Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing (2023)


Claudio, M.S. Nursing grad

Post Master's Certificates in Nursing

Nursing Education – Post-Master's Certificate

A specialty certificate in nursing education for nurses with MSNs....

A specialty certificate in nursing education for nurses with MSNs.

This program will prepare you to teach the next generation of nurses.

  • Time: 12 months.
  • Tuition: $4,367 per 6-month term, plus a one-time Health Professions Fee of $350.
  • Courses: 8 total courses in this program.

Some careers and jobs this degree will prepare you for:

  • Nurse Educator
  • Nursing Faculty
  • Program Director
  • Academic Clinical Nurse Educator

Hospitals and other facilities need nurse educators. Earn your Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing Education and step into a role inspiring and empowering caregivers. This program will prepare you to sit for the National League for Nursing Certified Nurse Executive (CNE) exam.

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Nursing Leadership and Management – Post-Master's Certificate

A certificate for registered nurses with a master's degree in nursing who...

A certificate for registered nurses with a master's degree in nursing who are ready for greater responsibility in a leadership and management role.

  • Time: 12 months.
  • Tuition:$4,367 per 6-month term, plus a one-time Health Professions Fee of $350 The cost to sit for the NAHQ Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ) exam is included in tuition.
  • Courses: 8 total courses in this program.

Sample careers and jobs this degree program will prepare you for:

  • Director of Nursing
  • Chief Nursing Officer
  • Quality Director
  • Clinical Nurse Leader
  • Project Manager

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of medical and health services managers to grow 17% by 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations.

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What is a Nursing Certificate Program?

A nursing certificate program is a non-degree program that gives nurses the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills in a specific area within their field. Certificate programs are generally shorter than degree programs, making it possible for most to earn their certificate in a year or less. Registered nurses can pursue a number of different certifications as part of their continuing education goals. Our certificate programs help you demonstrate your knowledge and expertise, provide superior patient care, and set yourself apart as a qualified candidate for leadership roles.

Our nursing certificate programs are tailored to nurses wanting to gain nursing care skills and credentials from an accredited institution to serve specific patient types or move into certain job roles. Our certifications are laser-focused on nurses who need additional credentials to expand career opportunities, increase earning power, and advance into management positions.

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Add the Specialty Skills That Take Your MSN Further

As an MSN-educated nurse, your work in health care changes lives every day. Now, you have more opportunity to advance your health care career and impact patient care with a post-master’s certificate in nursing. You already have critical skills and knowledge that have brought you to an impactful career—now you can add additional specialty skills that will allow you to go further.

At WGU, there are two post-master’s certificate nursing programs that help master’s degree-holding nursing professionals advance in or diversify their career paths:

  • Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Education
  • Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Leadership and Management

These post master nursing certificate programs allow current MSN-educated nurses to take on additional specialties, pivot their careers, and boost their résumés.

How Long Does a Post-Master’s Certificate Take?

6–12 Months

Utilize your knowledge, MSN degree, and experience to help you accelerate through courses at a pace that works for you and your life. You can continue to work full-time, taking on courses whenever it works for your busy schedule.

How Much Does a Post-Master’s Certificate Cost?

$4,367 per six-month term

At WGU, tuition is charged per six-month term, not per credit. So you can take as many credits as you are able during the term and not pay more. This allows students to save money the faster they are able to go through their courses.

Do I Need an MSN to Apply to a Certificate Program?


In order to apply for these post-master’s certificate programs, you must already hold an MSN degree. These specific nursing certificates are meant to be added on to your current MSN degree. They do not take the place of an advanced nursing degree.

Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Education

The Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Education program is designed for nursing professionals who want to move into nursing education or clinical instruction. If you are passionate about helping other nurses who are looking to advance their own careers, a nursing education career could be the perfect fit for you. This certificate prepares nurses who already hold a master’s degree to improve their career outlook and work in education roles such as preceptor, clinical instructor, and nursing educator.

The 16-competency unit (WGU's equivalent of credits) program can be completed in two terms (about 12 months). Students will learn about nursing course design, strategies to measure learning, emerging trends in nursing education, and more. This post-master’s certificate includes valuable field experience, which will prepare students for the real-world experiences that come with being a nurse educator.

Learn More About the Nursing Education Certificate

Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Leadership and Management

The Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing–Leadership and Management program is designed for nursing professionals who are ready to become managers and leaders in their hospital or clinic. This certificate qualifies master’s degree-holding nurses to advance into roles in nurse management, including job titles like director of nursing, chief nursing officer, and clinical nurse leader.

This accredited post-master’s certificate program contains 16 competency units (WGU's equivalent of credits) and can be completed in two terms (about 12 months).

In this program you will learn about strategic planning, business care, managing resources, and more. Field experience will be critical in preparing you for the rigors of management positions in nursing.

(Video) Carey Health Sciences | Post-Master's Certification: Nursing Education

Who Should Get a Post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing?

A post-master’s certificate in nursing is a great option for nursing professionals with an MSN degree to further their education and expand their certifications and career opportunities. To satisfy admission requirements, you will need to have an active, unencumbered RN license and have completed an MSN degree program from an accredited institution in order to qualify for a post-master’s certificate in nursing. Post-master’s certificates at WGU allow nurses who can fulfill the admission requirements to accelerate their current health care career progression or potentially make a shift to a different role within the field of nursing. Whether you’re considering an additional nursing program to become a nurse educator or expanding your options within nurse leadership, one of our post-master’s certificates in nursing can provide the skills and credentials you need to stand out.

Online. Nonprofit. Affordable.

