NR 506 Week 3 Discussion:

NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse

Sample Answer for NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse Included After Question

NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse

NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse


The purpose of the graded collaborative discussions is to engage faculty and students in an interactive dialogue to assist the student in organizing, integrating, applying, and critically appraising knowledge regarding advanced nursing practice. Scholarly information obtained from credible sources as well as professional communication are required. Application of information to professional experiences promotes the analysis and use of principles, knowledge, and information learned and related to real-life professional situations. Meaningful dialogue among faculty and students fosters the development of a learning community as ideas, perspectives, and knowledge are shared.  

Activity Learning Outcomes 

Through this discussion, the student will demonstrate the ability to: 

  1. Examine roles and competencies of advanced practice nurses essential to performing as leaders and advocates of holistic, safe, and quality care (CO1)  
  1. Apply concepts of person-centered care to nursing practice situations (CO2)  
  1. Analyze essential skills needed to lead within the context of complex systems (CO3)  
  1. Explore the process of scholarship engagement to improve health and healthcare outcomes in various settings (CO4)  

Due Date 

A 10% late penalty will be imposed for discussions posted after the deadline on Wednesday, regardless of the number of days late. NOTHING will be accepted after 11:59pm MT on Sunday (i.e. student will receive an automatic 0 for any portion of the discussion not posted by that time). Week 8 discussion closes on Saturday at 11:59pm MT.  

 NOTE: To receive credit for a week’s discussion, students may begin posting no earlier than the Sunday immediately before each week opens. Unless otherwise specified, access to most weeks begins on Sunday at 12:01 a.m. MT, and that week’s assignments are due by the next Sunday by 11:59 p.m. MT. Week 8 opens at 12:01 a.m. MT Sunday and closes at 11:59 p.m. MT Saturday.  

A zero is the lowest score that a student can be assigned.  

Faculty may submit any collaborative discussion posting to Turnitin in order to verify originality.  

Total Points Possible:  75 

A Sample Answer For the Assignment: NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse

Title: NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master’s-Prepared Nurse


Discussion Criteria 

I.   Application of Course Knowledge: of Course Knowledge:  

The student post contributes unique perspectives or insights gleaned from personal experience or examples from the healthcare field. The student must accurately and fully discuss the topic for the week in addition to providing personal or professional examples. The student must completely answer the entire initial question.  

II.  Engagement in Meaningful Dialogue: I. The student responds to a student peer and course faculty to further dialogue. 

  1. Peer Response: The student responds substantively to at least one topic-related post by a student peer. A substantive post adds content or insights or asks a question that will add to the learning experience and/or generate discussion.  
  • A post of “I agree” with a repeat of the other student’s post does not count as a substantive post. A collection of shallow posts does not equal a substantive post. 
  • The peer response must occur on a separate day from the initial posting. 
  • The peer response must occur before Sunday, 11:59 p.m. MT. 
  • The peer response does not require a scholarly citation and reference unless the information is paraphrased and/or direct quotes are used, in which APA style standards then apply. 

Faculty Response: The student responds substantively to at least one question by course faculty. The faculty question may be directed to the student, to another student, or to the entire class. 

  • A post of “I agree” with a repeat of the faculty’s post does not count as a substantive post. A collection of shallow posts does not equal a substantive post. 
  • The faculty response must occur on a separate day from the initial posting. 
  • Responses to the faculty member must occur by Sunday, 11:59 p.m. MT. 
  • This response does not require a scholarly citation and reference unless the information is paraphrased and/or direct quotes are used, in which APA style standards then apply. 

III.  Integration of Evidence: The student post provides support from a minimum of one scholarly in-text citation with a matching reference AND assigned readings OR online lessons, per discussion topic per week. 

  1. What is a scholarly resource? A scholarly resource is one that comes from a professional, peer-reviewed publication (e.g., journals and government reports such as those from the FDA or CDC).

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  • Contains references for sources cited 
  • Written by a professional or scholar in the field and indicates credentials of the author(s) 
  • Is no more than 5 years old for clinical or research article 
  1. What is not considered a scholarly resource? 
  • Newspaper articles and layperson literature (e.g., Readers Digest, Healthy Life Magazine, Food, and Fitness) 
  • Information from Wikipedia or any wiki 
  • Textbooks 
  • Website homepages 
  • The weekly lesson 
  • Articles in healthcare and nursing-oriented trade magazines, such as Nursing Made Incredibly Easy and RNMagazine (Source: What is a scholarly article.docx; Created 06/09 CK/CL Revised: 02/17/11, 09/02/11 nlh/clm) 

Can the lesson for the week be used as a scholarly source? 

