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DNP Doctor of Nursing Practice Doctor of Nursing Practice Preparatory Program


Registered Nurses can now make the transition from a non-nursing master's degree into the Capella Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program, with this three-course pathway that provides the essential knowledge and skills of a nursing-focused master's degree. Upon successful completion of the three DNP Preparatory Program courses, you'll automatically be entered into our DNP program and enrolled in your first courses. Capella's curriculum includes a hands-on Practice Immersion and incorporates the American Association of Colleges of Nursing's (AACN) Essentials of Master's Education in Nursing as well as the Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice. An MSN degree will not be conferred with this program. Already have an MSN? See our DNP program.

With a DNP, you'll join an exclusive group of health care leaders — fewer than 1% of nurses have a doctoral degree — while gaining the knowledge and skills to solve complex health care problems, shape systems of care, educate future generations of nurses, and lead organization-level improvements.

With a DNP, you'll be prepared to solve complex health care problems, shape systems of care, educate future generations of nurses, and lead organization-level improvements. You'll also join in answering the IOM Report's call to double the number of doctoral-educated nurses by 2020* and aligning with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) recommendation to hold the DNP as the new standard credential for all advanced practice nurses by 2015.

View all nursing pathways.

To learn more about this degree program, request more information and we will match you with an enrollment counselor who specializes in your area of study.

*The DNP degree program at Capella University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 887-6791

Degree Outcomes

With your Doctorate in Nursing Practice from Capella you'll have the ability to employ a science-based theoretical foundation to develop and evaluate new practices and approaches to health care delivery, lead planning and implementation of health care technologies, as well as develop, implement, and advocate for health care policy that meets the needs of specific populations. Discover specifically what you'll learn — and how you can apply it.

View full learning and career outcomes report for this program at

Career Outcomes

Common jobs with an online Doctorate in Nursing Practice include nursing administrator, education consultant, chief nursing officer, health care director, lobbyist or legislative consultant, or nursing professor. Potential workplaces include: hospital, clinic, medical center, community health agency, community or technical college, land-based or online university, hospital-based school of nursing, government agency or self employment.