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Graduate Catalog 2012-13


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College of Nursing


Sylvia Brown, Dean, 4205L Health Sciences Building
Martha Engelke, Associate Dean for Research and Scholarship, 4210C Health Sciences Building
Jana Pressler, Associate Dean, Graduate Studies, 3166A Health Sciences Building
Kathy Sitzman, Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies, 3166F Health Sciences Building
Alta Andrews, Director for Community Partnerships and Practice, 4205H Health Sciences Building
Marie E. Pokorny, PhD Director, 4165S Health Sciences Building
Mary Ann Rose, Chair, Graduate Nursing Science, 3164D Health Sciences Building

Master of Science in Nursing


The master of science in nursing program prepares graduates for advanced practice nursing and for leadership roles in a variety of community based or acute care provider agencies. The MSN program offers eight concentrations:

Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (online)
Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult Health (online)
Family Nurse Practitioner (online)
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (online)
Nurse Anesthesia
Nurse Midwifery (online)
Nursing Education (online)
Nursing Leadership (online)
Part-time study is available. Certificate programs are available for post-master’s study in selected areas. The program is accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission, 61 Broadway, New York, NY 10006; telephone 212-363-5555.
The nurse midwifery concentration is also accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME) formerly called the American College of Nurse-Midwives, Division of Accreditation, 8403 Colesville Road, Suite 1550, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone 240-485-1802, fax 240-485-1818.

The nurse anesthesia program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs, 222 South Prospect Avenue, Park Ridge, IL 60068; telephone 847-692-7050.

A RN/MSN option is available for registered nurses who do not have a baccalaureate degree in nursing.

The Alternate Entry (AE) MSN option is a plan of study leading to the MSN degree for individuals who have earned a baccalaureate degree in another field. The program is divided into 2 phases: Phase I (Pre licensure) includes graduate courses that include content and experiences that are required to take the Registered Nurse Licensure examination (NCLEX-RN) and preparation for advanced study in nursing. Phase I only begins in fall semesters and full-time enrollment is required. Successful completion of the NCLEX-RN and licensure as a Registered Nurse is required prior to entering Phase II clinical concentration courses. Students may enroll in core classes during the first semester of Phase II, while obtaining credentials. Phase II will include courses in a selected clinical concentration.

Admission

Admission to the master of science in nursing degree program requires the student to meet the minimum admission requirements for graduate study as established by the university and the following requirements established by the College of Nursing.

  • a baccalaureate degree in nursing from an accredited program
  • a minimum GPA of 2.7 in undergraduate studies and a minimum GPA of 3.0 in nursing major
  • acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) or Miller Analogies Test (MAT) within the past five years (GRE score required for nurse anesthesia and nurse midwifery concentration applicants.)
  • currently hold a nonrestricted license to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in North Carolina or a NCSBN compact state (The out-of-state student must procure a North Carolina RN license before enrolling in clinical courses.)
  • a statement describing the applicant’s interest in graduate study, career goals, and the MSN degree’s relationship to those goals
  • three professional references
  • a personal interview with a member of the graduate faculty

Due to the high demand of courses by our enrolled MSN students, the College of Nursing will not enroll nondegree graduate students at this time. Prospective students are encouraged to apply for full admission as soon as possible in order to be eligible for all College of Nursing course offerings.

Applicants for the nurse midwifery concentration, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year RN experience (labor and delivery preferred), demonstrate a commitment to practice with under-served populations, and one of the references should be from a health care provider knowledgeable about the applicant’s nursing practice.

Applicants for the family nurse practitioner and adult-gerontology nurse practitioner concentrations, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year RN experience and provide a third reference from a health care provider knowledgeable about the applicant’s nursing practice. The application deadline for both concentrations is January 2.

Applicants for the nurse anesthesia concentration, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one-year adult critical care experience, completion of a supplemental nurse anesthesia admissions packet, a total of five professional references (two on forms provided in nurse anesthesia admissions packet), and an interview with the Nurse Anesthesia Admissions Committee. The application deadline for the nurse anesthesia concentration is May 31.

