Skip to Content

Master of Science in Nursing

Nursing Courses

NURS 201. Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice. 3 Units.

This course provides the foundational knowledge base for advanced nursing research and the core principles of evidence-based practice. Students will gain knowledge and skills to critically appraise and analyze evidence and then disseminate the evidence in a scholarly way including papers, posters, and presentations. This course prepares the student to find and use evidence to support individual clinical practice and appropriately apply evidence to different population-based settings. Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Science Nursing Program. Epidemiology NURS 217.

NURS 203. Interprofessional Health Care Theory, Ethics, and Quality Improvement. 3 Units.

Interprofessional Health Care Theory, Ethics, and Quality Improvement (3 units) - This course explores the theoretical and ethical basis of nursing practice, drawing on interprofessional and interdisciplinary perspectives in the health sciences and humanities. The role of the master’s prepared nurse in theory development, theory-based practice and ethical decision-making within collaborative interprofessional teams is emphasized. Quality, safety, and collaborative practice are universal values used as a framework for leading change to improve healthcare systems and outcomes. Improving the quality and safety of health care services requires multiple knowledge disciplines, effective communication, collaboration and teamwork. Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Science Nursing Program. Students in other School of Health Sciences (SOHS) programs may take this course as an elective with the permission of the instructor.

NURS 205. Health Care Policy and Delivery. 3 Units.

This course covers current challenges faced by the U.S. health care delivery system and how health policy, both historically and today, has sought to address these challenges. This system is compared with those of other nations to highlight its relative strengths and weaknesses. The course will consider health care concerns associated with population and public health, including how the behavior of individuals and groups influences health. Risk factors associated with vulnerable populations are identified and discussed. We will also explore the logistics of the health care system, including how it is organized, who makes up the workforce, how health care is financed, the costs and value of health care, how it is managed, and the role of information technology in this sector. Finally, we will take look at the future of health care delivery in the U.S. and of health care policy. Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Science Nursing Program. Students in other School of Health Sciences (SOHS) programs may take this course as an elective with the permission of the instructor.

NURS 207. Nursing Issues and Leadership. 3 Units.

This course explores the current complex health care systems in healthcare organizations to achieve The Triple Aim (IOM, 2010). Master’s prepared nurses are needed to advance from expert clinician to become transformational leaders to participate in changing challenges into opportunities for positive change to improve patient and healthcare outcomes. Students will explore their leadership strengths and area for improvement to advance their leadership capacity. Leadership skills needed for transformational leaders are studied and competencies mastered. The leadership role of the master’s prepared nurse in organizational and system change including new practice models are emphasized. Prerequisites: Admission to the MSN Program.

NURS 209. Foundations of Specialty Practice I. 3 Units.

This advanced pharmacology course is designed to prepare advanced practice primary care clinicians and managers with the knowledge of pharmacologic principles and the pharmacologic actions of the major drug classes. Pharmacological treatments will be discussed in relation to physiologic systems, with emphasis on the application of these agents. This course further studies best practices for medication management for Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes, Hyperlipidemia, and Community Acquired Pneumonia. With increased knowledge the advanced practice primary nurse will assume a leadership role in overseeing best practices for medication safety in any setting to enhance quality and safety and improved patient outcomes. Prerequisites: Students in good standing in the MSN Program. Students in other School of Health Sciences (SOHS) programs may take this course as an elective with the permission of the instructor.

NURS 211. Foundations of Specialty Practice II. 3 Units.

Specialty Practice II provides the graduate nursing student with comprehensive and systematic health assessment and physical examination skills to conduct health assessments for adults and older adults. Advanced cognitive and psychomotor skills allow graduate students the opportunity to practice using a diagnostic reasoning process. Students will conduct health histories, health assessments, focused review of systems, and physical exam techniques to inform diagnostic reasoning for a differential diagnosis. Students will incorporate anticipatory guidance and health promotion to establish a patient centered plan of care. Prerequisites: Students in good standing in the MSN Program. Students must be enrolled in the companion course Foundations in Specialty Practice III. Students in other School of Health Sciences (SOHS) programs may take this course as an elective with the permission of the instructor.

NURS 215. Synthesis Project. 3 Units.

