Doctor of Nursing Practice

School of NURSING Student mentioned in December 2016 Issue of Tennessee Nurse
Read about DNP (Doctor of Nursing Practice) student Rachel Tolliver's decision to advance her nursing career at Southern in the December 2016 issue of Tennessee Nurse. Learn more »

All graduate degrees

The DNP at Southern is a practical alternative to research-focused doctoral programs. We are preparing nurses and nurse practitioners for leadership roles in advance-practice settings. Our program emphasizes advanced clinical practice, research application, and evaluation of practice and care-delivery models. Your knowledge and skills will be enhanced through practical courses and relevant clinical experiences.

How the program works

The DNP is now available as a 1) BS to DNP or 2) post-master’s option for nurses and nurse practitioners. It is an online program, primarily, that includes three short campus visits and may be taken on a full-time or part-time basis. As a student, you can complete most of the coursework, the clinical practicum, and a scholarly project at home and in your current work environment (or other convenient setting).

BS to DNP option

Students entering the BS to DNP program bypass the MSN degree and have no requirement for experience at the time of entry into the program. It is expected that they will have achieved a minimum of two years (4,000 hours) of nursing experience prior to beginning DNP practicum courses. The BS to DNP has a primary emphasis of the student’s choice and requires either a secondary emphasis or elective hours to meet the 77-hour total.

Post-master's option

The post-master’s DNP has a number of program options which include campus-based nurse practitioner options and online options for nursing education, lifestyle medicine and the DNP/MBA program. All programs may be taken on either a full-time or part-time basis.

Eligibility and prerequisites

BS to DNP option

  • Bachelor’s Degree: A bachelor's degree in nursing from an accredited program
  • Undergraduate GPA: A minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0
  • Statistics course: An undergraduate or graduate course in statistics
  • RN licensure: Current RN licensure in your state or location of residence

Post-master's option

  • Master’s degree:  A master's in nursing from an accredited program
  • Graduate GPA:  A minimum cumulative graduate GPA of 3.0
  • Statistics course:  An undergraduate or graduate course in statistics
  • RN licensure:  Current RN licensure in your state or location of residence
  • Work experience: A minimum of two years (4,000 hours) of work as a registered nurse or nurse practitioner
  • Acute-Care emphasis:  Provide verification of your current advanced-practice certification and licensure and documentation of your acute-care skills set.

Application deadlines

All application steps are to be fully completed by the dates listed.

Term U.S. Residents International
Fall August 1 March 1
Winter October 1 August 1

Admission process

  1. Transcripts: Submit official college and university transcripts. Many institutions subscribe to the convenient transcript-request service at National Student Clearinghouse, or you may also contact your institution directly. Have your transcripts sent to Melodie Lopez in the Graduate Studies office (malopez@southern.edu). If you earned your prerequisite degree at Southern, you do not need to complete this step.
  2. Recommendations: Submit three recommendation forms—one academic and two from a clinical setting. This may be done as part of the online application process, or Download form
  3. Written statement: Write a statement describing your purpose and goals for pursuing this degree.  Your statement should be thoughtfully written to demonstrate your writing skills.  It may be uploaded to your application status page or submitted via email to grad@southern.edu, or malopez@southern.edu.
  4. Curriculum vitae: Submit a curriculum vitae. Upload to your application status page or email to grad@southern.edu, or malopez@southern.edu.
  5. Writing sample:  Submit a scholarly writing sample, such as a previous graduate-level paper, and email it to grad@southern.edu.
  6. Interview:  Schedule an interview with faculty member(s) by emailing dproffit@southern.edu. Interview dates: Fall 2017 options are March 31 and April 28, 2017; Winter 2018 options are September 22 and 29, 2017; and Fall 2018 options are March 30 and April 27, 2018.
  7. For the DNP/MBA, submit scores from the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). With approval, applicants may be admitted without the GMAT if they have:
    • An undergraduate degree from a U.S. institution with a minimum GPA of 3.25
    • OR a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 with five years of full-time business-related management experience

Once you are accepted

Before you enroll, we need acceptable documentation of these items. Email all documents to dproffit@southern.edu.

