Hybrid Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs

Hybrid nurse practitioner masters programs help registered nurses take their care to the next level and potentially concentrate on a specific field. They do that by leveraging the skills and knowledge you already have, while building new ones. These might include diagnosing your patients and treating them. It may involve prescribing medication. Programs might even talk about patient education. All that adds up to a holistic, care-oriented focus on patient wellness. And hybrid programs do all that, without losing sight of convenience and quality. With the flexibility of a hybrid program, you might pursue your education in a way that fits into your life, and your busy work schedule.

What to Expect in Hybrid Masters in Nurse Practitioner Programs

Hybrid masters in nurse practitioner programs aim to provide education in a uniquely flexible way - by anchoring online education on a local campus. That level of flexibility could be key, especially for an aspiring nurse practitioner. Many programs require students to have a bachelors degree and RN experience. As a result, students tend to be active, busy professionals, with obligations to help their patients every day.

But hybrid means more than just online. It also means that, on top of flexible online learning, you might not have to worry about sacrificing the resources of a campus program. For example, you could still have access to the laboratory space, simulated clinics, and other resources you might find on campus. And you could become part of a vital campus community, building up a support network of instructors and fellow nurses.

The specific ratio of online to campus experiences may vary between programs. Some may primarily offer online education, with minimal campus experiences, like practical evaluations, lab work, or clinical. Others may function a little differently. For more details, get in touch with the schools you’re considering.

Hybrid Masters of Nursing Nurse Practitioner Program Types

Some hybrid nurse practitioner masters programs allow students to pursue concentration areas. These generally center on specific patient populations and care settings. As such, some students may prefer a program that maps to the kind of work they’d like to do in the field. Here are some examples of the types of options you might find.

  • Acute Care vs. Primary Care: Both of these terms tell you something about the type of care you’re performing, instead of the type of patient. Acute means the program focuses on specific and short-term care like you’d find in outpatient clinics and hospitals. Primary care means it focuses on helping patients stay healthy long-term, such as in a doctor's office.
  • Hybrid Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: This concentration discusses caring for infants and toddlers. However, there can be some variation. Some programs might focus specifically on newborns and premature births. Meanwhile, others might overlap a little more with pediatric primary care.
  • Hybrid Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: These programs focus on the health and development of children. More than that, they center on how to provide them effective medical care. Some programs might focus on things like doing regular physicals, checkups, and appointments. Others might look more toward acute care settings.
  • Hybrid Adult Medicine & Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: Some programs are broad, focusing on the whole spectrum of adult health. Others might focus on gerontology specifically. That would involve things like end of life care and residential facility settings.
  • Hybrid Family Care Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: These programs tend to focus on primary care. By surveying the needs of patients of all ages, they aim to prepare students to treat whole families rather than certain members.
  • Psychiatric Care Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: These programs are unique in that they focus on treating people in psychiatric care settings. This might be in the form of residential facilities, or in short term or outpatient settings. Programs might touch on a variety of psychological, emotional, and behavioral issues faced by patients of all ages.

Remember that these and other program concentrations may vary from what is listed above. Some—like family nurse practitioner masters programs—might even cover multiple categories. If you have specific questions, reach out to your selected program for details.

Hybrid Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs: Field Experience

Hybrid nurse practitioner masters programs may have some non-classroom elements. This might include observations and clinical rotations. Clinical rotations involve working in a healthcare setting, guided by clinical instructor. These act as an opportunity to put your learning into practice and demonstrate your skills.

Field experience might be completed at a variety of hospitals and medical facilities local to you or your program. Students may take part in a single placement or a series of unique experiences in different work areas. This is where a hybrid format may prove useful. Universities may have a network of facilities to place you in. Some may even have hospitals on site. For more details about how this works in your program, reach out to your selected school.

Additional Nurse Practitioner Requirements

Currently, to work as a nurse practitioner in the US, you need to obtain a certification in addition to nurse practitioner education.i The specific certification you need might vary depending on the type of patients you see, the type of care you provide, and where you live. Some programs may be designed to prepare students to sit for exams and meet certification requirements. For more information on what you need to do to prepare, and how your program might support you throughout this process, contact your selected school.

What Do Nurse Practitioners Do?

Nurse practitioners might treat all different kinds of patients. And they might do so in a variety of care settings.  Examples could range from hospitals to small local clinics, to medical offices on school campuses. The key point is that NPs may be able to take on advanced tasks in patient care. They might be responsible for diagnosing and treating patients, prescribing medicating and more. The specifics may vary on an individual basis. Influences could include the type of medical facility the nurse works in, or the unique needs of their patients.ii

That’s why hybrid nurse practitioner masters programs are so diverse. A range of unique courses of study might be available, each one aiming to prepare students to provide a certain type of care. For example, you could choose a program tailored to the needs of your target patient community. Or you could opt for a broader program, to build more generalized skills and prepare for almost any situation.

Example Nurse Practitioner Salary & Career Info

Since nurse practitioners may work in a variety of care settings, salary and responsibilities might vary widely. Other factors influencing the kinds of opportunities and compensation available include location, practice specialty, and level of experience. In 2015, the estimated national median salary for nurse practitioners was $98,190.iii

Search for Hybrid Nurse Practitioner Masters Programs

Start searching for your hybrid nurse practitioner masters program right here! GradSchools.com has a variety of options listed for you to consider. Review the sponsored listings here, and when you find one you might be interested in, click on the program name to learn more. Then get in touch to answer any questions, or find out about the application process.

 

[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-2 | [iii] bls.gov/oes/current/oes291171.htm

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