What is an Advanced Practice Nurse?

Advance Nursing Practice is education beyond the basic baccalaureate nursing education and most often is certified by a nationally recognized professional organization in a nursing specialty, or meeting other criteria established by a Board of Nursing.

 Advanced Practice Nurse  (APN) is a registered nurse with specialty training and education. Designations recognized as advanced practice nursing include, nurse practitioner, certified nurse-midwife, certified registered nurse anesthetist, clinical nurse specialist. APNs help meet the demand for primary and specialty healthcare practitioners, especially in rural and other underserved areas. All APNs must be educationally prepared to assume responsibility and accountability for health promotion and/or maintenance as well as the assessment, diagnosis and management of patient problems, which includes the use and prescription of pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic interventions whether or not an APN later chooses to gain prescriptive authority (AACN, 2012).

1. Adult-gerontology Nurse Practitioner: The population focus of adult-gerontology encompasses the care of the young adult to the older adult, including the frail elderly.

2. Family Nurse Practitioner: The population focus of family encompasses the care of individuals and families across the lifespan.

3. Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: The population focus of family psychiatric mental health encompasses the mental health care needs of individuals and families across the lifespan.

The Advance Practice Nursing program is part of the School of Nursing within the College of Nursing and Health Sciences.   Students have access to state of the art clinical and scientific laboratories while pursuing their degree.  The program is located on the fourth floor of the Health Sciences and Business Administration (HSBA) building on the VSU north campus, across from South Georgia Medical Center. 

Faculty members, within the School of Nursing, are very active professionally with service and professional presentations occurring at the state, regional, national and international level.  Students have the opportunity to engage and train with faculty while completing their practicum experiences. Faculty are committed to effective teaching and student service for the purpose of preparing graduates for the workplace and to further their education at the level of post-graduate  and doctoral studies.  

Once students complete the MSN program they are able to take the national board certification examination. Once students are successful and pass the certification exam they are awarded the credential to practice in a primary care setting.  

The Valdosta State University Masters in Nursing is accredited by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing/College of Collegiate Nursing education (CCNE). The Accreditation Standards are the minimum standards of quality used in accrediting educational programs that prepare individuals to enter the advance practice nursing profession.

Admission into the Master’s in Nursing (MSN) program is competitive.  It is the student’s responsibility to follow the admission requirements for the Nursing program in the graduate catalog each year and to frequently visit the program website for any new admission or curriculum updates. Students must submit their admission application online before the designated deadline date as instructed and as specified on the program website.  The programs are designed for student success assuming that students begin the admissions process and matriculate through the program under the designed curriculum structure.  The curriculum involves a structured and in-depth academic component, as well as, a diverse practicum experience component.