Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree is a practice-focused doctorate designed to prepare expert nurses in specialized advanced practice roles.

Students who hold a BS in nursing are eligible for the BSN to DNP program. Students who have previously earned a master’s degree in nursing and have an active Florida APRN license are eligible for the MSN to DNP program.

The focus of the DNP program is on innovative and evidence-based practice. The DNP prepares advanced practice nurses with the knowledge, skills and abilities needed in today’s and tomorrow’s complex health care environment. This degree provides the advanced practice nurse with an educational background comparable to health care practitioners in other fields.

Why Gator Nursing?

Celia Colson, BSN to DNP Graduate

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Why a DNP from UF?

  • Practice-focused doctorate designed to prepare expert nurses in specialized advanced practice.
  • Manageable for the working professional with fully online curriculum and clinical hours arranged in the student’s local area.
  • Strong focus on leadership so graduates can fill a bigger need in the health care system.
  • Expert faculty clinicians and innovative clinical sites and experiences

Program Description

  • The DNP is an advanced educational credential for those who desire advanced practice knowledge but do not need or want a research focus.
  • Available for post-baccalaureate and postmaster’s students who want to earn their DNP.
  • Curriculum spans eight semesters with a semester course load not exceeding 9 -10 credits.
  •  The culminating work of the DNP curriculum is a comprehensive, practice-based project.
    • Final project helps graduates build their clinical scholarship and expertise.
    • Students’ projects are often published and presented at conferences. Examples of DNP projects.

The BSN to DNP program is between 75 and 78 credits depending on the specialty track. Our curriculum focuses on the national DNP essentials and provides a clear path for development of the DNP project. All classes offered in an online format with periodic required campus visits.

The MSN to DNP program is available online. Minimal campus attendance is required.The MSN to DNP program is available for those who already possess a master’s degree in nursing and an active Florida APRN license. This program is designed for those seeking a clinically based terminal degree. The MSN to DNP program is 35 credits and may be completed in five semesters.

Upon completion of the doctoral program, the graduate will be able to:

  1. Evaluate scientific bases from extant and emerging areas of knowledge for advanced nursing practice.
  2. Evaluate decision support systems to solve clinical problems for individuals, aggregates and systems.
  3. Develop advanced leadership and collaborative skills to mobilize interdisciplinary teams to solve highly complex clinical problems.
  4. Develop expertise to formulate health policy and provide leadership in establishing clinical excellence and creating new models of cost-effective health care delivery.
  5. Critically assess, plan, intervene and evaluate the health experiences of individuals, aggregates and systems to provide safe, evidence-based care.
  6. Synthesize knowledge of cultural diversity and global perspectives in delivering health care and in critiquing nursing systems.

Once you hold a DNP degree, you can become employed across the full spectrum of health care organizations, from community health centers to hospitals and from private clinics to universities. Obtaining your DNP opens up many opportunities for growth.

Tuition and Costs

The most current graduate tuition cost per credit hour may be found on the University of Florida Bursar’s website.

For a list of estimated expenses, please visit the University of Florida Office for Student Financial Affairs website.

Federal loans and financial aid are available for the fall, spring and summer semesters for graduate students. Doctoral students are also eligible for a number of scholarships and fellowships. 

Doctor of Nursing Practice Tracks


The BSN to DNP program is between 75 and 78 credits depending on the specialty track.


The MSN to DNP program is available for those who already possess a master’s degree in nursing and an active Florida ARNP license.

Certificate Program

The post-master’s certificate program is available to students who already have a master’s degree in nursing or higher and hold licensure as an ARNP in the state of Florida.

Which Program is Right for Me?

Curious about the difference between a DNP and PhD? View our DNP vs. PhD side-by-side comparison.

Questions? Contact Us