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Graduate Nursing: MSN

JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions Graduate Program

Alverno's teaching approach focuses on outcomes in which we measure how you perform, not how well you do on a test. Our Master of Science in Nursing program integrates the core skills of your profession into every course. And our approach focuses on relevant, experiential, active learning that replicates professional or real-world scenarios.

We also know that you lead a very busy life and your time is precious. That's why Alverno offers its master's degree in an every-other weekend schedule, eight weekends a semester. Faculty members are accessible because they understand the challenges of your busy lifestyle. You will find that although an Alverno graduate degree is rigorous, it is also reasonable, accommodating and highly rewarding.

Lastly, we recognize that our students are professionals, with experiences that should count for something. We challenge you to bring your experiences into the classroom, engage with your colleagues, and participate in building a rich, learning environment.


 Graduate Nursing Programs

Masters of Science in Nursing Post Master's Certificates  Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • MSN-Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  • MSN-Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
  • MSN-Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP)
  • MSN-Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (AGPCNP)
  • MSN-Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP)
  • MSN-Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (AGPCNP)
  • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP)
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Graduate Nursing Program Learning Outcomes 

The outcomes of the graduate curriculum are that the graduate will:

  • Exhibit mastery of communication skills in multiple modes to build crucial inter-professional team relationships that promote collaboration to ensure safe and effective outcomes.
  • Provide holistic, patient-focused, evidence-based care in the role of an advanced practice nurse.
  • Evaluate and apply informatics using current and evolving technology to facilitate and enhance optimal clinical care and organizational decision-making.
  • Skillfully engage in collaborative and trans-disciplinary leadership to (re)construct strategies for innovative and transformative change in complex healthcare settings.
  • Synthesize current and emerging science and theory to design ethical and cost-effective approaches to care that consider the uniqueness of individuals, families, communities and populations.

 Graduate Nursing Program Leaders


Patti Varga PhD RN CNE, Joanne McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professionals Dean, 414-382-6303

Diane Duffy PhD RN, Associate Dean of Graduate Nursing Studies, 414-382-6275

Diane Duffy PhD RN, Doctor of Nursing Practice Program Chair, 414-382-6275

Joann Archer, Clinical Nurse Specialist Program Coordinator, 414-382-6482

Luanne Wielichowski, Family Nurse Practitioner Program Chair, 414-382-6285

Rebecca Sobanski, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program Chair, 414-382-6497

Laurie Kunkel-Jordan, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program Chair, 414-382-6300


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  • Nursing Inquiry
  • Healthcare Systems
  • Advanced Practice Roles & Theory
  • Ethics in Advanced Practice
  • Population-based Health
  • Advanced Physiology & Pathophysiology
  • Advanced Health & Physical Assessment
  • Advanced Pharmacotherapeutics
  • Capstone 1
  • Capstone 2

Additional courses for cns

  • Theory & Practicum 1: Individuals & Populations
  • Theory & Practicum 2: Program Development and Evaluation
  • Theory & Practicum 3: Leadership for Systems Improvement

Additional courses for FNP

  • Theory & Practicum 1: Advanced Primary Care Management of Middle-Aged & Older Adults
  • Theory & Practicum 2: Advanced Primary Care Management of Women & Children
  • Theory & Practicum 3: Advanced Primary Care Management of Vulnerable Populations

Additional courses for pmhnp

  • Helping Relations
  • Advanced Psychopharmacology
  • Theory & Practicum 1: Advanced Mental Health Management of Adults
  • Theory & Practicum 2: Advanced Mental Health Management of Children, Adolescents & Geriatric Populations
  • Theory & Practicum 3: Advanced Mental Health Management of the Seriously Ill and Substance Addicted Populations



The baccalaureate degree in nursing program, master’s degree program, and post-graduate APRN certificate programs at Alverno College are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC, 20001, 202-887-6791.

To view accreditation, click here

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Alverno College is seeking accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education


The JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions is also approved by the Wisconsin Board of Nursing. Alverno College maintains continuous accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.