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University of Pittsburgh    
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
  Jun 20, 2024
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate

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The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Post-Professional Certificate is designed for graduate prepared Nurse Practitioners (NP) or Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) who are seeking to expand their roles via nurse practitioner certification in Psychiatric Mental Health Care.

The curriculum includes foundational and psychiatric care content providing students with the advanced practice skills to effectively manage persons with psychiatric disorders across the lifespan. Emphasis is placed on psychobiologic diagnosis and treatment, including psychotherapies for these individuals and their families to promote mental health and prevent subsequent mental disorders.

Clinical experiences are designed so that students provide comprehensive management to psychiatric clients with mental illness in intensive and varied clinical experiences. Culminating clinical management practice provides students with the opportunity to synthesize and integrate concepts from primary health care with their psychiatric knowledge base.

Graduates are eligible for national certification offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and legal certification as a CRNP and prescriptive authority through the State Board of Nursing of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Curriculum Format
  • Full-time or part-time (length depends on prior academic preparation)
  • 640 clinical hours (length depends on prior academic preparation)
Program Outcomes

Graduates of the PMHNP are prepared to accomplish the following:

  • Provide comprehensive care to psychiatric clients
  • Conduct psychotherapies for psychiatric clients and their families
Admission Criteria
  • Valid registered nurse license (all students must obtain a Pennsylvania license)
  • Previous MS or MSN as a NP or CNS (from accredited program (ACEN, NLN, ACICS, or CCNE)
  • GPA ≥ 3.0 in the MS or MSN degree
  • Minimum of one year nursing experience recommended
  • Prerequisite statistics course (within 10 years) with a grade of B- or higher
  • Pre-admission interview
  • Complete online application
  • International applicants: see and
  • Rolling admissions

(Year 1)

Year 2

Total Credits: 34

  • *Courses with a ”D“ can be delivered synchronously via distance technology. Such courses are open only to qualified onsite students as per Policy 438.

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