MS in Nursing/MPA Program

General information and requirements

A dual-degree program is available for students wishing to combine a master's degree (MS) in nursing from Binghamton University's Decker School of Nursing with a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the University's College of Community and Public Affairs/CCPA.

This program is targeted specifically to students in the Community Health Nursing program who have selected the nurse administrator role. Information about the specialization and role are presented on the MS program webpage.

The MPA-MS nursing program allows students to complete both degrees in three years of full-time study by carefully structuring the sequence of courses, recognizing comparable course offerings and using courses in one program to count as electives in the other. The 42-credit hour MPA program and 48-credit hour MS nursing programs can be completed as part of a 67-credit hour program, rather than 90 credit hours required to complete the two programs without the benefit of the dual-degree structure.

The MPA-MS programs prepares students for nursing administrator positions in hospitals, healthcare facilities and community health agencies. It emphasizes community health and professional management to prepare nurses to be effective administrators.

Nurses who advance to administrative positions often find themselves struggling with responsibilities related to budgetary, human resources, organizational, policy and management matters. This program helps nurses advance their professional nursing credentials, while also developing the necessary knowledge and skills for effective management.

Curriculum

Below is a sample curriculum plan for the MPA-MS program (download a printer friendly version). Use this plan in conjunction with the dual-degree curriculum worksheet to plan your course sequence.

Students may also wish to visit the MPA-MS webpage on the CCPA website.

  • Dual-degree: master's in nursing and master of public administration

    Year 1, fall semester

    Clinical hours

    Credits

    PAFF 520: 21st Century Governance OR PAFF 521: Foundations of Public Service

     

    4

    NURS 502: Concepts in Health Assessment for Nurses in Advanced Clinical Practice

    60 3

    NURS 600: Advanced Research Methods and Quantitative Analyses

     

    3

    NURS 540/PAFF 548A: Elements of Epidemiology and Biostatistics

     

    3

    Semester total

    60 13

    Year 1, spring semester

    Clinical hours  Credits

    PAFF 520: 21st Century Governance OR PAFF 521: Foundations of Public Service

      4

    NURS 503: Scientific Inquiry: Theoretical Foundations for Advanced Nursing 

     

    2

    NURS 541: Community Health Nursing Practice I

    60 3

    PAFF 5XX: Managing People in Organizations (PAFF 532, 534, 535, 536)

     

    3

    Semester total

    60 12

    Year 1, summer session

    Clinical hours Credits

    NURS 581L: Healthcare Finance

     

    3

    Semester total

    0 3

    Year 2, fall semester

    Clinical hours   Credits

    NURS 535: Scientific Inquiry: Application of Research Methods

     

    2

    NURS 542/PAFF 548B: Community Health Nursing Practice II (capstone part 1)

    60

    3

    NURS 548: DNP Organizational Behavior

     

    4

    NURS 633/PAFF 542: Advanced Health Systems

     

    3

    Semester total

    60 12

    Year 2, spring semester

    Clinical hours  Credits

    NURS 543: Community Health Nursing Practice III (capstone part 2)

    60 3

    PAFF 526: Managing Information and Technology

     

    2

    PAFF 5XX: Evidence-Based Decision Making (PAFF 515, 516, 523)

     

    4

    NURS 570: Proseminar

     

    2

    Semester total

    60 11
    Year 3, fall semester Clinical hours  Credits
    Elective: PAFF 5XX or NURS 5XX   3
    Elective: PAFF 5XX or NURS 5XX

      3
    PAFF 527: Budgeting and Financial Management   4
    Semester total  0 10
    Year 3, spring semester Clinical hours  Credits
    PAFF 585: ePortfolio   3
    NURS 634/PAFF 548: Health Policy   3
    Semester total  0 6

    TOTAL REQUIRED FOR COMPLETION OF DUAL DEGREE

    240 67

    Matriculated students may petition to have credits earned at other institutions transferred toward the Binghamton University Decker School of Nursing graduate degree. Learn about Decker's policy for transferring graduate credit.

Application criteria

All students wishing to pursue a master's degree in nursing must satisfy the general conditions and procedures for admission to Binghamton University's Graduate School.

In addition, the following will be evaluated for admission:

NOTE: For complete information about application criteria, clinical practice requirements and additional requirements, applicants should review the University Bulletin(select "Nursing-Graduate" under "Graduate Fields of Study by Department"). The rules and regulations posted in the University Bulletin at the time of a student's matriculation into the University are the ones to which that student is held.

