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DNP Doctor of Nursing Practice

School of Nursing & Health Sciences

Course Requirements

Credits breakdown

  • Core: 36
  • Doctoral capstone: 16 (minimum requirement)

Total quarter credits: 52

Our programs are based on quarter credits, rather than semester credits. One quarter credit equals 2/3 semester credit. Quarter credits are unique to GuidedPath, while program points are unique to FlexPath.

Courses

Total program credits needed for graduation: 52

One academic quarter is three months. You will have a three-week break between each quarter.

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Practicum Requirement(s):

Minimum of 1,000 supervised practicum hours. See the Practicum section, below, for more information.

 

Thirteen Required Courses

 

52 quarter credits

NHS8002
Collaboration, Communication, and Case Analysis for Doctoral Learners

This course prepares learners for doctoral-level coursework in the School of Nursing and Health Sciences. Throughout the course, learners analyze and evaluate how the scholar-practitioner model provides guidance for developing competencies in effective and ethical health care leadership, including professional and interprofessional collaboration, communication, inclusion, and decision making. Must be taken during the learner’s first quarter. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits
DNP8010
Management in Advanced Contemporary Nursing

The focus of this course is on the management skills needed to create valuable, proactive change in health care settings and within complex health care delivery systems. Learners use conceptual and analytical skills to evaluate the links among practice, organizational, population, fiscal, and policy issues and apply this knowledge to professional practice.

4 quarter credits
DNP8012
Nursing Technology and Health Care Information Systems

Learners in this course apply information technology and research methods used within the health care environment. In particular, learners evaluate the use of technology in health care information systems for the purposes of monitoring outcomes of care and assessing quality improvement.

4 quarter credits
DNP8014 *
Global Population Health

In this course, learners analyze epidemiological, biostatistical, occupational, and environmental data and use it to develop, implement, and evaluate health promotion and disease prevention efforts in global populations. Throughout the course, learners focus on preparing themselves to lead the development and implementation of institutional, local, state, national, or international health care policy. Prerequisite(s): DNP8010. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits
NHS8040 *
21st-Century Health Care Improvement

Learners in this course build foundational knowledge and skills needed to shape the future of health care. Through the lens of a 21st-century health care leader, learners use critical thinking, analysis, and creative insights to examine a problem, gap, or opportunity for improvement within a health care or public health delivery system. Learners also complete a culminating project charter to further develop a coherent quality improvement plan for 21st-century health care. Prerequisite(s): NHS8002. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer. 

4 quarter credits
NHS8050
Preparing for the Professional Doctorate in Nursing and Health Sciences

In this course, learners prepare for the practice change project that serves as the culmination of the professional doctorate. Learners compare a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) with a professional doctorate; identify a clinical or organizational problem or opportunity for improvement within a health care or public health setting; and apply literature search techniques to identify research related to the practice/process problem. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits
NHS8065 *
Foundations of Evidence-Based Practice in Health Care

In this course, learners apply the steps of the evidence-based practice process to a challenge in health care. Learners differentiate among qualitative, quantitative, and mixed research design, methods, and evidence, and evaluate the quality of qualitative research methods and results. Learners also interpret the results and practical significance of health care data analyses and assess their strengths and weaknesses in writing as a doctoral professional. Prerequisite(s): NHS8050. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits
NHS8070 *
Evaluation and Interpretation of Data in Health Care

In this course, learners explore underlying concepts and reasoning related to the collection and evaluation of qualitative and quantitative data in health care research. Learners apply appropriate statistical techniques and practice interpreting frequently encountered statistical outcomes. In addition, learners assess the quality of statistical and qualitative research methods reported in peer-reviewed health care literature. Prerequisite(s): NHS8060. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits
NHS8700 *
Keystone: Determining Readiness for the Professional Doctorate Project

In this course, learners focus on synthesizing the knowledge and skills gained during their program. Learners state the case for their planned practice change project to demonstrate their readiness to enter the professional doctorate project process. In addition, learners identify strategies to secure a supervisor/preceptor and project site. Grading for this course is S/NS. Prerequisite(s): NHS8070. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits

Learners must register for DNP9971 a minimum of four times to fulfill their program requirements.

DNP9971
Doctoral Capstone ‡

This course provides learners with resources, guidance, and support as they complete the required milestones toward completion of a doctoral capstone. Learners apply scholarly research within a particular professional context to advance their knowledge in the science and practice of the profession and solve organization, institutional, or community concerns. Department consent is required for registration. Grading for this course is S/ NS. Learners must register for this course a minimum of four times to fulfill their program requirements. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

4 quarter credits each

 

 

Total

 

 

52 quarter credits

* Denotes courses that have prerequisite(s). Refer to the descriptions for further details.

† The BSN, MSN, and DNP degree programs at Capella University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 887-6791.

‡ Learners are responsible for the cost of their travel, accommodations, food, and other expenses associated with this course.

This program does not prepare graduates for licensure as an RN or APRN.

Learners enrolled in the DNP degree program are required to maintain a current, unrestricted RN license throughout their program.

 

Practicum

Learners enrolled in the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree program must have 1,000 documented hours of post-bachelor’s, hands-on practicum experience as a requirement of their program. The practicum experience requires learners to synthesize and expand the knowledge and skills acquired throughout the program by applying evidence-based methods to practice. Learners are responsible for finding an appropriate preceptor to oversee the practicum experience. With their preceptors, learners then engage in in-depth work within a practice environment that is the focus of their final project. The environment for the practicum experience is a professional site at which learners, with the support of program faculty and their on-site preceptors, design and participate in a practice change initiative such as a pilot study, program evaluation, quality improvement project, evaluation of a new practice model, or consulting project. Learners use the practicum experience to help them achieve the DNP program outcomes and competencies and the learning objectives related to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice.

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