smiling female nurse wearing lab coat in medical hallway

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

Master's Degree

Online Program

Next Start Dates
October 02, 2023
January 02, 2024

18 months estimated time to completion with full-time study1

Under $15,000 total estimated program cost2

CCNE accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education3

Step Out as a Leader with Your MSN for Under $15K

Logo: CCNE accreditationOur online CCNE-accredited3 Master’s degree in Nursing supports working nurses like you with flexible schedules and valuable support. If you’re a registered nurse with a BSN, this is a powerful next step to build your identity as a nurse leader without taking a break from your career.

Our online Empowered Learning courses offer the kind of time flexibility that really helps as you’re managing work shifts along with your education. Many nurses also appreciate the focus on doing real-world projects in each class. Empowered Learning also allows you to:

  • Go faster when you can, and slower when you need to
  • Join the live online lectures or listen to recorded lectures when it's convenient, with no weekly deadlines
  • Learn at your pace while staying connected with faculty and peers
  • Showcase your competencies and skills to employers with your digital Comprehensive Learner Record

With an affordable cost under $15,000 (excluding the MSN Nurse Practitioner specializations),2 four start dates a year and no GRE®4 requirement, qualified applicants can start the MSN program without delay.

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Nursing Specializations

Your nursing talents are unique. That’s why Rasmussen University gives you the choice of three specializations to help define your career course. Prepare for the current and future of healthcare as a nursing leader, regardless of the specialization you choose. Each specialization includes a common foundation of seven core MSN courses, but allows you to pursue your passion with five specialization-specific courses. You'll also have the opportunity to apply newly-acquired advanced skills through practicum experiences in your own community.

  • Nursing Leadership and Administration

    You Bring

    • An interest in leadership and the business side of nursing
    • A passion for clinical excellence and affecting change in nursing practices and patient care
    • Readiness to impact management and policy discussions

    You'll Study

    • Nursing leadership
    • Administration and interdisciplinary collaboration
    • Human resources/performance management
    • Finances

    Career Paths

    • Chief nursing officer
    • Director of nursing
    • Nurse manager
    • Nurse administrator
    • Nurse executive
    • Nurse compliance inspector
    • Case manager
    Specialization Courses
    • Advanced Nursing Leadership // NGR 6801
      • Focuses on the knowledge, abilities and skills that guide advanced nursing leadership.
    • Meaningful Communication and Collaboration // NGR 6250
      • Emphasizes the importance of effective communication and building relationships to help facilitate leadership.
    • The Business Side of Nursing // NGR 6100
      • Provides the tools to evaluate healthcare economics as an essential part of nursing leadership development.
    • Leadership and Management in Advanced Nursing Practice // NGR 6117
      • An indirect-care practicum that allows you to utilize newly-developed leadership knowledge and skills at an advanced nursing practice level.
    • Advanced Nursing Practice // NGR 6703
      • Frames the opportunity to engage in a graduate level, direct-care practicum integrating newly-acquired advanced nursing knowledge into practice.
  • Nursing Education

    You Bring

    • A passion to train and educate current and future nurses for a role in hospital or academic settings
    • A desire to assist in the career growth of current and future nurses, and help address nursing shortages

    You'll Study

    • Nursing leadership within an educational setting
    • How to build pathways to create transformational learning
    • Effective curriculum design
    • A variety of teaching strategies

    Career Paths

    • Director of education
    • Nursing faculty
    • Academic leadership
    • Staff development leader in healthcare organizations
    Specialization Courses
    • Role of the Nurse Educator // NGR 6701
      • Teaches the essential foundations of the nurse educator role.
    • Curriculum Design and Program Evaluation // NGR 6300
      • Analyzes the ingredients in building a successful curriculum. Learn how to evaluate programs and how to align with evidence-based nursing education strategies and national guidelines.
    • Nursing Education in the Classroom // NGR 6050
      • Implements working strategies to improve levels of achievement. Practicum focuses on the role of the nurse-educator and the application of creative teaching strategies.
    • Nursing Education in the Clinical Setting // NGR 6150
      • Centers on the role of a clinical nurse educator, with a practicum experience focusing on creative teaching strategies in a clinical environment.
    • Advanced Nursing Practice // NGR 6703
      • Frames the opportunity to engage in a graduate level, direct-care practicum integrating newly-acquired advanced nursing knowledge into practice.
  • Healthcare Technology, Simulation and Informatics

    You Bring

    • A passion to pursue transformative healthcare through informatics, emerging technology and simulation
    • Readiness to champion innovation through the lens of technology and data
    • A passion to serve as a translator and health technology innovator to amplify the voices of clinicians and patients

