Information technology continues to play a key role in enhancing patient care. Walden’s Nursing Informatics specialization places you at the forefront of technological innovation in healthcare.

The American Nurses Association defines nursing informatics as “a specialty that integrates nursing science, computer science, and information science to manage and communicate data, information, and knowledge in nursing practice.” Graduates of this specialization will be able to integrate data, information and knowledge to support patients, nurses and other caregivers in their decision making in all roles and settings.

Quality care depends on effective communication among healthcare providers, and nursing informatics is becoming increasingly important in how that care is provided. Since healthcare providers communicate primarily through documentation, nurse informaticists seek to improve the speed and accuracy of patient charting through the use of technology, allowing for better decision making regarding patient care. Fieldwork experience also provides an opportunity to apply learning in a real-world environment. Review the PDF to the right for the answers to the most frequently asked questions.

This specialization is designed to prepare graduates to qualify to sit for the Nurse Informatics board certification exam. Certification improves nurse informaticist marketability as most employers seek to hire board-certified informatics professionals.

Upon completing this specialization, graduates will be prepared to:

  • Leverage information technology on patient care and delivery systems to reduce workload and enhance care.
  • Use data and statistical analyses to evaluate practice and perform quality improvement.
  • Serve as an essential liaison among healthcare practitioners and administrators to leverage innovation and technology.
  • Qualify to sit for the Nursing Informatics Board Certification.

Find detailed information for this program, including possible occupations, completion rate, program costs, and median student loan debt.

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  • $2500 Grant for students who reside in the U.S.

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  • Curriculum

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Our curriculum addresses how technology systems and workflows can improve and expedite the communication process and the handling of patient data. In this specialization, you will learn about information systems, database concepts, project management, the protection of information, and knowledge management in a healthcare setting.

Program Tracks

Walden’s MSN program features three enrollment options depending on your previous education, experience, and education goals. The Nursing Informatics specialization is offered in all three tracks.

BSN to MSN Track

For registered nurses entering the program with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). 

RN to MSN Track For registered nurses entering the program with a hospital diploma, associate degree in nursing, or a bachelor’s degree other than a BSN.  
RN to BSN to MSN Track For registered nurses who want the opportunity to earn their BSN while working toward their MSN.

Nursing Informatics—BSN Track

Next State Date is September 2.  Apply NowRecent healthcare legislation has called for more widespread use of information technology to enhance the quality of patient care. Because nurses are at the center of care coordination for patients, knowledge and competence in nursing informatics is becoming increasingly important in the healthcare field. With this specialization, you can study how technology systems and workflows can improve and expedite communication and patient data. Coursework in the Nursing Informatics specialization focuses on such key areas as information systems, database concepts, effective project management, information protection, and knowledge management in a healthcare practice setting. Fieldwork experience provides you with the opportunity to use your new knowledge in a real-world environment.

The BSN Track is for registered nurses who already hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). Students who enter the program with a BSN will complete the following core curriculum and then advance to the courses in the Nursing Informatics specialization.

If you hold a hospital diploma, associate degree in nursing, or bachelor’s degree (other than BSN), see the RN Track.

Completion Requirements

  • 51 total quarter credits
    • Introductory course (1 cr.)
    • Core courses (20 cr.)
    • Specialization courses (25 cr.)
    • Capstone course (5 cr.)

Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress and credits transferred, if applicable. For a personalized estimate of your time to completion, call an enrollment advisor at 1-866-492-5336.

Introductory Course

Core Courses

Specialization Courses

Capstone Courses

Nursing Informatics—RN Track

Next State Date is July 14.  Apply NowRecent healthcare legislation has called for more widespread use of information technology to enhance the quality of patient care. Because nurses are at the center of care coordination for patients, knowledge and competence in nursing informatics is becoming increasingly important in the healthcare field. With this specialization, you can study how technology systems and workflows can improve and expedite communication and patient data. Coursework in the Nursing Informatics specialization focuses on such key areas as information systems, database concepts, effective project management, information protection, and knowledge management in a healthcare practice setting. Fieldwork experience provides you with the opportunity to use your new knowledge in a real-world environment.

The RN Track is for registered nurses who hold a hospital diploma, associate degree in nursing, or bachelor’s degree (other than BSN).

This track requires that you fulfill general education requirements. Once you meet these requirements, you will be admitted to Walden and begin taking the foundations and core courses for the MSN.

If you already hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), see the BSN Track.

