Prepare for leadership with our online Doctor of Nursing Practice degree program.
This program is designed for RNs who have a master’s degree in nursing and an area of advanced nursing practice.
Walden students have up to 8 years to complete their doctoral program unless they petition for an extension.
In general, students are continuously registered in the dissertation/doctoral study course until they complete their capstone project and it is approved. This usually takes longer than the minimum required terms in the dissertation/doctoral study course shell.
To complete a doctoral dissertation/doctoral study, students must obtain the academic approval of several independent evaluators including their committee, the University Research Reviewer, and the Institutional Review Board; pass the Form and Style Review; gain approval at the oral defense stage; and gain final approval by the Chief Academic Officer. Students must also publish their dissertation on ProQuest before their degree is conferred. Learn more about the dissertation/doctoral study process in the DNP Project Overview.
This sequence represents the minimum time to completion. For a personalized estimate of the number of your transfer credits that Walden would accept, call an enrollment advisor at 855-646-5286.
|Course Code||NURS 8000||Course||Foundations and Essentials of Doctoral Study in Nursing||Credits||(1 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8110||Course||Theoretical and Scientific Foundations for Nursing||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8200||Course||Methods for Evidence-Based Practice||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8210||Course||Transforming Nursing and Healthcare Through Technology||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8300||Course||Organizational and Systems Leadership for Quality Improvement||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8410||Course||Best Practices in Nursing Specialties||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8310||Course||Epidemiology and Population Health||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8400||Course||Evidence-Based Practice I: Assessment and Design||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8100||Course||Healthcare Policy and Advocacy||Credits||(5 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8500||Course||Evidence-Based Practice II: Planning and Implementation||Credits||(3 cr.)|
|Course Code||NURS 8510||Course||Evidence-Based Practice III: Implementation, Evaluation, and Dissemination||Credits||(3 cr.)|
Students in this course are introduced to Walden University and are provided with a foundation for professional development in doctoral nursing practice. Students learn professional standards and end-of-program expectations, and they explore the role of the scholar-practitioner as one who effects positive social change. They engage in course assignments focused on the practical application of professional writing, critical-thinking skills, and the requirements for successful participation in an online curriculum. Students also explore the essentials of being a Walden doctoral student, relevant professional and specialty standards of doctoral-level nursing, intra- and interprofessional collaboration, and the process of the DNP scholarly project.
In this course, students focus on the integration of scientific, philosophical, and theoretical concepts as the basis for the highest level of nursing practice. They examine the scientific underpinnings for nursing practice, including biobehavioral, pathophysiological, psychosocial, and environmental sciences, and they explore the interrelationship among knowledge, research, and practice. Students also explore and discuss clinical inquiry, ethical issues, and models of evidence-based practice. Considering various philosophies, students describe their own philosophy of nursing. They also apply course concepts to a variety of practical assignments, including a literature review, concept map, and evaluation of current clinical practice problems, among others.
Students in this course focus on the integration of scientific, philosophical, and theoretical concepts as the basis for the highest level of nursing practice. The scientific underpinnings for nursing practice including biobehavioral, pathophysiological, psychosocial, and environmental sciences are examined. The interrelationship among knowledge, research, and practice is explored. Clinical inquiry, ethical issues, and models of evidence-based practice are presented.
When used effectively, information technology can support generation of new knowledge and emerging information technologies. In this course, students examine the critical appraisal and use of information technology in advanced nursing practice. Students work toward gaining the skills and knowledge to process and manage information systems/technology resources in consumer, clinical, and public health settings. Students engage in a variety of discussions and assignments designed to provide practical application of content on topics including retrieval and critical analysis of digital data to support healthcare quality improvement; electronic health records integration and evaluation; and Web-based learning and intervention tools to support and improve patient care. They also explore ethical, regulatory, and legal issues as well as the healthcare standards and principles for selecting and evaluating information systems and patient care technology.
The focus of this course is on the development of leadership strategies and competencies to support healthcare and organizational quality delivery of care. Emphasis is placed on a systems approach exploring the organizational structures, which impact healthcare quality performance and, ultimately, patient outcomes. Using macro (enterprise-wide) and micro (individual and team performance) perspectives, students examine the leadership roles, which define, develop, and support decisions effecting quality strategies. In this course, students address how key organizational theories, principles, and concepts relate to achieving the effective and efficient delivery of safe healthcare services. Through the development of a quality program initiative, students demonstrate an understanding of the impact an initiative has on organizational structure, its environment, and the system's leadership.
A scholarly inquiry of key concepts in nursing is presented in this course. Students analyze best practices and evolving issues in their nursing areas of practice. They explore advanced specialty practice problems through a guided initial review of literature. Students develop a program or project to address clinical/practice questions under the guidance of an approved clinical mentor. Students generate an evidence-based practice question and develop and implement an intervention within the practicum setting. Students disseminate the project plan and results at the practicum site. Note: This is a 5-cr. course (4 didactic cr., 1 clinical cr.). Clinical hours have a 1:6 ratio (credit/clinical), resulting in 72 clinical hours.
