Advanced Practice Nursing

Nursing and midwifery

Course details

Advanced practice nursing is a defined career pathway for registered nurses, committed to continuing professional development and clinical supervision, to practice at a higher level of capability as independent autonomous and expert practitioners (NMBI, 2017). The Advanced Practice Nursing (MSc) curriculum offered at RCSI is innovative, flexible and practice-orientated, leading to participants’ registration as advanced nurse practitioners.

This programme prepares suitably qualified nurses to practice both autonomously and collaboratively in advanced nursing practice. On successful completion of the programme, the student will qualify with an MSc in Advanced Practice Nursing (Level 9 NFQ, Major award) and be eligible for registration as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ANP) with the Nursing & Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI). This programme is delivered part-time over two years.

Course code: C3281M1

Learning outcomes

At the end of the MSc in Advanced Practice Nursing, successful students will be able to: 

  • Articulate a vision for advanced practice nursing that is developed through research, critical thinking and experiential learning.
  • Implement practice changes using negotiation and consensus-building, in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team and persons receiving care, across a variety of contexts utilising advanced research, ethics, political, clinical leadership and quality improvement skills.
  • Demonstrate mastery in conducting comprehensive holistic health assessment using evidenced based frameworks to determine diagnoses to inform autonomous advanced nursing care.
  • Synthesise and interpret assessment information at an advanced level within the practice area identified, or identified scope of practice.
  • Demonstrate advanced nursing practice skills and knowledge within the domains of the Advanced Practice Nursing Model in attainment of advanced competencies.
  • Practice in an often unpredictable variety of ill-defined contexts.
  • Articulate safe boundaries and engage in timely referral and collaboration for those areas outside their scope of practice, experience and competence.
  • Take significant responsibility for teaching others through clinical supervision and mentorship, and utilization of advanced practice knowledge and clinical competencies.
  • Demonstrate advanced clinical leadership and professional accountability in clinical decision-making and in collaborative risk assessments, through the promotion of a safe practice environment.
  • Demonstrate a range of standard and specialised research, or equivalent tools and techniques of enquiry, to further advance nursing practice.

Successful ANP students will demonstrate a breadth of knowledge and understanding of the theory, concepts and methods pertaining to the modules they complete, and will be able to critically discuss the incorporation of that knowledge in their area of practice. The programme learning outcomes are developed in compliance with the NMBI guidelines (Advanced Practice, Nursing Standards and Requirements and the Post-registration Nursing and Midwifery Programmes Standards and Requirements), the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) Level 9 structure and the Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI).


Year 1

  • Advanced Research Methods
  • Advanced Leadership (Professional and Clinical)
  • Advanced Practice Clinical Practicum I
  • Advanced Professional Accountability, Clinical Governance and Decision Making
  • Advanced Systematic Assessment and Case Management
  • Optional Specialist Module (x 1)

Year 2

  • Generating Evidence for Practice
  • Advanced Practice Clinical Practicum II