Master of Science in Nursing, Family Practitioner (FNP)

Sheryl Steadman, Dean
Ronda Lucey, Program Director

The Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program builds on a baccalaureate nursing degree to prepare advanced practice nurses in the areas of primary health care.

After graduation, FNP students are eligible to take the American Nurse Credential Center (ANCC) or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) certification exam and apply for Utah licensure as Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) with prescriptive authority.


The Family Nurse Practitioner program is based on a philosophy of holistic health care for patients and families in today’s dynamic and complex health care environment. Graduates will use their clinical competence and political efficacy to improve both individual health outcomes and the overall quality of the healthcare system.


The Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program at Westminster College provides students the expertise required in advanced nursing practice and leadership. The program builds on a baccalaureate nursing education to develop attributes essential to providing comprehensive, holistic healthcare across the lifespan. Students integrate clinical judgment and critical thinking for culturally appropriate patient-centered care. Students will establish an advanced understanding of the art and science of nursing and are encouraged to seek additional continuing education and volunteer their services to the local community.

Program Outcome

FNP graduates will:

  1. Establish therapeutic relationships and use a holistic, culturally appropriate, evidence-based approach to assess, diagnose, and prescribe treatments for individuals, families, and clinical populations.
  2. Assume a leadership role in the development and implementation of health promotion interventions for individuals, families, and communities.
  3. Analyze healthcare policy and the effect of these policies on nursing practice and healthcare delivery in order to advocate for improved public healthcare outcomes and the profession of nursing.
  4. Integrate theory, evidence, clinical judgment, research, and interprofessional perspective to improve practice and associated health outcomes for patient populations.
  5. Employ interprofessional collaborative strategies utilizing information and communication technologies in the design, coordination, and evaluation of patient centered care.

Admission to the Program

See Admission to the College section for admission requirements.

Progression in the Program

The student must:

  • Receive a grade of B or higher in all courses. Cumulative test/quiz scores must average 80% or higher in all courses, or the student will not be able to progress. If a student does not achieve 80% or higher, the course grade will reflect only the average test/quiz scores achieved by the end of the course.
  • Complete the program in 4 years from time of initial admission.
  • Maintain a current, unencumbered Utah RN license.
  • Complete all scholarly paper requirements according to identified time schedules.
  • Maintain a background check free of arrest and/or criminal incidents. Report any arrests and/or incidents related to legal and/or licensure concerns to the Program Director within 24 hours.
  • Maintain a negative drug screen. Report any change or prescribed use of mind-altering substances, including narcotics, within 24 hours to the Program Director.
  • Remain in good standing at clinical sites.

See Grading and Academic Standards for graduate academic probation and suspension policies.

Graduation Requirements

Applications for May graduation are due in September. Please see the Academic Calendar for more specific dates. Candidates are notified of remaining degree requirements within four weeks after applying for graduation.

To be eligible for a Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) degree, students must satisfy the following conditions to qualify for graduation from Westminster College:

  • Meet all credit hour and other course requirements
  • Maintain an overall grade point average of 3.0 or above
  • Be enrolled at Westminster College during the semester in which they wish to graduate
  • Maintain good academic standing
  • Earn a grade of B or higher in all graduate courses

Please note that the program requires that students must earn a grade of B or higher in all graduate courses to qualify for graduation, regardless of their cumulative GPA. The final responsibility for being informed about, and adhering to, graduation requirements rests with the individual. Continued communication with the faculty advisor is recommended.

Program Requirements

A minimum of 42 semester hours is required for graduation. The acceptance of transfer credit, up to 9 hours, is individually evaluated. The minimum number of clinical practice hours for the program is 546 hours.

Requirement Description
Credit Hours Prerequisites
I. Required Courses 42
MSN       500     Advanced Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning (4)
MSN       501     Advanced Pathophysiology (3)
MSN       532     Pharmacology for Advanced Practice (3)
MSN       540     Theoretical Found. of Advanced Practice Nursing (3)
MSN       550     Health Care and Health Promotion of Adults And Older                                              Adults/Clinical Seminar (4)
MSN       570     Research in the Practice Setting (2)
MSN       581     Health Care and Health Promotion of Young Adults/Clinical                                     Seminar (4)
MSN       582     Health Care and Health Promotion of Infants through                                                  Adolescents/Clinical Seminar (4)
MSN       584     Ambulatory Care Procedures (3)
MSN       601     Role and Leadership in Advanced Practice Nursing (2)
MSN       610     Master’s Project (3)
MSN       639     Advanced Nursing Practicum/Clinical Seminar (5)
MSN      670      Synthesis: Practice in Context (2)
Total Minimum Hours Required for the FNP Program 42


Program Plan of Study

Fall Semester Spring Semester Summer Semester
Year 1 MSN 500 (3/1)
MSN 501 (3/0)
MSN 540 (3/0)
MSN 532 (3/0)
MSN 550 (2/2)
MSN 570 (2/0)
MSN 584 (3/0)
MSN 581 (2/2)
MSN 601 (2/0)
Year 2 MSN 582 (2/2)
MSN 610 (3/0)
MSN 670 (2/0)
MSN 639 (0/5)
MSN 699 (0) [if needed]
MSN 650 (0) [if needed] MSN 699 (0) [if needed]

Note: one clinical hour equals a minimum of 42 hours in a clinical setting.

Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate Option

An FNP certificate is available to individuals with a Master of Science degree in nursing who are nationally certified as nurse practitioners. The focus of this certificate fulfills requirements to be able to become nationally certified as a family nurse practitioner.

The program director grants permission to complete an FNP certificate after evaluation of the previous course of study. An individualized plan of study is developed based on the evaluation of previous advanced practice preparation. All certificate students are required to take MSN 639 (Advanced Nursing Practicum/Clinical Seminar) and MSN 670 (Synthesis: Practice in Context). In addition, other courses may be identified to ensure competency in a family nurse practitioner focus.

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