same academic status at the same point at which the student left or who will not be able to complete the program of study, YSN will undertake reasonable efforts to help the student become prepared. If after reasonable efforts, YSN determines that the student remains unprepared or will be unable to complete the program or after YSN determines that there are no reasonable efforts it can take, YSN may deny the student readmission.

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Grading System

The grading system is Honors, High Pass, Pass, and Fail. The School employs a standard set of definitions for each grade. Criteria for each grade are the prerogative of individual faculty; however, the School uses a standard numerical system for converting scored tests and assignments to the grading system: Honors, 92–100; High Pass, 83–91; Pass, 74–82; Fail, 73 and below. Satisfactory progress is defined as a grade of Pass or higher in all required courses. Satisfactory completion of all required courses in a given term is prerequisite for progression in the program of study. More information on satisfactory progress can be found on the School’s Student Policies Web page under Policy No. 23, Students in Academic Difficulty. Students who withdraw or are withdrawn for unsatisfactory grades or progress may be considered eligible to return only upon recommendation of the faculty, the program chair, and the associate dean for academic affairs. At the discretion of the faculty, a challenge or waiver may be available for students who wish to demonstrate competence or mastery of the particular subject matter offered in required courses, or modules of required courses. It is understood that students who challenge or waive a particular module or course are expected to replace it with another learning opportunity. Tuition will not be reduced. In the final term, course work must be completed and grades reported one week prior to Commencement for students to qualify for the degree. The scholarly inquiry praxis must be submitted by noon of a set day prior to Commencement for a student to receive the degree.

The School of Nursing has policies and procedures that govern student complaints and dismissal for unsatisfactory conduct. The School of Nursing reserves the right to withhold the degree or to request the withdrawal of any student for any reason deemed advisable by the faculty of the School.

Student records are kept in the Student Affairs Office and are available to an enrolled student upon request.

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Curriculum

The master’s curriculum is organized by clinical specialty. The first year of the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing is described separately.

All course descriptions are listed in numerical order in the chapter Course Listings. Required courses for each specialty are listed in the description of each specialty. The listings describe schedules for full-time study. The course plan for scheduled part-time study may be obtained from the Student Affairs Office. The School reserves the right to offer course substitutions and to amend the overall curriculum.

Fall-term courses are noted by “a” following the course number, spring-term courses by “b,” and summer-term courses by “c.” Yearlong courses have no letter designation.

Elective courses: Students may elect School of Nursing courses offered by specialties other than the one in which they are enrolled or by other schools or departments within Yale University, with the permission of the course instructor and their specialty coordinator. For nonspecialty-affiliated School of Nursing electives, see the chapter School of Nursing Electives for Matriculated and Nonmatriculated Students.

Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing

The Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing (GEPN) is a three-year full-time course of study that combines preparation in basic nursing with advanced preparation in an evidence-based clinical specialty. The first year of the program of study is designed to provide a solid foundation in basic nursing theory, nursing process, biological science, nutrition, and pharmacology. This content is reinforced by clinical experience in medical-surgical, pediatric, psychiatric–mental health, maternal-newborn, and community health nursing settings. The curriculum also includes a course that addresses current issues in nursing and health care and health assessment.

Upon completion of the prespecialty year, the student moves into a clinical specialty and continues with the study of relevant nursing theory, practice, and research. Students are admitted into a designated specialty when accepted into the program. Any change in the choice of specialty is made only with the approval of the specialty coordinators and the associate dean for academic affairs.

The Certificate in Nursing is awarded upon successful completion of all required courses and experiences in the prespecialty year, but is not intended as an exit point. The Certificate in Nursing satisfies Connecticut General Statutes requirements, allowing the student to become eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX–RN). Students are required to pass the NCLEX–RN by November 1 of the first specialty year. The Certificate in Nursing and a license to practice nursing in Connecticut are two prerequisites for enrollment in the second term of the first specialty year.

Courses may be elected from those offered by the School of Nursing, the Graduate School, and other professional schools within the University.

