The Best Massachusetts Online Nurse Practitioner Programs 2021 icon

The Best Massachusetts Online Nurse Practitioner Programs 2021

| Connie Smith

The Best Massachusetts Online Nurse Practitioner Programs 2021 mini logo

Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?

Whether you’re looking to get your pre-licensure degree or taking the next step in your career, the education you need could be more affordable than you think. Find the right nursing program for you.

More than 290,000 nurse practitioners (NPs) hold licenses in the U.S., with nearly 90% certified in primary care and 65% specializing as family nurse practitioners (FNPs). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the 6,520 working NPs in Massachusetts earn an average annual salary of $122,240, which exceeds the national annual NP salary of $111,840.

Nurse practitioner programs in Massachusetts prepare registered nurses (RNs) for in-demand, high-level nursing careers and award master of science in nursing degrees (MSNs). Graduates qualify for advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) licenses and national specialty area certification.

Students can complete their degrees in two years, including required clinical practicums. Distance learners can expect coursework in advanced nursing and specialty topics delivered online with clinical hours completed at a local hospital or healthcare facility.

Explore our rankings for program details.

Read about our ranking methodology

Applying to an Online Nurse Practitioner Program in Massachusetts

Nurse practitioner programs in Massachusetts typically require an active, unencumbered RN license, a bachelor of science in nursing, and a 3.0 minimum GPA. Other common prerequisites include 1-2 years of clinical RN experience, GRE scores, and completion of an undergraduate statistics course.

Applicants usually submit transcripts, a personal statement, and 2-3 recommendation letters. Some candidates may be invited to interview.

Massachusetts requires NPs to hold APRN licenses and to maintain their RN licenses and national certification. Certification requires completing an exam in a specialty area, such as adult-gerontology, family practice, mental health, neonatal, oncology, or pediatrics.

NPs who want to prescribe medication complete additional education hours, register with the state's controlled substances regulation department and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, and enroll in the Massachusetts Prescription Monitoring Program.

Featured Online Programs

Explore the Best Massachusetts Online Nurse Practitioner Programs and School Info

Simmons University View School Profile Boston, MA 80% 66% 51% New England Commission on Higher Education

Simmons offers the highest-ranked registered nurse to master of science in nursing (RN-to-MSN) with a family nurse practitioner (FNP) specialty program in Massachusetts. This online degree for working RNs has an above-average board pass rate of 96.3%. Specialists help enrollees find clinical placements in their own communities.

The program includes 800 clinical hours and 68 credits. Students can join on a full-time or part-time basis.

Each prospective enrollee receives an admissions counselor to help them prepare a strong application and assist them to identify alternatives to certain admission criteria if necessary.

  • Program(s): RN-to-MSN FNP
  • Campus: Boston, Massachusetts
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: $1,210 per credit
  • Admission Requirements: RN license; associate degree in nursing or diploma from a nursing program; minimum 3.0 GPA preferred; resume; personal statement; transcript(s); three recommendations
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 32 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 96.3%
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid
Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences View School Profile Boston, MA 69% 66% 27% New England Commission on Higher Education

MCPHS offers an online master of science in nursing (MSN) for psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (PMHNPs) as one of the highest-ranked nurse practitioner programs in Massachusetts. Designed for part-time students, this pathway requires three 1-3 day residencies on campus. Enrollees can engage in the required fieldwork in their communities.

Coursework includes health assessment, counseling theory and practice, and psychopharmacology. During the first year, learners take six credits per semester and either seven or 10 during the second year. Each year includes clinical hours, beginning in the last semester of the first year.

  • Program(s): MSN-PMHNP
  • Campus: Boston, Massachusetts
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: $1,235 per credit
  • Admission Requirements: Registered nurse license; bachelor of science in nursing; minimum 3.0 GPA preferred; resume; transcript(s); one recommendation
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 93%
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid
Regis College View School Profile Weston, MA 57% 68% 31% New England Commission on Higher Education

Regis offers an online master of science in nursing family nurse practitioner (MSN-FNP) program. This online program mirrors the on-campus program, which is one of the largest nursing programs in Massachusetts.

The NP exam pass rate is a higher-than-average 92%, and the Regis School of Nursing was the first in New England to receive distinction as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education. The curriculum includes pathophysiology, health assessment, health promotion, and care of the family.

The employees of certain companies, members of the military, federal government employees, and Regis alumni receive eligibility for tuition discounts.

  • Program(s): MSN-FNP
  • Campus: Weston, Massachusetts
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing
  • Tuition: $980 per credit
  • Admission Requirements: Registered nurse license; bachelor of science in nursing; minimum 2.75 GPA preferred; undergraduate statistics class with "C" or higher grade; two years of clinical RN experience (preferred); resume; transcript(s); three recommendations
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 28 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 92%
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid
American International College View School Profile Springfield, MA 47% 83% 3% New England Commission on Higher Education

AIC's online nurse practitioner (NP) program, one of the higher-rated master of science in nursing (MSN)-NP programs in Massachusetts, offers nursing educator, nursing administration, and family nurse practitioner specializations. Base courses across all specializations include advanced nursing, nursing research, and healthcare organizations.

During the first year, each credit costs $775, considerably less than most other NP programs in Massachusetts. During the second year, the cost rises to $950 per credit.

Because the program is online, the admissions department urges students living outside Massachusetts or Connecticut to contact them to ensure that the program is valid in their state.

  • Program(s): MSN-NP
  • Campus: Springfield, Massachusetts
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: $775 per credit for the first year; $950 per credit for the second year
  • Admission Requirements: Registered nurse license; bachelor of science in nursing; minimum 3.0 GPA; transcript(s); two recommendations; personal essay
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 88%
  • School Site: Tuition | Financial aid

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to become a nurse practitioner in Massachusetts? Most NP and FNP programs in Massachusetts require two years of full-time study. Some schools offer accelerated options that learners can complete in a year or less. Many RNs continue working during their NP training programs and study part time, which adds a year or two to their program.
What is accreditation and why is it important? Licensure boards, certification organizations, and many employers require NPs to graduate from a program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing. Accreditation indicates that a program undergoes regular review, adheres to rigorous academic standards, and effectively prepares NPs for their future roles.
Is a nurse practitioner a good job in Massachusetts? In line with the nationwide nursing shortage, Massachusetts offers numerous opportunities for advanced practice nurses like NPs, especially in the Boston metropolitan area. According to BLS data, NP salaries in Massachusetts skew toward the upper end; for example, New Bedford, MA, ranks among the top ten highest paying U.S. urban areas for NPs at a mean $144,450 annually.
What can I do as a nurse practitioner in Massachusetts? NPs and FNPs in Massachusetts provide primary patient care and perform many of the same duties as physicians. Tasks include assessing and examining patients, developing treatment and care plans, performing tests and diagnoses, prescribing medication, and working as part of teams of healthcare professionals.

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