Choose the Best Online BSN to DNP Program for You

Nurses who want to launch a career in advanced practice nursing have a couple of educational paths that they can pursue to get them there. One option is to earn a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree. This terminal degree focuses on evidence-based practice and may prepare you to provide quality care in roles such as a Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nurse Midwife, Nurse Practitioner, and even a Nurse Educator.

To qualify for admission for most DNP programs, you must be a registered nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Some schools may require a year of nursing experience, but many do not.

Online BSN to DNP degree programs have made pursuing a DNP degree especially convenient for full-time professionals and individuals with personal or family-related obligations. As an online DNP student, you enjoy flexibility in scheduling and can complete assignments from the comfort of your home.

Even though a Master of Science in Nursing or MSN is the minimum educational requirement for advanced nursing practice roles, a DNP program may open doors for you that your graduate degree can’t. In addition to opportunities for advancement within the nursing field, doctoral-trained nurses can earn higher salaries.

Overview of Online BSN to DNP Programs

Online DNP programs are growing in number and popularity. It’s important to identify schools that offer programs that fit your career goals and current lifestyle. Here are a number of schools to consider:

Abilene Christian University

Program Name: Online BSN to DNP Pathway - Executive Leadership Track
Location: Abilene, Texas
Specialization/Concentrations: Executive Leadership
Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: 57 Credit Hours
Clinical Practice Hours: N/A
Length of Program: 38 Months

Admissions Requirements:

  • Official transcripts from the accredited colleges or universities
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Two professional recommendation letters
  • A 500-word purpose statement
  • Professional CV or resume
  • Proof of U.S.registered nurse licensure
  • Completed undergraduate statistics course with a "C" or better

Learn more about the Online BSN to DNP Pathway program at Abilene Christian University.

Baylor University

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Executive Nurse Leadership
Location: Waco, Texas
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
  • Nurse-Midwifery
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: 75-89 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 500-1,125 Hours
Length of Program: 3 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from a regionally accredited School of Nursing
  • GPA of 3.0 or above (BSN)
  • Current unencumbered RN license
  • One year experience in preferred track
  • Current CV or resume

Learn more about the BSN to DNP online programs at Baylor University.

Bradley University

Program Name: Online DNP-Family Nurse Practitioner Track
Location: Peoria, Illinois
Specialization/Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner
Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 83 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,050 Hours
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from regionally accredited nursing program
  • Proof of a current nursing license

Learn more about the BSN to DNP-FNP program at Bradley University.

Creighton University

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Primary and Acute Care Nurse Practitioners (Dual)
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Across the Lifespan

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 68-75 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from accredited school
  • Active, unencumbered RN license with Nebraska eligibility
  • Minimum of 2,000 hours of professional nursing work experience
  • Minimum of 4,000 hours of experience in level III NICU for neonatal track
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement
  • Completion of undergraduate statistics course

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at Creighton University.

Florida State University

Program Name: Online DNP Degree Program
Location: Tallahassee, Florida
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 76-79 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1035 Hours
Length of Program: Within 7 Years of Matriculation

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN or MSN degree from accredited program and a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Official transcripts
  • GRE or MAT scores
  • Unencumbered and unrestricted RN license
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Current CV or resume

Learn more about the Online DNP Degree Programs at Florida State University.

Fort Hays State University

Program Name: BSN to DNP Program
Location: Hays, Kansas
Specialization/Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner
Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: 75 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Official transcripts
  • BSN or MSN from an accredited program
  • Minimum GPA of 3.25 required based on MSN degree and minimum GPA of 3.0 based on BSN degree
  • Three letters of reference
  • Resume
  • Personal Statement
  • Personal or virtual interview with faculty

Learn more about the BSN to DNP Program at Fort Hays State University.

