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Athabasca University

Master of Nursing: Generalist (GEN)
Program Regulations

Regulations effective September 1, 2020 to August 31, 2021.

If you were admitted to the MN:GEN program prior to September 2017, use the Cohort 1 regulations.

For MN:GEN student applications admitted after September 1, 2017, the most recent regulations below will apply.

Program Students

Program students are enrolled in any of the degrees, diplomas, or certificates offered by Athabasca University. Students who change from non-program to a program category may use credits earned while in the unclassified category provided the course(s) meet the program requirements, including any restrictions on the age of a course, if applicable.

Program Residency Requirements

In keeping with Athabasca University’s mandate of open access, residency requirements for the MN:GEN program are satisfied when the student has successfully completed 18 credits in MHST/NURS graduate courses through Athabasca University. The remaining credits may be transferred from other institutions, provided they are applicable to the student’s program.

MN Program Requirements

The MN:GEN program is composed of a total of 33 credits: 11 courses in the course-based route, or 8 courses in the thesis-based route.

Post-Baccalaureate Nurse Practitioners seeking admission to the MN:GEN Program

Registered Nurses with a Baccalaureate in Nursing or equivalent, a Canadian Nurse Practitioner (NP) license and an approved Post-Baccalaureate Nurse Practitioner Certificate will be admitted to the Master of Nursing: Generalist Stream and will complete the following courses:

NURS 608 Philosophical and Critical Foundations in Nursing (3)
NURS 603 Facilitating Inquiry (3)
NURS 611 Dissemination Strategies (taken in final semester) (3)
NURS 614 Foundations of Advanced Practice Nursing (3)
  Two curriculum courses 6 credits
Students will receive 15 credits for the Post-Baccalaureate Nurse Practitioner Certificate.

MN:GEN Routes

Students may choose from a course-based or thesis-based route.

  • Course-based route: Students complete four core courses, five curriculum courses and two elective courses. Students may elect to complete a focus area.
  • Thesis-based route: Students complete two core courses, two curriculum courses, one elective, and three thesis-related courses. Students may elect to complete a focus area.

Program Completion Timelines

Students must complete the MN:GEN program requirements within seven years of their initial admission to the program.

Program Status

To maintain program status, course-based students must successfully complete six credits of course work during each academic year (September 1 to August 31). Students who do not meet the requirements for maintaining program status will be withdrawn from the program. If a student is unable and not expected to make progress in the program, the student may request a deferral in order to suspend the program requirements for a period of time by submitting a Deferral Request form. The maximum length of one deferral is one (1) year. In special circumstances, students may reapply for a second year of deferral during their time in their program.

Thesis-based students must also successfully complete six credits of course work during each academic year (September 1 to August 31) to maintain program status. Students who do not meet the requirements for maintaining program status will be withdrawn from the program.

Program Withdrawal

Students may withdraw from their program by submitting a Program Withdrawal form. Students who withdraw may re-apply to the program by following the regular application procedures. Students re-applying to a graduate program will be competing against all other applicants and will not receive special consideration.

Two failures in one or more courses will result in the automatic removal of the student from the program with no option for re-admission to CNHS graduate programs.

Use of MN Credentials

The MN program does not have candidacy exams, therefore the use of MN (C) during your program is not permitted. When you have completed your program of study, applied to graduate, and your degree has been conferred, you may use the relevant credentials: MN. You may use this credential only after the degree is conferred.

Graduation Requirements

To be awarded the MN degree, a student must:

  1. successfully complete the program requirements. Students must achieve an overall average of B- (70 per cent) to graduate. The minimum passing grade requirement for all graduate MHST courses is C- (60 per cent), with the exception of those graded on a pass/fail basis.
  2. complete and submit an Application for Graduation Form to the Office of the Registrar, and
  3. meet all other regulations and requirements. In addition, students must have paid all necessary fees owed to the University and have returned all library resources.


Information effective Sept. 1, 2020 to Aug. 31, 2021.

Updated April 14 2022 by laurab

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