  • Information from the weekly lesson can be cited in a posting; however, it is not to be the sole source used in the post. 

Are resources provided from CU acceptable sources (e.g., the readings for the week)? 

  • Not as a sole source within the post. The textbook and/or assigned (required) articles for the week can be used, but another outside source must be cited for full credit. Textbooks are not considered scholarly sources for the purpose of discussions. 

Are websites acceptable as scholarly resources for discussions? 

  • Yes, if they are documents or data cited from credible websites. Credible websites usually end in .gov or .edu; however, some .org sites that belong to professional associations (e.g., American Heart Association, National League for Nursing, American Diabetes Association) are also considered credible websites. Websites ending with .com are not to be used as scholarly resources 

IV.  Professionalism in Communication: The post presents information in logical, meaningful, and understandable sequence, and is clearly relevant to the discussion topic. Grammar, spelling, and/or punctuation are accurate. 

V.  Wednesday Participation Requirement: The student provides a substantive response to the graded discussion question(s) or topic(s), posted by the course faculty (not a response to a peer), by Wednesday, 11:59 p.m. MT of each week. 

VI.  Total Participation Requirement: The student provides at least three substantive posts (one to the initial question or topic, one to a student peer, and one to a faculty question) on two different days during the week. 

Category  Points  %  Description 
Application of Course Knowledge  20  27  Answers the initial discussion question(s)/topic(s), demonstrating knowledge and understanding of the concepts for the week.  
Engagement in Meaningful Dialogue With Peers and Faculty  20  27  Responds to a student peer AND course faculty furthering the dialogue by providing more information and clarification, adding depth to the conversation  
Integration of Evidence  20  27  Assigned readings OR online lesson AND at least one outside scholarly source are included. The scholarly source is:  

1) evidence-based, 2) scholarly in nature, 3) published within the last 5 years  

  60  81%  Total CONTENT Points= 60 pts 
Category  Points  %  Description 
Grammar and Communication  8  10  Presents information using clear and concise language in an organized manner  
Reference Citation  7  9  References have complete information as required by APA    

In-text citations included for all references  AND references included for all in-text citation   

  15  19%  Total FORMAT Points= 15 pts 
      DISCUSSION TOTAL=75 points 


Preparing the Assignment 

This discussion will explore the value of a master’s education in nursing. Please provide an initial response to the discussion question by Wednesday at 11:59pm MT and two interactive dialogue responses no later than Sunday 11:59 PM MT at the end of WEEK 1. The discussion is worth 75 points. Please refer to the discussion grading rubric for additional criteria. 

Consider the current healthcare delivery models and practice settings. Reflect on how nursing practice is transforming in response to the current demands of the healthcare system and answer one of the following questions: 

  1. What differentiates the practice of a master’s-prepared nurse compared to that of a baccalaureate-prepared nurse? 
  1. What is the value of a master’s degree in nursing? 
  1. What do you consider to be the most essential professional competency for a master’s-prepared nurse practicing in the 21st century? 

Refer to AACN Essentials, Chamberlain University Nursing Conceptual Framework and other scholarly sources. Use at least one outside scholarly article to support your position. Provide an example to illustrate an application to professional practice. 


