RN to MSN Bridge Program

Rn-To-Msn Bridge Program Class Requirements:

  • Total Classes: 19 Classes | 57 Credits
  • Bridge Classes: 7 Classes | 21 credits
  • Core Classes: 6 Classes | 18 credits
  • Specialization Classes: 6 Classes | 18 credits

Bridge Classes:

Students must take the following 7 bridge classes

Comprehensive Proctored Exam:

Students must complete a proctored examination.

Core Classes:

Students must take the following six classes.

The RN-To-MSN Bridge program requires that students choose one of the following specializations.

Administration and Management Specialization Classes:

Students must take the following six classes.

Nursing Education Specialization Classes:

Students must take the following six classes.

Comprehensive Proctored Exam:

Students must complete a proctored examination.


Class Descriptions and Required Textbooks

N490 - Issues and Trends in Professional Nursing (3 credits)Return to Top

Issues and Trends in Professional Nursing analyzes the impact of economic, demographic and technological forces on health care delivery, and the concerns relating to ethical, legal, and social issues that influence nursing practice. A historical background gives perspective to current nursing problems, and future trends are considered in terms of their impact on roles and practice. Issues impacting professional nursing are examined within a framework set forth by the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) five core competencies on quality and healthcare. The potential transformation of nursing practice in response to societal changes will be explored as well as the new opportunities these challenges have for career development.

Required Text Book:

  • Conceptual Foundations: The Bridge to Professional Nursing Practice, 5th Edition - 9780323068697
  • Professional Nursing Concepts: Competencies for Quality Leadership - 9781449649029
  • Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th ed - 978-1433805615

N491 - Concepts and Theories in Nursing (3 credits)Return to Top

Concepts and Theories in Nursing provides an introduction to theory and reasoning in nursing. The significance of theory for nursing as a profession is explored, thus providing students with a foundation for professional nursing practice and research. This course provides an overview of theory, theory development, important nursing theories and nursing theorists, as well as a method for critiquing theory. Students are guided to develop a foundation of reasoning skills that are necessary to integrate the components of knowledge, skills, values, meanings, and experiences into nursing practice.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Introduction to Theory and Reasoning in Nursing, 3th Edition - 9780781791038
  • Nursing Theories and Nursing Practice, 3th Edition - 9780803621688

N492 - Community Health Nursing I (3 credits)Return to Top

Community Health Nursing I provides a solid foundation in community and public health nursing concepts and interventions for individuals, families, and communities. Various roles of the nurse are explored in relation to primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention with target populations across the lifespan. The impact of political, economic, social, environmental, and cultural concerns on the health of populations is examined. Health promotion and disease prevention concepts are integrated into the multifaceted role of population-focused, community-oriented nursing practice.

Required Text Book:

  • Public Health Nursing: Population-Centered Health Care in the Community, 8e - 9780323080019
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N493 - Community Health Nursing II (3 credits)Return to Top

Community Health Nursing II builds upon the foundation provided in N492 Community Health Nursing I. From a theoretical and scientific framework, the concepts of epidemiology and disease transmission, comprehensive assessment of risk factors and health problems, program planning and intervention, environmental health, and collaboration with the interdisciplinary team are explored. The clinical component focuses upon developing and evaluating health promotion programs, family assessment, community assessment, and community-based home care within the context of the community. The nursing process is applied with the goal of promoting and preserving the health of populations. It is anticipated that sixty hours of community interaction will be required to complete this health promotion project.

Prerequisite: Admission into the RN-to-BSN or MSN program and completion of N492

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Public Health Nursing: Population-Centered Health Care in the Community, 8/e - 9780323080019

N494 - Essentials of Nursing Research (3 credits)Return to Top

Essentials of Nursing Research introduces the steps of the research process and the role of research in the practice of professional nursing. The methods and analytical tools required to critically evaluate nursing research literature are emphasized. Quantitative and qualitative approaches are highlighted. The focus of this course is on accessing and analyzing current nursing research literature to enable the professional nurse to apply research to current practice and issues. The skills of using technology to locate research information are developed, and the essential role of databases is explored. An understanding of ethical research practices is explored. This course prepares students to be critical consumers of evidence based research, and serves as a foundation for graduate-level nursing research courses.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Understanding Nursing Research: Building and Evidence-Based Practice, 5th Edition - 9781437707502