Georgetown University - Sponsored Program

Program Name: Online BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program

Specializations/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Dual Nurse Midwife/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 69-74 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,000 - 1,200 Hours
Length of Program:  33 months

Application Requirements:

  • Professional Resume or CV
  • Official academic Transcripts
  • Personal Statement
  • Live Recorded Interview
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores if applicable

Admissions Requirements:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree or CNL/entry-level MSN from a CCNE- or ACEN-accredited program
  • Hold a current U.S. registered nurse (RN) license
  • Have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA and a 3.0 science GPA
  • Have successfully completed a college level three-credit course in statistics within the last five years with a grade of C or better
  • One year of full-time registered nursing experience required for all applicants. AG-ACNP requires at least one year of full-time experience in an intensive care unit, emergency department, telemetry unit, or progressive care unit.
Learn more about the Online BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program from Georgetown University.

Sponsored Nursing Program

George Washington University

Program Name: Post-bachelor’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program
Location: Washington, DC
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 81 Credit Hours
Clinical Practice Hours: 1000 Hours
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from regionally accredited college or university
  • GPA of at least 3.0
  • Official transcripts
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Current resume
  • Personal statement
  • Active and unencumbered nursing licensure

Learn more about the Post-bachelor’s DNP program at George Washington University.

Georgia Southern University

Program Name: Post-BSN to DNP Program
Location: Statesboro, Georgia
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: 77 Credit Hours
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,350 Hours
Length of Program: N/A

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from accredited college with a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Undergraduate course in statistics with grade of “C” or better
  • Undergraduate health appraisal/physical assessment course with grade of “C” or better
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • American Heart Association Level C (2 person-BLS) CPR certification
  • Georgia RN licensure
  • Resume or CV
  • One year of full-time registered nurse (RN) clinical nursing experience

Learn more about the Post-BSN to DNP program at Georgia Southern University.

Idaho State University

Program Name: BSN to DNP Degree Programs
Location: Pocatello, Idaho
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 78 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 3 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BS or BSN from accredited program
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Completed application
  • Valid and current unencumbered Registered Nursing license
  • Pre admission interview
  • Mandatory attendance at the orientation for the DNP program

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at Idaho State University.

Jacksonville State University

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Jacksonville, Alabama
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: N/A
Clinical Practice Hours: N/A
Length of Program: 12-15 Semesters

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN degree from an accredited institution
  • Unencumbered U.S. RN license
  • Overall GPA of 3.00 or higher
  • Three professional references
  • Professional interview may be required
  • Writing sample

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at Jacksonville State University.

Loyola University – New Orleans

Program Name: BSN to DNP – Family Nurse Practitioner
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Specialization/Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner
Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 78 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,260 Hours
Length of Program: 3 - 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Unencumbered RN licensure
  • Minimum of 1800 hours of recent nursing practice
  • A statement of purpose

Learn more about the BSN to DNP – Family Nurse Practitioner program at Loyola University – New Orleans.

Maryville University

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Waco, Texas
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 68-77 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: As little as 40 months

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN degree from a CCNE-, ACEN- or NLNAC accredited program
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.25 or above
  • Current RN license
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Resume or CV
  • GRE not required

Learn more about the BSN to DNP programs at Maryville University.

Montana State University

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Degree
Location: Bozeman, Montana
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family/Individual Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: N/A
Clinical Practice Hours: N/A
Length of Program: N/A

Admissions Requirements:

  • One year of clinical experience is preferred for the DNP degree
  • Montana residency preferred
  • Undergraduate and graduate minimum GPA of 3.0.
  • Baccalaureate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited program
  • Undergraduate courses in physical assessment, community/public health, research, statistics, and an undergraduate psych/mental health course for DNP
  • (Psych/Mental Health)
  • Current unencumbered RN licensure
  • Recommendation from the College of Nursing admissions committee

Learn more about the DNP degree at Montana State University.

Nebraska Methodist College

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 75 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1080 Hours
Length of Program: 3 - 5 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from accredited program
  • Undergraduate completion of: statistics, undergraduate health assessment, research, anatomy and physiology, undergraduate pharmacology, microbiology, chemistry, community nursing, pathophysiology
  • Current unencumbered RN licensure
  • Non-Nebraska residents must meet State Authorization

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at Nebraska Methodist College.

New Mexico State University

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 70 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,024 Hours
Length of Program: 3 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Nursing with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or better
  • Current unencumbered U.S. RN license
  • Undergraduate or graduate level statistics course

Learn more about the DNP program at New Mexico State University.