Students in this course are provided with an overview of epidemiologic methodology in the study of the distribution and etiology of disease and health-related conditions in human populations. Students examine important study designs and discuss the strengths and weaknesses inherent in each. They explore and discuss select global problems, such as infectious diseases, bioterrorism attacks, and effects of disasters and emergencies, and they apply epidemiologic and biostatistical methods to study factors related to aggregate, population, and individual health. Additionally, students work toward gaining cultural sensitivity and an interprofessional approach to caring for diverse populations at risk to ensure access to care.
In this course, students focus on the competencies required of the healthcare professional in planning for the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of health promotion and disease prevention initiatives. They explore and discuss strategic approaches to planning, implementation, and evaluation, including cost-benefit analysis.
Many economic, financial, and political factors influence the delivery of healthcare, making healthcare reform a challenging task. In this course, students examine these factors and challenges, and they consider policy reform through legal, regulatory, ethical, societal, and organizational contexts. They examine the political and policy process, including agenda setting, stakeholder analysis, and application of policy analysis frameworks. Students also explore the importance of interprofessional collaboration in improving health outcomes through the policy process and advocacy for development and implementation of nursing and healthcare policies in organizations at the local, state, national, and international levels. Students engage in written analyses through which they develop new policies and critically evaluate existing policies though policy analysis frameworks.
In this DNP practicum course, students focus on planning and implementing an evidence-based practice program/project designed to address their clinical/practice questions; students complete work under the guidance of an approved practicum mentor. Students generate practicum journals and discussion content that drill down to the evidence-based change project related to their clinical/practice question and resulting findings, conclusions, and recommendations.
The focus of this DNP practicum course is on the evaluation of an evidence-based health project relevant to aggregate, systems, or organizational levels of healthcare. In addition, students develop and plan for the dissemination of a scholarly product generated by that project to a wider community of scholar-practitioners. Students work with an approved practicum mentor to generate practicum evidence and complete practicum journal requirements, and the evidence-based project, demonstrating the use of leadership skills and advanced nursing practice knowledge to promote quality improvement, improve health outcomes, and inform healthcare policy. Students in the DNP practicum course are provided with the opportunity to reflect on self-evaluation, professional growth, and postgraduation plans.
*NURS 8700, DNP Project Mentoring (0 credits), is taken concurrently with these courses. It will serve as a platform for the ongoing collaborative learning communication between students' and their DNP Project Committee chairs and as a repository for drafts and documentation materials related to the DNP Project. Students will be assigned to sections of NURS 8700 based on their DNP Project Committee chair. There is no cost for the course.
|Course Code||NURS 8600||Course||DNP Field Experience||Credits||(1 cr.)|
The purpose of this course is to provide students with the opportunity to complete additional practicum hours to fulfill the 1,000-hour requirement of the DNP. Students may take the NURS 8600 - DNP Field Experience course up to six times, based on practicum hours attained prior to DNP admission. Students generate practicum portfolio evidence. In this 1-cr. practicum course, there is a 1:6 ratio of credit to practicum hours, resulting in 72 practicum hours.
†The DNP requires a minimum of 1,000 post-BSN practicum hours, with at least 500 hours at the DNP level. Students who need more practicum hours to meet this requirement may take this course for additional credits (up to six times). Each credit hour is equal to 72 practicum hours to help students reach a total of 1,000 practicum hours.
|Course Code||NURS 8701||Course||DNP Project Completion||Credits||(3 cr. per term as needed to complete the DNP Project.)|
The purpose of this course is to serve as a platform for ongoing communication between students and their DNP Project Committee chairs and a repository for drafts and documentation related to the DNP project. Students will be assigned to sections of NURS 8701 based on their DNP Project Committee chair, which will support communication between students who are working on their DNP projects with common faculty chairs in an ongoing collaborative learning community.
Students take this course for a minimum of 4 quarters and are continuously enrolled until completion of their Doctoral Project with final Chief Academic Officer (CAO) approval.
To complete a doctoral project, students must obtain the academic approval of several independent evaluators including their committee, the University Research Reviewer, and the Institutional Review Board; pass the Form and Style Review; gain approval at the oral defense stage; and gain final approval by the Chief Academic Officer. Students must also publish their doctoral project on ProQuest before their degree is conferred.
‡This additional 3-credit course is only needed if the student has not completed the DNP project by the end of NURS 8510.
|Course Code||DRWA 8880G||Course||Doctoral Writing Assessment||Credits||(0 cr.)|
This course is part of Walden’s commitment to help prepare students to meet the university’s expectations for writing in courses at the doctoral level. In this course, students write a short academic essay that will be scored by a team of writing assessors. Based on the essay score, students will complete or be exempted from additional required writing support needed to meet writing proficiency standards. This required assessment course is free. Students will be enrolled automatically in it at the beginning of their doctoral program.