Applicants for the clinical nurse specialist concentration, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year of current practice experience and provide a third reference from a health care provider knowledgeable about the applicant’s nursing practice.

Completed applications for the clinical nurse specialist concentration will be considered for fall and spring admission. Applications must be received by October 1 for spring, June 1 for fall.

Applicants for the neonatal nurse practitioner concentration, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have two years of current practice experience in a critical-care environment for high risk neonatal care RN experience and provide a third reference from a health care provider knowledgeable about the applicant’s nursing practice.

Applicants may take core courses while gaining the required RN experience for admission into selected concentrations.

Applicants for admission to the (AE) MSN option must meet general admission requirements with the exception of a valid RN license and baccalaureate degree in nursing. Applicants must have a baccalaureate degree in another field. Additional requirements include:

  • Completion of prerequisite courses – chemistry, human anatomy and physiology, microbiology, human growth and development, nutrition, ethics, and statistics.
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA in undergraduate major
  • Current nonrestricted license to practice as a RN in NC or a NCSBN compact state prior to entering Phase II clinical concentration courses.

Application deadline for the (AE) MSN option is December 1.

Completed applications will be considered as they are received, with the exception of nurse anesthesia, family nurse practitioner, adult nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, and the alternate entry master of science in nursing option.

Applicants for the nursing education, nursing leadership, and clinical nurse specialist concentrations must have a minimum of one year RN experience prior to enrolling in specialty courses.

Applicants for the nursing leadership concentration, in addition to the general admission criteria, must provide a third reference from a health care provider knowledgeable about the applicant’s nursing practice.

Applicants for admission to the RN/MSN option will be evaluated using the following criteria.

  • a minimum 3.0 GPA in undergraduate studies and a minimum 3.0 GPA in the nursing major in the previous nursing program
  • one year RN experience
  • an acceptable score on the GRE or the MAT within the past five years
  • current nonrestricted license to practice as a RN in North Carolina or a NCSBN compact state
  • a statement describing the applicant’s interest in graduate study, career goals, and the MSN degree’s relationship to those goals
  • three professional references
  • a personal interview with the director of RN/BSN studies and a member of the College of Nursing graduate faculty

Program Prerequisites

A course in statistics with a grade of C or higher and basic computer skills with both applications software and the Internet are prerequisites for all concentrations. A course in basic accounting is a prerequisite for the nursing leadership concentration.

Students in the (AE) MSN option must complete all cognate requirements prior to beginning the program. Admission to the (AE) MSN option does not guarantee entry into a specific graduate concentration.

Students in the RN/MSN option must complete all general education and cognate requirements prior to beginning undergraduate nursing courses. Separate application is made to the graduate program in the first or second semester of study in the RN/MSN option. Students enrolled in the RN/MSN option must maintain a 3.0 GPA in the 15 s.h. of undergraduate nursing courses to be eligible to continue in this option. Admission to the RN/MSN option does not guarantee entry into a specific graduate concentration.

Degree Requirements

Depending upon the concentration area chosen within the degree program, the master of science in nursing requires 37-69 s.h. credit as follows. Concentrations are clustered as administrative, clinical, and education.

Administrative:
Nursing Leadership – Acute Care Health Systems, 42 s.h.
Nursing Leadership – Community Based Health Systems, 42 s.h.
Nursing Leadership – Educational Systems, 42 s.h.

Clinical:
Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, 47 s.h.
Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult Health, 43 s.h.
Family Nurse Practitioner, 51 s.h.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, 42 s.h.
Nurse Anesthesia, 69 s.h.
Nurse Midwifery, 51 s.h.

Education:
Nursing Education, 37 s.h.

