The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) Online Nurse Practitioner Programs – FNP, PMHNP

The School of Leadership and Advanced Nursing Practice under the College of Nursing and Health Professions through the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice (BSN to DNP) and Post-Master’s Certificate programs with two specializations: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) and Family Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (FPMHNP). Students are required to come to the Hattiesburg, Mississippi campus once per semester for the didactic courses. Students complete clinical preceptorships at approved facilities local to them.

The USM advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) programs prepare nurses for leadership roles in administrative, clinical, and educational settings. USM takes a scholarly research-based approach to nursing practice. Dedicated faculty members are committed to the vision and mission of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences which include the promotion of excellence in research, service, and teaching, and the advancement of health through interdisciplinary research and quality academic programs.

DNP students are required to maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA throughout the programs with no more than six hours at a grade of C. In addition, DNP students must pass a comprehensive exam and complete a doctoral project in order to graduate. All applicants, regardless of their state of residence, must gain RN licensure in the state of Mississippi.

Post-Master’s Certificate students may repeat one course once if a grade of less than a B is earned. Certificate students must also maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA and pass a comprehensive exam to graduate. As well, a transcript analysis of certificate applicants is completed in order to determine the exact courses needed to earn the certificate.

Graduates of the BSN to DNP and certificate programs are eligible to sit for their specific national certification exam through the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).

The USM nurse practitioner programs are accredited through the Commission on Collegiate Nursing (CCNE). In addition, they follow the APRN Consensus Model and the competencies from the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties (NONPF) Competencies for Nurse Practitioners. USM is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and is located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.

What to Expect from the University of Southern Mississippi Online Graduate Nursing Programs

Admission Requirements: Application materials for both programs include an online graduate application and fee plus a supplemental nursing application, official transcripts, three letters of reference, a professional resume or CV, a cover letter, a personal statement, proof of CPR certification, proof of a recent health examination and vaccinations, and successful background check and drug screening. Applicants must also gain an RN license in the State of Mississippi prior to starting the program.

Those whose first language is not English must submit proof of English language proficiency. The following is also required for each program path:

  • BSN to DNP: Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree in nursing (BSN) from a nationally accredited program with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and an unencumbered RN license. The GRE is required from within the previous five years. Completion of advanced graduate statistics is required with a grade of B or higher. In addition, one year of full-time RN work experience is required within the past five years. An online or telephone interview will be required.
  • Post-Master’s Certificates: Applicants must hold an MSN from a nationally accredited program, with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and an unencumbered RN license. Applicants must have completed graduate-level coursework in advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, health promotion, nurse practitioner role, and advanced health assessment for nurse practitioners. Any gap courses must be completed before the NP specialty courses.

State Restrictions: The University of Southern Mississippi is an NC-SARA participant and is eligible to offer its nursing programs in all 50 states. Students should verify with the College of Nursing and Health Professions as well as their state licensing board to determine if the program meets state requirements for NP licensure.

Study Plan: The BSN to DNP program begins in the Fall and can be completed in three years. Both full and part-time plans are available. Students have up to eight years to complete the DNP. Approximately six to nine campus visits are required–one per semester.

The Post-Master’s Certificate program also begins in the Fall and can be completed in four semesters for the FNP specialization and five semesters for PMHNPs. Certificate students must come to campus four to five times throughout the program–once per semester. Clinicals for both programs are completed locally.

BSN to DNP Curriculum: The BSN to DNP program comprises 71 credits for FNPs and 73 credits for FPMHNPs, plus the required clinical hours and DNP hours. Courses for both specializations include Advanced Practice Nurse Role; Health Promotion and Disease Prevention for APRNs; Advanced Pathophysiology for Advanced Practice; Advanced Pharmacology for Advanced Practice; Advanced Health Assessment for Advanced Practice Nurses; Transition to Practice Seminar; Role Development and Advanced Practice Nursing; Methods for Evaluating Evidence-Based Practice; Practice Inquiry I: Information Systems and Technology; Population Health and Epidemiology; Practice Inquiry II: Translating Research into Practice; Policy and Politics in Health Care; Doctor of Nursing Practice Project; Quality and Leadership in Healthcare Systems; and Economics and Finance in Healthcare Systems.

  • FNP: Specialty courses include Family Nurse Practitioner Internship; Family Nurse Practitioner Diagnosis and Management I-II; Family Nurse Practitioner Practicum I-II; FNP Diagnosis and Management in Women and Children; and FNP Diagnostics and Procedures.
  • Family PMHNP: Specialty courses include Psychopharmacology; Psychobiological Theories and Assessment in Advanced Psychiatric Nursing; Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Diagnosis and Management with Individuals; FPMHNP Practicum I-III; and FPMHNP Diagnosis and Management of Groups and Families.

Post-Master’s Certificate Curriculum: The Post-Master’s Certificate program comprises up to 26 credits for the FNP specialization and 28 credits for the FPMHNP track, plus clinical hours. Note that transcript analysis is done on an individual basis to determine the need for the APRN graduate coursework. Any gap courses must be completed before pursuing the certificate. Study plans follow specialty courses as listed above for the BSN to DNP program.

Online Experience: Online courses at USM are delivered through the Canvas online Learning Management System (LMS). Courses are asynchronous with recorded lectures, assignments, and assessments. Exams may be proctored through the Office of Online Learning. Collaboration takes place through interactive apps, email, and discussion boards. Online students have access to a full range of student services including library and bookstore services, faculty office hours, academic advising, career counseling, and technical support.

