I live in a state that happens to have tuition reciprocity with University of North Dakota, making the PMHNP MSN quite affordable for me. This program looks good - the classes look interesting, and it even states that you are allowed to have your clinicals with a psychologist, social worker, therapist, or someone of another profession in mental health - which definitely interests me for my career direction. However ... ALL the courses are online, except for one week intensive. Two years of full-time online classes just sounds so isolating to me. I don't like staring at screens. I also don't feel that I learn as much when I'm not taking the courses in person. Has anyone gone thru a PMHNP program like this and have any feedback? The low cost makes me tempted to plan to apply, but I'm not sure it's worth sacrificing the in-person experience.
Also, I realize people who attend for-profit online NP schools might have problems with finding employment, but what about online programs through a state school like UND, which is relatively heard-of in the region I'll be working in?
Nov 15, '12
Hello priorities2. I highly recommend going to a school that fits your learning style. If you are certain that you will not learn well the didactic portion via online then do not risk failing out for low cost and other reasons. Best wishes.
Nov 15, '12
Thanks for the response! I guess my main concern would be setbacks in the hiring process. I'd be willing to learn online if it meant saving tons of money and still being able to be successful. If someone who just completed a BSN proceeded to do an 2 yr online PMHNP degree from UND be seen as having too little in-person experience in hiring? Also, how feasible is it to go to school full-time online at UND and work part-time as a psych RN? Maybe even a day per week? Are such jobs even available?
Nov 16, '12
I would caution you about clinicals with members of other mental health disciplines. A big (the biggest?) part of the psych NP role is prescribing. How much experience are you going to get prescribing if you are doing clinicals with individuals who don't prescribe? I would be v. surprised (and suspicious) if you're allowed to do clinicals with individuals in roles other than the role for which you're being educated/prepared. If it were me, I would be unwilling to do clinicals with anyone other than psych NPs and psychiatrists.
Nov 16, '12
I actually misunderstood what I had read before. The preceptor must be a PMH APRN, but the supervisor at the site could be someone of a different mental health profession. I'm not exactly sure what the difference between supervisor and preceptor is, but I think you make a great point about getting enough clinical experience with prescribing.
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