Wanted: Nurse Educators. Earn Your MSN Online Through GU

Future is Bright for Nurse Faculty

Gonzaga University in Spokane Washington is a regionally renowned Jesuit university. The institution has developed a formidable, though limited, online program. The nursing program delivers two Masters of Science in Nursing curriculums, one of which is the MSN Nurse Educator.

The industry need for nurse educators has reached a critical point. The nursing shortage is due in part to deterioration in the educator field. While the industry has worked overtime to attract new nursing recruits, the same has not been done for faculty. Despite the droves of students eager to get into nursing programs, there are so few nurse educators that many candidates are placed on waiting lists.

Now the nursing industry must play catch-up and one of the quickest ways to achieve volumes of new student educators is to offer online degree programs. Working adults respond differently to learning environments and curriculum than do their college age counterparts. They want the latest tips and tricks, the most relevant news and as little didacticism as possible. This style of learning is otherwise known as experiential.


Graduate nursing candidates interested in the MSN Nurse Educator must have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and a valid RN license. Any specific coursework requirements must be discussed with an admissions counselor.

Applicants must be highly motivated, goal driven and able to devote two to three years of consistent and regular online study to a completed degree.


The foundation curriculum for both MSN degrees consists of: ethics, evidence-based practice, and advanced nursing theory. These courses make up the foundation upon which the specialized curriculum rests. Educator-specific courses include: teaching paradigms, design, development, and evaluation of nursing curriculum, contemporary issues facing nurse faculty, and pathophysiology. There are hands-on practicum that may need to be completed on-campus or arranged as off-site study, depending on the expectations of course faculty.

The Nurse Educator track is 36-credit hours and prepares grad students for a range of teaching environments. Faculty instructors stress flexibility in student design and development of curriculum and teaching tools. Many types of nursing environments require instructors that are able to modify on the fly and remain responsive to student educational needs and temperament.

Career Outlook

The future is bright for nurse educators, whether they take up traditional teaching positions within academia, or work in less visible regions of the healthcare system. Hospital departments all require educators, as do community health agencies, and plenty of nursing sub-specialties employ their own in-house educators.

Gonzaga University's MSN degrees reach out to a wide scope of working nurses hungry for career change, and upward mobility. Educators may divide their time between a variety of educational pursuits and clinical practice for a best-of-both-worlds career.


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