Nurse Practitioners are becoming more and more sought after. These are nurses who have had extra training (typically a master’s in nursing) along with additional clinical experience. Once certified as a nurse practitioner, you can order tests and write prescriptions, acting as more of a healthcare provider on your own. If you’re interested in becoming a nurse practitioner, you might want to get a head start on that master’s program by using these 16 open courseware classes to brush up on your skills. Though you won’t get any credit, the courses are free and can help prepare you for grad school.
Course from MIT
- Introduction to Biology: This course from MIT is basic biology.
Courses from Johns Hopkins
- Introduction to Health Policy: This course from Johns Hopkins explores the basic issues in health policy and management.
- Adolescent Health and Development: Another course from Johns Hopkins, this course covers the development of the adolescent body.
- Epidemiology of Infectious Disease: This course from Johns Hopkins explores infectious disease epidemiology.
- Health Issues for Aging Populations: This course from Johns Hopkins explores aging and health policy related to treating older persons.
- Ethical Issues in Public Health: This course from Johns Hopkins explores ethics in healthcare.
- Impact of Pandemic Influenza on Public Health: This course from Johns Hopkins explores the public impact of an influenza pandemic.
- Environmental Health: This course from Johns Hopkins explores environmental concerns and the health problems associated with them.
Courses from Tufts
- Human Growth and Development: Tufts University offers this course on how humans develop and grow.
- Cardiovascular Pathophysiology: This course from Tufts offers an in depth look at the cardiovascular system.
- Musculoskeletal Pathophysiology: This course from Tufts offers an in depth look at the human musculoskeletal system.
- Renal Pathophysiology: Learn how the kidneys function and adapt to disease in this course from Tufts University.
- Genetics: This course from Tufts covers basic human genetics, including how they contribute to disease.
- Diabetes Mellitis: Diagnosis and Pathophysiology: This course from Tufts University explores diagnosing and treating diabetes, one of America’s most prevalent chronic diseases.
Course from Columbia University
- America’s Battle for the Cure: The Culture and Politics of Breast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment: This course from Columbia University explores the politics and culture that surround breast cancer in the United States.
Course from Connexions
- Images of Memorable Cases: 50 Years at the Bedside: This course from Connexions is a study in the art and science of medical diagnosis.
As baby boomers age, and the US rolls out universal healthcare, the demand for healthcare is growing, just as there is a shortage of healthcare professionals to provide that care.
The nurse practitioner is the perfect option to help bridge the gap. With their additional training and clinical experience, they can provide many of the services of doctors and become a family’s primary healthcare professional.
Nurse practitioners have great job opportunities ahead of them, particularly as more and more states allow them to go into private practice and become healthcare providers. Today, 28 states allow nurse practitioners to act as healthcare providers, and more states are on the way in order to ease their healthcare burdens.
However, there is currently a shortage of nurse practitioners, just as there is a shortage of other nursing professionals. If you’re already an RN, and have interest in becoming a nurse practitioner, there are many schools you can choose from and you’re almost certain to have a job waiting for you once your education and clinical experience is through. Choosing a career as a nurse practitioner can offer you a better salary, plenty of job satisfaction and plenty of job security.