Those who complete the certificate are recognized for their specialized skills, knowledge, and abilities in the nurse educator role. The certification of nurse educators provides a means for faculty members to demonstrate their expertise in the science of nursing education. Obtaining the certificate signifies a commitment to professional development and to continuously improve the methods of teaching needed in the field of nursing.

Student 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.

This program offers two pathways:

  1. Nurse Educator Certificate Program for students currently enrolled in a nursing doctoral program (DNP or Ph.D.)
  2. Nurse Educator Capstone Certificate Program for master's- or doctoral-prepared nurses who are not currently enrolled in a nursing doctoral program

Admission Timeline

Students are admitted to the certificate to begin in the spring session only. The important dates are:

  • Application Opens: Early September
  • Application Deadline: November 1. All materials (including transcripts) must be received by the deadline.
  • Review of Applications: November
  • Notification of Decision: Early December

Application Process

If you are in a doctoral program at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, communicate your interest in the certificate to your program director or graduate academic services coordinator and use the online declaration form. If you are not currently enrolled in a doctoral program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the same curricula is also offered as a capstone certificate for special students. More information can be found here.

Submit All Materials To:

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

To be eligible to complete the Nurse Educator Certificate, students must have:

  1. A master's degree from an accredited nursing program or be currently enrolled in a DNP or Ph.D. in nursing program,
  2. An RN license,
  3. An M.S. GPA of at least 3.0

The certificate is a 9-credit program of study that includes graduate-level foundational and practicum work. The three required courses cover the foundation of teaching/learning and curriculum in nursing education, with an emphasis on evidence-based teaching. Courses are delivered in a blended learning format—coursework is completed primarily online, with regularly scheduled class sessions on campus.

The program can be completed in one year, January–December, during a spring, summer and fall terms.

The curriculum and requirements for the Nurse Educator Certificate Program are prescribed; few exceptions or course substitutions permitted. Exceptions must be approved by the certificate program director.

The three courses are:

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