FNP Schools

FNP Master’s Programs

Mastering the Path to Becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner: A Comprehensive Guide to FNP Nursing Masters Programs

Are you a registered nurse looking to take your career to the next level and make an even greater impact on patients’ lives? Becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) might be the perfect path for you! As an FNP, you’ll have the opportunity to provide comprehensive primary care to patients of all ages, diagnose and treat a wide range of health conditions, and collaborate with other healthcare professionals to ensure the best possible outcomes for your patients.

But how do you get there? The journey to becoming an FNP starts with pursuing an FNP Nursing Masters Program. These programs provide the advanced knowledge and skills you need to excel in this rewarding and challenging role. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about FNP Nursing Masters Programs, from admission requirements to career opportunities and beyond.

What Does an FNP Do?

Before we dive into the details of FNP Nursing Masters Programs, let’s take a closer look at what FNPs do on a daily basis. As advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), FNPs provide a wide range of primary care services to patients of all ages, from infants to the elderly. This includes:

  • Conducting physical exams and health assessments
  • Diagnosing and treating acute and chronic health conditions
  • Prescribing medications and therapies
  • Ordering and interpreting diagnostic tests
  • Educating patients on health promotion and disease prevention
  • Collaborating with other healthcare professionals to develop and implement treatment plans

FNPs often work in primary care clinics, community health centers, hospitals, and private practices, providing ongoing care to patients over time. They play a crucial role in improving access to healthcare, particularly in underserved communities, and helping patients manage chronic conditions and maintain optimal health.

Requirements for FNP Nursing Masters Programs

So, what does it take to get into an FNP Nursing Masters Program? While admission requirements vary by program, here are some of the most common prerequisites:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from an accredited institution
  • Active Registered Nurse (RN) license in good standing
  • Minimum of one to two years of clinical experience as an RN, preferably in a primary care setting
  • Competitive GPA (usually 3.0 or higher)
  • Satisfactory GRE scores (some programs may waive this requirement for experienced nurses)
  • Letters of recommendation from academic or professional references
  • Personal statement outlining your career goals and motivation for pursuing an FNP degree

It’s important to research the specific requirements for each program you’re interested in, as they can vary widely. Some programs may also require prerequisite courses in statistics, research methods, or health assessment, so be sure to plan ahead and complete these courses before applying.

Curriculum Overview

Once you’re accepted into an FNP Nursing Masters Program, you can expect a rigorous and comprehensive curriculum that combines theoretical coursework with hands-on clinical experience. Most programs are designed to be completed in two to three years of full-time study, although part-time options may be available for students who need more flexibility.

The curriculum typically includes core courses in advanced health assessment, pathophysiology, pharmacology, and research methods, which provide the foundational knowledge you need to provide evidence-based care. You’ll also take specialty courses focused on primary care across the lifespan, family health, and health promotion and disease prevention, preparing you to manage common acute and chronic health conditions in patients of all ages.

One of the most exciting and challenging aspects of an FNP Nursing Masters Program is the clinical practicum, where you’ll have the opportunity to work alongside experienced FNPs in various healthcare settings. Most programs require a minimum of 500-600 clinical hours, which can be completed in primary care clinics, community health centers, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities. This hands-on experience is essential for developing the practical skills and clinical judgment you’ll need to excel as an FNP.

Program Formats

FNP Nursing Masters Programs are offered in a variety of formats to meet the needs and preferences of students. Traditional on-campus programs provide face-to-face instruction and opportunities for hands-on learning in simulation labs and clinical settings. Online programs offer flexibility for students who need to balance their education with work and family obligations, with coursework delivered through online learning platforms and virtual simulations.

Hybrid programs combine online coursework with periodic on-campus intensives, providing a balance of flexibility and in-person learning experiences. Regardless of the format you choose, you can expect a rigorous and engaging curriculum that prepares you for the challenges and rewards of being an FNP.

Accreditation and Certification

When choosing an FNP Nursing Masters Program, it’s essential to look for a program that is accredited by a recognized accrediting body, such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). Accreditation ensures that the program meets rigorous standards for nursing education and prepares graduates for certification and licensure.

Upon completing an accredited FNP Nursing Masters Program, you’ll be eligible to sit for national certification exams offered by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) or the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Certification demonstrates your advanced knowledge and competency in family nursing practice and is required for state licensure as an FNP. Each state has its own licensure requirements, which may include additional exams or background checks, so be sure to research the requirements in the state where you plan to practice.

