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AACN Guide to Graduate Nursing Program


The Direct Entry Master of Science in Nursing program for non-nursing graduates is designed for individuals who hold baccalaureate degrees in fields other than nursing. The 75-credit program builds upon previous, broad educational preparation and provides an intense, accelerated and specialized nursing curriculum preparing students to take the NCLEX examination and to earn a master of science degree in nursing. Course work prepares graduates for Clinical Nurse Leader certification exam.

Marquette nursing faculty believe that leadership in providing an academically, fiscally and socially responsible health care system to facilitate educational mobility of individuals is an important component of the university's mission. The Direct Entry MSN curriculum is designed to facilitate graduate nursing education and accommodate adult learners.

With the addition of our off-campus location in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, individuals living closer to Chicago can earn the same quality Direct Entry MSN education that is available in Milwaukee. The primary difference is that the nursing theory coursework takes place online instead of in a traditional classroom environment.

Program highlights

Admission requirements

Admission process

Prospective students for the online Direct Entry MSN program in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, must contact an admissions adviser to start the admissions process.

Prospective students need to complete the application for the master of science in nursing program for non-nursing graduates via Nursing CAS. The application deadline is December 15 for the following May start date. Completed applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the December 15th deadline. Full-time enrollment is required to complete the 75-credit program.

Progression requirements

A GPA of 3.0 is required each semester and in summer modules for continuation in the program and a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better must be maintained throughout the program.


Semester One  

NURS 6001   Health Assessment & Fundamentals I

NURS 6002   Health Assessment and Fundamentals II 4
NURS 6015   Pharmacotherapeutics for Nursing Practice 3
NURS 6030   Pathophysiological Concepts for Advanced Nursing Practice 3

Semester Two


NURS 5701   Nursing Concepts and Intervention, Adults/Older Adults I Theory


NURS 5900   Family-centered Nursing of Children Theory

NURS 5963  Nursing Care for Patients with Chronic Conditions Practicum 4
NURS 6005  Concepts and Interventions for the Promotion of Mental Health 3
HEAL 6009   Organizational and System Leadership 3

Semester Three

NURS 5600   Community and Population Health Nursing 3

NURS 5803   Maternity Nursing and Women’s Health Theory

NURS 6010   Research and Evidence as a Foundation 3
NURS 6200   Nursing Concepts and Intervention, Adults/Older Adults II Theory 3
NURS 6246   Nursing Care for Patients with Acute Conditions Practicum 4

Semester Four

NURS 6000 Theoretical Foundations of Nursing 3
HEAL 6007   Ethics, Policy and Health Care Advocacy 3
NURS 6244   Health Promotion Across the Lifespan 3
HEAL 6825 Quality Improvement and Patient Safety in Health Care   3
NURS 6964   Clinical Nurse Leader Practicum I (Kaplan Prep included in CNL I) 3

Semester Five:

NURS 6032   Pharmacology for Advanced Nursing Practice 3
NURS 6035 Advanced Health Care Assessment Across the Lifespan 3
HEAL 6049 Outcome Management 3
HEAL 6835    Informatics, Technology and Professional Issues 3
NURS 6974   Clinical Nurse Leader Practicum II 3

TOTAL for DE = 75 credits


Post-master's certificate program

As a Direct Entry Master of Science in Nursing graduate, you are eligible to apply for a post-master's certificate in advanced nursing practice. Credits required depend on the specialty selected but will range from 18-28 credits. Note that some options require a year of practice before beginning clinical practice courses. Individuals considering post-master's certificate programs at Marquette University must attain professional nursing licensure in the State of Wisconsin.


College of Nursing Mission Statement

Through a transformational Catholic, Jesuit education, Marquette University College of Nursing prepares nurse leaders to promote health, healing and social justice for all people through clinical practice and development of nursing knowledge.