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Doctor of Nursing Practice

UW-Eau Claire offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree option for individuals pursuing education in advanced practice nursing. The DNP is a clinical doctorate intended for nurses assuming leadership roles in the areas of advanced clinical practice (nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist) or nursing administration/executive. Both MSN-to-DNP and BSN-to-DNP options are available. The DNP program is fully accredited by the Commission Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

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The UWEC nursing program deepened my passion for nursing more than I ever thought possible. It prepared me to approach my current practice as a registered nurse holistically with a focus on the patient above all else. This program inspired me to consistently strive to be the best I can be. I have such trust and loyalty in the UWEC College of Nursing and Health Sciences, that I chose to continue my education here in the Doctorate of Nursing Practice Program.

Rachel DeRusha Nursing

Contact Info

Catherine "Kitty" Kenney, DNP, RN, Nursing
Nursing 203
5 Roosevelt Avenue

Department website

Prepared for success

Graduates of the DNP program will be able to:
  • Expand advanced nursing practice by integrating the art and science of nursing with theory and knowledge from biophysical, psychosocial, political, ethical, technical, analytical, cultural, spiritual, environmental, and organizational realms.
  • Promote culturally sensitive, holistic advanced nursing practice care and services in a global community, with emphasis on disease/illness prevention and health/wellness promotion as well as restoration and maintenance.
  • Synthesize leadership skills, systems analysis, and advocacy expertise.
  • Integrate clinical expertise and competence with population-focused management, evidence-based practice, and health care policy.
  • Analyze health-related information systems and technology for the improvement of health care.
  • Develop, implement and evaluate evidence-based approaches to advanced nursing practice.
  • Evaluate the outcomes of advanced nursing practice.
  • Apply clinical scholarship and leadership skills to advanced nursing practice.
  • Evaluate personal scholarship, professional growth, and excellence in practice.

Why UW-Eau Claire

Did You Know - Fact

  • U.S. News & World Report magazine consistently ranks UW-Eau Claire among the top public regional universities in the Midwest in its annual America’s Best Colleges guidebook.

Rankings / Reputation / Well-funded programs

  • UW-Eau Claire’s reputation as an interactive university has been cited in publications such as Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine, Money Magazine and The Chronicle of Higher Education.
  • UW-Eau Claire is a member institution of The Council of Graduate Schools and is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools


Program Options

MSN-to-DNP option

For MSN-to-DNP students, the  program consists of 29-30 credits taken at the 800-level. The 800-level courses include five core courses, two seminar and practicum courses (provide 450 clinical hours), and DNP project experience courses. The courses are offered as hybrids that combine online components with on-campus immersion days taken over two to three years for part-time students. The clinical experiences are accomplished under the guidance of a faculty member and an agency facilitator.
BSN-to-DNP option
For the BSN-to-DNP students, the program consists of approximately 68 credits (including 6 credits of cognates/electives) and a total of 1,050 clinical hours for the administration/executive role preparation; and approximately 73 credits and a total of 1,087 clinical hours for nurse practitioner and clinical nurse specialist role preparations, including the DNP project experience hours. The full- time program plan is for 3 years, with 4- and 5-year part-time options available, including summers. For full-time students, the first year of courses are 700-level courses taught on-campus on Mondays; and the second year of courses include 700- and 800-level courses taught on Tuesdays. The third year consists of all 800-level courses and are taught on Wednesdays. The 800-level courses are offered as hybrids that combine online components with on-campus days.
Licensure Information
The United States Department of Education requires institutions to disclose information for programs leading to professional certification or licensure about whether each program meets state educational requirements for initial licensure or certification.  

The requirements of this program meet licensure in the following states: Minnesota, Wisconsin

The requirements of this program do not meet licensure in the following states: N/A

It has not been determined whether the requirements of this program meet licensure in the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wyoming

Special Admission Guidelines

To apply to the DNP program, an applicant must contact Dr. Catherine “Kitty” Kenney and submit the following documents for consideration by the priority date of January 4 for the summer (for MSN to DNP) or fall semester (for BSN to DNP):
  • A complete application for graduate admission along with the application fees.
  • Official transcripts from postsecondary institutions.
  • An undergraduate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited (CCNE or NLN) nursing program, with a 3.0 GPA or higher. For MSN to DNP, a graduate degree in nursing from an accredited program with a 3.0 GPA or higher.
  • Three references (only per reference form) from individuals who are knowledgeable of the applicant’s clinical ability and/or potential for graduate study.
  • An essay.
  • A complete DNP Demographic Form.
  • Wisconsin Registered Nurse licensure (U.S. licensure at application, with WI by July 1).
  • Resume
  • Evidence of undergraduate-level coursework in statistics (BSN-to-DNP students).

Send materials to:

Graduate Admissions
UW-Eau Claire
Schofield Hall 111
Eau Claire WI 54702-4004

Those applying to MSN to DNP also need to submit evidence of:
  • A master’s degree in nursing from a nationally accredited (CCNE or NLN) nursing program, with a role preparation in Advanced Practice Nursing as an Adult/Gerontologic or Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult Clinical Nurse Specialist, or Nurse Administrator (transcript required). Other nursing practice specialties may be considered.
  • Evidence of 550 hours of master’s level clinical practicum (or national certification by a body approved by the Wisconsin State Board of Nursing).

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