Types of DNP Degrees

A DNP degree enables nurses to gain the knowledge that will allow them to advance in their careers as providers of medical care, advocates of healthy living, and proponents of sound healthcare policy.

A Look At DNP Degree Admission Requirements

A Doctor of Nursing Practice program will require prospective students to have at least a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree (BSN). A student will also need to have proof of a current license as a registered nurse (RN). When applying for admission, a school will typically ask that applicants provide letters of recommendation, both from professional and academic sources, official transcripts from their previous colleges, a personal statement, and a current resume. Most DNP programs will want to see applicants who have at least a 3.0 GPA. Schools encourage students to have full-time experience as an RN, but it's not always required. DNP programs differ on GRE requirements, with some asking for them as part of an admission package and others making it optional.

Comparing DNP Degrees

Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AG-ACNP)

A DNP with a specialization in Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner degree prepares nurses to be generalist providers of care to all adult and elderly patients with chronically complex and critical health issues. In some programs, a student may be offered the opportunity to further specialize in clinical areas such as cardiopulmonary, oncology, and emergency preparedness. After becoming certified as an AG-ACNP, nurses may be eligible for careers in primary care clinics, public health departments, and research facilities.

Family Nurse Practitioner

A DNP family nurse practitioner degree will prepare nurses to work in primary caregiving treatment for patients of every age. Students interested in this option are encouraged to have some clinical experience, but it may not always be required. Some of the skills learned in these programs include assessing patients both physically and psychologically, clinical decision-making, and promoting healthy lifestyles. Typically, becoming a family nurse practitioner requires a rigorous schedule that includes extensive clinical hours.

Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (PNP-PC)

The PNP-PC is a course of study for nurses to become a generalist provider of primary health care to children ranging from infants to teens. Some of the responsibilities included in the hands-on training will include assessing a child's health and development and diagnosing symptoms in children that are acutely and chronically ill. Many programs also offer the opportunity to further specialize in areas such as cardiology and orthopedics. When completed, the PNP-PC will be capable of working in clinical facilities that care for children as well as working in their community to enhance the welfare, health, and safety of children.

Nurse Anesthesiology (NA-DNP)

A DNP specialization in Nurse Anesthesiology prepares the nurses to administer anesthesia in settings such as clinics to surgical suites. Upon completion, a grad will have the ability to take the knowledge gained from research and experience and use it in everyday clinical practices, as well as advocate for change in the healthcare system. An NA-DNP will also be capable of providing leadership as tech supervisors and public advocates.

DNP in Executive Leadership

A DNP in Executive Leadership program is primarily designed for nurses with an MSN who have a substantial amount of experience in the field including those who have held positions in senior management. Students in the program will be able to develop the skills to manage people, maintain infrastructure, and do the strategic planning needed to take care of a complex organization. Furthermore, the executive leadership program will train students to understand healthcare statistics and legislation to help advance the state of healthcare. A DNP - Executive Leadership degree will position the nurse who receives it to pursue career opportunities as health care executives, clinical researchers, and teachers of nursing.

Degree Program Program Length Program Requirements Related Careers
Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner 3 to 4 years *BSN
*Primary Care Nurse
*Public Health Worker
Family Nurse Practitioner 3 to 4 years *BSN
*Oncology Nurse
Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner 3 to 4 years *BSN
*Pediatric Cardiology
*Pediatric Orthopedic Nurse
Nurse Anesthesiology 3 years *BSN
*RN Anesthetist
*Supervisor Anesthesia Tech
DNP: Executive Leadership 2 years *MSN
*Health Care Executive
*Clinical Researcher

There are a number of tracks within Doctor of Nursing Practice degrees that a student can pursue. Some of these specialties can lead to careers as anesthesiologists, healthcare executives, and critical care nurses.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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