Minnesota RN to MSN Programs
As the trend in nursing moves toward highly educated RNs and improved patient outcomes, registered nurses in Minnesota are turning to RN to MSN programs to complete their graduate degrees. With a Master's of Science in Nursing (MSN), nurses who currently hold an Associate or Bachelor's degree in nursing can advance to coveted careers in administration, education, and more. There are online and in-person options available, making it accessible to a wide variety of students.
Prospective students must ensure that they meet or exceed all requirements in order to be accepted into the RN to MSN program of their choice. Common admissions requirements include:
- Successful completion of an ADN or BSN program (exact degree requirement varies by program)
- Evidence of current, unencumbered Minnesota RN license
- Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better
- Minimum of 1 year clinical nursing experience
Students can generally expect to take advanced core courses along with specialized nursing courses as part of an RN to MSN program. Those starting out from an ADN will also have to take "bridge" courses before they can start the graduate portion. Most programs offer one or more concentrations, including Nurse Administrator and Nurse Practitioner.
As part of the MSN program at St. Catherine University, for example, students take the following courses:
- NURS 5000: Introduction to Nursing Science and Practice
- NURS 5002: Application of Evidence-Guided Nursing Practice
- NURS 6006: Family Centered Care in Diverse Health Care Settings
- NURS 6007: Promoting and Protecting the Health of Vulnerable Populations
- NURS 6012: Basic Graduate Nursing Informatics
- NURS 6223: Advanced Pharmacology Across the Lifespan
Nurses who wish to keep working or have other family or personal obligations that they will need to tend do while completing a graduate degree may want to consider an online program. These programs offer maximum convenience and flexibility, typically allowing students to move through the courses at their own pace and from their own homes. Clinical hours are also usually able to be arranged in the student's local area, making it ideal for those who don't live near a university.
Featured Online School
Bethel University in St. Paul offers a fully online MSN program with a Nurse Educator concentration. This hands-on program prepares students to teach in pre-licensure and degree-completion nursing programs. Graduation from the MS Nurse Educator program allows students to sit for the nurse educator credentialing exam.
Admissions and Program Length
There are a lot of factors that can affect the time it takes to complete an RN to MSN program. Part-time or full-time study is the main factor, but specialization type can also impact a program's length. Whether a student starts the program with an ADN or BSN will also determine how long it takes to complete. Generally, 2-3 years is a good estimate of how long it might take to earn a graduate degree. Admissions are typically granted at the start of each semester.
Tuition and Cost of Attendance
While every school will charge slightly different rates for an RN to MSN program, students can expect to pay for tuition, fees, and course materials. Financial aid and scholarships are typically available for those who qualify. As an example on cost, Saint Mary's University of Minnesota charges tuition of $605 per credit for its MSN in Nurse Anesthesia. This is not inclusive of mandatory fees or extras, such as textbooks.
Minnesota nurses who earn an MSN enjoy rewarding careers in nursing fields such as:
- Nurse Anesthetist
- Nurse Educator
- Family Nurse Practitioner
- Nurse Administrator
RN to MSN Salary Comparison
Nursing careers that require a graduate level degree tend to come with substantially larger salaries than those that do not. For instance, a nurse practitioner with an MSN in Duluth earns an average annual base salary of $93,226. A general registered nurse in Duluth, however, earns a median annual salary of $63,872. This jump in earnings leads many RNs to pursue a graduate nursing degree.
- Minnesota Nurses Association
- Minnesota Board of Nursing
- Minnesota Nurse Practitioners
- Minnesota Student Nurses' Association
Pediatric Nurse, Pain Management, Gerontological Nurse, these are all areas of nursing that are potentially open to candidates that hold an MSN degree. If you think that these or any number of the specialized areas are of interest to you and influence your future as a nurse, you may want to consider an MSN degree. There are currently an estimated 5 colleges that offer RN to MSN programs to help nurses bridge their next steps in professional development, either full-time or part-time, and some are being offered online to fit the needs of working nurses.
School of Nursing & Health Sciences
225 South 6th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55402
School of Nursing
100 Washington Avenue South, Suite 900
Minneapolis, MN 55401
Winona State University - RochesterCampus
College of Nursing and Health Sciences
859 30th Ave SE
Rochester, MN 55904