Musculoskeletal Health/Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Certificate (Post-Master's) - Hybrid

Prepare for advanced practice and board certification

This specialty certification in orthopedics and sports medicine will broaden the expertise of Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants, preparing them to care for patients with musculoskeletal complaints in the primary care and specialty settings of orthopedics and sports medicine.

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Advance Your Career

Musculoskeletal complaints are the most frequent reasons that patients seek medical attention.  According to the United States Bone and Joint Initiative, Musculoskeletal diseases account for more than 50% of the disabling conditions reported by adults, and according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, an estimated 126.6 million Americans (1 in 2 adults) are affected by a musculoskeletal condition.  USJ’s certificate program is the only program in the Northeast and only one of two in the United States.

Program Benefits

This program will prepare advanced practice nurses and physician assistants to:

  • Evaluate and manage selected acute and chronic musculoskeletal conditions across the lifespan. Outpatient, inpatient, and operative care will be emphasized.
  • Diagnose and manage selected musculoskeletal conditions across the lifespan. Building on evaluation and management, office procedures such as joint injections, casting and splinting, and radiography will be the emphasis.
  • Understand and use practice models for advanced practice nursing and orthopedic surgery. Referral patterns, collaborative and independent practice, billing and coding, and interprofessional practice for improved patient outcomes will be the emphasis.

Students in Action

Sarah Royer (left) and Olasunkanmi Ogedegbe (right) practice their hands-on skills of complex splinting and immobilization after a fracture reduction.

Application Information

  • This certificate begins once per year with class starting in the fall 
  • Completed applications are considered on a rolling admissions basis until seats are full.
  • Nonrefundable application fee of $50
  • All official transcripts including undergraduate and MS in Nursing from regionally accredited institutions. Or, ARC-PA approved Physician Assistants program with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  • A current Advanced Practice Nursing Practitioner (APRN)  license or NCCPA license 
  • EssayDiscuss a practice problem in your field that, in your experience has a broad impact on patient care and outcomes; state professional goals for the next 5-10 years and explain how this degree will help you reach your goals. 
  • Two letters from professionals attesting to the candidate’s intellectual and leadership abilities to pursue graduate work at the University of Saint Joseph. Letters should be from supervisors or managers or academic faculty
  • A current Resume or CV
  • An interview with the graduate faculty prior to acceptance into the program
  • All immunization records as required by the University and Department of Nursing
  • Upon formal admission, a certified background check is required


The baccalaureate degree in nursing, master’s degree in nursing/Doctor of Nursing Practice program and post-graduate APRN certification at the University of Saint Joseph are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791. 


Office of Graduate Admissions
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 860.231.5216