Advice on certificate vs masters in nursing informatics

  1. 0
    I was recently knocked back for an informatics position that favored the candidiate with the formal informatics education. I have a Bachelors of Nursing and Master of Science in Bioengineering and don't want to have to do another Masters degree. Would a certificate course for 12 credit hours in Nursing Informatics provide the necessary formal education for an entry level nurse informatics position? Would there be additional courses needed? I have been looking into the canyon college nurse informatics certificate course - does anyone have any experience with this course or any recommendations?

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  2. 10 Comments...

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    I'm assuming you actually confirmed with the hiring manager, HR or the recruiter that the tipping point really was the other candidate's Informatics Education and not that he or she had more actual informatics practice experience? I think it also all depends on what strengths and skill sets they are looking for in the particular position to be filled.

    I'm sure an informatics certificate would only add to your marketability. Just do your homework related to course content and really determine if the certificate will provide you with the specific skills you want and need. There are some certificate programs that focus more on Systems. Some focus on Decision Support and then others have more of a concentration in NI theory and or Nursing Management.

    I'd recommend Excelsior, Duke and U of Maryland's certificate programs. Look at previous posts on this forum and you will see other recommendations as well.
    Good Luck!


    Quote from UKRNinUSA
    I was recently knocked back for an informatics position that favored the candidiate with the formal informatics education. I have a Bachelors of Nursing and Master of Science in Bioengineering and don't want to have to do another Masters degree. Would a certificate course for 12 credit hours in Nursing Informatics provide the necessary formal education for an entry level nurse informatics position? Would there be additional courses needed? I have been looking into the canyon college nurse informatics certificate course - does anyone have any experience with this course or any recommendations?
    sekishin likes this.
  4. 0
    Sometimes it is hard to get your foot in the door. Consider volunteering to work as a "super user" at your current job. Another thought is to do some informational interviews with current systems analysts or nurses working in nursing informatics positions.

    You might find the Weekend Immersion in Nursing Informatics Course useful. Take a look at http://www.winiconference.net for more details and links about nursing informatics.

    Good luck
    KSmith1963
  5. 0
    I have a similar concern as UKRNinUSA. I have a BS in nursing and a masters in Computer Science. I do not want a second masters degree. Will a certificate in Informatics be enough to get me through the "door" in the informatics field? I had worked as a programmer for more than 10yrs. and currently as a nurse for 4.5 yrs. Can anyone comment?
    Thanks
  6. 2
    5 years later I can answer my own question:
    To get through the door, become a superuser. Lots of RN informatics jobs are coming up due to the Medicare/Medicaid EHR Incentive Program which provides incentive payments to hospitals that demonstrate meaningful use of the electronic health record. More opportunities exist with large organizations that have multiple facilities. An informatics certificate would be icing on the cake of an already great resume -you can find one online. Good luck!
    sekishin and rninformatics like this.
  7. 1
    Kwansima, have you tried applying to Informatics positions? I have similar education (Bachelors in C.S. and Nursing) and work experience. Applied to various Informatics positions and received a lot of interview requests. I landed my first Informatics position without having a Master's or certificate in Nursing Informatics. At the moment, I am working on a Master's in Administration (with Nursing Informatics focus).
    rninformatics likes this.
  8. 2
    I am a nurse with a MS in Computer Science and a MS in nursing. I have no formal nursing informatics education/certificate, but have worked in healthcare informatics for over 20 years. For those in this discussion group that have some type of technical degree (such as in computer science) an excellent source for positions are within the vendor community, particularly R&D positions for software development, system analysis and design, or in software quality. These are positions you will not find in a search for nursing or nursing informatics, but in searches for programmers, software engineers, etc. Your search criteria will be different. Although the positions sound technical, the vendor will definitely take advantage of your clinical background and give you tasks that are very much in the realm of nursing informatics. Look for technical positions that are associated with HIT vendors is the best way to start. These positions are not necessarily found in the job banks of HIT organizations which tend to focus more on non-vendor positions or if vendor positions - deal with system installation/training, not R&D development. Looking at vendor's web pages or a general job search engine may help to find those positions. In addition, many vendors are having difficulty finding software engineers which could open even more doors for you. If you want to work within a healthcare organization in particular, already have a MS in something, find doors are closed to you, and you already have nursing experience, then a certificate in nursing informatics will definitely help.
    sekishin and rninformatics like this.
  9. 0
    Thanks for your comment and suggestions. I will venture out and start searching. I must admit, I haven't done any search for such a position. I have been very active in my current organization as a super-user in informatics issues.
    Thanks again.
  10. 0
    Hi, can you define the term, 'super user?' I am just starting to look into informatics . . .
  11. 0
    It doesn't hurt. I just got a job with a Health Information Services company as a Senior Clinical Systems Analyst supporting CPOE. My background includes a BS in Information Technology and an AS in Nursing. I do have 7 years systems analyst experience, but only 18 months as an RN. I am currently enrolled in a graduate level Medical Informatics Certificate program. I have 2 more classes to go. I am debating dropping the certificate program to get the MSN in Informatics. I just used the certificate to get my foot in the door.


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