Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program

The College of Nursing has designed a predominantly online post masters Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program for the nurse with a masters degree. The program of study is 39 credits and is designed for part time study. The DNP is providing the academic preparation for masters prepared nurses to acquire advanced knowledge biostatistics, cultural competency, epidemiology, and advancements in healthcare and education.

Due to state authorization requirements the College cannot accept applications from residents of the following states: Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Washington, Wisconsin.

Potential out of state applicants need to contact the Graduate Dean to determine state authorization eligibility regarding distance education.


Admission Categories

Unconditional:  Unconditional acceptance is given to all applicants who meet all the admission criteria and are approved by the Admission Committee of the Graduate Program.


Residency Requirements

Students enrolled in the 39 credit DNP program must earn a minimum of 30 semester credit hours from the College of Nursing to be eligible to receive their degree. All credits must be completed within five years of taking the first DNP course at the College.


How To Apply For Admission

  1. Please send the following to the Graduate Office:
    •     Non-refundable application fee of $50.00
    •     Application for Admission
    •     750-1000 word essay typed
    •     Copy of RN Licensure
    •     Copy of your Advanced Practice License (if applicable)
    •     Three letters of recommendation (see below)
  2. Please request that the registration office of all higher education institution that you have previously attended send an official transcript to the Graduate Office. Please note that we must receive an official transcript from every institution, even if transfer credit from that institution appears on the transcript of another institution.
  3. Complete a personal interview with a graduate nursing faculty member, if requested.
  4. When all of the above documentation has been received and evaluated, you will receive a letter from the College of Nursing confirming your admission status.


Admission Requirements Post Masters DNP:

  1. Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
  2. Earned Master's degree in nursing, from an accredited program or school. The masters should be in Advanced Practice such as, Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS), Nurse Practitioner (NP), anesthesia, or nurse midwife.
  3. The DNP-Leadership applicant must have a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a master’s degree in health administration, leadership, or other masters approved by the Dean of the Graduate Program or the Graduate Committee.
  4. Grade point average (GPA) of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale.
  5. Submission of a professional portfolio that includes:
    •     Statement of reason(s) for seeking the DNP.
    •     Curriculum vitae with publications listed (if applicable).
    •     Licensure to practice as a Registered Nurse and Advanced Practice Nurse in one or more states in the USA.
    •     Certification in an advanced practice specialty.
    •     Narrative description of current and past clinical practice or educational experience.
  6. Three letters of recommendation from persons who are able to speak to the applicant's ability to undertake doctoral study. (At least one from a former faculty or academic advisor and at least one from a former employer.)
  7. Transcripts must show completion of graduate level health assessment, pathophysiology, and Pharmacology as separate or integrated courses.
  8. Evidence of completion of a graduate statistics course with a minimum grade of "B" within the last five years.
  9. A graduate level statistics course within the past five years.
  10. A 750--1000 word typed essay outlining goals, objectives, and focused area of interest in pursuing the DNP.
  11. Evidence of one year professional nursing experience preferred.
  12. An interview will be required.



Essay Guidelines for Admission

This essay is an essential aspect of the admission process and will be carefully evaluated by the Graduate Program Committee in order to make a decision on your direct entry into the DNP program. Follow the guidelines carefully, speaking to each item listed below. The paper should be 500-1000 word essay. Evaluation of the essay will include assessment of:

  • Content
  • Clarity of presentation
  • Grammar, punctuation, etc.

Please address the following:

  • Describe your practice area, which includes your leadership and collaboration, ability to work with others.
  • Discuss your current professional role, your analytical thinking, and your synthesis of research findings into practice or educational methods.
  • Identify goals for your doctoral nursing education.
  • Describe how the attainment of your goals will advance your professional practice.



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