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Best Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Programs


Family nurse practitioners, or FNPs, are the most common types of nurse practitioners in the United States today. They provide many of the very same services as physicians within the scope of family medicine and treat sick or injured patients of all ages in both inpatient and outpatient settings. On average, you can expect to earn a salary of roughly $105,900 a year as an FNP, and you will also be able to look forward an incredibly positive job outlook for many years to come. Below, we have ranked the best online and on-campus family nurse practitioner programs in the country to help you narrow your search and get the education you need.

Degree Options Available to Become FNP


Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)


Program Cost: If you want to go to work as an MSN as quickly and affordably as possible, an MSN is your best choice. You can expect to pay tuition ranging from $9,550 to $90,010 to complete your program.

Program Length: If you already have your BSN, you can earn your MSN in about two years. Online FNP programs offer you far more flexibility and may allow you more time to complete them, which is important for working nurses.

Curriculum: The MSN curriculum contains a variety of general medical education, which ranges from ethics and law to advanced pharmacology and physiology. Courses will also include things like population health, epidemiology, statistics, and leadership in the role of advanced practice nurses. You will also be expected to put your classroom knowledge to the test by participating in unpaid clinicals. During this time, you will work under the supervision of a licensed FNP or physician to diagnose, treat, and otherwise manage patients in one of several medical settings.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Program Cost: Because a DNP-FNP program is more involved than an MSN and takes longer to complete, the cost is slightly more. You will pay $14,220 to $133,060 in total to complete the program.

Program Length: The average length of DNP programs for students who have already earned their BSN degrees is roughly three to four years. Students who choose online delivery may be able to fast-track their studies or take a bit longer to complete them.

Curriculum: DNP core courses focus on things like pharmacotherapeutics, pathophysiology, healthcare policy and its interpretation, and leadership within the healthcare industry. FNP specialty courses may focus on theoretical family healthcare, mental healthcare (including substance abuse or addiction), and care of young, mature, and complex families. You will also participate in unpaid clinicals where you will put your new knowledge to the test by providing care to patients of all ages under the supervision of a physician or licensed FNP.

Following are the 10 Best Family Nurse Practitioner Programs - 2020


1) University of Washington - Seattle, WA


Program Type

DNP Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

2) Duke University School of Nursing - Durham, NC


Program Type

MSN Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

3) Indiana State University - Terre Haute, IN


Program Type

MSN Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

Post-Master's Certificates: Family Nurse Practitioner

4) Rush University – Chicago, IL


Program Type

DNP Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

5) Columbia University – New York, NY


Program Type

Post-BSN to DNP Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

6) University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, MI


Program Type

MSN Programs: Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner & Nurse-midwifery and Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner

BSN to DNP Programs: Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner & Nurse-midwifery and Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner

Post-Master's Advanced Practice Certificates Programs: Primary Care Family Nurse Practitioner

7) University of Cincinnati – Cincinnati, OH


Program Type

MSN Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

Post-Master's Certificate Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

DNP Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

8) University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing – Philadelphia, PA


Program Type

MSN Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

9) Georgetown University – Washington, DC


Program Type

MSN Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

BSN to DNP Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

Post-Graduate Certificate Programs: Family Nurse Practitioner

10) University of Pittsburgh – Pittsburgh, PA


Program Type

BSN to DNP Programs: Family (Individual Across the Lifespan)

MSN to DNP Programs: Family (Individual Across the Lifespan)


FNP Board Certification


You will need to receive one of two nationally-recognized board certifications before you can work as an FNP in any of the 50 states. You may choose to earn the FNP-BC certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the FNP certification from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners National Certification Board (AANPCB). Each of these organizations requires you to take an examination after completing your MSN or DNP program to test your knowledge and ability. You can only receive your credentials after successfully passing the examination associated with the credential of your choice.

CertificationCertifying BodyLink
Family Nurse Practitioner Certification (FNP-BC)American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)https://www.nursingworld.org/our-certifications/family-nurse-practitioner/
Family Nurse Practitioner CertificationAmerican Academy of Nurse Practitioners National Certification Board (AANPCB)https://www.aanpcert.org/certs/fnp


What does FNP Do?


The various FNP duties are centered on providing healthcare within the medical specialty of family medicine. They work alongside and under the supervision of a family care physician, and most work in doctors’ offices, clinics, and other outpatient care centers. You may also choose to work independently in your own practice and serve as the primary healthcare provider for your patients. In this case, you would still be required to consult with physicians and other specialists, but you would have all the skills and abilities needed to care for your patients independently.

FNP Scope of Practice


Your scope of practice as an FNP is ultimately determined by local, state, and national regulations, but the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) is working hard to achieve legislative reform that would define the scope of practice at the national level for all states. For the most part, you will be able to provide many of the same services as a physician – diagnosing, treating, and prescribing medications to patients. In all states, FNPs have some ability to examine patients, perform in-office procedures, create and implement care plans, and order and evaluate diagnostic imaging and lab work.

Family Nurse Practitioner Salary


The average family nurse practitioner salary in the United States is $105,900 a year, but your exact salary depends on a variety of factors. For example, FNPs who work independently as primary care providers tend to earn more than FNPs who work in hospital-run clinics. More experienced family nurse practitioners earn a great deal more than their lesser experienced counterparts, and those who work in more populated cities and states tend to earn much higher salaries, as well. Finally, FNPs who have earned doctorate degrees tend to earn more than those who have master’s degrees.

TypeSalary
Hourly$50.91
Monthly$8,830
Annual$105,900


FNP Job Outlook


Between the years of 2016 and 2026, the nurse practitioner occupation is expected to grow some 31%. This growth far exceeds the average for all occupations nationally (7%) and even exceeds the projected growth for registered nurses across the country (15%). As the number of people seeking primary healthcare from skilled professionals continues to increase due to population growth and expanded access to affordable healthcare, more FNPs than ever before will be required to fill those roles – especially in outpatient clinics and hospitals. FNPs are increasingly providing home health services, too, which improves the health of people who may not otherwise be able to travel to their primary care providers’ offices as frequently as they should.




Best Nurse Practitioner Schools in Your State