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    Columbia Campus
  Jun 13, 2024
2009-2010 Graduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) 
2009-2010 Graduate Studies Bulletin (Archived Copy) [Archived Catalog]

Community Mental Health and Psychiatric Nursing, M.S.N.

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Admission College of Nursing 
Degree Requirements  

The M.S.N. offers the following majors: administration in nursing, clinical nursing, community mental health and psychiatric nursing, and health nursing. The community mental health and psychiatric nursing major offers three emphasis areas: adult psychiatric nurse practitioner, child/adolescent psychiatric nurse practitioner, and psychiatric clinical nurse specialist.  Also offered is an M.S.N./M.P.H. dual degree option with the Arnold School of Public Health.


The admission process attempts to identify individuals who have a high probability of successfully completing the program. All factors are considered in combination. Specific requirements include:

  1. a bachelor of science in nursing degree from a program that is nationally accredited;
  2. transcripts of all previous college studies (The average undergraduate GPA for recently admitted students was greater than 3.25; the average nursing GPA was greater than 3.35.);
  3. general GRE verbal and quantitative scores or Miller Analogies Test score (The average GRE scores for recently admitted students were greater than 475 verbal and 535 quantitative. The average MAT score was greater than 421.)
  4. registered nurse licensure in South Carolina or possession of an unencumbered license in the state in which clinical practice will occur;
  5. a completed application to The Graduate School with the College of Nursing supplement;
  6. two references written by master’s or doctorally prepared nurses who are qualified to evaluate nursing practice performance and academic potential;
  7. resume or cv.

Course planning with the student’s advisor is required before registration. All students are required to submit a Master’s Degree Program of Study form to the Office of Graduate Studies at the earliest convenient date (no later than the end of the first year). These forms may be obtained in the Office of Graduate Studies and must be completed with the assistance of the academic advisor. The original will be forwarded to the dean of The Graduate School for approval. Copies of the approved program will be kept in the student’s permanent file in the Office of Graduate Studies, College of Nursing.

Degree Requirements

Requirements for earning the M.S.N. degree include:

  1. completion of an approved program of courses;
  2. completion of an applied research course, NURS 791 (3), or a thesis, NURS 799 (6);
  3. a GPA of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) on all courses attempted for graduate credit and all courses numbered 700 and above.
  4. a GPA of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) an all courses on the approved program of study.


Objectives: Students in the master’s programs of the college acquire a) knowledge and skills required for advanced nursing practice, b) the ability to apply theory and research in practice, and c) leadership skills for advanced nursing practice.

The curriculum leading to the degree of M.S.N. is divided among 9 hours of core courses required of all nursing majors, 15-22 hours in the emphasis area of the major, 0-9 hours of electives, and 3-6 hours in research, which consist of either an applied research course, NURS 791 (3), or a thesis, NURS 799 (6).

This curriculum prepares nurses to provide advanced psychiatric/mental health nursing as either practitioners and/or clinical specialists. Psychiatric/mental health majors may focus on adult or children/adolescents.

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