At UCSF School of Nursing, the Post-Master’s certificate program is a special studies program for Master’s prepared nurses pursuing State certification in a specialty area or seeking a program of study that may lead to a change in role (e.g. a CNL or CNS seeking an NP specialty certificate). UCSF offers Post-Master's options for specialized study as a clinical nurse specialist, nurse practitioner or health policy specialist. The curriculum meets state and national credentialing requirements, and provides a certificate upon completion. Successful students are eligible to apply for national certification examinations.
Specialty areas are available on a year to year basis, depending on faculty and funding resources. For details on which specialty areas offer post-master's options, and supplemental specialty-specific details and requirements, see each specialty area on the following list:
- List of MS Specialty Areas: Specialties Page
Applicants must have a Master’s in the discipline of Nursing (MS), MSN, or MN. If accepted, applicants must become licensed by the California Board of Registered Nursing and the license must be recognized as valid for practice within the State of California during the complete course of study. Before beginning their studies, students must complete a background check and obtain any necessary immunizations.
The Post-Master's application procedure and instructions can be reviewed at the following web page. Post-MS applications (and application fees) are now processed through the national NursingCAS centralized system.
Do NOT use the on-line application for our regular Master of Science degree program.
Be sure, before you apply, to confirm that your intended MS Specialty Area (a) currently offers a Post-Master's option, and (b) will have space to accept your application. Following is the list of faculty leaders for each UCSF specialty area.
- MS Specialty Area Coordinators/Directors: coordms.pdf
Below is general information relevant to all specialties that offer the Post-Master’s option. For additional questions please contact the Specialty Director/Coordinator of the program to which you are applying.
Funding / Scholarships / Financial Aid
- Information: Funding Your Post-Masters
February 1st is the standard due date for filing applications. Only those applications submitted and complete with all supplemental information by the applicable deadline will be reviewed by faculty. Availability and capacity will differ between specialty areas and will fluctuate from one year to the next. Several specialty areas may review applications submitted beyond the due date, so check the applicable specialty area webpage for additional information. Do not assume that your preferred specialty will remain open if your application is still incomplete as of February 1st.
Available space in for Post-Masters students varies among specialty areas, some have more space than others. From among the various choices offered, those applicants seeking admission to the Family NP (FNP), Adult-Gerontology NP (AGNP), Adult-Gerontology Acute Care NP (AG ACNP), Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist (AG CNS), Nurse Midwifery / Women's Health Nurse Practitioner (CNM/WHNP), Acute Care Pediatric NP (ACPNP), or Pediatric NP (PNP) specialty areas should make a particular effort to meet the February 1st deadline.
Demand for these particular specialty areas often exceeds available capacity.
It is likely that many or all of those specialty areas listed above will fill their available slots immediately after the regular deadline. It is possible that some new applications will be accepted after February 1st -- only by those specialties which still have available space. Some specialty programs may include an interview as part of the application process, either in person or by phone.
Individuals admitted or accepted to one specialty area Post-MS program will not be allowed to “transfer or change” to another specialty area.
Post Masters Enrollment
Program Length and Time Commitment
The average time commitment is 4 - 8 quarters depending on the specialty area selected. Students are required to attend classes at UCSF an average of two days each week and attend clinical a minimum of 1 - 2 days each week. Students are not required to find their own clinical placements. Post-master's programs cannot be taken through on-line or distance learning options.
For post-masters students in 2013-14, the resident/in state tuition and the out of state tuition is $8,455.00 for each quarter (summer, fall, winter, or spring).
All fees are subject to change without notice.
The fee reduction policy for UCSF employees is not applicable to the Post-Master’s certificate program.
Financial aid opportunities are available to post-master’s students.
Background Check and Immunization requirements
Post-Master's students must verify immunizations, carry professional liability insurance, and complete a Criminal Background Check prior to their first clinical experience. Details will be provided after acceptance. For further information, application, and admission guidelines, access the link for your preferred specialty area.