MSN: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

The MSN: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program prepares registered nurses as advanced practice leaders and interprofessional team members providing care for critically ill patients and their families. Acute Care NPs attend to adolescents and adults in a variety of clinical settings, including urgent care centers, critical care units, and inpatient medical-surgical or specialty units. Acute care is a high-intensity environment that requires fast-paced critical thinking skills, which you will develop throughout this program.



  • Assess complex acute, critical, and chronically ill patients using physical examination findings, interviewing techniques, diagnostic tests, and technology to determine their current status of physiologic stability and risk for life-threatening conditions.
  • Utilize critical thinking and diagnostic reasoning to identify and prioritize patient problems and diagnoses.
  • Formulate and implement an individualized plan of care for each patient taking into consideration best practices, guidelines, research findings, patient and family preferences, and cultural considerations.
  • Function as an integral member of inter-professional health care teams.
  • Evaluate the quality of care provided to individual patients and larger groups within varying health care settings (individual practices, urgent care centers, hospitals, health care systems).

Who Should Apply

If you’re already working as a nurse and are interested in advancing your education to provide care in high-intensity emergency environments such as urgent care centers, critical care and inpatient medical-surgical or specialty units, you should consider our MSN: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care NP program.

Application Deadlines

Fall 2024

Application Open: 10/03/23

Priority: 12/01/23  

Release Date: 01/04/24

Final: 07/01/24
Release Date: 06/05/24



The MSN: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program consists of 48 credit hours and 600 clinical hours. Questions about program requirements should be directed to the program director, Linda Briggs.

Program of Study


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

On-Campus Requirements

A virtual orientation is held prior to the start of the program so students can connect with classmates and faculty.

Students should be able to commute to Washington, D.C., for these on-campus experiences:

  • CLASI – Health Assessment Test Outs and seminars (3 days)
  • AGACNP II (3 Sessions)
  • Ventilators, Airway Management, Central Line Insertion (1 day)
  • Rapid Response, Shock – Critical Thinking in Crisis (1 day)
  • Suturing and Chest Tube Insertion (1 day)
  • Comprehensive Critical Care Management (2 days)

Technology Requirements

Beginning fall 2018, each student admitted to the MSN 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:

  • Bachelor'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
  • Active and unencumbered nursing licensure


  1. GW Nursing is subject to state authorization requirements in order to offer an approved nursing curriculum. View available states.

  2. The Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner requires students to be residents of the District of Columbia, Maryland, or Virginia.

Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner options require at least one year experience in critical care setting.

At the conclusion of this MSN program, you will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate leadership based upon advanced knowledge.

  2. Promote and improve quality in the workplace through quality improvement practices.

  3. Synthesize knowledge of nursing practice, theory and research as a foundation for advanced nursing practice.

  4. Demonstrate continued professional development through ongoing education.

  5. Build an interdisciplinary professional network that includes collaboration and teamwork.

  6. Promote positive changes in health care delivery and nursing practice.

  7. Engage in caring and collaborative relationships with patients/clients for shared decision-making.

You must record a minimum of 650 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.

The following clinical courses are required

  • AGACNP I (120 clinical hours) – Hospital General Internal Medicine, Intermediate Care Units
  • AGACNP II (240 clinical hours) – Critical Care Settings (ICU, ED)
  • AGACNP III (240 clinical hours) – Critical Care, Long-term Care (Rehab, Hospice, Geriatric ED)

The summer elective NURS 8413 (350 to 400 hours) is optional.

Required Documentation

  • Current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certificate
  • Current advanced cardiovascular life support (ACLS) certificate
  • Immunization records including vaccination or immunity to hepatitis B; measles, mumps and rubella (MMR); varicella; diphtheria; polio and tetanus
  • Documentation of negative test results for tuberculosis (purified protein derivative (PPD) and/or chest x-ray)

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


Frequently Asked Questions