MS - Nursing

Graduate Coordinator and Advisor: Dr. Daryl Canham

Graduate Options

The MS - Nursing has specializations* in:

  • Nurse Administrator
  • Nurse Educator

*Note: Specializations are a cluster of courses used by departments for advising purposes. Specializations will not appear on transcripts or diplomas. Please see advisor for more details.

Post-Masters Certificate/Credential Preparation:

  • Nurse Educator

All options are offered only if student enrollment is adequate. Currently there is one program, the Nurse Educator post-masters program, offered through University Special Sessions. The Post Masters Nurse Educator program requires a master's degree in nursing prior to admission. Please check the School website for current information on the status of our graduate programs and courses being offered.

After earning a baccalaureate degree in Nursing from an accredited program and obtaining San José State University admission, you may enter the master's program with a major in Nursing. If you have graduated from a non-accredited baccalaureate program, prior course work will be assessed to determine requisite content and equivalency to baccalaureate degree requirements. Programs of study for the MS degree with a major in nursing are based on this assessment. Registered nurses with baccalaureate degrees in disciplines other than nursing are accepted conditionally to provide a specialized course of study prior to taking Master's in Nursing courses. There are a minimum of four undergraduate courses which need to be completed with a grade of "B" or better.

Requirements for Admission to Classified Standing

General university requirements for consideration of admission to classified standing for the master's degree are outlined in this catalog. The University requires that all graduate students complete the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) as a condition for advancement to candidacy. Please refer to the SJSU catalog section titled "Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement" for details. For graduate courses that meet the GWAR, please refer to the Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations website at In addition, the following School requirements apply:

1. Completion of an accredited baccalaureate program in nursing with an upper division major comparable to that offered at San José State University. Applicants who have completed other curricula or who have deficiencies will be considered individually and may be required to enroll in designated courses.

2. Applicants must present a grade point average of at least 3.0 in the last 60 units of the undergraduate nursing major.

3. Completion of an introductory statistics course which includes an introduction to descriptive, probability and inferential statistics within three years of admission.

4. Completion of an introductory research course.

5. Completion of an economics course equivalent to ECON 1A effective Spring 2007.

6. Evidence of licensure as a Registered Nurse (RN) in the State of California.

7. Satisfactory completion of the CSU baccalaureate graduation requirement in written English; or satisfactory completion, as a graduate student, of the SJSU undergraduate upper division writing requirement by passing the Writing Skills Test (WST) with a grade which allows a waiver; or satisfactorily completing the writing course HPRF 100W.

8. Completion of The Valley Foundation School of Nursing application with all attachments.

9. A statement of purpose which outlines applicant's goals and objectives in seeking degree/credential.

10. Evidence of having met health requirements of the school.

11. Current certification in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and evidence of professional liability insurance and health insurance.

12. Evidence of knowledge and skills in the following areas: physical and psychosocial assessment skills developed to the level that the applicant can perform a complete history and physical exam on a well adult of either gender within one hour. Work completed to make up any of the above deficiencies will not be counted as part of the required units for the MS - Nursing.

13. The Valley Foundation School of Nursing (TVFSON) at SJSU has applied for reactivation of the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program. The program is currently under review. Pending approval and funding availability, updated information will be posted on the TVFSON website.

Requirements for Admission to Conditionally Classified Standing

Students whose records show certain deficiencies, but whose professional achievements indicate a promise of success, may be admitted on a conditional basis. To qualify for classified standing, conditions must be met. The appropriate form will be completed by the Graduate Coordinator upon receipt of documentation and sent to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies for review.

Requirements for Admission to Candidacy for the MS - Nursing

Admission to candidacy for the MS - Nursing requires that the applicant has been granted classified standing and has removed any deficiencies involved. In addition, the candidate must have:

1. Earned at least a "B" (3.0) average in a minimum of nine graded semester units of 100- and/or 200-level work completed in graduate standing at San José State University and in any course work completed in graduate standing at other institutions before enrollment here.

2. Have classified status.

3. Have planned a proposed program of study approved by the School Graduate Coordinator and by the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies.

Completing Requirements for the MS - Nursing

With approval of an advisor, the minimum program for completing the 36-unit requirement for a MS - Nursing is as follows:

Classified standing in nursing or permission of instructor is prerequisite to all nursing courses listed.

Students have the option to complete a post master's Nurse Educator Certificate.

Course Requirements

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement
At SJSU, students must pass the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR). For information on the GWAR, please see
Requirements of the Masters36
Required Core Courses19
NURS 200. Population Based Health Care Systems3
NURS 201. Clinical Leadership Role Development2
NURS 202. Theoretical Foundations2
NURS 248. Advanced Health Assessment3
NURS 259. Advanced Clinical Pharmacology3
NURS 260. Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology for Advanced Practice Nursing3
NURS 295A. Research Methods3
Functional Areas of Specialization14
Nurse Educator
EDUC 186. Using Instructional Media3
NURS 212. Curriculum Development in Nursing3
NURS 214. Nurse Educator Theory & Practicum I4
NURS 216. Nurse Educator Theory and Practicum II4
Culminating Experience3
Complete one course from:
NURS 297. Master's Project1-4
NURS 299. Master's Thesis1-4

Total Units:36

Elective courses, if applicable, are to be taken outside The Valley Foundation School of Nursing. The content of these units is to support the chosen functional option. At least one of the courses must be at the 200-level of course work. FNP students do not have elective course requirements.