The First Year of the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing

Fall Term 503, 507, 509, 511a, 516a, 517a

Spring and Summer Terms 501, 503, 504b or c, 507, 509, 513c, 514b or c, 515b or c, 518b or c, 519b or c, 520b, 521b

Clinical Specialties

The master’s program is designed to prepare effective advanced practice registered nurses and nurse scholars capable of improving practice through sound clinical judgment and scholarly inquiry. In general, the first year in each clinical specialty includes basic clinical skill development, assessment and therapies, theories and concepts in nursing practice, and an introduction to research. The final year provides advanced clinical management skills, role development, integration of practice and theory, concepts of leadership, consultation, teaching, change, and policy. Students have the opportunity to take electives across specialties within the School and at other schools in the University.

The specialties offered in the master’s program are (1) Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner; (2) Family Nurse Practitioner; (3) Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner; (4) Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership; (5) Pediatric Nurse Practitioner; and (6) Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Each student is assigned a faculty adviser who is a clinical expert in the student’s chosen field of specialization. Within the specialty area, emphasis is placed upon the development of clinical judgment. In addition to clinical experience, conferences with individual faculty advisers, group conferences with specialty faculty members, and courses presenting scientific data and content relevant to the specialty area provide opportunity for in-depth study.

The following is a list of core courses for all clinical specialties of the master’s program except Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership. In addition to core courses, each specialty requires specific didactic and clinical courses, which are listed in the plans of study for each specialty description. Course descriptions can be found in the chapter Courses.

Year one

  • 525a, Nursing Research as a Basis for Evidence-Based Practice
  • 529a, Statistics for Clinical Nursing Research
  • 533a, Advanced Pathophysiology
  • 554a, Advanced Health Assessment across the Life Span
  • 895b, Clinical Pharmacology

Year two

  • 717a, The Contexts of Care

The required research and statistics courses in the first year of specialization (525a, 529a) provide a foundation for evidence-based clinical practice. These courses expand students’ critical thinking abilities and knowledge by providing an introduction to the research methodologies and statistical analyses essential to identifying, providing, reviewing, and evaluating evidence-based advanced nursing care to diverse populations within a variety of settings. Students also develop the ability to select and evaluate appropriate techniques of measurement, and statistical techniques utilizing computer analysis.

All master’s students (with the exception of those in the Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership specialty) are required to develop, during their course of study, a master’s portfolio. The portfolio is regularly reviewed by the student’s academic adviser, who then approves the final portfolio prior to Commencement. A portfolio is a presentation (either written or electronic) of elements of learning that have occurred throughout the student’s professional education. A portfolio enables students to prepare for the increasingly complex challenges of licensure, certification, privileging, and job placement upon graduation. The content of the master’s portfolio, which may vary according to the clinical specialty and individual student, should include the following: a curriculum vitae, list of clinical sites and preceptors, clinical case and time logs (as generated via the Typhon Group Nurse Practitioner Student Tracking System), presentations, publications, and any honors the student may have received. Evidence of clinical scholarly writing is required in the master’s portfolio. Specifically, students must include either one of the following: a set of three written documents from course work activities including (a) a research critique, (b) a case study, and (c) an evidence-based paper on a clinical topic; or a written scholarly praxis suitable for publication, or a master’s thesis. Those students choosing the second option are expected to work closely with a faculty member in the development of their praxis or thesis.

During the final year, the student is expected to expand and consolidate knowledge and skill in the specialty and to assume increasingly independent responsibility for the management of patients and/or systems. In addition to the required curriculum, elective courses are available in the School of Nursing, the Graduate School, and other professional schools within the University that provide theoretical preparation in areas of education and administration, research, advanced clinical work, or further study in related fields. The student prepares a program of study in consultation with a faculty adviser.

The curriculum of clinical specialties is intended to prepare students to apply for certification through credentialing agencies. Please note that there is no program in the nation that can meet each state’s individual certification requirements. The School recommends that students review all state requirements and consult their academic adviser to plan how they can meet those requirements while enrolled in the School.

Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Specialty

The Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (ACNP) specialty prepares acute care nurse practitioners to assess and manage collaboratively the needs of patients who are acutely and critically ill across the full continuum of adult acute care services. The core body of knowledge provided in the specialty is derived from the full spectrum of high-acuity patient care needs. The population focus is adult/gerontology. The ACNP curriculum is intended to prepare students to apply for the Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

In the first year of study, the focus is on history taking, physical assessment, differential diagnosis, diagnostic testing, pathophysiology, pharmacology, and management of patients. Courses in assessing the acutely ill individual, diagnostic reasoning, nursing theory, research, and statistics are also featured in the first year. Clinical conferences focus on the diagnosis and management of problems seen in acutely ill patients, as well as pharmacology.

During the final year of study, emphasis is placed on the differential diagnosis and management of complex problems seen in the acutely ill patient population. Courses also include content on specialty pharmacology, health promotion, acute and chronic disease management, and the role of the nurse practitioner. Clinical placement sites expose the student to a variety of acute care settings and patient populations. Clinical conferences focus on the diagnosis and management of complex acute care problems.

Year one

  • Required core courses: 525a, 529a, 533a, 554a, 895b
  • Required clinical courses: 610a*, 612b, 810b
  • Required seminars: 607b, 609a, 611a
  • Electives

Year two

  • Required core course: 717a
  • Required clinical course: 802a/b
  • Required seminars: 807a, 817b, 819b, 897b
  • Electives
*An eight-week course.

The course plan for part-time study can be obtained from the School’s Web site. A Post-Master’s Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Certificate option is also available (see the chapter Post-Master’s Certificates).

Family Nurse Practitioner Specialty

The Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) specialty emphasizes the primary care of children, adolescents, adults, and older adults within the context of family-centered care. The FNP curriculum is intended to prepare students to apply for Family Nurse Practitioner Certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

Year one

  • Required core courses: 525a, 529a, 533a, 554a, 895b
  • Required clinical courses: 550, 556b
  • Required seminars: 557a, 557b, 633a, 635b, 641b, 643a, 643b

Year two

  • Required core course: 717a
  • Required clinical course: 756a/b
  • Required seminars: 757a, 757b, 833a/b, 897a

The course plan for part-time study can be obtained from the School’s Web site. A Post-Master’s Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate option is also available (see the chapter Post-Master’s Certificates).

Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner Specialty

The Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner (M/WHNP) curriculum is designed to prepare clinically competent midwives/women’s health nurse practitioners who provide family-centered primary health care to women. Clinical experiences with individuals and groups, incorporated throughout the two years, emphasize use of a management process for providing health care. Relevant research and concepts from midwifery, nursing, medicine, and the sciences are studied to provide a base of theory and rationale for clinical practice and primary care. Students are expected to examine their midwifery and nursing practice critically and to develop beginning skill in the use and evaluation of research methods and statistics. Leadership capabilities are emphasized.

Courses and clinical work focus on the independent management of primary care; care for women and newborns during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum periods; and family planning and gynecological care. Students learn collaborative, interdisciplinary management of the care of women and newborns with health complications. Clinical practice takes place within health care systems that provide for medical consultation, collaborative management, and referral in accord with the Standards for Nurse-Midwifery Practice promulgated by the American College of Nurse-Midwives. Elective and independent study courses offer opportunities for students to pursue individual educational and professional goals. Completion of the M/WHNP curriculum qualifies students for the national certification examination offered by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) and the Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner certification offered by the National Certification Corporation (NCC) for the obstetric, gynecologic, and neonatal nursing specialties.

The M/WHNP program of study is fully accredited by the American College of Nurse-Midwives, Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education, www.midwife.org; and by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, www.aacn.nche.edu/ccne-accreditation.

Year one

  • Required core courses: 525a, 529a, 533a, 554a, 895b
  • Required clinical/seminar courses: 557a, 557b, 580a, 580b, 581a, 581b, 582b, 583b, 897b

Year two

  • Required course: 717a
  • Required clinical/seminar courses: 780a, 780b, 781a, 782a, 783a, 784b, 785a

The course plan for part-time study can be obtained from the School’s Web site.

Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership Specialty

The School of Nursing will not be admitting students to this specialty for the 2014–2015 academic year.

