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Nursing Administration and Leadership

Master of Science in Nursing – Nursing Administration and Leadership – Credits:  30 (program code:  0930)

Program Description

The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN degree) in Nursing Administration and Leadership is designed for those who have already obtained a baccalaureate degree in nursing.  The program is intended for nurses who: 1) currently hold administrative or leadership positions and wish to complement their experience through advancing their education formally, and 2) wish to gain knowledge and skills needed to expand their career options in the area of nursing administration and leadership in a variety of health care settings.

The courses blend theory and practice in administration, leadership, organization, quality of care, delivery systems of patient care, human resource management, legal and ethical concepts, practice, and health care finance, and incorporate health care informatics. The program culminates with a practicum in nursing administration and/or leadership where the student works with a nurse administrator/leader in his/her area of interest.

The graduate program builds upon coursework taken in an undergraduate Bachelor of Science in nursing (BSN) program. Upon completion of the MSN in Nursing Administration and Leadership program, graduates will be eligible academically to take the national certification exam for nurse administration offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).

Delivery Mode

Global Online (100 percent online delivery)

Students take two 3-credit courses consecutively each term and the first summer session. During the second summer session, students take the 6-credit practicum capstone course


The Master of Science in Nursing Administration and Leadership program at California University of Pennsylvania is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington,  DC 20036,  202-887-6791.  (

Admission Criteria

Admission Requirements (Regular)

  • Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 3.00 or higher in the undergraduate nursing degree or in the last 60 credits completed (Students with a GPA below 3.00 may apply for conditional admission)
  • Official transcripts from an accredited undergraduate institution
  • Valid RN licensure in the state in which the applicant is employed in nursing
  • Current resume indicating at least two years of experience working in nursing or, preferably, nursing management
  • An essay to include career goals and objectives as well as a description of how the student plans to utilize the MSN degree
  • For International Applicants:
    • TOEFL score of 213 on computer-based exam, 550 on paper-based exam or 80 on Internet-based exam. An official copy of an IELTS with a minimum score of 6.0 may be substituted for the TOEFL score.
    • Scholastic record must be comparable to that reflected by a 3.00 GPA verified with official transcripts and applicant needs to be licensed in their country of residence
    • Applicants must submit a credential evaluation from the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) for nursing course work and World Education Services (WES) for non-nursing course work

Conditional Admission Requirements

Conditional Admission may be granted with the following modifications of the Regular Admissions Requirements. Those admitted conditionally based on missing document/s have up to a maximum of one term to satisfy these requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree with a GPA under 3.00 will be reviewed for a decision
  • Unofficial transcripts
  • Deficiencies in pre/corequisite courses (up to two maximum terms to satisfy pre/corequisite course requirements)

Pre/Corequisite Courses

Applicants may remove deficiencies in the following pre/corequisite courses at Cal U or another accredited institution prior to regular admission or after conditional admission

  • 3 credits Nursing Research
  • 3 credits Statistics

How to Apply:

  • Complete the Graduate School Application
  • Submit the nonrefundable $25 Application Fee
  • Mail official transcript to:

         School of Graduate Studies and Research
         California University of Pennsylvania
         Box 91
         250 University Ave.
         California, PA 15419
  • Submit unofficial transcripts and other documents by mail (using the address above), email ( or fax (724-938-5712)

For additional information:

Phone: 1.866.595.6348


Required Courses
Course Name
NUR 601 Theory and Research in Nursing 3
NUR 602 Health Policy in Nursing 3
NUR 603 Information Systems for Nurses in Health Care Organizations 3
NUR 604 Population Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
NUR 711 Nursing Organization and Leadership Theory 3
NUR 712 Nursing Administration and Leadership Role3
NUR 714 Legal Aspects of Health Care Administration3
NUR 715 Financial Management in Non-profit Health Care Organizations 3
NUR 813 Nursing Administration Role Practicum6


Students in the Master of Science in Nursing program receive academic and professional advisement from the program coordinator and program faculty. Each student is assigned to an academic adviser from the time he/she is accepted into the program of study. Advisers work with students to discuss, monitor and provide advisement as it relates to their program of study.

Program Coordinator

Mary O'Connor, Ph.D., MSN (University of Pittsburgh),  B.S.N. (Carlow University), Professor
Web Page:
:  724-938-1652

Graduate Faculty

For faculty bios, visit:

Joan Clites, Ed.D., M.S.N. (West Virginia University), B.S.N. (University of Pittsburgh), Associate Professor
Cheryl Hettman, Ph.D. (University of Pittsburgh), M.S.N. (West Virginia University), B.S.N. (West Liberty State College), Associate Professor
Linda Pina, Ph.D., (Kennedy-Western University), M.S.N., B.S.N. (Indiana University of Pennsylvania) Assistant Professor
Debra Shelapinsky, M.S.N, CRNP (University of Pittsburgh), B.S.N. (University of Akron), Associate Professor