On-Site Requirements: BSN to DNP students may need to come to the Hattiesburg, MS campus six to nine times throughout their program. Post-Master’s Certificate students come to campus four to five times throughout their program. Students should verify the number of campus visits with the College of Nursing and Health Professions. All other coursework is online and clinicals are completed local to the student.

Paying for University of Southern Mississippi Online Graduate Nursing Programs

The online graduate nursing programs through the University of Southern Mississippi cost $494.12 per credit plus fees for both residents and non-residents. Travel expenses for campus visits are not included in tuition costs. Prospective students should inquire with the USM College of Nursing and Health Professions for current tuition prices and fees.

USM may offer unsubsidized federal student loans to graduate students according to the FAFSA, as well as other scholarships and aid to graduate students. Graduate nursing students are also encouraged to inquire with their employers as to the option of a tuition reimbursement program. Other opportunities for funding may include outside loans, scholarships, and grants through community and individual organizations.

University of Southern Mississippi

USM offers BSN to DNP and Post-Master\'s Certificate programs with affordable tuition for both residents and non-residents, 4 to 9 campus immersions, and local clinicals to residents of all 50 states.

APRN Programs

BSN to DNP – Family Nurse Practitioner
BSN to DNP – Psychiatric Mental Health NP
Post-Graduate Certificate – Family Nurse Practitioner
Post-Graduate Certificate – Psychiatric Mental Health NP

Campus Address

118 College Drive
Hattiesburg, Mississippi 39406

University of Southern Mississippi – BSN to DNP – Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Essentials

Degree Level

DNP – Doctor of Nursing Practice

Specialization

FNP – Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Start Dates

Fall

100% Online?

No

Campus Visits Required

6

Credits Needed to Graduate

71

Program Accreditation

CCNE – Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

Program Admissions

Level of Education Required?

BSN – Bachelor of Science in Nursing

GRE or GMAT Required?

No GRE Required

GPA Required?

3.0 or higher

State Restrictions? (Will Not Accept From…)

CA, CT, DE, FL, HI, KY, MA, NJ, NY, NC, PA, SC, UT, WI

Program Tuition

Credit Hours

71

Cost Per Credit Hour (state resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (state resident)

$35,082.52

Cost Per Credit Hour (non-resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (non-resident)

$35,082.52

University of Southern Mississippi – BSN to DNP – Psychiatric Mental Health NP

Program Essentials

Degree Level

DNP – Doctor of Nursing Practice

Specialization

PMHNP – Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Start Dates

Fall

100% Online?

No

Campus Visits Required

6

Credits Needed to Graduate

73

Program Accreditation

CCNE – Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

Program Admissions

Level of Education Required?

BSN – Bachelor of Science in Nursing

GRE or GMAT Required?

Yes, GRE Required

GPA Required?

3.0 or higher

State Restrictions? (Will Not Accept From…)

CA, CT, DE, FL, HI, KY, MA, NJ, NY, NC, PA, SC, UT, WI

Program Tuition

Credit Hours

73

Cost Per Credit Hour (state resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (state resident)

$36,070.76

Cost Per Credit Hour (non-resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (non-resident)

$36,070.76

University of Southern Mississippi – Post-Graduate Certificate – Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Essentials

Degree Level

Post-Master Certificate – Post-Graduate (Post-MSN) Nursing Certificate

Specialization

FNP – Family Nurse Practitioner

Program Start Dates

Fall

100% Online?

No

Campus Visits Required

4

Credits Needed to Graduate

26

Program Accreditation

CCNE – Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

Program Admissions

Level of Education Required?

MSN – Master of Science in Nusing

GRE or GMAT Required?

No GRE Required

GPA Required?

3.0 or higher

State Restrictions? (Will Not Accept From…)

CA, CT, DE, FL, HI, KY, MA, NJ, NY, NC, PA, SC, UT, WI

Program Tuition

Credit Hours

26

Cost Per Credit Hour (state resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (state resident)

$12,847.12

Cost Per Credit Hour (non-resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (non-resident)

$12,847.12

University of Southern Mississippi – Post-Graduate Certificate – Psychiatric Mental Health NP

Program Essentials

Degree Level

Post-Master Certificate – Post-Graduate (Post-MSN) Nursing Certificate

Specialization

PMHNP – Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Program Start Dates

Fall

100% Online?

No

Campus Visits Required

4

Credits Needed to Graduate

25

Program Accreditation

CCNE – Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

Program Admissions

Level of Education Required?

MSN – Master of Science in Nusing

GRE or GMAT Required?

No GRE Required

GPA Required?

3.0 or higher

State Restrictions? (Will Not Accept From…)

CA, CT, DE, FL, HI, KY, MA, NJ, NY, NC, PA, SC, UT, WI

Program Tuition

Credit Hours

25

Cost Per Credit Hour (state resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (state resident)

$13,835.36

Cost Per Credit Hour (non-resident)

$494.12

Estimated Total Tuition (non-resident)

$13,835.36

Tuition is calculated based on credits, at the published tuition rate. Rates may change, so please check here for the latest tuition information. For programs with variable tuition rates, we use the rates for part-time students. “Resident” and “non-resident” refer to the student’s school-recognized state residency status. Tuition number represents the cost of tuition for the entire program, not per semester or year. Estimated total tuition does not include additional fees.

Sara Navratil

Sara Navratil

Writer

Sara Navratil is a freelance writer and a Certified Canfield Success Principles Trainer. She’s the owner of Sara Liza Life, a company dedicated to helping people rewrite their lives. She enjoys researching and writing about healthcare-related topics, including information on online NP programs. When not working she likes to read, bake, and spend time with her family.