MSN: Public Health Nursing Concentration

Major: Public Health Nursing
Degree Awarded: Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Minimum Required Credits: 46.0
Co-op Option: None
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 51.3801
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 21-1094

About the Program

The Public Health Nursing concentration within the Master of Nursing degree programs prepares nurses to work independently and collaboratively to assess, investigate, analyze the determinants of health and prioritize health needs (medical and non-medical) in order to inform key stakeholders and policymakers and to guide professional practice. Graduates will be prepared to work effectively in interprofessional teams to develop, implement, manage and evaluate programs that address priority health needs. 

As health care continues to evolve, there is an increased need for nurses trained in public health. Drexel University’s online MSN in Public Health Nursing aims to meet that need, training you to use a systems-thinking clinical approach to advocate for resources and policies to improve the health of all populations, locally and globally. This is an interdisciplinary degree that provides the opportunity to take online courses through Drexel’s College of Nursing and Health Professions as well as Drexel's Dornsife School of Public Health. This blend of nursing education and public health foundational knowledge culminates in a capstone project where you’ll take what you’ve learned throughout the MSN Public Health Nursing program and apply it to a real-world public health issue.

The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Additional Information

For more information about this program, contact:

Graduate Nursing Division

Additional information is available on the Drexel's College of Nursing and Health Professions Public Health Nursing webpage and the Drexel University Online Public Health Nursing webpage.

Admission Requirements

  • A Bachelor of Science in Nursing from a program fully accredited by the National League of Nursing (NLN/ACEN) or the American Association Colleges of Nursing (AACN/CCNE)
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0.
    • Applications from RNs with a GPA less than 3.0 may be considered on an individual basis.
  • Official transcripts from all previous educational institutions are required.
  • Two professional references are required from colleagues or supervisors who can attest to the applicant’s knowledge, skill and potential aptitude for graduate study.
    • Letters of recommendation are waived for students with a 3.0 GPA or higher.
  • Personal statement (no more than two pages and no less than one page double-spaced) that will give the admissions committee a better understanding of the following:
    • Why you are choosing this particular program of study
    • Your plans upon completion of the certificate
    • How your current work experience will enhance your experience in this program
  • Curriculum vitae or resume.
  • Copy of current United States RN license is required.
  • Copies of any advanced practice nursing licensure and certification documents.
  • While specific experience is not required for applicants to the track, previous related work experience may make an applicant more competitive.

International applicants must possess a BSN (or its equivalent) and a current United States RN license.

TOEFL Requirement

International applicants, as well as immigrants to the United States and United States permanent residents, whose native language is not English and who have not received a bachelor’s degree or higher in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand or the United Kingdom, must show proficiency in English speaking as well as listening, writing, and reading. U.S. citizens born on U.S. military bases abroad may be waived from the TOEFL requirement after providing documentation of this status; otherwise, applicants must meet one of the following requirements:

If you take the TOEFLiBT exam, you are required to have a minimum combined score for the listening, writing and reading sections of 79 plus a speaking section score of 26 or higher.

If you take the TOEFL, you are required to have a minimum score of 550 or higher and a Test of Spoken English score (TSE) of 55 or higher.

Degree Requirements

MSN Core Courses
NURS 500 [WI] Confronting Issues in Contemporary Health Care Environments3.0
NURS 502Advanced Ethical Decision Making in Health Care3.0
NURS 544Quality and Safety in Healthcare3.0
RSCH 503Research Methods and Biostatistics3.0
RSCH 504Evaluation and Translation of Health Research3.0
Public Health Courses
CHP 561Overview of Issues in Global Health3.0
HMP 505Qualitative Data and Mixed Methods Analysis3.0
PBHL 510Public Health Foundations and Systems I4.0
PBHL 511Public Health Foundations and Systems II4.0
Nursing Courses
IPS 511Collaboration with Vulnerable Populations3.0
NURS 531Epidemiology in Action: Tracking Health & Disease3.0
or EPI 570 Introduction to Epidemiology
NURS 532Evaluation of Health Outcomes3.0
NURS 665Advanced Nursing Practice in Population Health5.0
Graduate Elective (Nursing* or Public Health**)3.0
Total Credits46.0

Nursing Electives can be any course with the prefix Nursing (NURS, NUPR), Interprofessional Studies (IPS), or Complementary and Integrative Health (CIH/CIT), with course number ranging from 500-699.


Public Health Electives can be any course with the prefix Community Health and Prevention (CHP), Biostatistics (BST), Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH), Epidemiology (EPI), Health Management and Policy (HMP), with a course number ranging from 500-699.

Writing-Intensive Course Requirement

A [WI], Writing Intensive, next to a graduate course in this catalog indicates that the graduate course is a writing intensive course. The graduate course is a required course in your curriculum.

Sample Plan of Study

First Year (Part-Time)
NURS 5003.0NURS 5023.0NURS 531 or EPI 5703.0HMP 5053.0
PBHL 5104.0PBHL 5114.0RSCH 5033.0RSCH 5043.0
 7 7 6 6
Second Year (Part-Time)
CHP 5613.0IPS 5113.0NURS 6655.0 
NURS 5443.0NURS 5323.0Elective3.0 
 6 6 8 
Total Credits 46
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