Requirements:
  1. Common core: NURS 6080, 6081, 6082, 6083, - 13 s.h.
  2. Cluster core (Choose appropriate cluster for concentration.) - 9-20 s.h.
    Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (9 s.h.): NURS 6050, 6610, 6611
    Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult Health (12 s.h.): NURS 6050, 6208, 6610, 6611
    Family Nurse Practitioner (9 s.h.): NURS 6050, 6610, 6611
    Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (9 s.h.): NURS 6417, 6418, 6419
    Nurse Anesthesia (20 s.h.): NURS 6610, 6810, 6811, 6813; PTHE 8008
    Nurse Midwifery (9 s.h.): NURS 6050, 6610, 6611
    Nursing Education (9 s.h.): NURS 6050, 6610, 6611
    Nursing Leadership: NURS (10 s.h.) NURS 6971, 6973, 6974, 6986
  3. Concentration area (Choose one area.) - 15-36 s.h.
    Administrative (19 s.h.):
    Nursing Leadership – Acute Care Health Systems (19 s.h.): NURS 6977, 6978, 6983, 6984, 6985, 3 s.h. electives
    Nursing Leadership – Community Based Health Systems (19 s.h.): NURS 6310, 6311, 6977, 6978, 6983, 6984
    Nursing Leadership – Educational Health Systems (19 s.h.): NURS 6903, 6904, 6909, 6977, 6978, 6983
    Clinical (18-36 s.h.):
    Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (25 s.h.) 6612, 6613, 6614, 6615, 6618, 6621, 6622, 6623
    Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult Health (18 s.h.): NURS 6959, 6960, 6961, 6962, 6989; 3 s.h. elective clinical specialty courses
    Family Nurse Practitioner (29 s.h.): NURS 6612, 6613, 6614, 6615, 6616, 6617, 6618, 6619, 6620
    Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (20 s.h.): NURS 6420, 6421, 6422, 6423, 6424, 6425
    Nurse Anesthesia (36 s.h.): NURS 6805, 6806, 6812, 6814, 6815, 6816, 6817, 6818, 6819, 6820, 6821, 6822, 6823, 6824
    Nurse Midwifery (29 s.h.): NURS 6109, 6110, 6112, 6113, 6115, 6116, 6117, 6118, 6119
    Nursing Education (15 s.h.): NURS 6903, 6904, 6905; 6909; 3 s.h. elective or cognate
  4. Students in the Nursing Education concentration who have limited teaching experience may be required to take NURS 6908.
  5. Students in the Nursing Leadership concentration who have limited finance experience may be required to take NURS 6987.
Enrollment is necessary for continued research advisement. A comprehensive assessment is required for graduation for all MSN degree-seeking students.

Students in the RN/MSN option must complete the following undergraduate courses prior to enrolling in any graduate nursing courses–NURS 3020, 3021, 3510, 3900, 4210, 4211.

Post MSN Certificate Programs

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Eight post-MSN certificate options (adult-gerontology nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, family nurse practitioner, neonatal nurse practitioner, nurse-anesthesia, nurse midwifery, nursing leadership and nursing education) offer advanced practice education, qualifying those who complete the clinical options to take national certification exams. In addition, the nursing education post-master’s certificate prepares nurses for beginning teaching roles in nursing education.

Admission Requirements

  • A master’s degree in nursing from an accredited program
  • A current non-restricted license to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in North Carolina or an NCSBN compact state. Individual advisement will be necessary for licensure regulations for online out-of-state students.
  • A personal statement describing the applicant’s interest in graduate study, career goals, and the certificate’s relationship to those goals.
  • Three professional references with one reference from an individual who is knowledgeable of the applicant’s nursing practice
  • One year clinical experience as an RN
  • A personal interview with a member of the graduate faculty

Applicants for the nurse midwifery post-master’s certificate, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year RN experience (labor and delivery preferred).

Applicants for the nurse anesthesia post-master’s certificate, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year adult critical care experience as a RN, completion of a supplemental nurse anesthesia admission packet, a total of five professional references (two on forms provided in the nurse anesthesia admissions packet) and an interview with Nurse Anesthesia Admissions Committee. Courses in physiology and chemistry/biochemistry within five years are highly recommended. Acceptable score on GRE within past 5 years (GRE required).

Applicants for the neonatal post-master’s certificate, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have two years of current practice experience as a RN in a critical care environment for high-risk neonatal care.

Applicants for the clinical nurse specialist post master’s certificate, in addition to the general admission criteria, must have one year RN experience.

