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College of Nursing

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Master's Programs

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) program prepares you to provide holistic, mental health care integrating neuroscientific principles of behavior, experience and psychopharmacology with psychotherapy, consultation, and trauma-related care across the patient lifespan.

As an MSN PMHNP student, you’ll enjoy the flexibility of online coursework that fits your schedule. Gain confidence as a provider through hands-on clinical experience with your preceptor and through telehealth delivery to patients in rural areas.

Upon program completion, you will be eligible to sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s PMHNP exam. Our graduates practice in diverse settings, including nurse-managed clinics, inpatient psychiatric facilities, home health, private psychiatric practices, addiction centers, general ambulatory clinics, and schools.

The MSN-PMHNP program is a total of 47 credits and takes 8 semesters to complete and all didactic coursework is online, in distance format. 

1st semester
  • NURS 700 -  Theoretical and Conceptual Foundation for Nursing
  • NURS 717 - Application of Basic Statistics for Nursing Practice and Service Management
2nd semester
  • NURS 707 - Advanced Pathophysiology for Nurses
  • NURS 720 - Clinical Application of Population Analysis
3rd semester
  • NURS 702 - Pharmacological Management of Pediatric, Adult and Gerontological Patients Across the Lifespan
  • NURS 790 - Research Methods for Nursing  A
4th semester
  • NURS 704 - Advanced Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning+
  • NURS 791 - Seminar in Clinical Nursing Research B
5th semester
  • NURS 718 - Diagnostic Interpretation and Therapeutic Modalities
  • NURS 761 - Neuroscientific Basis of Behavior and Psychopharmacological Treatment
6th semester
  • NURS 763 - Advanced Psychiatric Nurse Practicum I: Management of Psychiatric/Mental Health Conditions*
7th semester
  • NURS 764 - Advanced Psychiatric Nurse Practicum II: Management of Complex Psychiatric/Mental Health Conditions*
8th semester
  • NURS 768 - Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: Legal, Ethical and Role Transition
  • NURS 768A - Advanced Psychiatric Nurse Practicum III: Role Development*

Total 47 credits / 672 direct clinical hours
+on campus immersion
*course requires clinical hours
 Aindicates A term, B indicates B term. If not noted, full semester course.

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing from a nationally accredited program
  • Minimum Cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended must be submitted, whether you received a degree or not.  Applicants who attended a BSN program that issued pass or fail grades for all classes will not be considered a competitive applicant.
  • Minimum of 2400 hours of nursing experience within the past 24 months. This includes full time or part time nursing experience. Preferred clinical experience in psych or related field.
  • Submit a personal statement
  • Current CV or Resume
  • Three professional references - The professional recommendation form should come from individuals with a master's or higher in a healthcare field who can evaluate your potential for success in a graduate program. (Letters of recommendation cannot be used in lieu of our recommendation form.) Recommendations from family members are not appropriate. 
  • Copy of unencumbered RN license
  • Current BLS certification
  • GRE not required
All application materials (except official transcripts) will be submitted via the College of Nursing's graduate application portal

Official transcripts must be sent to The Graduate School. Review the degree requirements before you apply.


The MSN, PMHNP program accepts students for fall entry. 

Admission cycle for fall entry:

  • Application opens: November 1
  • Early decision deadline: February 1
  • Final decision deadline: April 15

MSN program costs depend on several factors. For estimated costs, view:

Graduate Programs Cost Estimates 2023-2024

The Office of Financial Aid provides the full breakdown of the estimated cost to attend. For additional tuition and fee information, visit the Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees website.

Financial aid is available. To determine your eligibility, complete the FAFSA form on the university’s Financial Aid website. The College of Nursing also offers general scholarships. In addition, other scholarship and financial aid opportunities are available through The Graduate School and the university’s Financial Aid and Scholarships office.

View our video Information Session with graduate program faculty and staff.

Contact Us

Phone: 803-777-9080

Williams-Brice Building, Room 208
1601 Greene St.
Columbia, SC 29208

Meet the Program Directors


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