MSN Family Nurse Practitioner

MSN Family Nurse Practitioner


Welcome to The Calif. State University Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Program website. Our program prepares experienced Registered Nurses with a Bachelors Science Nursing (BSN) to work in outpatient, primary care settings caring for families and individuals across the lifespan from pregnancy through older adulthood.

The program is delivered an online/hybrid format including:

  • Didactic courses that are conducted online
  • Clinical courses include three components:
  • Online synchronous and asynchronous meetings
  • Clinical practice experience – provision of direct patient care under the supervision of a clinical preceptor in local, outpatient, settings in California (144 hours x 4 semesters totaling a minimum of 576 hours)
  • On-campus meetings (between 1-3 each semester)

Program units: The program requires 48 semester units completed over 3-4 years and includes 576 hours of clinical practice in primary care ambulatory settings. This program is designed for the working nurse, however, our students tell us they spend a minimum of 26-40 hours studying and practicing in the clinic setting each week. Full-time employment has proven to be challenging for FNP.

FNP Certification Boards: Graduates of our FNP program meet eligibility requirements to sit for National Certification board exams for FNPs administered by both the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)

Applications for the FNP program are accepted for Spring and Fall admission

  • Fall: October 1 through April 1
  • Spring: August 1 – Sept 15


  1. A minimum of two years of recent experience providing direct clinical care to patients as an RN (acute settings, preferred).
  2. Completion of a baccalaureate degree program with a CCNE- accredited upper division major in nursing (BSN) from a regionally accredited institution or the equivalent as determined by the School of Nursing.  See FAQ’s below if you hold a Bachelor’s degree in a field other than nursing. See below for information on foreign degrees.
  3. Overall grade point average of 3.0 (on a four-point scale) or higher in the last 60 semester (90 quarter) units of upper division course work attempted.
  4. California RN licensure is required and must be unencumbered, unrestricted, with no probation or disciplinary action pending or imposed at the time of application and throughout the program.
  5. Completion of the following prerequisites courses with a grade of "C" or better (or equivalent). There is no time limit for currency.
    • Statistics: An undergraduate statistics course, must contain probability and inferential.
    • Nursing Research: An upper division, undergraduate research course.
    • Health Assessment with lab: A stand-alone, upper division, undergraduate basic health assessment course. Not integrated into other courses & equivalent to CSUDH BSN 380 & 381 (minimum of 3 units with skills lab)
      • o IMPORTANT: Health Assessment with a lab must be a separate course and not integrated into other courses. If the course name differs from “Health Assessment” on transcripts, include a copy of the course description from the college/university catalog. Syllabi may be subsequently requested to verify course content.  If lab content is not included, it may be added to the first semester courses.

Degrees Outside of the United States

If the Baccalaureate degree was completed outside of the United States:

  • Official academic records and diploma/certificate must be sent from the institution attended.
  • If official records are not in English, certified English translations of all documents must also be submitted. Translations must be word-for-word (i.e. literal) translations
  • English Proficiency must be established by exam
  • TOEFL minimum scores: 550 paper, 80 internet, 213 computer
  • IELTS minimum score 6.5
  • Pearson Test of English Academic minimum score 53

A waiver may be requested if 3 years full-time equivalent instruction at the secondary level or higher was received at a school where English was the principal language of instruction.

    Application Information & Time Frame


    Applicants complete a graduate student online application on the Cal State Apply site. The application requires the upload of specific documents, recommendations, and the receipt of all electronic recommendations by the application deadline. We recommend beginning the application early to ensure all materials are received by the due date. Late applications are not accepted.


    Attendance at an Online Information Session is highly recommended. Visit our webpage: and navigate to “Information Sessions and Workshops” look for MSN Info Session and the sign-up link.

