Doctor of Nursing Practice

photo of DNP students

The Post-Master's DNP Program at a Glance

  • Admit Terms: Fall only
  • Credit Requirement: 34-50
  • Enrollment Mode: Hybrid/Blend; students meet for two consecutive days, twice a semester (Friday afternoon and Saturday)
  • Enrollment Level: Part-time study

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a practice doctorate that prepares clinical scholars recognized for outstanding leadership and innovative evidence-based patient/population centered care in nursing and healthcare delivery that improves systems of care and influences patient outcomes.  The program focuses on interprofessional collaboration and developing competencies in quality improvement and safety that lead to enhanced outcomes important to patients, families, providers, and organizations. 

The DNP program is a post-master’s program that admits nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified nurse anesthetists (CRNAs), nurse directors, and nurses focused on informatics.  Note that BSN-prepared nurses interested in becoming nurse anesthetists should review the BSN-DNP website (https://nursing.uth.edu/prospstudent/anesthesia/) offered by the UT-H Nurse Anesthesia program.  The part-time program offers flexibility to accommodate working professionals.

The UTHealth School of Nursing is ranked in the top 5% of graduate nursing program in the United States.  The campus is located in the Texas Medical Center where student enjoy the resources of a distinguished academic health science center within the world’s largest medical center.  The DNP program is the first DNP program in Texas, established in 2006.

The Curriculum

The UTHealth School of Nursing provides program options for nurses who are:

  • Nurse Practitioners/Clinical Nurse Specialists
  • Nurse Executives
  • Nurse Anesthetists
  • Nurse Informaticists

Students attend classes at the Houston campus for two two-day sessions per semester and also engage in online learning.  The CRNA students may choose between a 5-semsters or 8-semester curricular plan.  The nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse executives, and nurse informatics follow an 8 semester curricular plan.  All preceptorship and fellowship experiences are individualized to support the student’s goals and achievement of the national DNP competencies.

Course #Course TitleHours
Year 1 - Fall
N6801 Scholarly Foundations for Advanced Practice 3
N6847 Organizations and Systems Leadership 3
Year 1- Spring
N6807 Evidence Based Practice Principles 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6820 Data Analysis and Evaluation 3
Year 1 - Summer
N6808 Translational Science 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6858 W Information Systems/Technology for the Improvement of Health Care 3
Year 2 - Fall
N6802 Health Policy, Politics, and Ethics 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6851 The Business of Healthcare 2
Year 2 - Spring
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6840 B DNP Preceptorship I for Nurse Practitioners and Clinical Nurse Specialists 2
N6842 A Innovations and Transitions in Healthcare Delivery 2
Year 2 - Summer
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6841 B DNP Preceptorship II for Nurse Practitioners and Clinical Nurse Specialists 2
N6845 Practice Management 2
Year 3 - Fall
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6860 A DNP Seminar I 2
N6860 B DNP Fellowship I 2
Year 3 - Spring
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6870 A DNP Seminar II 2
N6870 B DNP Fellowship II 2
Total 42

Leadership is critical to the redesign and execution of a new healthcare system to meet societal needs for health care. The UTHealth DNP Program prepares nurse managers/directors to shape and influence the preferred future in health care. Graduates of the nurse executive program are prepared for high-level executive leadership positions in organizations and systems to advance the quality and cost effectiveness of care and outcomes for populations and communities through innovative evidence-based practices and resource management.

Course #Course TitleHours
Year 1 - Fall
N6801 Scholarly Foundations for Advanced Practice 3
N6847 Organizations and Systems Leadership 3
Year1 - Spring
N6807 Evidence Based Practice Principles 3
N6820 Data Analysis and Evaluation 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 1 - Summer
N6808 Translational Science 3
N6858 W Information Systems/Technology for the Improvement of Health Care 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Fall
N6851 The Business of Healthcare 2
N6802 Health Policy, Politics, and Ethics 3
N6840 C DNP Preceptorship I for Nurse Executives 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Spring
N6850 Executive Leadership, Human Resources, Delivery Systems, and Teams 2
N6841 C DNP Preceptorship II for Nurse Executives 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Summer
N6852 Organizational Performance Standards, Quality, and Safety 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Fall
N6860 A DNP Seminar I 2
N6860 B DNP Fellowship I for Nurse Executives 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Spring
N6870 A DNP Seminar II 2
N6870 B DNP Fellowship II for Nurse Executives 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Total 42

Nursing informatics is the specialty that integrates nursing science with multiple information and analytical sciences to identify, define, manage and communicate data, information, knowledge and wisdom in nursing practice. The UTHealth DNP curriculum is designed and tailored specifically for nurse informaticists, and is the only program of its kind in the state of Texas.

