College of Nursing

White Hall, 39 Butterfield Road, Kingston, RI 02881 – Phone: 401.874.2766 - Fax: 401.874.3811

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Doctor of Nursing Practice

Post M.S. to DNP


The Post M.S. to DNP program prepares advanced practice nurses at the highest level for clinical practice. It prepares clinicians capable of translating scientific findings, evaluating outcomes and programs, producing clinical scholarship, and transforming health care systems and policies.


The DNP program consists of 42 credits including 500 clinical practicum hours. A Master’s degree in Nursing with an advanced practice specialization is required. At the present time, the post-masters DNP curriculum builds on advanced practice specializations. A unique feature is the close link between DNP and PhD course work where 4 required courses are shared.

The course work includes nursing courses in scientific thinking, research methods (qualitative and quantitative), informatics, administration/leadership, and evidence based strategies in health care (19 credits). Practicum courses are continuous throughout the program (6 total credits; 240 hours). Interdisciplinary courses include epidemiology, social and health care policy, and organizational design & decision making in the Colleges of Pharmacy, Human Science & Services, and Business (9 credits). The program culminates with a capstone practicum (7 credits; 260 hours). The number of DNP clinical hours must total 1,000 (Masters + DNP = 1,000).

Download Curriculum Sheet (PDF)

NOTE: All courses are 3 credits unless noted.


  • NUR 660 – Philosophical & Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Science (4 credits)
  • NUR 651 – Advanced Methods in Nursing Research I (Qualitative Methods)
  • NUR 652 – Advanced Methods in Nursing Research II (Quantitative Methods)
  • NUR 549 – Evidence Based Strategies in Health Care Program Evaluation
  • NUR 551 – Theoretical Study of Nursing Administration/ Leadership
  • NUR 680 – Informatics in Health Care Settings


  • PHP 540 – Principles, Methods, and Applications of Epidemiology – An introduction to epidemiology, the study of health and disease in populations.
  • HDF 527 – Health Care Policy – Development of policy frameworks and their application for understanding current major health care policy issues across lifespan, including economic, political, and ethical dimensions.
  • MBA 540 – Organizational Decision Making and Design – Theory and skills development in strategic thinking and organizational design; use of critical analysis in the diagnosis of organizational and management problems.


  • NUR 686 – DNP Role Development (6 credits) – Implement the role of the doctorally prepared advanced practice nurse in selected clinical settings.Clinical practice is available in a variety of settings. The practicum experiences are planned with the student, taking into consideration the student’s interest, learning needs and career goals.


  • NUR 688 – D.N.P. Capstone Practicum and Project (7 credits) – A synthesis of prior practicums in the student’s area of interest, applying theoretical knowledge and research findings at the individual, professional, organizational, and societal levels. This practicum course culminates in a major synthesis project that result in system level change. The final DNP project produces a tangible and deliverable academic product that is derived from the practice immersion experience and is reviewed and evaluated by an academic committee. This product documents outcomes of the student’s educational experiences, provides a strategy to evaluate the immersion experience, and summarizes the student’s growth in knowledge and expertise.

ELECTIVES (1 Credit)

One elective credit to be determined with student’s advisor and taken anytime during the program. Selection should be based on prior knowledge, clinical experience, and career goals.

Part-time and full-time study

Students take 1 or 2, 3 credit courses per semester for part-time and 3 courses for full-time. Students may choose to move through courses in a two-and-one-half to a five-year time frame.


A car is necessary to reach the various clinical practice locations in the cities and rural areas. A local bus service connects the University to most major health service facilities, shopping, and service centers, but the bus routes and schedules may not always be convenient for the graduate student.


Additional information on tuition and a full breakdown of fees can be located on the Enrollment Services Tuition and Fees webpage.

Financial Aid

A variety of traineeships, graduate assistantships and loans are available to help finance doctoral education. More information can be found on the Graduate School Financial Support webpage.

Application Requirements:

Application deadlines are as follows: October 15th for spring start and February 15th for fall start. Applications are not reviewed until all materials are submitted. The following are required to complete the online graduate nursing application:

  • Transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended. Upon admission official copies will be required. NOTE: If you attended URI as an undergraduate or graduate you will still need to upload your transcripts. Directions to request URI transcripts can be found here.
  • Three letters of recommendation (academic and professional) attesting to the applicant’s capability for doctoral study, one of which must be by a doctorally prepared nurse.
  • Curriculum vita or resume.
  • 1-2 page statement of purpose which includes your goals for pursuing advanced study in nursing and planned progression through the program (i.e. part time or full time study)
  • Submission of two scholarly papers (one theoretical and the other empirical) is required for review by the graduate faculty. A master’s thesis or its equivalent may be submitted in lieu of two scholarly papers for review.

Admission Requirements:

Admission decisions will be based on a comprehensive review of applicant qualifications presented as a total package. The following criteria will be used as the guidelines for admission decisions:

  • Completed application with all materials.
  • Master’s degree in nursing or its equivalent. A minimum of 3.3 GPA is desirable.
  • R.N. License
  • National certification as an Advanced Practice Nurse.
  • Scholarly papers which demonstrate command of advanced writing.
  • Positive recommendations
  • Statement of purpose which reflects writing ability and goals for pursuing advanced study in nursing.
  • Evidence of graduate course work in concept development and theory (NUR 500, NUR 507) or equivalent.

Interested in one of our Graduate Programs? How to Apply

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