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Quick Facts

  Next Start Date: May 13, 2024


  • Delivery: 100% Online
  • Credits: 36-47
  • Ranked 28th in the nation by U.S. News & World Report
  • 100% 1st Time Exam Pass Rate for 2021 Family Nurse Practitioners (Source: American Association of Nurse Practitioners)
  • Contact: Rachel Austin

Ball State’s Master of Science (MS) in Nursing provides three paths for you to achieve your graduate degree, each one with specific benefits. You can select the one that best aligns with your career aspirations.

Offered entirely online, the nursing program’s three concentrations are: nurse educator, nurse administrator, and family nurse practitioner. We also offer a post masters certificate for nurses who have already earned a master’s degree.

Why Ball State’s Online Master’s in Nursing?

Nationally Ranked and Recognized

We are:

  • Accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing (CCNE). This signifies that our entire program and curriculum meet or exceed the national professional standards of quality and integrity for nursing education. This accreditation is important to employers and other academic institutions. Our graduates are confident that the program is well-designed and prepares them for professional success.
  • Ranked as the 28th best online graduate program in nursing by U.S. News & World Report. This is for many reasons, though in large part, due to our faculty’s extensive training and credentials, the services and technological assistance we offer, and our student engagement. 
  • Engaged with many highly respected health care organizations and committed to supporting students in planning their clinical experiences.
  • Committed to assisting our graduates with transitioning successfully into their new career roles. We have an incredible Nursing Alumni Society and all of our graduates can benefit from the powerful networking and community of support.

Faculty are Scholars and Practicing Nurses

Ball State nursing faculty are dedicated to the belief that every individual has the right to holistic and nondiscriminatory health care that is accessible and of high quality. Many faculty are actively participating in projects to elevate health care locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally. Many of our faculty are working on health care projects to actively improve care for at-risk populations.

The University works with the Nursing faculty and provides major creative and technical support in building online courses that support students who are working and going to school using online technology. The team of expert instructional designers work with faculty to provide online courses that meet and surpass national best practices in online learning.

Clinical Requirements

As a graduate student in the nursing program, there are specific requirements for learning activities essential to success in your chosen specialty. You can expect to commit to 6-10 hours per week for online course work and 8-12 hours per week for clinical courses. These are general averages, and the actual time for academic work may vary depending on your semester course load and individualized study plan. The requirements are clearly defined in each course and multiple resources are available for your success.

Plan of Study

Each student in the nursing program will have a plan of study designed for their specific needs, concentration, and requirements. We will work closely with you to develop your plan of study, help you meet your clinical requirements, and guide you through earning your Master of Science (MS) in Nursing.

Cost and Fees

To learn more about the specific costs and fees associated with the nursing program, we recommend our cost calculator. This helpful tool will provide you with an estimate of your total costs and does not include the cost of textbooks, other course materials, or additional fees associated with certain courses. A more accurate total of your costs and fees can be calculated when your plan of study is determined.

Online Delivery

Online courses are offered in an asynchronous format, meaning that for most course work there is no specific sign-on time each week. You will have weekly assignments and deadlines for course work, but the online design provides tremendous flexibility for your personal schedule.

As an online student, you will have access to a host of student services. We start all online students with an online orientation to help you become familiar with the university-wide resources available to you. Plus, as a nursing student, you will have a program-specific orientation. After orientation the Graduate Nursing team is a resource for all students.

While the online format makes your degree more accessible, it’s critical that you make it a priority in your weekly schedule.

Concentrations

Family Nurse Practitioner

Nursing - Academic ProgramsIn an advanced practice role, nurse practitioners practice in private practices, schools and colleges, hospice centers, community clinics, Veterans Affairs facilities, and private and public health departments.

Common job responsibilities:

  • diagnose and treat acute illnesses, infections and injuries
  • write prescriptions for medications, including dosage and frequency
  • order and interpret diagnostic tests
  • educate patients about managing their health and design patient treatment plans

And our family nurse practitioner concentration is designed to put you in this setting.

General Requirements

This program prepares you to provide health care across the life span in a family practice setting. In addition to the classroom requirements, you will complete 690 supervised clinical hours in primary care settings caring for adults, children, women, and families.

All of the course work for this concentration can be completed online. You will find your own preceptors in your geographic area.

You will be eligible to apply for the FNP (Family Nurse Practitioner) certification exam (ANCC and/or AANP) on completion of the program.

Complete in Six or Eight Semesters

Taking two courses at a time, most students complete this concentration in six or eight semesters. Online delivery means scheduling flexibility, plus you have part-time and full-time options.

Courses

Total Credits Required: 47

  • NUR 607 Data Analysis in Nursing Research (3 credits) or EDPS 641 Introduction to Statistical Methods (3 credits)
  • NUR 604 Research (3 credits)
  • NUR 603 Nursing Theory (3 credits)
  • NUR 605 Nursing Information Technology (2 credits)
  • NUR 610 Nursing Concepts in Health Promotion/Disease and Injury Prevention in Populations (3 credits) (45 clinical hours)
  • NUR 630 Advanced Practice Nursing and Role Theory (3 credits)
  • NUR 632 Pathophysiology and Nursing Practice (3 credits)
  • NUR 634 Advanced Health Assessment (3 credits) (60 clinical hours, 1 day per week average)
  • NUR 638 Advanced Clinical Pharmacology (3 credits)
  • NUR 681 Primary Care of the Adult 1 (4 credits) (120 clinical hours, 1 day per week average)
  • NUR 682 Primary Care of Children (4 credits) (120 clinical hours, 1 day per week average)
  • NUR 683 Primary Care of the Adult 2 (4 credits) (120 clinical hours, 1 day per week average)
  • NUR 684 Primary Care of Women (4 credits) (90 clinical hours)
  • NUR 673 Practicum—Family Nurse Practitioner (5 credits) (180 clinical hours, 1.5-2 days per week average) 

