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RN to MSN Online Degree Program (Nursing Informatics)

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RN to MSN Informatics Online Degree Overview

With data becoming a critical part of healthcare policy implementation, hospitals across the country are looking for qualified nurses to fill important informaticist roles. If you are a Registered Nurse interested in using the available data to improve care and population outcomes, then earn your Master of Science in Nursing as an Informaticist (RN to MSN, Nursing Informatics). 

The Affordable Care Act has brought dramatic changes to the healthcare landscape. With federal funding now tied directly to patient outcomes, the continued viability of health systems depends upon harnessing data points in order to effect positive change across departments. This allows skilled nursing professionals to harness their clinical experience while acting as an analyst and liaison to health system IT.

Nursing salaries for nurse informaticists vary widely in the U.S. and are based upon many factors, including geography, job description, specialty and experience. Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) conducted a survey in 2020 that found a median salary of $100,000 across the United States, with nursing informatics certification holders generating a higher average salary than those who don't.

Program Perks
  • Online, CCNE-accredited track can be completed in 33 months
  • No GRE required
  • Designed for RNs with interest in harnessing data analysis to optimize patient & population outcomes
  • Act as liaison between healthcare, IT and nursing departments
  • All students will receive a national and chapter membership to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS)
  • Courses are 5-10 weeks long, with 1 week off before next course
  • Students can access courses at any time of day and from anywhere 
  • Upon completion of the program, graduates will have 200 clinical hours and be eligible for informatics certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.
CCNE

Accreditation & Licensure

The baccalaureate degree program in nursing/master's degree program in nursing/Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Nebraska Methodist College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 887-6791.

Graduates must pass programatic certification exam based on practice specialty

Admissions Information

Criteria

Applicants are evaluated on the basis of the following criteria:

  • Graduation from an associate degree or diploma RN state approved program of nursing or a program professionally accredited by NLN CNEA or ACEN.
  • GPA of 3.0 or above; GPA below 3.0 will be considered on an individual basis
  • Current unencumbered licensure as a Registered Nurse
  • Non-Nebraska Residents meet State Authorization
  • No GRE required for admission 

After the Bridge Courses, your GPA will be reviewed again before the first graduate course. A GPA of 3.0 or above is required. A GPA below 3.0 will be considered on an individual basis.

Requirements

To be considered for admission, the following items must be submitted to the Admissions Office:

Deadlines

Prospective students may apply anytime and are accepted from deadlines throughout the year. Applications will be reviewed upon receipt, and students will be notified of their application status by letter or phone.

Starting Term - Spring 2022

Standard Deadline - 11/15/2021

Starting Term - Fall 2022

Standard Deadline - 7/15/2022

Costs & Financial Aid

NMC is committed to helping you find every avenue to finance your education. View the Tuition by Program & Degree page for a comprehensive list of all fees.

Cost Per Credit Hour

$308 | 565

NMC Scholarships

NMC Scholarships consist of funds generously provided by the Methodist Hospital Foundation to assist our students.

Student Grants or Loans

Visit our Financial Aid page to learn more about what's available and how to apply.

Employee Education Benefits

Employees of Methodist Health System can find details on the MHS Intranet.

External Scholarships

Visit our Scholarships page to learn more.

Calculate Your Net Price

Nebraska Methodist College Net Price Calculator.

Curriculum

All RN to MSN students are required to complete specific coursework. This list should only be used as a curriculum guide. Course listings and required curriculum are subject to change. A student must earn a minimum of 36 credit hours to be eligible for the Master of Science in Nursing.

The RN to MSN track for the RN without a bachelor's degree affords the RN the ability to earn 18 semester credit hours of undergraduate bridge courses (statistics, leadership, research, health assessment, population health) and then transition into the MSN Program without receiving a BSN.

As students advance into the MSN, Nurse Informatics Program, their GPA will be reviewed again before the first graduate course. A GPA of 3.0 or above is required. A GPA below 3.0 will be considered on an individual basis.

The combination of MSN and undergrad bridge coursework equates to a total of 54 credit hours.