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Benefits of a Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing

A post-master’s certificate in nursing can open up a number of career opportunities to nursing professionals, including:

  • A career change. If you’re a nurse with a master’s degree looking to shift to another career within the field of nursing, a certificate can help. Coursework and the credentials you will earn are critical in demonstrating that you are prepared for a different field of work inside nursing.
  • Increased job stability. Earning a post master certificate adds to your healthcare qualifications, and it can help improve your job security. The more qualified you are, the more indispensable you become, and the more value you can provide to your employer.
  • Increased earning potential. With an advanced nursing certificate, you can often qualify for higher-paying positions within the field of nursing. For instance, a chief nursing officer can make an average of more than $239,000 per year. You may also be able to increase your pay grade in your current position.


A post-master’s certificate allows individuals who already hold an MSN degree to gain additional skills and credentials that often qualify them for a new job or better trajectory within their healthcare careers. Certificates are less broad and more specialized than general master’s degrees. Post-master’s certificates provide specialty knowledge and training in a subject area the student has not already studied in their master's program, giving students the experience they need for a specific career.



Yes. A post-master’s certificate can provide a great return on investment. It not only increases your value in your current healthcare role, but also helps you learn additional skills and gain qualifications to progress into a higher-paying position with a better career outlook. Most graduates report having a 13–25% pay increase due to a post-master’s certificate. That bump in pay helps you see great ROI for your investment.

Why WGU?

A post master certificate in nursing from WGU has a number of benefits, including:

A Flexible Online Course Format

Our online courses are available anytime, anywhere. This allows you to study around your busy work schedule without worrying about going to class at a specific time and location.

A Learning Model That Allows You to Graduate Faster

Our competency-based model allows you to use your current skills and experience to move through your courses more quickly, instead of spending time on subjects or materials you already know or understand well.

Curriculum Designed for Immediate Application to Your Current Job

Our online competency-based model makes it easy to maintain your current work schedule while using what you’re learning in your day-to-day work. Our curriculum aligns with the latest trends and challenges in nursing and provides immediately actionable knowledge.

A Lower Tuition Cost Than Other Online Certificate Options

At WGU, our goal is to make education accessible and valuable. That’s why we work to make sure our tuition is as affordable as possible. Scholarships and federal aid also make our already-low tuition even more affordable for most students

Celebrating Nurse Leaders with a Special Scholarship

One thing the pandemic has shown us is just how much America needs nurses, especially nurse leaders. Named for Dr. Margaret McClure, the catalyst for today’s magnet hospital program, this $5,000 scholarship will be awarded to one recipient each quarter who has demonstrated activism or innovation in nursing that improves patient outcomes.

McClure Scholarship

(Video) FNU Presents: Guide to the Post-Graduate Certificate

Join Our Alumni Network

WGU has over 75,000 healthcare graduates who are dedicating their careers to helping others. When you attend WGU, you join an impressive group of healthcare professionals who are committed to changing lives. And 97% of our graduates say they would recommend WGU to someone else. Discover why so many healthcare professionals trust WGU.

How You'll Learn

Directly Applicable Programs

89% of WGU College of Health Professions graduates are employed in their degree field. Our industry-relevant curriculum is focused on helping ensure you are prepared for real-world scenarios in healthcare.What you’re learning today can be used in your daily work tomorrow. Our program teaches you relevant skills while letting you keep your job and working hours.

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Where WGU Nursing & Healthcare Graduates Work

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(Video) Carson-Newman Online Post-Master's FNP Certificate Testimonial - Tina Kelly


Is a post master's certificate worth it? ›

A post-master's certificate could be a worthwhile option if you have a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and wish to pursue a specialization. Whether you're looking to expand your current knowledge or seeking a career change, you can prepare for a different or enhanced role in health care with this credential.

What is the abbreviation for post master's certificate? ›

Post-master's certificate (PMC) students must successfully complete all didactic and clinical requirements of the desired area of practice.

What does post master's mean? ›

Post-master's certificates allow professionals who currently hold a master's degree to efficiently advance their skills, knowledge and industry expertise. Unlike degree programs, which are broad in focus, certificate programs concentrate on developing skills and competencies relevant to a particular career specialty.

Is a master's degree better than a certificate? ›

Graduate certificates and master's degrees can each lead to career advancement, whether you're looking for a new job or a promotion in your current role. While graduate certificates may be valuable within a particular field, master's degree credentials are typically more easily transferable between industries.

Does a Postgraduate Certificate count as a degree? ›

Is a Postgraduate Certificate equivalent to a degree? A Postgraduate Certificate (or Postgraduate Diploma) is at a level of study higher than a Bachelors degree. However, the fact that you don't have to write a dissertation (and you don't study as many credits) means they aren't the equivalent of a Masters degree.

What is the purpose of a Postgraduate Certificate? ›

A postgraduate certificate (also called a professional certificate) is an educational credential that provides students advanced skills in a specific area of specialisation. Basically, a postgraduate certificate gives you the eligibility to practise a profession.

Is Postgraduate Certificate equivalent to diploma? ›

PG Certificate

A specific area or skill improvement is tied to certification. It does not offer an overview of the subject matter, in contrast to a diploma programme. It offers advice on how to advance your career and potential income. It is less career-oriented and more skill-oriented.

Is Postgraduate Certificate same as diploma? ›

These courses in Canada are equivalent to the Post Graduate Diploma in India. Thus, many students refer to these programs as Post Graduate Diploma in Canada. Most Graduate Certificate programs can be completed in eight months (two semesters) to 1 year. Few Graduate Certificate programs are for 2 years as well.

Is post graduate equivalent to Masters? ›

(Almost) all Masters degrees are postgraduate qualifications. But, not all postgraduate qualifications are Masters degrees. In fact, a wide range of other courses are available.


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