MSN - Frequently Asked Questions

A Master's of Science in Nursing degree from Gonzaga University will give you the leverage you need to advance your career as the demand for health care professionals reaches a critical need.

You will find answers to our most frequently asked questions below.

For Additional Questions:

Contact: Ethan Lewan
Call or Text (509) 313-6243 or (866) 380-5323

General Questions

Jesuits have been educating people since 1540. Gonzaga was founded in 1887 and continues to pursue a mission of educating leaders with the capacity for reflective and critical thought. Gonzaga's master's programs offer you the opportunity to pursue a degree that strives to educate the whole person: intellectually, spiritually, physically and emotionally.
Gonzaga is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). The baccalaureate, MSN, and DNP programs at Gonzaga University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 887-6791.
  • MSN in Nursing Leadership in Healthcare (NLH) - Nurses typically work as nurse managers, directors, CNO's and more. They are able to provide clinical and professional leadership and facilitate system improvements.
  • MSN as a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) - Nurse Practitioners provide a holistic approach to primary care for individuals and families of all ages and manage a wide variety of acute and chronic health problems.
  • MSN as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) - Nurse Practitioners provide a full range of services that comprise primary mental health care in diverse settings with a variety of clients/patients.
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) has recommended the DNP become the new standard for advance registered nurse practitioners. While both a MSN and DNP degree currently qualify you to sit for the certification exam, the Post-Bacc DNP program will ensure you meet all licensing requirements when future changes go into effect. Our Post-Bacc DNP program is a great option for students desiring to become nurse practitioners. It will take you from your bachelor's degree all the way to a terminal degree in nursing in less time than separately completing our MSN and Post-Master's DNP programs.
Currently, the MSN in Nursing Leadership in Healthcare, Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner tracks will prepare you to apply for Gonzaga University's Post-Master's Doctor of Nursing Practice Program. Students who are seeking further education should check the individual DNP/PhD program requirements for the various schools of interest.
You must complete your Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree program within five years.
If you choose the Family Nurse Practitioner track or the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner track, you may transfer up to 9 credits to apply toward the completion of the MSN program. If you choose the Nursing Leadership in Healthcare track you may transfer up to 6 credits. Transfer credits must be earned through graduate level courses that are not part of a conferred degree and are accepted at the discretion of faculty.
Graduates of the MSN program can request a verification of education (VOE) letter by emailing
We are happy to complete verification of education (VOE) forms throughout your career.  Please email: with your request.

The Course Experience

The courses are online; however, you do not have to log on at a certain time of day.  All tracks require a certain number of practicum hours.

  • 660 Practicum Hours - Family Nurse Practitioner
  • 660 Practicum Hours - Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • 180 Practicum Hours - Nursing Leadership in Healthcare
  • Additional on-campus, weekend immersions are required for all tracks.
The MSN core classes are 8 weeks in length. Track specific courses are offered as 16 week courses during the Spring and Fall semesters and 12 week courses during the Summer semesters. Throughout the program, students take a mix of 8 week, 12 week and 16 week courses.
Yes, the program requires on-campus weekend immersions which vary by track option.
  • NLH track requires 1 immersion
  • PMHNP track requires 5 immersions
  • FNP track requires 6 immersions.
  • Immersions do not typically start until halfway through the program, with 1-2 scheduled per semester
Yes, our program is designed for working professionals, so the majority of students are able to continue working as they attend full-time.  Faculty have recommended that students on the Nurse Practitioner track work a maximum of 20 hours a week once clinical hours start. You have the flexibility to adjust your progression plan if you feel you cannot attend full-time. 
No, we keep our classes small to maximize your learning environment, this does not allow you to accelerate your program.
The MSN program has deadlines for completing and submitting work, but no scheduled times for you to be logged into your class. You will enjoy the flexibility of having 24/7 access to online learning materials and benefit from discussion forums.
The MSN program does not use a cohort model. The program allows you the flexibility to slow down your progression plan as long as you complete degree requirements within five years.
The Student Services team is available to answer your questions and connect you to the resources you need.  You will also be assigned a faculty advisor to help you meet your academic goals.  Online students have access to all of Gonzaga's resources including:


  • Foley Library
  • IT Help Desk
  • Career Center
  • Grad Student Association
  • Disability Access
  • University Ministry 
We are all here to help you succeed.
You will need a headset with a microphone as well as Microsoft Office. The online format is also Mac compatible.

Practicum Requirements

We are committed to ensuring adequate and robust practicum experiences for our graduate students. Clinical placements are secured through a process shared by staff, program directors, students, faculty and clinical agencies.

Our Clinical Placement Team is dedicated to helping students secure sites and preceptors, as well as with processing contract/legal documentation required to clear students for clinical placement.

As an initial step in the process, students will proactively engage with their local providers to identify potential preceptors. The Clinical Placement Team will work with students to finalize clinical placements and preceptor experiences to meet course requirements.

The Department of Nursing maintains affiliation agreements with many facilities and providers across the western U.S. to support practicum learning experiences.

Students are responsible for their own transportation to clinical sites and should include this cost when calculating and planning for their educational expenses and scheduling demands.

You are encouraged to find practicum locations outside of your current facilities in order to learn, grow and have additional networking opportunities. With faculty approval, you can complete practicum hours at your place of employment. However, a preceptor may not be your direct supervisor, practicum hours must be separate from worked hours and practicum experiences must be performed on units other than where you work.

Tuition, Scholarships & Discounts

The cost per credit is competitive at $990* for Nursing Leadership in Healthcare courses and $1,130* per credit for Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner courses.  There are some fees associated with the program and you can find that information here.

*Tuition rates are subject to change.

We have a number of resources to help you fund your education.  As a graduate student you qualify for Federal Student Aid. This funding is not need based, follow the link to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Gonzaga also offers payment plan options and other financial resources.
The School of Health Sciences offers scholarships every semester, funds permitting.  


Gonzaga's Financial Aid Office also maintains a database of scholarships for students to access, search and apply for awards.
For NLH students we offer a 10% discount to active members of the military and their spouses, as well as to veterans.

For additional questions please contact an Admissions Counselor.

Call or Text (866) 380-5323

Program information is subject to change.

Program information is subject to change.