Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) has called for moving the level of preparation necessary for advanced nursing practice roles (nurse practitioners, nurse midwives and clinical nurse specialists) from the master's degree to the doctorate degree by the year 2015. The University of Utah College of Nursing has met this goal and now offers advanced practice nursing programs as a DNP degree. The DNP curricula build on previous the Master of Nursing program by providing education in evidence-based practice, quality improvement, health care systems, leadership and health care policy. The DNP program prepare nurses for the highest level of practice in nursing.

For the Doctor of Nursing Practice program, the College of Nursing prepares students for advanced nursing roles in the following tracks: Certified Nurse Midwifery, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practioner, Women's Health Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, and Adult/Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner.

Expected Learning Outcomes:

* Integrate nursing science with knowledge from ethics, the biophysical, psychosocial, analytical, and organizational sciences to provide the basis for advanced nursing practice.

* Provide, manage and evaluate care of individuals and populations using evidence-based concepts related to physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology, as well as community, environmental, cultural and socioeconomic dimensions of health.

* Demonstrate advanced levels of clinical judgment and decision-making, systems thinking, and accountability in designing, delivering, and evaluating evidence-based care.

* Develop and evaluate initiatives that will improve the quality of care delivery

* Analyze and communicate critical elements necessary to the selection, use, and evaluation of healthcare information systems and patient care technology.

* Actively engage in interdisciplinary collaborations aimed at improving healthcare delivery, care coordination, and policy.

* Demonstrate professionalism, value lifelong learning and recognize the need to adapt practice to changing social, political, and global healthcare environments.

Specialty Areas:

Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (A/GCNP)

Acute care nurse practitioners play a vital leadership role in managing patients with complex acute and chronic health conditions in acute care settings.

Adult/Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (A/GPCNP)

Family Nurse Practitioners provide comprehensive health care to adults and older adults. 

Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM)

Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM) take on leadership roles providing women with primary healthcare before, during, and after pregnancy.

Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)

Family Nurse Practitioners provide comprehensive primary health care to individuals and families throughout the lifespan.  

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (NNP)

Neonatal nurse practitioners provide comprehensive care to high-risk newborn infants and their families in the neonatal intensive care unit.

Post- Master of Science to Doctor of Nursing Practice (Post-MS to DNP)

For RNs with a Master of Science Degree and APRNs (nurse practitioners, nurse midwives and clinical nurse specialists) with a Master’s degree, the College of Nursing offers a 5-semester Post-MS to DNP degree program in an executive course format.

Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Psychiatric/mental health nurse practitioners provide psychiatric assessment, mental health diagnoses, comprehensive treatment planning, and psychotherapy with individuals, groups and families across the lifespan.

Women's Health Nurse Practitioner (WHNP)

Women's Health Nurse Practitioner (WHNP) take on leadership roles as primary care providers for women throughout the lifespan.

Distance Delivery

For geographically eligble students, the following specialty tracks are available through distance delivery.  

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult/Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Women's Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Certified Nurse Midwife