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.
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.
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.
You may pursue this UCF College of Nursing online program as long as you will be physically located in a Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) state for the duration of your education.
UCF College of Nursing faculty is authorized to teach in NLC states. Due to nursing education restrictions imposed by non-NLC states, UCF is unable to offer courses, clinicals, or other educational services regardless of modality within non-NLC states. Should you be physically located within a non-NLC state for more than a vacation or brief visit, regardless of your legal state of residence or the type of license you have, you will be unable to apply or continue your nursing degree program at the UCF College of Nursing. This includes, but is not limited to, students accepting traveling nurse positions in a non-Nurse Licensure Compact state.
This program has potential ties to state-regulated professional licensure or certification in the field. For more information on how this program may prepare you in that regard, please visit https://apq.ucf.edu/files/Licensure-Disclosure-DNP-Online-Advanced-Practice-June2020.pdf
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 The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice [American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), 2006]. The Essentials address the following:
- Scientific underpinning for practice
- Organizational and systems leadership for quality improvement and systems thinking
- Clinical scholarship and analytical methods for evidence-based practice
- Information systems/technology and patient care technology for the improvement and transformation of health care
- Health care policy for advocacy in health care
- Inter-professional collaboration for improving patient and population health outcomes
- Clinical prevention and population health for improving the nation’s health
- Advanced nursing practice
DNP Core Courses—27 Credit Hours
The DNP core courses serve to enhance the skill and science base of the graduate and strengthen the focus on evidence-based practice. Safety and efficiency in health care systems is addressed and organizational and policy implications are emphasized within the context of care delivery. An emphasis is placed on evidence-based practice, state-of-the-art interventions and information fluency.
Restricted Electives—9 Credit Hours
- Restricted Electives 9 Credit Hours
DNP Project—6 Credit Hours
The DNP Project is the product of the culminating or comprehensive experience of an independent project that demonstrates application of advanced clinical and evidence-based practice. The DNP Project is guided and evaluated by an academic committee and is derived from the practice immersion experience (residency). It will serve as a foundation for future scholarly practice.
The DNP Project is related to advanced nursing practice and benefits a group, population or community rather than an individual patient. It addresses identified needs and builds on an evidence base. DNP projects may include but are not limited to:
- Translate research into practice and evaluate outcomes
- Quality improvement (care processes, continuity of care, patient outcomes)
- Implement and evaluate evidence-based practice guidelines
- Analyze policy: develop, implement, evaluate, or revise policy
- Design and use databases to retrieve information for decision making, planning, evaluation
- Conduct financial analyses to compare care models and potential cost savings, etc.
- Design and evaluate new models of care
- Design and evaluate health promotion and disease prevention programs
- Assess integration of technology in care
The theme that links these forms of scholarly experiences is the use of evidence to improve either practice or patient outcomes. Additional examples of DNP projects can be found on the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculty (NONPF) website under Practice Doctorate Resource Center.
Progress to Degree
Students are required to maintain a 3.0 grade point average. Grades below B are not acceptable in the doctoral program in the College of Nursing. Students who receive a grade of below B in any course are subject to dismissal from the DNP program and will be reviewed by the DNP Admissions, Progression and Graduation Committee for continuation in the program. Students who do not maintain a 3.0 GPA will be put on probation or dismissed from the program.
- All course work completed with a minimum grade of “B”
- A satisfactory DNP Project
- Clinical performance evaluated at a satisfactory level
- A satisfactory public presentation of the DNP Project
Full-time students in the Nursing Practice DNP program pay a $90 equipment fee each semester that they are enrolled. Part-time students pay $45 each semester.
A DNP Project will be completed by all students in the DNP program. A scholarly project, derived from clinical practice, will be developed in depth with faculty supervision.
For information on general UCF graduate admissions requirements that apply to all prospective students, please visit the Admissions section of the Graduate Catalog. Applicants must apply online. All requested materials must be submitted by the established deadline.
In addition to the general UCF graduate application requirements , applicants to this program must provide:
- One official transcript (in a sealed envelope) from each college/university attended.
- MSN degree in an APRN specialty role or a post-MSN certificate (NP, CNS, CRNA, CNM) from an accredited institution.
- Certification as an APRN or ability to obtain it in the first semester of enrollment is required.
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) licensure in the state in which you practice.
- Documentation of the number of clinical hours completed during master’s program. Acceptable documents are license exam application form or the attached.
- A personal interview may be required with two members of the College of Nursing Doctoral Committee.
- Address the following 3 items in a written essay. Responses to all 3 questions should not exceed 500 words, double-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, and 1-inch margins:
- Describe how earning a Doctor of Nursing Practice in the track to which you applied will help you achieve your personal and professional goals.
- Explain those personal and professional experiences that have helped prepare you for doctoral study and your readiness for doctoral study at this time.
- The final DNP project focuses on the implementation of an evidence-based change that impacts healthcare outcomes through direct or indirect care from a systems or population/aggregate focus. Describe an area of interest you believe could be improved through such a project.
- Curriculum Vitae which reflects prior education, recent clinical accomplishments, any recent scholarly work (publications and presentations), awards, additional certifications, and activities with professional organizations.
- Requires 3 professional recommendations
Before submitting your application, it is recommended that applicants call the College of Nursing Graduate Office at 407-823-2744 to schedule an appointment with a DNP adviser to discuss your goals for doctoral study. It is advantageous to discuss the program before writing the required essay because the essay must address your goals for doctoral-level preparation for advanced nursing practice.
Applicants applying to this program who have attended a college/university outside the United States must provide a course-by-course credential evaluation with GPA calculation. Credential evaluations are accepted from World Education Services (WES) or Josef Silny and Associates, Inc. only.
Upon admission to the program, student will be required to complete FDLE/FBI fingerprinting and certified background checks, and health screening. Students must be able to meet clinical partner background requirements to continue in the program.
Documentation of the number of clinical hours completed during master’s program will need to be submitted. Acceptable documents are your license exam application form completion of the Verification of Clinical Hours Form.
The College of Nursing uses a student information management system, LEAP*RN (Project Concert). This database houses information regarding plans of study, clinical placements, clinical hours, logs, and evaluation data to assist in maintaining standards required for CCNE accreditation, facilitate student progression, and enhance clinical tracking. Students will need to access LEAP*RN for clinical course requirements, course evaluations, and portfolios. Upon graduation, students will continue to have no-cost access to their information. All students will be responsible for a one-time subscription of $150 per degree program payable at https://secure.projectconcert.com/ucf and due prior to registering for first semester courses. If students register for courses prior to paying the subscription, a “hold” service indicator will be placed to prevent future enrollment and other progression functions.
|Advanced Practice DNP
|*Applicants who plan to enroll full time in a degree program and who wish to be considered for university fellowships or assistantships should apply by the Fall Priority date.
Graduate students may receive financial assistance through fellowships, assistantships, tuition support, or loans. For more information, see the College of Graduate Studies Funding website, which describes the types of financial assistance available at UCF and provides general guidance in planning your graduate finances. The Financial Information section of the Graduate Catalog is another key resource.
Fellowships are awarded based on academic merit to highly qualified students. They are paid to students through the Office of Student Financial Assistance, based on instructions provided by the College of Graduate Studies. Fellowships are given to support a student’s graduate study and do not have a work obligation. For more information, see UCF Graduate Fellowships, which includes descriptions of university fellowships and what you should do to be considered for a fellowship.