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Doctor of Nursing Practice

Doctor of Nursing Practice 

Our program prepares nursing professionals to work at the highest level of professional practice and equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary to lead within complex health care systems, drive innovation, and apply best practices to improve quality of care.   


The University of Utah College of Nursing offers advanced practice nursing programs as a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.  The DNP degree is designed for bachelor's prepared nurses seeking a terminal degree in nursing practice and offers an alternative to research-focused doctoral programs.  The DNP curricula provides education in evidence-based practice, quality improvement, and systems leadership, among other key areas.

Courses in the DNP Program are a combination of on-campus and online. The DNP Program is not a fully online program.

Utah Advantage

Remain Within Your Community

The College is a national leader in providing distance-accessible education for students enrolled in MS and DNP programs who live more than 60 miles from the college. Nurses who are currently working in rural areas may be able to attend graduate school without leaving their communities. Learn more HERE.

Nationally Ranked Programs

The Nursing DNP programs ranked No. 22 overall among public universities.

Outstanding Certification Pass Rates

Our combined national certification pass rate for Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Certification stands at 99.5%.

BS to DNP Program

The BS-DNP program specialty tracks includes:

  • Adult/Gerontology Acute Care
  • Neonatal
  • Nurse Midwifery
  • Primary Care (Adult/Gerontology, Family, and Pediatrics)
  • Psychiatric Mental Health
  • Women's Health
  • Women's Health and Nurse Midwifery dual track

Masters to DNP Program

The Masters to Doctor of Nursing Practice (MS-DNP) program of study is designed for master's prepared nurses to obtain the DNP degree in one of two pathways:

  • Direct Care for advance practice registered nurses (APRN)
  • Organizational Leadership (non-APRNs, nurse administrators, and APRNs)

Graduate Certificates

Post-APRN Licensure Certificates

  • Adult/Gerontology Acute Care
  • Family
  • Nurse Midwifery
  • Women's Health
  • Psychiatric/Mental Health

Learn more about Post-APRN Licensure Certificates HERE.

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 the 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 the practice to changing social, political, and global healthcare environments.

Nursing Education Xchange (NEXus)

The College of Nursing is a member of the Nursing Education Exchange (NEXus). NEXus is a collaboration between participating doctoral programs in nursing that allows doctoral students enrolled at member colleges and universities to take courses for a common price that may not be offered at a student's home institution. Enrollment, registration, tuition, and contact information may be found by visiting the University of Utah NEXus page.

Eligibility for Licensure within US States and Territories

The nursing programs in the College of Nursing are board approved and possess national certifications from recognized national organizations.  Please click HERE to access a list of states/jurisdictions that indicate whether or not our undergraduate (BS) and graduate (DNP) curricula meet one of the following options:  meets requirement for licensure, does not meet requirements for licensure, or has not yet been determined.


Gillian Tufts, DNP, FNP
Assistant Dean, MSN and DNP Programs

Contact Us

Office of Student Services
Phone: (801) 587-3194

Questions for a graduate advisor?