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Post Master's AGACNP
Adult Gerontology Acute Care NP Certificate

Transition to a rewarding new career path in advanced practice nursing

You can discover new heights in your nursing career by specializing in critical and emergency care as an Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP).

Switching to acute care offers current Family Nurse Practitioners (FNP) and other types of advanced practice nurses an opportunity to transition from a standard 5-day schedule into a more flexible, dynamic job delivering critical care to the adult population. This is not your typical 9 to 5.

Our AGACNP post master’s certificate program is designed for current nurses who have already earned a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and seek a fast-paced NP role in an intensive care environment:

  • Learn online in Herzing’s Everywhere Classroom: on your schedule, at your pace
  • Engage in interdisciplinary clinical rotations preparing you for the variety of challenges you’ll face as an acute care NP
  • Prepare for certification exams from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) Certification Corporation

Working as an AGACNP is not for everybody, but you aren’t everybody. Put on a superhero cape you’ve always wanted to wear. You can—because you are possible!

Classes Start January 10th

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Curriculum

Post Master’s AGACNP certificate classes & curriculum details

Our curriculum is built for nurses who already have earned an MSN degree and seek the skills and knowledge to succeed as an adult gerontology acute care nurse practitioner. Courses include pathophysiology and pharmacology, clinical decision-making, health promotion, roles of nurse practitioners, advanced practice specialty procedures and skills for acute care, and more.

All didactic (lecture) classes are delivered online with 585 required clinical hours.

ProgramMonthsiCredits
Post Master's Certificate Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (PMCAGACNP)2033

i. Average number of months for students to complete program. Program availability varies by location.

MSN Placement Pledge Badge

Your clinical placement is our pledge.

We understand securing clinical placement as part of the post master's AGACNP program is one of the biggest concerns students face. At Herzing, we offer guidance and support through our step-by-step Clinical Guidance Process to ensure you can get the clinical practice experiences you need.

As a Herzing student, we’ll encourage you to find your own preceptor and clinical sites as there are many benefits to doing so. However, we provide extensive support should you find difficulty along the way. With Herzing, you are never on your own.

Because of our strong relationships with healthcare providers across the U.S. and our comprehensive Clinical Guidance Process, we are confident in our ability to help you find clinical placement. So much so that if you are unable to find a clinical site on your own, we pledge to step in and help you secure clinical placement.*

* Subject to terms and conditions outlined in the enrollment agreement.

Tuition & Cost

20 months | 33 credits

$690 per credit

You are worth it.

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Tuition & Cost

Our goal is your career advancement. That’s why we are always working to improve our curriculums and processes to make our post master's AGACNP program as affordable as possible while preparing you best for success in your work.

With Herzing University, you are never alone, and we offer many options to help you invest in yourself and earn your master’s degree in nursing. Financial aid options include:

Requirements

Post Master’s AGACNP program enrollment requirements

Enrollment in the post master’s certificate nursing program is open to registered nurses who:

  • Hold a Master of Science in Nursing degree from an accredited university or college
  • Hold a current, active and unrestricted license as a registered nurse in the state in which they live (Note: Holding a multi-state, compact state license and being a resident in a compact license state will be deemed to have met this requirement).
FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

The scope of practice for AGACNPs can vary by state, but there are several core competencies relevant to all employed AGACNPs.

According to the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN), key aspects of the acute care NP role include:

  • Gathering patient histories
  • Performing physical examinations and screenings
  • Diagnosing and managing patients with acute, critical or complex illnesses/injuries
  • Prescribing medications and advanced therapeutic intervention
  • Ordering, performing and interpreting diagnostic studies
  • Providing health promotion, education and counseling
  • Collaborating with other medical professionals as a team

You can find a full description of the ACNP scope of practice in the “AACN Scope and Standards for Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Practice 2017,” available through the AACN website.

Acute care and primary care are very different disciplines. As an acute care NP, you’ll be working in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Emergency Room (ER), urgent care or other outpatient environment, which demands a very different set of skills and knowledge than a primary care NP in clinics or other inpatient facilities.

Providing preventive care and taking a long-term approach to patient health is another discipline requiring unique training and certification.

The Herzing Post Master’s Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner program is designed for MSN holders, including current AGACNPs, who are interested in pursuing a future job as a primary care AGNP.

There are two primary differences between a Family Nurse Practitioner and an Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner:

  1. Types of patients. FNPs work with patients across the patient lifespan, including children under the age of 13. As adult gerontology NPs, AGACNPs care for only adults ages 13 and above.
  2. Types of care. FNPs typically work in clinics, doctor’s offices, and other outpatient settings—and are not formally trained in acute and emergency care. Acute care NPs work in ICUs, hospitals and other inpatient settings to care for patients with trauma and more severe health issues.

If you have more interest in developing long-term relationships with patients, concerned more with preventative health, and love to work with children, FNP may be the best nurse practitioner career path for you.

You can prepare to make the transition from FNP to acute care NP by enrolling a post master’s, or postgraduate, certificate program designed for nurses who have already earned a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN).

Complete the post master’s program, earn certification, and you’ll be ready to apply for your first position as an Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP).

Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioners provide care to adults and older adults with complex conditions in acute care and hospital settings. AGACNPs work with patients who are acutely ill, exhibit chronic medical conditions, or highly vulnerable to complications.

Job responsibilities include providing complex monitoring, stabilizing patients, ordering and interpreting diagnostic tests, and developing complex treatment plans.

According to 2020 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nurse practitioners earn an average salary of $114,510 per year ($55.05 per hour). Pay depends on many factors, including your location, what healthcare institution you work for and your level of experience.*

Discover the average nurse practitioner salary by state and find out what nurse practitioners make on average near you.

A post master’s certificate (PMC), also referred to as a “post-graduate” certificate, is designed for nurses who hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and seek additional certification in a separate field.

Herzing University offers several post master’s certificates for MSN-prepared nurses looking to transition in or out of clinical-based practice:

  • AGACNP - Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (program length: 20 months)
  • AGPCNP - Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (program length: 20 months)
  • FNP - Family Nurse Practitioner certificate (program length: 16-20 months)
  • NE - Nursing Education certificate (program length: 8 months)
  • NLA - Nursing Leadership & Administration (program length: 8 months)
  • PMHNP: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner certificate (program length: 20 months)

A post master’s certificate from Herzing University provides the education, training, and practical experience you need to take the next big step in your nursing career.

While there are some similarities between the two main types of adult gerontology nurse practitioners, these are the biggest differences between primary care NPs and acute care NPs:

Sometimes hospitals form partnerships with schools like ours to provide employees with unique benefits should they choose to pursue an advanced nursing degree.

Employees of Herzing partners can potentially earn college credit for prior work or military experience, transfer existing credit, or earn a scholarship to make going back to school more affordable.

If you are currently an RN considering becoming a nurse practitioner, view our educational partnerships or check with your employer for potential possibilities.

Locations

Program Finder

Post Master's Certificate - Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Degree Programs

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Accreditation

Accreditation & Disclosures

1. The master’s degree program in nursing and post-graduate APRN certificate program at Herzing University Madison are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org). Herzing University is approved to offer programs in an online learning modality through association with the main campus in Madison, Wisconsin. ​

Herzing University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org), an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

View Herzing University Accreditation and Approvals

* Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2020. BLS estimates do not represent entry-level wages and/or salaries. Multiple factors, including prior experience, age, geography market in which you want to work and degree field, will affect career outcomes and earnings. Herzing neither represents that its graduates will earn the average salaries calculated by BLS for a particular job nor guarantees that graduation from its program will result in a job, promotion, salary increase or other career growth.

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