RN to MSN Course Descriptions

Program Facts:

  • 51 Credits
  • 360 Clinical Hours
  • 135 Clinical Hours for Bridge Work
  • Completion Time: 9 Semesters
  • Online Courses
  • One, 2-day, On-Campus Immersion 

Questions?
Contact: 

Kathryn Callaghan
Call or Text (509) 313-6235 or (866) 380-5323
Email: callaghan@gonzaga.edu 

Amy Smith
Call or Text (509) 313-6243 or (866) 380-5323
Email: smitha2@gonzaga.edu 

Undergraduate Course Descriptions - 15 total credits

Course are 8 or 16 weeks
The undergraduate bridge courses will take one full academic year (summer/fall/spring).

PHIL 280 – Person and Conduct - 3 credits

Two basic dimensions of philosophical investigation are inquiry into the nature and meaning of our being human (the philosophy of human nature) and inquiry into the right life and conduct of human being (ethics). This course undertakes these closely related investigations from a personalist perspective. What does it mean to be a person? In what ways does being a person enter into care (the ethics of care)?

NURS 320 – Stats for Health Professions - 3 credits

This online course provides an introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics. It includes the statistical procedures used most frequently to analyze quantitative data for health science and nursing research. Emphasis is placed on the conceptual understanding and correct application of statistical tests, as well as the correct interpretation of statistical results. Some mathematical calculation will be necessary. The ultimate goal will be for the learner to understand statistical reasoning and become familiar with the correct use and interpretation of statistics.

NURS 406 – Nursing Research - 3 credits

This course provides an introduction to quantitative and qualitative research principles and methodologies, including evaluation of research studies and application to practice. Critical analysis of nursing and health care research is emphasized. The course stresses research design, sampling, data collection strategies, and ethical considerations in research. Prerequisites: NURS 320

NURS 463 – Community Health - 3 credits


Designed for the licensed registered nurse, this course introduces community-as-partner model as a guide for providing cost-effective, accessible care for families, groups, and populations. Emphasis will be placed on cultural competence, the use of complex adaptive systems to understand the interaction among and between systems within community health practice, epidemiological concepts in the development of effective health policy/programs, and ethical dilemmas inherent in the community-as-partner model of practice. Concurrent: NURS 464

NURS 464 – Community Health Practicum - 3 credits

This practicum emphasizes the use of the community-as-partner model to guide community health practice. Students will explore the various dimensions of a healthy community as they actively participate in community health practice that emphasizes assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating cost-effective, accessible care for families, groups, and populations within a complex adaptive system. Students will expand their cultural competence, apply epidemiological concepts in the development of effective health policy/programs, and gain an appreciation of the ethical dilemmas inherent in the community-as-partner model of practice. Concurrent: NURS 463

MSN Core Courses

Courses are 8 weeks

NURS 561 - Information Technology & Data Management - 3 credits

This course explores the many uses of information technology and data management. The course provides learners with the knowledge and skills in information and healthcare technology needed to enhance communication and interprofessional collaboration in the current healthcare environment. The process of locating, accessing, and analyzing information and data is applied to advanced practice roles, enhancing patient safety, quality and outcomes, and improving population health.

NURS 562 - Theoretical Foundations for Healthcare Improvement - 3 credits

This course provides a theoretical orientation to become change agents in a variety of healthcare settings and diverse practice populations. The course provides learners with a foundation in theories significant to nursing practice such as complex adaptive systems, organizational and change theory, leadership and team-building models, and quality improvement and care models needed to assess, design, plan, implement, and evaluate a quality improvement project to promote patient-centered care and improve program outcomes.

NURS 563 – Evidence-Based Practice for Quality and Safety - 3 credits

This course provides learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for identifying and critically appraising evidence from qualitative and quantitative research traditions. The emphasis is on the examination of the essential elements of evidence-based-practice, including the formulation of answerable questions to address quality improvement and safety in a variety of advance practice roles and the systematic search for research evidence that can be used to answer researchable questions.

NURS 564 - Contemporary Healthcare Environment - 3 credits

This course explores the ethical and legal principles of healthcare and their impact on accessible, affordable, and quality care. This course provides learners with a framework for discussing ethical and legal issues with an emphasis on the ethical delivery of care to individuals, families, and populations. The scope and standards of advanced nursing roles will be examined along with current issues and policies that address health care disparities, health care organizations, financing, and quality. Strategies for analyzing and influencing public, professional, and institutional policies related to health care and its delivery will be considered.

NURS 565 - Clinical Prevention for Diverse Populations - 3 credits


The focus of this course is on the development of health promotion and disease prevention programs for diverse groups and populations. Selected concepts of epidemiology, broad determinants of health, population health, clinical prevention and cultural competence will be examined as they relate to the design and delivery of equitable clinical prevention and health promotion interventions and/or services to individuals, families, communities, and aggregates clinical populations.

Health Systems Leadership Core - 15 credits

Courses are 8 weeks

NURS 641A -- Nursing Leadership Development - 3 credits

This course advances the student's understanding of concepts introduced in the common core with a focus on the role of the nursing leader within the complexity of healthcare organizations. Emphasis is placed on the development of a professional plan and portfolio that reflect the intentional selection of a personal model of nurse leadership. Consideration is given to the use of change management theories in promoting organizational as well as personal and professional changes.

NURS 642A -- Quality and Information Management - 3 credits

This course focuses on the information management skills essential for effective nursing leadership in complex healthcare settings. Topics to be addressed include clinical information systems, benchmarking, and quality monitoring.

NURS 643A -- Communication and Relationship Management - 3 credits

This course addresses the role of the nurse as a healthcare systems leader in developing and sustaining relationships with employees and other healthcare providers within complex healthcare environments. Course content will address communication strategies, relationship management, conflict management and negotiation skills, and evaluation. Concepts related to legal, regulatory, and ethical aspects of employee hiring, performance evaluation, and termination will be reviewed. Consideration will be given to succession management.

NURS 644A -- Health Care Management - 3 credits

This course focuses on the financial management skills essential for effective nursing leadership in complex healthcare settings. Topics to be addressed include financing, administrative, financial, cost accounting systems, and budget development and oversight.

NURS 645A -- Legal, Regulatory, and Ethical Healthcare - 3 credits


This course addresses the role of the nurse as a health systems leader in relation to legal, regulatory, and ethical considerations in health care environments. Complex adaptive systems is used as the framework for examining legal and regulatory constraints that affect care delivery, patient and employee rights and responsibilities, and quality management, including patient safety and risk management. Tension between legal and ethical guidelines will be explored.

Health Care Leadership Practicum Courses - 6 credits

Courses are 16 weeks

NURS 631A -- Health Systems Leader Practicum I - 1-3 credits

This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting.

NURS 632A -- Health Systems Leader Practicum II - 1-3 credits


This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting. Prerequisite: NURS 631A

NURS 633A -- Health Systems Leader Practicum III - 1-3 credits

This practicum integrates knowledge from the didactic courses in the health organization setting. Prerequisite: NURS 632A

One Required Immersion

There is a required two-day, on-campus immersion during the last practicum course. Practicum experiences are arranged by the student to meet identified learning needs.

*Courses no longer required include: NURS 312, NURS 354, NURS 355, NURS 360, NURS 490/498.
The nursing department will waive these requirements for any current students who have not yet taken them. 

Program information subject to change.