Completion Requirements

  • 80 total quarter credits
    • Introductory course (1 cr.)
    • Foundation courses (29 cr.)
    • Core courses (20 cr.)
    • Specialization courses (25 cr.)
    • Capstone course (5 cr.)

Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress and credits transferred, if applicable. For a personalized estimate of your time to completion, call an enrollment advisor at 1-866-492-5336.

Introductory Course

Foundations Courses

Core Courses

Specialization Courses

Capstone Courses

Nursing Informatics—RN-BSN-MSN Track

Next State Date is July 14.  Apply NowRecent healthcare legislation has called for more widespread use of information technology to enhance the quality of patient care. Because nurses are at the center of care coordination for patients, knowledge and competence in nursing informatics is becoming increasingly important in the healthcare field. With this specialization, you can study how technology systems and workflows can improve and expedite communication and patient data. Coursework in the Nursing Informatics specialization focuses on such key areas as information systems, database concepts, effective project management, information protection, and knowledge management in a healthcare practice setting. Fieldwork experience provides you with the opportunity to use your new knowledge in a real-world environment.

The RN-BSN-MSN track is for registered nurses who hold a hospital diploma, associate degree in nursing, or bachelor’s degree (other than a Bachelor of Science in Nursing [BSN]). With this accelerated program of study, you can earn both your bachelor’s and your master’s degrees in less time and at a lower cost than earning each degree separately. You will enroll at the bachelor’s level and will take both bachelor’s- and master’s-level courses and then apply for admission to Walden’s MSN program following completion of undergraduate requirements.

This track requires that you fulfill general education requirements. Once you meet these requirements, you will be admitted to Walden and begin taking the foundations and core courses for the MSN.

If you already hold a BSN, see the BSN Track.

Completion Requirements

  • 180 total quarter credits to earn BSN 
    • Foundation course (1 cr.)
    • General education courses (50 cr.)
    • Lower-division courses (50 cr.)
    • Core courses (54 cr.)  
    • Elective courses (25 cr.)
  • 35 total quarter credits to earn MSN.

Students may be able to transfer up to 135 credits. At least 45 credits must be completed at Walden.

Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress and credits transferred, if applicable. For a personalized estimate of your time to completion, call an enrollment advisor at 1-866-492-5336.

Foundation Course

 

 

Core Courses

 

 

Elective Courses

Choose four courses from the general education program, the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Completion Program, or other Walden bachelor’s degree programs. Your elective credits should total 25 to meet your program requirements. You may also be eligible to transfer previous credit to meet your elective requirements. Note on minors: Electives can also be used to complete a six-course minor. Although this program requires fewer than six elective courses, you have the option to complete a minor and graduate with more than the required number of credits for this program.

Specialization Courses (to be taken after enrolling in MSN)

 

 

Capstone Courses

 

 

BSN Track (Leadership and Management, Nursing Education, and Nursing Informatics Specializations)

Curriculum Component Requirements  Cost  Total* 
Tuition 51 total quarter credit hours  $425 per quarter hour 

$21,675

Books and Materials Estimated costs  included

$0

Technology Fee  Per quarter

$120

$720

   

Total

$22,395

   

Transfer up to 25 credits 

$10,985

   

Total with Transfer Credits

$11,410

Maximum transfer credit total includes reduction in technology fee as related to reduced number of courses over time.

* Time to completion may vary by student, depending on individual progress and credits transferred, if applicable. For a personalized estimate of your time to completion, call an enrollment advisor at 1-866-492-5336.

*Tuition and fees are subject to change.

The RN Track for this program also requires up to 29 total quarter credit hours for Foundation Courses. These courses cost $345 per quarter credit hour, including textbooks and materials.

$2500 Grant for students who reside in the U.S.

Call 1-866-492-5336 for information about a full range of options for:

Transfer credits for your masters program

Nursing informatics is in high demand. Recent legislation is driving healthcare institutions to adopt electronic health records (EHR). These institutions will depend on nursing informatics professionals to help adopt and transition the new technologies into practice.

Nursing pay scaleAccording to the 2011 HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Nursing Informatics Workforce Survey, the average salary for a nursing informatics specialist was $98,703—a 16% increase in salary compared to the same survey in 2007.* Individuals certified in the specialty typically earn a higher salary compared to their noncertified colleagues.

Nurse Informatics professionals work in hospitals, healthcare organizations, universities, consulting firms, or corporations that develop and market healthcare information systems.

