Clinical Nurse Leader Programs
Becoming a Clinical Nurse Leader is a great way to assume a leadership position in nursing without giving up your patient care role. If you would like to help teach other nurses how to provide effective and safe care to patients, design policies and procedures and maintain your active role within healthcare, a CNL program may be right for you.
You can also take our Nursing Specialties Quiz to match your personality with the nursing career that fits you best!
The Clinical Nurse Leader is seen as a guardian of care, ensuring that evidence based practice is incorporated into nursing practice, and routinely serving as the main educator and the lead coordinator of interdisciplinary care practices. If you are ready to learn more about how you can enter this profession, contact the schools you see below to learn more.
The Clinical Nurse Leader role has been the subject of much discussion since its creation by the AACN. The primary focus of the role is on managing care plans and care delivery to improve patient outcomes. There is less emphasis on directly providing primary care, however most CNLs continue to oversee entire units of patients, thereby maintaining a line to direct patient care.
There is a great deal of information about the role of the CNL on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) website, if you are just beginning to look into this profession. If you are ready to get program information from schools, select your state below and contact the schools you see listed.
The first step in becoming a Clinical Nurse Leader is to pursue a CNL track as part of a nationally accredited Masters of Science in Nursing program. The CNL Certification Examination is administered at the end of the program by the AACN’s Commission on Nurse Certification. As always, you should also make sure to check with the Board of Nursing in the state where you intend to practice, for any state specific requirements.