N495 - Health Assessment (3 credits)Return to Top

Health Assessment focuses on the complete health assessment, the nursing process, and its relationship to the prevention and early detection of disease in diverse patients across the life span. The process of health assessment is introduced, including: interviewing, history-taking, and physical assessment. Health assessment occurs within the context of the family and community and incorporates cultural and developmental variations and needs of the patient. Normal findings and cultural and age variations are emphasized. Incorporated throughout the course is the importance of communication and collaboration with patients and health care professionals. This course prepares the professional nurse to apply the concepts, knowledge and skills necessary to complete a health assessment for patients in all age groups, emphasizing the major elements, sequence and methodology of health assessment. This course also serves as a foundation for a graduate-level health assessment course.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Physical Examination and Health Assessment, 6th Edition - 9781437701517

N496 - Nursing Leadership and Management (3 credits)Return to Top

Nursing Leadership and Management provides broad and comprehensive coverage of leadership and management theories and processes that are critical to the creation of a work environment that is efficient, cost-effective, and committed to quality nursing care. The emphasis is on understanding the key skills employed by highly successful nurse leaders/managers such as critical thinking, effective communication, conflict resolution, successful delegation, team building, controlling resources, quality improvement, stress management, utilization of information technology, and leading change.  Students are engaged with opportunities to participate in learning activities that integrate knowledge about the activities, roles, and responsibilities of nurse managers/leaders and enable students to practice conceptual, technical, and interpersonal management and leadership skills. This course prepares the student for an entry position into the professional nurse manager role, and serves as a foundation for graduate-level leadership and management courses.

Required Text Book:

  • Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing: Theory and Application, 7th Edition - 9781608316854
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N502 - Health Care Systems (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course introduces students to the historical development, structure, operation, and current and future directions of the major components of the American health care delivery system. It reviews the historical evolution of the health care system's features and examines the ways in which health care services are organized and delivered, the influences that affect health care public policy decisions, factors that determine priorities for the allocation of health care resources, and the relationship of health care costs to measurable benefits. The course enables students to assess the role of organized efforts to influence health policy formulation, and the contributions of medical technology, research findings, and societal values on our evolving health care delivery system.

Prerequisite: You must complete all seven Bridge Courses and the Bridge Proctored Exam, before you can enroll in this course.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Health Care USA: Understanding its Organization and Delivery, 7th Edition - 9780763784584

N507 - Theoretical Foundations (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course begins by providing the foundation necessary to understand what nursing theory is and how it is used in nursing. The development, analysis, and evaluation of nursing theory will be emphasized. Grand and middle range theories will be discussed, with an overview of several of those currently in use. Shared theories from other disciplines --- such as the sociological, behavioral, and biomedical sciences— will also be included. The focus of this course is on the application of theory in nursing practice, nursing research, nursing administration and management, and nursing education.

Prerequisite: You must complete all seven Bridge Courses and the Bridge Proctored Exam, before you can enroll in this course.

Required Text Book:

N512 - Diverse Populations & Health Care (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course provides an in-depth study of cultural diversity, delineating ethnocultural congruent health-care practices in a pluralistic society. Assessment, planning, and interventions for health promotion and maintenance, illness and disease prevention, health restoration, and health policy are explored. The course examines the meanings of health and illness across ethnocultural groups and communities.

Prerequisite: You must complete all seven Bridge Courses and the Bridge Proctored Exam, before you can enroll in this course.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Transcultural Health Care: A Culturally Competent Approach, 4th Edition - 9780803637054

N517 - Research Design (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate nursing course focuses learning on evidence-based practice using the body of scientific knowledge in the areas of advanced nursing practice, nursing education, and nursing management. Learners develop an understanding of evaluating healthcare research and integrating the results into professional practice. The learner will develop a proposal that addresses a nursing or healthcare issue and provide a strategy to research the proposal. Content is discussed in terms of nursing research problems and application to clinical, academic, and management settings. Strategies for research utilization and dissemination in advanced nursing roles are developed.

