Dec 02, 2023  
2020-21 Graduate Catalog 
2020-21 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Master of Science in Nursing

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Master of Science in Nursing

Jamie Hansen Clinical Associate Professor
Teresa Kaul Clinical Associate Professor/Nursing Department Chair
Karie Ruekert Kobiske Clinical Associate Professor/Director of MSN Program

Carroll University graduate nursing program is designed to offer advanced nursing education with focus on superior clinical and academic knowledge and skills. Carroll University offers a graduate program leading to a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. The Carroll University MSN program emphasis is the Nurse Educator. Carroll University MSN program was designed to fit conveniently with schedules for working nurses.

  • Eight-week courses meet one night per week
  • Hybrid delivery with online and in-person courses
  • Clinical education may be completed in your current work setting
  • Educational practicum may be completed with the nursing faculty at the University


Carroll University is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The baccalaureate in Nursing Program at Carroll is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (NE). The NE is a nationally recognized accrediting agency devoted exclusively to the evaluation of baccalaureate and graduate programs in nursing education. Carroll’s nursing program received accreditation December 2010 through December 2020 with no deficiencies.

Carroll University has received approval from the Higher Learning Commission to offer the MSN Degree-Nurse Educator focus.

The Carroll University MSN program has applicant status with CCNE and will host an on-site accreditation visit in one year per CCNE accreditation procedures. The master’s degree program in nursing program at Carroll University is pursuing initial accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202.887.6791. Applying for accreditation does not guarantee that accreditation will be granted.

The Higher Learning Commission
North Central Association
230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60604
Phone: 800.621.7440
Department of Regulation and Licensing
Wisconsin State Board of Nursing
4822 Madison Yards Way
Madison, WI 53705
Phone: 608.266.2112

National League for Nursing (NLN) NLN Accrediting Commission
The Watergate
2600 Virginia Ave NW, 8th Floor
Washington DC 20037
Phone: 800.669.1656

American Association of Colleges
1818 R Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
Phone: 202.387.3760
Commission on Collegiate of Nursing Education (CNE)
655 K Street NW., Suite 750
Washington, DC 20001
hone: 202.887.6791

Mission and Program Outcomes

The MSN program builds on Carroll University’s mission of providing a superior education, rooted in its Presbyterian and liberal arts heritage, and draws upon its Christian tradition to prepare all students for vocational success, lifelong learning and service in a diverse and global society. The mission of the Carroll University Department of Nursing is to educate professional nurses at the associate, baccalaureate and master’s level.

The MSN program builds on baccalaureate education and prepares graduates for advanced roles within the discipline of nursing. The goals of the Carroll University MSN degree NE emphases are to develop MSN’s who can:

  1. Exercise leadership skills and manage collaborative efforts in their practice setting.
  2. Translate evidence into practice.
  3. Build interdependent relationships with other professions to improve care and advance learning.

MSN Program Outcomes

Graduates of the MSN program will:

  1. Integrate scientific findings from nursing, biopsychosocial sciences, public health, quality improvement, and organizational sciences for the continual improvement of nursing care across diverse settings.
  2. Develop leadership skills with an emphasis on ethical and critical decision-making, effective working relationships, and a systems-perspective.
  3. Apply quality improvement principles within an organization.
  4. Apply research outcomes within the practice setting.
  5. Utilize patient-care technologies to deliver and enhance care.
  6. Intervene at the system level to develop policy and employ advocacy strategies to influence health and health care.
  7. Collaborate with other health professionals to manage and coordinate care.
  8. Integrate organizational, client-centered, and culturally appropriate concepts in the planning, delivery, management, and evaluation of population care and services to individuals, families, and aggregates/identified populations.
  9. Demonstrate an advanced level of understanding of nursing and relevant sciences, integrating this knowledge into practice


Applications and credentials for admission to the Master of Science in Nursing-Nurse Educator program must be submitted for processing to the Carroll University Office of Admission. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and as decisions are made on applications, applicants are notified through the Office of Admission.

Program Prerequisites:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from an accredited program (NLNAC or CCNE)
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4.0 scale)
  • An undergraduate introductory level statistics course or equivalent
  • Current unrestricted Wisconsin RN licensure.