    You'll Study

    • The use of simulation in healthcare and nursing education
    • Evolving opportunities in nursing informatics, where data and technology are leveraged to drive desired outcomes
    • The latest and emerging healthcare-advancing technologies

    Career Paths

    • Chief nursing informatics officer
    • Director of clinical Informatics
    • Clinical analyst
    • Nursing/clinical informatics specialist
    • Clinical educator
    • Simulation education specialist
    • Simulation coordinator or technologist
    • Director of innovation
    • Innovation specialist
    Specialization Courses
    • Healthcare Technology // NGR 6820
      • Examines the use of current health technology and considers the direction of future innovation.
    • Simulation in Healthcare // NGR 6716
      • Focuses on best practices for simulation-based education (SBE), with an opportunity to design components of simulation experiences and operations.
    • Informatics in Advanced Nursing Practice // NGR 6870
      • Introduces the foundations of nursing informatics. Includes standards of professional practice and use of evidence and theories specific to informatics.
    • Integrating Technology // NGR 6840
      • A chance to show your skills in an indirect-care practicum experience. Take part in analysis of internal and external evidence; devise theories and solutions to real problems.
    • Advanced Nursing Practice // NGR 6703
      • Frames the opportunity to engage in a graduate level, direct-care practicum integrating newly-acquired advanced nursing knowledge into practice.

What Skills Will I Gain?

Nursing Leadership

Influence both future and current frontline nurses by educating future nurses or collaborating as an administrative leader. Address changing public health needs in local and global communities.

Guide Practice Decisions

Learn how to lead advanced healthcare assessments, whether working with a team, developing a teaching strategy or creating solutions through the latest technology.

Improve Healthcare Delivery

Integrate informatics and scientific principles to advance outcomes for patients and your organization.

Drive Strategic Change

Develop budgets, strategies and simulations that support healthcare advancements and organizational goals. Enhance soft skills that transfer into every role.

Built for Working Nurses

Our program is designed for busy nurses, so you can continue to work while you earn your degree. We offer 100% online curriculum complemented by local practicum experiences and four start dates per year.

MSN on Your Schedule

Online Empowered Learning courses allow you to learn by doing and manage your pace. Go faster when you can, and slower when you need to with no weekly deadlines.

Support at Every Turn

From 24/7 tech support, experienced faculty, graduate services advisors and career services to library and learning services with over 400,000 ebooks and electronic reference materials, we’re dedicated to a robust learning community.

Take the Next Step—Talk to Us!

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  • Program details and coursework
  • Application process
  • Choosing your specialization
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  • Detailed program plans

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Your Nursing Career Path

With the many Nursing programs at Rasmussen University, you can easily transfer credits from one level to the next, saving you time and money. In order to enroll for your MSN, you’ll need your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). At the MSN level, you can start to specialize your practice and see exactly where you want to lead other nurses. If you have goals of continuing to your DNP, your MSN sets you up perfectly to pursue your DNP with us.

  • Bachelor’s Degree: Nursing (RN to BSN or BSN)

    Next step if:

    You’re ready to earn your BSN, want to become a Bachelor-prepared registered nurse and are looking for opportunities to advance your career.

    View RN to BSN details >

    Or start here if:

    You want to begin your nursing career as a BSN-prepared registered nurse. Choose from two pre-licensure entry tracks—standard and second degree.

    View BSN details >

    Finish in as few as:

    12 to 18 months (RN to BSN)1
    33 months (BSN Standard Degree)*
    18 months (BSN Second Degree)

    *Already an LPN? Our LPN to RN Bridge helps LPNs become RNs faster, further decreasing your time to program completion.

    Registered Nurse

    (median annual wage by industry)5

    • Government: $84,490
    • Hospitals; state, local and private: $76,840
    • Ambulatory healthcare services: $72,340
    • Nursing and residential care facilities: $68,450
    • Educational services; state, local and private: $64,630
  • Master’s Degree: Nursing (MSN)

    Next step if:

    You want to influence present and future healthcare as a nursing leader. You have the choice of three specializations that allow you to define your career course.

    • Nursing Leadership and Administration
    • Nursing Education
    • Healthcare Technology, Simulation and Informatics

    We also offer an online MSN Nurse Practitioner (NP) program if you're interested in making a positive impact as a nurse practitioner with the choice of four specializations:

    • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care NP
    • Family NP
    • Pediatric Primary Care NP
    • Psychiatric-Mental Health NP

    Finish in as few as:

    18 months1

    Career Path Examples:

    Nursing Instructors and Teachers5

    • $41,930 (10th Percentile)
    • $57,660 (25th Percentile)
    • $75,470 (50th Percentile)

    Registered Nurse5

    • $53,410 (10th Percentile)
    • $61,630 (25th Percentile)
    • $75,330 (50th Percentile)

    Other Sample Job Titles:

    • Director of Nursing
    • Director of Education
    • Clinical Nursing Informatics Officer
    • Chief Nursing Officer
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

    Next step if:

    You’re called to lead at the highest levels in healthcare, public health and policy—the definitive terminal degree for nurse leaders.