    • Visit the and begin the application process
    • Complete all four quadrants of the application, including:
      • Personal information
      • Academic history
      • Supporting Information
      • Program Materials – all materials must be submitted for application to be complete, including recommendations, additional questions specific to the FNP program, unofficial and official transcripts, etc.
    • Submit complete application and all required program materials by the deadline.
    • After the application is submitted, within 10 days, you will receive a letter via US Mail with your student ID number and instructions for activating your MyCSUDH portal. Check your Student Portal to verify that all documents & transcripts have been received. Contact CSUDH University Admissions office to resolve any issues noted in your portal, including name conflicts on transcripts.
    • Applicants are only considered for admission after all required documents have been received, including recommendations and official transcripts.
    • Incomplete or late submissions, documents that that do not meet the criteria stated above, or those that are not readable, will not be considered for admission.
    • Admission is granted on a competitive basis. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission into the program.


    • Admission decisions and notification of acceptance for the fall will occur in late May or early June. Spring decisions and notifications will occur in late November or early December. Occasionally unexpected circumstances may cause a delay.
    • If accepted, applicants are required to accept or decline the offer of admission by the deadline stated on the offer letter.
    • Applicants admitted in our program, will need to be computer literate and competent in word processing, on-line searches & email.
    • If admitted into the FNP program, there will be a mandatory on-campus orientation meeting the week before instruction begins. Applicants who are accepted will be notified of this date. Reserve the week prior to the first week of instruction for MSN/FNP orientation; make no vacation plans, schedule the day off from work as soon as you are notified of the date. See the Academic calendar: Search: academic calendar.


    Application Opens

    Application Deadline

    Document Deadline


     October 1

    April 1

    April 1


    August 1

    Sept. 15

    Sept. 15


    Actual costs depend on the Plan of Study selected. Graduate fees during spring and fall semesters vary based on part-time (0-6 units) or full-time (6 or more units) attendance. Summer tuition is calculated on a per-unit basis. See "FNP Plans of Study" link under the Plans of Study section and the university financial aid page:  


    The FNP program requires 48 graduate units and includes 576 clinical hours completed in outpatient ambulatory care settings. Graduates earn the Masters of Science of Nursing (MSN) degree.  The program is rigorous and progresses in accordance to one of the Plan of Study linked below.

    Applicants should carefully consider how work and life schedules will be adjusted to accommodate the on-line course work, on-campus instruction, and clinical practice days. It is important to note that ambulatory clinical settings are typically open Monday through Friday, during daytime business hours.

    Spring and fall Plan of Studies with summers:

    2024 FNP Plans of Study

    2025 FNP Plans of Study


    Supervised direct patient care in the clinical setting provides for the acquisition and application of advanced practice nursing knowledge, skills, and competencies. FNP students work with an approved preceptor who may be a Nurse Practitioner, a Certified Nurse Midwife with a graduate degree, or a physician. Clinical hours are completed in approved primary care and outpatient settings.  The program will locate a preceptor within 100 miles of the student’s home but students may request approval of additional preceptors and clinical sites closer to their home.

    Additional clinical requirements include:

    • Clear, unencumbered California RN license throughout the MSN program
    • Health requirements (e.g. immunizations, titers, screenings)
    • Clinical site & Preceptor approval
    • Note: Some clinical sites also require background check & drug screen 

    FNP CURRICULUM - consists of the graduate core; advanced practice registered nursing core, and nurse practitioner role and population-focused courses

    FNP CURRICULUM - consists of the graduate core; advanced practice registered nursing core, and nurse practitioner role and population-focused courses

    Graduate Core Courses (15 units):

    • MSN 502 Advanced Nursing Roles
    • MSN 513 Healthcare Policy and Economics
    • MSN 514 Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
    • MSN 530 Research Utilization in Advanced Nursing Practice
    • MSN 531 Nursing Ethics

    Advanced Practice Registered Nursing Core Courses (9 units):

    • MSN 521/522 Advanced Health Assessment and Lab
    • MSN 526 Pharmacology
    • MSN 528 Advanced Pathophysiology

    Note: MSN 522 requires two, 2-day sessions for teaching and testing of assessment skills in the on-campus Skills Lab.

