Best Online Master’s in Nursing Administration Programs

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost % Enrolled Online Location Description
1 George Washington University 70.80 4/5 6% Washington, DC

GW offers one of the nation's best master's in nursing administration online. The school's master's of science in nursing leadership and management program integrates current health care practices with business strategies to provide a curriculum that prepares nurses for leadership roles in a variety of health care facilities. Distance learners, part-time or full-time, can access all of their coursework online. GW admits students into its 36-credit nursing administration program twice a year. In addition to acquiring advanced health care and business knowledge, online students become well-versed in research methods and biostatistics. Available courses include concepts in population health, nursing leadership, and health economics and finance. GW's online programs are approved by the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, which allows students across the nation to partake in the university's distance learning programs. Only a few states have special stipulations, and the university encourages students seeking licensure to contact their state licensing boards for more information.

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2 University of St Francis 70.37 3/5 44% Joliet, IL

USF's online master's of science in nursing (MSN) with a concentration in nursing administration takes a global approach to health care management. Students of the 36-credit program, which they can complete entirely online, gain skills in business, finance, health care law, and advanced nursing strategies. Online courses cover topics like evidence-based health care, ethics, and decision-making. USF delivers its online content using the Canvas Learning Management System (LMS), and discussion forums comprise the bulk of students' online interaction with peers and faculty. To graduate with their online master's in nursing administration, students must complete a four-credit capstone where they plan and implement an initiative to improve the quality of health care.

To be eligible for USF's program, applicants must have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0, two years of full-time nursing practice, and valid registered nurse licensure.

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3 The University of Texas Medical Branch 65.63 3/5 26% Galveston, TX

UTMB specializes in training exceptional health care professionals. The university's 39-credit online master's degree in nursing administration prepares students for ethical leadership roles in a global society. The MSN executive nurse leader program is available fully online, and full-time students can earn the degree in as little as one year. Part-time students typically earn their degree within two years. Sample courses in the program include public health principles in advanced practice nursing, health care economics, and transformational leadership.

Health professionals interested in UTMB's MSN degree must have a bachelor's degree in nursing from an accredited program, an active registered nurse license, and at least one year of experience working as a registered nurse. Other admission requirements include a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and a personal statement. Upon acceptance to the program, students must complete a basic life support course, submit evidence of immunizations, and pass a background check.

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4 University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus 64.32 3/5 21% Denver, CO

CU-Denver's Anschutz Medical Campus delivers an online master's of science in nursing leadership and health care systems, an innovative program that equips students with skills in cultural competence and the ability to compassionately implement appropriate care. The flexible curriculum uses evidence-based practices and information science to provide up-to-date training through a social justice leadership model that encourages community advocacy and health care practices that empower patients. Available courses available include health systems and policy, informatics, and theory in nursing. CU-Denver's 30-credit, online master's degree in nursing administration prepares students for the university's health systems doctorate program. Graduates leave with valuable skills in advanced research methods that will assist them both academically and professionally. Distance learners in the program all pay the same tuition rate, regardless of their state of residence. CU-Denver provides scholarships and other financial aid options to its graduate students.

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5 Clarkson College 62.93 4/5 86% Omaha, NE

Located in Omaha, Nebraska, Clarkson offers a master's of science in nursing health care administration for registered nurses who want to transition into professional leadership roles within the health care industry. The 42-credit program is available fully online, and students typically earn their degree within three years. Clarkson requires students to complete 21 credits in core nursing courses, such as nursing law and ethics, essentials of scholarly writing, and applied statistics. The online program emphasizes the development of leadership and planning skills, theoretical and practical health care knowledge, and workforce policies and procedures critical to the development and implementation of health care delivery systems.

Applicants to Clarkson's master's in nursing administration online should have a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and should submit transcripts, evidence of valid registered nurse licensure, a resume, a scholarly essay, and two letters of recommendation with their online application.

