Doctor of Nursing Practice

Program Description

*NEW* Information regarding admission can be found under the Admission tab.

Wright State University College of Nursing and Health, in a consortium with the University of Toledo College of Nursing, offers a joint, online, post-master’s DNP program. The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) graduate is prepared to lead in the transformation of the health care system. By translating findings into practice and tracking outcomes at the individual, systems, and population levels, the DNP will ensure quality and safety. These same skills will also position the DNP to lead policy efforts in the broader health care arena. Nurses prepared as DNPs are the health care leaders of tomorrow. DNP Graduation.jpg

We currently offer a full-time or part-time individualized program of study to meet the needs of each student. The 36 semester hour curriculum includes eleven courses focusing on nursing knowledge and practice. In accordance with AACN recommendations for 1000 academically supervised post-BSN clinical hours to earn a DNP degree, 520 hours of academically supervised practicums in clinical practice or leadership are included in the program. All students will be required to document their previous graduate level clinical hours. Individualized programs of study will be developed to assure compliance with the 1000 hour minimum requirement.

Course assignments emphasize skill development and the operational use of knowledge in complex practice settings, including:

  • Population-based intervention (assessing target populations, writing proposals)
  • Marketing and entrepreneurship (marketing strategies, financial analysis, resource development)
  • Systems and organizations (organizational assessment, healthcare financing & management)
  • Quality management and performance improvement (performance benchmarks & tools)
  • Evidence-based practice (appraising evidence, intervention design, evaluation of outcomes, dissemination through written, verbal and online presentations)
  • Information management and technology (databases, patient care technology, workflow analysis)
  • Health policy


The post-master’s DNP at Wright State University and the University of Toledo offer a choice of two concentrations: direct care advanced practice nurses (APRNs, CNM, and CRNA) or indirect care/leadership (Administrators, Clinical Nurse Leaders, Educators, or Public Health).



We are sorry to inform you that the DNP Consortium between Wright State University and the University of Toledo, the first DNP program in the state, will be closing, and therefore has suspended admissions. This has been a wonderful partnership, but both institutions are moving to stand alone programs. The University of Toledo already has a BSN-DNP program and is currently developing a post-master’s –DNP track.  Wright State University is currently developing a new MS-DNP program. The effective date of closure, pending Ohio Department of Higher Education approval is August, 2019. This will allow all currently matriculating students the opportunity for graduation from the Consortium.

The faculty at Wright State University are hard at work on a new, innovative, cutting edge curriculum for our DNP program. We will need to seek approval from faculty in the college, faculty at the university level, and finally the Board of Trustees. Once approved here, it will go to the Ohio Department of Higher Education for approval. We anticipate, if all goes well, taking students in Fall of 2018. Students that are admitted to the new program must be matriculating for one year before we can invite CCNE for an accreditation visit. We believe that visit will occur early 2020.

New programs and experiences are on the horizon; it is an exciting time to be at Wright State University!


To be eligible to apply to this graduate nursing program, applicants must meet the following criteria:


Be a master's prepared nurse, having earned a MS or MSN in nursing from an accredited institution with a cumulative grade point average of 3.3 or higher on a 4.0 scale for your graduate work


Be a Registered Nurse with an unencumbered license


Complete a graduate level advanced multivariate statistics course with a grade of B or better within five (5) years of enrolling in the Applied Nursing Research course offered during the second term of the program.


Apply to the Wright State Graduate School.

