Certificate: Family Nurse Practitioner


The Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate allows masters-prepared nurses to expand their scope of practice across the lifespan. This program option features an array of didactic and clinical experiences that focus on the primary care needs of patients, families and communities.

Who Should Apply

If you’re already working as a nurse, have a master’s degree in nursing and are interested in advancing your education to provide care for children and adults of all ages, you should consider our Certificate: Family Nurse Practitioner program.



Summer 2022 Applications
Priority: 12/13/2021
Final: 02/11/2021
Fall 2022 Applications
Priority: 12/01/2021
Final: 05/01/2022



The Certificate: Family Nurse Practitioner program consists of 17 credit hours and 500 clinical hours. Questions about program requirements should be directed to the program director.

Program of Study


For full listing of courses and descriptions, please visit the University Bulletin.

On-Campus Requirements

Students in the Family Nurse Practitioner certificate program are required to attend two on-campus simulation-based learning events.

Fall Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs)

Near the end of the fall semester, students visit campus for an opportunity to work with faculty through a series of OSCEs in the CLASS Center.  Through the use of standardized patients (SPs) in faculty constructed case scenarios, students are afforded a safe learning environment to demonstrate critical thinking and diagnostic reasoning.  Student progression toward nurse practitioner competency is again evaluated.  A number of hands-on skills workshops are held.

Program Test Outs

All nurse practitioner students are required to complete an end of program skills assessment. During this final on-campus simulation-based learning event, students have an opportunity to showcase

Technology Requirements

Beginning fall 2018, each student admitted to the Certificate program is expected to own and have ready access to a laptop or tablet with basic productivity software for classroom use. View Policy.

Complete applications that are submitted by the priority deadline will be reviewed first. Applications do not have to be verified by the priority deadline, only completed and submitted. Questions? Contact the Office of Admissions at [email protected]

A completed application includes the following components:

  • Master’s degree in nursing from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Preferred scholastic GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Official transcripts (from all post-secondary schools)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Current resume
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Evidence of current nursing licensure
  • Those eligible for admission to the Post Graduate FNP Certificate Program include:

    • Women’s Health Nurse Practitioners, Pediatric Nurse Practitioners
    • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioners
    • Acute Care Nurse Practitioners
  • The GRE is not required for this program


  1. GW Nursing is subject to state authorization requirements in order to offer an approved nursing curriculum. View available states.
  2. This is a graduate certificate requiring 17 credits for completion and is not eligible for Federal funding.

Advanced Pharmacology, Advanced Pathophysiology and Advanced Health Assessment are prerequisites for this program.

These must be three separate courses, across the lifespan, and designed for advanced practice clinicians.

You must record a minimum of 500 hours of clinical experience with an approved preceptor. You are encouraged to find your own preceptor, but we can provide information on local clinical sites if needed.  A clinical site visit will be conducted, usually during your second or final clinical course, by a faculty member.

Questions about clinical placement requirements should be directed to [email protected].

3 Great Reasons to Choose GW Nursing

Online Learning
These specialties are delivered in a hybrid format with online courses and some on-campus experiences for testing and training.
Flexible Format
Some specialties require you to complete a set number of clinical hours to complete the curriculum.
Exceptional Faculty
Our faculty members are nationally recognized leaders in nursing who actively engage and inspire students to improve global health care for all.

Frequently Asked Questions

On-campus requirements vary by program and specialty. Students enrolled in our Bachelor of Science in Nursing program spend the duration of the program on our Virginia Science and Technology Campus (VSTC) in Ashburn, Virginia.

Most graduate programs are delivered in a distance format with online courses and some on-campus experiences for testing and training, which typically take place in our state-of-the-art simulation facilities at VSTC. For example, nurse practitioner students are required to come to campus for Campus Learning and Skills Intensive (CLASI) when enrolled in NURS 6222 and for Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) during their second clinical course. For specific on-campus requirements for graduate programs, please visit the webpage for your respective specialty area of interest.

All nurse practitioner students are also required to complete an end of program skills assessment. During this final on-campus simulation-based learning event, students have an opportunity to showcase their assessment, diagnostic reasoning, and patient management skills.

Students enrolled in our Accelerated or Veteran Bachelor of Science in Nursing program may only attend the program on a full-time basis due to its accelerated format.

Students enrolled in our RN to BSN or RN to MSN programs may only enroll on a part-time basis.

Students enrolled in a graduate program have the ability to enroll in most tracks on a part-time basis. To review your program of study options, visit the MSN, DNP or certificate webpage in the specialty area of your choice. PhD applicants should contact the program director directly.

Our clinical placement model provides students with faculty and staff support to ensure clinical sites align with clinical course objectives and nurse practitioner (NP) competencies. Our approach includes a clinical placement team dedicated to processing legal documentation required to clear students for clinical placement. Although we offer as much support as possible to students who are unable to locate a preceptor, our process is driven by student submission of a request for placement. We are dedicated to ensuring adequate and robust clinical experiences, however, GW Nursing is not required to locate clinical sites and preceptors for our NP students. 

Students wishing to apply for a student visa in the United States will need to seek sponsorship from George Washington University. At this time, the only program available to students seeking an F-1 or J-1 visa is our Bachelor of Science in Nursing program taught in person in Ashburn, Virginia. For further questions about eligibility, please contact [email protected].