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6 Sacred Heart University 61.91 5/5 26% Fairfield, CT

Sacred Heart's MSN in nursing management & executive leadership is a 36-credit program featuring a practicum experience where students complete 120 clinical hours in an approved health care setting. Examples of online courses in this online master's in nursing administration include evidence-based practice for quality care, health care information systems, and management of financial resources. Students can finish the convenient online program, with consecutive, eight-week course sessions, in two years. Sacred Heart offers six start dates for the degree, and delivers courses asynchronously through the Blackboard LMS.

To be eligible for admission to the master's in nursing management, applicants should have a bachelor's degree with at least a 3.0 GPA, a resume, two letters of recommendation, a professional goals statement, unencumbered registered nurse licensure, and proof of malpractice insurance. Those applying online must pay a nonrefundable $50 fee.

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7 Stony Brook University 60.99 3/5 6% Stony Brook, NY

A leader in online education since 1996, Stony Brook delivers a 36-credit online master's degree in nursing administration that uses a primarily asynchronous format. The program boasts flexibility, appealing to busy registered nurses who want to advance professionally, by allowing students to fulfill select on-site requirements using videoconferencing. The curriculum equips students with the theoretical knowledge and evidence-based training necessary to successfully implement ethical health care practices that meet community needs. Sample courses include applications in clinical nursing research, finance and economics in nursing leadership, and communication and relationship management.

Applicants must have a bachelor's degree in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in addition to at least one year of relevant work experience. Those who have a bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing must submit a clinical practice portfolio to evidence their nursing competencies. These applicants must also pay a $300 clinical practice portfolio fee.

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8 Seton Hall University 58.96 4/5 11% South Orange, NJ

Seton Hall's MSN in health systems administration with case management integrates contemporary nursing and business theories to prepare registered nurses for leadership roles in diverse settings. Graduates of the 30-credit program, which students can complete entirely online, are skilled in financial management and organizational administration. The curriculum familiarizes students with evidenced-based research practices, legal issues in health care management, and managed care systems, among other topics. The case management focus equips students with the skills necessary to develop and implement health care programs that provide patients with the best services available. Available courses include forces of health care, theoretical basis of nursing, and nursing research. Full-time students can complete Seton Hall's online master's in nursing administration program in 24 months.

Admission requirements for this master's program include an undergraduate degree in nursing, professional nursing licensure, a personal statement, and two letters of recommendation.

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9 Nova Southeastern University 58.83 4/5 49% Fort Lauderdale, FL

Located in Fort Lauderdale, NSU is a private, nonprofit university that features a MSN in health systems leadership designed for registered nurses who hold a bachelor's degree. The 36-credit program, which students can complete entirely online, consists of 15 credits of core nursing courses and 21 credits of health systems leadership courses that emphasize decision-making, leadership roles, and business and economics in a health care setting. Sample course topics include health care policy and foundations for clinical decision-making.

To be eligible for NSU's master's in nursing administration online programs, applicants must be registered nurses holding active licensure. If a prospective student's bachelor's degree is in a field other than nursing, they can become eligible by completing an advanced nursing transitional course, available at NSU in the fall semester. Application deadlines for fall and winter admission are August 1 and December 1, respectively.

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10 Lewis University 58.75 3/5 25% Romeoville, IL

Lewis is a liberal arts Catholic college located in Romeoville, Illinois. The university's MSN in health care systems leadership prepares registered nurses for administrative roles in a variety of health care settings. The program's 42-credit curriculum emphasizes the integration of compassionate care with cutting-edge strategies and technologies to provide an exceptional patient experience. Students of the online program complete seven core nursing courses and two specialty core courses in financial management and health care leadership. In addition, students must enroll in five specialty courses, in areas like business skills and evidence-based performance. To graduate, online nursing students must fulfill a capstone requirement that provides them with the opportunity to apply acquired skills in a health care environment. The experiential learning component of Lewis' online master's in nursing administration ensures that graduates are prepared for the rigors of the career in practice.

