The Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) track prepares, a total of 47 credits, nurses with extensive clinical practice and role preparation for advanced practice in caring for patients across the lifespan. The FNP is the most versatile nurse practitioner role allowing graduates to care for patients, families and communities in a wide array of practice sites from community-based clinics to primary care offices and from retail clinics to urgent care centers.   

Our graduates are highly respected for their knowledge and expertise and are employed in primary care settings across the country. Graduates also have the option to continue in the Post-master's DNP program.


Complete your Core Courses Online or On Campus.

Villanova's seven core courses prepare students with the foundational knowledge required of all graduate students and are offered asynchronous, synchronous and hybrid. Clinical courses must be completed in-person and enable students to build on existing skills, broaden the knowledge base related to Family Primary Care and gain the knowledge and skills essential to independent or collaborative practice in primary care settings.

Clinical Placement

Villanova Nursing secures MSN student clinical placement in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. Students work with physicians and nurse practitioner preceptors, and are given access to a wide variety of clinical agencies and practice settings.


At completion of this track, graduates will be able to:

  • Integrate advanced knowledge and experience in delivering safe, effective quality care of patients across the lifespan in primary care.
  • Demonstrate competence in managing the health/ illness status of patients in primary care.
  • Ensure quality health care for clients in primary care.
  • Incorporate an understanding of family systems and dynamics in planning and providing primary health care for a wide range of patient populations.
  • Demonstrate leadership and competence in implementing the role of the primary care nurse practitioner.
  • Engage in counseling, communication, collaboration and teaching in a manner that reflects caring, advocacy, ethics and professional standards.
  • Conceptualize one's individual role as a primary care nurse practitioner and one's personal philosophy of primary care practice.

Core Courses: Complete in-person or online.

NUR 8964

Clinical Ethics:  Theory and Practice


NUR 8904

Nursing Research: The Practice Connection


NUR 8902

Development of Nursing Science


NUR 8906

Leadership Strategies in Nursing



Support Courses: Complete in-person or online.

NUR 8903

Advanced Pharmacology


NUR 8901

Advanced Pathophysiology


NUR 8910

Advanced Physical Assessment


NUR 8615

Issues Across the Life Span






Clinical Courses: Completed in-person within Pennsylvania, Delaware or New Jersey.

NUR 8609

Clinical Management in Family Care I


NUR 8610

Practicum in Family Care I * (120 hours)


NUR 8611

Clinical Management in Family Care II   


NUR 8612

Practicum in Family Care II (305 hours)


NUR 8613

Clinical Management in Family Care III


NUR 8614

Practicum in Family Care III (305 hours)


Mary Terhaar, PhD, RN, ANEF, FAAN
Professor & Associate Dean for the Graduate Nursing Programs

Jan Campbell, BA, MS
Assistant Director, Graduate Nursing Programs

MaryAnn Cantrell, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF, FAAN
Professor, Director, PhD Program

Debra Shearer, EdD, MSN, FNP-BC, PMHNP-BC
Director, Post-Master's Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Track

Jodie Szlachta, PhD, CRNA, FAANA
Nurse Anesthesia Program Director, Associate Clinical Professor


PhD Program Inquires & Post-Master's Doctor of Nursing Practice Inquires:
Sandi Schultz

Assistant Director, Doctoral Programs

DNP Nurse Anesthesia Inquires:
Recruitment and Enrollment Department

MSN Inquires (Nurse Practitioner Tracks & Nurse Education Tracks):
Recruitment and Enrollment Department


PhD and Post-Master’s DNP Transcripts:

DNP Nurse Anesthesia Transcripts

MSN Transcripts:


Villanova Graduate Nursing Program