Program Admission Process:

Applicants must comply with all admission requirements listed above. Selection decisions will be based on submission and evaluation of:

  1. Graduate Studies Application
  2. All official post-secondary transcripts, including both graduate and undergraduate course work
  3. Two letters of reference (work supervisors, professional colleagues, faculty)
  4. Statement of purpose defining goals/objectives for the pursuit of graduate studies
  5. Current resume or curriculum vita

Technical Standards

Technical Standards for Carroll University Nursing Students

Professional nursing students are expected to demonstrate the ability to meet the demands of a professional nursing career. Certain functional abilities are essential for the delivery of safe, effective nursing care. An applicant to the Master of Science in Nursing Program must meet and maintain the following technical standards for progression throughout the program. Students unable to meet these technical standards will not be able to complete the program. Students shall notify the program of any change in their ability to meet technical standards.

The technical standards include but are not limited to the following:

General Ability

The student is expected to possess functional use of the senses of vision, touch, hearing and smell so that data received by the senses is integrated, analyzed and synthesize in a consistent and accurate manner. The student is expected to possess the ability to perceive pain, pressure, temperature, position, vibration and movement in order to effectively evaluate patients. A student must be able to respond promptly to urgent situations.

Observational Ability

The student must have the ability to make accurate visual observations and interpret them in the context of clinical/laboratory activities and patient care experiences. The student must be able to document these observations accurately.

Communication Ability

The student must communicate effectively verbally and non-verbally to obtain information and explain that information to others. Each student must have the ability to read, write, comprehend and speak the English language to facilitate communication with patients, family members and other members of the health care team. The student must be able to document and maintain accurate records, presents information in a professional manner and provide patient instruction to effectively care for patients and their families.

Motor Ability

The student must be able to perform gross and fine motor movements with sufficient coordination needed to provide complete physical assessments and provide safe effective care for patients. The student is expected to have psychomotor skills necessary to perform or assist with procedures, treatments, administration of medication and emergency interventions including CPR if necessary. The student must have sufficient levels of neuromuscular control and eye-to-hand coordination as well as possess the physical and mental stamina to meet the demands associated with extended periods of sitting, standing, moving and physical exertion required for safe patient care. Students must be able to bend, squat, reach, kneel or balance. Clinical settings may require that students have the ability to carry and lift loads from the floor, from 12 inches from the floor, to shoulder height and overhead. The student must be able to occasionally lift 50 pounds, frequently lift 25 pounds and constantly lift 10 pounds. The student is expected to be able to maintain consciousness and equilibrium and have the physical strength and stamina to perform satisfactorily in clinical settings.

Intellectual - Conceptual Ability

The student must have the ability to develop problem-solving skills essential to professional nursing practice. Problem solving skills include the ability to measure, calculate reason, analyze, synthesize objective and subjective data, and to make decisions in a timely manner that reflects thoughtful deliberation and sound clinical judgment. The student must demonstrate application of these skills and possess the ability to incorporate new information from peers, instructors and the nursing/healthcare literature to formulate sound judgment to establish care plans and priorities in patient care activities.

Behavioral and Social Attributes

The student is expected to have the emotional stability required to exercise sound judgment, complete assessment and intervention activities. Compassion, integrity, motivation and concern for others are personal attributes required of those in the nursing program. The student must fully utilize intellectual capacities that facilitate prompt completion of all responsibilities in the classroom and clinical settings; the development of mature, sensitive and effective relationship with patients and other members of the healthcare team. The ability to establish rapport and maintain interpersonal relationships with individuals, families and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds is critical for practice as a nurse. Each student must be able to adapt to changing environments; display flexibility; accept and integrate constructive criticism given in the classroom and clinical settings; and effectively collaborate in the clinical setting with other members of the healthcare team.

Ability to Manage Stressful Situations

The student must be able to adapt to and function effectively in relation to stressful situations encountered in both the classroom and clinical settings, including emergency situations. Students will encounter multiple stressors while in the nursing program. These stressors may be (but are not limited to) personal, patient care/family, faculty/peer and/or program related.


