Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate

Available Online

The Post-Graduate FNP Certificate will prepare advanced practice nurses to manage the care of individuals and families across the lifespan. This program is designed for nurses who hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), who wish to advance their knowledge, education, and skills to practice in an advanced practice role as a FNP. Graduates are eligible to sit for the FNP national certification examinations offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP). The program emphasis is to foster the FNP’s abilities to critically think; make differential diagnoses; use evidence-based findings to improve healthcare outcomes; and be accountable for the provision of healthcare to diverse individuals and families in the areas of health promotion, disease prevention, management of acute and chronic health conditions and primary care. The FNP provides clinical management of primary care conditions in a variety of clinics and community-based settings.

*This certificate program is a non-degree, graduate-level program. Upon completion of the program, participant receives a Post-Graduate Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate.

Admission Requirements

  • To be eligible for admission to the Post-Graduate FNP Certificate program at National University, candidates must:
  • Meet the University requirements for graduate study, listed in the General Catalog under admission requirements
  • Hold a Master’s or doctoral degree in nursing from a regionally and CCNE and/or NLNAC accredited program in nursing
  • Provide proof of current, active, and unencumbered RN license in the State of residence
  • Have a GPA of at least 3.0 in graduate course work, on a 4.0 scale
  • Have 2-year recent clinical practice as a professional nurse
  • Have completed the University Application for Graduate Admissions
  • Have completed the Post-Graduate Certificate application packet
  • Provide one official transcript from each college or university attended to the Department of Nursing
  • Have three professional recommendation forms, preferably from individuals who hold graduate or doctoral degrees
  • Provide evidence of specified immunizations, a report of a recent physical clearance, a clear drug screen and background check, and current BLS-AED certification

Additional pre-requisite requirements

Students should be proficient in operating a personal computer, including: demonstrated competency in standard computer operating systems and electronic filing systems, basic keyboarding skills, organizing and sorting electronic documents; demonstrated knowledge of standard computer applications to include Microsoft Word and Excel; familiarity with using internet browsers and standard email systems such as MS Outlook.

Additional Information

This is a hybrid program that includes both online, onsite, and clinical preceptored learning activities. It is offered at an accelerated pace of full-time study using an executive weekend format once a month (e.g., Thursday-Saturday, all day sessions) and once every 3 month on-site Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). All clinical courses are offered as immersion practicum experiences, conducted in faculty approved, in-person, preceptored clinical settings. All students must complete all courses with a B or better to progress in the program. The entire program will take a minimum of 12 months to complete.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Synthesize theoretical and empirical knowledge derived from the physical and behavioral sciences and humanities as a basis for professional advanced clinical nursing practice.
  • Devise evidence-based health promotion and disease prevention strategies at the patient, family, organizational, community, and population levels for the purpose of improving healthcare outcomes.
  • Utilize current technologies to deliver, enhance, and document care across multiple settings to achieve optimal outcomes.
  • Advocate for culturally sensitive health care systems and policies that meet ethical and legal standards as a means to improve outcomes and reduce disparity.
  • Model collaboration with interdisciplinary and intradisciplinary teams in healthcare systems delivering care to complex, multi-need patients, families, and communities.
  • Analyze the impact of national and global health policy on the cost, quality, and access to care in diverse patient populations.


The Post-Graduate FNP Certificate Program of Study includes 46.5 quarter units, at least 600 clinical preceptored hours with expected completion in 4 quarters, each 12 weeks in length, over a 12-month time period. A total of 13.5 units of graduate credit may be granted for graduate work completed at another institution as it applies to this program and provided the units were not used to earn another advanced degree. Refer to the General Catalog section on graduate admission requirements for specific information regarding admission and evaluation.
Requirements for the Certification (10 courses; 46.5 quarter units)
Core Requisite(s):
Experienced, practicing Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) can waive NSG 641 and NSG 681 if taken less than five (5) years prior to application to the Certificate Program. In addition, experienced, practicing APRN can waive NSG 682 if taken less than 10 years prior to application to the Certificate Program.