Be Prepared to Train Nurses and Make an Impact on the Future of Healthcare
Utilize your nursing knowledge, experience, and MSN degree to pursue additional nursing credentials that will allow you to progress in your career. Move forward on your career path with the help of a post-master's degree certificate in nursing that opens the doors to new opportunities.
As a nurse educator, you will demonstrate a professional presence by helping nursing students acquire the knowledge, skills and competencies to work effectively in inter-professional teams across a variety of academic and healthcare settings.
Don't have an MSN? No problem! Check out the RN-to-MSN or the BSN-to-MSN nursing education degree programs offered by WGU.
Expected time to completion
The program consists of 16 competency units and is paced to be completed in two six-month terms.
Tuition per six-month term is
Tuition charged per term—rather than per credit—helps students control the ultimate cost of their degrees. Finish faster, pay less!
Graduates who recommend WGU:
The vast majority of alumni say WGU delivered on its promises. In fact, over 50% of students found WGU thanks to a friend's recommendation.
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COURSES & COMPETENCIES
Nurse Educator Courses
The Nursing Education competencies in this program were derived from the National League for Nursing Nurse Educator standards and the Master’s Essentials for Professional Nursing practice. The nurse educator specialization will cover topics such as curriculum development, learning styles, assessment, and more.
Every course focuses on a set of clearly defined competencies that you must prove you’ve learned—through tests, papers, projects, or other assessments. Demonstrating mastery is how you pass a course, so learning what it takes to be outstanding in your career is at the heart of WGU’s Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing–Education curriculum. That means the things you master at WGU are often directly applicable the next day at work—and it means what you’re doing at work frequently informs the work you’re doing in your courses. It’s all about real-world applicability so every moment spent studying is time well spent.
The Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing – Education consists of the courses listed below. You will typically complete one at a time as you make your way through your program, working with your Program Mentor each term to build your personalized Certificate Plan. You’ll work through each course as quickly as you can study and learn the material. As soon as you’re ready, you'll take your assessment, and once you pass, you'll complete the course and move on. This means you can finish as many courses as you're able in a term at no additional cost.
Evolving Roles of Nurse Educators in Diverse Environments examines the multidimensional roles of a contemporary academic nurse educator. This course explores the roles and responsibilities of the nurse educator as a teacher, leader, change agent, and curriculum innovator. Students will also examine the importance of personal and professional development by developing strategies that promote academic integrity, cultural sensitivity, social justice, and ethical/legal values in diverse environments. The course emphasizes the responsibility of nurse educators to utilize communication, collaboration, and leadership in mitigating challenges in academic nursing education.
Facilitation of Context-Based Student-Centered Learning explores how the nurse educator will incorporate authentic experiences into the creation of course plans that facilitate scholarly inquiry, collaboration, and knowledge acquisition in varied educational environments. Emphasis is placed on innovative, transformational, and experiential teaching and learning strategies to facilitate student development of professional, context-based nursing principles, knowledge, skills, and behavior. Evolving Roles of Nurse Educators in Diverse Environments is a prerequisite to this course.
Contemporary Curriculum Design and Development in Nursing Education analyzes the concepts of creating curriculum based on national nursing accreditation standards and instructional design best practices. Nurse educator students will create course content that supports learning in diverse, real-world environments where nurse educators facilitate learning. Instructional design strategies for delivering course content will reflect the mission of academic institution programs, contemporary trends in nursing education, and the needs of key stakeholders in nursing education and practice. Facilitation of Context-Based Student-Centered Learning is a prerequisite to this course.
Assessment and Evaluation Strategies for Measuring Student Learning addresses the academic nurse educator's role in the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of student achievement outcomes in nursing education programs. This course requires students to integrate best practices from nursing theory and theories of learning to assess student learning in diverse educational settings. Topics include validity, reliability, and practicality of assessments, interpreting item difficulty and discrimination test results, and analyzing student achievement and learning outcomes data. This course has no prerequisites.
Emerging Trends and Challenges in 21st Century Nursing Education analyzes the emerging trends, technologies, and challenges that academic nurse educators encounter when facilitating learning in diverse healthcare settings. Students will focus on the necessity of interprofessional collaboration and the barriers and facilitators to overcoming the challenges associated with teaching and learning in nursing. Topics include the impact of emerging technology, challenges in nursing practice, and the role of the academic nurse educator as a scholar and a nursing education policy advocate. This course has no prerequisites.
