Learn More About the DEMSN at Gwynedd Mercy University

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  • 20-month program
  • Gwynedd Valley, PA (suburban Philadelphia)
  • Two starts per year

Why Choose Gwynedd Mercy University’s DEMSN Program?

Make the transition to nursing—and prepare to drive change in healthcare systems—with a Direct Entry MSN from a leading regional school. Located northwest of Philadelphia, the Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions at Gwynedd Mercy University (GMercyU) has been producing exceptional nurses for more than 60 years.

The GMercyU DEMSN program offers you:

  • Post-Master’s Certification Option

    GMercyU offers preparation for both the NCLEX-RN licensure exam and the option to pursue a post-master’s Clinical Nurse Leader certificate.

  • A Reputation for Excellence

    GMercyU has been repeatedly recognized for quality and innovation in graduate nursing education.

  • Extensive Clinical Preparation

    Build patient care skills in our advanced simulation labs, then gain real-world clinical experience with GMercyU’s strong regional network of more than 100 healthcare partners.

  • A Respect for Evidence-Based Practice

    Gain advanced skills for evaluating nursing and healthcare research and applying it in practice.

Program Structure

The 72-credit GMercyU DEMSN equips you to enter nursing with a master’s degree plus leadership preparation in as few as 20 months of study. The program features:

  • Core Curriculum

    Including health science foundations, nursing administration, research and leadership, ethics, policy and more.

  • Clinical Training

    Learn essential patient care skills through simulated clinical experiences in GMercyU’s advanced labs.

  • Clinical Practicum Experience

    Complete clinical rotations in a range of practice settings throughout the Philadelphia area.


  • Advanced Assessment and Lab for Advanced Nursing Roles

  • Advanced Pathophysiology for Advanced Nursing Roles

  • Advanced Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Nursing Roles

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development l: Nursing Care of Persons with Mental and Behavioral Health Issues

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development ll: Nursing Care of Adults with Common Health Problems

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development lll: Nursing Care of Women, Children, and Families

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development IV: Nursing Care of Adults with Complex Health Problems

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development V: Community Health Nursing

  • Clinical Practice and Role Development VI: Synthesis of Learning Practicum

  • Concepts in Gerontological Nursing

  • Foundations to Professional Nursing Leadership and the Healthcare System

  • Fundamentals of Nursing

  • Health Assessment

  • Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Across the Lifespan and Across the Globe

  • Introduction to Pathophysiology and Pharmacology Concepts for Advanced Nursing Roles

  • Leadership and Health Policy

  • Nursing Ethics and the Larger Healthcare Arena

  • Theoretical Foundations for Advanced Nursing Roles

  • Nursing Research Methodology and Evidence-Based Practice

Admission Requirements

Apply Today

GMercyU requires applicants to the DEMSN program to hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university (or international equivalent) in any academic major other than nursing. Applicants must have earned a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in all upper-level bachelor’s degree courses (junior and senior year).

Contact Gwynedd Mercy University to learn more about their admission requirements.

Prerequisite Courses

GMercyU requires DEMSN applicants to have completed the following prerequisites with a 3.3 GPA or better within seven years of beginning the program:

  • Anatomy and Physiology I (lecture and lab)
  • Anatomy and Physiology II (lecture and lab)
  • Developmental Psychology (with a focus across the lifespan)
  • General Chemistry II or equivalent (lecture and lab)
  • Microbiology (lecture and lab)
  • Nutrition (taught by a registered dietician)
  • Statistics or Biostatistics

90% of GMercyU accelerated nursing program students take or re-take at least one prerequisite course prior to beginning Direct Entry MSN courses. GMercyU offers prerequisite completion to nursing applicants. Learn more here.


The Direct-Entry Master of Science in Nursing program in Gwynedd Mercy University’s Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Licensure: This program is designed to meet the licensure requirements of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. If you reside in a different state, you should carefully review your home state’s licensure requirements prior to enrolling in this program. For more information, please visit the program’s Licensure Requirements page.

Gwynedd Mercy University DEMSN Program FAQ

How long is GMercyU’s DEMSN program?

The GMercyU DEMSN program takes as few as 20 months to complete.

How much does the GMercyU DEMSN program cost?

As of 2024-2025, tuition for the GMercyU DEMSN is $775 per credit hour. The total tuition cost for the 72-credit program is $59,250.

Additional fees may apply, and you will also need to purchase books and materials. Financial aid is available to those who qualify. Tuition costs are subject to change.

What is the value of earning a DEMSN?

When you earn your Direct-Entry MSN with GMercyU, you’re developing advanced skills with a regionally respected nursing school. Graduates will be prepared to enter the nursing field with skills in leadership, patient advocacy, direct patient care, and more. Learn more about what a DEMSN can offer you here.

How much can you make with a Direct Entry MSN degree from GMercyU?

At the beginning of your nursing career, you can expect to earn a salary in line with that of registered nurses. In Pennsylvania, nursing salaries were as follows in May 2021*:

  • Media annual salary: $76,940
  • Lowest 10%: $59,040 or less
  • Highest: 10% $98,680 or more 1

Salary varies by employer and by region.

*The most recent year for which data is available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).