Applicants for the post-master’s certificate options in adult nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, family nurse practitioner, neonatal nurse practitioner, and nurse midwifery must have had graduate level courses in pathophysiology (reproductive physiology is an additional requirement for nurse midwifery), health assessment and pharmacology within the past five years or approval by the concentration director; otherwise, students will be required to take these courses as part of the post-master’s certificate requirement.

Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner: - 10-33 s.h.
NURS 6621,6622,6623. Depending on student’s needs and past education, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6050, 6610, 6611, 6612, 6613, 6614, 6615, 6618, or equivalent clinical courses.

Clinical Nurse Specialist: - 15-30 s.h.
NURS 6959, 6960, 6961, 6962, 6989. Depending on student’s needs and past education, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6050, 6208, 6610, 6611, 6214, 6224 or equivalent clinical courses.

Family Nurse Practitioner: - 15-38 s.h.
NURS 6616, 6617, 6619, 6620. Depending on student’s needs and past education, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6050, 6610, 6611, 6612, 6613, 6614, 6615, 6618.

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner: - 20-29 s.h.
NURS 6420, 6421, 6422, 6423, 6424, 6425. Depending on student’s needs and past education, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6417, 6418, 6419.

Nurse Anesthesia: - 56 s.h.
NURS 6610, 6805, 6806, 6810, 6811, 6812, 6813, 6814, 6815, 6816, 6817, 6818, 6819, 6820, 6821, 6822, 6823, 6824; PTHE 7002.

Nurse Leadership: - 19-25 s.h.
Acute Care Health Systems: NURS 6971, 6984, 6973, 6974*, 6977**, 6983, 6985, 6986, 6987**
Community Based Health Systems: NURS 6310, 6311, 6971, 6973, 6974*, 6977**, 6983, 6986, 6987**
Educational Health Systems: NURS 6903, 6904, 6909, 6973, 6974*, 6977**, 6983, 6986, 6987**

*If less than two years leadership experience in the focus area NURS 6977 will be required.
**If less than 2 years of financial experience NURS 6987 will be required.

Nurse Midwifery: - 22-38 s.h. Post Master's Certificate
NURS 6109, 6113, 6115, 6116, 6117, 6118. Depending on student’s needs and past education, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6050, 6110, 6112, 6119, 6610, 6611.

Nursing Education: - 12-15 s.h.
NURS 6903, 6904, 6905, 6909. Depending on student’s needs, past education, and teaching experience, additional course work from the following may be required: NURS 6908.

Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing

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The doctor of philosophy in nursing prepares nurse researchers and scholars to explore, develop, and move forward the scientific bases of nursing practice and education. Students are prepared to conduct research in the domains of nursing science. The curriculum is enriched through cognate study in the social, behavioral, and biological sciences; interdisciplinary research; and the integration of technology in program delivery. Dissertation research prepares graduates to contribute discoveries to the body of nursing and health care knowledge. The location and mission of the College of Nursing as well as the expertise of the faculty provide a unique opportunity for the discovery of knowledge related to nursing and health issues in rural underserved areas. Upon graduation, students are prepared to assume leadership positions as researchers, administrators in public and private health care organizations, policy makers and analysts, and university faculty.

The BSN to PhD option is a plan of study leading to the PhD degree. This graduate level option blends the doctoral curriculum with two different MSN concentrations – the nursing education concentration or the nursing leadership concentration. It reduces the number of master’s level courses required in the traditional MSN program and facilitates completion of the PhD in Nursing.

Admission Requirements
  • Satisfactory performance on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) within five years prior to admission.
  • Written statement of personal career, educational, and scholarship goals.
  • Three written professional references from individuals with expertise to comment on the applicant’s capability for research and scholarship (for example, university professors, employers). At least one of the references must be from a doctorally-prepared nurse.
  • A master’s degree in nursing from an accredited school. (Applicants without a MSN must have a BSN from an accredited program.) See below for details on the BSN to PhD admission requirements.
  • Minimum grade-point average of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale on all graduate work.
  • Evidence of current unrestricted license to practice as a nurse in North Carolina or a NCSBN compact state. Students on foreign student visas must present evidence of professional standing in their respective countries.
  • Satisfactory performance on Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) where English is not the first language.
  • Computer competency, with proficiency in basic software. The school requires that all students use e-mail and World Wide Web access for communication and course work.
  • A graduate statistics course which included inferential statistics.
  • A current curriculum vita.
  • A representative example of scholarly work done by the applicant.
  • A personal interview with two members of the Graduate Faculty to include a discussion of congruence between the students research interests/career goals and the expertise and research of faculty.

