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The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse : NR 500 Week 1

The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse : NR 500 Week 1


Consider the current healthcare delivery models and practice settings. Reflect on how nursing practice is transforming in response to the current demands of the healthcare system and answer one of the following questions:

  1. What differentiates the practice of a master’s-prepared nurse compared to that of a baccalaureate-prepared nurse?

  2. What is the value of a master’s degree in nursing?

  3. What do you consider to be the most essential professional competency for a master’s-prepared nurse practicing in the 21st century?

Refer to AACN Essentials, NLN competencies, and CCN Nursing Conceptual Framework. Use at least one outside scholarly article to support your position. Provide an example to illustrate an application to professional practice.

I completely agree with your conclusion statement regarding the value of master’s of science degrees in nursing (MSN) and that further research is needed. I have found in my own research for this assignment, that there is an underlying theme regarding lack of research on the value of MSN significance. It’s easy as nurses to see the value in a degree that not only furthers our expertise and knowledge, but our profession as a whole. It is the medical community, government, and public’s knowledge of MSN significance that needs to be raised. I believe that when a nurse is recognized as a valuable member of the healthcare community at the undergraduate and graduate level, then positive changes can and do occur. Advanced practice nurses ability to function to the full scope of their educated and science based practice is when the MSN’s value comes to light. Massimi et al. (2017), suggests that master’s prepared nurses show improved confidence and cognitive abilities in their practice.

Being able to attain advanced knowledge and critical thinking skills not only betters current practice but future practice as well. In my 20 years in the nursing profession, I know that my own confidence and ability to handle stressful situations at work has grown tremendously. The ability to problem solve, think outside of the box, and communicate clearly but effectively are valuable qualities that I believe an MSN can enhance for myself and nurses alike. MSN programs offer vital skill sets in education, administration, research, and advanced clinical practice at the nurse practitioner, midwife, and anesthetist level (Massimi et al. 2017).  I feel that this supports your discussion response that nurses with advanced degrees improve in clinical judgement with decision making and improvement of sometimes less than par current practices. Leadership skills introduced at the advanced academia level in nursing will continue to advance the profession as a whole.


Massimi, A., Marzuillo, C., Muzio, M., Vaccio, M., D’Andrea, E., Villari, P., De Vito, C. (2017). Quality and relevance of master degree education for the professional development of nurses and midwives. Nurse Education Today53(2017), 54-60. doi:10.1016/j.nedt.2017.04.012

NR 500 Week 8 Assignment

Week 8: What Did You Learn

Reflecting on this course, consider and answer the following questions: How do you envision using the AACN essentials and information learned in this course to identify, guide, and evaluate your practicum project? How do you envision using the concepts learned in this course in your future nursing practice?

  • NR 500 has been an excellent introductory course on the path towards a master’s of science in nursing degree.  By taking time to review scholarly literature and formulate my own opinions through deeper thinking and review of proven research, I have developed an excitement for the future of my nursing practice and the profession I share with each of you. While there is much work yet to be done, the foundation laid in this course will help bridge the new concepts that will be learned in future courses and ultimately my role in advanced practice nursing. Graduate nursing education plays a key role in health care reform and transformation. Use of evidence-based practice, informatics, patient driven, and patient centered care is the core of an MSN education (Finkelman, 2012.) It is the utilization of these acquired skills and knowledge after the MSN is attained that truly displays its value while bringing about positive change to healthcare. As I approach my practicum project, I will utilize the knowledge of translating scholarship into practice through evidence-based practice to recognize, perform, and measure an outcome that will improve nursing practice and correlate with my chosen specialty track of nurse education. One example might be to further resolve the practice problems associated with surgical site infections by advancing nurse education to prevent these infections through scholarly literature and proven preventative outcomes. Based on American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s (AACN) Essential IV of Master’s Education for Advanced Practice Nursing, graduate nurses must have the necessary skills to bring evidence-based practice forward to improve the care decisions, apply research to practice, resolve problems, and work as change agents for improvement in nursing practice (AACN, 2011).

As I look towards my future nursing practice as a nurse educator, I desire to bring the concepts learned in this course and translate

The Value of a Master's-Prepared Nurse NR 500 Week 1

The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse NR 500 Week 1

them into real practice. Promoting holistic caring provided through collaborative, interdisciplinary teamwork will be a focus of mine. Utilization of resources through modern informatics systems and continued review of scholarly literature will be resources I use to assist novice nurses in their paths towards knowledge. I would also like to role model civil behavior and educate others in the nursing profession on the dangers of incivility in the work and academic settings. There is much to discover on this path towards advanced practice, however the groundwork has been laid in this course. Utilization of the concepts and essentials learned will aid in my future nursing endeavors.

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American Associations of Colleges of Nursing. (2011). The essentials of master’s education in nursing. Retrieved from http://www.aacnnursing.org/Portals/42/Publications/MastersEssentials11.pdf

Finkelman, A. (2012). The movement to improve care, the institute of medicine quality reports and implications for the advanced practice registered nurse. Nursing Clinics47(2), 251-260. doi:10.1016/j.cnur.2012.02.006.


  1. How do you envision using the AACN essentials and information learned in this course to identify, guide, and evaluate your practicum project?

I envision using the information I learned in this course along with the AACN essentials key to identify, guide, and evaluate my practicum project essential for a successful outcome. From my perspective, the most essential professional competency for a master’s prepared nurse in the 21st century is to “Provide high quality, safe, patient-centered care grounded in holistic health principles. (CCN 2016). It is the RN who is training to set the standard. As licensed professionals we must be as proficient as we can be in nursing skills training to instill in others the correct policies or guidelines to follow consistently to provide the highest quality of care possible. This fluency or proficiency can only be achieved through further education. The MSN is the groundwork to enable us to perform in these leadership roles.

As we read through the ANA scope and standards it is made clear that graduate level nurses must have additional criteria to meet to be considered advanced. Each of these competencies and standards emphasize particularly areas of proficiency that are needed for leadership roles.

    • How do you envision using the concepts learned in this course in your future nursing practice?

In my future nursing practice, I feel responsible to highlight on the importance of nursing participation regarding making decisions and changing or enforcing policies. Staff participation empowers staff. When people are heard they feel empowered, and when people feel empowered people take ownership of their actions and expect more from themselves and peers working around them.

In my future nursing practice, I will also be supportive of furthering education and advocating for nursing school curriculums to address the importance of incivility and diverse ways or approaches on how to handle these situations. The expectation should start at nursing school.

I have learned that to provide a healthier working environment in my future nursing practice that as a leader I am also responsible to provide for leadership and all nursing staff further workshops on communication and techniques we can learn to better support each other and relay to each other ideas that although may be different at times we can come together to negotiate a happy medium. Administrators must be taking on active role. (Coursey 2013)

Thank you,

Monica Pascutto


Chamberlain College of Nursing. (2016). Chamberlain college of nursing masters of science in nursing conceptual framework. Retrieved from https://www.chamberlain.edu/docs/default-source/academics-admissions/catalog.pdfLinks to an external site.

Coursey, J. H., Rodriguez, R. E., Dieckmann, L. S., & Austin, P. N. (2013). Successful implementation of policies addressing lateral violence. AORN Journal, 97(1), 101-109. doi:10.1016/j.aorn.2012.09.010

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