The University of Florida College of Nursing’s Doctor of Nursing Practice, or D.N.P., program tied for No. 28 on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019 Best Grad Schools: Doctor of Nursing Practice list, announced by the publication March 20.
“We are extremely proud to have the Doctor of Nursing Practice program ranked No. 28 in the U.S. News & World Report Best Graduate Schools rankings. Last summer, our D.N.P. program was reaccredited for 10 years. As the top program in the state — one that is in the top 20 among public universities — we offer doctoral programs online to students who have a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in nursing. We pride ourselves on educating the best and brightest advanced practice Gator nurses, who translate theory and research to innovative and evidence-based clinical settings as we continually strive to improve patient outcomes,” said Dean Anna McDaniel, Ph.D., R.N., FAAN.
U.S. News & World Report’s rankings are based on a weighted average of 14 indicators: four research activity indicators, faculty credentials, the percentage of faculty members with important achievements, and faculty participation in nursing practice. The other seven indicators in each ranking use measures that are specific to the degree type.
The College of Nursing’s D.N.P. program was given official reaccreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for a full 10 years in July 2017.
When it comes to nursing, the D.N.P. differs from the Ph.D. in a few essential ways, the main difference being that the Ph.D. is oriented toward theory and research, while the D.N.P. is directed toward putting theory and research into practice in advanced clinical situations.
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing, or AACN, the leading national nursing education organization, officially recommended adopting the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree as the industry standard and terminal degree for advanced practice nurses.
The AACN has promoted the D.N.P. degree to combat the well-known nursing shortage, a shortage that threatens to become a crisis in the next decade.
“Strong, well-educated leaders are needed in clinical settings, and current, knowledgeable educators are needed in clinical education; the D.N.P. prepares nurses for both,” said McDaniel.