Feb 23, 2024  
2019-2020 Course Catalog 
2019-2020 Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice M.S. to D.N.P.

The University of Saint Joseph’s highly regarded Nursing program offers a rigorous academic curriculum combined with clinical, real-world experience. Our Doctor of Nursing Practice program will prepare you for professional advancement and leadership roles in managing the clinical care of patients, improving health care systems and clinical education.

Graduates of the program will practice at the highest level using advanced knowledge from Nursing and other disciplines to improve health outcomes. This will be accomplished by educating students to critically analyze the effects of health policy and current evidence-based research as it relates to clinical practice.

The Doctor of Nursing program at the University of Saint Joseph is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K St. NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202.887.6791.

Program Outcomes

  • Apply scientific knowledge, evaluation methods and quality improvement strategies to advance evidence based clinical practice and improve health care systems and outcomes.
  • Lead organizations and systems as a practice scholar through the application of quality improvement strategies, systems thinking, and information technology.
  • Advance patient and population health outcomes through scholarship, advocacy, leadership, and communication/collaboration with multidisciplinary teams.
  • Influence public policy to minimize health disparities and promote access to quality care. 


Admissions requirements

Submit an application, available at www.usj.edu/grad-application include:

  • $50 non-refundable application fee
  • Official sealed Master’s (M.S., Nursing) transcript from a regionally and nationally accredited institution with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.2
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal essay: How will a DNP degree from USJ help you to meet your professional goals
  • Immunization records
  • Nursing supplemental health form
  • Copy of valid nursing license
  • Certified background check
  • Certification form documenting previous master’s-level supervised clinical hours signed by the previous school’s program director
  • Copy of valid APRN license if applicable

A comprehensive curriculum

Using the America Association of Colleges of Nursing Essentials for Doctoral Education, the D.N.P. program at the University of Saint Joseph prepares the graduate in:

  • Scientific underpinnings of practice
  • Organizational and systems leadership for quality improvement and systems thinking
  • Clinical scholarship and analytical methods for evidence-based practice
  • Information systems and technology for patient care
  • Health care policy for advocacy in health care
  • Interprofessional collaboration for improving patient and population health outcomes
  • Clinical prevention and population health to improve our nation’s health and advanced Nursing practice

M.S. to D.N.P students pursuing nurse practitioner certification will have clinical experiences during their program. Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner students are offered clinical experiences in community and hospital settings, whereas Family Nurse Practitioner students will have experiences solely in outpatient settings. Upon completion of required clinical hours, students are eligible to sit for the national certification examination through the American Association of Nurse Practitioners or the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Continuation Requirements

  • Students must earn a B minus or higher in doctoral courses to progress in the DNP program.
  • Students who earn less than a B minus will be placed on probation and reviewed by the Graduate Admission and Progression Committee to assess standing in the program.
  • A student must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 in graduate coursework to be in good academic standing at the graduate level.
  • If at any time a student’s GPA falls below 3.0 or if the student earns less than a B minus in any course, the department chair and program director will be notified and the student will be placed on Academic Probation. The DNP program director will notify the student of his/her academic probation status.
  • The student will remain on academic probation until the GPA is raised to or above 3.0.
  • Student will be granted two semesters or six credits to achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better.
  • If a student on probation is not able to raise their GPA to 3.0 after two semesters, the student will be dismissed from the program.
  • A student who earns grades of C or below in two or more courses will be dismissed from the program.
  • A student who earns a D or F in any course will be dismissed from the program.
  • Students who are on dual track in DNP and one of the NP tracks must maintain good academic standing in both. Withdrawal or dismissal from the DNP program will result in automatic dismissal from the NP program as well.
  • Students on dual tracks who are unsuccessful in either of the NP programs will be reviewed by the DNP director and the DNP program committee to determine status in the DNP program.
  • Good academic standing does not automatically ensure continuation in the DNP program. Please see Graduate Academic Probation and Dismissal Policy  for more information. The university  reserves  the right to exclude from further enrollment any graduate student whose conduct is deemed improper or prejudicial (inclusive of academic integrity issues) to  the best  interests of  the university.