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University of Colorado College of Nursing

College of Nursing


Master's Specialties


The nurse-midwifery option prepares the graduate to provide safe, competent and satisfying care to women and their families during the childbearing years, as well as primary care health issues across the life span. This includes prenatal care, attendance at births, well woman care, family planning, normal newborn care, peri and menopausal care, treatment and diagnosis of common health problems.

The nurse-midwifery option is accredited by the American College of Nurse-Midwives through June, 2017.

American College of Nurse-Midwives
Accreditation Council for Midwifery Education
8403 Colesville Road, Suite 1150
Silver Spring, MD 20910
(240) 485-1500

A post-graduate certificate is available in this specialty.  Please see the overview of the post-graduate certificate.

Gainful Employment and Program Statistics for Post-Master's Certificate
For more information regarding graduation rates, the median debt of students completing our certificate programs and other important information, please visit the University of Colorado Denver Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness. ​

Program Plan

This specialty is designed to meet the educational and clinical competency requirements for professional certification by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB), as well as the requirements for a master of science degree. Certified nurse-midwives are placed on the Advanced Practice Registry in Colorado.

Master of Science in Nursing Core Courses
Advanced Practice Core Courses Required for Specialty Option
Advanced Practice Nursing: Nurse-Midwifery
Course Title Credits
NURS 6755-58: Advanced Practicum 14
NURS 6113: Studies In Health Promotion & Lifestyle 2
NURS 6477: Primary Health Care of Children: Well Child Care (Newborn credit) 1
NURS 6847: Primary Care of Women 2
NURS 6372: Care During Pregnancy and Birth 3
NURS 6352: Care of the High Risk Pregnancy 2
NURS 6343: Women’s Gynecologic Health Care 1
Minimum Specialty Total 26
Total Credits for NMW


The specialty program plan outlines the courses that are offered for the nurse-midwifery program.


Graduate nurse-midwifery education promotes leadership, advocacy and academic excellence toward improving the health of women and families worldwide based on a broad foundation in the arts, sciences and humanities.

Upon completion of the nursing program, students will be prepared to incorporate pertinent knowledge, values and abilities for direct and indirect provider roles to

  • Implement caring and competent nursing practice with individuals, families and communities based on understanding the human experiences of health, illness and healing.
  • Integrate the ethical use of technology and information systems to augment the human capacity for health, facilitate decision-making, support collaboration and foster communication.
  • Promote health of local to global communities through promoting safe environments and safe and effective health care addressing the interaction among individuals, communities and their environmental contexts.
  • Manage care to achieve quality, cost-effective and ethical outcomes in the delivery of health care for individuals, families and populations.
  • Engage in leadership to promote social justice related to access, quality and socio-cultural acceptability of health care through relationship-centered caring, advocacy and empowerment.
  • Negotiate and adapt the delivery and management of health care and health care systems for diverse populations and environments.
  • Practice relationship-centered caring through self-awareness, by developing and maintaining respectful relationships, communicating effectively, and integrating the influence of the human experience of health, illness and healing.
  • Practice nursing reflectively, guided by theory, based on best evidence and integrating creative and critical thinking.
  • Participate in generating and testing knowledge regarding nursing, health care and reflective caring practice.
  • Actively engage in self-directed learning to maintain state of the art nursing practice and to facilitate the education of future practitioners, paraprofessionals and healthy communities.


We have a cadre of extremely well-qualified faculty and associates who teach, conduct research and serve as preceptors and mentors for our students. Our faculty are located in Colorado and across the United States. Our faculty are extremely committed to the discipline of nurse-midwifery and serve on many national and international boards, and they are leaders in several professional organizations. Please take a look at the experts in nurse-midwifery that are part of our master’s program.

The University Hospital has two nurse-midwifery faculty practices, the University Nurse-Midwives and the Center for Midwifery. Both practices see women and their families at the University of Colorado on the Anschutz Medical Campus in the Anschutz Outpatient and Inpatient Pavilions. For more information, visit the University Hospital website.

Nancy Lowe, CNM, PhD
Professor, Chair of Women's Children's & Families Health

Erica Schwartz, DNP, CNM
Faculty Practices


How long will it take to complete the nurse midwifery program?
Will I be required to do any clinical experiences?
Is the NMW program offered completely online or in class?
Will I have to do the clinical in Colorado?
Will this program prepare me to sit for the AMCB certification?
Can I take a course before I apply?
Are there other options for persons who do not have a BS in nursing or BSN?
Are there any expectations outside of the classroom?
Can I talk to a graduate of your program?
Where do graduates of your program work?
What types of jobs are currently available for certified nurse midwives?


University of Colorado College of Nursing Nurse-Midwifery Philosophy

Students learn in an institutional environment that values diversity and promotes diverse viewpoints and perspectives. Knowledge and skills required for professional nurse-midwifery education are acquired through evidence-based practice based on applied and basic research, relationship-centered care, holistic philosophies, and the ethical delivery of healthcare for women and their families across the lifespan.


Students learn to develop compassionate, culturally sensitive partnerships with women and their families while caring for diverse patient populations in a variety of environments.  Students learn to support individualistic ideals of health and healing through the art of being present; the science of applying research; and the ethical principles of respecting self-determination in health care decisions made by women and their families.   Managing ethical, cost-effective healthcare for women across the lifespan is afforded students as they advocate for social justice initiatives.


Students bring individual experiences, talents and skills.  From an educational perspective, these are potentials to be recognized and strengths to be developed.  The learning environment emphasizes respect for the dignity and worth of each student’s individuality, their learning needs and learning style. Reflective practice is encouraged and guided by theory based on the best evidence available supporting life-long learning. 
The practice of nurse-midwifery is based on the Core Competencies for Basic Midwifery Practice, The Standards for the Practice of Nurse-Midwifery and the Code of Ethics as promulgated by the American College of Nurse-Midwives. Students learn the nurse-midwifery management process through the application of scientific research and the teachings of nurse-midwifery mentors who are not only expert in the subject matter they teach, but also in the art and science of adult professional education.  The normalcy of the woman’s life cycle is promoted. Teaching/learning occurs best within an interdisciplinary health care team setting. A core level of safe, competent practice must be achieved prior to completion of the graduate nurse-midwifery educational option specialty.
Replaces NMW Option Philosophy 1998, 2004