Certificate in Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist


The Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist (AG-CNS) post-graduate APRN certificate prepares graduates for advanced practice nursing in the role of the AG-CNS. The patient population of the AG-CNS is adults and older adults. Students become skilled in the three spheres of AG-CNS impact: patients (clinical expertise), nurses/nursing practice (coach/mentors) and health care systems (leaders of change). The curriculum includes expertise in two sub-specialties: advanced holistic nursing and older adult care. 

The AG-CNS certificate program requires a total of 21 credit hours and 500 clinical hours. One-third of the program credits or 7 credits may be accepted for transfer. 

Graduates of the program are eligible to sit for the national AG-CNS certification examination administered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. Students are urged to contact the specific Board of Nursing in the state in which they intend to practice in order to ensure they are in full compliance with the education, practice and certification requirements.

Open All | Close All


    Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Outcomes

    The following program outcomes will be achieved at completion of the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate in AG-CNS:

    1. Demonstrate professional role practice consistent with the competencies of the unique specialty at the master’s level.
    2. Translate theoretical and conceptual knowledge into advanced nursing practice actions that promote optimal health care quality and patient safety outcomes.
    3. Integrate informatics, health care technology, and interpersonal collaboration in the delivery of person-centered nursing practice for individuals and populations.
    4. Engage in systems leadership with a focus on preventive care, policy development, and patient advocacy.
    5. Integrate the Jesuit and Mercy traditions in providing culturally-competent, compassionate, holistic, and person-centered care with a commitment to human dignity in the contemporary world.

    Admission Criteria

    1. A graduate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited program.
    2. An unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse in the State of Michigan or in the state of home residence.
    3. Official transcripts from each institution of higher education attended.
    4. One letter of professional recommendation from someone in a supervisory capacity.
    5. An autobiographical statement of personal goals and objectives.
    6. Current resume or professional CV.
    7. An interview with graduate faculty.

    Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate

    Advanced Practice Core

    • NUR 5160 Advanced Health Assessment (3 credits)
    • HLH 5900 Advanced Pathophysiology (3 credits)
    • NUR 5800 Pharmacology for Advanced Practice Nurses (3 credits)

    AGCNS Concentration Courses

    • NUR 5748 Adult-Gerontology CNS Role and Theory I (3 credits)
    • NUR 5749 Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum I (includes 200 practicum hours) (2 credits)
    • NUR 5751 Wellness Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Practice (2 credits)
    • NUR 5752 Adult-Gerontology CNS Role and Theory II (3 credits)
    • NUR 5753 Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum II (includes 200 practicum hours) (2 credits)

    Total credits:  21



    The Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, Master of Science in Nursing degree, Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, and Post-graduate APRN Certificate at University of Detroit Mercy, McAuley School of Nursing are fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW Suite 750, Washington, DC  20001.  Phone:  (202) 887-6791.

    Program Contact Information

    Mitzi M. Saunders, PhD, APRN, CNS-C
    HP 324
    McNichols Campus
    Telephone: (313) 993-1767
    Fax: (313) 993-1271

    Suzanne Erwin, BSN
    Graduate Recruiter and Admissions Coordinator
    HP 121
    McNichols Campus
    Telephone:  (313) 993-1828