Master of Science — Nurse Practitioner Track program curriculum
NRS 201—Health Status and Care Systems (4 units): Comparative health status data, major current health issues globally, nationally and regionally. Theoretical perspectives on social, political, economic determinants of health. Health-care systems examined, linked to data and evaluated in regard to outcomes. Aging, rural, ethnic minority populations highlighted.
NRS 204—Research Skills for Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership (4 units): Foundation for analyzing research, health and systems data to answer clinical, systems, or policy questions. Use and examine multiple sources of data and information as a basis for planned change and transformation in health care.
NRS 210 Y—Applied Health Informatics (4 units): Integration of nursing science, information science, computer science and cognitive science to acquire, process, generate and disseminate knowledge. Emphasis on informatics application that affect health care and nursing.
NRS 242 [A (2), B (2) and C (2)]—Implementation Science for Clinicians (6 total units): Builds upon content in Research Skills for Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership (NRS 204). Focus on identification of relevant research questions specific to patient care and evaluation of pertinent research literature. Particular emphasis on health promotion, disease prevention, population health, quality improvement and patient education.
NRS 243 [A (2), B (1) and C (1)]—Leadership in Professional Practice (4 total units): Examination of leadership through theoretical and philosophical perspectives. Focus on challenges in health care and leadership at various levels (e.g. unit, organizational and policy) and within organizational settings and environments. Explore concepts of leadership vision and modeling the way in leadership.
NRS 250—Foundations of Primary Health Care (7 units): Promote understanding and clinical application of human anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology. Exploration of concepts of cell biology, cell injury and molecular genetics mechanisms underlying biochemical, cellular and physiological changes occurring in the most common encountered human disease. General pathophysiological concepts include: cell injury, necrosis, inflammation, immunity, infection, tissue and healing processes, stress response and neoplasia. General concepts applied to an organ system approach to disease process in hematology, respiratory, cardiovascular, shock, gastrointestinal, endocrine, musculoskeletal, neurological and renal systems.
NRS 251 [A (8), B (8), C (8) and D (6)]—Primary Health Care (30 total units): Introduction of health-care concepts essential to common medical problems seen in primary-care settings. Module content focuses on various organ systems.
- 251A: renal, genitourinary; cardiology; ear, nose and throat; pulmonary
- 251B: gender-related health, endocrinology; gastroenterology; rheumatology; dermatology
- 251C: musculoskeletal; ophthalmology, neurology; psychiatry; hematology and oncology
- 251D: gerontology, obstetrics, pediatrics, infectious disease, emergency medicine
NRS 260—Foundations of Behavioral Health (1 unit): Focus on the spectrum of normal psychological development over one’s lifespan. Theories of stress and coping mechanism presented as a framework for the assessment of individuals. Family systems theory as it relates to primary care is used to assess the family in areas of coping strategies, resources, values and goals. Exploration of values, stereotypes and health-care beliefs to increase awareness of various California cultural groups.
NRS 270—Foundations of Pharmacology (2 units): Introduction of major concepts in pharmacology and relevant human physiology related to pharmacotherapeutics and toxicology. General principles of pharmacology include pharmacokinetics (absorption, distribution and elimination of drugs), pharmacodynamics (effects of the drug on the body), drug biotransformation and drug-drug interactions. Common terms, pharmacologic sources, the evaluation process for new drugs and the role of pharmaceutical companies in the practice of medicine are defined. The basic science review includes renal and hepatic physiology and the autonomic nervous system.
NRS 271 [A (2), B (2) and C (2)]—Pharmacology (6 total units): Focus on classes of drugs used to treat disorders in the corresponding primary health-care system. Content includes mechanisms of action, indications, contraindication, side effects and rationale for therapeutic choices in patient care. Major emphasis on antimicrobial drugs. Specialty areas:
- 271A: renal, genitourinary; cardiology; ear, nose and throat; pulmonary
- 271B: gender-related health, endocrinology; gastroenterology; rheumatology; dermatology
- 271C: musculoskeletal; ophthalmology, neurology; psychiatry; hematology and oncology
NRS 299—Research and Writing (4 units): Students in Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership graduate programs conduct research and writing toward their thesis under the supervision of a faculty member.
NRS 400—Basic Clinical Skills - Patient Interview - Physical Exam (2 units): Instruction and practice of the fundamental clinical skills necessary for patient care. Focus performance of a complete screening physical examination. Skills for effective communication in the clinician-patient relationship to establish trust, verbal and nonverbal communication and professional behavior. Cultural sensitivity across cultures emphasized, including appropriate use of translators training.
