Ways to Study
- | Online
Questions about the application process? Click here for details.
The Post-graduate Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) Certificate Program is designed to provide the opportunity for MSN or DNP-prepared APRNs to pursue education and training in a new population area for career expansion or role change. Post-graduate certificate students must successfully complete all course requirements of the selected population area. Graduates of the program are eligible to take a national certification exam appropriate to their population area. Program completion and national certification qualify graduates to apply for approval to practice in North Carolina.
Online and Part-time Program
- Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Plan of Study
(online with on-campus immersions)
- Watch the recorded information session
The Post-Graduate AG-ACNP Certificate Program provides master’s or doctorally-prepared NPs with the additional education and training needed to manage adolescent to geriatric patients who have complex, unstable conditions, including the need for critical care. This program focuses on preparing graduates who are advanced practice leaders and interprofessional team members who provide care to critically ill patients and their families. Clinical experiences are supported by faculty and occur across a variety of practice settings, including but not limited to Intensive Care Units (Medical, Cardiac, Cardiovascular/Thoracic, Neurological, etc), hospitalist services, inpatient oncology, and other inpatient specialty services. Intensive online engagement with faculty and peers, state-of-the-art simulation techniques, and on-campus immersions maximize the learning experience.
Graduates are eligible to take the American Nurses’ Association (ANCC) or the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) board certification examination for the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner.
On-campus and Part-time
Who May Apply?
Educational Background: An earned MSN or DNP from an NLNAC or CCNE accredited program conferred prior to matriculation.
National Certification: All applicants must hold current certification as an APRN and eligible for approval to practice in NC. AGACNP applicants must be prepared as an FNP or AGPCNP.
- AGACNP applicants: Specialty certification (CCRN, CEN, CFRN; Emergency, Cardiology, Oncology NP) and membership in the American Association of Critical Care Nurses are strongly encouraged. Applicants must have at least 6 months of full-time acute care nursing experience in the past 2 years.
GPA Requirement: Applicants are expected to have earned a 3.0 or better in MSN or DNP coursework.
- All applicants must be admissible to all previously attended colleges/universities.
- If you have been declared academically ineligible and as such are unable to return to any previous institutions, you must contact that institution and seek documentation that reinstates your eligibility or your application cannot undergo review. Copies of all correspondence regarding your reinstatement request must be submitted in the application.
- If your final institutional cumulative GPA is below 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale), please upload documentation of your eligibility to return to that institution to NursingCAS under Program Documents as “Other.”
How Does the Program Work?
The Lead Faculty in a population area will review all prior graduate coursework completed by admitted applicants to develop an individualized plan of study. The education requirements for NP programs and national NP certification eligibility requirements have changed over time. An applicant’s national certification status does not provide sole evidence of meeting NP core courses and required supervised hours. All transcript(s) and associated course syllabi (source documents) for the 3 P’s will be reviewed upon matriculation. Each course must be comparable to what is currently offered in our existing advanced practice program. Additional coursework or alternative coursework may be required based on the gap analysis.
If admitted applicants have never practiced as an APRN, they will need to demonstrate successful completion of advanced pathophysiology (lifespan), advanced pharmacology (lifespan), and advanced health assessment courses in the past three years. If admitted applicants have not practiced as an APRN in greater than two years, they will be required at a minimum to retake advanced pharmacology.
All plans of study are also reviewed and approved by the Associate Dean of the MSN/DNP Programs.
How Long Does it Take to Complete the Program?
Students in the post-graduate primary care NP certificate programs are admitted in the fall semester each year; however, some students may not matriculate until spring depending on their individualized plan of study. The primary care NP options can be completed in two academic years including one summer.
Students in the post-graduate AGPCNP certificate program complete the program in twelve months or one academic year (fall, spring, summer).
How Much Does the Program Cost?
When Should I Apply?
Admission to the Post-graduate Certificate Program is offered in the summer (AGACNP only) and fall (Primary Care certificate programs only) and requires submitting an application with NursingCAS and a supplemental application to UNC. Please see above for specific deadlines.