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Clinical Nurse Specialist Major

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Clinical Nurse Specialist

15 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
380 Master's Degrees Annually
#12 in Popularity
$75,510 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many clinical nurse specialist graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Master’s Degree 380
Graduate Certificate 24
Bachelor’s Degree 15
Doctor’s Degree 9

What Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors Need to Know

In an O*NET survey, clinical nurse specialist majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.

Knowledge Areas for Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

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  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

Skills for Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors

A major in clinical nurse specialist prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

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  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Abilities for Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors

Some of the most crucial abilities to master while a clinical nurse specialist student include the following:

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  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

What Can You Do With a Clinical Nurse Specialist Major?

People with a clinical nurse specialist degree often go into the following careers:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Clinical Nurse Specialists 14.8% $71,730
Nursing Instructors and Professors 24.0% $73,490
Registered Nurses 14.8% $71,730

Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Clinical Nurse Specialist?

15 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
93% Percent Women
27% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This major is dominated by women with about 93% of recent graduates being female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of clinical nurse specialist majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Clinical Nurse Specialist Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 0
Black or African American 3
Hispanic or Latino 0
White 8
International Students 1
Other Races/Ethnicities 3

Geographic Diversity

Clinical Nurse Specialist appeals to people across the globe. About 6.7% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Clinical Nurse Specialist Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Clinical Nurse Specialist majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $75,510 to $81,350 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Clinical Nurse Specialist Major  ( 75510 to 81350 )
0K
250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
0K
250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some degrees associated with clinical nurse specialist may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

Find out what the typical degree level is for clinical nurse specialist careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Some College Courses 4.2%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 26.3%
Bachelor’s Degree 11.0%
Master’s Degree 41.4%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 2.8%
Doctoral Degree 13.5%
Post-Doctoral Training 2.3%

Online Clinical Nurse Specialist Programs

In the 2018-2019 academic year, 47 schools offered some type of clinical nurse specialist program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 1 0
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 0 0
Bachelor’s Degree 2 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 31 3
Post-Master’s 22 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 2 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 5 2
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 1 1

Is a Degree in Clinical Nurse Specialist Worth It?

The median salary for a clinical nurse specialist grad is $75,510 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 89% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $712,200 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to clinical nurse specialist.

Major Number of Grads
Registered Nursing 251,279
Family Practice Nurse/Nursing 15,536
Nursing Administration 9,071
Other Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing 6,319
Nursing Practice 6,250
Nursing Science 4,704
Nurse Anesthetist 2,031
Adult Health Nurse/Nursing 2,012
Nursing Education 1,991
Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse/Nursing 1,266
Public Health/Community Nurse/Nursing 1,022
Critical Care Nursing 643
Clinical Nurse Leader 527
School Nursing 523
Nurse Midwife/Nursing Midwifery 475
Geriatric Nurse/Nursing 464
Perioperative/Operating Room and Surgical Nurse/Nursing 236
Maternal/Child Health and Neonatal Nurse/Nursing 211
Emergency Room/Trauma Nursing 37
Occupational and Environmental Health Nursing 35
Palliative Care Nursing 23

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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