I don't think there is such a thing as a minimally stressful master's in nursing program
, whether it's online or on campus. I'm finishing an online master's in nursing education in May (God willing) and am finding the lack of real contact with my professors to be a huge contributor to stress. Additionally, I have had on campus graduate level nursing courses and I think there's often more work in an online course. There seems to be a mentality, at least at my school, that since we don't attend classes in person, we need to "make up" for it by participating in blogs and discussion threads. My program also requires participation in Wimba classrooms as well as frequent presentations with Adobe Presenter (horrible software, BTW). We also have numerous group activities and meet in Wimba Pronto (a program that often makes Word and PowerPoint crash, at least on my computer). I am working harder in this online program than I did when I was in a different, on campus program---not necessarily because of academic rigor but because of the amount of tasks that are crammed into each semester.
Two of my friends quit this program and went elsewhere. One went to a program that offers some courses online and others on campus and she is very happy with her decision. Another went to Walden and is happy as well. The friend who is doing a campus-based program says that she is overwhelmed with the amount of paperwork that she has but she is much happier because she has face-to-face contact with her professors.
If you are taking a nurse educator or nursing administration program, you should have minimal clinicals. However, if you're doing an advanced practice track (NP, CNS, CRNA, CNM) you will have clinicals, often with preceptors. Some schools are good at helping students find preceptors. Others are not.
I am very happy with the NE courses at the school I'm attending but I don't think I would choose this school if I had to do it all over again. The busywork and the stress are over the top.