5 Best Online MSN in Organizational Leadership Programs – 2023
Written By: Darby Faubion, RN, BSN, MBA
Are you a registered nurse who loves motivating others? Do you enjoy advocating for patients and your peers? Have you considered earning an MSN and working in a leadership role in nursing? If so, an MSN in organizational leadership program could help you gain the knowledge and skills you need to assume leadership roles and make a big impact in healthcare.
If you considered earning a master’s degree and specializing in leadership, you may wonder, “What are the best online MSN in organizational leadership programs?” In this article, I will share the 5 best online MSN in organizational leadership programs for 2023 and give some insight into why this degree and career path is something worth considering. With the information from this article, you can make an informed decision based on facts about whether earning a Master of Science in Nursing in organizational leadership is right for you.
WHAT EXACTLY IS THE GOAL OF AN ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAM?
The goal of the best MSN in organizational leadership online programs is to prepare registered nurses with the knowledge, skills, and values that are essential to professional nurse leadership and healthcare management. These programs teach students to manage, evaluate, improve, and promote successful healthcare delivery systems within the ever-evolving landscape of healthcare.
5 MOST IMPORTANT SKILLS AND ABILITIES YOU WILL GAIN IN AN ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAM
Nursing is an industry that is always changing and growing. No matter what degree you have in nursing, there is always something new to learn and new skills to develop. Online MSN in organizational leadership programs prepare students with the skills and abilities needed to become effective organizational leaders across a wide range of healthcare settings in various positions. The following are five of the most important skills and abilities you will gain as a student in one of these specialized programs.
1. You will learn to review, create, and implement operational and financial planning processes for healthcare settings:
Online MSN in organizational leadership programs will prepare you with the concepts and theories of economics and finance as they relate to healthcare. You will learn to apply financial analysis to problems within your organization associated with pricing, demand, cost, and organizational investments.
2. You will develop the ability to utilize critical and ethical decision-making to guide a systems approach to healthcare leadership:
Systems leadership is an essential part of bringing organizations together to work toward common goals. As a student in MSN organizational leadership programs, you will learn important decision-making skills that you will utilize to navigate healthcare systems and bring about innovative change.
3. You will learn proven ways of building and leading collaborative interprofessional healthcare teams to serve diverse populations:
Online MSN in organizational leadership programs will teach you to identify diversity and disparities among patient populations and help you develop methods of leading collaborative teams to care for clients. You will learn to conduct population assessments and how to propose healthcare models designed to facilitate access to quality care.
4. You will learn to implement the principles of human resource management as an organizational leader in healthcare:
In your program, you will learn to apply behavioral sciences to human resource management. You will learn to analyze practices for employee recruitment, retention, and satisfaction.
5. You will learn to communicate and collaborate with healthcare leaders to promote positive organizational change:
Some of the most important jobs of graduates of MSN in organizational leadership online programs are to promote a positive work environment and create an atmosphere conducive to effective change. In one of these specialized programs, you will learn ways to strategize and coordinate patient care in a manner that promotes positive patient and organizational outcomes.
4 MAIN ADVANTAGES OF ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS
What I love most about nursing is that there are so many advantages to working in this industry. Each degree, certification, job, and healthcare environment offers something new. Four of the main advantages of the best online MSN in organizational leadership programs include the following.
1. You will be prepared to work in a variety of settings:
One of the excellent things about earning an MSN in organizational leadership is that you have options when it comes to where you work. Some graduates work in hospitals, nursing homes, or other large healthcare facilities. Others open consulting businesses or work in academia, to name a few options.
2. You will earn the credentials that make effective advocating for your organization easier:
When you earn your degree through online MSN in organizational leadership programs, you will have the knowledge and skills needed to be an advocate for healthcare teams. You can leverage your credentials and clinical nursing experience to promote changes that improve patient, professional, and organizational outcomes.
3. You will enter a career that has an excellent long-term job outlook:
As long as there are healthcare facilities, we need qualified nurse leaders to manage and support them. One of the things I love about nursing is that there is always potential for growth and development, and the outlook for employment opportunities is great! Earning your degree through MSN in organizational leadership online programs sets you up for a career with endless possibilities.
4. You can positively impact healthcare delivery:
With an MSN in organizational leadership, you can use your clinical nursing experience and knowledge of leadership to promote best practices and safe patient environments. The decisions you make can have a far-reaching impact on patient care.
2 MAIN DISADVANTAGES OF ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS
No matter which career you pursue, you will experience some downsides or disadvantages. What is important is weighing the advantages and disadvantages to determine if the pros are greater than the cons. The following are two main disadvantages of online MSN in organizational leadership programs.
