Master of Science: Nursing Informatics

Nursing informatics is a vital nursing specialty for 21st-century health care delivery. Nursing informatics integrates the latest best practices in nursing, computer, cognitive, and information sciences to provide patients with the highest level of care and improve information management across health care organizations of all sizes.

There is a growing need for registered nurses with advanced degrees and board certifications in nursing informatics. If you want to be on the front line of data management and health care technology, and are ready to expand your career possibilities, Wilkes University’s online 39-credit Nursing Informatics Master of Science concentration may be right for you.

For working registered nurses, the Nursing Informatics MSN program from Wilkes is the ideal way to earn an advanced degree as you keep your current job. The traditional Nursing Informatics MSN online coursework progression takes just 26 months to complete. We also offer an accelerated option – qualified, accepted students can take concurrent courses and earn their MSN degree in less than 20 months, fully online (plus on-ground clinical work).

Core coursework provides Wilkes Nursing students with a solid foundation of academic and clinical study. Nursing Informatics concentration courses offer the in-depth knowledge and professional development skills needed to master this constantly evolving field. A final scholarly review course allows students to synthesize and review issues relevant to the Nursing Informatics concentration and prepares graduates to take the national certification exam.

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Student Learning Outcomes

In addition to meeting all the objectives and requirements for the Master of Science in Nursing online degree program, successful Nursing Informatics candidates will also be able to:

  • Discuss the role of the informatics nurse specialist for advancing nursing practice
  • Apply informatics nurse specialist competencies as a nursing leader of a health care organization and interprofessional teams
  • Integrate nursing knowledge and technology for improving patient quality of care
  • Demonstrate an ability to incorporate data analysis and management techniques for achieving efficiency and quality in health care organizations
 

Nurse Informatics Courses

Wilkes University’s Nursing Informatics concentration is a 39 credit-hour online program and will result in a Master of Science in Nursing degree.

With scheduled breaks, the traditional Nursing Informatics MSN program can be completed fully online in 26 months based on a one-course-at-a-time progression. Our accelerated option allows qualified, accepted students to take concurrent courses (as indicated in the course sequences), and earn this MSN degree fully online in less than 20 months.

The Nursing Informatics curriculum is comprised of the following courses. Please note that NSG 590 will be the last class taken in the Nursing Informatics sequence. Also note all students will be required to complete a background check/clinical clearance process prior to beginning their first clinical course. (See Admission section for more information).

Graduate Nursing Core Courses
24 credits
NSG 500 (3)
Advanced Health Assessment
This course presents an overview of the full and comprehensive health assessment of patients across the life span. Emphasis on multiple aspects of assessment including physical, functional, and mental health assessment along with transcultural variations, will prepare the student for advanced practice nursing. (Nurse Practitioner students are required to complete an onsite residency).
NSG 501 (3)
Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Science
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 502)
This course emphasizes the systematic process of theory development in nursing. The role of traditional science in relation to other ways of knowing is explored. Students will describe, analyze, and evaluate current theories of nursing. The relationship of research and practice to theory is discussed.
NSG 502 (3)
Advanced Nursing Research
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 501)
This course builds on knowledge and skills developed in undergraduate research and statistics courses. Skills in the analysis and evaluation of nursing research are further developed. Students analyze the contributions of the empirical approach to the development of nursing science. Selected research designs and methodologies which are used to advance nursing knowledge are examined. Students are given the opportunity to critique and synthesize current research for its application to an identified problem in nursing practice.  
NSG 504 (3)
Advanced Role Development in Nursing

(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 505)
This course examines the development of roles for advancing nursing practice. The historical development of these roles along with current scope of practice in a variety of clinical settings will be explored. Focus will be placed on the legal, historical, political, social, and ethical aspects of advanced practice nursing.

NSG 505 (3)
Health Policy and Politics for Advancing Nursing Practice
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 504)
Complex and continuous changes in healthcare environments require that nursing professionals contribute to care delivery systems for improving population health outcomes. This course focuses on the role of the nurse advancing nursing practice through developing health policy, politics, and advocacy systems. Approaches to health issues for shaping policy on a local, state, and federal level are analyzed in accordance with policy making processes, politics in healthcare and government, healthcare economics, and ethical frameworks.
NSG 530 (3)
Advanced Pathophysiology
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 533)
This course provides an overview of the normal physiologic and pathologic mechanisms of disease and serves as one primary component of the foundation for clinical assessment, decision-making, and management. The course will prepare the advanced practice nurse for interpreting changes in normal function that results in symptoms indicative of illness in patients across the lifespan.
NSG 533 (3)
Advanced Pharmacology
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 530)
This course provides the basic principles of pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacotherapeutics for broad categories of drugs. Purpose of action, common interactions and contraindications of major drug categories are highlighted. Case studies are integrated to provide students the opportunity to demonstrate application of pharmacological theory in advancing nursing practice.
NSG 590 (3)
Scholarly Review
(Nurse Executive accelerated-track students will take this course concurrently with NSG 564.)
In this course the student will synthesize and review issues relevant to their specialty clinical practice. This course is designed as a review of the required masters level core nursing courses and specialty focused curriculum for advanced nursing practice. This course will provide an overview of both the required core nursing courses as well as each specific specialty course.
Prerequisite: Completion of Graduate Nursing Core and Concentration courses.
Note: NSG 590 is a core nursing course, and is the last class taken in the program sequence.
Nursing Informatics Concentration Courses
15 credits
NSG 565 (3)
Foundations of Nursing Informatics
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 566)
Students are introduced to the role, scope, and standards which form the foundation for nursing informatics practice. The theoretical basis of the course incorporates both knowledge of nursing practice and health informatics. Students will explore the framework of data, information, knowledge, and wisdom to data application in healthcare for improving patient care.
NSG 566 (3)
Data Management in Healthcare
(Accelerated-track students will take this concurrently with NSG 565)
Database application in nursing and healthcare systems will be examined in this course. Students will learn database design, implementation, and management to support clinical decision making in nursing and healthcare project design and management.
NSG 567 (3)
Nursing Informatics Leadership in Healthcare Systems and Project Designs
In this course students will explore the role of the informatics nurse specialist as nurse leader who combines knowledge of nursing practice and technology on healthcare teams. Theory and skills on performing system analysis and implementation of the systems design life cycle in project management.
NSG 568 (3)
Nursing Informatics Practicum I
This course requires students to perform in the role of an informatics nurse specialist in a healthcare organization. In collaboration with a preceptor students will apply nursing informatics theory and models in developing a project which improves the quality of nursing care delivered in a healthcare setting. (Clinical Practicum Hours: 100)
NSG 569 (3)
Nursing Informatics Practicum II
This course requires students to perform in the role of an informatics nurse specialist in a healthcare organization. In collaboration with a preceptor students will apply nursing informatics theory and models to implement the project planned in NSG 568, which improves the quality of nursing care delivered in a healthcare setting. (Clinical Practicum Hours: 100)

 

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Career Opportunities

The following are just a few of the unique career opportunities possible with a Nursing Informatics concentration, part of the Master of Science in Nursing degree program available online through Wilkes University:

  • Nursing Informaticist
  • Nursing Manager
  • Consultant
  • Project Manager
  • Education and Professional Development Manager
  • Researcher
  • Quality Improvement Specialist