Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP)

Primary and/or Acute Care Tracks

Masters (MN), Post-Masters Certificate (PMCO), and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) options.


Program Description

The Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP) Program is designed to prepare advanced practice registered nurses to deliver primary and/or acute care to children (birth to 21 years of age) across practice settings and institutional boundaries.

The overall objective of the PNP Program is to provide the foundation and scaffolding for students to become competent and caring pediatric nurse practitioners, scholars, and leaders. The program includes both didactic and clinical courses, beginning with foundational coursework and advancing to specialized clinical applications. In addition to providing direct care to children, graduates are prepared as lifelong learners, leaders, and advocates for children and their families.

Portland Based

The PNP program is Portland-based program. Students work closely with faculty and are required to participate in 1:1 annual reviews with the PNP Program Director. The expectation is that students come ready and open to learning with/from faculty, clinical preceptors, peers, and the children and families they are privileged to care for.


A PNP may be certified in primary care (PC), acute care (AC), or both (PC-AC). The scope of practice for the PNP-PC- or PNP-AC is not setting specific, but instead is based on the child’s health-related needs:

Primary Care (PC) Track
The PNP-PC practices wherever pediatric patients are in need of primary care. The focus for the PNP-PC is an ongoing relationship with the child and family in the delivery of comprehensive health care and coordination of health services. Accordingly, course work concentrates on foundational knowledge of child growth and development, health promotion and disease prevention behaviors and interventions, and common acute/chronic illnesses and/or conditions.

Acute Care (AC) Track
The focus for the PNP-AC is the delivery of restorative care, characterized by rapidly changing clinical conditions. The PNP-AC practices in acute care settings, such as intensive care units (ICU) or Emergency Departments; however they may also practice wherever pediatric patients are acutely ill, physiologically unstable, technologically dependent, and/or vulnerable to complications. The focus for the PNP-AC is the delivery of restorative care, characterized by rapidly changing clinical conditions.


Students will begin with foundational coursework in advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, and advanced health assessment. The curriculum builds on this foundation adding advanced didactic pediatric coursework and exposing students to varied clinical rotations through pediatric primary, acute, specialty, and/or chronic care clinical sites. While students will choose a track (e.g. PC, AC), the entire first layer of curriculum is identical for everyone. As each student progresses, clinical immersion in track-specific experiences are individually mapped to ensure students graduate, not only with a broad exposure to the role, but also some deep learning opportunities.

The program was developed for full-time study. Students opting for part time may have to wait until specific courses are offered, as coursework is offered using a specific sequence and only once each year.

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For program specifics, Student Learning Outcomes and detailed school information, check out the School of Nursing Catalog/Student Handbook.