Postgraduate Certificates

Postgraduate APRN Certificate Program

The purpose of the Postgraduate APRN Certificate Program is intended for nurses who currently have an advanced practice graduate degree in nursing (MSN, DNP, PhD) who wish to specialize in a different population foci other than that obtained/certified in the degree program. The program is designed to broaden the clinical knowledge in the new role change. Students who want to expand their role in a different population foci are expected to complete the didactic and clinical courses outlined in the post graduate APRN Certificate Program of Study for the specialty of interest. The following are prerequisite graduate level courses to be completed prior to or as part of the certificate program of study: 

  • Advanced physiology/pathophysiology
  • Advanced pharmacology
  • Advanced physical assessment

A Gap Analysis will be completed on the student transcripts to determine which courses can be transferred in and those that will need to be taken as part of the Post Graduate APRN Certificate Program.

APRN certificate specialty courses are offered in a hybrid immersion format and require attendance on the Lexington campus up to six days each semester (up to three days at start of term and up to three days at end of term).

Graduates of the Post Graduate APRN Certificate Program (Adult Gero Acute Care, Family, Psychiatric Mental Health, Pediatric Acute Care, and Pediatric Primary Care) are educated for licensure as a Nurse Practitioner by the Board of Nursing in your state and you may apply to take the national certification for your population foci in which you were educated.  See specific specialty information below.

Postgraduate Executive Leadership Certificate Program

The Postgraduate Executive Leadership (EL) Certificate is intended for nurses who currently have an advanced practice graduate degree in nursing (MSN, DNP, PhD) who wish to obtain competencies required for middle management and executive leaders.  The program is designed to provide nursing leaders with the knowledge needed to practice in a higher level leadership role in a healthcare organization or system. Students will take a series of leadership courses that will prepare them to be effective leaders in complex organizations and community/public health settings and to respond to the challenges of health care today.

Executive Leadership specialty courses are offered in a hybrid immersion format and require attendance on the Lexington campus up to two days each semester (up to one day at start of term and up to one day at end of term).

Graduates of the Executive Leadership specialty may be eligible to sit for the Nurse Executive - Advanced certification exam with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the Certified in Executive Nursing Practice exam with the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE). Eligibility for certification also requires meeting practice requirements for the respective agency.


Post Graduate Certificate Program Outcomes for both the APRN and Executive Leadership Certificate Programs include:

At the completion of the post-graduate certificate program, the graduate will demonstrate the following competencies:

  1. Integrate nursing science and theory with knowledge from ethics, the biophysical, psychosocial, analytical, and organizational sciences as the basis for nursing practice.
  2. Translate, apply and evaluate new science/evidence to guide improvements in practice and outcomes of care.
  3. Employ consultative and leadership skills with intra- and inter-professional teams to create change in health care and complex healthcare delivery systems.

Deadlines

The certificate application opens September 15 and closes January 15 for Fall/Spring enrollment.  Details can be found on the Certificate Admissions page.

APRN Specialties

1) Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Adult gerontology acute care nurse practitioners focus on assessment, diagnosis and management of acute health problems. Graduates are prepared to care for acutely and critically ill adults. As members of a multidisciplinary health care team, practitioners work in intensive care, progressive care, other hospital units, specialty clinics and specialty physicians’ offices. Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of this specialty will be eligible to sit for the Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner certification exam with the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner exam with the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN).

 

2) Family Nurse Practitioner

Family nurse practitioners provide primary care to patients of all ages and will become experts at diagnosing and treating common health problems, promoting wellness and helping patients learn effective self-care. They work in a variety of settings, including clinics, physician offices, urgent care and community health settings. Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of the Family Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialty will be eligible to sit for the Family Primary Care Nurse Practitioner certification exam with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) Certification Board.

 

3) Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

A pediatric acute care nurse practitioner specializes in the assessment, diagnosis and management of acute health problems for infants, children and adolescents. Graduates are prepared to care for acutely and critically ill children and adolescents. As members of a multidisciplinary health care team, practitioners work in intensive care, progressive care, other hospital units, specialty clinics and specialty physicians’ offices. Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of the Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner specialty will be eligible to sit for the Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner certification exam with the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB).

 

4) Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner

A primary care pediatric nurse practitioner specializes in health promotion and prevention/management of common acute illnesses and chronic conditions affecting children from birth through young adulthood.  The primary care pediatric nurse practitioner practices in a range of primary care settings utilizing their in-depth knowledge and experience in meeting the specialized physiologic and psychological needs of children within the context of the child's family, community, and environment. Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of the Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialty will be eligible to sit for the Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner certification exam with the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB).

 

5) Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioners (PMHNP) provide mental health care services across the lifespan. They utilize theoretical and clinical knowledge, competencies and experience to provide continuous and comprehensive mental health care to individuals, families and groups with complex psychiatric-mental health problems. This includes assessment, diagnosis and treatment across the continuum of care which may include in-patient facilities, out-patient clinics, home health, schools and correctional facilities. The care provided is holistic in nature and takes into consideration the strengths and opportunities of the individual, family, group, and community. The PMHNP uses both psychopharmacological interventions and nonpharmacological interventions, such as psychotherapy, in the care of the client.  In addition, PMHNPs work in nursing education, case management, consultation service, healthcare administration, and nursing research. Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of the PMHNP specialty will have the educational preparation to make application to sit for the PMHNP certification examination through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

 

6) Executive Leadership in Healthcare Certificate

The Executive Leadership (EL) program is practice based and prepares nursing leaders for multidimensional responsibilities in nursing practice and healthcare delivery. The curriculum emphasizes strategic leadership, organizational/systems, evidence-based management, financial, quality/safety, and information management expertise, and strategies for making health care policy impacts. Graduates will identify actual and emerging problems and will design aggregate-level health interventions. Students will take a series of leadership courses that will prepare them to be effective leaders in complex organizations/settings and to respond to the challenges of healthcare today. Competencies outlined in the American Organization of Nurse Leaders (AONL) Nurse Executive Competencies, the AONL Population Health Competencies, the American Nursing Credentialing Center Nursing Executive Certification domains of practice, and the AACN Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice are addressed in the program.

Download the sample curriculum here.

Graduates of the Executive Leadership specialty may be eligible to sit for the Nurse Executive - Advanced certification exam with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the Certified in Executive Nursing Practice exam with the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE).  Eligibility for certification also requires meeting practice requirements for the respective agency.


Course descriptions are available in the University Registrar’s Bulletin.