NRS 410 [A (2) and B (1) C (1), D (1), E (1), F (1) and G (1) ]—Advanced Clinical Skills (8 total units): Instruction and application of patient history intake and physical examination skills with specialized content related to organ systems corresponding with primary-health care. Instruction and practice on patient education and counseling. Case-based learning seminars focusing on clinical, problem-solving skills related to organ systems covered in the Primary Health Care (NRS 251) course. Integration of clinical skills, professionalism and practice. Advance case-based learning seminars focus on advanced and complex clinical problems. Overview of skills for effective communication in the clinical-patient relationship, especially in challenging patient interactions. Introduction of professional roles, interprofessional teams and scope of practice. Core concepts in medical ethics introduced.
NRS 440—Preparation for Clinical Practice (1 unit): Integration of clinical skills knowledge, professionalism and practice. Participation in advanced case-based learning seminars focusing on advanced and complex clinical problems. Methods discussed for successful clinician-patient communication skills dealing with challenging patient interactions. Historical evaluation of the physician assistant profession, its current scope of practice and future direction.
NRS 450 (A, B, C, D and E)—Supervised Clinical Practice - Primary Health Care (variable units): Primary-care rotations under the supervision of a community-based, primary-care physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Emphasis on continuity of care and unique aspects of providing health care in a community setting. The population focus is ambulatory care across the lifespan with the potential to assist in fulfilling inpatient responsibilities with the preceptor. At least one primary-care rotation must be completed in an underserved community.
Optional clinical experiences
Clinical experiences vary by quarter. Required clinical experiences include primary health care (must include exposure to geriatric and adult patients), pediatrics, women’s health, psychiatry, emergency medicine, surgery and inpatient medicine.
NRS 451—Supervised Clinical Practice - Pediatrics (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based, pediatric physician assistant or nurse practitioner. May take place in the primary care or specialty setting. Focus on ambulatory pediatrics with the possibility of inpatient experience. Assess and manage acute and chronic childhood illnesses under direct supervision of the preceptor. Evaluation of normal variations of growth and development, patient education and anticipatory guidance.
NRS 452—Supervised Clinical Practice - Women's Health (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based, women’s health and prenatal-care physician assistant or nurse practitioner. May take place in the primary care or specialty setting. Focus on outpatient setting with the possibility of inpatient experience. Assess and manage women seeking prenatal and gynecologic care. Evaluation based on knowledge, skills and abilities related to women’s health.
NRS 453—Supervised Clinical Practice - Mental Health (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a psychiatrist, psychiatric or mental-health nurse practitioner or other licensed mental-health professional. Focus on adult and elderly patients in the inpatient and outpatient setting. Assess and manage psychiatric and behavioral health disorders. Evaluation based on knowledge, skills and abilities related to psychiatry. This course may be required if students do not have adequate mental health exposure in a primary care setting.
NRS 454—Supervised Clinical Practice - Emergency Medicine (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based, emergency-medicine physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Must take place in a hospital-based emergency department. Focus on patients throughout the emergency department visit. Focus on evaluation and care of patients with urgent and emergent problems. Evaluation based on knowledge, skills and abilities related to emergency medicine.
NRS 455—Supervised Clinical Practice - Inpatient Surgery (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based surgical physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Focus on inpatient setting with the possibility of inpatient experience. Includes preoperative, operative and postoperative experience. Evaluation based on knowledge, skills and abilities related to general surgery.
NRS 456—Supervised Clinical Practice - Inpatient Medicine (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner working with people in the inpatient setting. Focus on adult and elderly patients in a hospital setting. Assess and care for patients with chronic, urgent developing problems. Evaluation based on knowledge, skills and abilities related to inpatient medicine.
NRS 459—Supervised Clinical Practice - Other Specialties (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Available to accommodate student interest and improve clinical skills.
NRS 471—Supervised Clinical Practice - Geriatric (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based geriatric medicine physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Patient population includes adults over 65. Focus on ambulatory geriatric patients with the possibility of inpatient experience. Exposure to various aspects of restorative and rehabilitative care and interdisciplinary approaches. Examination of the primary-care nurse practitioner role and responsibilities in the long-term care system. Assess and manage patients with a variety of acute and chronic illnesses. Evaluation based on knowledge of normal variations of aging, experience with palliative care and patient education.
NRS 475—Supervised Clinical Practice - Acute Care (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based or hospitalist physician or nurse practitioner. Work directly with specific inpatient units providing acute care in inpatient setting.
NRS 480—Supervised Clinical Practice - Rural Health (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner in a rural community. Evaluate and provide care for patients in a rural population. Learn about challenges and rewards of rural practice and barriers to health-care access in rural communities.
NRS 490—Supervised Clinical Practice - Quality and Safety (variable units): Clinical rotations under the supervision of a community-based physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. Learn about patient safety and work with quality improvement committees.