Saint Mary’s College

Program Name: DNP Degree Program
Location: Dame, Indiana
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 77 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,090 Hours
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN degree from a accredited institution, at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA
  • A recent statistics course
  • Unencumbered RN license or eligibility for RN licensure

Learn more about the DNP degree program at Saint Mary’s College.

Seton Hall University

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Online
Location: South Orange, New Jersey
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Advanced Practice Nursing
  • Health Systems Administration

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 73-79 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Nursing degree from accredited BSN or MSN program with a minimum of 3.0 GPA
  • Résumé or curriculum vitae
  • Personal statement
  • Reference letters
  • Official transcripts
  • Professional U.S. nursing licensure
  • TOEFL scores (if applicable)

Learn more about the DNP Online program at Seton Hall University.

Southeastern Louisiana University

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Hammond, Louisiana
Specialization/Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner
Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 67 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,110 Hours
Length of Program: 2.5 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from accredited nursing program
  • Transcripts
  • Resume
  • Evidence of at least one year of clinical experience as a registered nurse
  • GPA of 2.7 for all undergraduate work
  • GRE Scores
  • Evidence of a valid, unencumbered Louisiana RN license

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at Southeastern Louisiana University.

Texas Christian University

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 64-67 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1000 Hours
Length of Program: 3-4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from an accredited school or university
  • Current unencumbered licensure in the state of Texas or the state in which practicum coursework will occur
  • Current CPR certification and immunizations
  • Official transcript from all colleges or universities attended
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 (preferred)
  • TOEFL and TSE [if applicable]
  • Resume
  • Personal statement
  • Three professional references
  • Interview

Learn more about the BSN to DNP programs at Texas Christian University.

Thomas Jefferson University

Program Name: Post-BSN to DNP
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology – Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology – Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Community Systems Administration
  • Family/Individual Across the Lifespan
  • Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
  • Nursing Informatics
  • Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Women’s Health Gender Related Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 69 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4-6 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Essay outlining goals and objectives and area of interest
  • Copy of current RN license, CRNP license (if applicable) and specialty certification (if applicable)

Learn more about the Post-BSN to DNP programs at Thomas Jefferson University.

University of Alabama

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health/Family Nurse Practitioner (Dual)

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 70-91 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,080 - 1,620 Hours
Length of Program: 4 - 5 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Current unencumbered RN licensure in a state approved for admission.
  • Master’s degree in nursing in an advanced nursing practice area (nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, nurse midwife, or nurse anesthetist) from a regionally and CCNE or NLN accredited school of nursing
  • Advanced practice national certification or eligibility to sit for advanced practice national certification
  • Minimum GPA 3.0

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at University of Alabama.

University of Arkansas

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Fayetteville, Arkansas
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute-Care Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 78 Credit Hours
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • RN degree from accredited program in nursing
  • 3.0 GPA in previous nursing program
  • Current unencumbered U.S. RN license
  • Resume
  • Candidate interview
  • Two letters of recommendation

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at University of Arkansas.

University of Connecticut

Program Name: BS to DNP Program
Location: Storrs, Connecticut
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 72-75 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: N/A
Length of Program: 4-6 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Eligibility for licensure as an RN in the state of Connecticut
  • Cumulative undergraduate minimum GPA of 3.00.
  • Three reference letters
  • Essay questions
  • Any published works or scholarly papers.
  • Personal interview

Learn more about the BS to DNP programs at the University of Connecticut.

University of Florida

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Gainesville, Florida
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 75-78 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,008 Hours
Length of Program: 2.5 - 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN degree with GPA of 3.0 or above from accredited program
  • GRE Scores
  • Current licensure or eligibility for licensure to practice as an RN in Florida
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Resume or CV

Learn more about the BSN to DNP program at the University of Florida.

University of Michigan – Flint

Program Name: BSN to DNP
Location: Flint, Michigan
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 67-78 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN from a regionally accredited college/university with undergraduate GPA of 3.2
  • Current unencumbered RN license
  • At least one year of RN experience (preferred)
  • GRE not required

Learn more about the BSN to DNP programs at the University of Michigan.