  • Personal health assessment and physical exam Download Form
  • Criminal background check Download Form
  • Medical-information disclosure and drug-screen consent Download Form
  • Current health information and immunizations Download Form
  • CPR/BLS certification from the American Heart Association
  • Hospital orientation documentation (email to dproffit@southern.edu, or you may take the online TCPS general orientation quiz Download Form

International students

Applicants who are not citizens or permanent residents of the United States are considered international students and must meet additional requirements for admission.

  • View international-student admission requirements »

    1. Applicants from non-English institutions must submit certified English translations and evaluations of official university records, including demonstration of the equivalency of a bachelor's degree.
      Transcript evaluations must be submitted directly to Southern from one of the following agencies:
    2. Applicants from non-English-speaking countries must demonstrate English proficiency.
      Unless an applicant is a native English speaker or received the college/university degree from an English-medium institution, s/he must have a minimum TOEFL score of 100. TOEFL scores are valid for two years from the test date. Learn more at ets.org/toefl »

    3. Submit Declaration of Finances.
      International students must have financial resources sufficient to support themselves for the calendar year, in addition to an international-student deposit of $3,000 (USD). Download Form
      • To be issued an I-20 Form, students must also provide a letter from financial sponsors (including their name and address), as well as copies of bank statements for the last three months showing the balance history for the student's account or the financial sponsor's account.

International students who will be coming to Southern's campus need some additional information about travel documents and living on campus.

  • View more information for international applicants

    • Form I-20:  After all qualifying documentation is received, Southern Adventist University issues a letter of acceptance and the Form I-20. The letter and form must be presented to the U.S. consular officer when applying for a student visa. Only students approved by the Immigration and Naturalization Service for attendance at Southern may enroll.
    • On campus:  International students are encouraged to arrive on campus two weeks prior to the beginning of classes. They should contact the international student adviser as soon as they arrive. Graduate Studies must be notified if there is any change in the arrival date after admission has been granted. Individuals with student visas are required to be enrolled in a full course study (a minimum of nine graduate credit hours) during the school year.
    • Employment:  International students with an F-1 Student Visa may work on campus, provided that employment is available and provided that the student is enrolled in a full course of study and is making progress to the completion of a degree. On-campus employment is limited to 20 hours per week while classes are in session and 40 hours per week during university vacation days.
    • When you are ready to travel: International students should not leave their homeland until they have in their possession:
      1. An admission letter of acceptance from Southern Adventist University
      2. Form I-20 issued by Southern Adventist University
      3. A valid passport
      4. A valid F-1 Student Visa to travel to the United States
      5. Sufficient funds for the first year at Southern Adventist University

 

Course guide

Select an emphasis:

Acute Care Adult/Gerontology NP

Acute Care Adult/Gerontology NP prepares the nurse practitioner to care for patients with acute, complex, and critical health problems. This emphasis prepares graduates for ACNP—Adult/Gerontology national certification.

View the calendar of courses for the Acute Care Adult/Gerontology NP »

Acute Care Specialization prepares the certified acute-care nurse practitioner for an expanded role in an area of special interest (without new certification).

View the calendar of courses for the Acute Care Specialization »

Lifestyle Therapeutics focuses on wholeness, prevention of disease, and promotion of health and healthy lifestyles—all of which are consistent with biblical teaching.

View the calendar of courses for Lifestyle Therapeutics »

 

