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This program educates BSN-prepared nurse leaders to move health care forward. If you’re ready to learn how to lead decision-making in health care using data to drive actions, then you are ready to earn your Master of Science in Nursing at the University of Michigan.

Advance your career with the Michigan Difference.

Program Highlights

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34 Credits (28 Credits in Core/Foundational Courses, 6 Credits of Electives in Area of Student Interest)
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2-Year and 3-Year Program Length Options Available
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2 Cohorts Per Year (Fall & Winter)
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On-campus Orientation
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4-day On-campus Intensive
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Consolidated Immersion
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#8 Nursing Master’s Program - 2023 U.S. News Best Graduate Schools
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Certificate in Health Informatics Available
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Who Is This Program For?

This program was designed for action-oriented, data-driven nurse leaders who want to tackle detailed, analytical decision-making and advance into leadership roles. If you want to work on creating a long-term, sustainable impact in health care at the team, system and national policy levels – this program is for you. Our online MSN program opens up new opportunities for nurses whose schedules and personal demands prevent them from attending a traditional brick-and-mortar program.

Key Dates and Deadlines

Fall 2022

June 1, 2022
Final application deadline
August 29, 2022
Classes Start

Course Descriptions

Applied Biostatistics for Clinical Practice

This biostatistics course covers fundamental statistical concepts and methods for health professionals who need to analyze clinical data and interpret research. Major topics include descriptive statistics, probability theory, statistical inference, hypothesis testing, correlation, regression, survival analysis and diagnostic test performance.

Foundations of Leadership

This graduate-level course examines the foundations and context of nursing leadership to impact and drive both nursing and health care organizations in creating transformative structures for high-quality and value-based patient care across the continuum.

Foundations in Innovation and Implementation in Health and Health Care

This course will prepare students to lead the process of innovation in and transformation of nursing and health care. Health care innovation is described as any new idea, nursing practice, model of care, clinical measure or health care technology that is perceived as new by an individual, and other units of adoption that improve the efficiency, effectiveness, quality, safety, sustainability and affordability of health care.

Foundations of Quality Science and Performance Analytics

This course reviews principles of quality science and approaches to analyzing current and historical data to predict future events and trends in health care systems. The course focuses on applications of effective decision-making and deployment of scarce resources. The role of government regulation and accrediting bodies on quality and performance improvement will also be discussed.

Strategic Resources and Health Care Operations Leadership

This is a course designed to provide health care leaders with the competency needed to lead teams in the operations of the organization using practices that are strategically aligned in financial and economic, human resources, strategic planning, marketing and applied technology principles. Using data as a strategic asset in key communication and operational decisions is simulated within the course. Data-driven models and tools are discussed, evaluated and applied to address resource allocation and distribution for optimal operational efficiency and value-based care delivery. Students will become proficient in strategic business/project planning and organizational goal alignment.

Foundations of Health Informatics

This course will deepen the understanding of how informatics fundamentally impacts care process, outcomes, value, costs and efficiency. In addition to the introduction of fundamental informatics theories, principles and practices, this course highlights the identification, definition, coordination, acquisition, storage analysis and communication of data as a part of critical success factors for the organization and for nursing practice.

Decision Science for Complex Health Systems

This course emphasizes the theoretical underpinnings of decision science and the applications of a variety of analytic tools, models and methods that drive decision analysis under conditions of uncertainty, risk and sensitivity. Decision science tools are applied to understand impact on outcomes such as public health, policy, resource allocation, quality and safety.

Sociotechnical Approaches in Practice

This course explores components of sociotechnical frameworks that underlie the development, deployment and maintenance of organizational change. Strategic planning and strategies used to analyze and model health system requirements are emphasized. New and emerging innovations are assessed for their impact and potential strategic value to an organization.

Evaluation in Health Care Systems

The exponential growth of health care innovation requires ongoing monitoring and evaluation of new or significantly improved products, services, processes and systems. This course provides an overall review, monitoring and evaluation of programs, processes and innovation in health care, including methods and challenges unique to the evaluation of health information systems and technologies. A variety of monitoring and evaluation frameworks, standards and tools will be examined. Examples from health systems and national and international health programs will be used for discussion, analysis and evaluation.


Students are required to complete 6 credits of elective courses based on your area of interest. Dive deeper into a leadership, analytics or innovation focused course offered through the University of Michigan School of Nursing or explore courses offered through other University of Michigan schools and colleges such as business leadership, global health or policy analysis.

Career Paths for Grads

This MSN program prepares students for:

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Leadership Roles

  • Coordinator
  • Educator
  • Manager
  • Supervisor
  • Specialist
  • Director
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Informatics Roles

  • Informatics Leader
  • Specialist
  • Project Director
  • Consultant
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Roles Across the Care Continuum

  • Traditional acute care roles
  • Nontraditional industry roles
  • Care management, case management
  • Quality & safety, risk management
  • Populations and practice focus
  • Health policy & advocacy

Concentrations and Certificates

Global Health Concentration

The Global Health Concentration (GHC) is designed to provide students with coursework and experience to enhance their global clinical and scholarly work. The concentration emphasizes an understanding of evidence-based practice, policy, and leadership related to global health. Students in any master’s or DNP program are eligible to add the GHC to their degree.

Occupational Health Nursing Concentration

Occupational health nurses help to maximize workers’ health and productivity and decrease illnesses and injuries while controlling costs. Occupational health nurses are employed by businesses, government agencies, hospitals, clinics, their own businesses as well as colleges and universities. This concentration is offered to students in the Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner MSN or Post-Baccalaureate DNP, Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner MSN or Post-Baccalaureate DNP, and Leadership, Analytics and Innovation MSN programs.

Certificate in Health Informatics

Both nurses and non-nurses can earn a U-M School of Nursing Certificate in Health Informatics by completing 16 credits in a web-blended curriculum, which prepares students to sit for a variety of informatics certification exams. This certificate is for graduate students.

Certificate in Nursing Education

This certificate is designed for individuals who seek to enhance their teaching skills and techniques related to the field of nursing. The certificate in nursing education is only available to those currently in our MSN, DNP, or PhD programs at the U-M School of Nursing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question? Check for an answer below.

All core/foundational courses for this degree will take place online. For students living nearby, elective courses may be taken on campus

Students will participate in an initial 2-day on-campus orientation at the start of their program, allowing them to start the program with personal connections. Once annually, an on-campus 4-day intensive will be held, typically in May, beginning on a Tuesday and ending on a Friday. During this time, students have the opportunity to meet their classmates and their faculty as well as to participate in in-person, activity-based learning that synthesizes their online content.

Digital tools will be provided to facilitate connections between students and their faculty and classmates, including the availability of virtual office hours. An annual on-campus intensive will provide the opportunity for students to interact with both classmates and faculty in person. Online students also become a part of the U-M community, just as traditional on-the-ground students would.

Immersions are a critical element of learning in the Leadership, Analytics and Innovation MSN, providing hands-on job training. Our faculty works closely with students to identify immersion placements. Immersion placements are with preceptors and mentors who have practice/content experience in the student’s areas of interest.

Immersions are based on individual interests and can include executive/senior leaders as well as nontraditional industry leaders. This means that there is a huge range of possibilities that can be taken as immersions – this is a critical aspect of customizing our program to fit student needs.

Immersions serve as an opportunity for students to explore new paths and career trajectories. Students will declare areas of interest early in their program and electives/immersion will be available to augment and integrate their course competencies with experiential learning.

Students may be eligible to transfer up to 6 master’s-level credits.

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Key Dates and Deadlines

Fall 2022

June 1, 2022
Final application deadline
August 29, 2022
Classes Start