As some of the top-paying nursing designations, Advance Practice Registered Nurses can all be called Nurse Practitioners, yet each type of APRN has a distinct role in the medical world. As the nursing profession evolves, the ability of an APRN to practice more specialized medicine is growing. Many states allow APRNs to practice without the supervision of a physician, while several more are currently considering allowing APRNs to practice medicine autonomously.
Advance Practice Nurses are encouraged to obtain a graduate-level education, such as a Master of Science in Nursing degree either through a campus-based or online nursing program. As of 2015, educational guidelines for APRNs are expected to require a MSN, through the recommendation of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.