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11 Carlow University 58.08 3/5 25% Pittsburgh, PA

Carlow reaches beyond its campus in Pittsburgh to offer registered nurses across the nation the opportunity to advance their careers through its online MSN in nursing, education, and leadership. A 33-credit degree with no in-person requirements, Carlow's program equips students with the skills necessary to fill vital leadership roles in nursing administration, clinical practice, and academia. The curriculum, emphasizing ethical conduct and professional collaboration, covers topics like evidence-based practices, leadership styles, and nursing leadership theories and strategies. To graduate, nursing students must participate in an internship experience. Full-time students can earn their online master's degree in nursing administration from Carlow in less than two years.

To be eligible for the program, students must possess a bachelor's degree in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and active registered nurse licensure. Carlow offers a variety of scholarships and grants, including two graduate scholarships exclusively for nursing students.

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12 Regis University 57.73 4/5 49% Denver, CO

Regis delivers a master's of science in nursing leadership, through its prestigious Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions, that prepares registered nurses for rewarding careers at colleges, hospitals, and community health agencies. The 42-credit online program includes courses in ethics for nurse leaders, health care policy, and advanced health assessment. Integrating leadership and nursing theories with business models and family care strategies, Regis delivers a holistic, patient-centered degree for the nation's next generation of advanced practice nurses.

The master's in nursing administration online program, which has no in-person requirements, takes approximately 2 ½ years to complete, and distance learners have up to 5 years to complete the program. Regis structures the program's courses in eight-week terms and delivers course material asynchronously. Application requirements include three letters of recommendation, official transcripts, a current resume, and a personal statement.

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13 Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health 57.62 3/5 31% Omaha, NE

NMC's MSN nurse executive degree prepares students for critical leadership roles in the rapidly evolving health care industry. The online curriculum, which distance learners typically complete in 21 months, includes courses on organizational behavior and structure, the role of the nurse executive, and statistics. The 36-credit online program includes two capstone experiences: the first requires students to work with peers to develop an evidence-based project identifying an issue in nursing, while the second requires students to write a collaborative research paper addressing the issue identified in the first project. NMC's master's in nursing administration online also includes a 126-hour practicum.

To be eligible for admission, applicants should have earned a bachelor's degree in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and have unencumbered licensure as a registered nurse. Other admission requirements include a resume, official transcripts, and an essay. NMC does not require applicants to take the GRE.

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14 Indiana Wesleyan University-Marion 56.88 4/5 59% Marion, IN

The largest private college in the state, IWU-Marion delivers an online master's degree in nursing administration that offers registered nurses the opportunity to pursue academic and professional goals without ever stepping foot on campus. The flexible format of the program, which admits students semi-annually, allows distance learners to complete their degree in less than three years. Online students are part of a cohort, where peer interaction and support make distance learning a collaborative, engaging experience. The 41-credit program boasts experienced instructors who strive to promote student success and adhere to the university's Christian principles. The curriculum integrates advanced nursing practices with organizational theories to prepare students for leadership roles in a variety of health care settings. Examples of courses in this online master's in nursing administration include biostatistics and epidemiology, management of health care delivery systems, and organizational behavior. Students must earn their degree within four years of enrollment.

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15 University of Mary 55.82 3/5 48% Bismarck, ND

A Christian college located in Bismarck, North Dakota, Mary offers an BSN to MSN online degree program in nursing leadership and management for registered nurses with active, unencumbered licensure and an undergraduate degree in nursing with a minimum GPA of 2.75. The online curriculum emphasizes the synthesis of advanced nursing techniques and evidence-based approaches to organizational leadership. Courses on topics like human resource management, influential nursing leadership, and health care law and policy prepare nurses for managerial roles in the health care industry. Mary's 36-credit master's in nursing administration online requires distance learners to complete two seminar service projects in addition to 500 hours of field experience. The university offers several financial aid options, including nursing and health care scholarships.

Admission requirements include two letters of reference, a goal statement, and a criminal background check.

