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List of Direct Entry MSN Programs

Welcome to directentrymsn.com! We aim to connect students who want to enter nursing, like you, with direct-entry Master of Science in Nursing programs designed for non-nursing majors. Our list of entry-level MSN programs features quality programs that offer you hands-on training from trusted nursing educators. Explore our selection of DEMSN program options below and find the one that’s right for you!

Alverno College DEMSN Program

Alverno College, located in Mesa, Arizona and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is ranked the #2 most innovative college in the Midwest for 2022 by U.S. News & World Report. Their abilities-based approach focuses on making sure you know what to do and have the confidence and decision-making capabilities to do it. You can complete your DEMSN with them in as few as 18 months. Learn more now!

Brenau University Entry-Level MSN Program (ELMSN)

You can prepare for a new nursing career in as few as 20 months with the Entry-Level MSN program at Brenau University in Norcross, GA. Featuring a blended format that combines online theory coursework with in-person lab training plus 600 hours of clinical experience, this program is designed to equip you for advanced clinical practice in about the same time you might spend earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing as a second degree. Learn more now!

Gwynedd Mercy University Direct Entry MSN Program (DEMSN)

In just 20 months you will be prepared to drive change in healthcare systems with Gwynedd Mercy University’s Direct Entry MSN program. With a master’s degree from one of Pennsylvania’s best graduate nursing schools, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and hands-on clinical experience that will allow you to thrive in your new career. Learn more now!

La Roche University Entry Level MSN Program (ELMSN)

La Roche University offers a flexible 20-month Entry Level MSN program at its campus near Pittsburgh, PA. The program features a combination of online coursework and in-person lab training, plus clinical experience. You can also pursue a post-master’s certification with La Roche after completing your ELMSN program. Learn more!

Lourdes University Direct-Entry MSN Program (DEMSN)

Lourdes University’s 20-month DEMSN program blends online coursework with 780 hours of hands-on learning over five inspiring and challenging semesters. Prepare for holistic patient care rooted in evidence-based practices with a university known for its tradition of excellence. Based in Sylvania, OH. Learn more now!

North Park University Direct Entry MSN Program (DEMSN)

Based in the heart of Chicago, IL, North Park University’s DEMSN offers students the opportunity to develop high-level nursing skills across five domains of knowledge rooted in Christian principles. The 20-month program features hands-on training in state-of-the-art simulation labs plus clinical experience within North Park University’s wide network of clinical affiliations. Find out more now!

Texas Lutheran University Direct-Entry MSN Program (DEMSN)

Earn both a BSN and MSN in as few as 20 months with the TLU DEMSN. Gain expertise for direct patient care and prepare to promote healthier living. Complete 990 hours of clinical experience ranging from the ER to community healthcare. 12 of 21 courses include some online coursework. This program is based at TLU’s New Braunfels, TX campus. See more details now!


What should I look for in a DEMSN program?

A Direct Entry MSN program should be:

Approved and Accredited – Check to see your DEMSN program of interest is approved by the school’s state board of nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). This signifies that the DEMSN program meets quality standards necessary for training you to become a nurse.

Connected to a Trusted Nursing School – Ensure that the nursing school offering your DEMSN has an established track record for nursing excellence. Look for strong job placement rates among all its nursing programs and high NCLEX-RN first-time pass rates. Don’t forget to ask about local clinical placement partnerships, too. Schools should be able to name several partners, indicating they have a strong reputation in the region.

Focused on Hands-On Skills – You’re new to the nursing profession. You want to have plenty of practice and experience with patient care skills so you have the confidence to start your career strong. Choose a DEMSN program that provides extensive hands-on training in labs and simulation settings as well as clinical placement experience that goes above and beyond the state board of nursing minimum requirements. Ask about clinical training facilities at the school as well as what types of clinical experience students tend to complete.

Is a DEMSN program right for me?

A DEMSN program is an advanced degree for people who know they want to be not just registered nurses, but nursing leaders someday. You’ll need to have a few different qualities to succeed in a program like this.

First, you should have the potential to succeed in graduate-level study. That is, you should be self-motivated and capable of assimilating lots of new technical material while managing multiple assignments.

You should also be ready for the reality of a nursing career. That means you should be capable of providing compassionate care for others even in stressful or upsetting situations. Nursing can also be a very physical career, requiring you to move around a lot throughout your day.

Finally, on entering a DEMSN program, you are preparing to earn an advanced degree in the profession. This means you should be committed to pursuing a nursing career over a long period of time. While you don’t have to know right away which direction you’ll take after finishing your MSN—whether you want to become an administrator or a nurse practitioner, for instance—you should be open to exploring your options.

Is getting an MSN worth it?

Yes. Entering nursing with your MSN offers you many benefits. You can:

Open the door to an advanced career path more quickly: with your MSN, you can pursue post-master’s certification in a nursing specialty area, prepare for management career paths, or take the next step toward doctoral-level study in a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) or nursing-related PhD program.

Is it better to get an MSN on-ground or online?

You cannot earn a Direct Entry MSN degree entirely online. This is because, as a new nurse, you need to develop hands-on care skills through in-person instruction before gaining the clinical experience your program requires. (You should also expect to commit full-time to your degree, particularly during clinical experience.)

However, some Direct Entry MSN programs reduce the amount of time you need to spend on campus by offering some theory coursework online. These “blended” or “hybrid” programs can make balancing life and school more manageable.

Want to Become an RN with a Master’s?

Our Direct Entry MSN programs make it possible. Learn more.