Master of Science in Nursing

Course Descriptions for the Master of Science in Nursing

Core Courses for the MSN Program, both CNS and CNL:

6311 – Research I: Analysis and Interpretation of Research
Overview of qualitative and quantitative research processes and designs.  Prepares nurses to read, interpret and synthesize current knowledge on a topic relevant to evidence-based nursing practice with an emphasis on aggregate focused care and to critique methodology, research design, instrumentation and statistical techniques of research studies.

6342 – Research II: Proposal Development
Prepares students to a research study addressing health care needs of  an identified population.  Research design, measurement and sample techniques, data collection and data analysis methodologies incorporated into selection of research strategies appropriate to specific problems and the development of a research proposal.  Prerequisite:  Research I:  Analysis and Interpretation of Research.

6361 – Nursing Leadership and Health Policy
This course focuses on development of skills in the formation and implementation of health policy including strategies to design programs which reduce heath disparities.  Using a values framework, students assess leadership roles and strategies in political activism and policy development in professional organizations, communities, worksites and government.

6315-Resource Management for Nurse Leaders
This course is designed to enhance the effectiveness of clinical nurse leaders through the development of skills in fiscal management in health care organizations. The planning, control, and management of an organization's financial resources are examined.

6321 – Nursing Theory for Advanced Practice
Introduction to nursing theorists.  Analysis and comparison of selected theories from nursing and other disciplines, and evaluation of the theories for use in nursing education, administration and practice.  Theories discussed within the contexts of the research process, the development of nursing knowledge and the advancement of scientific practice.  Focus is on theories that have specific application in health disparities.

6290 - Informatics in Health Care
Introduction to the study of informatics. Focuses on the management of information in the modern health care system. Students will be introduced to the breadth of informatics, information management, the history and future of informatics in health care. Prerequisites: Demonstrated competency in basic computer skills including file management, word processing spreadsheets, databases, email, web browsing, and use of presentation software.

Additional Core Courses for CNL:

6358 – Curriculum Development in Nursing
This course is designed for graduate nursing students who plan to teach in nursing education programs whether it be in schools of nursing or institutions in which they work.  Students will learn about the principles and processes involved in building curricula.  The course includes examination of factors influencing the curricular components of planning, instruction, and evaluating.  This course is prerequisite to the course Teaching in Schools of Nursing.

6368 – Teaching in Schools of Nursing
This course follows the Curriculum Development course.  It is a study of methods of instruction and the roles of the teacher as well as the application of these in practice settings.  This courses includes a practicum.

63CS – Capstone
This capstone course allows students to apply selected research skills through collaboration with faculty on specific programs of research.  Students select from an array of research skills, contract with faculty to carry out a portion of the research project, and write up the findings in manuscript format suitable for publication.

Clinical Courses for CNL:

6331 – Aggregate Health I
Focuses on the development of health assessment skills for advanced nursing practice with aggregates of all ages who have been categorized with health disparities.  Includes in-depth study of epidemiology and nursing science with an emphasis on cross-cultural perspectives. 

6452 – Aggregate Health II
This course is designed to provide opportunities for students to apply  theoretical frameworks to the organization of assessment information in order to plan nursing care that addresses health disparities among vulnerable populations.  Through clinical experiences with an aggregate of the student’s choice, students diagnose and prioritize health care needs and design culturally and linguistically appropriate programs and services to meet those needs. 

6371 – Aggregate Health III
This is the final clinical course in the three-sequence courses.  Emphasis is on implementing and evaluating the health program developed in Aggregates I and II.  The student will continue to apply theoretical frameworks to implement and evaluate their selected program in either acute care or community settings.  The emphasis is on the role of the clinical nurse leader in providing care for a defined aggregate in relation to the health disparity and the affected population identified in Aggregates I and II.

Students who wish to take additional courses (more than 39 required hours) in education or administration to obtain a concentration in either area must have 12 hours in that area of concentration.  See your advisor for courses needed to complete that particular area of concentration.

Additional Core Courses for CNS:

6331 – Aggregate Health I
Focuses on the development of health assessment skills for advanced nursing practice with aggregates of all ages who have been categorized with health disparities.  Includes in-depth study of epidemiology and nursing science with an emphasis on cross-cultural perspectives. 

6323 – Advanced health Assessment
This course is required for the CNS students in the MSN program and for post graduate MSN students in the CNS program. THis course provides the student with the knowledge and skills for comprehensive health assessment acoss the adult lifespan. THis course includes laboratory skills lab and a practicum experience.

6325 – Pathophysiology
An advanced study of pathophysiological problems of the major body systems. Examples of alterations in physiological function are related to commonly encountered clinical situations. Includes study of the major organ systems with particular emphasis on the physical, biological, and integrating mechanisms.

6341 – Pharmacology
Application of pharmaceutical, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, pharmacologic, and pharmacotherapeutic principles in drug therapy management as required of nurses in advanced practice.

Clinical Major:

6537 – CNS I
This course addresses the unique and autonomous roles of the Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist as an Advanced Practice Nurse. Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist I is designed to begin the transition of the graduate nursing student into a specialty focus in acute and chronic illness across the continuum of care with an emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. In this course, students have the opportunity to develop, apply, and evaluate in-depth knowledge of pathophysiological process and evidenced-based interventions for disease management. The focus of the theoretical and clinical components of the course is on nursing and medical diagnoses and management, including pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatments. Practice is experiencing acute and chronic diseases. Clinical experiences include the implementation and evaluation of Adult Health Nursing-Clinical Nurse Specialist roles in a variety of health care settings.

6447 – CNS II
This course is a synthesizing experience in the development and implementation of the Clinical Nurse Specialist role in a collaborative, interdisciplinary model. The focus is ongoing clinical experiences and practice that integrate the theoretical and practice knowledge for the diagnosis and management of acutely or chronically ill adult patients. Emphasis is on clinical decision making which incorporates nursing and medical diagnoses, disease management and treatment to include prescriptive practices and culturally competent care. The preceptor clinical practicum will include a variety of health care settings with emphasis on appropriate primary and secondary prevention, health promotion, coordination of care across community systems of care.

6457 – CNS III (Preceptorship)
This course is a synthesizing experience in the development and implementation of the CNS role in a collaborative, interdisciplinary model. The focus of this course is ongoing clinical experiences and practice that integrate the theoretical and practical knowledge for the diagnosis and management of acutely or chronically ill adult patients. Emphasis is on clinical decision making which incorporates nursing and medical diagnosis, disease management and treatment to include prescriptive practices and culturally competent care. The preceptor clinical practicum will include a variety of health care settings with emphasis on appropriate primary and secondary prevention, health promotion, and coordination of care across community systems of care.

Students who wish to take additional courses (more than 42 required hours) in education or administration to obtain a concentration in either area must have 12 hours in that area of concentration.  See your advisor for courses needed to complete that particular area of concentration.

For further information, contact:
Dr. Holly Cassells
Professor, School of Nursing and Health Professions

University of the Incarnate Word
4301 Broadway, Box 300
San Antonio, TX 78209
(210) 829-3977


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