Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Addressing the gap in mental health care

Develop your knowledge and skills to provide increasingly complex care while honing the interpersonal therapeutic expertise central to the nurse-client relationship.


Pending approval from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the School of Nursing’s Post-BSN DNP and post-master’s certificate programs will start this fall.

Shortages of qualified, mental health professionals are at crisis levels locally, statewide, nationally, and globally. Advance your career to meet the needs of the most vulnerable among us and help close the gap in access to mental healthcare.  

The mission of the Post-BSN DNP speciality is to graduate exceptional and therapeutic clinician leaders facing an increasingly-complex healthcare landscape while the post-master's certificate strives to train exceptional clinicians, exemplary critical thinkers, and effective therapeutic communicators with populations across the lifespan.

Our program will set you apart with opportunities for certifications in specialty areas, a course in addiction*, novel psychotherapeutics*, a specialty immersion and exceptional psychiatric mental health training opportunities.

*DNP program only



Our curriculum is designed to promote the core centrality of the nurse-client relationship while maintaining a neurobiologically-informed approach to increasing core knowledge in the behavioral and biological disciplines. You will learn evidence-based practice across the life span, gaining the ability to treat psychiatric disorders within individuals, families, and groups. Emphasis is placed on the development of psychiatric nurse practitioners who will be prepared to function autonomously in a variety of clinical settings.

Post Graduate Certificate PMHNP (PGC)

Designed for practicing APRNs who have a master’s degree in nursing and is a 24-credit hour, three-(3) semester program comprised of six (6) courses. Students will complete 570 precepted clinical practicum hours (direct practice) as well as simulated and virtual experiences.


An 83-credit hour, seven (7) semester program, with a total of 1,200 precepted clinical practicum hours (930 direct clinical practice + 270 project hours) as well as 75 contact hours of simulated onsite/virtual experiences.​

​Both PMHNP programs will be delivered using a hybrid model with online synchronous/asynchronous classroom learning sessions, simulated learning experiences onsite or virtually via intensives, clinical training at sites where students are located, and weekly group and individual clinical supervision.​

During the clinical courses, PMHNP Clinical Practice III: Advanced Integrative Clinical Practice (PGC, DNP) and Advanced Clinical Practicum Immersion (DNP), students will be supported in pertinent clinical areas of focus. Participation in these areas may result in additional certificates and badges. ​

Potential areas of focus may include: ​

  • Telepsychiatry​
  • Complementary & Integrative Mental Health
  • Master Psychopharmacology​
  • Global Mental Health
  • Addiction​
  • Trauma and Resilience​
  • Public Mental Health​
  • Veteran Mental Health​
  • Vulnerable Populations Mental Health​
  • Child & Adolescent Mental Health​
  • Geropsychiatry​
  • Palliative Care Mental Health​
  • Caregiver Mental Health ​
  • Psycho Oncology​
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Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the program, you must submit the following items:

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited nursing program (CCNE, NLNAC)
  • Unencumbered RN license in the state of Georgia or a multi-state RN license

Competitive applicants will have direct patient care experience of a minimum of one (1) year of full time employment as a registered nurse in psychiatric and mental health, behavioral health or equivalent similar care setting with a psychiatric mental health population focus.  

If you’d like to proceed with applying prior to one year of RN practice, we strongly advise that your application, personal statement, and recommendations speak specifically to the relevant experience that you believe make you a competitive applicant.  

Students who need an F1 visa are not eligible for admission due to the amount of content delivered online. The Department of Homeland Security does not allow our DNP or MSN programs to issue F1 visas.


Admissions Checklist

  • Application for Admission
  • $50 Application Fee
  • Official transcripts from each school attended
  • Resume
  • Personal statement
  • 2-3 References (preference for at least one to be a nursing supervisor)
  • Students with international nursing degrees must provide an evaluation from Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools ( for previous nursing coursework.
  • Students with international transcripts for non-nursing degrees must provide an evaluation from World Education Services ( for previous non-nursing coursework.
  • TOEFL, IELTS, or Duo-lingo scores are required if English is a second language. Read Emory University's accepted tests policy.

Transcript Submission

PREFERRED METHOD: Choose Emory University - School of Nursing in the electronic transcript systems or have your school email your official transcripts to

If your school does not participate in the electronic transcript system or cannot email your transcript(s) please have a printed copy mailed to:

Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs
Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing
Emory University
1520 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30322

Please note all items in application checklist must be verified by the Office of Enrollment and Student Affairs before they are marked as received in the application portal.

Featured Story

SON to launch new programs training mental health nurses

SON to launch new programs training mental health nurses

The Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing plans to offer DNP, and post-master’s certificate programs in Psychiatry/Mental Health in Fall 2022
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About the School of Nursing

Our Mission
Educate visionary nurse leaders and scholars
Generate and apply knowledge
Transform nursing, health, and systems of health care within the local and global community
our Vision
To promote optimal health and wellness for all by creating, changing, and leading through innovative teaching, discovery, nursing practice, and social action in our local and global communities.
Our Values
To promote optimal health and wellness for all by creating, changing, and leading through innovative teaching, discovery, nursing practice, and social action in our local and global communities.
We believe the only way forward is to share what we know and work together, across communities, perspectives, and cultures.
Social Responsibility
We treat all with respect and dignity and actively engage with others to positively influence health and social justice for all humans.
We use our knowledge and rigor to create the world’s newest and most exciting approaches to health education and health care.
We stand as an example, shaping nursing, health care, and our school through vision, courage, and optimism.

Frequently Asked Questions

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