Skip to Main Content
The Graduate School

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate


The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) Certificate track is designed to be a post-MSN non-degree seeking option for those who do not wish to complete the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). This program is designed for those who already possess, at a minimum, a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), are licensed as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), hold national certification as a Nurse Practitioner (NP), and wish to become certified as a PMHNP. The curriculum for the program is based on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Essentials for Doctoral Education for Advanced Practice (2006) and the National Organization for Nursing Practitioner Faculties (NONPF) Criteria for Evaluation of Nurse Practitioner Programs. The program objectives build upon those for the masters in nursing program.

The PMHNP Certificate program is designed to include education and preparation that will assist the student in acquiring the advanced knowledge and clinical skills to provide best practices and comprehensive care to clients across the lifespan. The clinical component of this program will focus on the mental health care needs of individuals and families whether in outpatient, inpatient, or private practice settings.

The program currently offers online studies in this track with courses following the traditional full-length semesters. Note that financial aid is not available for the certificate track as it is not a degree program.

School of Nursing FAQ

Special Notes

Certificate programs are not eligible for financial aid. Please visit the Department of Financial Aid for more information regarding eligibility.

Application Deadlines

Spring Term . . . . . . . . July 1

School of Nursing Important Dates

Graduate Program Director

Dr. Marie Smith-East
Assistant Professor
Program Contacts
Dr. Beth Dibble
Assistant Director for Admissions, Nursing Programs
Emily Schroder
Academic Advisor

The following items must be submitted no later then the deadline posted above. Incomplete applications with outstanding requirements, or those post-marked after the posted deadline, are subject to cancellation. Once an application has been canceled, the decision can not be reversed. Applicants may apply for the next application cycle.

  • UNF admission application
  • Application fee
  • If applicable, collection holds and judicial holds must be cleared
  • All of the below university and program requirements
  • University Requirements
    • A baccalaureate degree from an accepted institutional accreditor, or its equivalent from a foreign institution, with a GPA of 3.0 or higher in all work attempted in the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate study.
    • Transcripts, and foreign evaluations if applicable, from all post-secondary institutions attended. Admitted students will be prompted to provide official copies. 
  • Program Requirements
    • Resume or curriculum vitae
      • Nursing roles/experiences
      • 2,000 hours in clinical practice as a licensed nurse practitioner (1 year full-time experience)
    • Proctored application essay (by invitation only)
      • APA format, not to exceed 500 words to address each of the following areas describing
        • your future career plans and how UNF's PMHNP program will help you achieve those career goals;
        • the changes you will make in your personal and professional life to ensure success in the program given its rigor as a graduate track; and
        • identify one significant contemporary mental health-related issue or problem in U.S. healthcare and explore how members of the nursing profession can help address that issue or solve that problem.
    • Admission interview (by invitation only)
    • Professional licensure
      • Applicant should be active as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in their state of practice
      • Copy of actual license showing expiration date is required
    • Certification
      • Active national certification as a nurse practitioner
      • Copy of actual certificate showing expiration date is required
      • We will also accept applications from those nationally certified as a CNM, CNS, or CRNA with a B or better in graduate-level coursework for pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, and assessment (the assessment course must include across the lifespan)
    • Masters degree in Nursing (MSN) from a regionally accredited institution
      • Program accreditation by the CCNE or ACEN (formerly NLNAC)
      • Minimum graduate GPA of 3.50


    The resume, essay, professional licensure, and certification should be updated with each new application unless prior submitted documents have been approved for use by the nursing admissions team.

    Applicants who do not meet the minimum academic and work experience requirements will not be considered for the proctored essay or interview portion of the selection process.