1. Being a leader in healthcare can be quite stressful:
Although there are perks to working in organizational leadership, the weight of the responsibilities you bear can leave you feeling stressed or overwhelmed. If I could give you any advice about this, I would remind you that good leaders understand it takes teamwork to make things run smoothly. Learn as much as possible from faculty and preceptors in your program, and be intentional about building strong teams of people you can work well with
2. You must deal with people... ALL THE TIME!:
Another disadvantage of online MSN in organizational leadership programs is they cannot help you predict how others will act. There will be days when you feel like things run so smoothly that it amazes you. Then, you will have days when it seems like everyone you encounter has different goals and objectives, which can make your job as a leader challenging.
WHEN DO MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS START?
Finding the right MSN in organizational leadership online programs means choosing one that aligns with the timeframe you have in mind for earning your degree. Each school sets the start dates for its program based on available faculty and interested candidates. Some schools begin their programs once yearly, usually in the spring or fall semester, and others offer multiple start dates each year. Additionally, some schools accept applications on a continuous or rolling basis and begin classes when they have enough students to fill each cohort. The following are the start dates for the nation’s top five programs.
At Johns Hopkins University
, students begin the program in the fall semester
• Post University
offers monthly start dates
, which makes it easy for you to begin your program at a time when it is convenient for you.
The MSN in organizational leadership program at City University of New York
admits students in the spring semester
of each academic year.
• National University
has a rolling admission policy, which means applications are reviewed year-round. Classes start every four weeks
, which makes it possible to start earning your degree on your own time.
The University of Kentucky Medical Center
offers start dates in the spring and fall semesters
HOW MANY CREDITS ARE THERE IN MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS?
Online MSN in organizational leadership programs typically require students to complete between 35 and 45 credits. Some programs allow you to transfer credits from your previous nursing degree, which could reduce the credits you need to accomplish to earn the degree. If you hope to transfer credits, it is essential that you provide official transcripts to admissions as soon as possible to determine whether it is possible. The following list reflects the credit requirements for the five programs featured in this article.
At Johns Hopkins University
, students in the MSN in Organizational Leadership online program complete 35 credits
Students at Post University
complete 36 credit hours
The program offered at CUNY
features a 45-credit curriculum
At National University
, students complete a total of 36 credits
to earn the MSN in organizational leadership degree. The university may accept up to 12 credit hours of graduate course credits in transfer toward the MSN.
The online MSN in Organizational Leadership program at the University of Kansas Medical Center
is a 37-credit pathway
HOW LONG ARE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS?
On average, MSN in organizational leadership online programs take two years to complete. However, a few factors determine the time it will take you to graduate. If you transfer previously earned credits to the program, you could reduce the time it takes to complete the program. Also, if you enroll part-time instead of full-time, you could extend the time you are in the program.
• Johns Hopkins University
offers part-time and full-time program plans
for its MSN in Organizational Leadership degree program. Part-time students take three to seven credits each semester and complete the program in seven semesters. Full-time students take seven to eleven credits per semester and graduate in four semesters.
At Post University
, you have the option of pursuing your MSN in organizational leadership through the term-based modality or competency-based modality
. The term-based modality takes 24 months to complete, and the competency-based modality takes 16 months to complete.
The MSN in Organizational Leadership online program at CUNY
takes an average of two years
to complete. However, you may take up to five years to complete the program.
At National University
, the estimated time to complete the program is 26 months
. However, the university allows up to five years to complete the program.
Students at KU Medical Center
complete the MSN in Organizational Leadership online program in an average of 24 months
HOW MUCH DO MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS COST?
As you search for online MSN in organizational leadership programs, one key factor to consider is the program’s cost and how you will pay for it. The top programs cost from $20,000 to $65,000 for tuition. Additionally, you must consider the cost of books, fees, travel to clinical sites, and other expenses. There are several options for federal student loans
as well as private scholarships, grants
, and loan opportunities that could help with the expense of earning your degree.
Tuition at Johns Hopkins University
costs $1,881 per credit. Therefore, tuition for the program costs approximately $65,835
. With other expenses, such as books, housing, loan fees, and health service fees, the total for the program averages $111,259.
• Post University
charges graduate nursing students $560 per credit hour, making tuition for the online MSN in organizational leadership program cost $20,160
At City University of New York
, graduate tuition is $470 per credit. The program requires 45 credits, which means tuition averages $21,150
The MSN in Organizational Leadership program at National University
costs approximately $21,330
Tuition at the University of Kansas Medical Center
costs $542.20 per credit for all online students, regardless of residency. In addition to the per-credit tuition rate, online students pay a $100 e-learning fee, which is assessed per credit hour. Therefore, the cost of the program averages $23,761.40
WHAT IS THE MINIMUM GPA REQUIRED TO GET INTO ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS?