The Nursing Education Field Experience provides the nurse educator student with clinical practice experiences with the opportunity to advance knowledge and expertise in a clinical area of practice and reflect on those experiences as they relate to the nurse educator role. Students demonstrate advanced clinical competence within a selected patient population that connect the four spheres of care identified by AACN The Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing Education (2021) (e.g., Wellness/Disease Prevention; Chronic Disease Management, Regenerative/ Restorative Care, and Hospice/Palliative Care). Students also analyze the need-gap for a curriculum change, innovation, or improvement. Based on the identified need-gap, the student will begin the design and development of a course module or unit that reflects evidence-based instructional design and assessment principles and practices. This course prepares the nurse educator student with advanced clinical competence which lays the foundation of clinical relevance when they support student learning as a Nurse Educator. This course is eligible for an In Progress grade. Please see the Grading Scale Policy for more information.
The Nursing Education Capstone course provides the Nurse Educator student an opportunity to apply previous course work towards the completion of an evidence-based curriculum proposal project. During this course students will build on previous work during their Nursing Education Field Experience course by planning the implementation and evaluation phases of their proposed curriculum change, innovation or improvement. The capstone project represents a synthesis of competencies across the Masters Science of Nursing—Nursing Education degree program, which prepares them to lead, manage, and transform nursing education in diverse and complex settings. This course is eligible for an In Progress grade. Please see the Grading Scale Policy for more information.
The learner will explore professional communication by applying the principles of academic writing to their discipline. Learners will incorporate these skills into the development of an evidence-based scholarly paper in their specialty area. As learners develop a scholarly paper, they will acquire a deeper understanding of the research topic selected and analyze whether initiatives and interventions have been effective or ineffective.
This program consists of 8 courses
At WGU, we design our curriculum to be timely, relevant, and practical—all to help you show that you know your stuff.
Special requirements for this program
While most of your coursework will be completed online, your nursing program includes some requirements—including field experiences—that must be completed in a facility near you. And while most of your courses can be accelerated based on your prior knowledge and hard work, some nursing programs begin with a cohort-based course that must be completed via five scheduled webcam sessions with faculty and fellow students.
“Enrollment was perfectly easy for me. I was able to submit online and somebody called me within a day to start the whole process. Within two or three weeks I was ready to go for my first term.”
M.S. Nursing – Education
Top accreditations mean that your certificate is respected by employers and peers. You will get a quality education that is valuable in the industry with this nursing education program.
On Your Schedule
You can continue working at your full-time job or maintaining your responsibilities while earning your nursing education post-master's credential. You don't have to log in to classes and there aren't due dates. You are in charge of your program.
When you enroll in the nursing education certificate program at WGU, you join an impressive network of healthcare professionals. Over 18,000 students earned healthcare degrees from WGU in 2020 alone, and are hard at work, changing the lives of patients and impacting communities.
One important measure of a degree’s value is the reputation of the university where it was earned. When employers, industry leaders, and academic experts hold your alma mater in high esteem, you reap the benefits of that respect. WGU is a pioneer in reinventing higher education for the 21st century, and our quality has been recognized.
COST & TIME
An Affordable Nursing Education Certificate
By charging per term rather than per credit—and empowering students to accelerate through material they know well or learn quickly—WGU helps students control the ultimate cost of their programs. The faster you complete your program, the less you pay for your degree.
A Nursing Certificate Is Within Reach
There is help available to make paying for school possible for you:
The average student loan debt of WGU graduates in 2022 (among those who borrowed) was less than half* the national average.
*WGU undergraduate students have approximately half the debt at graduation compared to the national average, according to the Institute for College Access and Success (2022).
Most WGU students qualify for financial aid, and WGU is approved for federal financial aid and U.S. veterans benefits.
Make your post-master's certificate more affordable with a $2,500 Beyond the Bedside Grant.
A Certificate in Nursing Education Designed to Be Earned on a Nurse's Schedule
Competency-based education puts working nurses in the driver’s seat of their education. As a busy nurse, you need a certificate program that's more than simply online—you need one that truly reflects the realities of your work life and experience. At WGU, your progress is driven by your ability to prove what you’ve learned. How quickly is largely up to you. Once you’ve mastered the defined competencies (knowledge and skills), you prove what you know through tests, papers, projects, or other assessments. Demonstrating mastery is how you pass a course, so learning what it takes to be outstanding in your career is at the heart of WGU’s curriculum.