The Nursing Management, Policy, and Leadership (NMPL) specialty prepares nurses for leadership positions in health care delivery and health policy that are essential for transforming health care systems and improving population health. The specialty features innovative Web-based methods combined with intensive monthly campus sessions, both of which are designed to be responsive to students’ busy personal and professional lives. The curriculum includes courses in management, policy, leadership, organizational behavior, ethics, evidence-based management, health care finance, uses of data in decision making, and patient safety. Clinical placements are tailored to students’ individual academic goals. A three-year program of study is available. The NMPL program curriculum is intended to prepare students to apply for Nursing Administration Certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Year one

  • Required courses: 563a, 569a, 573b
  • Required clinical course: 578b

Year two

  • Required courses: 525a, 561a, 565b, 577a, 877b

Year three

  • Required courses: 567a, 873a, 875a, 879b
  • Required clinical course: 878b
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Specialty

The Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP) specialty prepares graduates for expanded roles in the provision of primary care to children and adolescents. Courses focus on theories and clinical application related to health promotion, health and developmental assessment, pathophysiology, pharmacology, and management of common acute and chronic conditions in children and adolescents with a family-centered approach to care. There is an emphasis on the development of evidence-based research skills fundamental to advanced practice nursing.

Each student, throughout the two years, provides primary health care for children and adolescents in a variety of clinical settings, including community-based and private practices as well as school-based health centers. In addition, students select a specialty clinical rotation with relevance to pediatric primary care. In all clinical placements, the role of the PNP as a member of an interdisciplinary team and coordinator across systems of care within the context of family is emphasized. The PNP specialty curriculum is intended to prepare students to apply for Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Certification in primary care through the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board or the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Year one

  • Required core courses: 525a, 529a, 533a, 554a, 895b
  • Required clinical courses: 632a/b, 640b*, 826b*
  • Required seminars: 633a, 635b, 641b, 643a, 643b, 845b

Year two

  • Required core course: 717a
  • Required clinical courses: 640a*, 826a*, 830a/b, 834b**
  • Required seminars: 825a, 827b, 833a/b
*Students take either 640a or b and 826a or b. **One term of 834 must be taken during the second year, usually during the spring term. A second, elective 834 clinical rotation may be taken with faculty approval.

The course plan for part-time study can be obtained from the School’s Web site. A Post-Master’s Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Certificate option is also available (see the chapter Post-Master’s Certificates).

Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Specialty

The Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) specialty prepares graduates for advanced practice in the provision of psychiatric–mental health services to individuals across the lifespan and their family members in a variety of settings and roles. Courses focus on theories, research evidence, and clinical application related to mental health assessment and differential diagnosis, psychopathology, psychopharmacology, and psychotherapeutic modalities including individual, group,and family therapy. There is also emphasis on health promotion and risk prevention as students evaluate and monitor co-morbid illnesses and conditions occurring with primary psychiatric diagnoses.

Each student, throughout the two years, provides a wide range of services in a variety of clinical settings across the lifespan, including acute emergency psychiatric services, community mental health centers, office-based and private practice, home-based care, integrated psychiatric and primary care, substance abuse and forensic sites, and acute and long-term care facilities. In addition, the student is able to focus on a specialty population in the second term of the second year. Through application of evidence-based research skills, students evaluate systems of care, design evidence-based practice solutions, and work in collaboration with the multidisciplinary team. Upon completion of the required curriculum, students are prepared to apply for certification as a psychiatric–mental health nurse practitioner with a lifespan focus through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Year one

  • Required core courses: 525a, 529a, 554a, 895b
  • Required clinical courses: 654a or b, 656a or b, 658a or b
  • Required specialty seminars: 643a/b, 657a, 661b, 663a/b, 859b

Year two

  • Required core courses: 533a, 717a
  • Required clinical courses: 860a, 862b
  • Required specialty seminars: 851b, 855a, 865b

The course plan for part-time study can be obtained from the School’s Web site. A Post-Master’s Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate option is also available (see the chapter Post-Master’s Certificates).