Prerequisite: N507

Required Text Book:

  • Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Edition - 9781433805615
  • Advanced Nursing Practice: From Theory to Practice - 9780763765682

N520 - Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course focuses on the legal and ethical rights, responsibilities, and obligations of the practicing nurse in a changing health environment. It is intended to provide graduate nursing students with the theory, knowledge and application necessary to deal with pressing legal and ethical issues in nursing practice. Learners will develop a framework for working through increasingly complex legal and ethical issues that affect nurses. This framework and broadened perspective will help practitioners recognize and respond to dilemmas within diverse health care settings and nursing roles. This course will provide an overview of regulatory action and the legislative and judicial processes, enabling learners to become familiar with changes affecting the health care system such as patient rights, technological advances, and managed care. Within an ethical framework, ethical and professional issues affecting the individual, the practice of professional nursing, and the profession will be explored.

Prerequisite: You must complete all seven Bridge Courses and the Bridge Proctored Exam, before you can enroll in this course.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Legal and Ethical Issues in Nursing, 6th Edition - 9780133355871
  • Legal and Ethical Issues for Health Professionals - 3rd Edition - 9781449672119

N599 - Nursing Capstone (3 credits)Return to Top

The purpose of this individualized learning experience is to enable you to develop an original comprehensive nursing research project on a topic of professional or personal interest. This project-based course is intended to enable you to research, design and develop a substantial original applied project of your own authorship. This project is intended to encourage the application of theories, principles, and processes that you have studied in the Aspen graduate courses to an actual nursing related problem or issue of interest and relevance to you in your professional activities. Due to the extensive evaluation process, and the quantity of work and research involved, the Capstone course has a time limit of 10 weeks.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the last course of program.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N522 - Modern Organizations and Health Care (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course contains both theoretical content as well as an examination of processes involved in human behaviors in the healthcare organizational setting. Students will become more aware of the dynamics of group processes and acquire skills (i.e., motivation and leadership skills, conflict management, negotiation skills, etc.) to improve their group performance. This course examines (1) individual behaviors, (2) leadership, and (3) intrapersonal and interpersonal issues. Specific areas included in this course are diversity, perceptions and attitudes, communications, decision-making, power, leadership, motivation, stress and conflict management. Additionally, we will discuss strategies for facilitating learning experiences in a multicultural environment.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N522.

Required Text Book:

  • Organizational Behavior, Theory, and Design in Healthcare - 9780763742850
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N537 - Health Care Informatics (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course covers the history of healthcare informatics, current issues, basic informatics concepts, and health information management applications. Health informatics is the intersection of information science, computer science, and health care. It deals with the resources, devices, and methods required to optimize the acquisition, storage, retrieval, and use of information in health care settings. Health informatics tools include not only computers but also clinical guidelines, formal medical terminologies, and information and communication systems. This course focuses on the application of health care informatics from a nursing perspective. Based on the Foundation of Knowledge model, this course demonstrates how nursing and healthcare informatics relate to knowledge acquisition, knowledge processing, knowledge generation, knowledge dissemination, and feedback, all of which build the science of nursing.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N537.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Nursing Informatics and the Foundation of Knowledge - 9781449631746

N542 - Health Care Finance and Economics (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course will help nurse managers to understand and implement processes for management of financial issues in health care. Finance is a complicated and frequently confusing part of providing healthcare in the United States. Regulatory bodies, multiple payer sources, and complicated reimbursement schedules are just of few of the things that contribute to the state of healthcare finance in the 21st century. This course will introduce the concepts of reimbursement based on meeting the needs of the client rather than meeting the bottom line. Budgetary considerations, cash flow, cost to benefit analysis, and salaries are discussed in a forthright and comprehensive manner. Understanding how clients view healthcare and then understanding the role of healthcare payment will assist nursing leaders to make quality decisions that will benefit the patient and the facility. This course will assist the nurse manager to implement financial considerations into quality patient care.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N542.

