Post-Master's Certificate in Nursing Education

teaching via zoom

We are the #4 Grad School of Nursing MSN. Vanderbilt University School of Nursing now offers a Nursing Education Post-Master’s Certificate (NE-PMC). The 12-credit part-time program is designed for nurses with a master’s or doctoral degree who are either current nurse educators or desire a nursing education role in academics or health care systems. The online certificate program provides learners with an understanding of foundational and advanced concepts to promote success in educator roles. Graduates of the NE-PMC will be formally prepared to engage in a new or enhanced role applying best evidence for teaching and learning, ready to begin a trajectory of scholarship in teaching and to lead innovation in transforming health professions education for the future.

Why nursing education?

Nurse educators combine clinical expertise, evidence and passion for teaching to impact the development of the nursing workforce in a variety of health care settings. In the face of a critical shortage of nursing faculty, nurses with master’s or doctoral degrees can expand their career options or extend their current skills with advanced preparation as a nurse educator. Roles for graduates of the NE-PMC include academic faculty, preceptor, staff developer and clinical educator. Current forces in health care and nursing education will necessitate advanced academic preparation to enhance the learning environment and effectively lead educational initiatives to transform the future of nursing.

Who teaches in the NE-PMC program?

Nationally recognized VUSN faculty with expertise in all aspects of the nurse educator role, including course design, assessment and evaluation, distance education, clinical teaching and simulation contribute to the NE-PMC program, model excellence and innovation in teaching, and provide mentorship.

What is the on-campus requirement?

All course requirements may be successfully completed in a distance format for busy professionals. Students may opt to come to campus for selected sessions, but there are no on-campus requirements.

Is there a practicum?

Students engage in authentic tasks and learning activities throughout the NE-PMC on topics such as curriculum development, course design, active learning strategies, use of educational technology, high stakes assessments, program evaluation, and supporting diverse students in complex and dynamic contexts for learning. The final course (N8079) focuses on role synthesis for an individualized and focused mentored teaching experience completed with VUSN faculty. Therefore, the NE-PMC does not include a practicum requirement. 

What is the cost of the program?

View financial aid and contact information at VUSN. School tuition and fees apply.

*Note: Nurse Faculty Loan Repayment funds are only available for VUSN DNP students. For more information about the NFLP, watch this previously recorded session.

How do I apply?

This program is designed for master’s prepared nurses who desire additional formal preparation for the educator role in academic or clinical settings. Interested applicants apply through the VUSN application for fall (four semester plan) or spring (three semester plan) admission. Applications are available at

VUSN students in good academic standing currently enrolled in the MSN, PMC or DNP programs may add the NE-PMC by submitting a change of status form. The NE-PMC is also available to VUSN PhD students. Applicants must have an earned master’s degree in nursing or have completed equivalent coursework if enrolled as a BSN-DNP student. Add the certificate program to your plan of study.

Graduated students who have completed nurse educator electives at VUSN may also return to the school within five years of graduation to complete additional courses required for the certificate. Use the application process at

Nursing Education Post Master’s Certificate (NE-PMC) Curriculum Plan

The NE PMC curriculum was developed using the NLN Nurse Educator Competencies and is comprised of:

  • 2 core courses (3 credit hours each)
  • 1 elective (choose 1 of 2 elective course options, 3 credit hours each)
  • 1 role synthesis course (3 credit hours)

The curriculum is implemented part time over three or four semesters. Learners may enter the program in the spring with completion in three semesters, or the fall with completion in four semesters.

In this certificate program you will gain competencies specific to the nurse educator role as outlined by the NLN, including:

  • Development of curricula to support institutional mission
  • Evidence-based, learner-centered instructional strategies and learning experiences for face-to-face, didactic, clinical and online learning settings
  • Use of reliable and valid assessment and evaluation strategies that align with learning objectives
  • Best practices for incorporating technology in the learning environment

At the conclusion of the certificate program, learners are eligible to sit for the National League for Nursing (NLN) Certified Nurse Educator examinations. Further information is available at

Nursing Education Post Master’s Certificate (PMC-NE)) Curriculum Plan  

Four Semester Curriculum Plan (Fall start)

Semester Courses Description Credit Hours
Fall N8066 Curriculum Strategies for Health Professions Education Core 3
Spring N8067 Educational Evaluation for Learning in the Health Professions Core 3
Summer N8068 Online Methodologies for Nursing Education OR N8078 Innovations for Teaching in Clinical and Simulated Settings Elective (choose 1)   Pre-requisites for enrollment include N8066 and N8067 3
Fall N8079 Mentored Teaching and Role Synthesis     Enrollment limited to NE PMC students only, required for PMC 3
Total credit hours 12

Three Semester Curriculum Plan (Spring start)

Semester Courses Description Credit hours
Spring N8066 & N8067 Core courses taken concurrently 6
Summer N8068 OR N8078 Elective (choose 1) 3
Fall N8079 Mentored teaching 3
Total credit hours 12

Have questions? 

Contact Professor Betsy Kennedy.
Professor, Associate Dean for Non-Tenure Track Faculty Affairs & Advancement
274 School of Nursing
Phone: 615-936-0447