If you have the right experience and training, Walden’s MSN Nursing Informatics specialization can help position you for roles such as:

  • Informatics Nurse Specialist
  • Director of Clinical Information
  • Clinical Analyst
  • Clinical Informatics Coordinator
  • Informatics Consultant
  • Informatics Faculty
  • Informatics Researcher
  • Manager of Informatics

Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of this degree program.

*Health Information Management Systems Society, Nursing Informatics Workforce Survey, 2011, on the Internet at http://himss.files.cms-plus.com/HIMSSorg/content/files/2011HIMSSNursingInformaticsWorkforceSurvey.pdf (viewed online September 5, 2013).

MSN benefits study infographicWhen you choose Walden’s MSN program, you can benefit from the flexibility of an online learning format and from MobileLearn®. Offered exclusively at Walden, MobileLearn® not only enables you to choose where and when you learn, but it also gives you the ability to choose how you learn. Learn more.

A recent study, commissioned by Walden University, evaluated the effectiveness of the MSN program for Walden students employed at Intermountain Healthcare, a nationally recognized nonprofit healthcare system. Upon completing their Walden program, 85% of the surveyed Walden cohort claimed their studies helped them improve at work or as nurses in general.

In Walden’s MSN program, you can:

  • Collaborate with nurses from around the country in an interactive online environment.
  • Learn from expert teaching faculty—100% of whom hold doctoral degrees.
  • Gain the opportunity to translate knowledge into practice by designing, developing, and implementing a project in a professional healthcare setting.
  • Acquire the knowledge needed to act as a change agent and apply your enhanced expertise within the healthcare environment. Phi Nu Chapter logo.
  • Join Phi Nu, Walden’s chartered chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing and connect with nurses around the world to share the latest nursing research and best practices in clinical, scientific, and leadership areas.

Learn more about what distinguishes Walden’s Master of Science in Nursing program: 

CCNE Accreditation 
Expert Faculty 

General Education Requirements

Courses are available at Walden if you have not completed the minimum undergraduate credits of general education courses required for admission to the master’s program. If you choose to complete general education courses at Walden, you can transition directly into the RN Track of the MSN program after completion of the general education requirements.

Completing your general education courses at Walden allows you to benefit from Walden’s numerous student resources, as well as gain immediate experience in online learning, which can set a strong foundation for your master’s coursework at Walden.

Students may be eligible to enroll in the MSN program even if all general education coursework is not complete; however, students are required to complete all general education courses before registering for core courses in the MSN program.

Course Title  Courses 
Communication* 2
Humanities 2
Social Science Courses 2
Mathematics and Science 4
Introductory Statistics 1
Elective 1

*One course must be a college-level English composition course.

Courses must include anatomy, physiology, and microbiology.

Lifelong Learning for Nurses

Wherever you are in your nursing career, Walden offers a program to help you achieve your personal and professional goals. Learn from experts in the field and collaborate with nurses from across the United States as you pursue a degree that can help you make a greater difference.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Completion Program

  • Earn a BSN without compromising your personal or professional obligations.
  • Equip yourself with the tools you need for success in a nursing career through a flexible, relevant, evidence-based online nursing degree program.
  • Gain an advantage when applying to master’s degree programs with a BSN that is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

  • Choose from specializations that help you meet your specific career goals.
  • Contribute to positive social change in your community by becoming a leader in the profession.
  • Gain an advantage when applying to doctoral degree programs with an MSN that is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Post-Master’s Certificates in Nursing

  • Add depth to your degree or pursue a new specialization.
  • Gain the credentials you need to advance your career if you have been away from the educational environment for some time.
  • Prepare for professional development and leadership positions.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

  • Enhance your talents as a nurse leader in order to serve at the highest level within your existing specialty.
  • Assume greater practice and leadership roles in community-based healthcare organizations, evaluate and apply research that contributes to better patient outcomes, and promote a more effective and efficient healthcare system.
  • Help fill the need for advanced practice nurses holding doctoral degrees

Find out which program best meets your career goals. Request information, call 1-866-492-5336 in the United States, or see a list of international toll-free phone numbers.

Walden University’s MSN and BSN programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, D.C. 20036, 1-202-887-6791. CCNE is a national accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate and graduate education programs in preparing effective nurses. For students, accreditation signifies program innovation and continuous self-assessment.

Meet Students and Graduates

Meet a few of the students and graduates of the MSN program. Their unique perspective on Walden and on this program can offer you a glimpse of what to expect from your student experience. These students and alumni offer insights into learning at Walden, applying the MSN in the real world, and how earning an MSN has helped them make a difference in the field of nursing.