    Choose the specialization that best aligns with your interests and career goals:

    • Executive Leadership
    • Public Health and Policy

    Finish in as few as:

    21 months1

    Career Path Examples:

    Medical and Health Services Managers5

    • $59, 980 (10th Percentile)
    • $78,820 (25th Percentile)
    • $104,280 (50th Percentile)

    Sample Job Titles:

    • Chief Nursing Officer
    • Nursing Administrator
    • Director of Public Health and Policy
    • Government or Policy Activist

Affordable Education

Tuition & Savings

Do the Math

We are committed to providing affordable tuition and breaking down the numbers so that you can see how achievable your goals are. With four start dates a year, 11-week terms and a total of 12 courses, full-time students can finish in as few as 18 months1for as low as $15,000.2

$260 cost per credit
x 48 total credits
$12,480 total tuition
+ $2,460 total fees
$14,940 estimated total program cost

Learn more about the financial aid cost of attendance (COA).

Explore Our Tuition Estimator Tool

Earn Your MSN for Under $15K

Complete your MSN degree for less than $15,000 (excluding the MSN Nurse Practitioner specializations).2

No GRE®4 requirements and four start dates a year—you'll start classes and be on your way to your MSN degree.

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Entrance Requirements

Applicants to this program must hold a conferred Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from a regionally or nationally accredited college or university with a cumulative 3.0 GPA or higher, possess a current unencumbered RN license that is valid in the United States and provide two professional letters of reference. This program is not available to residents of all states. Please speak with an admissions advisor to determine your eligibility for enrollment. A cleared background check will be required for participation at practicum sites.

Talk to an Admissions Advisor

What Should I Know Before I Enroll?

Help Paying for College

You’re not alone figuring out how to pay for college. Our admissions advisors can help you find ways to save through loans, scholarships and more.

Support at Every Turn

You’ll find the support you need to grow as a nurse from mentors and faculty in this program. Our library services, academic support and career planning teams are ready to help.

Dedicated Career Services

Job-search strategies, resume building, interview practice and employer networking—online and available anytime.

You've Got Questions, We've Got Answers

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does the MSN program have required practicums?

    Practicum experiences are required in all CCNE-accredited programs, and ours have been designed to be completely manageable—even with your work and personal life responsibilities.3

  • How do practicums work in an online program?

    Practicum experiences are in your own community—possibly at your own organization and under the supervision of a Master's or Doctoral degree-prepared nurse preceptor. If needed, we can help you identify your practicum experience locations.

  • My life is super busy. Do I have time to do my work AND earn a degree?

    The MSN degree program is built for working professionals like you with online Empowered Learning courses, which allow you to learn by doing, manage your pace and stay connected to faculty and peers. You can participate in live sessions or listen to the recorded sessions when it's convenient. Our model allows for flexibility in each course. No weekly deadlines mean you have the ability to manage your schedule within each term while also striving to complete your degree as quickly as possible.

  • There are so many medical tech advancements. Does the MSN program keep me up to speed?

    Rasmussen University has a commitment to being at the forefront of current trends. No matter what specialization you pursue, you’ll be familiar with and ready for the future state of health care.

  • Do I have to pursue a specialization?

    Yes, we offer these professional MSN specializations:

    • Nursing Leadership and Administration
    • Nursing Education
    • Healthcare Technology, Simulation and Informatics

    We also offer these advanced MSN Nurse Practitioner specializations:

    • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (AGPCNP)
    • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
    • Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (PPCNP)
    • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP)
  • Where is the MSN program offered?

    Our MSN degree program is offered online with practicum experiences in your own community. This program is not available to residents of all states. Please speak with an admissions advisor to determine your eligibility for enrollment.

  • Is this MSN degree program aligned with advanced nursing standards?

    Rasmussen University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (, an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

    Our MSN degree curriculum is aligned with the National League for Nursing (NLN) Outcomes and Competencies for Graduates of Nursing Programs, Quality and Safety Education for Nurses (QSEN) Competencies, and the Essentials of Master’s Education in Nursing, a set of standards designed by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).

Don't See Your Question Here?

Our dedicated team of admissions advisors can help you answer questions related to tuition, financial aid, admissions and more.

Request More Information

Call: 877-308-9946


Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

Rasmussen University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (, an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

The master‘s degree program in nursing at Rasmussen University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Logo: CCNE accreditationCommission on Collegiate Nursing Education
655 K Street, NW
Suite 750
Washington, DC 20001

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