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16 Saint Joseph's College of Maine 54.65 4/5 50% Standish, ME

SJC of Maine is a leader in distance learning, delivering a 45-credit online master's in nursing administration designed for registered nurses who have undergraduate degrees in the field. In addition to core coursework on topics like informatics, ethics, and public policy, students of the online program complete a capstone project and a 135-hour practicum experience. Areas of faculty expertise include critical care, geriatrics, and family medicine. SJC of Maine offers its online courses in 12-week terms, four times a year. Registered nurses with a bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing have the opportunity to pursue an advanced degree through the college's RN to MSN fast track program.

Students can earn their online master's degree in nursing administration from SJC-Maine without on-campus residency. The college provides services online for distance learners, including academic advising and technical support. Graduates leave the nursing master's program with the critical thinking skills necessary for success as leaders in the field.

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17 Western Governors University 54.39 3/5 100% Salt Lake City, UT

Located in Salt Lake City, WGU has provided distance education since its establishment in 1995. The university's 150-credit online master's of science in nursing leadership and management is designed for registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma in nursing who want to earn a bachelor's and graduate degree in one convenient program. Almost any student who is already licensed as a registered nurse can transfer 50 to 90 credits towards their degree and significantly decrease the time it will take to complete.

Students dedicate around 15 hours a week to their studies and typically earn their degree within 2.5 years. The program, which emphasizes competency-based education, features several innovative courses that are pertinent to modern global health care issues, such as health and wellness through nutritional science and care of the older adult. WGU's flexible online program requires students to complete a capstone project and a practicum experience. Students can work with a faculty mentor to develop an individualized program of study for their online master's in nursing administration.

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18 Northwest Nazarene University 54.30 4/5 21% Nampa, ID

NNU delivers a master's in nursing administration online program for registered nurses with or without a bachelor's degree. Those with an undergraduate degree in the field can complete the university's 36-credit, fully online MSN with an emphasis in leadership and education in two years; those without a bachelor's degree typically complete the program in three years. The online curriculum equips students with the knowledge and skills required for leadership roles at health care facilities, academic institutions, and community agencies. The program reflects NNU's Christian roots, and online students engage in coursework that promotes spiritual growth as well as advanced nursing skills and organizational knowledge.

Distance learners take courses consecutively in five-week sessions, dedicating at least 12 hours per week to their studies. Graduates of the nursing program are ethical leaders who value community advocacy and evidenced-based practices.

NNU allows admitted students to transfer up to 25% of graduate-level credits earned within the previous five years towards their master's online.

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19 Kennesaw State University 53.21 3/5 27% Kennesaw, GA

KSU's online MSN in advanced care management and leadership is a 40-credit, 15-month program specifically developed for registered nurses in the state of Georgia. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have an undergraduate degree in nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in addition to active registered nurse licensure for the state of Georgia. Other admission requirements include two letters of recommendation and GRE scores. The university allows students to transfer up to nine credits toward their degree.

Students in this master's in nursing administration online program are required to come to KSU's campus once or twice per semester. The nursing administration and transformational leadership track emphasizes evidence-based practical skills training, with online courses focusing on areas like ethical decision-making and conflict management. Graduates of the program are well-versed in advanced nursing theories and organizational leadership strategies.

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20 Pennsylvania State University-World Campus 52.54 4/5 100% University Park, PA

Penn State-World Campus features an online master's in nursing administration for registered nurses who want to advance professionally without having to set foot on campus. The 37-credit curriculum, designed as a precursor to national certification, prepares students for a variety of leadership roles like nurse executive, chief nursing officer, and health care consultant. Available to any registered nurse with U.S. licensure and a bachelor's degree in nursing, the program includes three core courses that explore theoretical foundations of nursing and research. Additionally, the curriculum features courses on topics like health care economics, human resource and workforce issues, and leadership concepts. To graduate, students must pass a criminal background check before completing a 180-hour clinical practicum and a three-credit capstone project. The application deadline for summer/fall admission is February 15, while those seeking admission for the spring semester must have their application materials in by September 15.

