Alverno College DEMSN Program

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  • 18-month program
  • Milwaukee, WI
  • Three starts per year

Why Choose Alverno College’s DEMSN Program?

The Direct Entry MSN program in the Alverno College JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions offers you an accelerated path into the nursing profession in fewer than two years of study.

Based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Alverno’s DEMSN offers you:

  • An Abilities-Based Curriculum

    A curriculum that measures what you can do as well as what you know.

  • Center for Clinical Education (CCE)

    Alverno’s CCE features high-fidelity clinical practice environments that simulate settings from home care to trauma centers.

  • A College Known for Innovation

    Alverno College was recently ranked the most innovative school in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.

  • Mentorship from Faculty Experts

    As an Alverno DEMSN student, you’ll receive personal attention and mentorship from faculty with advanced clinical experience and expertise — mentorship that can help you define your professional identity as a nurse.

Program Structure

The DEMSN at Alverno College is an 18-month accelerated program in which you take both BSN- and MSN-level courses. It includes:

  • Core Curriculum

    Covering courses in health science foundations, patient care, nursing research, policy and leadership.

  • Clinical Training

    Develop hands-on skills in Alverno’s CCE under the guidance and mentorship of faculty members.

  • Clinical Practicum Experience

    Complete clinical rotations with one of Alverno’s 25 regional health care partners and complete an MSN capstone.


  • Orientation to MSN Program
  • Physiological Mechanisms of Disease
  • Professional Nursing Practice Essentials
  • Health Assessment and Clinical Skills
  • Pharmacology: Nursing Connections
  • Ethics for Nurses
  • Theories of Holistic Nursing Management A
  • Theories of Holistic Nursing Management B
  • Clinical Nursing Practice I
  • Nursing Inquiry: Evidence-Based Practice and Quality Improvement
  • Theories of Holistic Nursing Management C
  • Nursing Management: Women and Children
  • Nursing Management of Aging Adults
  • Nursing Leadership and Policy, Health Care Systems
  • Nursing of Complex Clients
  • Nursing in Complex Communities
  • Clinical Nursing Practice II
  • Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology
  • Nursing Research and Scholarship
  • Population-Based Health
  • Advanced Health and Physical Assessment
  • Advanced Nursing Theory I
  • Clinical Nursing Practice III


  • Capstone I
  • Roles, Interprofessional Teams, Theories
  • Advanced Pharmacotherapeutics
  • Advanced Nursing Theory II
  • Nursing Clinical Practice IV
  • Capstone II

Admission Requirements

Application Requirements

To apply to the Alverno College DEMSN, you must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university in any academic major other than nursing. Contact Alverno College to learn more about its additional admissions requirements.

Prerequisite Courses

You must have all prerequisite courses completed before starting your DEMSN, although you may apply while you are still completing prerequisites.

Alverno requires completion of the following courses with a grade of C or better within seven years of starting the DEMSN (except where noted):

  • Human Anatomy and Physiology (with a lab component)
  • Microbiology (with a lab component)
  • Chemistry or Biochemistry
  • Developmental Psychology
  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Inferential Statistics (Must be completed within five years of starting the program)

For students who have not completed prerequisites, Alverno offers affordable online courses you can complete in as few as eight weeks. Financial aid for these courses is available for students who qualify.


The Direct Entry Master of Science in Nursing program at Alverno College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions at Alverno College is approved by the Wisconsin Board of Nursing.

Alverno College DEMSN Program FAQ

How long is Alverno College’s DEMSN program?

Alverno College’s DEMSN program takes as few as 18 months to complete.

How much does Alverno College’s DEMSN program cost?

As of 2021, tuition for Alverno College’s DEMSN is $676 per credit hour. The tuition cost for the 77-credit program is $52,052.

Additional fees may apply, and you will also need to purchase books and materials. Financial aid is available to those who qualify. Tuition costs are subject to change.

Is a DEMSN at Alverno College worth it?

Yes. Earning your DEMSN with Alverno College means you have the opportunity to study at a trusted nursing school, as well as the most innovative college in the Midwest region, according to U.S. News & World Report (2021). Find out more about what an MSN can offer you.

How much can you make with an MSN degree from Alverno College?

At the beginning of your career as a nurse, you can expect to earn a salary in line with that of registered nurses. In Wisconsin, nursing salaries were as follows in May 2019*:

  • Median annual salary: $71,560
  • Lowest 10%: $55,020 or less
  • Highest 10%: $95,570 or more[1]

Salaries vary by employer and by region. As a nurse with an MSN, it is possible you may be able to enter the profession with a higher starting salary than the median indicated here.

*The most recent year for which data is available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).