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Master's Degree Programs in Nursing Administration

Find out what you'd learn in a master's-level nursing administration program. Review the prerequisites for admission, which typically include a nursing license. Check the availability of online programs in this field, and get info on the job outlook and salary potential for jobs in the nursing administration field.

What Do I Need to Apply to a Master's Degree Program in Nursing Administration?

Typically, in order apply to a master's degree program in nursing administration, you must hold a bachelor's degree in nursing and be a registered nurse. Some programs might require you to have at least one year's nursing experience. Other programs also might require a telephone interview before you're accepted.

Prerequisites Bachelor's degree and nursing licensure is required; some institutions may require an interview and/or previous work experience
Key Topics Discussed Financial management, health care law, leadership, health policy, research
Learning Environment Traditional classroom and distance learning degree programs are available; both kinds of programs have clinical requirements
Average Salary (2018) $113,730 (for all medical and health services managers)*
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 20% growth (for all medical and health services managers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Will I Learn?

Master's degree programs in nursing administration teach you how to effectively manage and lead employees while adhering to health care policies and regulations. Classes also usually teach you the business and financial knowledge needed to run a health care organization or department. Topics that you may learn about in a nursing administration program include:

  • Research methods
  • Leadership in nursing
  • Health care law
  • Nursing management
  • Financial management
  • Nursing theory
  • Health policy

Programs usually end with a final project on a nursing topic. A nursing administration program also can end with a practicum spent interning or assisting at a health care facility.

Can I Enroll in an Online Program?

You can enroll in one of several online nursing administration master's degree programs. Lectures are presented through video and audio presentations. Courses usually can be taken entirely online, but some programs may require clinical portions of the program to be conducted at a hospital or facility near your home.

Technology requirements for the online program often include a high speed Internet connection, a microphone, speakers and a Web camera. Online programs might require the use of Adobe Flash Player and Adobe Reader.

What Jobs Are Available?

A master's degree program in nursing administration prepares you for mid-level administrative and managerial roles in the health care field. You can work in the public health care sector or for an independent health services company. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that medical and health services managers with a master's degree and strong management knowledge should have favorable job prospects (www.bls.gov). According to the BLS, medical and health services managers made an annual average salary of $113,730 in 2018.