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Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Online
Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS)

Earn a certificate of advanced graduate study online

Nurses who earn the Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS) at UMass Dartmouth will have completed the required coursework and clinical experiences for certification as Adult-Gereontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioners (AGPCNP) by the American Credentialing Center (ANCC). This program track consists of 24 total credit hours and 500 hours of faculty-supervised clinical hours. Eligible applicants have a masters degree or doctoral degree in nursing.

Sample plan of study with a total of 24 credits and 500 practicum hours. Grand total of 15 credits for licensed APRNs* and 24 credits for non-APRNs*. All classes are attended 100% remotely except for the one on-campus day each semester.

Fall Year 1

  • NUR 550 Pathophysiological Bases for Advanced Practice Nursing (3 cr) **

Spring Year 1

  • NUR 553 Pharmacology for Advanced Nursing Practice (3 cr) **

Fall Year 2

  • NUR 552 Advanced Health/Physical Assessment (3 cr) **

Spring Year 2

  • NUR 557 Introduction to Primary Care for the Advanced Practice Nurse (2 cr)
  • NUR 558 Introduction to Primary Care for the Advanced Practice Nurse-Practicum (3 cr)

Fall Year 3

  • NUR 656 Primary Care II for the Advanced Practice Nurse (2 cr)
  • NUR 657 Primary Care II for the Advanced Practice Nurse-Practicum (3 cr)

Spring Year 3

  • NUR 658 Chronic Illness Management (2 cr)
  • NUR 659 Chronic Illness Management- Practicum (3 cr)

Prerequisites: Masters or doctoral degree in nursing

* Course requirements may be fulfilled with transfer credit at the discretion of the DNP Admissions Committee.

** Not required for licensed advanced practice nurses (APRNs) based on transcript review.

UMassD advantages

Customize your education and receive the help and guidance to finish as planned:

  • Value and affordability of a UMass education
  • One-on-one personal advising from enrollment through graduation
  • Military friendly, with leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience
  • Limited class size ensures individualized interaction with professors

Applicants to the CAGS program must: 

  • have either a master’s or doctoral degree in nursing
  • provide evidence of the following graduate level coursework
    • advanced pathophysiology
    • advanced pharmacology
    • physical assessment across the lifespan
  • submit a 1-2 page statement of purpose
  • submit resume
  • submit official college transcripts
  • Copy of active unencumbered RN license
  • RN license must be from Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, your permanent (home) residence must be in listed states, and faculty-supervised clinical hours must occur in these states as well.
  • 2 letters of recommendation. Recommenders should document competence and leadership in professional nursing practice. One reference should be from a supervisor (professional nurse who holds a DNP preferred) and one from a nurse educator. An additional supervisor reference may be submitted in place of a nurse educator if needed. Applicants will be required to provide the recommenders name and email address so they can be contacted directly for the letter of recommendation. 

Pending a review of applicants’ prior coursework and with advising, these courses also may be taken as pre-requisites to the CAGS course plan.

University requirements for graduate admissions

  • Submit an application via the online portal. Be sure to provide your full legal name and to capitalize the first letter of all proper nouns.
  • Pay non-refundable $60 application fee (American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa) via the online portal. For Nursing applicants, the non-refundable application fee is $75.
  • Statement of Purpose, minimum 300 words. Unless otherwise indicated in the program requirement details, indicate your graduate study objectives, research interests and experience, and business or industry experience if applicable. If you are applying for a teaching or research assistantship, include any special skills or experience that would assist us in making assistantship decisions.
  • Resume
  • Transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended (regardless of whether a credential is earned or not). Unofficial transcripts are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled a final official transcript is required. International students applying with an transcript evaluation, please submit that document with your unofficial transcripts. International applicants for Data Science must submit semester-by-semester transcripts as well as consolidated transcripts. 
  • Many programs have specific recommendations/requirements, please see the additional program-specific requirements for more information.
  • International students: official TOEFL iBT, IELTS, Pearson PTE or Duolingo (if accepted by program) score. Unofficial scores are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled official scores are required and must be sent by the testing agency (copies/scans not accepted). This is required of any applicant who did not earn a bachelor’s degree or higher degree from an accredited academic institution in the U.S. or accepted English-speaking country, see exemptions for more details. We require an overall/total minimum score of 72 on the TOEFL iBT or BAND 6.0 on the IELTS or a 52 on the Pearsons PTE Academic for entrance to any program and a minimum score of 79 on the TOEFL iBT or BAND 6.5 on the IELTS for consideration for a teaching assistantship. Some programs require higher minimum scores (see program-specific requirements). Most programs also accept the Duolingo with a minimum score of 95. The following programs do not accept the Duolingo: Art Education, Biology/Marine Biology, Nursing (MS, DNP, PhD), Psychology: Clinical, and Public Policy. 
  • All official documents are required for enrollment, please have documents (ie. test scores) sent prior to the expiration. 

Program deadlines

Learning Style: Online

Online courses are taught by UMass Dartmouth faculty to provide high quality instruction and personal attention. Students have the flexibility to accommodate work and home responsibilities within the structure of defined assignment due dates. The majority of our online courses are taught asynchronously.

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