The application to the Graduate School must contain:

  • Official transcripts from all colleges attended
  • Three letters of recommendation (Do not use the recommendation form on the Graduate School page). One letter must be from a faculty member in major area of concentration from master's program.
  • Five page statement of goals related to personal intentions for DNP education, including a topic of interest for completing the evidence-based practice project. The goals statement is to be submitted in a document separate from the application form. The short goals statement on the application form will not suffice.
  • Copy of your resume / CV

Submit the following to the program director:

  • Copy of appropriate APRN credentials for the state where you plan to conduct clinical experiences (eg: COA or national certification)
  • Documentation of graduate level supervised clinical hours
  • Verification of Prior Academic Clinical Hours (pdf) from Master's degree-granting institution. Students who have fewer than 480 documented academically supervised clinical hours will be required to supplement their program of study with additional clinical hours. An individualized program of study will be organized to allow for a total of 1000 graduate level clinical hours (Master's plus DNP) at the time of graduation. These clinical hours will require registration for additional semester hours beyond the basic program of study.

Provide evidence of no criminal history record on file from both a Federal Bureau of Investigation, an Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation and (if applicable) the state in which you reside for background check. Please be aware that background checks may take up to 30 days to process.  It is in your benefit to complete the background check one month prior to the College of Nursing and Health application deadline. Background checks can be done in the Educational Resource Center at 116 Allyn Hall. The results must be sent to Zane Jacks, College of Nursing and Health, 160 UH, Wright State University, 3640 Col. Glenn Hwy, Dayton, OH 45435. Information on the background check can be found here (pdf).

Applications are due April 1. They will be reviewed and interviews scheduled in April with decisions made in early May.

Keep in mind that it takes 2-6 weeks to process an application in the Graduate School. Once all your application materials have been received, you will be contacted to interview with the Program Director.


On-line classes will be a mixture of synchronous and asynchronous activities and will vary depending on the structure of the course. Synchronous on-line classes will generally be scheduled for evening hours.  There will be a mandatory on-campus orientation day prior to the first class in the sequence. This orientation day will occur in the summer prior to the first day of classes.

Sample Plan of Study

Term I - Fall

  • NUR 8001 Scientific Basis of Nursing Practice - 3 credit hours
  • NUR 8008 IT in Nursing & Health Care - 3 credit hours

Term II - Spring

  • NUR 8003 Applied Nursing Research - 3 credit hours
  • NUR 8002 Population Health - 3 credit hours

Term III - Fall

  • NUR 8004 Org & Systems Leadership in Health Care - 3 credit hours (40 hours clinical)
  • NUR 8005 Project Seminar - 3 credit hours

Term IV - Spring

  • NUR 8006 Marketing & Entrepreneurial Activity in Complex Health Care - 3 credit hours
  • NUR 8007 Quality Mgt & Performance Improvement in HC Orgs. - 3 credit hours (40 hours clinical)

Term V - Fall

  • NUR 8101 Evidence Based Nursing Practice in Direct Care - 3 credit hours (80 hours clinical) OR
  • NUR 8201 Evidence Based Leadership in Complex Health Systems - 3 credit hours (80 hours clinical)

Term VI - Spring

  • NUR 8099 Doctoral Project - 3 credit hours
  • NUR 8102 Final Practicum: Patient Care - 6 credit hours (360 hours clinical) OR
    NUR 8202 Final Practicum: Leadership - 6 credit hours (360 hours clinical)

The Doctoral Project course (NUR 8099) and final practicum courses (NUR 8102 or 8202) can be taken as variable credits with advisement from project chair.

Total Program Credits 36 Semester credit hours

Course Descriptions

NUR 8001

Course Title: Scientific Basis of Nursing Practice (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course examines nursing science from a broad range of perspectives. The emphasis is on identification and analysis of nursing phenomena, use of nursing science to manage phenomena, and evaluation of outcomes.

NUR 8002

Course Title: Population Health (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course uses epidemiologic models to analyze and construct interventions for health care delivery systems. The focus is on safe, quality, culturally-appropriate advanced nursing practice activities to meet emerging world needs.

NUR 8003

Course Title: Applied Nursing Research (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course builds on knowledge of research and clinical practice with emphasis on evidence-based practice. Students learn to critically examine and apply nursing research within the practice setting.

