Doctor of Nursing Practice

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Development of the curriculum is structured by four broad areas of knowledge described in the AACN’s Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Practice Nursing (2006).  Acquisition of knowledge within the areas of Scientific/Physiologic Foundation for Advanced Evidence Based Practice; Leadership/Information Management; Practice Inquiry; and Advanced Specialty Practice, will be demonstrated by the student’s development of essential competencies.

Graduates of the program will:

  • Use appropriate theories and concepts to identify health-related phenomena of interest
  • Design and deliver interventions that can withstand scientific analysis
  • Evaluate healthcare delivery and nursing practices using sound evaluation principles
  • Use evaluation and other methods to account for quality of care and patient safety for focus populations
  • Critically appraise and/or use sources informing best evidence (i.e. epidemiology, statistics, health data, and/or methodologies)
  • Deliver and evaluate care processes and outcomes based on best evidence
  • Analyze and define critical choices among healthcare technologies and information systems toward the betterment of care processes and outcomes
  • Understand the dynamics of healthcare policy and financing at the organizational and national levels
  • Provide or assist in the leadership of collaborative, inter-professional teams in healthcare delivery

Admission Requirements

  • Current Ohio licensure as a registered nurse
  • An undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale (post-BSN applicants)
  • Post-master's applicants must have an earned master's degree from an accredited institution with a cumulative graduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Three letters of reference from individuals who can address the applicant's potential to succeed in the DNP program and who can attest to clinical expertise
  • A 300 word essay describing professional goals and reasons for seeking the particular specialty concentration
  • A pre-admission interview (by telephone or in person) with the concentration program director. The interview is used to establish a fit between the applicant's goals and the desired College of Nursing graduate concentration as recommended by the interviewer(s)

Application Deadline

Applications to the Professional Doctor of Nursing (DNP) program are accepted on a rolling basis.

Note: Only students holding the MSN are currently eligible to apply. The College of Nursing will begin accepting applications from students holding only the BSN in Fall 2012.


Additional Information

The University of Akron DNP program requires a minimum of 71 semester credit hours and 1,040 clinical hours for those students entering with a baccalaureate in nursing degree from an accreditated program. Post-Master’s entry requires: a) 37 credits of DNP core courses; b) 540 clinical practice hours; c) transfer from the student’s master’s in nursing program a minimum of 34 credits of nursing and advanced practice role-specific coursework, which includes 500 clinical hours (or is taken as a part of the DNP program).

Assistantship/Scholarship Information

All assistantships (and any fellowships) are awarded through the academic department. Students interested in obtaining an assistantship must apply. New students may indicate on their online application for admission that they would like to be considered for an assistantship. Current students must contact the academic department for application information. Each department may have different requirements for assistantship applicants, so all students should contact the academic department to determine these particular requirements. Only those students fully admitted to a master’s or doctoral degree-seeking program are eligible for a graduate assistantship. Students admitted as non-degree seeking or to a certificate program may not hold an assistantship.

Financial Aid Information

Paying for college is a vital part of the education process. It is important to be informed of the many sources of aid available. Student loans are available to degree-seeking graduate students. Information on student loans can be found through the Office of Student Financial Aid. The Office of Student Financial Aid is located in Simmons Hall.

Tuition and Fees

Current tuition and fees schedules can be found through the Office of Student Accounts.


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