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21 Winona State University 52.33 3/5 16% Winona, MN

WSU offers an innovative online master's of science in nursing and organizational leadership that equips registered nurses with diverse skill sets and prepares them for leadership roles in a variety of health care settings. Students typically complete the fully online, 43-credit program, including two practicum experiences totaling 420 clinical hours, within two or three years. Boasting a diverse faculty with clinical experience in numerous areas, the program features a curriculum that interweaves advanced nursing theories, managerial strategies, and scholarly research. Sample courses include quality health care delivery, scientific and ethical foundations, and statistical methods for health care. To be eligible for WSU's online master's in nursing administration, applicants must have a bachelor's degree in nursing with coursework in physical assessment, nursing research, and statistics. Other admission requirements include a minimum GPA of 3.0, a statement of professional goals, and three letters of recommendation.

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22 The University of Texas at Arlington 52.25 3/5 27% Arlington, TX

UT-Arlington's master's in nursing administration online is a flexible program that typically takes 18-20 months to complete. The university delivers its rigorous curriculum in a blended format, featuring distance learning and supervised clinical field experience at Texas partner hospitals. Following a designated course sequence, distance learners pursuing their master's of science in nursing administration online complete 12 courses that are five to 10 weeks in length. The 30-credit curriculum features courses on topics like financial management in nursing, evidence-based practice, and nursing informatics. Examples of online electives include curriculum development and evaluation and teaching/learning theories and strategies.

Prospective students interested in the program should have a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution along with an unencumbered registered nurse license. This online program is currently not available to students who reside in Alabama, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, or Washington.

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23 The University of Texas at Tyler 51.76 3/5 61% Tyler, TX

UT-Tyler recognizes the health care industry as an evolving field with dynamic demands. Nurse administrators have the opportunity to fill vital leadership roles and provide direction for the future trends in quality health care. The university's 36-credit, online master's degree in nursing administration, which has no mandatory in-person components, endows students with the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully oversee health care organizations. Experienced faculty members, who interact with students via instant messaging, videoconferencing, and email, provide quality online instruction and academic support. Additionally, UT-Tyler's engaging online coursework provides students with ample opportunity for collaboration and meaningful peer interaction. The program's curriculum focuses on three key areas: health care leadership, business management, and delivery of care. Students enrolled in the program complete a 112-hour practicum, where they benefit from hands-on experience. Admission requirements include an essay, a resume, and three letters of recommendation.

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24 Saint Xavier University 51.23 3/5 4% Chicago, IL

SXU's online MSN in executive leadership allows students to advance professionally and positively impact the health care industry by filling a key niche among medical professions. The program's dual emphasis on advanced nursing practices and business skills prepares students for rewarding careers as unit directors, nurse managers, chief nursing executives, and more. SXU's 35-credit master's in nursing administration online includes 18 credits of core courses and 17 credits of specialty courses. Core courses focus on several key topics, including theoretical approaches to advanced nursing, working with diverse populations, and the American health care system and financing. The specialty courses, covering subjects like advanced health care finance and advanced health and social policy, closely examine the nature of administrative leadership in nursing. To graduate, students complete a capstone experience that requires them to work with faculty in developing a project that incorporates their career interests at a practicum site.

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25 Texas Woman's University 50.90 3/5 53% Denton, TX

With locations in Denton, Houston, and Dallas, TWU is the largest university geared toward women in the nation. The school's online master's in nursing health systems management, with a minor in health care administration, emphasizes collaboration and professional advocacy. A 42-credit degree, the program integrates theories of nursing, business, and management to provide students with a comprehensive approach to nursing leadership. As they earn their degree, online students learn how to use knowledge of health care policies and data analysis to implement appropriate organizational strategies. The program, 50% of which students complete at TWU's Houston campus and 50% of which students complete online through the Blackboard LMS, includes three 90-hour practicum experiences that focus on organizational, fiscal, and outcome assessment.

Applicants to TWU's online master's in nursing administration must submit evidence of professional liability insurance and licensure. Application deadlines for fall and spring are May 1 and September 15, respectively.

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