There are three common joint degrees available with a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). Many students pursue a Master of Science in Nursing, because they want to transition into a leadership or administrative position. The most common dual Master of Science in Nursing programs includes public health, business administration and health administration, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.
Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Public Health (MSN/MPH)
A MSN/MPH program prepares nurses to effectively deliver nursing services in community-based settings. This dual degree program teaches advanced nursing theory and practice with a public health viewpoint. Graduates will be trained to guide health care teams in the development of creative and evidence-based health care services for high-risk groups. Equally important, they will also have the culturally appropriate knowledge in order to provide the highest level of competent care. MSN/MPH graduates typically go on to find work in non-profits, government agencies and academic organizations. They seek to influence community strategies to promote health and disease prevention in vulnerable populations through designing and implementing behavior change programs.
Dual degree coursework will cover both advanced nursing and public health classes. For example, population-based public health nursing will present students with integrated evidence-based practices from the fields of public health and public health nursing. On the other hand, leadership and management coursework will cover how to analyze, integrate and apply principles of leadership and management to health care organizations and populations. Other important classes include statistical methods and reasoning in public health.
Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Business Administration (MSN/MBA)
One of the most popular joint degrees available with a master of science in nursing borrows from MBA program content to transform students into knowledgeable and competent nurse administrators. It is intended to prepare nurses to become ethical and economic managers in health care organizations through assimilating and applying nursing and business knowledge. Class content focuses on cultivating the leadership skills required to excel in a collaborative work environment. Students will learn about servant leadership theories, evidence-based health care management and effective administration of human and financial resources.
Sample courses include applied management theory, business communication and statistics for business decision-making. Other classes cover accounting, organizational theories and ethical and legal issues. Advanced coursework will cover nurse leadership, health care economics and professional role development. Finally, students will learn about health care policies, marketing and information systems.
Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Health Administration (MSN/MHA)
Students who wish to enter the field of health care management will gain the advanced nursing and business skills needed to make critical health care decisions. A MSN/MHA program will provide students with the knowledge needed to effectively examine and mange important health care issues and trends. The advanced nursing theory and advanced practice concepts will empower students to successfully work within the culture and scope of any health care organization. In turn, this nursing information is integrated with managerial content that teaches students the theoretical basics of nursing leadership.
For example, students will learn about measuring performance standards and implementing quality improvement initiatives. They will also learn how to monitor program data, evaluate outcomes and revise policies and procedures in order to meet accreditation and regulatory standards. Conversely, entrepreneurship in health care coursework will introduce how to develop new business opportunities through identifying market opportunities and needed financial and human resources.
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To summarize, all of these programs allow students to study advanced nursing with specialized knowledge. The three most popular joint degrees available with a master of science in nursing cover public health, business administration and health care administration.