Applicants for admission to the BSN to PhD option must meet general admission requirements for the PhD program. Additional requirements include:

  • Minimum GPA of 3.3 and no grade below B on all previous coursework.
  • BSN from an accredited nursing program.
  • Recommendation of the Director for the MSN concentration selected and the PhD Program Director.
  • Completion of at least two calendar years of full time employment experience or the equivalent in clinical nursing practice as a registered nurse prior to entering the doctoral program of study.
  • A graduate statistics course which includes inferential statistics prior to enrolling in doctoral courses.

Application
The PhD in nursing program admits 6-8 students each year. Applications for study to begin in the fall semester will be accepted until March 1 or until seats are filled. BSN to PhD applications for spring semester are due September 1 or until seats are filled. Applicants are expected to ensure that the Graduate School and the College of Nursing receive all supporting credentials by the final filing date. Applicants are evaluated in five areas: GPA, GRE, references, essay, and interview. Completed applications are considered as they are received. All completed applications received by the final filing date will be given careful consideration. Interviews are conducted as completed applications are received. Each applicant will be notified in writing of the admission decision after the admission process is completed.

Preference is given to those who demonstrate a capacity for creative inquiry, critical thinking, scholarship, and leadership. In the case of equally qualified applicants, preference will be given to individuals who intend to pursue doctoral study on a fulltime basis. Students will be assigned an academic advisor at the time of admission. All admitted PhD students are required to attend a College of Nursing orientation session in August.

Degree Requirements
Students are required to complete a minimum of 56 semester hours beyond the master’s degree (includes a minimum of 6 s.h. for dissertation) with the exception of BSN to PhD students who are required to complete between 74 and 80 semester hours. As in other research-focused programs of doctoral study, students in this program may expect to enroll in more than the minimum required credit hours and to be aware that study opportunities that focus on particular areas of study are in addition to the basic program requirements. Additional study is individualized and depends on the student’s background and graduate preparation as well as the employment role identified as a career focus. This program of study enrolls both full- and part-time students. Since enrollments in doctoral programs tend to be small, students need to closely adhere to the plan of study, as courses are offered once a year. To deviate from the plan of study will mean a delay of one or more semesters before course enrollment is again possible.

BSN to PhD Nursing Education Course Requirements:
Nursing Education Concentration Courses: NURS 6001, 6002, 6903, 6904, 6905, 6909, 6991, 6992, 6993, Graduate Statistics - 26 s.h.
PhD in Nursing Core: NURS 7004, 8200, 8201, 8202, 8203, 8220, 8225, 8226, 8227, 8235, 8240, 8241, 8255 (6 s.h. minimum), 8260, 8265, 9000 (6 s.h. minimum) - 47 s.h.
TOTAL - 73 s.h.

BSN to PhD Nursing Leadership Course Requirements:
Nursing Leadership Concentration Courses: NURS 6001, 6002, 6610, 6620, 6991, 6992, 6993 or COHE 6000, 6971, Graduate Statistics - 26 s.h.
PhD in Nursing Core: NURS 7004, 8200, 8201, 8202, 8203, 8220, 8225, 8226, 8227, 8235, 8240, 8241, 8255 (6 s.h. minimum), 8260, 8265, 9000 (6 s.h. minimum) - 47 s.h
TOTAL - 74 s.h.

PhD in Nursing Requirements:
Core Courses: NURS 7004, 8200, 8201, 8202, 8203, 8220, 8225, 8226, 8227, 8235, 8240, 8241, 8255 (6 s.h. minimum), 8260, 8265, 9000 (6 s.h. minimum) - 47 s.h.
Elective Courses - 9-12 s.h.
TOTAL - 56 s.h.

