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Fresno State’s master’s degree nursing program has regained its accreditation a year after the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education stripped it over documentation issues, the university said Tuesday afternoon.

The master’s program is accredited through June 2025.

The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education also announced the reaccreditation of the School of Nursing bachelor’s degree nursing program through 2030 and initial accreditation of the online psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner post-graduate certificate program, also through 2030, the university said.

The School of Nursing learned in June 2019 that the master’s degree program accreditation had been revoked when the school failed to meet the commission’s documentation requirements. The program had graduated about 1,500 since it was first accredited in 1968.

The commission said the master’s program failed to adequately document its evaluation and assessment of student outcomes, clinical experiences, faculty performance, and program goals.

No Admissions Last Fall

Students were given the option to remain in the program, take a leave of absence, or withdraw, and 23 remained, of whom 22 earned degrees in May. Twenty-eight people had applied for admission in fall 2019, but no students were admitted when the program lost its accreditation.

Sixteen students are enrolled for the upcoming academic year.

After losing the master’s program accreditation, the School of Nursing worked with Fresno State’s assessment coordinator and hired an outside consultant to prepare for the subsequent site review that led to having the master’s program accreditation restored.

“Faculty in the School of Nursing were committed to meeting the CCNE standards and more importantly, strengthening identified areas of concern,” said Dr. Sylvia Miller, chair of the School of Nursing. “The success of our students is vital to growing a health care workforce in the Central Valley and, with that, we are pleased to admit our newest cohort of the master’s program this coming fall 2020 semester.”

Accreditation Long Overdue

Accreditation of the online psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner post-graduate certificate program comes nearly a year after the university discovered the one-year program had never been accredited as advertised.

Sixty students who had completed the program, which launched in 2009, were given five years by American Nurses Credentialing Center to earn the same certificate from an accredited program. Fresno State arranged for all 60 to enroll in CSU San Marcos’ program at no cost.

Meanwhile, the new Independent Doctor of Nursing Practice program, which is now accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, will undergo a scheduled CCNE site review in September. The university said such is standard practice for all new degree programs.

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