Each student will complete an Evidence-Based Practice Improvement Project related to their specialty area of concentration under the direction of a faculty mentor. Students may build on a clinical topic from previous courses. The project will be a culmination and integration of previous coursework and new knowledge. The project will include a systematic review of the literature, an implementation plan with timeline, data analysis, outcome measures, and produce data to assess effectiveness and sustainability. The project will be summarized into a scholarly paper with the expectation for further dissemination. Prerequisites: All required MSN courses completed or concurrent.

NURS 217. Epidemiology. 3 Units.

Due to the changing landscape of health care and health care reform the role of the health care manager is evolving. Principles and application of epidemiology with its population-based perspective will serve as the focal point for planning, organizing, and evaluating health care services. Communities disease and consumption of health services are analyzed using epidemiological data. This course provides foundational knowledge for the advanced practice primary care nurse manager to understand how to use epidemiology data to plan, organize, and evaluate quality improvement efforts to enhance patient outcomes. Students will learn how to study the health needs for the populations they serve and determine what study design(s) best provide the needed data. Students will use relevant biostatistical data derived by epidemiology principles to study patient outcomes. Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Science Nursing Program. Students in other School of Health Sciences (SOHS) programs may take this course as an elective with the permission of the instructor.

NURS 219. Population Health. 3 Units.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 and the Institute of Healthcare Improvement Triple Aim (2008) provided the incentive to develop programs and initiatives aimed at improving the health of all Americans. Population health is referred to as the study of the distribution of health outcomes within a population, the health determinants of health that impact these populations, and the policies and interventions that affect the determinants. The collection of health care outcome data and its analysis serve as the framework for targeted program development, implementation, and evaluation of effectiveness. Population health interventions encompass health promotion, disease prevention as well as caring for the sick. This course provides the student with a comprehensive overview of population health. Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Science Nursing Program. Epidemiology NURS 217.

NURS 287. Practicum. 1-5 Units.

This course provides experiential learning opportunities related to the specialty practice area. Students work with qualified nurse preceptors to explore current best practices, evidence, and leadership strategies in the clinical setting. Practicum hours are computed based on 3 clinical hours: 1 credit hour ratio (within a 15-week semester). A total of 240 hours is completed averaging 16 hours a week. Students may extend this practicum for a second semester NURS 287B if they require additional weeks to complete the practicum hours. Students are required to complete a minimum of two units in NURS 287A to progress. Prerequisites: All required MSN courses completed or concurrent.

Program Outcomes

  1. Integrate, translate, and apply evidence and evolving evidence from nursing and other academic disciplines to inform clinical judgment an innovation into nursing practice in diverse healthcare settings.
  2. Demonstrate person-centered care that is holistic, just, respectful, and compassionate, and reflects the differences, values, needs, and preferences of the patient as a full partner in their care.
  3. Integrate clinical prevention, health promotion, and population health knowledge in the planning, design, management and evaluation of health care services for individuals, families, and aggregate populations.
  4. Generate, synthesize, translate, apply and disseminate research and evidence to advance patient outcomes and improve health care systems.
  5. Analyze organizational and systems of care and use quality improvement science strategies, tools, methods, and performance measures to improve safety and outcomes of patients and care systems.
  6. Engage in relationship centered leadership to build and sustain collaborative interprofessional teams to optimize care, enhance the experience, improve outcomes, and reduce costs.
  7. Integrate meaningful data obtained from information and healthcare technologies to monitor, manage, and improve the delivery of nursing and healthcare services in accordance with best practices.
  8. Participate in the health policy development process and employ advocacy strategies to influence health and healthcare.
  9. Formulate and cultivate a professional nursing identity that is accountable to patients, society, and the profession.
  10. Demonstrate organizational and systems leadership competencies for ethical and critical decision-making to build effective working relationships that result in high quality and safe systems of healthcare.
  11. Incorporate advanced knowledge and competencies into nursing specialty practice to improve healthcare outcomes at the individual, populations, or systems level.

Master of Science in Nursing Faculty

Karen Hanford, Program Director, BSN at San Francisco State, MSN at CSU, Chico, FNP at University of North Dakota, Doctorate on Educational Leadership at University of LaVerne