MSN in organizational leadership online programs typically require candidates to have a minimum 3.0 grade point average to be considered for admission. As you research program options, pay close attention to the wording for the GPA criteria. Some schools consider your cumulative college grade point average, and others evaluate your most recent nursing credits. If you find a school that interests you but fear your GPA is not high enough, I encourage you to apply anyway. Some programs offer conditional admission to students who demonstrate a likelihood of success despite previous academic shortcomings. Be sure to schedule an appointment with an academic advisor or program director as early as possible to determine your eligibility and next steps.
WHAT ARE THE ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS FOR ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS?
In addition to meeting the grade point average criteria for admission, online MSN in organizational leadership programs have other requirements candidates must meet. If you take the time to verify admission policies with each school and gather supplemental documents beforehand, you can ease the stress of the admission process. The following are the admission requirements for the top MSN in organizational leadership online programs.
• Prospective students
desiring admission to Johns Hopkins University’s
MSN in Organizational Leadership online program must meet the following criteria. Candidates must have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree or an entry-level Master of Science in Nursing from an ACEN- or CCNE- accredited college or university with a scholastic GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale and have an unrestricted, current license to practice as a registered nurse. Applicants must provide a current resume, goal statement, three letters of recommendation, and official transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities. Candidates who meet these admission criteria and are chosen to move forward in the application process will participate in an interview with faculty.
At Post University
must have a BSN with a minimum nursing grade point average of 3.0. All candidates must submit an application to the school of nursing, a copy of an active, unencumbered RN license, and a copy of a driver’s license or state-issued identification. Additionally, applicants must provide official post-secondary transcripts, one to two letters of recommendation, a resume, curriculum vitae, or list of professional accomplishments, and a personal statement.
• Admission requirements
for the online MSN in organizational leadership program at City University of New York
include the following. Candidates must possess a BSN from a regionally accredited nursing school, have a cumulative college GPA of 3.0 or higher, and hold a current RN license. Additionally, you must provide two letters of recommendation, an admissions essay, a professional resume, and a scholarly writing sample.
To be eligible for admission
to the program at National University
, you must have a BSN or higher nursing degree earned from a regionally accredited agency or an agency accredited by the CHEA (Council for Higher Education Accreditation). Candidates must have and maintain an active, unrestricted RN license in their state of residence. You must provide official transcripts reflecting a minimum 3.0 college GPA and two letters of recommendation and participate in an admissions interview.
for the online MSN in leadership program at the University of Kansas
must have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing earned from a nationally accredited nursing program and a current RN license. Although it is not required, applicants with at least one year of clinical experience as a registered nurse are preferred. Applicants must complete a graduate-level statistics course with a grade of “B” or higher and must have a minimum scholastic undergraduate GPA of 3.0.
WHAT KIND OF COURSES WILL YOU TAKE IN ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS?
When you pursue your degree through MSN in organizational leadership online programs, you will study a variety of subjects and course content, including healthcare finance, quality assurance and safety, organizational psychology, and human resources management. The names of classes may vary from one program to another, but the course content is usually similar, especially if you choose an accredited program. Below are examples of some of the courses you will take if you enroll in one of this article’s featured programs.
The MSN in Organizational Leadership online program at Johns Hopkins University
features a rich curriculum
. Here, you will take classes, including Healthcare Economics for Management & Practice, Foundations of Healthcare Quality & Safety, Context of Healthcare for Advanced Nursing Practice, Healthcare Finance, and Leadership: Organizational Dynamics, Complexities, and Change.
At Post University
, you will study in classes
such as Clinical & Administrative Systems, Human Resources Management, Leadership in Healthcare Organizations, Healthcare Strategic Management and Planning, and Healthcare Finance & Economics.
The program at CUNY
, including Transformational Nursing Leadership in Community, Regulatory, & Healthcare Organizations, Leading & Managing Healthcare Disparities & Underserved Populations, Policy & Ethics in Nursing, Healthcare Finance & Management, and Statistics for Advanced Nursing Practice.
At National University
, students in the MSN in organizational leadership program take classes
, including Human Resource Management, Leadership in Healthcare Organizations, Health Informatics, Healthcare Finance & Economics, and Healthcare Strategic Management & Planning.
The online MSN in organizational leadership program at KU Medical Center
, including Human Resources & Workforce Development, Applied Budgeting & Finance, Complexity Science Approaches to Improve Organizational Effectiveness, Healthcare Economics, and Evaluation & Analysis for Healthcare Effectiveness.
WHAT KIND OF PRACTICAL TRAINING WILL YOU UNDERGO IN ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS?
Online MSN in organizational leadership programs include a practical training component to complement didactic instruction. Most programs feature a clinical practicum that involves preceptor-supervised experiences in organizational leadership. Some programs also require students to complete an MSN Capstone project.