Graduate credits earned at other institutions may be accepted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the doctoral program. Courses offered for transfer credit will be evaluated individually relative to Graduate School requirements, program requirements, and the student’s plan of study. Transfer of more than 9 s.h. credit from another institution must be approved prior to admission. After admission, twenty percent of the courses may be completed at an approved university.

PhD students must complete at least five semesters in residence. Residency requirement must be completed prior to admission to candidacy.

Students must maintain a grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) throughout the program. Academic progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester by the academic advisor, who is responsible for notifying the associate dean for graduate programs if a student’s academic status is in jeopardy.

PhD students apply to take a candidacy examination upon completion of all required nursing courses with the exception of the dissertation. This examination must be successfully completed within five years of matriculation.

Students are required to conduct an original research project, which adds to the body of knowledge in nursing, and to communicate the research in a written dissertation and an oral defense of the dissertation within six years of admission. With endorsement of the dissertation committee and the associate dean for graduate programs, students may request one extension of not more than two semesters, summers included.

Doctor of Nursing Practice


The doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree is a practice-focused terminal degree earned by specialists in advanced nursing practice. The DNP focuses on developing nursing experts in translating and applying research findings into clinical practice rather than in generating new knowledge. The post-master’s DNP curriculum expands the competencies of the advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) from the master’s level to encompass knowledge required as nurse leaders in increasingly complex healthcare systems to assess published evidence informing practice, improve systems of care to improve healthcare outcomes, and to make changes to enhance the quality of care.

The location and mission of the College of Nursing as well as the expertise of the faculty provide a unique opportunity for the application of research in the identification and resolution of individual and aggregate health systems problems related to nursing and health issues in rural underserved areas. The DNP will provide the knowledge base to:

  • Implement and evaluate clinical practice based on scientific knowledge.
  • Assume advanced practice nursing roles as an expert clinician.
  • Demonstrate advanced leadership skills necessary to meet the challenges of increasingly complex healthcare organizations.
  • Demonstrate analytical methodologies for the evaluation of clinical practice and the application of scientific evidence to improve professional practice.
  • Apply clinical scholarship methodologies for organizational quality improvement, evidence-based practice, and healthcare outcomes.
  • Use advanced skills to design, develop, and implement the use of contemporary technological information systems.
  • Demonstrate expertise in the analysis, formulation, and implementation of healthcare policy.
  • Collaborate with interprofessional teams necessary to meet healthcare needs of individuals and populations.
  • Apply ethical theories, legal and practice standards, and advocacy to decision-making in healthcare issues.
  • Apply population-based methodologies for health promotion and disease-prevention in advanced practice.

Upon graduation, students are prepared to assume leadership positions as clinicians, administrators in public and private health care organizations, policy makers and analysts, and university faculty. Additional course work may be required, depending on student objectives and focus.

Admission Requirements:


  • One official transcript from each college or university attended.
  • A master's degree in nursing in an advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) specialty (nurse anesthesia, clinical nurse specialist, nurse midwifery, nurse practitioner) with evidence of completion of graduate level pathophysiology, pharmacology and advanced physical assessment courses from an accredited school*.
  • Certification as an APRN (if applicable).
  • A minimum grade-point average of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale on all graduate work.
  • Evidence of current unrestricted RN licensure from North Carolina or a National Council of State Boards of Nursing compact state. International applicants must work with the Commission of Graduate of Foreign Nursing Schools to validate credentials before applying for RN licensure.
  • Satisfactory performance on Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores where English is not the first language. Students on foreign student visas must present evidence of professional standing in their respective countries.
  • Computer competency with proficiency in development and use of databases, patient information systems, statistical sets, and use of various statistical packages for data analysis.
  • A graduate statistics course taken within the past 5 years which included inferential statistics.
  • A graduate research methodology course.
  • Satisfactory performance on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) within five years prior to admission. Scores will be individually evaluated in relation to all other admissions requirements.
  • Written statement of personal career, educational, and scholarship goals; identification of practice interests, leadership goals consistent with program goals.
  • Three written professional references from individuals with expertise to comment on the applicant's capability for doctoral scholarship (for example, university professors, employers). At least one of the references must be from a doctoral prepared nurse.
  • A current curriculum vita.
  • A representative portfolio limited to no more than 25 pages demonstrating evidence of professional practice accomplishments, community service and scholarship.
  • An interview with members of the DNP admission committee to include a discussion of congruence between the student's practice interests/career goals and the expertise and research of the faculty.


