Learn how to integrate nursing science, computer science, and information science to effectively manage and communicate data in your field with our online MSN Nursing Informatics specialization.
Recent 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.
In this track, you will complete your BSN degree first, including some master’s level core courses, general education, and elective courses. Once you meet these requirements, you will apply and be admitted into the MSN program and can begin the core courses for the MSN.”
If you already hold a BSN, see the BSN Track.
Students may be able to transfer up to 135 credits. At least 45 credits must be completed at Walden.
This sequence represents the minimum time to completion. Time to completion will 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 855-646-5286.
|Course Code||NURS 3100||Course||Issues and Trends in Nursing||Credits||(6 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 3020||Course||Health Assessment||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 3150||Course||Foundations of Nursing Research||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 4115||Course||Role of the Nurse—Public and Global Health||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 5052||Course||Essentials of Evidence-Based Practice||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 4005||Course||Topics in Clinical Nursing||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 4210||Course||Role of the Nurse Leader in Population Health||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 4220||Course||Leadership Competencies in Nursing and Healthcare||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 5050||Course||Policy and Advocacy for Improving Population Health||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 5051||Course||Transforming Nursing and Healthcare Through Technology||Credits||(5 cr.)|
In this course, students are provided with an overview of the evolution of nursing as a profession and introduced to their new role as scholar-practitioners. They examine changes in the U.S. healthcare delivery system, the importance of information technology, and measures that promote quality, safety, and better health outcomes in patient care. Students consider major issues and trends in contemporary nursing and healthcare practice, including the influence of socioeconomic, ethical, legal, and political variables and professional values. Through weekly discussions and assignments, students explore and share personal experiences in the context of contemporary nursing issues, such as the nursing shortage, workforce challenges, healthcare financing, professional organizations, and diversity. They are challenged to examine and propose solutions to these nursing issues in addition to those in their workplace. Students reflect on Walden's mission of social change and its impact on their future nursing practice as a scholar-practitioner. Because this is the first nursing course within the RN/BSN program, students learn to use Walden University's resources to enhance writing skills. Students are also introduced to the tools essential to success at Walden.
Through this course, students have the opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills required to collect data related to assessment of individual health status. They learn the physical examination skills of inspection, palpation, percussion, and auscultation used to assess major body systems across the lifespan. They gain practical experience using interviewing techniques and communication skills for taking patient histories, and they discuss the psychological, social, and cultural aspects of clinical assessment. Additionally, students consider the integration of data to guide the nursing process and ethical guidelines. Engaging in interactive simulations, students apply knowledge and demonstrate understanding of conducting health assessments. NURS 3100 or 3000.)
Nurses must understand research in order to effectively participate in the provision of evidence-based nursing care. Students in this course learn the foundational elements of the research process, refine information literacy skills, and develop an understanding of ethical research. Students investigate each step of the research process and complete a critical examination of quantitative and qualitative research relevant to their nursing practice. Students are given the tools to analyze nurse-sensitive indicators and clinical practice guidelines.
Students in this course will widen their perspectives related to promoting health and preventing disease as they examine health issues that transcend national borders, class, race, ethnicity, and culture. Students evaluate the role of the nurse in preserving and promoting health among diverse populations as well as the role in illness prevention and health promotion, protection, and maintenance of targeted populations. They also explore principles of epidemiology and the influencing sociopolitical factors that impact health and well-being of humankind. Students engage in assignments designed to provide practical application of content on topical issues, such as infant mortality rates in the United States and abroad, infectious or communicable disease, and implications of global climate change on health, among others. Finally, students consider and reflect on the nurse's role as a leader in promoting positive social change in transforming the health of populations in the world.
Nurses base practice on sound and tested evidence to ensure the safety, high quality, and cost-effectiveness of patient care. In this course, students have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the development and relationship of nursing theory, research, and practice. Through a variety of online activities and coursework, students explore the role of nursing theory in both research and practice. They examine research literature to differentiate and critique various research designs, including quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-method models; appraise statistical data; and analyze evidence. Acquired knowledge helps students critically evaluate research to make decisions about use of findings to enhance practice.
Nurses play a critical role in the care of patients with major acute and chronic health problems. They are accountable for clinical outcomes and for promoting quality and safety in patient care through the use of information technology. Students in this course will examine their role in the evaluation of nurse-sensitive indicators, standards, and core measures to develop an evidence-based practice approach to care. Students explore the relationship of genetics and genomics to health and illness as well as infection-control issues. The nurse's role in palliative and end-of-life care and complementary and alternative therapies is also explored. Students apply course concepts and demonstrate an understanding of nursing interventions and agency policy to improve nursing practice. NURS 4000.)
Students in this course focus on application of theories and concepts from nursing and public health sciences in assessing health status, preventing and controlling disease, and promoting a healthier population by working with families, aggregates, communities, and healthcare systems. Students apply system thinking by using epidemiological and community assessment techniques to examine at-risk populations, health promotion, and levels of prevention with special emphasis on ethnically diverse and vulnerable populations. Major local, state, and national health issues are considered, including communicable disease, chronic illness, environmental and occupational health, bioterrorism, emergency and disaster preparedness and response. Practice experiences provide learning experiences in population-based health promotion by collaborating with interdisciplinary public health partners in a local community.(1 credit of practicum equates to 72 clock hours of student practice experience hours.)
