Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health (CNP)

Post-Graduate Certificate in Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner 
Unit: School of Nursing
Program Website
Academic Plan Code: NUPRCNPPSY

Program Information

The post-graduate program prepares registered nurses for national certification eligibility and licensure in an advanced practice specialty.  Advanced Practice registered nurses or registered nurses that hold a terminal degree (i.e. PhD, EdD, DNP) are eligible to apply.  

Specialties Available

  • Post-Graduate Certificate Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Post-Graduate Certificate Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMNHP) focuses on individuals across the lifespan (infancy through old age), families, and populations across the lifespan at risk for developing and/or having a diagnosis of psychiatric disorders or mental health problems.  The PHMNP provides primary mental health care to patients seeking mental health services in a wide range of settings.  Primary mental health care provided by the PMHNP involves relationship-based, continuous and comprehensive services, necessary for the promotion of optimal mental health, prevention, and treatment of psychiatric disorders and health maintenance.  This includes assessment, diagnosis, and management of mental health and psychiatric disorders across the lifespan.

Admission Requirements

The post-graduate program prepares registered nurses for national certification eligibility and licensure in an advanced practice specialty.  Advanced Practice registered nurses or registered nurses that hold a terminal degree (i.e., PhD, EdD, DNP) are eligible to apply.  

The following materials must be submitted:

  1. Completed UofL Graduate Admissions Application, including application fee.
  2. Official transcripts representing all college course work with a recommended cumulative graduate grade point average of at least 3.25 on 4.0 scale.  Baccalaureate and Graduate degree must be earned from an accredited nursing program (by NLN, CCNE or ACEN). A Master’s or Doctorate degree from a regionally accredited university is required. Applicants for this program must be nationally certified to practice as an advanced practice nurse.

  3. Two letters of recommendation from individuals chosen from among:  former faculty, current or immediate past employer, or other nursing/health professional who can speak of academic and/ or professional nursing capabilities and potential.  These letters should accompany the Letter of Evaluation form required by the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies.

  4. Goal Statement that discusses career goals, areas of expertise, and reasons for pursuing a Post-Graduate degree. Maximum of 2 pages; double spaced; 12-point font.

  5. Current Resume or CV. 

  6. RN verification of licensure from the Board of Nursing.  Eligibility for an RN license from the Kentucky Board of Nursing.

  7. Verification of advanced practice certification from a national certification agency (i.e. AANP, AACN, NAPNAP) if applicable.

  8. Proof of English Proficiency. International students for whom English is not their primary language must show English language proficiency by:

    • demonstration of a degree awarded from an acceptable English language institution, or

    • acceptable examinations: TOEFL; International English Language Testing System (IELTS); or successful completion of the exit examination for the advanced level of the intensive English as a Second Language Program. Recommended test scores are available on the University International Student website.

Program Requirements

Pre-Requisite Coursework

Students who have previously completed any of the prerequisite coursework in an accredited Nursing graduate degree program may be waived from taking those courses at UofL to meet certificate requirements.

NURS 741Advanced Pathophysiology4
NURS 740Advanced Pharmacology3
NURS 742Advanced Physical Assessment3
Minimum Total Hours10

Post-Graduate Certificate Coursework

Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
Semester 1Hours
Spring Semester  
NURS 770 Advanced Psych Assessment & Clinical Interview 2
NURS 771 Psychopathology 2
NURS 772 Psychopharmacology 2
 Hours6
Semester 2
Summer Semester  
NURS 773 Management of Psychiatric/Mental Health Conditions: Foundation of Individual Psychotherapy 3
 Hours3
Semester 3
Fall Semester  
NURS 774 Diagnosis and Management in Psych/Mental Health: Group Psychotherapy and Care of Special Populations 3
NURS 787 Clinical Practicum I 1 3
 Hours6
Year 2
Semester 1
Spring Semester  
NURS 775 Diagnosis and Management of Psychiatric/Mental Health Conditions 3
NURS 788 Clinical Practicum II 1 3
 Hours6
 Minimum Total Hours21