NUR 8004

Course Title: Org and Systems Leadership in Health Care (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: Examines application of organizational and leadership theories/strategies to assess process/outcomes in complex practice settings, health care organizations, and communities with a focus on the APN role in analyzing clinical patterns and issues.

NUR 8005

Course Title: Project Seminar (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course provides a forum to articulate and explore advanced nursing practice roles and responsibilities. The focus will be on leading nursing practice in patient advocacy, teaching, collaboration, and the design and
provision of care.

NUR 8006

Course Title: Marketing and Entrepreneurial Activities in Complex Health Care (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course examines marketing and entrepreneurial strategies for advanced nursing practice in complex health care systems.  The focus is on creating and evaluating marketing plans and entrepreneurial activities.

NUR 8007

Course Title: Quality Management and Performance Improvement in Health Care Organizations (3 credit hours, 40 hours clinical)
Catalog Description: Examines the principles and practice of quality management in health care organizations and clinical performance in care delivery and outcomes.  Focus is on the role and accountability of the advanced practice nurse working with a collaborative team for maintaining patient safety and improving quality of care.

NUR 8008

Course Title: IT in Nursing and Health Care (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: Systematic assessment of clinical and administrative information needs of health care systems. Examines the technology and strategies needed to support patients, nurses, and health care delivery in dynamic environmental systems.

NUR 8099

Course Title: Doctoral Project (3 credit hours)
Catalog Description: This course is a guided, independent project applying the evidence-based practice process to improve patient outcomes, health care delivery, nursing practice, and/or health policy.

NUR 8101

Course Title: Evidence Based Nursing Practice in Direct Care (3 credit hours, 80 hours clinical)
Catalog Description: This seminar course focuses on nursing management of complex patients, diagnostic reasoning, translation of evidence into practice, and building intra- and inter- professional interactive models to meet patient needs.

NUR 8102

Course Title: Final Practicum: Direct Care (6 credit hours, 360 hours clinical)
Catalog Description: Individually precepted practicum requiring advanced nursing practice with individuals and groups including seminars that facilitate synthesis and application of all prior learning for evidence-based practice. Includes 360 hours of supervised clinical.

NUR 8201

Course Title: Evidence-based Leadership in Complex Health Systems (3 credit hours, 80 hours clinical)
Catalog Description: This course examines evidence practices in administrative health care settings. The focus is on examining current status and creating and evaluating innovative administrative practices based on best practices. Competencies include model application for financing and clinical outcomes.

NUR 8202

Course Title: Final Practicum: Leadership (6 credit hours, 360 hours clinical)
Catalog Description: Individually precepted practicum requiring leadership and practice at the aggregate/systems/organizational level of health care. Includes required seminars that facilitate application, synthesis, and evaluation of prior learning in applied practice. Includes 360 hours of supervised clinical.

Program Outcomes

The DNP graduate will:

  1. Synthesize knowledge derived from a scientific foundation in order to demonstrate expertise in advanced clinical nursing practice to improve delivery of care
  2. Demonstrate continuous quality improvement in patient care situations while providing leadership in clinical decision making through use of information systems and technology for the improvement and transformation of health care
  3. Use clinical scholarship and analytical methods to implement safe, quality improvement in administration of patient care
  4. Encourage interprofessional collaboration and teamwork to enhance and improve population health outcomes
  5. Engage in influencing the development and implementation of health policy that provides an interface between practice, research and policy development

Program Accreditation

The baccalaureate degree in nursing, master's degree in nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice at Wright State University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education ( Accredited.jpeg

Contact Information

Deb Poling PhD, FNP-BC, CNE
Title: Assistant Dean for Graduate Programs

Phone: (937) 775-4684
Fax: (937) 775-4571

Stacey Callahan, B.A.
Title: Program Coordinator

Phone: (937) 775-3954
Fax: (937) 775-4571

College of Nursing and Health
(937) 775-3131
Fax: (937) 775-4571