How to Become an APRN in Missouri

Missouri APRN and patient
Missouri APRN and patient

Registered nurses (RNs) in Missouri have a timely opportunity to advance their nursing education and transition into an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) role with a favorable job outlook. If you are a current RN looking to expand your professional career, this blog is for you.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, Missouri ranked fifth in the country for states with the highest concentration of nurse practitioner (NP) jobs in May 2022, and the demand for nurses is anticipated to remain steadfast. Statistics revealed the average salary for a Missouri NP as approximately $113,180 annually with the greatest employment in the southeast Missouri nonmetropolitan area and cities such as:

  • Kansas City, MO-KS
  • Springfield, MO
  • Louis, MO-IL

The growing demand for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) in Missouri includes NP, nurse anesthetist, and nurse midwife jobs, with a projected employment increase of approximately 123,600 additional positions between 2022 and 2032. The anticipated growth in APRN employment is currently trending faster than average with an increase of 38% expected in the decade.

Read on to learn the step-by-step process for how to become an APRN in Missouri.

Educational Requirements for Becoming an APRN

A prerequisite for any APRN position is for a nurse to first hold a current RN license. This can be accomplished by completing a Bachelor of Science in nursing (BSN) degree or an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) followed by successful completion of the NCLEX examination. An RN-BSN program can take nurses the rest of the way through the prerequisite education for entry into a graduate program to become an APRN. Some nursing programs require work experience as a BSN-prepared nurse before admission while others work with students to meet their individual needs.

Nurse practitioner programs in Missouri prepare graduates through didactic coursework and the clinical experience necessary to earn an APRN degree and attain licensure to practice in the state. Education may be delivered in online or in-person formats, and students graduate with a degree such as the Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner (MSN-FNP).

There are different types of APRN specialty areas with corresponding educational curricula tailored to the distinct population of interest. Each program prepares graduates to gain national certification in their chosen specialty area and practice within the Missouri APRN scope of practice appropriate for the credential earned, such as:

  • Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM)
  • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA)
  • Certified Nurse Practitioner (CNP)
  • Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)

Within the scope of NP practice, different certifications and corresponding examinations are dependent on the chosen specialty area. These certifications include designations offered by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board (AANPCB) and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). To become certified in a specialty, a candidate must take and pass the certification exam issued by the organization offering the credential.

The next step in the process of becoming a Missouri APRN is to gain and maintain a state license to practice. Next, let’s explore some of the state-specific requirements for licensure that the Missouri Board of Nursing sets forth.

State-Specific APRN Licensure Requirements

To practice as an APRN in Missouri, the Board of Nursing requires recognition of APRN status. Instead of issuing APRN licensure, the Missouri Board of Nursing issues recognition of APRN status. The APRN recognition application in Missouri contains important information on obtaining this status to practice in the state. The details are outlined below.

General Requirements for APRN Recognition in Missouri

Applicants for APRN recognition must have a current Missouri RN or multistate (compact) license and current national certification in an APRN population area of focus. The Missouri Board of Nursing specifies which national certification programs are acceptable to meet this requirement to achieve a Missouri document of APRN recognition.

Enrollment for Notification of APRN Recognition

The Missouri Board of Nursing requires that applicants enroll to receive electronic notifications from Nursys® instead of a physical APRN recognition or licensure card. This system also provides electronic licensure renewal reminders when it is time for an APRN recognized in Missouri to renew the recognition to practice in the state.

Complete Application Steps

Another essential requirement for APRN recognition in Missouri is to have the application fully completed, signed, and notarized before submission to the Board for review. This includes:

  • Mailing the application in hard copy to the physical Missouri Board of Nursing office (electronic applications are not accepted)
  • An accompanying $150 nonrefundable application fee
  • Supporting documentation and forms including proof of national APRN certification

Once APRN recognition is earned, the NP is ready to consider collaborative practice and prescriptive authority in alignment with the scope of practice and anticipated job duties.

Collaborative Practice and APRN Prescriptive Authority

Missouri regulates and requires collaborative practice between physicians and APRNs in the state but does not require APRNs to provide the Board of Nursing with a copy of their collaborative practice agreement. The prescriptive authority of an APRN is dependent on the details of the collaborative practice agreement, and certification to prescribe controlled substances is required for this type of practice.

Professional nursing associations in Missouri help promote collaboration among Missouri APRNs and offer helpful resources such as:

  • Continuing education and training
  • Election of Missouri nurse representatives for political action
  • Well-being and mental health initiatives
  • Events for professional networking

As you consider the potential advanced nursing degree paths for becoming an APRN in Missouri, a benefit of online education is the vast network of student colleagues and faculty mentors that come together for quality APRN education. Online education allows the possibility of earning your degree while continuing to work and gain clinical experience in your community.

Become a Nurse Practitioner at Rockhurst University

Rockhurst University offers several online nursing programs for an affordable and efficient pathway to becoming an APRN in Missouri. The online FNP program is specifically designed for RNs with a BSN looking to care for patients of all ages.

Program features include:

  • 100% online coursework with clinical placement services and preceptor matching in your region
  • Flexible part-time and full-time options to accommodate busy nurses
  • An exciting on-campus immersion at Rockhurst University’s start-of-the-art facility in Kansas City
  • Preparation for the AANPCB or ANCC FNP certification exam

Learn more about Rockhurst University’s online MSN-FNP program today.

About Rockhurst University's Online Programs

In the heart of Kansas City since 1910, Rockhurst University is dedicated to learning, leadership and service in the Jesuit tradition, and today is the #1 Regional University in Kansas City (2021 U.S. News and World Report).

Rockhurst University’s online programs are delivered by the highly reputable Saint Luke’s ™ College of Nursing and Health Sciences and the School of Education. As an educational leader serving exceptional students in the field of health care and education, we are committed to preparing the workforce of tomorrow with our unique programs designed to prepare graduates to meet the needs of diverse populations and work in various organizations.

To learn more about our highly competitive online programs, please visit, or read more here: