Nurse Practitioner Requirements for Non-Nurses

Nurse practitioners (NPs) are advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) who often specialize in acute or primary care. To become one, the basic nurse practitioner requirements are to hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), earn specialty certification, and have a license to practice.  

Direct Entry Nurse Practitioner Program

If you have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree, there are programs designed to streamline the time it takes to complete a master’s degree in nursing. Known as a Direct Entry MSN program, this education option for non-nurses builds on your previous college education so you can earn a graduate-level degree in less than two years.

Many Direct Entry MSN programs follow a fast-paced blended learning format that combines online coursework with hands-on labs and clinicals. Keep in mind, however, that while accelerated in nature, these programs are in no way an academic shortcut.      

Nurse Practitioner Certifications

Once you earn your MSN, the next step is to pursue NP certification in a specialty area of practice as well as pass the corresponding national certification exam. You must also pass the exam to qualify for APRN licensure. Some of the areas that nurse practitioners specialize in include:

  • Family nurse practitioner, an APRN who provides comprehensive and continuous primary health care services to individuals and families across the lifespan.
  • Adult nurse practitioner, an APRN who provides primary care to adult patients with acute and chronic illness in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, private practices, and outpatient clinics. 
  • Pediatric nurse practitioner, an APRN who provides patient care to children of all ages, from routine well-child visits to illness treatment and prevention. 
  • Women’s nurse practitioner,an APRN who specializes in reproductive and gynecological health.
  • Geriatric nurse practitioner, an APRN who specializes in the complex health care needs of the aging patient population.

We partner with private nursing schools that offer Direct Entry MSN programs and opportunities to pursue certification in a variety of advanced practice specialty areas. So if you come from a non-nursing background and are interested in becoming a nurse practitioner, complete our online form to have an admissions representative contact you. 

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