Required Text Book:

  • Financial Management for Nurse Managers: Merging the Heart with the Dollar, 2nd Edition - 9780763757137
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N547 - Health Care Strategic Management and Planning (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course provides in-depth coverage of strategic thinking, strategic planning, and managing the strategic momentum. This course demonstrates how strategic managers can become strategic thinkers with the crucial skills to evaluate the changing environment, analyze data, question assumptions, and develop new ideas. Students will be introduced to methods to develop and document a plan of action through strategic planning and illustrate how, as managers attempt to carry out the strategic plan, they evaluate its success, learn more about what works, and incorporate new strategic thinking into future planning. Diverse strategic situations will be presented in case study format, which enhances the applicability of the concepts.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N547.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Strategic Management of Health Care Organizations (7th ed.) - 9781118466469

N550 - Nursing Administration Practicum I (3 credits)Return to Top

This practicum experience focuses on the analysis, synthesis, and application of principles and theories related to nursing administration and leadership. It is designed to provide the student with the opportunity to integrate theory in a context of the nurse executive’s role. During the precepted clinical experience, students observe, analyze, and participate in the role of the nurse executive in a designated health care delivery system. Experiences are designed and arranged by the student and approved by the faculty to provide executive level exposure to nursing administration operations and local business health policies and procedures. Within the asynchronous classroom environment, students will explore concepts pertinent to enactment the nurse executive role, with an emphasis on application of leadership/management theory, effective supervision, problem solving, organizational theory and structure, personnel and operations management, and communication. 80 clinical hours are required.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed all core courses prior to enrollment in N550. Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth specialization course prior to enrolling in N550

Required Text Book:

  • Beyond Leading and Managing: Nursing Administration for the Future - 9780323028776
  • Management and Leadership for Nurse Administrators, 6th Edition - 9781449614928
  • Scope and Standards for Nursing Administrators, 3rd Edition - 9781558102675
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N552 - Nursing Administration Practicum II (3 credits)Return to Top

This practicum experience focuses on the analysis, synthesis, and application of principles and theories related to nursing administration and leadership. It is designed to provide the student with the opportunity to integrate theory in a context of the nurse executive’s role. During the precepted clinical experience, students observe, analyze, and participate in the role of the nurse executive in a designated health care delivery system. Experiences are designed and arranged by the student and approved by the faculty to provide executive level exposure to nursing administration operations and local business health policies and procedures. Within the asynchronous classroom environment, students will explore concepts pertinent to enactment the nurse executive role, with an emphasis on application of leadership/management theory, effective supervision, problem solving, organizational theory and structure, personnel and operations management, and communication (Minimum 80 clinical hours for N550, and 100 clinical hours for N552).

Prerequisite: Students must complete all core and all other specialization courses prior to enrollment in N552.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Beyond Leading and Managing: Nursing Administration for the Future, 1st Edition - 9780323028776
  • Management and Leadership for Nurse Administrators, 6th Edition - 9781449614928
  • Scope and Standards for Nursing Administrators, 3rd Edition - 9781558102675

N555 - Advanced Pathophysiology A (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course focuses on developing advanced knowledge of human pathophysiological functions and responses to altered conditions, and includes integration of this knowledge into evidenced-based nursing practice. This course will prepare students to function in advanced practice and nurse educator roles by providing an in-depth understanding of pathophysiologic processes, enabling the student to predict clinical manifestations, select evaluative studies, initiate appropriate therapies, and anticipate potential complications. Insights into the underlying disease process will prepare the practitioner and educator for integration of new and innovative interventions and pharmacotherapeutics. Appropriate screening and diagnostic testing methods will also be included. Emphasis will be placed on important pathophysiological concepts needed to support the goals of Healthy People 2020 to improve clients’ quality of life and reduce health disparities.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N555

Required Text Book:

  • Clinical Applications of Pathophysiology: An Evidence Based Approach, 3rd Edition - 9780323045308
  • Title: Pathophysiology: The Biologic Basis for Disease in Adults and Children, 6th Edition - 9780323065849
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615

N556 - Advanced Pathophysiology B (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate-level course focuses on developing advanced knowledge of human pathophysiological functions and responses to altered conditions, and includes integration of this knowledge into evidenced-based nursing practice. This course will prepare students to function in advanced practice and nurse educator roles by providing an in-depth understanding of pathophysiologic processes, enabling the student to predict clinical manifestations, select evaluative studies, initiate appropriate therapies, and anticipate potential complications. Insights into the underlying disease process will prepare the practitioner and educator for integration of new and innovative interventions and pharmacotherapeutics.. Appropriate screening and diagnostic testing methods will also be included. Emphasis will be placed on important pathophysiological concepts needed to support the goals of Healthy People 2020 to improve clients’ quality of life and reduce health disparities. Advanced Pathophysiology B builds upon the foundation established in Advanced Pathophysiology A, and continues in a systems approach.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N556.

