Post Baccalaureate - DNP - FAQs

You will graduate from Gonzaga University's Post-Baccalaureate Doctor of Nursing Practice program practice-ready, rigorously trained and as a leader poised to influence positive change.

You will find answers to our most frequently asked questions below.

For Additional Questions: 

Contact: Ethan Lewan
Call or Text (509) 313-6243 or (866) 380-5323

General Questions

Gonzaga is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). The baccalaureate, MSN and DNP programs at Gonzaga University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 887-6791.

Yes, by accelerating your career and starting the Post-Bacc DNP now, you have the following advantages:

  • Gaining clinical experience while obtaining your advanced-practice degree
  • Obtaining your terminal degree in 5 years
  • Realizing the return on your investment sooner by entering the workforce at a higher level of pay
  • Being prepared to meet the growing demand for doctorate-prepared practitioners

The DNP Program strives to prepare you to:

  • Be eligible to sit for your nurse practitioner licensing exam at the end of your third year
  • Provide exceptional 1:1 care while having the skills to positively impact communities
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge and skills to optimize health in a selected area of nursing
  • Demonstrate humanistic, reflective practice, ethical reasoning and advocacy for a selected population
  • Synthesize theory and evidence to create, implement and evaluate strategies to improve practice
The program is usually completed in 6 years. The MSN coursework takes 9 semesters (3 years) of study. The DNP portion takes 7 semesters of study over 3 years (students typically have two summer terms without classes).

Post-bacc DNP students have 5 years to complete their MSN, and 5 years to complete their DNP. They may also take a two year (6 semester) break between finishing their MSN and starting their DNP without needing to reapply.

Yes, our program is designed for working professionals and the majority of students are able to continue working as they attend full-time.  However faculty highly recommends that you work part-time (maximum of 20 hours a week), once clinical hours begin. You will have the flexibility to adjust your progression plans.
Yes, you will earn an MSN, typically at the end of your third year of study. The final degree will be a Doctor of Nursing Practice. You can sit for the NP boards for your NP licensure upon the conferral of your MSN.
In addition to tuition and books, please visit this page to see a full list of fees for this program.
You may transfer up to 15 credits to apply toward the completion of the DNP program. Transfer credits must be earned through graduate level courses that are not part of a conferred degree and are accepted at the discretion of faculty.
Graduates of the DNP program can request a verification of education (VOE) letter by emailing
We are happy to complete verification of education (VOE) forms throughout your career.  Please email: with your request.

The Course Experience

You will take a mix of 8 week and 16 week courses (Spring, Summer, Fall). Classes are either full semester (16 weeks in the Fall and Spring, 12 weeks in the Summer) or broken into an 8 week course during either the first or second half of the 16 week semesters.
The Post-Bacc DNP program does not use a cohort model, except during your DNP project courses. The program allows you the flexibility to alter your progression plan as long as you complete degree requirements within 7 years.

Yes, the program requires you to travel to Spokane, WA for on-campus weekend immersions which vary by track.

  • PMHNP track requires 7 immersions.
  • FNP track requires 8 immersions.
  • Immersions occur between your fifth and twelfth semesters of study. You average one immersion per semester during this period.
You will participate in the culminating Observed Structured Clinical Evaluations or OSCEs - a cornerstone for student success. In these structured scenarios, you obtain a focused history and complete a focused exam of a scripted model patient, identify differential diagnoses and the most likely diagnosis, and determine a plan of care based on the most likely diagnosis. The OSCEs are led by practicing faculty who bring real-world scenarios and practical advice to life for the student.
Yes, a graduate-level statistics class is required for the Post-Bacc DNP program. The statistics requirement is not a prerequisite to apply; rather, it is a class included in each student's progression plan.
The DNP project allows you to demonstrate mastery of DNP curriculum content. You learn to utilize evidence to improve an area of clinical or leadership practice in relation to a designated population. You will refine the idea for the project in the first practicum course, NURS 701. In the second practicum course, NURS 703, you designs the project and presents an oral defense. You implement it in the third practicum course and complete the evaluation in NURS 704. You are also expected to give an oral presentation and final defense of the project before your DNP project team. Some examples of possible DNP projects include a practice change initiative, a pilot study, a program evaluation, a quality improvement project, or an evaluation of a new practice model.
The team is comprised of a minimum of two doctorally-prepared Gonzaga nursing faculty, one of whom functions as the faculty mentor. An optional third member of the team may be a non-faculty expert in the area of study.

The Student Services team is available to answer questions and connect students to the resources needed.  Students are also assigned a faculty advisor to help meet their academic goals.

Online students have access to all of Gonzaga's resources including:

  • Foley Library
  • IT Help Desk
  • Career Center
  • Graduate Student Council
  • Disability Access
  • University Ministry

We are all here to help you succeed.


Practicum Requirements

We are committed to ensuring adequate and robust practicum experiences for our graduate students. Clinical placements are secured through a process shared by staff, program directors, students, faculty and clinical agencies.

Our Clinical Placement Team is dedicated to helping students secure sites and preceptors, as well as with processing contract/legal documentation required to clear students for clinical placement.

As an initial step in the process, students will proactively engage with their local providers to identify potential preceptors. The Clinical Placement Team will work with students to finalize clinical placements and preceptor experiences to meet course requirements.

The Department of Nursing maintains affiliation agreements with many facilities and providers across the western U.S. to support practicum learning experiences.

Students are responsible for their own transportation to clinical sites and should include this cost when calculating and planning for their educational expenses and scheduling demands.

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing requires the completion of a minimum of 1,000 hours of practicum experience spanning a Post-Bacc DNP.
You may complete practicum hours at your organization. However, you cannot complete practicum hours in the area of the organization where you are employed or during time on the job when being paid. Your preceptor cannot be a direct supervisor.  Faculty encourage you to seek out practicum experiences outside their organizations.

Tuition & Scholarships

The cost is competitive at $1,140* per credit.

*Tuition rates are subject to change.

We have a number of resources to help you fund your education.  As a graduate student you qualify for Federal Student Aid. This funding is not need based, follow the link to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Gonzaga also offers payment plan options and other financial resources.

The School of Health Sciences offers scholarships every semester, funds permitting.

Gonzaga's Financial Aid Office maintains a database of scholarships for students to access, search and apply for awards.

Program information subject to change.