Career Opportunities and Outlook

The demand for FNPs is growing rapidly, driven by factors such as an aging population, increasing prevalence of chronic diseases, and expanding access to healthcare services. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of nurse practitioners is projected to grow 52% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations.

FNPs can work in a variety of healthcare settings, including primary care clinics, community health centers, hospitals, urgent care centers, and private practices. They also earn competitive salaries, with the median annual wage for nurse practitioners being $117,670 as of May 2020. Salaries can vary based on factors such as geographic location, years of experience, and type of employer.

Top FNP Nursing Masters Programs

If you’re ready to take the next step in your nursing career, here are three highly-regarded FNP Nursing Masters Programs to consider:

  1. Duke University School of Nursing
    • Address: 307 Trent Drive, Durham, NC 27710
    • FNP Program Page
    • Description: Duke University’s FNP program is consistently ranked among the top in the nation. The full-time program can be completed in 2 years, with part-time options available. Students benefit from a rigorous curriculum, state-of-the-art simulation labs, and clinical placements in diverse healthcare settings.
  2. University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
    • Address: 418 Curie Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19104
    • FNP Program Page
    • Description: The University of Pennsylvania offers a highly selective FNP program that prepares students for leadership roles in primary care. The full-time program can be completed in 2 years, with a part-time option available for students who wish to continue working while pursuing their degree. The program emphasizes interdisciplinary collaboration and evidence-based practice.
  3. Vanderbilt University School of Nursing
    • Address: 461 21st Ave South, Nashville, TN 37240
    • FNP Program Page
    • Description: Vanderbilt University’s FNP program is known for its innovative curriculum and strong clinical partnerships. The program offers full-time and part-time options, with the ability to complete the degree in as little as 2 years. Students have access to state-of-the-art simulation labs and clinical placements in a variety of healthcare settings.

Financing Your FNP Education

Pursuing an FNP Nursing Masters Program is a significant investment in your future, but there are many options available to help finance your education. Tuition costs vary by program, with public universities typically being more affordable than private institutions. Financial aid options include scholarships, grants, and loans, with many programs offering merit-base

Online FNP Master’s Programs


University of Alaska


Samford University

The University of Alabama in Huntsville

Troy University

Troy University

University of Alabama – Capstone College of Nursing


University of Central Arkansas


Grand Canyon University


University of California – Irvine

  • Campus Dr. and West Peltason Dr. Irvine, CA 92697
    Master’s Programs: Adult & Gerontology NP, FNP
    (949) 824-5011

Samuel Merritt College

  • 3100 Telegraph Ave Oakland, CA 94609
    Master’s Programs: Case Management, CRNA, FNP
    (510) 869-6511

Western University of Health Sciences

California Baptist University

Sonoma State University

  • 1801 East Cotati Ave. Rohnert Park, CA 94928
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (707) 664-2880

California State University at Sacramento


University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

  • 1420 Austin Bluffs Parkway Colorado Springs, CO 80918
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (719) 255-8227

Regis University

Colorado Mesa University

  • 1100 North Avenue Grand Junction, CO 81501
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (970) 248-1020


Sacred Heart University

University of Connecticut

Saint Joseph College


University of Delaware


Florida Atlantic University

University of Miami

Florida Gulf Coast University

  • 10501 FGCU Blvd Fort Myers, FL 33965
    Master’s Programs: CRNA, FNP
    (239) 590-1000

Barry University

University of Central Florida

South University

University of Tampa


Albany State University

Georgia Baptist College of Nursing of Mercer University

Georgia State University

North Georgia College & State University

  • 82 College Circle Dahlonega, GA 30597
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (706) 864-1400

Brenau University

Georgia College & State University

  • 231 W. Hancock St. Milledgeville, GA 31061
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (478) 445-5004

Georgia Southern University

Valdosta State University


Hawaii Pacific University

  • 1164 Bishop Street Honolulu, HI 96813
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (808) 544-0200

Hawaii Pacific University

  • 45-045 Kamehameha Highway Kaneohe, HI 96744
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (808) 544-9313



Olivet Nazarene University

North Park University

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

University of St. Francis

Resurrection University

Saint Anthony College of Nursing

Governors State University


University of St. Francis

  • 2701 Spring Street Fort Wayne, IN 46808
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (260) 399-7999

Goshen College

  • 1700 South Main Street Goshen, IN 46526
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (800) 348-7422

Purdue University-Calumet

University of Indianapolis

Ball State University


Fort Hays State University

Pittsburg State University


Frontier Nursing University

Bellarmine University

Spalding University

  • 845 South Third St. Louisville, KY 40203
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (502) 585-9911