Course #Course TitleHours
Year 1 - Fall
N6801 Scholarly Foundations for Advanced Practice 3
N6847 Organizations and Systems Leadership 3
Year1 - Spring
N6807 Evidence Based Practice Principles 3
N6820 Data Analysis and Evaluation 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 1 - Summer
N6808 Translational Science 3
N6858W Information Systems/Technology for the Improvement of Health Care 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Fall
N6802 Health Policy, Politics, and Ethics 3
N6851 The Business of Healthcare 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Spring
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6840 I DNP Preceptorship I - Informatics 2
HI6328 W Health Care Delivery in an EHR-Enabled Environment 3
Year 2 - Summer
HI6370 W Advanced Standards and Terminologies in Nursing and HI 3
N6841 I DNP Preceptorship II Informatics 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Fall
N6860 A DNP Seminar I 2
N6860 B DNP Fellowship I 2
HI6301 W Health Data Display 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Spring
N6870 A DNP Seminar II 2
N6870 B DNP Fellowship II 2
HI6340 W Health Information Visualization 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Total 50
Course #Course TitleHours
Year 1 - Fall
N6801 W Scholarly Foundations for Advanced Practice 3
N6847 Organizations and Systems Leadership 3
Year 1 - Spring
N6807 Evidence Based Practice Principles 3
N6820 Data Analysis and Evaluation 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 1 - Summer
N6808 Translational Science 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6858 W Information Systems/Technology for the Improvement of Health Care 3
Year 2 - Fall
N6802 Health Policy, Politics, and Ethics 3
N6860A DNP Seminar I 2
N6860B DNP Fellowship I 2
N6851 The Business of Healthcare 1
Year 2 - Spring
N6870 A DNP Seminar II 2
N6870 B DNP Fellowship II 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Total 34
Course #Course TitleHours
Year 1 - Fall
N6801 W Scholarly Foundations for Advanced Practice 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
N6847 Organizations and Systems Leadership 3
Year 1 - Spring
N6807 Evidence Based Practice Principles 3
N6820 Data Analysis and Evaluation 3
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 1 - Summer
N6808 Translational Science 3
N6858 W Information Systems/Technology for the Improvement of Health Care 3
Year 2 - Fall
N6802 Health Policy, Politics, and Ethics 3
N6851 The Business of Healthcare 1
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Spring
N6860B DNP Fellowship I 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 2 - Summer
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Fall
N6860A DNP Seminar I 2
N6870 B DNP Fellowship II 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Year 3 - Spring
N6870 A DNP Seminar II 2
N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio Advisement 1*
Total 34

* There are 3 scheduled N6830 Clinical Scholarship Portfolio (CSP) Advisement credits scheduled in the degree plan. However, a student may need to be enrolled in N6830 during other semesters depending on the need for assistance from the advisor for work on the DNP Project or other CSP components. The student and advisor will determine need to be enrolled in N6830 each semester

Note: if a student has taken N6807 in their master’s program, it meets the requirement for the course in the DNP program. 

Course numbers ending in “W” denote courses that are web-based or mainly online that may require some campus visits.

Course numbers ending in “D” denote courses that are taught through distance education and include a distance education fee.

Course numbers ending in “B” denote courses that are clinical and include additional fees.

Consult the catalog for course descriptions, details about preceptorship and fellowship experiences, methods of teaching, and prerequisites. The University of Texas School of Nursing at Houston and The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston reserve the right to withdraw courses at any time, to change fees or tuition, calendar, curriculum, degree requirements, graduation procedures, and any other requirements affecting students. Changes will become effective whenever the proper authorities so determine and will apply to both prospective students and those already enrolled.

The Clinical Scholarship Portfolio (CSP)

The Clinical Scholarship Portfolio (CSP) is the DNP equivalent to a dissertation. It is a collection of required components that demonstrates a student’s scholarship as a clinical scholar practicing at the highest level of advanced practice. It provides evidence of competency in all domains of DNP practice.  The CSP includes a major DNP Project, comprehensive cases studies, and other examples of scholarly work related to the competencies outlined in the American Association of College of Nursing (AACN) DNP Essentials. 

Student-Centered Support

Each DNP student is assigned an advisor/faculty mentor at the time of enrollment in the DNP program.  The advisor is selected based on clinical expertise and interest compatible with the student’s area of interest.  The advisor works with the student throughout the DNP program.

Scholarships and Financial Aid 

The School of Nursing is proud of its commitment to doctoral education through the offering of merit and need-based scholarships and grants. The application process is competitive and begins during the application review cycle. In Fall 2016, the School is pleased to announce that it will offer two full-tuition PARTNERS awards for new students enrolling in the NP/CNS and Informatics curriculum paths. Additionally, nine students who are enrolled as a part of the Fall 2016 cohort are eligible to receive an $8,000 Dunn Foundation scholarship.

Students interested in a DNP scholarship are encouraged to submit the UTHealth School of Nursing Scholarship Application after they have applied for admission. 

Advantages of the Program

  • Access to resources and experts in the largest medical center in the world
  • On-line courses with concentrated on-campus class time
  • Ability to pursue your degree while maintaining full time employment
  • The DNP project may be conducted in your work environment or with community partners
  • Students have access to clinical partnerships with Magnet and other high level clinical facilities
  • Nationally recognized faculty with expertise and broad experience in advanced clinical practice, leadership, informatics, and quality improvement and safety
  • Student have an advisor/mentor throughout the DNP program

DNP Program Administration

Joanne V Hickey, PhD, RN, ACNP, FAAN, FCCM

Coordinator, Doctor of Nursing Practice Program (Email)

Candiance E Duplessis, BA

Administrative Coordinator, Doctoral Programs (Email)

The University of Texas School of Nursing at Houston and The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston reserve the right to withdraw courses at any time, to change fees or tuition, calendar, curriculum, degree requirements, graduation procedures, and any other requirements affecting students. Changes will become effective whenever the proper authorities so determine and will apply to both prospective students and those already enrolled.