Clinical Nurse Specialists

Clinical Nurse Specialist Speaks with a Patient

Clinical nurse specialists (CNSs), a classification of advanced practice nurses (APNs), are registered nurses who have completed advanced clinical nurses' educational practice requirements. Qualified to handle a wide variety of physical and mental health problems, CNSs are primarily involved in providing primary health care and psychotherapy. More than 2.6 million registered nurses, which includes clinical nurse specialists, are employed in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs)
Duties Utilize their advanced nursing education to help patients make the best use of health care services
Salary Range $75,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Nationwide; most opportunities available in large, metropolitan areas
Minimum Education Level
  • Master's Degree
School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Health
Experience Internships and clinical rotations
Personality Traits
  • Helpful
  • Organized
  • Technical
  • Leadership
  • Organizational
  • Scientific
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Good
Advancement Prospects Good
Outlook Faster than the Average
Career Ladder
  • Nursing Professor or Nurse Practitioner
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Registered Nurse

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