Nurse working on a laptop

Undergraduate Certificate inNursing Management

Program summary

Gain a better understanding of the administration of nursing services and learn to manage budgets, data, and nursing personnel. The courses in this online certificate program give you the opportunity to acquire the latest techniques and skills, which you can apply in your health care organization.

Application deadline

Apply by August 18 to start August 26

Credits and costs

12 Credits$626/$671 per credit

Expand Your Nursing Career Options with an Online Certificate in Nursing Management

If you are a nurse who aspires to a supervisory role, this 12-credit online certificate program can help you demonstrate your initiative and learn management skills, as you enhance the credentials on your résumé. This program can also provide you with an understanding of the basics of health care organizations and administration, show you how to analyze and manage health care data, and help you apply the latest techniques of personnel management, while studying online at your convenience.

Why an Online Certificate through Penn State?

Earn a recognized credential — The Undergraduate Certificate in Nursing Management is an outreach program of the highly respected Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing and delivered online through the innovative World Campus.

Build a solid foundation — As a graduate of the nursing management certificate program, you can apply up to 6 certificate credits toward Penn State's online RN to BSN degree. In addition, courses in the certificate program may be applicable toward graduate work and may satisfy continuing professional education requirements.

Usable skills — The 12 credits in the online nursing management certificate include classes on data management, human resources, and organization — the type of information that you can apply immediately to demonstrate your competency, leadership, and management potential.

Who Should Apply?

If you have a valid RN license and wish to enhance your professional credentials or take courses that will provide an introduction to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program, Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing's online nursing management certificate program was designed for you.


The online nursing management certificate is a 12-credit program of study. The delivery method for the courses in this program is an online group format, with a group of students progressing together through each course. The course content and activities are available in electronic format, and access to the Web is required to complete this program.

Note: The curriculum in Penn State's online nursing management certificate will help prepare you for national certification and you will receive a certificate from Penn State upon successful completion of the courses. However, you will still need to pass the official certification exam and meet all of the eligibility requirements in order to be awarded the national credential.

Prescribed Courses (12 credits)

Students need to earn at least a "C" grade in all 4 courses to be eligible for the certificate.

  • 3

    Introduction to organizational theory and principles of practice in the administration of nursing services and patient care.

  • 3

    Analysis of information systems to manage nursing service organizations. Includes financial management, the budgeting processes, and productivity measurement.

  • 3

    Human resource management and related factors in nursing service organizations.

  • 3

    Focuses on the application of management principles in the role of the nurse manager.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.

Costs and Financial Aid

Undergraduate Tuition

Undergraduate tuition is calculated based on the number of credits for which you register and the number of total credits you have accrued at or transferred to Penn State.

Tuition is due shortly after each semester begins and rates are assessed every semester of enrollment.

2023–24 Academic Year Rates

Tuition rates for the fall 2023, spring 2024, and summer 2024 semesters.

How many credits do you plan to take per semester?If you have 59 or fewer creditsIf you have 60 or more credits
11 or fewer$626 per credit$671 per credit
12–19$7,602 per semester$8,206 per semester

Undergraduate students taking more than 19 credits will be charged the flat tuition rate plus the regular per credit hour rate for each credit above 19. 

2024–25 Academic Year Rates

Tuition rates for the fall 2024, spring 2025, and summer 2025 semesters.

How many credits do you plan to take per semester?If you have 59 or fewer creditsIf you have 60 or more credits
11 or fewer$632 per credit$678 per credit
12–19$7,678 per semester$8,288 per semester

Undergraduate students taking more than 19 credits will be charged the flat tuition rate plus the regular per credit hour rate for each credit above 19. 

Paying for Your Certificate

Students pursuing a certificate are considered "nondegree," a status that is not eligible for federal student aid, including the Federal Direct Stafford Loan program. A private alternative loan may be an option to consider.

Additionally, Penn State offers many ways to pay for your education, including an installment plan and third-party payments. Penn State World Campus also offers an Employer Reimbursement and Tuition Deferment Plan. Learn more about the options for paying for your education.

