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MSN Online Program Option

The MSN program at Denver College of Nursing is designed for registered nurses who wish to further their knowledge and mastery of the art and science of nursing in order to become nurse leaders and educators. The core curriculum consists of advanced health assessment, advanced pathophysiology concepts, and a deeper exploration of pharmacology. Students will also learn leadership and educational theories, teaching strategies, curricular development, curricular planning, and programmatic evaluation, with an emphasis on culturally appropriate, evidence-based nursing practices.

This is an online, distance-learning program consisting of six quarters of study, which may be completed within 15-18 months. Nurses who apply to the MSN program at Denver College of Nursing are typically working RNs who have previously obtained their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Students must achieve and maintain at least a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 to graduate and be awarded their MSN degree.

Tests may not be repeated to improve a grade. A minimum of a “C” is required to pass all courses. 

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate mastery of advanced health assessment skills, including evidence-based health assessments encompassing environmental, genetic, multicultural, ethnic, and socioeconomic factors.
  • Demonstrate mastery of advanced pharmacology concepts, including physiological responses to drugs; issues surrounding drug interactions; polypharmacy; and drug misuse and abuse. Show knowledge of ways nurses can improve outcomes by encouraging patient compliance.
  • Demonstrate understanding of advanced concepts in pathophysiology, including symptomology and etiology of commonly encountered acute and chronic clinical entities affecting children and adults.
  • Demonstrate advanced comprehension of technologies that may be used to facilitate teaching in a variety of educational settings. Display understanding of legal and ethical issues surrounding the virtual learning environment.
  • Demonstrate competency in developing, assessing and evaluating educational programs and curricula.
  • Apply research methods to evaluate current knowledge from nursing theory, nursing science and related disciplines to inform and/or initiate change in practice.
  • Demonstrate the use of scholarly inquiry to inform ethical practice decisions.
  • Analyze the effects of health policy, finance, technology, and organizational context on the development and implementation of quality programs.
  • Utilize inter-professional communication to improve practice outcomes.
  • Integrate advances in technology into practice.  


Nurse Educator Outcomes

  • Synthesize theories of education and related sciences to the development and evaluation of nursing and healthcare curricula.
  • Facilitate learning of individuals and groups using theories of education, nursing, testing and evaluation.
  • Integrate leadership strategies to contribute to the ongoing development of nursing education.
  • Facilitate assessment and evaluation strategies in a variety of settings and in all domains of learning.

MSN Online Program Option Classes

Course No. Course Name Quarter Credits
Quarter 1    
NUR 600 Advanced Health Assessment 5
NUR 610 Advanced Concepts in Pathophysiology 5
Quarter 2    
NUR 620 Global Healthcare 5
NUR 630 Pharmacology 5
    10 credits
Quarter 3     
NUR 640 Research Methods and Evidence Based Practice for Nursing 5
NUR 650 Advanced Theory, Leadership, and Management 5
    10 credits
Quarter 4     
NUR 660 Student Centered Learning 5
NUR 670 Teaching Strategies and Technology for the Nurse Educator 5
    10 credits
Quarter 5     
NUR 680 Curriculum Development, Assessment, and Evaluation 5
NUR 690 The Nurse Educator: Roles, Responsibilities, and Relationships 5
    10 credits
Quarter 6     
NUR 695 Capstone 5
    5 credits
Core Courses 30
Specialty Courses for Nursing Education Credits 25
Total Quarter Credits for the MSN Degree 55

MSN Online Program Option Requirements and Prerequisites

To be accepted, an applicant must hold an unencumbered state license to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in their home state. The applicant must also have worked as a registered nurse for at least one year. Applicants must submit an official transcript to the Dean of Nursing Education Programs (or the Dean’s designee) indicating graduation from a nationally accredited Baccalaureate Nursing Program. Transcripts will not be accepted after the first term.

The ability to find a school that feels like family is why I chose DCN!

Claire Starr, BSN

Student