  1. When discussing differentiating factors of a master’s-prepared nurse compared to that of a baccalaureate-prepared nurse, the most obvious difference is the level of formal education. However, the most important difference between these two nurses are evident within their practice, which sets them apart in the clinical field. Master’s-prepared nurses often practice as a nurse practitioner, where they practice with a higher level of autonomy than those with a baccalaureate degree (Clark, et al., 2015, p. 328). Nurse practitioners are required to have at least a master’s degree to “assess and manage patients with undifferentiated and undiagnosed problems” in their routine practice (Clark, et al., 2015, p. 328).
  2. The master’s degree of nursing programs reflects mastery of higher level of critical thinking than at the baccalaureate level, as well as the understanding of complete, holistic care (AACN, 2011, p. 7). Therefore, master’s-degree nurses are shown to not only have more formal education, but also a more expansive clinical skill set, more critical thinking skills, and the legal capability to diagnose and treat patients as providers, compared to that of a baccalaureate-prepared nurse.  
  1. There is a significant amount of literature supporting the value of a master’s degree in nursing. A common theme amongst this literature discusses improved delivery of care and patient outcomes with increased involvement of master’s-prepared nurses in the health care system (Clark, et al., 2015, p. 333). The evidence also suggests that master’s-prepared nurses positively influence nursing practice due to the higher level of critical thinking, leadership expertise, and leadership skills from the master’s-prepared nurses (Clark, et al., 2015, p. 333). Every nurse’s goal is to improve patient outcomes and delivery of care in the healthcare system, and this evidence suggests that master’s-prepared nurses are top performers amongst their nurse colleagues in these categories.  
  1. According to a concept analysis study, nurse competencies can be categorized into three different theories including behaviorism, trait theory, and holism (Fukada, 2018). Behaviorism includes performance of individual core skills, trait theory considers the competencies required to complete specific tasks, such as critical thinking skills, and holism views competency as a cluster of elements (Fukada, 2018). I believe that holism is the most essential professional competency for a master’s-prepared nurse practicing in the twenty-first century.
  2. Furthermore, holism requires applying skills, attitudes, knowledge and critical thinking to unique situations (Fakuda, 2018). I believe that holism is the most essential competency because approaching patient situations with a holistic perspective is what makes nurses unique amongst other providers in the interdisciplinary team. Nurses are specially trained to look at the patient as a whole human, not just for his or her medical diagnoses.  



American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2011). The essentials of master’s education in nursing. to an external site. 

Clark, L., Casey, D., & Morris, S. (2015). The value of master’s degrees for registered nursesLinks to an external siteLinks to an external site.. British Journal of Nursing, 24(6), 328-334. to an external site. 

Fukada M. (2018). Nursing Competency: Definition, Structure and Development. Yonago acta medica, 61(1), 1–7. 


As you traverse through the process of earning a graduate degree, have you identified a nurse mentor? According to Jean, a nurse mentor is one that can help with reflection in practice (2021). They are also reliable, encouraging, and trustworthy (Jean, 2021). If you do not have a mentor, how would you identify a person to function in this role? 
Jean, J. (2021). The importance of mentorship in nursing. Nurse Journal. Retrieved 

I have identified a few different nurse mentors who practice beside me. Some of these mentors are nurse practitioners and others are experienced staff nurses. I rely on these nurses to encourage me as I trust them. This encouragement includes emotional support during difficult situations and teaching me something new when necessary. I do agree that nurse mentors are important in all aspects of practice, especially during reflection as a nurse practitioner student.  

I enjoyed reading your post. I agree that the level of formal education and the clinical field differentiate MSN nurses from BSN nurses. I have learned that MSN-prepared nurses have a higher level of autonomy in practice than BSN nurses, which can be attributed to the differences in the scope of practice. Indeed, the increased involvement of MSN-prepared nurses has led to improved delivery of care and patient outcomes (Padilha et al., 2020). Thus, it is crucial to train more MSN nurses, and this evidence should encourage healthcare organizations to increase the employment of MSN nurses due to their specialized knowledge and skills to improve healthcare delivery. 

Master’s in nursing programs prepares graduates to optimize safe, quality care delivery to diverse populations in various healthcare settings and roles. The MSN nurse practicing in any setting or role must demonstrate insight into the foundations of care and the art and science of nursing practice in relation to individuals, families, and clinical populations (Shatto et al., 2019). 

I have learned that the MSN degree prepares nurses to carry out comprehensive and systematic assessments, which act as the basis for decision-making. MSN nurses are valuable to clinical practice since they are trained to apply the best available evidence from nursing and other sciences as the basis for practice. In addition, MSN-nurse uses their advocacy skills to advocate for patients, families, caregivers, communities, and other healthcare professionals (Padilha et al., 2020). The MSN nurse is equipped with informatics skills and thus uses information and communication technologies to improve patient education and accessibility of care, analyze practice patterns and enhance healthcare outcomes.  


Padilha, M. I., Maliska, I. A., Costa, R., Benedet, S. A., Gelbcke, F. L., & Anders, J. C. (2020). Professional master program: Preparing the nurse of the future. Revista Brasileira de Enfermagem, 73(suppl 5), e20200007. Shatto, B., L’Ecuyer, K., Meyer, G., Shagavah, A., & Mooney, E. (2019). Experiences of master’s prepared clinical nurse leaders at three years post-graduation. Journal of Professional Nursing, 35(1), 51–56. 