A handicapped applicant/candidate shall not, on the basis of his or her handicap* (except those which would preclude the essential skills outlined above) be neither excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, nor be subjected to discrimination in the program. Carroll University may require that the applicant/student undergo a physical examination and/or an occupational skills evaluation.

* Handicapped as defines by the federal government pursuant to SS 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Caregiver Background Check

The applicant/candidate/student must complete a Background Information Disclosure Form prior to clinical placement in the program. The university intends to fully comply with the requirements of the Wisconsin Caregiver Background Check Law which requires hospitals and other health care and treatment entities to perform background checks on all persons who have direct, regular contact with clients. Certain convictions may prevent or significantly limit the ability of the university to place a student in a clinical program resulting in the student being unable to meet the university’s graduation requirements. The university reserves the right to reject the application of a candidate or remove a student from the program if the university determines that the results of the caregiver background check demonstrate that the applicant/student does not exhibit behavior and social attributes consistent with the program’s Technical Standards.

CPR and Health Requirements

All students must have on file current CPR certification.

Health Requirements

Overall: All nursing students must be able to perform the essential functions of a professional nurse. Reasonable accommodations will be afforded to disabled professional nurses as required under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. A student who can no longer perform the essential functions of a professional nurse must report that to the MSN Program Director. If reasonable accommodations cannot be made, the student will not be able to remain in the nursing program. Students shall notify the program of any change in their overall health status as it relates to their ability to perform the duties of a professional nurse.

TB Test: Annual TB testing is required for health care professionals. Proof of one of the following is required:

  • Two step TB skin test (1-3 weeks apart). Annual 1-step TB skin test after the initial two-step. or
  • QuantiFeron Gold blood test or
  • If you have a history of a positive TB skin test, provide a negative Chest XRay report. An annual Tuberculosis screening questionnaire is used when a student has a positive TB screening and a negative CXR on file.

Urine Drug Screens: Some clinical partners require a urine drug screen. The urine drug screen can be completed at the Carroll University Health Center if needed.

Annual Influenza Vaccine: Some clinical partners require annual influenza vaccines.

  • Cost of the physical exam, immunizations, and drug screen is the responsibility of the student.


Health: MSN students are required to have health insurance, and students can be covered under a family or personal policy. Students without their own coverage may purchase University-sponsored coverage.

Academic Progression

Progression Standards   for progression policy.

Nurse Educator Emphasis

Carroll University’s Master of Science in Nursing degree with a Nurse Educator focus (MSN-NE) is designed to provide the knowledge, skills and experiences needed to step into a rewarding career as a nurse educator in both the academic and/or the clinical practice setting. This advanced degree will provide the tools necessary to develop, implement and evaluate nursing curricula that prepares entry-level nurses for practice and to mentor practicing nurses to provide the highest level of care.

Carroll University MSN NE (Nurse Educator) Emphasis outcomes:

  1. Demonstrate critical thinking and decision making when planning, implementing, and evaluating strategies to guide an educational system or program toward successful outcomes.
  2. Analyze the impact of ethical and legal principles on the planning and delivery of educational programs in varied populations.
  3. Critique educational delivery and evaluation strategies for application across culturally and age-diverse populations in selected educational settings.
  4. Articulate a personal philosophy and framework acknowledging professional and accrediting agency competencies relating to the role and scope of practice of the nurse educator.
  5. Implement the role of the nurse educator in a selected educational setting.

MSN-NE Courses

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), Essentials of Master’s Education in Nursing (2011) provides a map to guide the development of Master’s education to meet nursing accreditation standards. The Essentials document identifies that all graduates with a MSN degree develop competency in nine essential core areas as well as engage in additional coursework in an area of practice or functional role. To meet the standards identified in the Essentials document the following core and support courses will be completed by MSN program candidates and the NE emphases courses. As AACN designates the NE, as direct care nursing roles (practice roles) emphases will complete physical assessment, pathophysiology, and pharmacology coursework. The practicum coursework and NE Synthesis provides MSN students the opportunity to build advanced specialty practice in nursing as NE.

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