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Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (MS), 2-Year

Nursing students listen intently as a D'Youville instructor lectures to her classroom.

Prepare for leadership in nursing at a respected source for high-quality, student-centered education — D’Youville.

Overview & Distinctions


A Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) is specialized in providing mental health services and care to individuals, families and groups. As a student in the program, you will learn the real-world skills needed to advance your nursing career as you become specifically prepared to deliver safe, competent and quality mental health services to persons of all ages.

As a student, you will benefit from a simple scheduling structure with all classes held on Thursdays and/or Fridays, and you will be able to complete the program in two years of full-time study.

As a graduate of the program, you will be prepared to take the exam for board certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) to further demonstrate your expertise in the mental health field.

If you’re interested in advancing your career as a PMHNP, D’Youville’s nursing program is an ideal place to learn. Established in 1942, the School of Nursing has earned a reputation as a leading resource in the region for high-quality, student-centered education.

What You'll Learn

As a student in D’Youville’s Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program, you will:

  • Learn to assess, diagnose and manage acute and chronic mental health conditions;
  • Gain experience and skills to promote mental health and educate patients about mental illness prevention and recovery;
  • Receive practical experience in primary care and behavioral health settings;
  • Benefit from the opportunity to work closely with experienced faculty mentors and others throughout the nursing community.


  • Our faculty are clinical experts in their fields and recognized for their student-centered approach that emphasizes individualized instruction and knowledgeable career guidance.
  • Research has shown that teamwork across clinical specialties improves patient outcomes and D'Youville has created an environment that promotes a team-learning approach. D'Youville's unique interdisciplinary education lab offers the opportunity to practice treating patients (played by actors) alongside a team of students from seven other health care majors at the college — all under the supervision of a skilled instructor.
  • The nursing program at D'Youville reflects the institution’s mission to educate professionals who contribute to the world community through leadership and service to others.
  • D'Youville's Doctor of Nursing Practice as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program provides an ideal option for students interested in furthering their education after completion of their master's degree.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

We recommend that applicants to D'Youville's psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (MS) hold at least one year of practice as a registered nurse.


  • Official transcripts from all college/universities attended
  • A baccalaureate degree in nursing from an accredited college or university program
  • Evidence of capability to succeed in a graduate program based on a overall undergraduate GPA of at least a 3.0 (based on a 4.0 system)
  • A current license to practice professional nursing in New York State or Ontario
  • Two letters of recommendation that include comment on the applicant's clinical performance (preferably from a supervisor and colleague)
  • A current certification in CPR
  • Letter of intent


Applicants to D'Youville's psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (MS) must complete the following undergraduate course prerequisites:

Undergraduate Courses
Health Assessment (or its equivalent)
Pathophysiology (or its equivalent)
Pharmacology (or its equivalent)

Canadian students must submit a 'course-by-course' evaluation (or equivalent) of all Canadian college and/or university transcripts through the World Education Services (WES).

Use the Online Course Equivalency database to see whether the courses you've taken at other institutions can be counted towards a degree at D'Youville.



Course requirements for the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (MS) include:

Clinical Component

Course # Course Name Credits
NUR 611 APN Role Transition/Policy 2
NUR 631 Advanced Health Assessment 3
NUR 631L Advanced Health Assessment Lab 1
NUR 706 Co-management of Medical Disorder for APNs 1
NUR 707 Foundations PMHNP-APN I 3
NUR 708 Foundations PMHNP-APN II 3
NUR 714 Clinical Practicum in Community-based Family Care 2
NUR 715 PHHNP Clinical Practicum I 3
NUR 716 PHHNP Clinical Practicum II 4


Course # Course Name Credits
NUR 600 Nursing Theory Development 3
NUR 601 Nursing Research Methods 3

Supportive Component

Course # Course Name Credits
NUR 632 Advanced Pharmacology 3
NUR 633 Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology 3
NUR 672 Advanced Psycho-Pharmacology 1
NUR 673 Advanced Psycho-Pathology 1

Project Component

Course # Course Name Credits
NUR 610 Project Seminar 3
NUR 629 Project Advisement 1

Total Credits Required for MS

Total Credits required for MS: 40



The D’Youville two-year Master of Science in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program prepares graduates to work in integrated primary care and behavioral health settings and to achieve certification through licensure examination.

A Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner's Role

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners are providers of holistic care and possess an understanding of all dimensions of patient care. They assess, diagnose and provide treatment using an in-depth understanding of mental health disorders. They treat patients of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds as they work with individuals, families and groups.

PMHNPs are employed in traditional outpatient and inpatient settings, though as holders of advanced degrees, they are often involved in research, consulting and private practice. 

Career Outlook

Demand for nurse practitioners is expected to grow 31 percent from 2014 to 2024 as access to health care increases, the population ages and the role is more widely recognized by the public as a source for primary health care. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics views the job opportunities for nurse practitioners as excellent and notes employers may offer flexible work schedules, childcare and educational benefits.

For more information about careers in nursing, visit: and

A nursing student participating in the Interdisciplinary Education Lab.


Nursing students at D'Youville learn to work as part of a collaborative healthcare team through Interprofessional Education Labs.

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Denise Dunford in a clinical skills lab


"Our faculty's clinical expertise is our greatest asset."

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