Other online certificate programs may give you the convenience of distance learning; WGU's competency-based online programs take that flexibility further—many steps further!
"WGU is a great option for nurses who are looking to advance their careers but need further education and flexibility to do so.”
M.S. Nursing – Education (RN to MSN)
Real Results for Your Career in Nursing Education
Once you have completed your Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing–Education you will have the knowledge and skills to be an outstanding nurse educator. You'll be in demand, because you'll be prepared to translate your extensive nursing knowledge into learning opportunities for other nurses.
Nurse educators teach and train nurses, nursing students, schoolchildren, community groups, workers, patients, and consumers. A post-master's certificate can prepare you to make a difference in a wide variety of settings, including:
- Community agencies.
- Industry and businesses.
- Nursing programs.
Nursing instructors at colleges, universities, or professional schools make over $84,000 on average, according to recent statistics.
—U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Nursing Education Leaders Are Thriving in Diverse Careers
Given the growing nurse educator shortage, earning your certificate in nursing education is both a rewarding decision and a solid career move. Once you master subjects like curriculum development, instruction and evaluation, and current technology in nursing education, your role in nursing can take on a whole new dimension. Our 3,000-plus nursing education alumni have great jobs and satisfying careers:
- Nurse educator
- Nursing faculty
- Program director
- Academic clinical nurse educator
- Hospitals and healthcare clinics
- Colleges and universities
- Healthcare networks
- Law enforcement and corrections
- Hospice providers
- Healthcare Corp. of America
- Purdue University
- University of Utah
- Hospice Care of California
WGU Grads Hold Positions With Top Employers
Hospitals and clinics around the country know the benefit of a credential from WGU, so your nursing certificate is valuable.
Admissions Requirements Unique to This Program
To be considered for this post-master's certificate program in nursing, you must:
- Possess an M.S. in Nursing from an accredited institution or state board of nursing approved program.
- Possess an active, unencumbered RN license in your state of residence, or your state of employment. (Some license holders may be granted a waiver if they are not licensed in their state of residence or employment.) You must be licensed in the state in which you will complete your clinical experience.
Safety Notice: WGU and the College of Health Professions (CHP) are committed to the health, safety, and well-being of all patients, community members, and key stakeholders that interact with WGU students at various clinical/host sites. Interactions might include direct patient interaction, observation experiences, laboratory experiences, project development, or conducting research. Standard compliance verification for students in applicable CHP programs is required to protect the public, meet CHP program expectations, reasonably assure compliance with state regulatory board requirements, meet WGU’s contractual and legal obligations with clinical partners, and support WGU’s mission to prepare students who will be qualified to enter their desired field. Compliance items may include, but are not limited to, background checks, immunizations, and drug screens as needed.
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More About the Nursing Education Certificate
- General Program Questions
- Financial Aid Questions
In order to be eligible for this certificate program, you must be a registered nurse with an active, unencumbered RN license and hold a MSN degree from an accredited program.
Yes! WGU does offer scholarship opportunities for students in post-master's certificate programs.
As a nonprofit university, WGU doesn’t need to benefit shareholders. Our students are our only focus. We also try to keep our operating costs low. And since we’re an exclusively online university, we don’t need to maintain expensive classroom buildings, a campus, or other nonacademic programs.
A post-master's certificate in nursing is a great option for MSN graduates who are looking to change the trajectory of their careers. For example, MSN-educated nurses who want to become a clinical instructor can benefit from a post-master's certificate in nursing education.
The $65 application fee is waived for Per Scholas alumni and employees. Use the waiver code "PERSCHOLAS".
All Per Scholas alumni and employees will receive a 5% discount on tuition by communicating with your Enrollment Counselor that you are a Per Scholas alumni.
Per Scholas and WGU are actively working to secure scholarships for Per Scholas alumni. See general WGU scholarships here. Per Scholas employees should inquire about tuition benefits packages within their company’s Human Resources department.
If you carry debt from any previous college or defaulted student loans, this does not necessarily preclude you from enrolling at WGU. Speak to an Enrollment Counselor at WGU about financial considerations as you move forward with your application.
There is a one-time program fee and resource fee that students pay upon enrollment at WGU. There are no additional book or lab fees associated with the courses. Students will need to have stable internet access in order to do the coursework. Please refer to the applicable WGU program page for more information.
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