  • A baccalaureate degree in nursing from an ACEN- or CCNE-accredited school of nursing program
  • A descriptive statistics course with a grade of C or better
  • An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better
  • A current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered professional nurse in the U.S.
  • Students must take and pass the NCLEX-RN examination prior to the start of clinical courses and/or by a specified date set by Decker's director of graduate nursing programs
  • Prior to beginning clinical experiences in a New York clinical facility, students must submit a copy of their current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in New York; this is required by the New York State Department of Education Office of the Professions
  • Two satisfactory academic or professional references
  • Submission of a 500-word personal statement that addresses: why the student is seeking advanced education in general and specifically at Binghamton University; unique aspects of the student's background that will contribute to the DSON graduate community (for example, extracurricular, work or volunteer experiences); and goals the student hopes to achieve upon completion of the program
  • Résumé or curriculum vitae
  • Graduate record examination (GRE) scores are not routinely required, but may be requested based on evaluation of official transcripts
  • For international students:
  • Notes about admissions requirements above
    • A student may considerapplying for non-degree/non-matriculated statusin lieu of matriculation in order to complete up to a maximum of 12 graduate nursing credits as a non-degree student; after this time, the student, may apply to be considered for regular matriculated admission. The director of graduate nursing programs provides advisement regarding appropriate courses for enrollment by non-degree students attempting to prove their ability to be successful at the graduate nursing level, and in anticipation of students applying for future matriculated status.
    • Required letters of recommendation from professional referents may not be personal friends or family members of the applicant. It is expected that a professional referent is a current or former supervisor to the applicant.
    • Any U.S. student applicant may be admitted "regular admit-additional advising" (formerly known as "conditional admission") by the Decker School. By definition, this category of admission means the applicant lacks required application criteria.
    • U.S. students who do not advance from a regular-additional advising ("conditional") to regular admission status in a timely manner (i.e., failure to meet the department's conditional admission requirements) will find their registration blocked and possibly risk program dismissal.
    • International student applicants cannot be admitted "conditionally" based on changes to federal regulations implemented in 2016 by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP).
    • International student applicants who have not met minimum TOEFL, IELTS or PTE Academic score requirements may be recommended for an offer of admission from the Decker School of Nursing, but will be granted only provisional admission by the Graduate School.
    • A provisional admission status related to these test scores requires the applicant provide sufficient proof of English proficiency.
    • Once sufficient proof has been provided by the applicant, the Graduate School will default the admissions decision back to that assigned by the department and the student will receive a regular letter of admission and an I-20.
    • In such an admissions case, the student will be required to take an English as a Second Language (ESL) assessment exam. Exam results assist the department in determining which ESL courses will be completed by the student preliminary to or concurrently with core graduate nursing course requirements in the first and/or subsequent semesters, and at the discretion of the graduate nursing program director.
    • U.S. students enrolling immediately after graduation from a Bachelor of Science program in nursing must pass the national licensing examination (NCLEX-RN) before beginning any clinical coursework. Students who are granted full-time admission in a fall semester are scheduled to take NURS 502: Advanced Physical Health Assessment in the first semester of study. NURS 502 has a clinical component requiring those students to pass the NCLEX-RN examination and provide proof of passing the exam by August 15 of the first fall semester of admission.
    • Students who have already completed a master's degree in nursing from an accredited program, but wish to pursue a different clinical specialty and/or advanced practice role may be admitted to the post-master's program. (GREs are not required for the post-master's program.)
    • Graduates of nursing schools outside the U.S. must hold a baccalaureate degree in nursing or its equivalent. World Education Services (WES) transcripts must be submitted as proof of a baccalaureate degree. Licensure (or eligibility) to practice in the U.S. is required.
    • One year of full-time employment as a professional registered nurse is strongly recommended prior to application for admission to a graduate nursing program of study, but it is not required. At the discretion of the director of graduate nursing programs, students may be admitted to begin the master's degree program on a part-time basis to allow them time to gain confidence in their nursing skills while working in a hospital setting as an RN.
    • Students admitted to a graduate nursing program must be computer literate before beginning their studies. They must possess: the ability to use various software applications, use email, conduct web searches, download and upload files and communicate through instant messaging and chatting.

Application procedures

Students must apply and be admitted to both the MPA program and the MS nursing program. These are separate applications and each requires an application fee to the Graduate School. Students who begin one program and then apply to the other program later must meet with the appropriate advisors for both programs to develop a customized program of study; completion within three years may not be possible for students who do not begin the programs in the same semester.

Information on admissions, financial aid, housing, program costs and visiting Binghamton University's campus (including a virtual tour) is presented on the Graduate School website.

Complete instructions for applying to Binghamton University are available on the Graduate School's how to apply webpage. If you have questions regarding application submission, contact the Graduate School at 607–777–2151 or gradadmission@binghamton.edu.

If you have a felony or child abuse conviction
Students who have a felony or child abuse conviction are advised that their prior criminal history may impede their ability to complete the requirements of the Decker School of Nursing and/or to meet licensure requirements for nursing or advanced-practice licensure. If you have concerns about this, you are advised to contact the Decker Academic Advising and Student Services Office, the undergraduate or graduate program director or the Dean's Office. You are required to report felony convictions while enrolled in the Decker School of Nursing as it may change your progression and ability to be placed in a clinical agency. To learn if felony/child abuse convictions will negatively impact your ability for licensure, check with the State Board of Nursing in the state in which you plan to practice.