5 Best Florida Nurse Practitioner Programs + Requirements

Nurse practitioners are advanced practice professionals. They are state-licensed to work in a specific field of health care, such as mental health, primary care or pediatrics. In order to become a nurse practitioner, candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree and relevant experience. In the past, a master’s degree was all that was required in order to become a nurse practitioner but the AACN has specified that programs should be delivered at the doctoral degree level from this year onwards.

It is very important to spend some time reviewing the different schools that offer nurse practitioner programs in order to find the one that best suits your personal needs. Below are what we consider to be the five best nurse practitioner programs in Florida. We have also included some information on how to become a nurse practitioner in the state.

1. Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University

Three degree options are offered at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. The goal of the programs is to develop highly knowledgeable professionals in important fields of healthcare. The emphasis is on evidence-based practice.

  • Campus: Tallahassee, FL
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: ACEN
  • Tuition: $9,876 for in-state students and $23,965 for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: 42 credits
  • Online availability: No
  • Degree requirements: BSN, RN license, GPA of 3.0 or GRE, prerequisite courses, 3 letters of reference, physical examination, personal statement, TOEFL
  • Programs: Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner, Post-Master’s Certificate
  • School Site: Tuition and Financial Aid

2. Florida Atlantic University

Florida Atlantic University has maintained its two master’s nurse practitioner programs, as well as offering a DNP program. All require an extensive amount of clinical work. The DNP is offered mainly online, with any campus attendance organized on evenings and weekends.

  • Campus: Boca Raton, FL
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: CCNE
  • Tuition: $6,657 for in-state students and $17,885 for out-of-state
  • Minimum time commitment: 46 credit hours for AGNP, 49 credit hours for FNP, 2 years for DNP
  • Online availability: Some
  • Degree requirements: BSN, GRE or MAT, essay, 1 letter of recommendation, resume, RN license, transcripts, prerequisite courses, criminal background check
  • Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, DNP, BSN to DNP
  • School Site: Tuition and Financial Aid
 

3. Florida International University

At Florida International University, a range of different nurse practitioner programs are offered at master’s, post-master’s and doctorate level. Each program calls for a number of clinical hours. The exact number varies depending on the chosen program but is at least 600 hours.

  • Campus: Miami, FL
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: CCNE
  • Tuition: $10,269 for in-state students and $21,791 for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: Varies depending on program
  • Online availability: No
  • Degree requirements: Personal interview, transcripts, 3 letters of reference, resume, RN license, personal statement
  • Programs: Advanced Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Advanced Child Nurse Practitioner, Advanced Family Nurse Practitioner and Advanced Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Post-Master’s certificate, DNP
  • School Site: Tuition and Financial Aid

4. Florida State University

Florida State University has dropped its master’s degree program for Family Nurse Practitioners and fully replaced it with a DNP. The majority of classes are offered virtually and through video conferences. It is an intensive, 90-credit degree program that also calls for 1,000 hours of practical experience.

  • Campus: Panama City and Sarasota-Bradenton, FL
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: CCNE
  • Tuition: $11,505 for in-state students and $25,937 for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: 90 credits
  • Online availability: Some
  • Degree requirements: Florida resident, BSN, GRE or MAT, RN license, transcripts, 2 letters of recommendation, background check
  • Programs: DNP FNP
  • School Site: Tuition and Financial Aid

5. Nova Southeastern University

Nova Southeastern University allows students to complete their DNP fully online. Prospective students are expected to already hold a master’s degree in nursing or related field. Graduates are ready to take on positions of leadership in the field.

  • Campus: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation: CCNE
  • Tuition: $750 per credit hour
  • Minimum time commitment: 24-36 months
  • Online availability: Yes
  • Degree requirements: MSN, transcripts, personal statement, prerequisite courses, GPA of 3.0, RN license, 2 letters of reference
  • Programs: DNP
  • School Site: Tuition and Financial Aid

Steps to Become a Nurse Practitioner in Florida

Since the beginning of this year, a doctorate degree is required to become a nurse practitioner in Florida. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is a projected job growth of 34% between now and 2022 in the field, and the average salary nationwide stands at $92,670.

The steps to become an NP in Florida are:

1. Hold a registered nurse license at bachelor’s level. Because the requirement of holding a DNP is relatively new for nurse practitioners, a number of schools are now offering direct BSN to DNP programs. However, in most cases, students will first have to complete a master’s degree before moving on to their DNP. Both the bachelor and master’s degree must be accredited by CCNE or ACEN.

2. Get a national certification for Nurse Practitioners.

3. Become licensed through the Florida Board of Nursing. In Florida, nurse practitioners are allowed to write prescriptions and will carry their own prescription pad. However, they are not allowed to prescribe controlled substances.

Once certified by the Board, you will be licensed as an Advanced Registration Nurse Practitioner (ARNP). This means that you also hold a Florida RN (registered nurse) license. The ARNP license will also show which area of specialization you are in.

4. Renew your license every two years, which can be done online.

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