University of Nevada – Reno

Program Name: Nursing DNP from BSN
Location: Reno, Nevada
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time
Coursework Credits: 72-76 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: Varies
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Undergraduate minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Baccalaureate degree from accredited nursing school.
  • Current, unencumbered U.S. licensure to practice as a RN and eligible to practice as an RN in Nevada
  • Statement of intent
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Resume
  • Successful completion of a graduate level applied statistics course

Learn more about the Nursing DNP from BSN program at University of Nevada – Reno.

University of South Carolina

Program Name: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Nurse Executive Leadership
  • Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 73-74 hours
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,000 Hours
Length of Program: 6 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN degree from accredited program
  • GPA of 3.0
  • Three letters of reference
  • Personal goal statement
  • Evidence of writing competence
  • Current CV or Resume
  • Current unencumbered, active RN licensure in the state where clinical experiences will occur
  • Current BLS certification
  • Interview with nursing graduate faculty

Learn more about the BSN to DNP programs at University of South Carolina.

University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

Program Name: BSN-entry DNP
Location: Miami, Florida
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Nurse Executive

Enrollment Options: N/A
Coursework Credits: 64-71 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,000-1,035 Hours
Length of Program: 40 Months

Admissions Requirements:

  • BSN with cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Official Transcripts
  • Unrestricted/unencumbered RN license in the state of residence
  • Two professional references
  • Professional resume or CV
  • Career goal statement

Learn more about the BSN-entry DNP program at University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.

Washburn University

Program Name: DNP program
Location: Topeka, Kansas
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Enrollment Options: N/A - Fast Track Option Available
Coursework Credits: 70-76 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1,020 - 1,230 Hours
Length of Program: 4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Three References
  • Resume
  • Official transcripts
  • GPA of 3.25 in nursing coursework (preferred)
  • Completion of graduate inferential statistics course
  • Copy of current licensure in the state of residence as an RN

Learn more about the BSN to DNP programs at Washburn University.

Winona State University

Program Name: Post-Baccalaureate DNP Program
Location: Rochester, MN
Specialization/Concentrations:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Nursing Leadership: Nursing and Organizational Leadership
  • Nursing Leadership: Practice and Leadership Innovations

Enrollment Options: Full-Time or Part-Time
Coursework Credits: 74 Credits
Clinical Practice Hours: 1020-1260 Hours
Length of Program: 3-4 Years

Admissions Requirements:

  • Baccalaureate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited graduate program in nursing
  • Undergraduate coursework in physical assessment
  • Undergraduate courses in nursing research and statistics
  • Transcripts of past education with GPA of 3.0 or greater
  • Minimum of one year clinical nursing experience (recommended)
  • Current, unencumbered RN
  • Three references
  • Statement of professional goals
  • Resume

Learn more about the Post-Baccalaureate DNP program at Winona State University.

Why Choose a BSN to DNP Program?

There are many reasons to choose a BSN to DNP program, from job market trends and demands to professional and financial goals.

  • Advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) play a pivotal role in today’s health care system. That will not change over the next couple of years. In fact, employment of nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives is expected to grow 26% from 2018 to 2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. These types of APRNs will be key in caring for the aging, baby-boom population.
  • Job growth will likely lead to job competition, so you’ll want to stand out in the pool of qualified applicants. A BSN to DNP program could give you an edge. BSN to DNP programs may help equip you with the skills and knowledge to evaluate health care needs from the individual to the organizational level and improve outcomes for both patient populations. Your DNP education may also teach you how to interpret nursing theory in a unique way. As a DNP-level practitioner, you may also work to improve safety and quality standards within various health care settings.
  • A DNP program may be a good fit for you if you’re looking to make a positive impact in specialty areas of nursing, by conducting research, translating that research into practice, and analyzing practice data and outcomes. If you have your eye on a leadership role within a policy-making organization, a DNP degree could help you meet your career goals.
  • Pursuing the BSN to DNP track may help prepare you for financial and professional success down the line, but it is also important to consider how the degree program can benefit you in the present. The BSN to DNP program is particularly useful to BSN graduates who don’t have the time or money to put into enrolling in an MSN program prior to earning their doctorate. The program is designed to build upon the knowledge and skills you acquire as a bachelor student.

