The Nurse Educator Capstone Certificate Program is for working, master’s-prepared nurses who are currently teaching and would like to improve their skills, or for those who’d like to begin their teaching careers. The University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Nursing is internationally recognized for its evidence-based nursing education.  Rather than simply offering a track within the curriculum, it trains nurse educators with a highly respected certificate program that you can complete in 3 semesters.

Designed for working professionals, the 9-credit Nurse Educator Capstone Certificate Program is offered online. There are also periodic face-to-face sessions on the UW–Madison campus and a teaching practicum that students can arrange close to home. Some complete the certificate within a calendar year, while others take two years or more, depending on their needs.

Students who complete the certificate are eligible to sit for the National League for Nursing (NLN) Certified Nurse Educator Examination. NLN recognizes the nurse educator role as a specialty area of practice.

Further detail, including tuition and costs, is available on the program website.

UW–Madison School of Nursing
Signe Skott Cooper Hall
701 Highland Avenue
Madison, WI 53705
Phone: 608-263-5200

ADMISSIONS

Applicant minimal requirements:

  • Master’s degree from an accredited nursing program or currently enrolled in a DNP or Ph.D. in nursing program
  • RN license
  • MS GPA of 3.0

Students are admitted to begin in the spring term only, with an application deadline of November 1 and admission notification in December. A holistic review of all application materials occurs. Regardless of experience level, ideal candidates possess a desire to expand their knowledge and understanding of the science of nursing education. The program seeks candidates who are committed to providing evidence-based nursing education and who understand the demands of the program. Adult Career and Special Student Services (ACSSS) is the admitting office for all University Special students. However, the School of Nursing makes the final admission decision upon review of all applicant materials.

Application steps

A complete application includes the following information:

  1. An online application for admission as a University Special student, selecting UNCS Capstone Certificate and the program: Nurse Educator. This application is received and processed by ACSSS with final decision held for approval from the specific capstone certificate coordinator. 
  2. Submit required materials to the School of Nursing at the address below. To include in one envelope:

In addition, three letters of recommendation sent directly to the address below.

Submit All Materials to:

NECP Coordinator/Graduate Admissions
UW–Madison School of Nursing
Suite 1100 Cooper Hall
701 Highland Avenue
Madison WI 53705

Applicants will receive admissions decision in December.

ENROLLMENT

Admitted students receive a formal letter of admission to UW–Madison from Adult Career and Special Student Services along with general enrollment information.

The School of Nursing will send an email to admitted students with specific information pertaining to enrollment in courses for spring and completion of the capstone program. 

  • Must have a minimum GPA of 2.000
  • Certificate requires 9 credits
Required Courses
NURSING 785 Foundations of Curriculum Development and Evaluation in Nursing Education3
NURSING 786 Foundations of Teaching and Learning in Nursing3
NURSING 787 Nursing Education Practicum3
Total Credits9

1. Implement teaching strategies based on educational theory/student needs. Use technology to support teaching. Practice communication, reflective thinking, creating learning opportunities. Model enthusiasm, facilitate learning, respond to unexpected events, develop collegial relationships within clinical agencies, use evidence based practice and teaching, and foster safe learning environments.

2. Identify individual learning needs, provide resources, advise learners, create learning environments, and foster the development of learners in the cognitive, psychomotor, and affective domains.

3. Provide input on nursing program standards. Incorporate current research in assessment strategies, analyze available resources, use assessment instruments. Implement evaluation strategies that are appropriate to learning goals, analyze data, use date to enhance teaching/learning process. Advise learners regarding assessment criteria and provide timely, constructive feedback to learners.

4. Demonstrate knowledge of curriculum development,  actively participate and lead curriculum and course design. Analyze and revise curriculum based on program evaluation, implement curricular revisions using change theories and strategies,  collaborate with community and clinical partners. Design, implement and evaluate program assessment plans.

5. Promote one's socialization to the educator role, maintain professional memberships and activity in professional organizations. Demonstrate lifelong learning, participate in professional development, manage teaching, scholarship/service demands. Use feedback. Practice according to legal and ethical standards, mentor faculty colleagues, engage in self-reflection to improve teaching practices.

6. a) Function as change agent, enhance nursing visibility, participate in interdisciplinary efforts, develop leadership, advocate for nursing/education in politics. b) Exhibit inquiry, use evidence-based resources, research, share teaching expertise, demonstrate integrity. c) Identify nursing/education influencers; make trend-based decisions; integrate values of respect, collegiality, caring.