Women's Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate Program

Curriculum Change: We are no longer accepting applications for the Women's Health Nurse Practitioner Statutory Certificate program. Please see Women's Health subspecialty program page.

Program Description

The Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner post-master’s statutory certificate program is designed to allow master’s prepared registered nurses to add professional competencies which prepare them for additional areas of gainful employment. Women’s Health Nurse Practitioners provide primary care to women across the life span, from adolescence to the elderly.

The School’s scientific foundation of research, theory, and practice is integrated with a focus on the impact of health policy and social issues on health. Students develop a comprehensive understanding of women’s health needs by spending classroom and clinical time developing a solid knowledge base of women’s health problems, practices, and issues. Initial clinical experiences incorporate primary care in the ambulatory, gynecological, obstetrical, and family planning settings. Advanced clinicals offer students an intense experience in such specialized areas as breast disease, osteoporosis, oncology, and hypertension.

Graduates are prepared to practice health promotion, disease prevention, and treatment by:

  • Performing comprehensive, women-centered health histories and screenings that consider recognized health risks, as well as environmental risks such as physical and domestic violence, sexual assault, and substance abuse
  • Performing corresponding physical assessments
  • Individualizing educational programs
  • Developing and implementing a plan for the management of common women’s health concerns, such as normal pregnancy, family planning, or menopausal care
  • Planning and implementing the treatment of common, uncomplicated acute and chronic health problems of women

In addition to their traditional role in primary care, obstetric, gynecology, and family planning settings, women’s health nurse practitioners (WHNPs) work in specialized areas of women’s health care, bringing with them a specific focus on health promotion and prevention in the context of that setting. They apply the practices of women-centered primary care to complex patients in collaboration with an interdisciplinary team. By ensuring communication with the team and promoting share decision making with the patient, WHNPs reinforce the humanistic approach necessary to ensure positive health outcomes.

Graduates are eligible for certification as a nurse practitioner in all states in which certification is required. The program is certified for advanced practice/nurse practitioner status by the New York State Education Department.


Please contact the Office of Admissions for details regarding admission and financial aid packages. Faculty review applications on a rolling basis so that students may apply to begin this program in the summer or fall semester. Please note, applications for the Women's Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate Program can only be submitted online.

Admission criteria include:

  • Master's degree in nursing from an NLN or CCNE accredited program with official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions
  • Minimum of one year clinical experience
  • Personal interview with the program director
  • Current New York State nursing license or eligibility
  • Three references attesting to applicant's academic ability and potential
  • Personal goal statement that is congruent with program goals (two pages, double-spaced, 12 pt. font)
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae

Students must secure a site and preceptor for primary care student practice that is acceptable to the program director.


The minimum credits for the post master’s Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate Program is 26 credits and represents the basic post-master’s statutory certificate in this major.

Individual students may need additional course work, depending on previous study and experience. Students may receive advanced standing or exemption, based on standard School policy

A sample curriculum is provided below to make you aware of the academic requirements of the program. Please be advised that this is a sample curriculum plan, and individual plans of study are reviewed and approved upon acceptance to the program. Progression in the program is contingent upon meeting academic policies. The School of Nursing reserves the right to change the course offering schedule as stated in the student bulletin.

Course Number Course Name Credits
N6458 Pelvic Assessment of the Adult Woman 2
N6760 Primary Care of Women Across the Lifespan I 3
N6930 Interpersonal Violence and Abuse: Prevention, Assessment and Intervention for Health Care Professionals 1
N8460 Comprehensive Women's Health 3
N8462 Practicum in Comprehensive Women's Health 2
N8465 Primary Care of Women Across the Life Span II 3
N8466 Capstone Seminar 1
N8468 Advanced Practicum in Women's Health 4-6
N8482 Care of Childbearing Women: Antepartum and Postpartum Care 3
N8485 Practicum: Childbearing Woman 3
N8786 Advanced Clinical Assessment Across the Lifespan 3
N8789 Advanced Clinical Assessment: Women's Health 2
Total Credits 30 - 32

The above information is current as of 05/01/2009 and is subject to change.

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