Graduate Nursing Certificate Schools

Graduate school nursing certificate programs enable nurses to build on the education they already have—potentially in a program anchored in their own communities. Programs ...

may focus on any number of nursing specialties, areas of responsibilities, or care settings. And if you’re looking to learn about something outside the realm of bedside care, some programs may focus on roles like nurse education, technology, and even leadership. Because many of these programs are designed to accommodate busy professionals, campus programs could offer flexible scheduling options—making an advanced education a possibility no matter what shift you work.

Why Attend A Graduate School To Earn Your Nursing Certificate

Earning graduate certificates in nursing in a campus setting could be an attractive option for a number of reasons. For one, if you attend a school in your area, you may study under instructors with experience in your local healthcare community. That means they may be able to speak to the unique needs of your local hospitals, patients, and community health concerns. A local perspective like this one could add value to any graduate nursing certificate program.

That’s not the only perk. Studying in a graduate school program, you’d have access to all the resources of that program found on campus. For example, you could work in cutting edge lab facilities or practice in simulated clinics—or even an active clinic, if your school maintains one. Plus, your school might have relationships with local hospitals. That connection could help you get a foot in the door if you ever need it. That, plus the friendships you could forge while studying alongside other dedicated nurses in your classes, could make attending graduate school nursing certificate programs a prime opportunity.

Types of Graduate Nursing Certificate Programs

Graduate schools might offer nursing certificate programs at a few different levels. These generally reflect the type of degree students hold (e.g. a BSN) and the types of courses that make up the curriculum. The two main types of graduate school nursing certificate programs are as follows.

  • Post-Baccalaureate Nursing Certificate Programs: Also referred to as masters certificates, these are aimed toward nurses who hold a bachelors degree but might not have attended graduate school before. The courses would be at a comparable level to masters programs.
  • Post-Masters Nursing Certificate Schools: These types of certificates generally require that students have at least a masters degree in nursing in addition to professional experience to attend. Often, they’re aimed toward nurses in advanced care roles. They generally build on masters education, and the courses are more advanced.

Concentration Areas

Graduate nursing certificate programs are fairly short compared to degree programs, made up of fewer courses and able to be completed in less time. As a result, many programs opt to focus on a specific concentration or specialty. These may coincide with students’ current roles or ones they aspire to, or address specific patient needs or care settings.

  • Nurse Midwife: Often, these programs are designed for nurses who already hold an MSN. Nurse Midwife certificates focus on women’s health, labor and delivery, and neonatal care in primary and critical care settings.
  • Nurse Anesthesia: Many Nurse Anesthetist programs require that students already hold an MSN. Nurse Anesthesia certificate programs focus on how to safely administer anesthesia to patients, and to deal with any challenges that may arise.
  • Nurse Educator: These certificate programs discuss the roles and responsibilities of nurse educators. Courses may discuss professional development, teaching in undergraduate nursing programs, educating patients and their families, and more.
  • Nurse Practitioner: Some nursing certificate programs are designed to help Nurse Practitioners expand their practice, or move into a new specialty. Said specialties could include things like pediatrics, primary care, or gerontology.
  • MSN Nursing Certificates: This category includes nursing certificate schools that require at least a masters in nursing in order to apply. Many (but not all) of these certificates are designed for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs).
  • Nurse Administration: Also sometimes called nurse leadership, these types of certificates aim to build organizational skills, leadership, and team management acumen to succeed in an administrative role.
  • Nursing Informatics: As healthcare evolves, technology and data management become more crucial than ever. Nurse informatics certificates aim to help nurses prepare for that reality, developing technological and data management skills. Nurses might use this expertise to help doctors, nurses, and families make the most of healthcare technology.
  • Nurse Specialties: Many graduate nursing certificate programs focus on a specific care setting, patient type, or health issue. These might be comparable to bedside care roles nurses might fill in an outpatient care setting or hospital. Examples include pediatrics, women’s health, primary care, critical care, gerontology, and more.

Search for Graduate School Nursing Certificate Programs

Start searching for graduate school nursing certificate programs right here. If you have your eye on a specific concentration area, choose that option from the menu. Then read more about those programs, and review the sponsored listings. Find out more by clicking on a listing that sounds promising. Then get in touch, schedule a meeting, or start to apply!