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Doctor of Nursing Practice


The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) provides two pathways, MSN-DNP and BSN-DNP, for prepared nurses to continue formal education and access a program targeted to the needs of their practice area. Building on the master’s program curriculum, the DNP is designed as a professional (practice) doctorate integrating evidence-based practice, quality improvement, and systems leadership to prepare experts in specialized advanced nursing practice. The DNP is targeted to nurses seeking a terminal degree in nursing practice. The program will include course and clinical work (fieldwork) comprising a capstone project of three practicum courses that addresses a high priority area of practice. A concentration in one of three areas is required for the BSN-DNP pathway track.


Planning is underway to transition the curriculum to address the newest version of the AACN The Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing Education.

1. Advanced Clinical Practice

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will practice both independently and interdependently based on scientific underpinnings that focus on systematic transformation of the delivery of health care.

2. Evidence-Based Practice

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will critically analyze, translate, and synthesize data to develop new practice guidelines and systems of care which are based on theory, research, and practice.

3. Transformational Leadership

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will effectively lead by integrating leadership and management principles to initiate change at the organization/system level which includes strategies that create, sustain, and maintain balance in access, quality, and cost.

4. Professionalism/Ethics

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will appraise aspects of global health care issues in order to lead, organize, and formulate approaches to care that address emerging practice problems related to ethical dilemmas as evolving therapeutic technology and standards of practice.

5. Quality Improvement and Safety

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will promote a culture of quality and safety through commitment to utilize evidence for the advancement of research findings in processes and practices that create patient centered change.

6. Health Care Informatics

Demonstrate the ability for decision making in the use of information systems/technology resources related to ethical, regulatory, and legal issues to support practice.

7. Health Policy and Advocacy

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will assess the interdependence of the foundations of health care policy (considering the political process, finance and regulations) to engage and lead others toward designing, implementing, advocating, and evaluating social justice and equity in access of quality health care.

8. Inter-professional Collaboration

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will establish, participate, and facilitate the overall effectiveness of collaborative, interprofessional teams to engage in quality health care practice which identifies nursing’s contribution.

9. Transcultural Care

The Doctorate of Nursing Practice graduate will integrate the impact of bio-, psycho-, socio-cultural health beliefs and practices on health promotion and disease prevention to develop and implement positive health practices of diverse populations in a global environment.