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A MS in Nursing graduate wearing a white coat. With the text Dana Aulds '15G

Master's in Nursing Online MSN Degree Programs

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Register By: May 08 Classes Start: May 10

Advance with a Master’s in Nursing Online

  • $627/credit (39 credits total)
  • Transfer up to 12 graduate credits
  • 4 career-focused program tracks
  • Complete in as few as 20 months
  • No GRE/GMAT required
  • Program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)1

Online MSN Degree Program Overview

As the healthcare system continues to evolve, opportunities in nursing will steadily emerge. Now is the time to build on yesterday’s success and prepare for tomorrow’s future roles in healthcare.

Southern New Hampshire University's online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) can prepare you for these advanced positions with critical-thinking and leadership skills centered on patient care. This affordable master's in nursing online degree can also start you on the road to becoming an advanced practice nurse.

"The learning experience goes beyond being simply academic to practical in my everyday work," said Les Rothrock '15. "It has given me the edge to be better prepared and equipped in doing my job. I have learned how to research and problem solve issues in my work as well."

New therapies, technologies and complex medical treatments to address patient needs are introduced on a daily basis. Healthcare legislation and regulation are more stringent than ever before. To keep quality of care aligned with the industry's expectations and demands, healthcare organizations need highly educated nurses to fill leadership roles.

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) online program at SNHU prepares you with the key competencies necessary for continuous improvement of the safety and quality of healthcare systems.

Learn how to:

  • Propose initiatives and technologies that facilitate decision-making for patient care
  • Motivate change and drive improvement in healthcare
  • Create health prevention and promotion initiatives
  • Generate solutions for navigating quality and cost in healthcare excellence
  • Advocate for policies and effective systems that meet the needs of consumers
  • Build effective working relationships across organizations

There are 4 MSN tracks for students. You may choose to customize your degree with electives within the generalist MSN, or choose a specialty track that aligns with your career goals: 

  • Clinical Nurse Leader: Learn to become a leader in healthcare when you enroll in our Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Clinical Nurse Leader degree track. You'll gain theoretical and practical knowledge in the areas of leadership, research, evidence-based practice, care coordination and transition management. The program requires 400 clinical practice experience (CPE) hours, including 300 precepted practicum hours and 100 practical application hours. Graduates of the master's in nursing leadership program meet the educational requirements to sit for the Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) exam offered by the Commission on Nurse Certification (CNC).
  • Nurse Educator: Instill your passion for teaching – in academia or in the clinical setting – when you enroll in our Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Nurse Educator degree track. SNHU's program provides you with the essential skills required by registered nurses to function in the nurse educator role in academic, online and clinical settings – facilitating learning through curriculum design, teaching, evaluation and advisement. It requires 400 clinical practice experience (CPE) hours, including 120 precepted practicum hours and 280 practical application hours. Graduates of the master's in nursing education program meet the educational requirements to sit for the Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) exam offered by the National League for Nursing.
  • Patient Safety & Quality: Focus on the improvement of healthcare when you enroll in our online Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Patient Safety and Quality degree track. In this master's program, you'll develop knowledge about healthcare quality improvement, risk assessment, communication, legal issues and strategies that contribute to building a culture of safety and assuring accountability and reliability in care processes. This MSN patient safety and quality program requires 400 clinical practice experience (CPE) hours, which includes 280 practical application hours and 120 capstone hours.

No BSN yet? No problem! SNHU offers an accelerated RN to MSN pathway option that allows eligible registered nurses to achieve their MSN faster and for less money.

Career Outlook

A report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) titled ''The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health'' identifies a growing demand for qualified nurses who are prepared to meet the complex and changing needs of the 21st-century healthcare workforce.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of nurses with advanced skills and other medical and health services managers is projected to grow 18% through 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations.2 And the median annual pay in May 2019 for these managerial roles was $100,980.2

Bonnie Fecowicz with text: Bonnie Fecowicz "At Southern New Hampshire University, the quality of the program has allowed me to advance my career into more diverse roles as a director of nursing," said Bonnie Fecowicz '16, now a director of professional development and education at a New Hampshire hospital. "I use everything I learn every day in my position."

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, some of the most common direct and indirect care roles for MSN-educated nurses are3:

  • Clinical nurse leaders
  • Nurse administrators
  • Nurse educators
  • Nurse informatics specialists
  • Public health nurses

Top treatment centers – including ANCC Magnet hospitals – are actively looking for nurses with advanced degrees to take their patient care to the next level. A master's in nursing online degree can expand your nursing career employment and leadership opportunities and prepare you to serve as a clinical nurse leader, clinical nursing faculty member and a nursing administrator.

Start Your Journey Toward an Online MSN Degree

Courses & Curriculum

The master's in nursing online degree provides you with the opportunity to acquire key competencies necessary for nursing practice.

The MSN electives allow you to customize your degree with specialty knowledge in the areas of continuous improvement, quality and safety of healthcare systems, patient-centered care, inter-professional collaboration and evidence-based practice.

"The instructors at Southern New Hampshire University are professionals, they're friendly and they connect to you as a person," said Bonnie Fecowicz '16. "They share their personal lives with you and want you to share yours."

Curriculum Requirements & Resources

  • Clinical practice experience (CPE): SNHU incorporates authentic learning experiences into your MSN program. You'll be able to achieve these CPE hours through coursework and assignments and time spent with a mentor or preceptor, depending on your program choice. Our program requires 280 hours of practical application and 120 capstone hours.
  • Capstone project: Implement a scholarly project to facilitate change in a healthcare setting of your choice. You'll be asked to analyze the results and disseminate the findings through a written paper and presentation. SNHU's MSN capstone courses require the completion of precepted hours.

SNHU's MSN degree is 39 credits.

Students enrolled in the MSN Generalist and MSN Patient Safety and Quality programs must comply with requirements of the healthcare organizations where their practicum experiences will be completed at least one term in advance of the capstone course. These requirements may include (but are not limited to) criminal background checks and verification of licensure, immunization records, health insurance, and liability insurance. Students may incur additional costs to meet the healthcare organization requirements.

Tuition & Fees

Tuition rates for SNHU's online degree programs are among the lowest in the nation. We offer a 25% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.

Online Graduate Programs Per Course Per Credit Hour
Degree/Certificates $1,881 $627
(U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty)*
$1,410 $470

Tuition Rates are subject to change and are reviewed Annually.
*Note: students receiving this rate are not eligible for additional discounts.

Additional Costs:
$150 Graduation Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)

Students enrolled in MSN programs may be subject to ongoing licensure checks through a third party vendor, additional fees will apply and may vary by state.

Frequently Asked Questions

Licensure and Certification Disclosures

SNHU has provided additional information for programs that educationally prepare students for professional licensure or certification. Learn more about what that means for your program on our licensure and certification disclosure page.

University Accreditation

Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) as well as several other accrediting bodies.