How to Choose the Right MSN Nursing School

Deciding to pursue a Master’s in Nursing (MSN) is a big decision and there are many great programs out there today. While many MSN nursing school programs have similar focuses around the overall quality of patient care, each program is unique in its own way, which can be overwhelming when deciding which program to choose.

So what types of things should aspiring grad students look for in an MSN nursing school? Here are a few important characteristics to consider:


We live in an age where flexibility is key. Technology has sped our worlds up in so many ways and, in order to keep up, it is important for us to be cognizant of spending our time efficiently. When looking for the right MSN nursing school, consider one that has convenient scheduling options if that’s important to you. Goodwin College, for example, allows students the flexibility to earn their degree while still working and tending to all of life’s other demands. Goodwin College offers part-time and full-time course formats, and students can complete their MSN degree fully online. This makes it convenient for students to get a graduate-level education without putting their lives on hold. Flexibility is a central quality for busy MSN students with other obligations. As Gladys Prouty, a Goodwin RN and MSN student, says, “The opportunity to study online, helps with the many responsibilities I have as a mother and as a nurse.”


Upon completion of an MSN program, you should feel fully prepared to not only take on more patient care responsibilities than you had prior to your degree, but also to take on more leadership responsibilities. That is why it is important to choose an MSN nursing school that has a robust and challenging curriculum, so that you are prepared to handle whatever new duties come your way with an advanced nursing position. When choosing a nursing school, consider a graduate nursing curriculum that covers everything from nursing leadership best practices to healthcare policies and politics, to nursing research and outcome improvements.

Program Requirements:

Before applying to any MSN nursing school, it’s important that you check their specific program requirements. Schools typically list out their specific program and application requirements right on their website. Goodwin’s MSN college, for example, requires students entering the MSN program to have already obtained a bachelor’s degree and to be a fully licensed RN. That said, Goodwin does not require GRE scores for admission. If you meet the program requirements, you would then fill out an application, submit a transcript, provide a resume and an unencumbered RN license, and write a personal statement listing your nursing career goals.

Financial Aid:

It’s no secret that higher education can be expensive. However, not every MSN nursing school program has to break the bank. When considering an MSN program, you’ll want to look at not only the overall tuition costs, but also the financial aid, scholarship and grant opportunities that could be available to you. Typically, there is a team of financial advisors that will work with you to identify the best financial package that will work with your life. Furthermore, some colleges, like Goodwin, offer reduced tuition to MSN students who have obtained their associate or BSN degree at the undergraduate nursing school.

Career Support:

The end goal of any nursing degree program is to gear yourself up with the resources, knowledge, and skills needed to put yourself in a better position to advance your nursing career. When considering a specific program, also consider the career support that would be available to you upon completion of your degree. Choose an MSN nursing school that offers individualized, lifetime career support. Goodwin’s career services team, for example, can assist with everything from resume and cover letter writing, mock interviews, job search assistance, to employer networking – all free of cost, forever to MSN graduates. So, when evaluating different MSN nursing school programs, look for this great value add.

Still have questions about what to consider before finalizing your choice for an MSN degree? Goodwin’s MSN nursing school advisors are available to answer any and all of your questions. Call 800-889-3282 or visit us online for more information!