U.S. News ranks 11 WKU graduate programs among nation's best
- WKU News
- Monday, May 1st, 2023
Eleven Western Kentucky University graduate programs have been ranked among the best in the country in U.S. News and World Report’s 2023-2024 Best Graduate Schools rankings.
WKU’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program was tied No. 106 in the nation. The program is designed to prepare nurses who are already working in the field to become leaders in nursing practice and administration. The program has two tracks: Family Nurse Practitioner and Nurse Executive. Students can pursue the degree on either a part-time or full-time basis.
The Nursing Master of Science (MSN) graduate program at WKU was ranked No. 113. The College of Health and Human Services offers a Master of Science in Nursing that builds upon the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and seeks to develop expertise in advanced nursing practice. The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (MSNS) concentration is for individuals who wish to be certified as Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners. The innovative MSN-Master’s Entry Professional Nursing (MEPN) allows a student with a previous baccalaureate degree in a field other than nursing to obtain an MSN degree and become eligible for licensure as a registered nurse.
WKU’s education graduate program was ranked No. 120. The College of Education and Behavioral Sciences is home to WKU’s nationally recognized clinical preparation programs which focus on the community’s future teachers, counselors, psychologists, and leaders. Graduate degrees, including those at the master’s and doctoral level, are offered in Advanced Teacher Education, Counseling and Student Affairs, Educational Leadership, Gifted Education and Talent Development, Instructional Design, Literacy Education, Organizational Leadership, Psychology, Special Education, and Teacher Education.
WKU’s Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) was ranked No. 137. The DPT Program is designed to prepare students to plan and administer treatment to help patients regain diminished physical function lost secondary to injury or disease, to promote soft tissue healing, and to relieve pain. The mission of the WKU Doctor of Physical Therapy program is to prepare physical therapists who improve the quality of life of their patients and clients, especially in rural and underserved communities.
U.S. News ranked WKU’s Master of Social Work (MSW) No. 140 in the nation. The program at WKU is available to working professionals as well as recent college graduates and prepares them for a career as social work practitioners in a variety of contexts, including individual, family, group, organizations, and community. The program emphasizes professional and scholarly service to the community, state, and nation.
Also making the list was WKU’s Master of Public Health (MPH), which was ranked No. 150 in the country. The program is part of a field that seeks to protect and improve the health of families and communities through the promotion of healthy lifestyles, research for disease and injury prevention, and detection and control of infectious disease. WKU’s MPH degree prepares students for a wide range of health-related professions.
U.S. News ranked WKU’s programs in Public Affairs at No. 182. The Potter College of Arts & Letters (PCAL) is home to WKU’s nationally recognized Master of Public Administration (MPA) program. The MPA program prepares graduate students for a variety of leadership positions in federal, non-profit, local, and state organizations.
WKU’s Speech-Language Pathology Program was ranked No. 189. The speech-language pathology program is accredited by the Council of Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech Language Pathology. This program is designed to prepare speech-language pathologists to meet the needs of those presenting with communication delays, differences, and/or disorders in a range of settings including hospitals, clinics, skilled nursing facilities, or schools. Graduates will meet the academic and clinical requirements of the American Speech Language and Hearing Association, leading to national certification and state licensure.
WKU’s Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) program (part-time) was ranked No. 230. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) provides a professional graduate education that prepares graduates for successful business and organizational leadership careers. In addition, the MBA program was named among the Best Business Schools.
Rounding out the U.S. News list is the Master’s in Psychology Program that was ranked No. 251. This program prepares students to pursue careers in clinical psychology and/or to enter a doctoral program. M.A. graduates are eligible in Kentucky for licensure as Psychological Associates.
Dr. Robert “Bud” Fischer, WKU’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, said: “The university is proud to be recognized for its outstanding online graduate degree programs. These rankings are the product of much hard work and commitment by our faculty and staff to provide the very best learning experience for our online students while ensuring our degrees will elevate them in their careers or open new opportunities in the future.”
Dr. Ranjit Koodali, WKU’s Associate Provost for Research and Graduate Education, noted that the increase from six to 11 graduate programs in this year’s rankings is a reflection of the exceptional quality of instruction provided by dedicated faculty and strong commitment from leadership at multiple levels across campus toward the success of graduate students.
The Best Graduate Schools rankings are based on survey data gathered from academic professionals nationwide, as well as statistical indicators that measure the quality of a school’s faculty, research, and students. The 2023-24 rankings were released April 25.
Contact: Jace Lux, (270) 745-4295
Western Kentucky University prides itself on positioning its students, faculty and staff for long term success. As a student-centered, applied research university, WKU helps students expand on classroom learning by integrating education with real-world applications in the communities we serve. Our hilltop campus is located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, which was recently named by Reader’s Digest as one of the nicest towns in America, just an hour’s drive from Nashville, Tennessee.
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