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Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with a Specialization in Nurse Educator

Earn Your MSN Nurse Educator Degree in Under 2 Years

Prepare for a rewarding career in education by earning your MSN nurse educator degree online in as little as 15 months. Our CCNE-accredited program offers flexible online classes and the opportunity to gain experience practicing your skills as an academic or clinical nurse educator. Learn more now!

Program is offered at the following campuses. Select a campus to learn more.


Earn your MSN nurse educator degree online in as little as 15 months.

Nurse Educator MSN Program Courses & On-Site Training

Our online MSN nurse educator programs can prepare you with the instructional and clinical skills needed to teach and mentor your fellow nurses. The MSN core courses can help you to strengthen your clinical judgment, critical thinking, communication, and leadership skills as well as further your mastery of evidence-based practice, health promotion, disease prevention, and more. Specifically, these courses will explore:

  • The role of the advanced practice nurse
  • Advanced theoretical perspectives for nursing
  • Advanced pathophysiology
  • Health policy and health promotion in advanced nursing practice
  • Nursing research methods

In the nurse educator courses online, you'll study topics like:

  • Teaching and learning strategies in nursing
  • Pharmacology
  • Advanced health and physical assessment
  • Evaluation of educational outcomes in nursing
  • Curriculum design and evaluation in nursing education

Through two on-site practicum courses, you can also gain 175+ hours of experience as a nurse educator while working under the supervision of a more seasoned instructor. You'll also conduct a scholarly project in which you combine and apply the advanced nursing knowledge, critical thinking, and research skills you've acquired in this program.

How to Become a Nurse Educator

In as little as 16 months, our online nurse educator MSN program can prepare you for nurse educator jobs in academic or clinical settings. After completing your nurse educator MSN degree, you will meet the requirements to sit for a nurse educator certification examination* through national certifying bodies such as the National League for Nursing. Certification is not required for all nurse educator jobs, but some academic institutions may prefer to hire a certified nurse educator over an individual who has not completed the certified nurse educator exam.

MSN Nurse Educator Admissions Requirements

Our admissions requirements for the Nurse Educator MSN program include:

  • Completion of the application for admission
  • A baccalaureate degree in nursing (or be a pending graduate) from an accredited U.S. collegiate institution
  • A CGPA of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 or at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for the last 60 semester hours (or 90 quarter credits) undertaken of undergraduate nursing courses completed
  • Completion of a three-semester credit hour undergraduate course (or equivalent) in statistics with a grade of C or better
  • Completion of an undergraduate nursing research course or equivalent with a grade of C or better
  • Submission of official transcripts from every college or university attended (within 10 weeks after the initial start date)
  • A valid unencumbered license as a registered nurse in the U.S. state or territory in all states in which licensed, in which the student completes all assignments for the program. (Note that military, federal, and foreign educated nurses must meet this state requirement for nursing licensure.) An unencumbered license must be maintained throughout the program.
  • Meet the Core Performance Standards and essential function related to the profession of nursing as described in the South University catalog
  • Satisfactory completion of an interview with the Chair/Program Director or designated faculty for campus-based students
  • Submission off the following:
    • Three references using the Nursing Graduate School Appraisal Form. At least one of your references should hold a master's or higher degree in nursing
    • An essay (goal statement) of 1-2 pages (typed, double-spaced) explaining your career goals, reasons for your choice of specialization, and why you want to pursue an advanced degree in nursing
    • A resume describing relevant work and professional and volunteer experiences

For answers to questions about our nurse educator MSN requirements or provisional admissions criteria, contact us at 1.800.688.0932. Financial aid and scholarships for our nurse educator programs are available to those who qualify.

RNs who do not hold a BSN can take a streamlined path preparing to become a nurse educator in our RN to MSN with a specialization in Nurse Educator program online.

Nurses who already hold a master’s degree in nursing should consider our post master’s Nurse Educator certificate program, which can be completed in as little as 11 months.

The Rising Importance of Academic and Clinical Nurse Educator Roles

The question, “Why become a nurse educator?” has many answers, including many organizations’ need to add and fill nurse educator jobs in response to expanding numbers of nursing students. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), a national nurse educator shortage has led to numerous institutions restricting nursing student enrollment, and, according to AACN numbers, more nurse educator jobs will open in the coming years as currently active educators retire.

Even the country’s top nursing schools may soon be heavily recruiting for open nurse educator jobs. As organizations search for candidates, the average nurse educator salary will vary by position, experience level, institution type, and geographic region, and institutions may offer a higher salary for a nurse educator with an MSN than a nurse with less education.

*Note: South University does not guarantee third-party certification/licensure. Outside agencies control the requirements for taking and passing certification/licensing exams and are subject to change without notice to South University.

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