Masters Degree in Nursing



The School offers two types of masters’ degrees, namely a research masters and a coursework masters. Both types take a minimum of two years when taken on a part-time basis.

1. Research Masters:

The requirements for this degree are that the candidate completes a research project and produces a dissertation.

This type of degree aims at increasing scholarly skills such as researching, theorizing, and analyzing. It does not increase clinical, teaching or managerial skills.

It is suitable for people interested in pursuing an academic career in research. It is also an option for candidates who live too far from the campus to attend course work modules on a weekly basis.

Student fees are paid per calendar year, which means that whether you register in January or November of the same year, the fees are the same fees. The School does not allow students to register throughout the year, but only at the beginning of the year.

Since students come into the programme from different undergraduate programmes, and with various research backgrounds, we require that they attend a week-long research workshop sometime in the course of the first year of registration.This renews the research knowledge of all students,and puts everybody on an equal footing. Every effort is made to pair the student with a research supervisor whose research expertise and interest is similar to the interest of the student.

2. Course Work Masters

The requirements for this degree are that the student completes 160 credits worth of course-work (about five semester courses and examination papers), appropriate experience and a research project in the student’s area of specialization in nursing.

Candidates have to attend lectures one day per week (26 days per year) two summer schools of one or two weeks each and two winter schools of one or two weeks each. Candidates must therefore make adequate arrangements with employers before registering.

The degree cannot be done by correspondence. Students may be expected to do one or two week’s clinical practica during university vacation in July and September.

For the clinical degree, students have to have full-time or part-time employment in their area of specialty and arrange to do the appropriate additional clinical practica. This means at least one day per week for four semesters (52 days). The education coursework masters is only available to full-time students.

Students do two or three semester courses during the first year, and the remaining one or two courses during the second year. The last six months should be spent on the research project. The courses available in the School are listed here; however one course may also be taken in another School within the Faculty.

Clinical masters’ degrees are offered in the specialties listed under Optional Courses. Some specialities are only offered in alternate years.

  • Community Health Nursing (generally in even numbered years e.g. 2010,2012)
  • Maternal and Child Health Nursing and General Nursing (generally in ordd-numbered years e.g. 2009;2011)

2.1 Compulsory Courses:

  • Advanced Practice Nurse role in the S.A. context (16 credits)
  • Nursing Research & Nursing Research Methods (16 credits)

2.2 Optional Courses

Critical Care and Trauma (Clinical)

  • Essentials of Critical Care Nursing (16 credits)
  • Applied Critical Care Nursing (16 credits)
  • Trauma Nursing and Life Support (16 credits)

Mental Health Nursing (Clinical)

  • Advanced psychiatric nursing skills (16 credits)
  • Current issues in Psychiatric Care (16 credits)
  • Psychosocial rehabilitation (16 credits)


Community Health Nursing (Clinical)

  • Primary Care (16 credits)
  • Community Health Nursing (16 credits)
  • Epidemiology (16 credits)
  • Health Measurement l & ll (16 credits)


Advanced Midwifery and Maternal-Child Health Nursing (Clinical)

  • Advanced Midwifery and Neonatal Nursing (32 credits)
  • Child and Adolescent Health (16 credits)
  • Women’s Health (16 credits)
  • Family Therapy (Optional)


Gerontological Nursing (Clinical)

  • Theoretical Basis for Gerontological Nursing (16 Credits)
  • Assessment of a geriatric client (16 credits)
  • The care of the aging client (16 credits)


Health Services Administration

  • Comparative Health Care Systems (16 credits)
  • Ebaluation of Health Care Systems (16 credits)

Nursing Education

  • Educational administration (24 credits)
  • Progressive Education for Health Professionals l (24 credits)
  • Progressive Education for Health Professionals ll (24 credits)


Optional Courses for Nursing Education

  • Community and Problem-based education (16 credits)
  • Fundamental Education (16 credits)


Nursing Research

  • Nursing Research & Nursing Research Methods (16 credits)
  • Qualitative Research (16 credits)
  • Health Measurement l & ll (16 credits)



Research Masters:

  • A 65% average in the under-graduate degree and a 60% average in an Honours degree and / or passing an admission examination.
  • An honors degree is required for this degree.

The writing of the admission examination takes a full morning, and should be arranged by appointment with the School of Nursing between July and early October of the preceding year.


Doing a Masters degree costs about R16000. Please make adequate arrangements regarding payment prior to arrival. Additional costs include traveling to and from Durban, board and lodging in Durban, books, and photocopying of reading material. Please make adequate arrangements for finances, so that this does not become an added stress during a very full and exacting academic programme.

Fees are increased regularly, and candidates must contact the university fees division for updated figures. Tel No.: (031) 2602277.


1. Contact Mrs Carol Dhanraj at the School of Nursing Tel.No: 031 2602255/ 260 2499; Fax 031 2601543; Email Address to make an appointment to visit the School and for enquirers about the entrance examination

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