You used a lot of good points in your discussion post. I enjoyed reading it. I think regardless of the differences caused by these two levels of education, nurses with either qualification can collaborate in any case to achieve better patient outcomes. The diversity of knowledge in nursing practice makes it essential for nurses to learn from each other and collaborate in decision-making. The increased push for advanced learning for nurses in many states summarizes the value of a master’s degree in modern nursing practice. 

      What is the value of master’s degree in nursing? The perception of the value of a master’s degree in nursing is specific to the individual and is very multi-faceted.  To many, the greatest value of acquiring your master’s degree is encompassed by the difference in autonomy and the individual’s ability to manage their patients care.  In 22 states in the United States nurse practitioners are able to oversee care, asses, order, and prescribe without being under the supervision of a physician of a physician (Owens, 2018).  Nurse Practitioners can use the knowledge that they gained earlier in their nursing career as undergraduate members of a healthcare team to develop comprehensive plans of care for patients.  This knowledge can be used in conjunction with the in-depth understanding of pathophysiology, assessment, and pharmacology that comes with the education provided with the advanced degree. NR 500NP Week 1: The Value of a Master's-Prepared Nurse

      Another way an individual may find value in a master’s degree in nursing is by the increasing access to medical care to underserved communities.  Without the nurse practitioners that serve rural communities to help, the shortage of primary care physicians would leave many people without access to routine medical care.  The rural county I was raised in has one primary care physician and 2 family nurse practitioners and another clinic that’s ran bye only nurse practitioner and they have 4 nurse practitioners total that serve the community. 

Without the master’s trained family nurse practitioners within the area, almost two-thirds of people would have to drive over 45 minutes to the closet city to seek the guidance and treatment of a primary care provider.  Nurse practitioners can oversee chronic and acute medical conditions, prescribe routine medications, complete and review routine labs, provide preventative care, and wellness checks in a timely and affordable manner making them critical for public health in rural areas (2018). 


Owens, R.A. (2018). Transition Experiences of New Rural Nurse Practitioners, Journal for Nurse Practitioners, 14(8), 605-612,,nurpra.2018.05.009 

You bring up great points. We will explore the scope of the ANP for your state in the coming weeks a bit more. You provided a thorough discussion related to the value of a master’s degree. According to the AACN, of the 3.8 nurses in the workforce, only 17.1% has a master’s degree (2019).  

Class, does your organization promote professional development of nurses in obtaining a master’s degree? If not, how could you impact organizational change in this initiative? 

AACN. (2019). Creating a more highly qualified nursing workforce. Retrieved 

My organization promotes the professional development of nursing by offering tuition re-reimbursement and tuition assistance. I am proud to be part of an organization that values its nurses. Avera has received Magnet Certification five times from the ANCC. 

To adapt to the rapidly evolving healthcare system and nursing practice contexts in the United States, Atlantic Health system puts much effort into ensuring quality care is delivered in New Jersey. That’s why they, as a company, support obtaining baccalaureate and master’s degrees for nurses. Atlantic Health offers internship and mentorship programs for undergraduate and graduate students that often lead to full-time positions. Atlantic Health also has tuition reimbursement and access to multiple scholarships. They are also in partnership with Chamberlain University, which gives their employees 15% off credit hour for undergraduate and graduate programs. 

My organization, like Andrea, offers tuition reimbursement for nurse’s going back to school. Of course, there are stipulations and you must work there for 2 years after graduating. Other than this, I do not feel my current organization is resource for advancement. It is a smaller hospital with very little opportunities. At this time, my plan is to research and apply to a different organization after obtaining my MSN. I work with a great group of people, however, it is very difficult to promote change in a facility that lacks resources. Maybe I will change my mind by the time I graduate and decide to see what I can do to help improve my organization, but at this time, I am leaning toward a larger, reputable organization that I can grow with.  

You bring up a good point about a work commitment following tuition reimbursement.  I need to review the policy to make sure I understand what type of stipulations come with any financial assistance from my employer.  Thank you for the thoughtful comment. 

I look forward to working with you this semester. 

Unfortunately, my organization does not promote professional development of nurses in obtaining any degrees, whether baccalaureate or master’s degree. With this knowledge I have gained right now, I hope to pass it to the governing body in my organization. Whenever the opportunity permits, I hope to educate them on the need for professional development. I want to be an advocate for change. 

If organization knows that “Research has shown that lower mortality rates, fewer medication errors, and positive outcomes are all linked to nurses prepared at the baccalaureate and graduate degree levels”, why won’t they consider professional development? This is what we need in any healthcare, better patient outcome. 

AACN. (2019). Creating a more highly qualified nursing