Bridge

NRS 403
HEALTH ASSESSMENT FOR RN’S
DETAILS
This course discusses theory and concepts of holistic health assessment across the lifespan. Advancement of skills in history taking, health assessment, and health promotion using concepts of evidence-based practice, critical thinking, genetics/genomics, quality and safety to provide caring, culturally-competent professional nursing care are emphasized. Students will collaborate with a preceptor to perform health assessments in a clinical setting.

Prerequisites: Placement: Admission to the RN to BSN Program or RN to MSN Program

NRS 447
COLLABORATIVE LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT IN NURSING
DETAILS

This course analyzes leadership and management theories in relation to trends in nursing and healthcare. The concepts of change, power, collaboration, gender dynamics, interdisciplinary teamwork, and advocacy are examined and applied to the practice of nursing. Quality improvement, healthy workplace, civility, change management, and health care reform will also be a focus.  Using a global perspective, students will analyze, evaluate, and create possible solutions to nursing and population healthcare issues.

Prerequisites: Placement: Accelerated BSN students or Admission to the RN to BSN Program or RN to MSN Program

NRS 478/478C
POPULATION CENTERED CARE IN THE COMMUNITY
DETAILS

Prerequisites: Placement: Admission to the RN to BSN Program or RN to MSN Program

MAT 260
INTRODUCTION TO STATISTICS
DETAILS
This course is designed to introduce students to the methods used in organizing, summarizing, analyzing and interpreting quantitative information. Emphasis is placed on application of statistical methods and on the interpretation of statistically significant data.

SSC 370
RESEARCH METHODS
DETAILS
This course is designed to assist the student in developing an understanding of the research process in qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods designs. The student learns to selectively apply the steps of research and to critically analyze research studies culminating in formal, oral and written projects.

Prerequisites: Determined by major

Required

IDS 754
HEALTHCARE POLICY
DETAILS
This course provides a foundation for analyzing the social and political forces that influence healthcare policy decisions. The relationship between health policy, social justice, and practice will be explored. Students will examine current healthcare policy and factors which influence policy development. The healthcare policy will be investigated. (Cross-listed with IDS 754)

NRS 509
ADVANCED NURSING ROLES & PHENOMENA
DETAILS
This course facilitates the transition of the nurse into the advanced nursing role. The contributions of five ways of knowing to nursing praxis are examined, and students reflect on the use of these ways in their own practice. To broaden understanding of the concerns of nursing, students explore concepts, conceptual meaning and concept analysis. Students begin to develop their professional portfolio based on program outcomes.

Prerequisites: To be taken first semester or by permission

NRS 513
MEASUREMENT & STATISTICAL CONCEPTS FOR DATA INTERPRETATION
DETAILS
In this course, students apply nursing knowledge with theory and statistical methods to broaden understanding of nursing concepts and nursing outcomes. Measurement principles, descriptive statistics and relationships between variables are explored to better comprehend nursing and nursing phenomena. Using the framework of disparity and risk in a specific population, students apply content on variable association. Reports using statistics to compare groups and measure patient improvement over time are analyzed for implications for patient populations.

Prerequisites: NRS 509 or by permission

NRS 517
CRITICAL APPRAISAL OF KNOWLEDGE FOR PRACTICE
DETAILS
The purpose of this course is the understanding of research processes and interpretation of statistics to make accurate critical appraisals. Students apply the process of drawing conclusions, finding implications, and making recommendations based on an appraised study. Students learn to judge relative merits of studies in answering particular research questions. Questions of the fit of evidence or theory within an identified agency or institutional setting are explored.

Prerequisites: NRS 509 & NRS 513, or by permission

NRS 519
SYNTHESIS AND USE OF KNOWLEDGE FOR EVIDENCE-BASED PRACTICE
DETAILS
Students will search for and synthesize evidence to answer a PICO question. Major sources of research and best practices guidelines are identified. Students use practice sites to examine theory and strategies to promote change and improve outcomes during the implementation of a recommendation. Elements of evaluation of a) the adoption of innovation and b) the improvement in outcomes are discussed.

