Mar 30, 2023  
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Academic Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Doctor of Nursing Practice, D.N.P.

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The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a professional degree with a focus on advanced practice in clinical or organizational settings. A rigorous program of study, the DNP curriculum provides students with opportunities for advanced study at the doctoral level in areas such as evidence-based practice, organizational and systems leadership, health policy and theoretical foundations for advanced practice. New cohorts will be admitted in Fall semesters (post-MSN) and Spring semesters (BSN-DNP).


The mission for the DNP program is to prepare expert practitioners to meet the needs of the complex healthcare environment, utilizing the highest level of scientific knowledge and practice expertise to assure quality patient outcomes.


The purposes of the DNP program are to prepare graduates at the highest level of nursing practice to provide complex hospital and community-based care for patients and families; to redesign and evaluate nursing and health care systems, and to address the dire shortage of clinical nursing faculty to mentor and educate future nurses.

The major objectives of the DNP program are to provide a more educated workforce to meet the needs of the recipients of health care and health care employees; to bolster the number of doctorally-prepared faculty teach in nursing education programs; and to expand educational options for masters prepared nurses.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

Students are admitted as a cohort into the DNP program. BSN to DNP cohorts begin in the Spring semesters; post-MSN cohorts begin only in the Fall semester. Didactic courses in the program are offered online. Students are required to participate in on-campus activities immediately prior to the start of the program and at the conclusion of the program when presenting synthesis projects. In addition, there are several courses in the curriculum (residency courses) with practicum requirements.

The general admission requirements of the UL Lafayette Graduate School, admission to the DNP Program requires the following:

For all applicants (both BSN to DNP applicants and Post-MSN applicants):

  • Evidence of current, unencumbered U.S. RN nursing licensure (no restrictions).
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae.
  • A formal letter of application and a statement of purpose (typed, double-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, no longer than 3 pages in length) that provides the following:
    • The applicant’s goals for doctoral study which are congruent with DNP Program goals. (See The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice, which can be accessed at
    • The applicant’s focused area of interest for a synthesis project.
    • The applicant’s understanding of how acquiring the DNP degree is important to fulfillment of his or her career goals.
    • The applicant’s potential contributions to the DNP program.
  • Three recommendations from individuals who can attest to the applicant’s capacity for doctoral study.
    • One recommendation must be from a former faculty member in a nursing program, a current or former nursing supervisor or nursing leader.
    • One recommendation must be from someone who can attest to the competencies and expertise of the applicant at the Advanced Practice level.
    • The third recommendation may be from an individual of the applicant’s choice; however, the letter should address the applicant’s ability to successfully complete doctoral education in nursing.
  • A telephone interview with the DNP Program coordinator.
  • Students should be proficient with methodologies utilized in distance education and must possess computer equipment and technology which is compatible with university learning management systems such as Blackboard and Moodle.
  • Prior to enrollment in residency courses, students will be required to submit to background checks, drug and alcohol screening, and must meet program health requirements. These screenings will be conducted at the student’s expense.
  • Prior to NURS 801 - Biostatistics, students must provide evidence of completion of a graduate level statistics course. This graduate level statistics course must be both current and approved by the DNP Program Coordinator.

Additional requirements for BSN to DNP applicants only:

  • A minimum overall undergraduate grade point average of a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Completion of a physical assessment (across the lifespan) course or evidence of physical assessment skills.
  • Minimum of two years’ experience as an RN at time of application.

Additional requirements for post-MSN applicants only:

  • Evidence of current, unencumbered U.S. APRN Nurse Practitioner nursing licensure (no restrictions).
  • A master’s degree from an accredited university in one of the following areas of advanced nursing practice:
    • Nurse Practitioner
    • Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists
    • Certified Nurse Midwife
    • Nursing Administration/Leadership
  • An overall GPA of at least 3.3 on a 4.0 scale on all master’s level coursework.

Contact Information

Office Phone: 337/482-5601
Office Fax: 337/482-5650
Office Location: V.L. Wharton Hall, Room 307

Degree Requirements

To earn the Doctor of Nursing Practice, the student must adhere to the following degree plan requirements.

All DNP students must:

  • satisfactorily complete a DNP Synthesis Project
  • attain a minimum of 1,000 hours of post-baccalaureate supervised academic program practice hours in DNP residency courses
  • earn no less than a “B” grade in all coursework
    Note: Students who earn less than a “B” grade in a course will be required to repeat that course. A course may be repeated only once. Courses with a grade of “C” may not be applied toward the degree requirements.

In addition, BSN to DNP students must:

  • complete a minimum of 70 graduate credit hours in the DNP program

In addition, Post-MSN students must:

  • complete a minimum of 39 graduate credit hours in the DNP program


A student’s ability to progress in the curriculum is dependent upon adherence to the following curriculum. Please note that some courses are only taught once each year and many have pre-requisites.

Curriculum, BSN to DNP

Your ability to progress in the curriculum is dependent upon your following this schedule. For example, some courses are only taught once each year and many have pre-requisites.

Total: 10 Credits

Total: 3 Credits

Total: 9 Credits

Total: 9 Credits

Semester 5

Total: 3 Credits

Total: 8 Credits/300 Clinical Clock Hours

Total: 9 Credits/390 Clinical Clock Hours

Total: 4 Credits

Semester 9

Total: 8 Credits/210 Clinical Clock Hours

Total: 7 Credits/120 Clinical Clock Hours

Total BSN to DNP Credit Hours: 70

Total BSN to DNP Clinical Clock Hours: 1020

Curriculum, Post-MSN

Total: 6 Credits

Total: 6 Credits

Total: 9 Credits

Total: 7 Credits/120 Clinical Clock Hours

Total: 8 Credits/180 Clinical Clock hours

Semester 6

Total: 3 Credits/120 Clinical Clock Hours

Total Post-MSN Credit Hours: 39

Total Post-MSN Clinical Clock Hours: 420

DNP Curriculum Notes

The DNP program reserves the right to limit the number of students enrolled in nursing courses to make the most effective use of the educational resources available. In the event that enrollment in these courses must be limited, students will be selected by their academic ranking based upon DNP admission requirements and their overall GPA in graduate nursing courses.

Completion of NURS 505  or a comparable graduate level statistics course is a pre-requisite to NURS 801 .

In NURS 821 NURS 822 , and NURS 823  students are expected to undertake a minimum of 120, 180, and 120 residency hours respectively. Students requiring additional residency hours must also register for NURS 809 , NURS 810 NURS 811 , or NURS 812 .

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