Diabetes Care Concentration

The Diabetes Care concentration consists of a series of courses that focus on advanced preparation in the subspecialty of diabetes care practice and management. It is designed for students in their final year of study. Students who are enrolled in this concentration are expected to complete the designated seminars and clinical practica, as well as a scholarly praxis in an area relevant to the concentration.

The concentration is open to students in the Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner, and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner specialties. The concentration is designed to prepare specialists in these fields for practice in diabetes care and management.

All students in the concentration are required to take 768a/b, Clinical Practice in Diabetes Care and Management, which requires four hours per week of clinical practice. Additionally, students must take 769a, Advanced Concepts and Principles of Diabetes Care. A diabetes-related praxis is required. Enrollment in the concentration is limited. Students can apply for the concentration during their first specialty year by contacting the coordinator of the FNP specialty. Faculty permission is required.

Global Health Concentration

The Global Health concentration is designed to prepare students to serve global populations both internationally and domestically as clinicians, educators, scholars, and policy makers. Students are exposed to a range of global concepts through their interdisciplinary didactic courses and through their global clinical and scholarly activities.

All students in the concentration take two approved graduate-level courses in global health and complete a minimum of 60 additional clinical hours either in an international setting with YSN-approved preceptors or in a domestic site serving global populations. Scholarly work includes a praxis with a global health focus or at least one document submitted to the master’s portfolio with a global health focus.

The concentration is open to students in their final year of study in the M.S.N. program. Enrollment is limited. Students are required to complete a concentration application in their first specialty year.

Oncology Concentration

The Oncology concentration consists of didactic courses and clinical experience to provide a foundation of knowledge and skill for an advanced practice nursing role in the care of adults with cancer. Students enrolled in this concentration are expected to complete the designated seminars and clinical practicum. Opportunities for scholarly activities with faculty will be available and encouraged.

The concentration is open to students in all adult advanced practice nursing programs. Students are required to take 615b, Principles of Oncology Practice, in spring of the first year; and 803a/b, Advanced Management of Oncology Problems, and 804a/b, Clinical Practicum Oncology, in the final year. Students are required to complete a concentration application in their first specialty year.

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Joint Degrees

Joint Degree in Nursing and Divinity

In recognition of the relationship between nursing and religious studies, the Yale School of Nursing and the Yale Divinity School offer a joint-degree program in nursing and divinity. This option is especially oriented to individuals who wish to combine careers in advanced nursing practice and social ministry that might involve direct practice, planning, and policy making and religious ministry in a variety of health care systems. There are two joint-degree options between the Divinity School and the School of Nursing. The first option, a joint degree leading to the Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.) and the Master of Arts in Religion (M.A.R.), requires three years of study (four years for students in the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing [GEPN]). The second option, a joint degree leading to the M.S.N. and Master of Divinity (M.Div.), requires four years of study (five years for GEPN students) and is designed for those students who wish to prepare for the lay or ordained ministries of Christian churches. Admissions decisions are made independently by the Divinity School and the School of Nursing. Students are required to apply simultaneously to both schools. Applicants must indicate on each application form that they are applying to the joint-degree program. This joint-degree program is not open to YSN students enrolled in or applying to the Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner specialty. All applicants must meet with the associate dean or assistant dean for academic affairs and the specialty coordinator prior to applying to discuss the feasibility of the program of study.

Joint Degree in Nursing and Public Health

Recognizing the relationship between nursing and public health, the Yale School of Nursing and the Yale School of Public Health offer a joint-degree opportunity in nursing and public health. This option is especially oriented to individuals who wish to combine careers in advanced nursing practice and public health that might involve direct practice, planning, and policy making in a variety of health care systems in the public health sector. The joint-degree option requires three years of study (four years for students in the Graduate Entry Prespecialty in Nursing) and awards a Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.) and a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.). Admissions decisions are made independently by the School of Public Health and the School of Nursing. Students are required to apply simultaneously to both schools. Applicants must indicate on each application form that they are applying to the joint-degree program. This joint-degree program is not open to YSN students enrolled in or applying to the Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner specialty. All students are required to begin their first academic year at the School of Public Health.

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