Education Requirements for a BSN to DNP Program

Admissions requirements for BSN to DNP programs vary widely. In order to apply for a BSN to DNP program, you need to be a registered nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from an accredited institution. BSN to DNP programs typically require at least a 3.0 GPA, but certain institutions will make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

In addition to your academic-related application materials, you will likely need to craft a personal statement outlining your career goals, provide two to three references, and submit a resume or curriculum vitae. A year of clinical nursing experience is recommended, but not always required.

BSN to DNP Curriculum

Coursework for a particular BSN to DNP program will vary based on specialization and may be integrated into clinical practice. Examples of courses you are likely to take include:

  • Advanced Physiology
  • Health Care Delivery Systems
  • Health Care Policy
  • Advanced Pharmacology
  • Advanced Diagnostics
  • Advanced Research Methods and Quantitative Analysis
  • Information Systems and Technology in Health Care

Typical online BSN to DNP programs range from 70 to 100 credit hours and can involve over 1,000 clinical hours, with some variation based on school or your chosen specialty. Students usually complete the program in three to four years when engaging in study full time.

What Can I Do With a BSN to DNP?

Nurses who successfully complete a BSN to DNP program are qualified for a number of leadership roles within health care and academia including the following, and more:

  • Chief Nursing Officer
  • Nurse Administrator
  • Vice President of Nursing at a hospital or medical organization
  • Director of Education
  • Clinical Nurse Educator

Salary for DNP Level Nurses

Reliable DNP salary data can be hard to come by because of the broad scope of practice and roles DNP graduates can occupy. But to get an idea of how much you can make as an advanced practice nursing professional with a DNP, examine pay data for specific roles.

The median annual salary for nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives was $113,930 in May 2018, according to the BLS. The top 10% of them earned upwards of $182,750.

BSN to DNP Program Accreditation

When considering whether to enroll in an online BSN to DNP program, look for those that are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). Schools and programs that have been accredited are an indication that the education they are providing meets rigorous standards for innovative, evidence-based practice. There are hundreds of accredited online and campus-based DNP programs in the U.S., with many more in the works. Be sure to do your research to find an accredited program that fits your career ambitions.

FAQs

If you’re considering the BSN to DNP track, here are a few questions you can ask yourself to help you determine whether it’s the best fit for you:

What is a BSN to DNP?

A BSN to DNP program provides an education in nursing practice and theory along with research methods to nurses looking to advance their careers. Within each program are specialization tracks, including adult gerontology, family nurse practitioner, nursing leadership, and psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner.

How long are BSN to DNP programs?

Accelerated online BSN to DNP programs, where students can complete their degree in as little as 20 months. Typically, BSN to DNP programs take two to four years to complete, based on whether they are studying part time or full time.

Is a BSN to DNP Degree more competitive than a DNP degree?

A BSN to DNP degree is a DNP degree but designed for nurses who already hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and who are bypassing the intermediate step of a Master of Science in Nursing. However, some of these programs do award a MSN by way of the BSN to DNP degree. These programs build on a nurse’s existing experience and education with distinct specialized tracks.

What is the difference between a BSN, MSN, and DNP?

A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is an undergraduate degree that prepares you to work as a registered nurse. A Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is a two-year graduate degree that allows nurses to work in more advanced practice roles, including as nurse midwives, nurse anesthetists, and clinical nurse specialists. A Doctor of Nursing practice (DNP) is a terminal degree (the highest degree a nurse can earn) that requires an additional two years if one holds an MSN and prepares nurses for leadership roles in health care systems and academic institutions.

Do you need a BSN for a BSN to DNP program?

One of the primary requirements for a BSN to DNP program is a BSN degree from a CCNE- or NLNAC-accredited program, typically with a GPA of at least 3.0.

Can I get a DNP after my BSN?

BSN to DNP programs allow you to accelerate from a BSN to a DNP in as little as two years. While many programs recommend at least one year of clinical nursing experience, it is typically not required.


Information on the above BSN to DNP programs was last retrieved as of March 2020. For the most up-to-date information, contact the university.