Application


The post-master’s DNP program admits 20 students each year. Applications for study to begin in the fall semester will be accepted until the end of the first full week in January. Applicants are expected to ensure that the Graduate School and the College of Nursing receive all supporting credentials by the final filing date. Applicants are evaluated in five areas: GPA, GRE, references, essay, and interview. Completed applications are considered in a competitive review process. All completed applications received by the final filing date will be given careful consideration. All completed applications are reviewed by the DNP admission committee shortly after the admission deadline. All completed applicant packets are discussed among the DNP admissions committee until consensus has been attained for competitive rankings for admission decisions. Every effort is made to complete the competitive admission process by the last week in February with admissions notifications by the first week of March. Each applicant will be notified in writing of the admission decision after the admission process is completed.

Preference is given to those who demonstrate a capacity for creative inquiry, critical thinking, scholarship, and leadership. In the case of equally qualified applicants, preference will be given to individuals who intend to pursue doctoral study on a full-time basis. Students will be assigned an academic advisor at the time of admission. All admitted DNP students are required to attend a College of Nursing orientation session at the beginning of the fall semester.

Degree Requirements


The post-master’s DNP is offered as an online, 36 semester hour post-master’s program of study for advanced practice nurses. Students are required to complete a minimum of 36 semester hours beyond the master’s degree. Campus requirements and group learning will serve as a foundational component of the DNP program of study. A minimum of 12 scholarly practicum credit hours will be divided over 4-5 semesters depending on capstone project complexity. In order to achieve the DNP competencies, students must complete a minimum of 1,000 hours of post-baccalaureate practice hours as part of a supervised academic program. Practice hours earned in accredited MSN/APRN programs are included in the total of the minimum required hours. Students may enroll in either full-time or part-time programs of study, completing their degree requirements in 4 or 6 semesters, respectively.

As in other programs of doctoral study, students in this program may expect to enroll in more than the minimum required credit hours and to be aware that study opportunities that focus on particular areas of study are in addition to the basic program requirements. Additional study is individualized and depends on the student’s background and graduate preparation as well as the employment role identified as a career focus. This program of study enrolls both full- and part-time students. Students need to closely adhere to the plan of study, as some courses are offered only once a year. To deviate from the plan of study will mean a delay of one or more semesters before course enrollment is again possible.

Post-Master’s DNP Requirements:


Core Courses: NURS 8266, 8267, 8268, 8270, 8271, 8273, 8275, 8276

Scholarly Practicum Courses: 8269, 8272, 8274, 8277

  • 36 credit hours (beyond the MSN requirements)
  • Capstone: A minimum of 12 scholarly practicum s.h. divided over 4-5 semesters depending on capstone project complexity.
  • In order to achieve the DNP competencies, programs should provide a minimum of 1,000 hours of practice post-baccalaureate as part of a supervised academic program.
  • 36 TOTAL Post-MSN/DNP Credit Hrs.

Graduate credits earned at other institutions may be accepted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the doctoral program. Courses offered for transfer credit will be evaluated individually relative to Graduate School requirements, program requirements, and the student’s plan of study. Please refer to the Graduate School Transfer Credits Policy located at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/grcat/regulations.cfm#transfer.

Students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) throughout the program. Academic progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester by the academic advisor, who is responsible for notifying the associate dean for graduate programs if a student’s academic status is in jeopardy.

Students are required to complete a scholarly practicum project, which informs practice, improves systems of care to improve healthcare outcomes, or make changes to enhance the quality of care. Scholarly projects are completed under the direction of the scholarly project committee consisting of a faculty advisor, faculty committee member and a clinical mentor with expertise in the scholarly project domain. The scholarly practicum project consists of a minimum of 12 scholarly practicum s.h. divided over 4-5 semesters depending on capstone project complexity. Successful progression through each phase of the scholarly development project must be approved by the scholarly project committee.