Nursing Administration is one of the most popular specialty fields in the field of nursing. Although there are a small minority of positions available for nurses with a bachelor’s degree, students wanting to pursue advanced careers in nursing administration will be better prepared by earning a graduate degree from one of the countries leading nursing administrator programs. In university hospitals and large, multi-hospital organizations a doctorate may be required. Course work for Nurse Administration programs includes a study of nursing theory, healthcare finance, human resource management, research and statistics.
What is a Nursing Administrator?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in health care administration is projected to grow 23 percent by 2022. The BLS expects more job growth in health practitioner offices because services once available only in hospitals can now be done in physician offices. A nurse administrator is responsible for a group of departments, an entire hospital or several hospitals. These nurses are often referred to as director of nurses, nurse executive or a vice president of nursing. The term nurse administrator is usually reserved for the most senior nurse in a healthcare facility. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reports an average annual salary of $92,810 (in May of 2014) for medical and health services managers, which include nurse administrators.
A minimum of a baccalaureate in nursing is required, however a master’s degree is the standard in the field. In large, multi-hospital organizations and university hospitals, a doctorate may be the preferred educational credential. Course work includes topics such as nursing theory, healthcare finance, human resource management, research and statistics. In many cases, a nurse administrator has little or no direct patient contact, rather is responsible for the strategic direction of the nursing services in the organization in planning, organizing and administering the clinical programs under her direction. These highly skilled nurses are required to have excellent financial management skills to develop and monitor budgets for the services they supervise. For careers in human resources, a nurse administrator is responsible for setting performance standards, hiring, supervising and disciplining staff.
What are the Nurse Administrator Masters Degree Programs?
According to the US News and World Report list of best Nursing Administrator Graduate Programs, the following universities and colleges are rated at the top of the list:
- # 1 – University of Pennsylvania – Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Tied for #2 – University of Iowa – Located in Iowa City, Iowa
- Tied for #2 – University of Michigan – Located in Ann Harbor, Michigan
- # 4 – University of Illinois – Located in Chicago, Illinois
- Tied for #5 – Johns Hopkins University – Located in Baltimore, Maryland
- Tied for #5 – University of Maryland – Located in Baltimore, Maryland
- Tied for #5 – University of North Carolina – Located in Chapel Hill, North Carolina
- # 9 – University of Alabama– Birmingham, Alabama
- # 10 –Vanderbilt University – Located in Nashville, Tennessee
You can check out this website for information on other top schools for Nursing Administration in the US:
US News and World Report List of Top Graduate Programs in Nursing Administration
How Much Will a Graduate Degree in Nursing Administration Cost?
The cost of a graduate degree in Nursing Administration varies depending on several important factors including:
- What school you choose to attend
- The specialty area you plan to work in
- What area of the country your degree is from
- The level of degree you choose to pursue
A master’s degree in Nurse Administration typically costs about $13,693-$336,620 for in-state tuition and fees of $29,020-$42,080 for out-of-state tuition and fees. This cost represents tuition and fees only for a two-year graduate program (the most common).