Hybrid MSN Nursing Degree

Hybrid MSN degrees seek to help students develop a complete grasp of a specific field of nursing through concentrated coursework and clinical requirements. Plus, hybrid MSN nursing degrees mix the flexibility of online programs and the structure of on-campus programs to provide an innovative learning experience. As a result, a hybrid MSN nursing degree could be a perfect choice for experienced professionals looking to deepen their knowledge and potentially enhance their career. Working nurses could perform coursework around busy schedules, without sacrificing the classroom experience.

Hybrid MSN Nursing degree info

Fun Fact:

The first nursing school was established in India in 250 BC.

Hybrid MSN Degree: Basics

While earning a hybrid masters of science in nursing degree, programs examine how to provide the best care to patients throughout the lifespan. For example, you might study how to integrate leadership skills, how to turn theory into practice, and how to diagnose various health problems. This is done through a combination of online and on campus coursework and clinical study.

Some classes may be entirely online and others entirely on-campus. Other schools have a combination of the two formats within individual classes. Hybrid MSN programs may also ask that you go on-campus to attend more technical classes, perform some coursework, and complete hands-on clinical study. Check with a few different schools to find a perfect match for your learning style and your goals.

How Do You Earn a Hybrid MSN Nursing Degree?

  1. Select a concentration.
  2. Complete required courses and coursework.
  3. Complete clinical or practicum hours. (May not apply to all programs)

Choosing a concentration allows you to focus your course of study and potentially deepen your knowledge in that field. Often, focused curriculum is designed to prepare you for a national certification exam as well. Certification may be required to practice in a state. However, this varies, so follow up with programs and state organizations for details.

In addition to all required courses, many programs ask that you perform a number of clinical or practicum hours. This allows you to work under the mentorship of an experienced preceptor to gain hands-on experience. The specific number of clinical hours varies, but typically ranges from 125 to 160 hours. However, each school and each concentration has different requirements.

How Long Does it Take to Earn a Hybrid MSN Degree?

Typically, it takes students two years of full time study to earn their hybrid MSN degree. However, many hybrid MSN programs are designed for part-time students who work full-time. These students could expect to complete their program in an average of three years. Programs vary.

Hybrid MSN Degrees: Concentrations

When pursuing a hybrid MSN degree, there may be number of different concentrations available. While most programs don’t offer every concentration, many provide several options in specific fields of nursing. Therefore, you should check with a few schools to find one that matches your specific goals. Some of the available concentrations include those listed here.

  • Adult Gerontology (Acute and Primary Care)
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (Acute and Primary Care)
  • Neonate Nurse Practitioner
  • Health Care Leadership
  • Women’s Health
  • Nurse Midwifery
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
  • Nurse Anesthesia
  • Nursing Education

Keep in mind that this is not a complete list. Each school is different and may offer additional focus areas.

Common Courses While Pursuing a Hybrid MSN Degree

While pursuing your hybrid MSN nursing degree, courses combine theory, research, and application, as well as learning formats, to provide you a complete understanding of nursing principles. Core courses typically cover leadership and critical thinking skills, as well as a background in effective policy making through data and effective use of technology. Other courses may be based upon your concentration.

Some of the courses you may take while pursing your masters of science in nursing degree include the following.

  • Epidemiology
  • Care Coordination and Outcomes Management
  • Healthcare Quality and Improvement
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Health Care Policy and Ethics for Contemporary Nursing Practice
  • Evidence Based Practice for Quality Care
  • Integrating Technology into Nursing Education
  • Assessment and Evaluation in Nursing Education
  • Economics and Decision-Making in Health Care
  • Emerging Health Care Models and Care Coordination

The specific courses will vary from school to school. Check with a few different hybrid MSN programs to find a great match for you.

Accreditations for Hybrid Masters of Science in Nursing Degrees 

Accreditation could be an important factor when choosing where to earn your hybrid MSN degree. While there are a few different accreditations available, the two most common accrediting bodies for MSN programs are listed here.

  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE): This is an autonomous accrediting agency that ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate, and residency programs. Accredited programs focus on continuous improvement of curriculum, fostering innovation, and produce effective and socially responsible graduates.
  • Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN): The ACEN is a voluntary, self-regulated accrediting process that distinguishes programs that meet or exceed criteria for educational quality. Typically, successful programs achieve results by providing modern curriculum and teaching methods.

What Are the Potential Benefits of a Bridge Program in Nursing?

Bridge programs, such as RN to MSN programs, allow Registered Nurses (RNs) who have earned a bachelors degree in another field, to pursue a MSN without having to earn a BSN first. Normally, programs offer these students a number of “bridge courses” that cover important topics that would’ve been included while earning a BSN.

While bridge programs take longer than regular MSN programs due to the additional course requirements, it takes less time than earning a BSN and then a MSN. Most students can earn their RN to MSN in three years. However, it may take longer for part-time students.

Common Careers for Graduates with Hybrid MSN Degrees

Often, upon earning a hybrid MSN degree, students pursue a career as an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN). This is a broad category, which may include several different positions. These typically correlate to concentrations available while pursuing your MSN degree and require a masters degree from an accredited program.i

Some of these roles, and their 2015 median annual salary, include those listed here.

  • Nurse Anesthetists: $157,140
  • Nurse Practitioners: $98,190
  • Nurse Midwives: $92,510 ii

Additional Certifications for APRNs

Many APRN positions require that you earn a national certification in your specific field after earning your MSN. However, specific rules vary from state to state. Fortunately, MSN degrees often have curriculum designed to prepare you for certification exams. However, you should check with each school to see their specific structure.

Common certifying bodies are listed here.

  • National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists
  • American Midwifery Certification Board
  • American Nursing Credentialing Center
  • Pediatric Nursing Certification Boardi

Take the Next Step!

Are you looking for a degree that teaches how to help patients with disease prevention and recovery? Are you looking for a format that combines the flexibility of online learning with the face-to-face interactions of on-campus programs?

Take the next step to find the perfect hybrid MSN program for your goals. Click on any of the sponsored listings on the page to see program descriptions, specific courses, and graduation requirements. You can even contact your favorites directly to request more information.

Source: [i]bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm#tab-4 | [ii]bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm#tab-5

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