Doctor of Nurse Practice

Chairperson: Lin Murphy
Professor: N. Crogan-Pomilla, S. Norwood
Associate Professor: N. Beckham, A. Dupler
Assistant Professors: D. Abendroth, M. Gorski, L. Miklush, L. Murphy, J. Ramirez, J. Tiedt
Senior Lecturer: D. Smith
Lecturers: S. Harrison, A. Hedger, K. Manion, J. Miller, B. Senger, L. Tochterman, N. Tucker

Introduction

The Department of Nursing offers a post-master's Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program, which is consistent with the mission of Gonzaga University and the overall mission of the Department of Nursing, which is to prepare nurses for leadership in the service of others. Graduates of Gonzaga's DNP program are prepared to engage in systems thinking to solve complex problems, translate evidence to improve health care practices and population health, lead quality improvement and change initiatives, and demonstrate effective intraprofessional collaboration.


This online program is available to registered nurses who have earned a master's degree in a nursing specialty area and want to advance their practice, such as nurse practitioners or nurses in leadership/management positions. The DNP courses are offered in a distance delivery format in fall, spring, and summer sessions.

Program Overview

The post-master's DNP requires the completion of a minimum of 30 credit hours. The total number of credits a student must take in order to complete degree requirements depends on the courses and practicum hours completed in the student's Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. If an applicant was not required to complete an Evidence-Based Practice course or a biostatistics or inferential statistics course during his or her master's program, these courses must be completed either prior to beginning the DNP program, or they can be taken at Gonzaga during the first semester of the DNP program. The number of practicum hours that each student must complete is individualized based on the number completed in the student's MSN program so that each student meets the required 1,000 practicum hours by program completion (including practicum hours from the student's MSN program). This means that a student may need to complete 36 or more total credits.

The program requires one on-campus immersion. The immersion takes place during the student's first semester. It is a 3-day orientation to the program and includes a discussion of expectations for practicum, the scholarly project, composition of the Scholarly Project Committee, Institutional Review Board requirements, the proposal defense, and an introduction to faculty and their specific research interests. The student has the option of presenting his or her proposal defense and final defense to faculty and students either in person or electronically.


Admission Requirements

Registered nurses who meet the following criteria are eligible to apply to the post-master's Doctor of Nursing Practice program:

1.    A master’s degree in nursing from a program accredited by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Students who will be completing a master’s degree during the semester when applications are due are also eligible to apply.
2.    A cumulative grade point average (GPA) from master’s-level nursing courses of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale. If the GPA is below a 3.3, the applicant must include a statement explaining why the GPA is lower than required.
3.    Official transcript posting MSN or MN degree with documentation of an Evidence Based Practice (EBP) course. If the student has not had an EBP course, he or she can still be fully admitted, but will be required to complete an EBP course during the first semester of DNP course work. Gonzaga offers this course and it is available online to DNP students.
4.    Official transcript of a 3-semester credit graduate-level inferential statistics or biostatistics course within the last 5 years with an earned grade of C or better. If the student has not had a statistics course, he or she can still be fully admitted, but will be required to complete a statistics course during the first semester of DNP course work. Gonzaga offers this course and it is available online to DNP students.
5.    Verification form documenting supervised practicum hours earned in a master’s program (from graduate program unless the hours can be determined from the transcript).
6.    An unencumbered RN license from the state where practicum courses will be completed.
7.    Curriculum vitae (CV).
8.    Three letters of recommendations.
    a.    One must be from a colleague/supervisor who is able to evaluate current competency in nursing and the candidate’s potential for nursing practice at the most advanced level.
    b.    One must be from a former college/university nursing professor who can attest to the candidate’s potential for academic success in a doctoral program.
    c.    One additional letter of recommendation from a colleague, supervisor, or professor.
9.    A personal statement that addresses:
    a.    Reasons for pursuing a DNP and how Gonzaga University’s DNP program will prepare the candidate to meet his or her professional goals.
    b.    Experiences that have been most relevant in preparing the candidate to meet the expectations of a DNP program
    c.    Ideas for a scholarly change project and reasons why this project is important.
10.    An interview via phone or Skype may be requested.
11.    Miller Analogies test (MAT) or Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) - completed within the last five years.
12.    Petition for transfer of credits from another doctoral program with accompanying syllabus or course description and official transcripts - students may transfer up to 6 credits from an accredited doctoral program (if applicable)
13.    In addition, Nurse Practitioner applicants must provide documentation of:
      a.    Unencumbered license as an advanced practice nurse (APN) in the state where practicum courses will be completed.
      b.    Certification in the area of specialization.

Degree Requirements

The DNP program requires a minimum of 30 semester credits.

NURS 553 Evidence-Based Practice (if not taken in master’s degree program) 3 credits
NURS 708 Inferential Statistics (if not taken within previous 5 years) 3 credits
NURS 700 Theoretical Foundations for Doctor of Nursing Practice 3 credits
NURS 710
Population-Focused Care 3 credits
NURS 720 Evidence Synthesis for Practice 3 credits
NURS 730
Clinical Program Development, Implementation, and Evaluation 3 credits
NURS 740 Quality Improvement, Information Management, and Leadership in Health Care 3 credits
NURS 750 Health Policy and Advocacy 3 credits
NURS 761 Integrative Application of Evidence for Advanced Practice Seminar I 2 credits
NURS 762 Integrative Application of Evidence for Advanced Practice Seminar II 2 credits
NURS 763 Integrative Application of Evidence for Advanced Practice Seminar III 1 credit
NURS 764 Integrative Application of Evidence for Advanced Practice Seminar IV 1 credit
NURS 701 DNP Practicum I: Application of Evidence-Based Practice 1-3 credits
NURS 702 DNP Practicum II:  Application of Evidence-Based Practice 1-3 credits
NURS 703 DNP Practicum III:  Application of Evidence-Based Practice 1-3 credits
NURS 704 DNP Practicum IV:  Application of Evidence-Based Practice 1-3 credits