IU East Master of Science in Nursing degree moves on to final approval

Indiana University East received approval for a new graduate degree program from the Indiana Commission for Higher Education on February 11 in Indianapolis. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) could begin offering courses in fall 2011, pending final approval by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The new program provides registered nurses with advanced practice knowledge in the areas of nursing education and nursing administration.  Nurses with this advanced knowledge will enhance the delivery of health care in the community and throughout the region. Students who will be considered for enrollment in the program are practicing Registered Nurses (RNs) with a baccalaureate degree in nursing.

“With our new mission, we’re broadening the range of baccalaureate degrees and graduate programs that meet special needs in our region,” said Chancellor Nasser Paydar.  “Graduates of the master’s program in nursing will positively impact the health care of our citizens.”

Dean of the School of Nursing Karen Clark said the MSN program gives IU East the opportunity to provide education in nursing administration and nursing education at the graduate level.

“Preparing nurses with advanced knowledge will provide leaders and administrators who are well prepared to lead us through the changes we currently see in health care today, ultimately resulting in better health care for the citizens of our region,” Clark said. “Additionally, we will be better situated to deal with the critical shortage of nursing faculty members by preparing nurses who can teach in our schools of nursing.”

Students completing the MSN program will earn a minimum of 39 credit hours. The curriculum is aligned with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s Essentials of Masters Education and meets the requirements for accreditation by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), the accrediting bodies in professional nursing education.

Continued regional growth in health care services cannot be sustained without advancements in the level of nursing care. The Master of Science in Nursing will enable graduates to function in management positions requiring an advanced nursing degree. Hospitals, clinics, surgery centers, extended care facilities, and nurse-managed health centers, as well as a multitude of community agencies, are potential employers of advanced practice nurses.

The graduate program was previously approved by the Indiana University Board of Trustees during its October 2010 meeting.

For more information about the Master of Science in Nursing, contact the IU East School of Nursing at (765) 973-8213.