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Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist

Master of Science in Nursing

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Program Intro

Adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialists directly manage the care of adult-gerontology patients, including health promotion, symptom management, patient education and consultation.

They also advance nursing practice within their specialty and lead efforts to integrate evidence-based practices throughout the healthcare system. Clinical nurse specialists usually practice in hospitals or outpatient settings.

Our adult-gerontology program prepares excellent graduates who hold diverse roles in the healthcare field. You’ll learn to improve patient outcomes by making an impact on patient care, nursing practice and organizational systems. You’ll also acquire valuable experience embedding best evidence into your practice as you work with preceptors in clinical settings.

Curriculum Overview

Begin your program with courses in advanced nursing practice, evidence-based practice, advanced pathophysiology, pharmacology and physical assessment. From this foundation, move into final-year courses where, in combination with class content, you’ll work with a preceptor of your choice to gain experience meeting CNS practice competencies.

You can currently complete this degree at PNW’s Hammond campus.

As a part-time student, you’ll take core master’s nursing courses and begin your pathophysiology course sequence.

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  • NUR 50200 – Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing
  • NUR 50300 – Advanced Health Assessment
  • NUR 57400 – Pathophysiologic Concepts For Advanced Practice Nursing

Complete the remaining core master’s nursing courses and advanced core courses in advanced pharmacology, assessment and health promotion.

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  • UR 57500 – Pathophysiologic Concepts For Advanced Practice Nursing II
  • NUR 51100 – Health Promotion For Advanced Practice In Nursing
  • NUR 60000 – Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist I

Take AGCNS courses and clinical practicum courses. Full-time students can complete all courses in two years.

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  • NUR 61800 – Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist II
  • NUR 62000 – Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Practicum II
  • NUR 65800 – Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Practicum III: Clinical Synthesis

Program Requirements

Requirements for admission into this program include:

  • Graduation from an accredited baccalaureate program in nursing
  • Minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4 point scale or equivalent “B” average
  • Current U.S. RN (Registered Nurse) licensure
  • Evidence of successful completion of an introductory statistics course
  • International degree-seeking applicants whose native language is not English must also meet Purdue University graduate school requirements


Family nurse practitioner program graduates enter the marketplace with real-world experience and vital skills under the guidance of expert faculty. You’ll hone your ability to acquire, appraise, and implement best practices.

Our College of Nursing is home to the Indiana Center for Evidence Based Nursing Practice, an Affiliate Center of JBI.

A lion sculpture on PNW's campus PNW graduates at commencement


As a graduate of this program, you’ll be able to:

  • Synthesize nursing knowledge, patient preferences and the best available evidence to make optimal decisions
  • Grow as a leader who can influence the delivery of healthcare
  • Develop a professional philosophy that reflects the humanistic values of nursing


Several scholarships are available for AGCNS students, including the Lorraine Kirkley scholarship for those with an interest in cardiovascular nursing. Graduate assistantships are also available.

See All Nursing Scholarships

Beyond the Classroom

We encourage you to get involved in organizations and activities like:

  • American Association of Nurse Practitioners
  • Society for Nurses in Advanced Practice
  • Sigma Theta Tau (by invitation to eligible students)

Career Paths

AGCNS graduates have a number of career options, including:

  • Management of patient populations
  • Leadership roles in nursing practice
  • Internal and external consulting


AGCNS alumni are usually employed by hospital systems but may work in a variety of other healthcare settings.


Our program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the university is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Upon graduation, you’ll be eligible to take ANCC’s AGCNS and ACCNS’ AG certification exams.

Meet the Faculty

Mary Morrow, Ph.D., RN, APRN, ACNS-BC

AG-CNS Program Coordinator and Associate Professor

Mary Morrow is an Assistant Professor in the College of Nursing. Her teaching focus is advanced practice nursing and knowledge translation in practice. Her research foci are developing a minority RN

Manisa Baker, D.N.P., APRN, RN, CCNS, CCRN-K

Assistant Professor

Baker is an assistant professor in the College of Nursing. Her teaching responsibilities include coursework in both the undergraduate and graduate programs.

Janet Garwood D.N.P., M.S.N.-Ed, RN, CNE

Associate Professor

I am currently an associate professor and teach in both the graduate and undergraduate College of Nursing.

A PNW Student in the Classroom

Take the Next Step

Our graduate studies staff is ready to help you take the next step! Contact us at (219) 989-2257 or to see how PNW’s flexible programs can meet your needs.