Academic Catalog

Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Track

Master of Science in Nursing      

Expected Outcomes of the Program

  • Applies scientific theories and research to implement the advanced nursing role
  • Demonstrates competence according to national standards and guidelines in the advanced nursing role
  • Demonstrates knowledge of legal, ethical, fiscal, policy, and leadership issues that impact the delivery of health care in the advanced nursing role
  • Demonstrates knowledge of legal, ethical, fiscal, policy, and leadership issues that impact the advancement of the nursing profession in the advanced nursing role
  • Identifies researchable nursing problems and contributes to research studies for advanced nursing and health care practice     


  • Baccalaureate degree in nursing program accredited by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission or Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. A baccalaureate degree in nursing from a foreign institution must be recognized by The University of Akron.
  • 3.00 GPA on a 4.00 scale for BSN and all previous nursing degrees.
  • CCRN certification required prior to interview for the Nurse Anesthesia program.
  • Three letters of reference from a recent employer; a member of the nursing profession; a former faculty member.
  • 300-word essay describing professional goals.
  • Interview prior to admission to the program.
  • Current unrestricted State of Ohio license to practice nursing.
  • Prerequisite course requirements: Undergraduate Statistics, Nursing Research, Basic Health Assessment and Computer Skills, Graduate Level Statistics.

Applicants for the clinical tracks are required to have a minimum of 12 months registered nurse experience current within the last five years. The RN experience must be relevant to the area of interest.

Applicants who are certified nurse practitioners will be evaluated and have their program planned on an individual basis.

All application materials for the Nurse Anesthesia program must be received by August 1. Once accepted into the School of Nursing MSN program candidates may begin taking core courses. Candidates may be eligible to interview for the program in October. Students admitted into the program will begin anesthesia classes in June of the following year. A minimum of one year of adult critical care experience is required at the time of the October interview for the Nurse Anesthesia program.

Admission Procedures

The student should access the online graduate application through the Graduate School webpage. Questions regarding admissions may be directed to the School of Nursing Graduate Program Office (330) 972-7555.

The School of Nursing Graduate Admission and Progression Committee and the Assistant Director of Graduate Programs will review and make decisions for applications. The admit decision will be sent to the Graduate School. Applicants will receive notification of the admission decision via an e-letter from the Graduate School and a letter from the School of Nursing.

Instructional Program

The Master of Science in Nursing curriculum includes a minimum of 36 credit hours of study depending on the specialty track. The advanced practice tracks include Adult/Gerontological Health Nursing, Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing, Child and Adolescent Health Nursing, and Nurse Anesthesia. Graduates are prepared for advanced practice as nurse practitioners or nurse anesthetists. The curriculum is based on theory and research both in nursing and in related disciplines. It provides the foundation for doctoral study and for ongoing professional development.

Nursing Core

The curriculum consists of a core of 17 credit hours. These courses encompass advanced theory, research, information management in nursing, health policy, and pathophysiological concepts.

Nursing Research

All students enroll in a research core for a total of 6-7 credits: 8200:613 Nursing Inquiry I: Promoting a Spirit of Inquiry, and 8200:699 Masters Thesis or 8200:618 Nursing Inquiry III.

RN Sequence

This sequence is limited to registered nurse graduates of Associate Degree and Diploma nursing programs.

The RN program is designed for registered nurses who hold a diploma or associate degree in nursing or a baccalaureate degree in another field. It is specifically designed for RN’s who are interested in obtaining the baccalaureate degree in nursing and/or continuing on to a master’s degree in nursing. Students must complete 68-69 hours of prerequisite undergraduate coursework prior to acceptance into the sequence. The RN program consists of 32 credit hours of upper-division baccalaureate coursework. Students wishing to begin work on the Master’s degree RN/MSN option may do so while meeting the baccalaureate requirements and must apply to the graduate program in the fall or early spring prior to graduation. Additional admission requirements and a graduate research class (Inquiry I) are part of the RN/MSN option. Continuation in the graduate program is predicated on meeting graduate program requirements and acceptance into the graduate nursing program.

Advanced Practice Options

Options are provided for advanced practice as a nurse practitioner or nurse anesthetist. Requirements for admission include at least one year of practice in the area of interest.

The Master of Science in Nursing curriculum requires from 36 to 60 credits, depending on the Advanced Practice option selected by the student.

Core courses required of all students:

  • 8200:603 Theoretical Basis for Nursing (3 credits)
  • 8200:606 Information Management in Advanced Nursing Practice (3 credits)
  • 8200:607 Policy Issues in Nursing (2 credits)
  • 8200:608 Pathophysiological Concepts of Nursing Care (3 credits)
  • 8200:613 Nursing Inquiry I: Promoting a Spirit of Inquiry (3 credits)
  • 8200:618 Nursing Inquiry II (3 credits)

Functional role courses selected by students based upon area of specialty.

Nurse Anesthesia students take 8200:561 Advanced Physiological Concepts in Health Care I and 8200:562 Advanced Physiological Concepts in Health Care II. Nursing Service Administration students may take Pathophysiological Concepts of Nursing Care or choose from an approved elective.

Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Track

The Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner track (38-42 credit hours) provides the educational preparation necessary to provide primary mental healthcare at an advanced level to individuals of all ages and families. Preparation as a Psychiatric Family Nurse Practitioner is emphasized and includes clinical supervision of individuals and families, differential diagnosis and management of psychiatric and mental health disorders, medication management, psychotherapeutic interventions, and case management. Graduates of the Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner track are eligible to sit for certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) as a Family Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (FPMHNP).

Students must earn a "B-" or higher in core and specialty courses.

  • 8200:610 Advanced Adult/Gerontological Assessment (3 credits)
  • 8200:611 Advanced Mental Health Assessment Across the Lifespan (3 credits)
  • 8200:660 Family Psychiatric Mental Health, APN I Practicum (2 credits)  
  • 8200:661 Psychiatric Mental Health, APN I (3 credits)
  • 8200:662 Clinical Psychopharmacology (3 credits)
  • 8200:664 Psychiatric Mental Health-Acute, APN II Practicum  (2 credits)  
  • 8200:665 Psychiatric Mental Health-Acute, APN II (3 credits)
  • 8200:667 Pscyhiatric Mental Health-Chronic, APN III (3 credits)
  • 8200:668 Psychiatric Mental Health-Chronic, APN III Practicum (2 credits)  
  • 8200:669 Psychiatric Mental Nursing-Synthesis, APN IV Practicum (2 credits)  
  • 8200:670 Psychiatric Mental Health-Synthesis, APN IV (3 credits)

Additional courses from existing programs:

  • 8200:605 Child & Family Interventions for Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners (3 credits)
  • 8200:614 Advanced Concepts for Family Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse (3 credits)
  • 8200:650 Advanced Pediatric/Adolescent Assessment (3 credits)
  • 8200:663 Psychiatric Mental Health APN Internship (1-4 credits)