At Johns Hopkins University
, students complete 504 clinical hours
. Clinicals begin in the second semester and continue with one clinical practicum completed each semester thereafter.
Students pursuing the MSN in organizational leadership degree at Post University
complete a minimum of 355 clinical hours
. Clinical hours are earned through practice experience activities and a culminating MSN Capstone project.
The curriculum for the program offered at City University of New York
includes 135 practicum hours
. You will complete your practical training in a community-based healthcare organization or regulatory healthcare agency setting. The practicum offers a deep focus on human resource management and systems and organizational theories.
The program at National University
includes a minimum of 140 hours of clinical training
to be eligible for graduation. You must be employed or have access to an applicable healthcare organization where you can complete the practice experience for your MSN Capstone Course. The university offers guidance in securing practical training contracts and approving preceptors.
At KU Medical Center
, students complete the Organizational Leadership Practicum
in the last semester of the program. The practicum allows you to integrate the knowledge, abilities, and skills you learned throughout the program into practice. You will work with faculty and preceptors to design an MSN Capstone Project.
WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS IN THE NATION?
(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 5 Best Online MSN in Organizational Leadership Programs in the nation for the year 2023.)
VIEW OUR RANKING METHODOLOGY
3 BEST JOBS FOR GRADUATES OF ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAMS
Graduates of MSN in organizational leadership online programs can choose from a wide range of job options. The following are some of the best jobs for program graduates.
1. Chief Nursing Officer:
The Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) holds one of the highest leadership positions available in healthcare facilities. As a CNO, you will oversee nursing departments and patient care services, promoting quality care. This job may involve being a spokesperson for your organization, directing nurses in clinical roles, and ensuring compliance with healthcare regulations and quality nursing standards.
2. Clinical Nurse Leader:
Clinical Nurse Leaders provide leadership and patient care in clinical settings, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and long-term care facilities. The responsibilities of this job include coordinating patient care, measuring organizational outcomes, performing risk assessments, educating staff, and handling transitions of care. Clinical Nurse Leaders collaborate with other healthcare leaders to promote positive organizational outcomes.
3. Director of Nursing:
The D.O.N. supervises the nursing personnel within a healthcare facility and is responsible for the quality of care patients receive. This job involves overseeing nursing programs, updating, and implementing departmental policies, hiring, and training new personnel, collaborating with patients, families, and staff, and managing departmental budgets.
WHAT STARTING SALARY CAN NEW GRADUATES OF THIS PROGRAM EXPECT?
The starting salary for graduates of online MSN in organizational leadership programs is $34.36 per hour, $1,374 per week, or $5,960 per month. This pay is equivalent to $71,470 per year.
WHAT AVERAGE SALARY CAN GRADUATES OF MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS EXPECT?
The average annual salary for graduates of MSN in organizational leadership online programs is $102,020. According to Indeed, this wage is equal to $49.05 per hour, $1,962 per week, or $8,500 per month.
10-YEAR JOB OUTLOOK FOR GRADUATES OF MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP ONLINE PROGRAMS
If you are looking for a nursing degree with good long-term job prospects, earning your degree through online MSN in organizational leadership programs is an excellent option. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects graduates of these programs will see an increase in jobs of at least 45.68% between 2021 and 2031.
|(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)|
BONUS! IS THE COST OF AN ONLINE MSN IN ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAM WORTH THE RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)?
An important factor to consider when choosing a college path is whether the money you spend to earn your degree is worth your potential income. One of the awesome things about nursing is that there is always potential for earning a good income. Online MSN in organizational leadership programs cost as little as $20,000 to more than $65,000, depending on which program you choose. Graduates of the programs earn an average of $102,020 annually. Additionally, it is good to note that the average income is not an income limit. Some program graduates earn much higher wages and often receive generous benefits packages. When you consider these factors, the cost of MSN in organizational leadership online programs is worth the return on investment.
MY FINAL THOUGHTS
If you are considering earning a Master of Science in Nursing and pursuing a career in organizational leadership, asking, “What are the best online MSN in organizational leadership programs?” is the first step. The 5 best online MSN in organizational leadership programs for 2023 featured in this article offer excellent learning and practical training experiences to prepare you for a career in healthcare leadership. With good income potential, an excellent job outlook, and a wide range of job options, there is no time like the present to begin your journey and earn your degree!
Darby Faubion, RN, BSN, MBA
Darby Faubion is a nurse and Allied Health educator with over twenty years of experience. She has assisted in developing curriculum for nursing programs and has instructed students at both community college and university levels. Because of her love of nursing education, Darby became a test-taking strategist and NCLEX prep coach and assists nursing graduates across the United States who are preparing to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).