Graduate Entry Nursing Programs Online

Feb 28, 2018

Graduate entry programs in nursing typically have to be completed on campus. The following are a few of the common courses you will encounter and the admission requirements you will need to meet.

Nursing is a field that requires not only classroom learning but also hands-on practice. Graduate entry programs are designed for students with a bachelor's degree unrelated to nursing, so you won't be able to find this kind of program online. However, several universities offer traditional on-site graduate entry nursing programs that you might consider.

Coursework Requirements

Graduate entry programs in nursing are prelicensure programs that typically lead to earning a master's degree and preparing students to become registered nurses. The following are a few of the courses you can anticipate taking in these programs, which usually last two to three years.


Pathophysiology refers to the physiological processes that take place when the body is affected by a disease. This course is designed to help students understand the physiology behind acute and chronic health problems. As such, students can anticipate learning about health issues that arise not only at one point in life, but throughout the lifespan. Following course completion, students should understand how clinical decisions are made with regard to responding to disease in the body.


This course deals with the topic of pharmacological practices specifically in the nursing field. The principles of pharmacology are studied to better understand how they are applied to support health restoration and maintenance. Part of this course requires coming to a deeper understanding of medical drugs and their effects on the human body. This requires that students become more familiar with drug classifications and their mechanisms of action.

Health Assessment

Courses in health assessment are designed to help nurses become more familiar with the framework for engaging with patients. This framework is shaped by both a holistic and culturally relevant approach, requiring that students become knowledgeable about a variety of topics during the course. Students will study the importance of patients' health history, risk appraisal, and health promotion. Other topics may include psychosocial development and the use of physical examination techniques.

Nursing Science Foundations

Foundational courses introduce students to the theories that underpin the nursing practice and guide research in this area. The course also attempts to unite theory, research, and practice into a cohesive body of knowledge. From this, students will learn how to read through existing literature in their field, critically appraise that literature, and come to effective nursing practices as they relate to patient assessment and intervention.

Healthcare for Children and Families

Part of nursing care includes addressing the needs of families. Coursework in this area looks at health concerns as they relate to women and children with a focus on a woman's lifetime. Students will become familiar with caring for a child from pregnancy to birth. This course also examines the postpartum period and periods between conceptions.

Admission Requirements

Although admissions standards may shift from one school to another, the following are a few of the common requirements you will need to meet. Colleges and unversities offering graduate entry programs require that you submit transcripts showing that you earned an accredited bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing. If asked for a minimum GPA, you may need to have maintained at least a 3.0 to be considered for admission. You could have to submit GRE scores, although the school may not publish a minimum GRE score that you need to have attained. Schools might also require you to complete prerequisites before entering a graduate entry nursing program, such as coursework in research methods, biology, and anatomy.

A graduate entry program in nursing focuses heavily on learning about nursing theories and practices that are essential to working as a registered nurse. Your coursework will typically include topics such as health assessments, diseases, pharmacological drugs, and healthcare for women and children.

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