Nursing - Academic ProgramsNurse educators take their experience in nursing and their talent for teaching to the classrooms of colleges and universities, trade schools, and community colleges; plus some opportunities are found in general medical and surgical hospitals. Common job responsibilities include:

  • planning a curriculum for undergraduate courses
  • lecture on various topics
  • prepare class syllabus and other course materials
  • encourage and moderate class discussions
  • assign and grade homework while also overseeing students’ lab and clinical work

If this sounds like you, Ball State’s nurse educator concentration can lead you in this direction.

General Requirements

Our educator role courses provide a foundation in curriculum and program development; teaching and learning in nursing; and evaluation methods. All of the course work for this concentration can be completed online.

During the last semester, you will take a 180-hour practicum in an associate or baccalaureate on-campus nursing program in your geographic area. Students will have the opportunity to work with an experienced nurse educator both in the classroom and clinical setting.

Complete in Seven Semesters

Taking two courses at a time, most students complete this concentration in seven semesters.

Courses

Total Credits Required: 36

For a complete list of courses and their descriptions, see the course catalog.

View Catalog

  • NUR 607 Data Analysis in Nursing Research (3 credits) or EDPS 641 Introduction to Statistical Methods (3 credits)
  • NUR 604 Research (3 credits) 
  • NUR 603 Nursing Theory (3 credits)
  • NUR 605 Nursing Information Technology (2 credits)
  • NUR 610 Nursing Concepts in Health Promotion/Disease and Injury Prevention in Populations (3 credits) (45 clinical hours)
  • NUR 611 Concept Analysis 2, Decision Making (3 credits) 
  • NUR 620 Curricular Designs in Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 622 Teaching in Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 626 Program Evaluation (3 credits)
  • NUR 608 Pathophysiology and Pharmacology for Clinical Practice (3 credits)
  • NUR 609 Health Assessment for Clinical Practice (3 credit) (45 clinical hours)
  • NUR 672 Practicum of Role Expectations (4 credits) (180 clinical hours)

Nursing - Academic ProgramsNurse administrators play a critical leadership role as they lead teams and units of nurses while also factoring in the costs of delivering patient care. As a part of that role, nurse administrators work with policy, management, finance, and human resources in settings such as hospitals, laboratories, and long-term and nursing care facilities.

Common job responsibilities include:

  • manage and supervise work of nursing personnel
  • work to raise level of care and efficiency of care
  • create budgets, approve expenditures, manage costs
  • supervise hiring of new staff
  • document use of facility services and resources

If this sounds like you, our nurse administrator concentration will prepare you for this role.

General Requirements

This program prepares you to develop management and leadership skills in preparation for higher-level management and leadership positions within healthcare. In addition to the instruction portion of the course, students will complete 180 practicum hours in an approved healthcare environment focusing on nursing administration.

All of the course work for this concentration can be completed online. You will select your own master’s or doctoral-prepared registered nurse preceptor and clinical supervisor in your geographic area to help supervise the details of your project.

Complete in Seven Semesters

Taking two courses at a time, most students complete this concentration in 7 semesters.

Courses

Total Credits Required: 36

  • NUR 607 Data Analysis in Nursing Research (3 credits) or EDPS 641 Introduction to Statistical Methods (3 credits)
  • NUR 604 Research (3 credits)
  • NUR 603 Nursing Theory (3 credits)
  • NUR 605 Nursing Information Technology (2 credits)
  • NUR 610 Nursing Concepts in Health Promotion/Disease and Injury Prevention in Populations (3 credits) (45 clinical hours)
  • NUR 611 Concept Analysis 2, Decision Making (3 credits)
  • NUR 640 Nursing Administration in Complex Organizations (3 credits)
  • NUR 642 Administrative Management for Nurses (3 credits)
  • NUR 643 Financial Management for Nurses (3 credits)
  • MGT 500 Managing Organizational Behavior (3 credits)
  • MKG 505 Survey of Marketing (3 credits)
  • NUR 672, Practicum of Role Expectations (4 credits) (180 clinical hours)

State Authorizations

All students must reside in and complete all clinical hours in a state where the Ball State University School of Nursing is authorized to offer its programs. Students moving to a state where the master’s nursing program is not authorized will be unable to progress in the program.

Prior to applying, all prospective students need to visit the state authorizations website to determine if their state currently allows them to enroll at Ball State University for the master’s nursing program. The website and its links are updated on an as needed basis, so please check regularly for updates. 

Ready to Apply?

Are you interested in pursuing this degree? Then you will need to meet our admissions criteria and apply.

More Information

Do you have questions about this program or online learning? We’re here to help! You may request more information using our online form, or feel free to reach out directly to one of our staff.

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION    Contact Us

COE Badge

Designated a Center of Excellence by the National League for Nursing

Accreditation Logo

Accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

Ranked 28th Best Online Graduate Program in Nursing by "U.S. News & World Report"

Quality Matters Implementation Plan Seal

Granted Quality Matters Implementation Plan Designation

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