Eastern Kentucky University


Southeastern Louisiana University

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Northwestern State University


Endicott College

Northeastern University

Simmons College

  • 300 The Fenway Boston, MA 02115
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (617) 521-2000

University of Massachusetts

University of Massachusetts

Regis College

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences

  • 19 Foster Street Worcester, MA 01608
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (508) 890-8855


Bowie State University

  • 14000 Jericho Park Road Bowie, MD 20715
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (301) 860-4000


Husson University / EMMC

University of Southern Maine

University of Maine


University of Detroit Mercy

Michigan State University

Oakland University


College of St. Scholastica

Minnesota State University

  • 228 Wiecking Center Mankato, MN 56001
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator

Walden University

Winona State University


Southeast Missouri State University

  • One University Plaza, Ms 7895 Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (573) 651-4900

Graceland University

  • 1401 W. Truman Road Independence, MO 64050
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (816) 833-0524

Cox College

  • 1423 N. Jefferson Ave. Springfield, MO 65802
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (866) 898-5355

St Louis University

University of Missouri-St. Louis


Mississippi University – Women

University of Southern Mississippi

University of Mississippi Medical Center

North Carolina

Gardner-Webb University

Western Carolina University

East Carolina University

University of North Carolina Wilmington

  • 601 S. College Road Wilmington, NC 28403
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nursing Research
    (910) 962-3000

North Dakota

University of Mary

University of North Dakota


Clarkson College

Creighton University

New Hampshire

University of New Hampshire

New Jersey

The College of New Jersey

Fairleigh Dickinson University

Fairleigh Dickinson University

William Paterson University

Monmouth University

New Mexico

University of New Mexico


University of Nevada, Las Vegas

  • 4505 S. Maryland Pkwy. Las Vegas, NV 89154
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (702) 895-3011

University of Nevada-Reno

New York

Lehman College

SUNY Downstate Medical Center

D’Youville College

College of Mt St Vincent

St. John Fisher College

Wagner College

SUNY Upstate Medical University

SUNY Institute of Technology at Utica


The University of Akron

Malone College

  • 2600 Cleveland Ave NW Canton, OH 44709
    Master’s Programs: FNP

Cedarville University

  • 251 N. Main St. Cedarville, OH 45314
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Theology

Xavier University

Mount Carmel College of Nursing

Ursuline College

University of Toledo

The University of Toledo

Otterbein University



Bloomsburg University

DeSales University

Gannon University

Carlow College

Duquesne University

  • 600 Forbes Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15282
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (412) 396-6000

University of Scranton

Villanova University

Rhode Island

University of Rhode Island

South Carolina

Medical University of South Carolina

University of South Carolina

  • University of South Carolina Columbia, SC 29208
    Master’s Programs: Adult & Gerontology NP, FNP
    (803) 777-7000

South Dakota

South Dakota State University


King College

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Tennessee Technological University

Lincoln Memorial University

Union University

Carson-Newman College

  • 2130 Branner Ave. Jefferson City, TN 37760
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (865) 471-2000

East Tennessee State University

University of Memphis

Middle Tennessee State University

Tennessee State University


Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing

West Texas A&M University

  • 2403 Russell Long Blvd. Canyon, TX 79015
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (806) 651-0000

Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi

Texas Woman’s University

Texas Woman’s University

University of Texas-Pan American

  • 1201 W University Drive Edinburg, TX 78539
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (866) 441-8872

University of Texas at El Paso

Texas Technical University Health Sciences Center

  • 4801 Alberta Ave. El Paso, TX 79905
    Master’s Programs: Diabetes Specialist, FNP
    (915) 757-3178

University of Texas Medical Branch

Prairie View A&M University

Angelo State University

University of Texas at Tyler

University of Houston-Victoria

Midwestern State University


Marymount University

  • 2807 North Glebe Road Arlington, VA 22207
    Master’s Programs: FNP
    (703) 522-5600

George Mason University

Hampton University

Old Dominion University

Jefferson College of Health Sciences

Shenandoah University


University of Vermont


Seattle University

Gonzaga University

Pacific Lutheran University


University of Wisconsin

Bellin College

  • 3201 Eaton Road Green Bay, WI 54311
    Master’s Programs: FNP, Nurse Educator
    (920) 433-6699

Viterbo University

Concordia University

West Virginia

West Virginia University

West Virginia University

Wheeling Jesuit University