Prerequisites: NRS 509, NRS 513, NRS 517, or by permission

IDS 560
INTRODUCTION TO HEALTHCARE INFORMATICS
DETAILS
This course provides an introduction to nursing and healthcare informatics and includes applications of information systems and nursing informatics competencies within the healthcare system. Topics covered include but are not limited to, history and theoretical models of nursing informatics; information systems in clinical settings and the use of information for health systems management; nursing roles; nursing vocabularies and nursing knowledge representing ethical and social issues in healthcare informatics, including HIPAA.

Prerequisites: NRS 509 & NRS 513, or by permission

IDS 562
CONSUMER HEALTH INFORMATICS
DETAILS
Consumer Health Informatics (CHI) is a rapidly-expanding area of informatics practice and focuses on the consumer use of electronic information to guide healthcare outcomes. This course will cover the implementation of strategies and technologies that improve patients, families and the community access to healthcare; CHI applications, health literacy and trends, opportunities and future challenges.

Prerequisites: NRS 509, NRS 513, NRS 560, or by permission

IDS 564
REGULATOR, LEGAL AND ETHICAL ISSUES IN HEALTHCARE INFORMATICS
DETAILS
The utilization of information technology in society has increased the need to ensure privacy and security of patient health information. This course will review regulatory, legal, and ethical philosophies of informatics in healthcare. Topics will include the history and standards of HIPAA; the impact on system implementation, management, and evaluation; and the role of the informaticist in the protection of the patient.

Prerequisites: NRS 509, NRS 513, NRS 560, NRS 562, or by permission

NRS 568
CLINICAL INFORMATION SYSTEMS FOR CLINICAL PRACTICE
DETAILS
The focus of this course is on the role of the nurse in the use of the electronic health record in the clinical practice setting. The selection, implementation, management, and evaluation of healthcare information systems will be explored. Regulatory standards such as HITECH, and review of competencies from ANA and TIGER will be discussed. Other topics include project management; privacy and security standards. Precepted clinical experience (84 clinical hours) allows for practical application of course theory.

Prerequisites: All program course work except NRS 569, NRS 592 and NRS 594, or by permission

NRS 569
PRACTICUM IN NURSING INFORMATICS
DETAILS
During the Practicum in Nursing Informatics, the student will select a preceptor in the field of informatics and complete 126 hours of direct interaction. The student will synthesize clinical applications, roles and competencies of the nurse informaticist and the interface with technology in healthcare. The student must identify a topic for discussion and share the findings and outcomes of the project.

Prerequisites: All program course work except NRS 592 and NRS 594, or by permission

NRS 592
CAPSTONE I
DETAILS
In this first course of the capstone sequence, students will synthesize concepts related to research, practice, education and leadership content as well as experiences learned throughout the master's programs of study. Groups of students will collaboratively begin a group-selected evidence-based project. Emphasis is placed on the process of identifying a nursing problem (PICO [T]), searching and critically appraising the literature with development of a summary matrix table.

Prerequisites: Typically taken in the second-to-last semester, or by permission

NRS 594
CAPSTONE II
DETAILS
In this second course of the capstone sequence, students will synthesize concepts related to research, practice, education and leadership content and experiences learned throughout the master's program of study. Groups of students will collaboratively complete the group-selected evidence-based project begun in NRS 592. Emphasis will be on the process of completing an evidence-based manuscript suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, a poster presentation suitable for delivery at a local, national or regional conference or a webinar presentation.

Prerequisites: Typically taken in the last semester, or by permission

Meet the Faculty

Our nursing faculty are highly experienced and credentialed in their own fields, giving you constant real-world insight you can use. While any instructor can recite from a textbook, ours go a step further and draw from vast personal and professional experiences. Instructors here care as deeply about their students as they do the subject matter and it shows.

