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Master's Degree

The Master of Science (MS) program is designed for registered nurses who seek to expand their knowledge and clinical expertise to assume advanced practice and leadership nursing roles.  

Advanced Practice Nursing Specialties

  • Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Advanced Public Health Nurse
We have transitioned the nurse practitioner specialty offering from the master’s to the Doctorate in Nursing Practice (DNP) to align with the national direction of the profession. Students interested in these specialties should pursue the school’s DNP program. UH Mānoa Nursing will continue to provide nurse practitioner and nursing executive leadership master's-level courses until all current students have completed their program. 

The Academic Program

The total number of credits required to receive the MS degree is determined by the national standard for each specialty and ranges from 30 to 45 credits.  Part-time and full-time study options are available.  Faculty provide individual student advising to develop a program of study that facilitates students’ progression through the program.

Please visit the master’s specialty pages for the Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist and Advanced Public Health Nurse for the curriculum pathway and additional information.

Master’s Degree Entry Pathways

Students can enter the MS degree program through one of these pathways.
  • RN with baccalaureate in nursing
  • Graduate Entry Program in Nursing – non-nurse with a baccalaureate degree in a field other than nursing
  • RN to MS – associate degree RN with a baccalaureate in another field than nursing

RN to MS Entry Pathway Program Description

The RN to MS Program (with non-nursing baccalaureate) is designed for  registered nurses (RNs) who are graduates of an accredited associate degree or diploma program and have a baccalaureate degree in an area other than nursing. The admission progression and graduation requirements are the same as for options within the master’s program. In addition all applicants to the MS program in the School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene must have successfully completed an undergraduate statistics course.
Applicants with a non-nursing baccalaureate should have evidence of baccalaureate level knowledge in research (NUR 363); community, public, and global health (NUR 450); and an integrative clinical practicum and leadership development (NUR 460). Competency in each of the three areas may have been obtained through course work, professional programs, and/or professional or life experience. 
The admitted student can petition to waive the coursework by submitting an experiential portfolio to demonstrate either coursework or experience in the required areas. Samples of evidence include: resume, transcripts for previous college coursework; course syllabi which outline course descriptions and learning objectives; professional training programs coursework that includes learning objectives. Guidelines for the experiential portfolio are available from the Nursing Office of Student Services.

Resource for Prospective Graduate Students


Ray Jarman, PhD
Graduate Program Advisor
School of Nursing & Dental Hygiene
Webster Hall 201

Phone: (808) 956-3519
Fax: (808) 956-5977


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