    FNP Role and Population-focused Courses (24 units):

    • MSN 556 Primary Care of the Family I
    • MSN 558 Family Nurse Practitioner: Role Performance I
    • MSN 561 Primary Care of the Family II: Pediatric Health
    • MSN 562 Primary Care of the Family II: Women’s/Gender Health
    • MSN 568 Family Nurse Practitioner: Role Performance II
    • MSN 576 Primary Care of the Family III
    • MSN 578 Family Nurse Practitioner: Role Performance III
    • MSN 588 Family Nurse Practitioner: Role Performance IV


    Accreditation Information:

    Graduates from our program qualify to apply for California and National Nurse Practitioner certification:

    California BRN for nurse practitioner certification (NP) and furnishing number (NPF)
    National certification examination as a Family Nurse Practitioner through
    o American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the
    o American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)

    Our FNP program is an approved academic program by the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN). We are physically located in California and offer a graduate degree in nursing to qualified students.


    What are the responsibilities of an FNP in Primary Care Settings?

    • The FNP in outpatient, primary care settings gather patient histories, conduct physical examinations, make diagnoses, order diagnostic tests, and select appropriate non-pharmacologic and pharmacologic treatments according to the diagnosis. If necessary, consultations and referrals are made to other health care professionals as needed.

    Can I do my clinical hours in the hospital?

    • This is not possible because our FNP program prepares Nurse Practitioners to work in outpatient, ambulatory care settings. All clinical hours are completed in outpatient settings. Students who wish to work as an acute care nurse practitioner can find additional programs by visiting the CCNE website and searching for Accredited Programs.

    What if I have already earned an MSN Degree?

    • Applicants who have already earned an MS degree in nursing should plan to enroll in a post-masters certificate FNP program. Unfortunately, our program does not offer this certificate at this time.  Visit the CCNE website and search for Accredited Programs.

    Are classes held online?

    • The core and didactic courses are 100% online and are conducted over the Internet, using a Learning Management System (Canvas). Clinical courses require online assignments, on-campus meetings, and the completion of clinical hours with a preceptor.

    How often do clinical classes meet on campus?

    • The clinical courses include Health Assessment Lab (MSN 522) and FNP Role Performance courses (MSN 558, 568, 578, & 588). These labs meet on campus between 1-3 times per semester.

    Can Registered Nurses with a Non-Nursing Bachelor’s degree apply?

    • Nurses with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field who would like to prepare for admission into an MSN program will have the opportunity to receive their BSN by completing the RN-BSN program.
    • Please see the RN-BSN Admissions page for further information:

    Definitions of Terms - Calif. Board of Registered Nursing (BRN):

    “Nurse practitioner” means an advanced practice registered nurse who meets board education and certification requirements and possesses additional advanced practice educational preparation and skills in physical diagnosis, psycho-social assessment, and management of health-illness needs in primary care, and/or acute care.

    “Primary care” means comprehensive and continuous care provided to patients, families, and the community. Primary care focuses on basic preventative care, health promotion, disease prevention, health maintenance, patient education and the diagnoses and treatment of acute and chronic illnesses

    “Clinically competent” means the individual possesses and exercises the degree of learning, skill, care and experience ordinarily possessed and exercised by a certified nurse practitioner providing healthcare in the same nurse practitioner category. The clinical experience must be such that the nurse received intensive experience in performing the diagnostic and treatment procedures essential to the provision of primary care.

    “Clinical practice experience” means supervised direct patient care in the clinical setting that provides for the acquisition and application of advanced practice nursing knowledge, skills, and competencies.

    “Direct supervision of students” means a clinical preceptor or a faculty member is physically present at the practice site. The clinical preceptor or faculty member retains the responsibility for patient care while overseeing the student.


    For questions: Please email the FNP Program interim Director, Dr. Linda Goldman at

    For more information, please email