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Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Post-Graduate Certificate

Certificate Level: Graduate
Admission Requirements: Master's degree
Certificate Type: Post-Graduate
Number of Credits to Completion: 39.0
Instructional Delivery: Online, Campus
Calendar Type: Quarter
Maximum Time Frame: 3 years
Financial Aid Eligibility: Not aid eligible

**This program is not currently accepting applications from students living in Iowa, Louisiana, or Wisconsin.



Drexel University is authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council and meets the requirements and minimum educational standards established for degree-granting institutions under the Degree-Granting Institutions Act. This authorization is subject to periodic review and authorizes Drexel University to offer field placement components for specific degree programs. The Council may be contacted for a list of currently authorized programs. Authorization by the council does not carry with it an endorsement by the council of the institution or its programs. Any person desiring information about the requirements of the act or the applicability of those requirements to the institution may contact the Council at P.O. Box 43430, Olympia, WA 98504-3430.

**Drexel University is approved by the Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission to provide practice experiences in Washington State for MSN/Clinical Nurse Leader, MSN/Clinical Trials Research, MSN/Leadership in Health Systems Management, MSN/Nurse Educator and Faculty Role, MSN/Adult Gerontology Acute Care NP, MSN/Adult Gerontology Primary Care NP, MSN/Family Individual Across the Lifespan NP, MSN/Pediatric Acute Care NP, MSN/Pediatric Primary Care & Pediatric Acute Care NP, MSN/Pediatric Primary Care NP, MSN/Psychiatric Mental Health NP, and MSN/Women’s Health Gender Related NP programs. For more information, go to the following website.


Students living in North Carolina may be admitted to the program, however cannot complete their clinical practicum requirements in the state of North Carolina. Clinicals may be completed in a neighboring state.



Drexel University accepts New York residents into this program. Clinical Rotations, however, cannot be in New York State. This will not affect New York certification and licensure.


This Drexel Online certificate is offered to individuals who have earned a master's degree in nursing and seek further preparation as an Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AG-ACNP).

This certificate program is designed to prepare practitioners for professional practice in the management of medical, surgical, and critical care patient populations.

Acute care nurse practitioners are needed in a variety of healthcare settings, including: intensive care units, consult services, hospitalist teams, palliative care services, home care, sub acute long-term care hospitals, specialty clinics and research intense settings.

The program is 29 credits and can generally be completed in one year of part-time study. Graduates will be eligible to apply for certification as an Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner through the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN).

Students who are board certified nurse practitioners in another discipline may be eligible for a reduction in course work and clinical hours. An individual program of study will be formulated by performing a formal Gap Analysis of previously completed course work. Students wishing to be considered for a reduction in course or clinical work are required to submit syllabi, course calendars, and transcripts of courses under consideration.

  • Master's Prepared Non-Nurse Practitioners, Non-practicing NPs:  Advanced Pathophysiology, Advanced Pharmacology, and Physical Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning courses must be no more than 5 years old when entering the program. These students are also required to complete 800 clinical hours (ACNP I to ACNP V).
  • Practicing NPs:  Advanced Pathophysiology, Advanced Pharmacology, and Physical Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning courses are accepted even if they are more than 5 years old (on the basis that the student is a practicing as an NP); clinical courses could be up to 500 hours dependent on a GAP Analysis.

If these courses (Advanced Pathophysiology, Advanced Pharmacology, and Physical Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning) are not transferred in they must be taken at Drexel prior to the first clinical course. Students should check with the MSN Program Coordinator for the exact schedule.

All students are required to successfully complete Adult-Gerontology Acute Care NP specific pharmacology at Drexel prior to beginning the clinical courses.

What you'll learn

This program provides the knowledge and skills needed to improve and sustain the health of acutely ill patients. Emphasis is placed upon diagnostic reasoning and clinical decision making.

Graduates will be eligible to apply for certification as an Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner.

What makes the AG-ACNP Certificate program unique?

  • Online lectures are offered in a highly interactive, e-learning method that challenges and engages students.
  • Bridges the gap in formal education requirements between your current certification and what is required for Adult Gerontology Acute Care certification.
  • Convenient format ideal for working professionals.
  • Students come to campus during following courses for 2-4 days for a standardized patient lab experience (SPL), human patient simulation (HPS) experience, and skills lab activities:
    • NUR 570-AGACNP I
    • NUR 571-AGACNP II
    • NUR 572-AGACNP III
    • NUR 573-AGACNP IV

Note: Drexel University is not authorized to admit students from Louisiana and South Dakota to our online nursing programs


The College of Nursing and Health Professions has a compliance process that may be required for every student. Some of these steps may take significant time to complete. Please plan accordingly.

Visit the Compliance pages for more information.

Admission Requirements

Technical Standards - Nursing 

A Master's degree with a major in nursing from a regionally accredited program.

Cumulative grade point average of at least 3.5 on a scale of 4.0

Standardized Tests:


  • Official transcripts must be sent directly to Drexel from all the colleges/universities that you have attended. Transcripts must be submitted in a sealed envelope with the college/university seal over the flap. Please note that transcripts are required regardless of number of credits taken or if the credits were transferred to another school. An admission decision may be delayed if you do not send transcripts from all colleges/universities attended.
  • Transcripts must show course-by-course grades and degree conferrals. If your school does not notate degree conferrals on the official transcripts, you must provide copies of any graduate or degree certificates.
  • If your school issues only one transcript for life, you are required to have a course-by-course evaluation completed by an approved transcript evaluation agency
  • Use our Transcript Lookup Tool to assist you in contacting your previous institutions


Two professional letters of recommendation (from either a previous or immediate supervisor and/or a former nursing faculty member who can attest to the applicant's clinical knowledge, skill and potential aptitude for graduate study). References will not be accepted from colleagues or family members.

  • You may use our electronic letter of recommendation service 
  • If a recommender prefers to submit an original, hard copy letter, please remind them that it must include an ink signature and be submitted in a sealed envelope.

Personal Statement/ Essay:
A personal essay (under 1,000 words) emphasizing your professional goals.

A personal interview via phone or in-person may be required.


A copy of your current, unrestricted United States RN license or eligibility for licensure as a registered nurse. License verification from your nursing license registry website are acceptable. Applicants must have a current RN license in the state of Pennsylvania. In addition, students are required to have a RN Nursing License for the state in which the clinical practicum rotations are being completed. 

Clinical Work/Volunteer Experience:

International Students:
International applicants, as well as immigrants to the United States and U.S. permanent residents whose native language is not English and who have not received a bachelor's degree or higher in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom, must show proficiency in English speaking as well as listening, writing and reading. American citizens born on U.S. military bases abroad may be waived from the TOEFL requirement after providing documentation of this status. Otherwise, applicants must meet one of the following requirements: 

If you take the TOEFLiBT exam, you must have: 

  • a minimum combined score for listening, writing, and reading sections of 79 plus a speaking section score of 26 or higher.
  • a minimum score of 550 or higher and a Test of Spoken English score (TSE) of 55 or higher.

Tuition and Fee Rates
Please visit the Tuition and Fee Rates page on Drexel Central

Application Link (if outside organization):


CCNE: This program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036 (202-887-6791)