DNP Core Courses Credits
  HADM 532 Healthcare Economics and Finance 3
  NRSG 705 DNP Seminar 0-1
  NRSG 711 Healthcare Technology in Advanced Practice 2
  NRSG 714 Practical Epidemiology and Research 3
  NRSG 716 Applied Biostatistics in Clinical Research 3
  NRSG 722 Genetics and Environment in Disease 3
  NRSG 723 Christian Leadership and Management 2
  RELT 540 Christianity and Ethics in Professional Practice 3
DNP Core Total   19
Scholarly Project Courses Credits
  NRSG 810 Scholarly Project Development 1
  NRSG 815 Scholarly Project Progression 2
  NRSG 820 Scholarly Project Implementation 3
  NRSG 825 Scholarly Project Evaluation 3
Scholarly Project Total   9
Acute Care Adult/Gerontology NP EMPHASIS Credits
  NRSG 730 Emergency and Disaster Management 2
  NRSG 757 Acute Care Concepts and Skills I 3
  NRSG 759 Acute Care Concepts and Skills II 3
  NRSG 772 Practicum I: Adult/Gerontology Acute Care 2
  NRSG 774 Practicum II: Adult/Gerontology Acute Care 2
  NRSG 776 Practicum III: Adult/Gerontology Acute Care 2
Acute Care Adult/Gerontology NP Emphasis Total   14
  Total   42
DNP Core Courses Credits
  HADM 532 Healthcare Economics and Finance 3
  NRSG 705 DNP Seminar 0-1
  NRSG 711 Healthcare Technology in Advanced Practice 2
  NRSG 714 Practical Epidemiology and Research 3
  NRSG 716 Applied Biostatistics in Clinical Research 3
  NRSG 722 Genetics and Environment in Disease 3
  NRSG 723 Christian Leadership and Management 2
  RELT 540 Christianity and Ethics in Professional Practice 3
DNP Core Total   19
Scholarly Project Courses Credits
  NRSG 810 Scholarly Project Development 1
  NRSG 815 Scholarly Project Progression 2
  NRSG 820 Scholarly Project Implementation 3
  NRSG 825 Scholarly Project Evaluation 3
Scholarly Project Total   9
Acute Care Specialization EMPHASIS Credits
  NRSG 730 Emergency and Disaster Management 2
  NRSG 761 Acute Care Specialization I 2
  NRSG 762 Acute Care Specialization II 2
  NRSG 783 Practicum I: Acute Care Specialization 2
  NRSG 784 Practicum II: Acute Care Specialization 2
Acute Care Specialization Emphasis Total   10
  Total   38
DNP Core Courses Credits
  HADM 532 Healthcare Economics and Finance 3
  NRSG 705 DNP Seminar 0-1
  NRSG 711 Healthcare Technology in Advanced Practice 2
  NRSG 714 Practical Epidemiology and Research 3
  NRSG 716 Applied Biostatistics in Clinical Research 3
  NRSG 722 Genetics and Environment in Disease 3
  NRSG 723 Christian Leadership and Management 2
  RELT 540 Christianity and Ethics in Professional Practice 3
DNP Core Total   19
Scholarly Project Courses Credits
  NRSG 810 Scholarly Project Development 1
  NRSG 815 Scholarly Project Progression 2
  NRSG 820 Scholarly Project Implementation 3
  NRSG 825 Scholarly Project Evaluation 3
Scholarly Project Total   9
LIFESTYLE THERAPEUTICS Emphasis Credits
  NRSG 728 Introduction to Lifestyle Therapeutics 2
  NRSG 734 Educating and Motivating Patients for Lifestyle Changes 2
  NRSG 744 Exercise Modalities for Lifestyle Change 3
  NRSG 746 Nutritional Approaches to Disease Prevention and Management 3
  NRSG 751 Practicum: Lifestyle Therapeutics 2
Lifestyle Therapeutics Emphasis Total   12
  Total   40

Faculty

Ronda Christman
Ronda Christman

Associate Professor
rchristman@southern.edu
423.236.2153

Bonnie Freeland
Bonnie Freeland

Professor
freeland@southern.edu
423.236.2968

Holly Gadd
Holly Gadd

Professor
hgadd@southern.edu
423.236.2961

Frances Johnson
Frances Johnson

Professor
francesj@southern.edu
423.236.2973

Michael Liedke
Michael Liedke

Assistant Professor
maliedke@southern.edu
423.236.2958

Lilly Tryon
Lilly Tryon

Associate Professor
ltryon@southern.edu
423.236.2154

Get started

I am here to help if you have any questions about applying to the programs or enrolling. I'm the one who keeps track of all the forms and certifications you are required to have, so let me know if you get stuck. You are welcome to email or call for information about everything from admission to graduation. I look forward to meeting you and working with you!

Diane Proffitt

Graduate Enrollment Counselor
dproffit@southern.edu
423.236.2957