Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Programs

Have you been thinking about becoming a psychiatric nurse practitioner? If so, you may be in for an exciting career in the future. This may not be the most popular sector of nursing in the world, but it is certainly something that is still in demand. In order to become a psychiatric NP, you will need to complete a master’s level degree program to get the training you need for your job. The information below highlights the work involved with psychiatric nurse practitioner programs so you can be prepared to go through with one for your career. Read on to see what may be in store for you.

Common Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Programs

There are many programs you can go through on your way to becoming a psychiatric NP, and any one of them should give you all the information you need to start your career. You may find different names for the programs in different schools, but the training within them should remain the same. Common names for this degree include:

  • Master of Science in Nursing, Nurse Practitioner specialty
  • Master of Science in Nursing, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner specialty
  • Master of Science in Nursing, Psychiatric Nursing specialty
  • Master of Science in Nursing, Psychiatry specialty
  • Doctorate in Nursing

Courses in Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Programs

Every psychiatric nurse practitioner program is a little different when it comes to the courses involved with it. Some programs are more comprehensive than others, but they all aim to teach the same materials in the end. Here are just some of the many classes you may come across in your degree:

  • Advanced Health Assessment
  • Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology
  • Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics
  • Conceptual Foundations in Family Therapy
  • Development and Psychopathology
  • Differential Diagnosis of Mental Disorders
  • Neurophysiology of Mental Disorders
  • Organizational and Professional Dimensions of Advanced Nursing Practice
  • Psychopharmacology
  • Psychopharmacology for Child and Adolescent
  • Science and Research for Advanced Nursing Practice
  • Systems and Populations in Health Care
  • Therapeutic Interventions across the Lifespan in Mental Health Nursing

Life after a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Degree Program

Once you complete your degree program, you will need to get a certification to verify your abilities as a psychiatric nurse practitioner. There are many of these to choose from, so try to research the ones necessary in your state. Possibilities may include:


  • Advanced Practice Registered Nurse-Board Certified:
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
  • Pediatrics
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support
  • Critical Care
  • Family Practice

With your degree and certification in place, all you have to do is find an employer in need of your services. This should not be an issue because there is a big demand for this field at this time. Here is a look at the money you may be making if you enter this profession:

Salary by Experience

  • Less than 1 year of experience: $62,462 – $96,523 per year
  • 1-4 years of experience: $60,267 – $103,939 per year
  • 5-9 years of experience: $59,350 – $117,923 per year
  • 10-19 years of experience: $64,564 – $120,171 per year
  • 20 years of experience or more: $67,602 – $109,055 per year

Think about your plans for the future and see if psychiatric nurse practitioner programs fall in line with them. If so, you could start looking for a program to enroll in today.