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Program at a Glance

College of Nursing
U.S News and World Report Best Grad Schools Doctor of Nursing Practice Badge

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program prepares nurses at the highest level of practice for the current health care environment based on a strong scientific foundation for practice; flexibility and emphasis on evidence-based practice, leadership, and organizational analysis; and analysis of the DNP Project.

Program Objectives

The objectives of the DNP program are to prepare graduates to:

  • Critically analyze complex clinical situations and practice systems and disseminate findings.
  • Assume leadership roles in the development of clinical practice models, health policy and standards of care.
  • Develop practice models that support diagnostic reasoning skills and clinical judgment through the use of the evidence-based practice.
  • Analyze the social, economic, political, epidemiological and other scientific data to improve individual, aggregate and population health.
  • Demonstrate information fluency and advanced communication skills to lead quality improvement initiatives to improve patient care and healthcare systems.
  • Design, implement, and evaluate comprehensive care models for populations and/or systems and disseminate findings.

For the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), total graduate credit must equal or exceed 72 credit hours. Students take 27 credit hours of core courses, 9 credit hours of electives, and 6 credit hours of a DNP Project. The total clinical hours (including those hours accrued in the MSN degree) will be 1000. The core courses have been carefully constructed to incorporate the AACN competencies for DNP graduates. Details about this program are located in the Nursing DNP Handbook.

Total Credit Hours Required: 72 Credit Hours Minimum beyond the Bachelor's Degree

Students will take course work that incorporates s The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice [American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), 2006] and Advanced- level Nursing Sub-competencies described in the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s The Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing education (AACN, 2021). The Doctoral Essentials address the following:

  1. Scientific underpinning for practice
  2. Organizational and systems leadership for quality improvement and systems thinking
  3. Clinical scholarship and analytical methods for evidence-based practice
  4. Information systems/technology and patient care technology for the improvement and transformation of health care
  5. Health care policy for advocacy in health care
  6. Inter-professional collaboration for improving patient and population health outcomes
  7. Clinical prevention and population health for improving the nation's health
  8. Advanced nursing practice

Please note: Nursing (DNP) - Advanced Practice may be completed fully online, although not all elective options or program prerequisites may be offered online. Newly admitted students choosing to complete this program exclusively via UCF online classes may enroll with a reduction in campus-based fees.

Application Deadlines

May 1
September 1
July 1
January 15

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University of Central Florida Colleges