Cynthia Hickman“The most rewarding aspect of earning my master’s degree at Walden was my practicum project and experience. To be able to put into practice what Walden taught me was awesome. The knowledge, the faculty, and my colleagues made me a well-rounded scholar.”
Cynthia Hickman
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Graduate

“Walden University has taught me to act on my passions and address societal challenges using research and investigation. Transforming society is my goal and the goal of a Walden scholar.”
Cynthia Hickman
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Graduate

Denise Schuler“The auto-registration and the auto-book fulfillment are a few of the reasons I chose Walden. I did not have the time or energy to worry about registration and finding books while working and raising a family. It was so much easier to let Walden take care of everything. I especially loved receiving my box of books and other class materials—all shiny, new, complete, and on time. Best of all, there were no trips to the bookstore involving a backpack full of books and a four-block hike to my car!”
Denise Schuler
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Graduate

“Walden University’s accreditation and reputation earned me a measure of respect among my peers that I appreciated when the coursework demands on my time became challenging.”
Denise Schuler
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Graduate

“Nurses need to know the latest research studies related to patient care. At Walden, I learned to rely on evidence-based practice to make the necessary changes to provide high-quality patient care.”
Esteban Ramirez-Orta
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Student

Be More Effective With a Master of Science in Nursing

The Intermountain Healthcare Study

Can earning a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) from Walden University make you a more effective nurse? Walden partnered with Intermountain Healthcare, a nationally recognized nonprofit healthcare system, to evaluate the effectiveness of its MSN program. The study, conducted by Arroyo Research Services, followed both a Walden nurse cohort and a comparison group enrolled in different higher education institutions and monitored their progress through their respective programs.

According to the results, nurses in the Walden program reported a more positive result in increased knowledge and enhanced practice as well as in the development of leadership skills.

Key highlights include:

  • Of the nurses participating in the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) cohort, 85% claimed their Walden studies helped them to improve at work or as a nurse in general. By comparison, only 59% of non-Walden nurses responded similarly.
  • The majority of Walden cohort nurses (90%) claimed they were very likely to promote or initiate evidence-based practice, compared to 67% of non-Walden nurses. Specifically, 90% responded their studies helped them implement evidence-based practice, compared to 56% of the survey’s comparison group.
  • Nearly 90% of Walden cohort nurses claimed they applied what they learned in their studies, compared to 54% of non-Walden nurses.

Read the executive summary. (pdf)
Read the white paper. (pdf) 

Feedback from Intermountain Healthcare employees

“Where I see their increase in self-knowledge is in education principles that they didn’t have before. They’ve got a better background in it. They understand more of the principles of adult learning … I hear them say all the time, ‘Wow. I have learned so much in how to be a better facilitator and a better instructor, how to be a better teacher.’ ”

Intermountain Healthcare supervisor

“I feel like I have so many more tools now to be able to accomplish what I am doing in a different and more effective way.”

Intermountain Healthcare employee
Walden MSN Graduate

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Discover our CCNE-accredited MSN

Learn how Walden can help you take your career to a higher level. Watch now.

Graduates of this program will be prepared to:

  1. Synthesize organizational/systems leadership for cost-effective specialist nursing practice that contributes to high-quality healthcare delivery, advancement of the nursing profession, and social change.
  2. Critique evidence-based literature drawing from diverse theoretical perspectives and pertinent research to guide decision making that demonstrates best practices for specialist nursing practice in a global society.
  3. Integratively assess, diagnose, plan, implement, and evaluate cost-effective healthcare strategies that reduce health disparities by patient/population advocacy for access to specialist nursing care.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to effectively communicate using audience-specific oral, written, and information technology for professional delivery of specialist nursing care.
  5. Evaluate health needs of diverse populations for necessary teaching/coaching functions based on specialist nursing knowledge to restore/promote health and prevent illness/injury.
  6. Exhibit ongoing commitment to professional development and value of nursing theories/ethical principles (altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, social justice) in accordance with ethically responsible, legally accountable, specialist nursing practice.
  7. Implement specialist nursing roles to promote quality improvement of patient-centered care in accordance with professional practice standards that transform health outcomes for diverse populations.

For assistance in deciding which online degree program fits your goals, request information or speak with an enrollment advisor by calling 1-866-492-5336. A list of international toll-free phone numbers is available for students outside the United States.