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Advice on Pursuing Fast Track Nurse Practitioner Programs

Higher Education Articles November 27, 2013

If you are an RN or ADN looking for a way to advance in your career without spending years in the classroom, you might want to consider fast track nurse practitioner programs. According to the Mayo Clinic website it has been estimated by the American Nurses Association (ANA) that nurse practitioners could perform between 60 to 80 percent of all preventive and primary care. In this age of increased health care costs, trained certified NPs can reduce the workload on physicians and lower costs for patients while continuing to provide high levels of care.

As with many other sub-specialties in the nursing field, there are shortages of qualified NPs. For those who may be interested in this rewarding path, there are as number of options available, including fast track nurse practitioner programs, designed to shorten the time between application and certification.

Begin to plan for becoming a nurse practitioner early in your nursing career

Your first nursing assignment is not too soon to start thinking about and planning for your career path. It will help to get as much floor experience as possible, to help you decide whether you want to specialize in pediatrics, women’s health, public health, gerontology or another specialty. As you are gaining experience, let your supervisors know about your career intentions: they can often help guide and advise you regarding where to study or what programs or other requirements are necessary as well as updated regulations.

Helps and hints for choosing a nurse practitioner program

Among the requirements for becoming a nurse practitioner is an advanced degree, such as a master’s degree in a variety of approved NP tracks available at many colleges and schools of nursing. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)’s web pages on education programs for NPs offer a wealth of helpful and current information on where to find a fast track nurse practitioner program near you.

Some schools will offer accelerated nurse practitioner coursework designed to prepare a nursing applicant to take the registered nurse licensing examination (NCLEX) and, following this, obtain a BSN in Nursing at the end of two year’s study. After additional specialist modules are successfully completed, the candidate will be awarded the MS degree. Many schools offer day or evening classes to accommodate working nurses’ schedules.

If you want to save even more time, there are over 168 nationwide accelerated BSN to MSN programs available from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). Their database can help prospective students find approved fast track nurse practitioner programs nearby as well as time-saving online programs.

Certification: what you need to know

Once you have completed the necessary coursework and experience in your NP specialty, you are ready to apply for certification. As the most respected and largest credentialing body worldwide, the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) offers certification in a wide range of nurse practitioner specialties, including Acute Care, Gerontology, Family or Adult Psychiatric, Emergency, Pediatric or School. Becoming certified demonstrates your commitment and competency in nurse practitioner core requirements to potential employers, and may increase your chances of being hired and promoted as you become more experienced.

The Accreditation Board of Specialty Nursing Certification (ABSNC) recently awarded accreditation to the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANPCP). They offer certification for entry-level NPs through core competency examinations in Adult, Gerontology, Adult-Gerontology, and Family Nurse Practitioner.

By taking advantage of fast track nurse practitioner programs, you can meet the qualifications for entry and certification in your nurse practitioner field of specialty sooner and move forward with confidence in your chosen career path.

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2 Program(s) Found
  • There's still time to apply to Grand Canyon University and pursue your education. Learn more today!
  • Study on your schedule - GCU offers many programs 100% online to fit your busy lifestyle.
  • GCU offers a variety of opportunities to reduce the cost of furthering your education. Campus students may qualify for scholarships, while online students can take part in limited special offers.
  • A regionally accredited university, GCU also holds specialized accreditations and approvals for some of our core program offerings.
  • Degrees in business, education, nursing, humanities and social sciences, theology and more. Find the degree that fits you.
  • Talk to us today to learn more about financial aid and start dates!
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Flexible online course options - choose between 6-week and 12-week courses.
  • Benefit from our 24/7 tech support, Writing Center, Career Services Center, and more.
  • With 10 nursing courses required, you can complete this program in as little as 18 months.
  • Complete course projects in your own workplace and community.
  • Walden's RN-BSN Completion program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing (CCNE).
  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
1 Program(s) Found
  • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
  • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
  • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
  • Michigan's largest independent college.
  • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
  • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
Show more [+]
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  • Accelerated Programs
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  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
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