Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist

*Special Notice: Entrance exams (GRE or MAT) no longer required for Adult-Gerontology (AGCNS) and Neonatal (NCNS) Clinical Nurse Specialist applicants.

The Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist concentration prepares nurses for an advanced practice nursing role from wellness to acute care. Nationally approved clinical nurse specialist competencies are the basis of the curriculum.

Emphasis is placed on providing students with advanced theoretical knowledge and practice skills needed to improve patient care, nursing and the organizational systems in the neonatal population.

This concentration provides preparation for roles such as:

  • clinician
  • educator
  • clinical consultant
  • researcher
  • program planner
  • leader

The Clinical Nurse Specialist concentration prepares nursing professionals to be expert clinicians who provide direct patient care as well as population level care; helping to implement changes that improve outcomes for entire categories of patients.


The following faculty members will be your instructors as you move through the Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist concentration:

Concentration Admission Requirements

  • Masters admission requirements
  • Two years clinical experience in a neonatal unit prior to admission
  • Three professional references, including one from a neonatal clinician
Note: If you reside outside North Carolina, please contact the Program Director ( for guidance prior to starting an application.


The 43-semester hour curriculum includes core courses, clinical core courses and concentration courses.

The curriculum plans referenced below are only a suggested course sequence. The documents outline typical full-time and part-time courses of study.

Once admitted to the program, students will develop a plan of study with their advisor.

Curriculum Plan
Post-Master’s Curriculum Plan

For more information, contact Dr. Chelsea Passwater, Program Director, or please visit theĀ ECU Graduate Catalog.



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