4 Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in West Virginia – 2024

Written By: Editorial Staff @ NursingProcess.org

West Virginians, particularly those who live in the largely rural central and southern portions of the state, are affected by a severe shortage of primary healthcare providers; nurse practitioners are seen by policy makers as a solution to that shortfall. For that reason, utilization of NPs throughout the state is expected to increase by more than 74 percent over the next 10 years. Once they’ve completed a three-year period working under the supervision of a physician, NPs in The Mountain State are eligible to work independently. Graduates of accredited nurse practitioner schools in West Virginia earn more than $106,790 annually. Which schools offer the best nurse practitioner programs in West Virginia for 2024? Keep reading and find out.


(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 4 Best NP programs in West Virginia for the year 2024.)

1) West Virginia University - Morgantown

Programs Offered: MSN and Post-MSN Certificate

If you are shortlisting some of the best nurse practitioner programs in West Virginia that also boast of a 100% placement rate, then you may want to learn about West Virginia University. Not only do all of its NP graduates find suitable placements soon after graduation, but they also positively influence the health of West Virginians by striving towards health equity. The college’s research to improve healthcare delivery among the rural Appalachians has brought it quite a few research awards and generous grants. As an NP graduate here, you will be prepared to take up leadership roles in healthcare to promote health improvement and reduce disparities.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

To practice as a certified nurse practitioner in West Virginia, you can consider completing this MSN, specializing in either family health or pediatrics. Classes are offered as part-time and full-time options, with most of the coursework delivered online. Also, the college offers considerable flexibility, allowing you to individualize your plan of study to suit your goals, especially if you are working full-time. Graduation requires completion of 46 credits, after which you will be eligible to take the national certification exam within your chosen population focus.

The common core courses which you must complete regardless of the specialization track, include theory & disciplined reasoning, pharmacology, pathophysiology, evidence-based practice, healthcare informatics, leadership, health policy & ethics, advanced health assessment, and interprofessional collaboration.

Post-MSN Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, and Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Are you an MSN graduate keen on specializing in either family health, pediatrics, or adult-gerontology acute care? If yes, then this Post-MSN certificate program could be right for you. Before you apply for any of the tracks you must complete pre-requisite courses in advanced pathophysiology, pharmacotherapeutics, and assessment. Upon enrollment, an individualized plan will be designed based on a gap analysis. However, a minimum of 16 credits must be completed regardless of the track.

2) Shepherd University - Shepherdstown

Programs Offered: BSN-DNP

Shepherd University offers nursing education strongly grounded in liberal arts, providing students with diverse learning experiences. Small-sized classes and personalized mentorship create a close-knit environment, helping you develop meaningful bonds with faculty and peers. Being just 90 minutes away from Washington D.C, NP students can engage in varied clinical experiences that often translate into promising employment opportunities post-graduation. The college offers its DNP program intending to improve health outcomes for vulnerable populations. Here, through a web-based coursework that is delivered in a combination of online and on-campus classes, you will learn to design, implement, and evaluate health policies to reform healthcare.

BSN-DNP Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

As a BSN prepared registered nurse you can become a nurse practitioner by enrolling in this BSN to DNP pathway which prepares you for the advanced primary care of individuals across the lifespan. Unlike some of the other nurse practitioner schools in West Virginia that offer research-based doctoral programs, this DNP is mainly practice-based. MSN prepared nurses keen on earning a doctoral degree can also apply, however, the exact program requirements will depend on their past educational background.

As such, the BSN to DNP path requires completing 81 credits and at least 1000 hours of clinical practice. Most students complete this track within three years on a full-time basis. You will be educated in health care delivery systems, theoretical foundations, diagnostic reasoning, genetics, and advanced health assessment across the lifespan. Additionally, you will be trained in the primary care of individuals and families, ranging from infants to the elderly. Also, during your final third year, you will complete courses in health systems, population health, healthcare management, and research & evidence-based practice. You end the program with a DNP project and practicum.

3) West Virginia Wesleyan College - Buckhannon

Programs Offered: MSN

Whether your goal is to advance your nursing career or simply make a difference in primary care, with West Virginia Wesleyan College’s MSN program you can achieve both these goals. NP education here is focused on providing evidence-based, culture-sensitive care to a diverse patient population of all ages. The college is known for offering aspiring nurse practitioners the best value on the investment they make and then what better than the US News & World Report acknowledging this fact and ranking the college among the 20 Best Value Schools in the south region. Furthermore, if you thrive in a close-knit intimate environment, the small student to faculty ratio of 13:1 facilitate effective learning, making you skilled in critical thinking, communication, and advanced practice nursing.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

This NP program in West Virginia prepares you to autonomously offer patient care in various types of primary care settings. The coursework is offered through a hybrid format with most classes taken online and only a few on-campus visits for intensives. Also, clinical rotations can be completed conveniently within your community. To qualify for this program, you must have completed your BSN with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and possess an unencumbered RN license.

4) Wheeling Jesuit University - Wheeling

Programs Offered: MSN and Post-Master’s Certificate

If you are searching for affordable nurse practitioner programs in West Virginia that are rooted in Catholic traditions, then Wheeling Jesuit University can be a befitting choice. NP students who come from all walks of life and faiths are trained to work as compassionate agents of change. Here, in addition to a spirit of lifelong learning, values of leadership and service are firmly instilled among nursing students. To become an advanced practice nurse, you can enroll in either the MSN or post-master’s certificate, depending on your previous nursing degree.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

Online nurse practitioner programs in West Virginia make it feasible for working nurses in the state to pursue higher education without keeping their job on hold. This MSN is one such program that offers the entire coursework online and requires only one on-campus presentation. To be eligible for this program you must be a BSN graduate with an active RN license in WV. As such the required GPA is a minimum of 3.0, which if you fail to meet then you may require to produce a GRE score. The MSN is a 36-credit curriculum that requires completion of courses in advanced pathophysiology, health assessment, pharmacology, and advanced primary care of patients of all ages.

Post-Master’s Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

By completing this post-master’s certificate, you can add specialized knowledge to your master's in nursing. With a complete online coursework and clinical rotations completed in your community, you can easily acquire the FNP certification while juggling other life responsibilities. Depending on the previously completed coursework, you must earn credits anywhere from 12 to 26 to graduate. Your coursework mainly focuses on advanced practice nursing in primary care ranging from infancy to the aging adult.



What are the Total Number of Accredited NP Programs in West Virginia?

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners reports that currently there are Twelve accredited nurse practitioner programs in West Virginia.

Program Type #
Post-Master's Certificate4

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