Students pursuing a degree and meeting all other eligibility requirements may qualify for financial aid.

Financial Aid and Military Benefits

Some students may qualify for financial aid. Take the time to research financial aid, scholarships, and payment options as you prepare to apply. Military service members, veterans, and their spouses or dependents should explore these potential military education benefits and financial aid opportunities, as well.

To view the detailed list of cost of attendance elements, select “World Campus” as the location on the tuition site.

How to Apply

Deadlines and Important Dates

  • Fall DeadlineApply by August 18 to start August 26
  • Spring DeadlineApply by December 22 to start January 13
  • Summer DeadlineApply by May 5, 2025, to start May 11, 2025

All supporting materials should be sent following the submission of your application.

For current and future course registration deadlines, visit the Registrar's website to view the academic calendar by semester

Admissions Help

If you have questions about the admissions process, email
[email protected]
or call 814-865-1146.

Admission Requirements

To apply for this program, you must be a high school graduate, or have completed your GED.

Additionally, persons who want to enroll in any or all of these courses must be a currently licensed registered nurse.

Technical Requirements 

Review the technical requirements for this program.

Ready to Learn More?

Get the resources you need to make informed decisions about your education. Request information on this program and other programs of interest by completing this form.

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Ready to take the next step toward your Penn State undergraduate certificate?

Apply by August 18 to start August 26. How to Apply 

Start or Advance Your Career

A group of nurses sitting at a table together having a meeting

You can use the knowledge gained from this program and the support of Penn State career resources to pursue careers in a variety of fields, depending on your goals.

Career Opportunities for Graduates

Expand your clinical and technical abilities and gain the skills you need to successfully advance in your career. Potential career opportunities for graduates of the program include:

  • department manager
  • manager of health information
  • service manager
  • nursing manager

Career Services to Set You Up for Success

Student having a virtual meeting on a laptop with a career counselor

From the day you're accepted as a student, you can access resources and tools provided by Penn State World Campus Career Services to further your career. These resources are beneficial whether you're searching for a job or advancing in an established career.

  • Opportunities to connect with employers
  • Career counselor/coach support
  • Occupation and salary information
  • Internships
  • Graduate school resources 

Contact Us

For questions about admissions and applications, please contact World Campus Central:

World Campus Central
Phone: 814-865-1146
[email protected]


  • M. Ellen Hollars

    • Degree
      MSN, Penn State
    • Degree
      BSN, Penn State

    M. Ellen Hollars provides instruction for Penn State World Campus nursing management certificate courses and independent study courses, teaches part-time as a clinical instructor for undergraduate nursing students, and serves as the COO of VNA Health System. Her research and practice interests include community health, home health and hospice, person-centered care, care collaboration, geriatric outcomes, and models of care delivery for home health. She has served community organizations in both a leadership and volunteer capacity, and she is passionate about teaching and helping new RNs and RNs pursuing their BSN degrees to be the best nurses that they can possibly be.

  • Mary Alyce Nelson

    • Degree
      DNP, Penn State
    • Degree
      MSN, Bloomsburg University
    • Degree
      BSN, Villa Maria College

    Dr. Mary Alyce Nelson is the coordinator of the Penn State World Campus RN to BSN program and an assistant professor/undergraduate nursing coordinator at Penn State University Park. She has held various administrative roles in inpatient, outpatient, and educational settings, and her areas of expertise are mental health and health care leadership. Her research area of interest is alternative models of mental health treatment in rural outpatient clinics.

  • Tiffany Patton, RN

    • Degree
      MSN, Nursing Education and Administration, Mountain State University
    • Degree
      BSN, Penn State

    Tiffany Patton received her school nurse certification from Slippery Rock University. Her background is in geriatrics, medical-surgical, psychology, school nursing, and management. She is a student in the doctoral program through the College of Education at Penn State.


Ready to take the next step toward your Penn State undergraduate certificate?

Apply by August 18 to start August 26. How to Apply