Contemporary nurses who wish to influence the current healthcare system must equip themselves with the knowledge and competencies to lead in times of pressure, constant change, and innovation. Quality Improvement science provides a rich set of tools and techniques and has been adopted by most nursing leaders. Nurses are expected to lead with quality improvement knowledge and competencies. Students in this course work toward gaining these skills by focusing on real practice problems and developing evidence-based solutions. They also learn skills and techniques in team building; strengthening interpersonal, communication, and interdisciplinary collaboration; promoting meaningful use of data to gauge improvements and problem solving; translating day to day practice problems to long term strategy for organizational growth; and identify strategies to manage organizational change. Students apply course concepts through case studies. Through this practice experience, students gain professional knowledge from nursing leaders in practice the application of quality improvement science. (1 credit of practicum equates to 72 clock hours of student practice experience hours.)
In today's rapidly changing healthcare delivery system, decisions made within the political arena impact the future of healthcare systems and the populations that healthcare professionals serve. In this course, students examine healthcare reform and its impact on healthcare delivery, population health, and nursing practice. They evaluate policies that influence the structure, financing, and quality in healthcare and examine healthcare delivery from a global perspective. Through discussions, case studies, and other activities, students examine the effects of legal and regulatory processes on nursing practice, healthcare delivery, and population health outcomes. Students also examine ways to advocate for promotion and preservation of population health and gain the necessary skills to influence policy and support changes effected by the passing of new healthcare reform legislation.
Evidence-based practice is an essential nurse competency that supports the provision of effective and efficient care. Through team projects and individual applications, students learn how to organize, evaluate, and use health information and knowledge to critically appraise and use information technology to enhance evidence-based practice. Students also apply evidence-based practice to improve advanced nursing practice and healthcare outcomes across organization, public-health, and consumer-health settings.
|Course Code||NURS 6053||Course||Interprofessional Organizational and Systems Leadership||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 6401||Course||Informatics in Nursing and Healthcare||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 6411||Course||Information and Knowledge Management||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 6421||Course||Supporting Workflow in Healthcare Systems||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 6441||Course||Project Management: Healthcare Information Technology||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 6431||Course||Evaluation Methods for Health Information Technology||Credits||(5 cr.)|
Students in this course prepare to exercise leadership through which they can help to ensure their organization is able to adapt and flourish in the ever-changing world of healthcare. Students explore the impact of healthcare system changes on transforming the nursing profession. They examine and discuss theories related to leadership and management and learn about empowerment strategies that assist master's-prepared nurses to assume and succeed in leadership roles. Students engage in course assignments that focus on real-world nursing practice applications of theory.
Nursing informatics is a rapidly evolving discipline that impacts all areas of nursing practice. Students in this course establish foundational knowledge for understanding and practicing nursing informatics in healthcare settings. Students explore models and theories that support nursing informatics and examine the use of information technology in support of decisions that promote safety and quality in patient-centered care. They also differentiate concerns about information protection and system integrity. Using concepts learned in the course, students engage in assignments through which they focus on nursing practice in healthcare applications, thus acquiring necessary skills to improve the management of healthcare through informatics nursing practice.
Effectively managing healthcare data is essential to the practice of nursing informatics. In this course, students examine database systems, including database design and manipulation. Students also explore concepts of information and knowledge management in the healthcare practice setting. Course assignments provide students with the opportunity to work efficiently in teams and build essential skills to execute database design. Through this course, students examine nursing's contributions to knowledge management in healthcare organizations.
Effective knowledge and information flow is critical in the coordination of patient care. Nurses are at the center of care coordination for patients, and informatics nurses are central to the design and development of information systems that support workflow in nursing practice. Students in this course examine the analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation of electronic information systems in healthcare systems. They compare, contrast, and critique methods of system design. Students also focus on workflow modeling, including assessment of current state workflow and the design of future state workflow, and they examine workflow design best practices to support the implementation and optimization of electronic health records.
Healthcare information technology and the implementation of electronic health records are foundational practices critical for success in project management. In this course, students learn the theory of health information technology project management and apply it to real-world experiences. Using project management software, students create a project management plan and schedule, and they control and close tasks related to a health informatics project. Through team projects and individual applications, students build skills and confidence that support the implementation of healthcare information technology to improve the quality of care and patient outcomes.
Healthcare policy, including the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (2009) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (1996), mandates that electronic documentation systems are secure and effective. In this course, students explore systems security and evaluation methods. Through discussion of real-world practice that includes public health and community-based settings, students evaluate the impact of redesigned workflows to the larger system design and throughout the organization. Students create a plan for system design and system evaluation. Through team projects and individual applications, they build skills and confidence that support collaborative, interdisciplinary system design to improve the effectiveness of care.
|Course Code||NURS 6600||Course||Capstone Synthesis Practicum||Credits||(5 cr.)|
Students in this course apply the MSN curriculum experience by translating knowledge into practice by designing, developing, and implementing a project in a professional healthcare setting. By using the culmination of learning, students gain the opportunity to effect positive social change within the healthcare delivery environment in the roles of change agent and nurse. Students' capstone experiences will help them develop their passion as practitioners while enhancing the nurse role as an advocate for social change within a scholarly presence.
*The baccalaureate degree program in nursing (BSN), master’s degree program in nursing (MSN), and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program at Walden University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (www.ccneaccreditation.org). Officially recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a national accreditation agency, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) is an autonomous accrediting agency, contributing to the improvement of the public's health. CCNE ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate, and residency programs in nursing.