Meet the Faculty
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Additional information

MSN Program Outcomes

Graduates of the Master of Science in Nursing will:

  1. Translate and integrate scholarship as a foundation for nursing and healthcare.
    1. Address ethical issues related to scholarship.
    2. Build on clinical expertise focusing on a population of interest.
    3. Demonstrate use of the research process.
    4. Integrate theory and research outcomes into nursing administration, education, informatics or practice.
    5. Contribute to quality improvement and population health by embracing change and innovation through evidence-based nursing and interprofessional collaboration.
  2. Embrace the roles of the nurse educator, executive, or  informaticist to facilitate learning and change.
    1. Develop a personal philosophy as a nurse educator, executive, informaticist, or care coordinator.
    2. Develop the capacity for recognizing and reflecting on problems that fall outside current knowledge.
    3. Serve in the role of educator, executive, informaticist, or care coordinator and role model when working with students, staff, peers, and other constituencies.
    4. Promote critical thinking in those that they educate and serve.
    5. Engage in professional development as a nurse educator, executive, informaticist, or care coordinator.
    6. Foster professional role development through leadership, collaborative skills, and relationship development with peers, students/personnel, clients, colleagues, and members of the interprofessional team.
    7. Model self-reflection and lifelong learning.
    8. Effectively participate in curriculum/program design and evaluation of outcomes.
  3. Value social, political, legal and ethical influences that impact nursing practice and nursing education.
    1. Evaluate the process of ethical decision making.
    2. Apply ethical principles in the role of educator, executive, informaticist, or care coordinator.
    3. Advocate for public policy that promotes and protects the health of the public.
    4. Formulate strategies that respond to policy changes that impact health and education.
    5. Analyze the impact of access on the health of populations.
  4. Appreciate the impact of diversity within nursing and the global community
    1. Examine personal thinking for clarity, objectivity and bias.
    2. Demonstrate behaviors and attitudes that support respect, reciprocal learning, and advocacy related to human differences.
    3. Coach others to improve sensitivity and acceptance of diverse individuals and groups.
    4. Develop culturally competent educational/workplace practices.
  5. Demonstrate competency in developing an effective professional nursing environment.
    1. Analyze the issues related to the use of advanced technology.
    2. Integrate informatics and current and emerging technologies into practice enhancing patient outcomes.
    3. Communicate effectively based on the context of the situation.
    4. Develop networks, collaboratives, partnerships, and interprofessional relationships to enhance nursing's influence within the academic/healthcare community and the broader community.
    5. Develop skills for working within an institution and a system of governance.

Online Technology Requirements

Testimonial

"The online program was extremely accommodating and easy to navigate. It was designed to accommodate a work/life balance as the classes were staggered throughout the length of the program. For example, one class would be in progress for 10 weeks, and the second class would start approximately at week 8 of the first class. There were maybe a few weeks when I took two classes simultaneously, which was challenging; however, most of the program operated in a staircase-like fashion. Brightspace, the online site utilized by NMC to access classes, is extremely easy to navigate and straightforward."

- Dana E., 2021 NMC Graduate

MSN Written Statement

Our goal is for NMC graduate students to articulate and demonstrate growth through written communication, collaboration, and synthesis of knowledge.

Your statement should be substantial and professionally written including the appropriate formatting and grammar. Each response should be two to three paragraphs. When drafting your written statement, please cite any sources using APA format if applicable. Also, know that instances of plagiarism within an applicant's written statement will disqualify them for acceptance to Nebraska Methodist College due to the College's commitment to academic integrity and stringent plagiarism policies.

 

Written Statements should be submitted to: admissions@methodistcollege.edu for review. Should a statement not be to our standards you will be asked to review your work.

The focus for your statement is to address the following questions:

  1. Please describe your future goals as it pertains to your acceptance into the Master of Science in Nursing Program with your specific track in mind (Executive, Educator, Informatics or Care Coordinator). What do you hope to achieve with your new degree?
  2. Here at Nebraska Methodist College, we pride ourselves on teaching "The Meaning of Care," and challenge our students to become educated citizens who create positive and sustainable change in our community and beyond. Describe what you believe will be the change you contribute as a result of earning a Master of Nursing degree from Nebraska Methodist College.
  3. How will you prepare yourself to be successful in an online graduate program?