What's the difference between completing a MSN-FNP program and getting certification

  1. Hi Nurse Beth,
    What is the difference in the FNP program and getting an MSN and certificate? I have a BSN and would like to become a family nurse practitioner.



    Dear Wants FNP,

    When you complete a family nurse practitioner (FNP) program, you are awarded a Master’s degree in nursing (MSN). The MSN is an academic degree. However you are not a credentialed FNP- you must then take your certification exam.

    Completing the accredited FNP program makes you eligible to take your certification exam for FNP.

    It is similar to earning an ADN or BSN degree. They qualify you to take your nursing boards but don’t automatically make you an RN.

    Likewise completing an accredited FNP programs confers an MSN degree and qualifies you to take your certification exam, but does not make you an FNP.


    Best wishes,

    Nurse Beth

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