Required Text Book:

  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Clinical Applications of Pathophysiology: An Evidence Based Approach, 3rd Edition - 9780323045308
  • Pathophysiology: The Biologic Basis for Disease in Adults and Children, 6th Edition - 9780323065849

N580 - Issues in Nursing Education (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate level course explores foundational principles of the scholarship of teaching as the basis for examining the role of the nurse educator in academic, clinical, and community settings. Characteristics of learners with diverse learning styles and backgrounds are explored, with emphasis on assessing learning style preferences, critical thinking abilities, and literacy. Current trends in nursing education are examined, including the evolving role of technology, the influence of demographics, and educational policies that impact the learner, the teacher, and the learning environment. This course concludes with an analysis of legal and ethical issues that relate to client/staff education as well as the academic performance of students.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N580.

Required Text Book:

  • Nurse as Educator: Principles of Teaching and Learning for Nursing Practice - 9781449697501
  • Teaching in Nursing: A Guide for Faculty, 4th Edition - 9781455705511
  • Theory and Research for Academic Nurse Educators: Application to Practice - 9780763774134
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • National League for Nursing, The Scope of Practice for Academic Nurse Educators - 9781934758175

N582 - Teaching Strategies in Nursing Education (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate level course introduces the principles of teaching and learning among a diverse population of learners in academic and clinical environments. A variety of strategies to facilitate learning in cognitive, psychomotor and affective domains will be explored. Students will develop learning activities for the traditional, non-traditional and online learning environments in academic and clinical settings, utilizing evidence-based resources to support teaching and learning. Integrating educational technology within the learning environment is also a component of the course. Various methods for designing, conducting, and analyzing assessments and evaluations of learning outcomes will be appraised.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N582.

Required Text Book:

  • National League for Nursing, The Scope of Practice for Academic Nurse Educators - 9781934758175
  • Teaching strategies for nurse educators - 9780131790261
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • Nurse as Educator: Principles of Teaching and Learning for Nursing Practice - 9781449697501
  • Innovative Teaching Strategies in Nursing and Related Health Professions - 9781284030990

N584 - Curriculum Development, Implementation and Evaluation (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate level course focuses on designing nursing curriculum in diverse learning environments using evidence-based theories and concepts as well as relevant standards and criteria for evaluation. The relationship of nursing curriculum to the parent institution’s mission and philosophy is analyzed. Development, implementation and evaluation of a continuing education program for staff, patient or public education also is emphasized.

Prerequisite: Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fourth core course to enroll in N584.

Required Text Book:

  • Teaching in Nursing: A Guide for Faculty, 4th Edition - 9781455705511
  • Curriculum Development in Nursing Education, 2nd Edition - 9780763755959
  • Curriculum Development and evaluation in nursing, 2nd Edition - 9780826107220
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615
  • National League for Nursing, The Scope of Practice for Academic Nurse Educators - 9781934758175

N586 - Nursing Education Practicum (3 credits)Return to Top

This graduate level course focuses on the implementation of the nurse educator role through the application of theoretical teaching and learning concepts and strategies for a selected learner population in an academic or clinical setting. Emphasis is on effective communication and sensitivity to varying needs of the learner based on cultural and educational background. The nurse educator role will be analyzed and applied in collaboration with a master's prepared nurse educator preceptor. Evidence-based teaching strategies will be developed into a comprehensive teaching plan to engage learners in active learning and implemented to meet mutually determined outcomes. 180 clinical hours will be required.

Prerequisite: Students must complete all core courses prior to enrollment in N586. Students must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in the fifth specialization course prior to enrolling in N586.

Required Text Book:

  • National League for Nursing, The Scope of Practice for Academic Nurse Educators - 9781934758175
  • Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) - 9781433805615