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BSN to DNP: Programs & Length

Students with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing can pursue a Doctor of Nursing Practice if interested. Five degree programs in the United States will be explored in this guide.

Individuals desiring to further their education beyond a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) with a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree have many choices. They can select a traditional on-campus program or distance learning.

School Comparison

This table outlines the locations and average graduate tuition rates for five schools.

Institution Location Average Graduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)*
Duquesne University Pittsburgh, PA $23,112
Duke University Durham, NC $54,712
Ohio State University Columbus, OH $12,425 (in-state; $34,929 (out-of-state)
University of Virginia Charlottesville, VA $18,848 (in-state); $29,660 (out-of-state)
Baylor University Waco, TX $34,146

Source: *National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES)

BSN to DNP: Programs and Length

Duquesne University

Duquesne University has an online DNP program that offers three residency options: a doctoral writing project, studying abroad in Ireland or Rome, and a specialized leadership project. Students will take 11 courses for a total of 35 credits, which can be completed in two years. Areas of concentration include forensic nursing, nursing education, and transcultural nursing.

Candidates will need a bachelor's degree in nursing (BSN), with a master's in nursing (MSN) preferred, and a 3.0 GPA. They must also have a B in a statistics course and a valid registered nurse (RN) license. Candidates will first complete a phone screen before applying to the program. The applications process involves a professional statement, resume, three references, and official transcripts.

Duke University

Duke University offers a BSN to DNP program for candidates who are RNs. Students will earn both their MSN and DNP upon graduation. Candidates can specialize in either nurse anesthesia or nurse practitioner, with 74 credits required for each specialization, and time to completion varies. Those who already hold an MSN may finish in 5 semesters.

Candidates will need at least a BSN with a 3.0 GPA. It should be noted those with a GPA below 3.4 must take the GRE. The admissions process includes the following:

  • Resume
  • Copy of current RN license
  • Transcripts
  • Undergraduate statistics course
  • Three reference letters
  • Personal statement

Candidates who already have a master's degree must also have completed a graduate research methods and inferential statistics course.

Ohio State University

Students can enroll in a BSN to DNP program at Ohio State University. The program also awards the master's degree and offers many areas of concentration, including nurse midwifery and family nurse practitioner (FNP). It should be noted that three concentration areas, including family nurse practitioner, are available via distance learning. Full-time students can earn their DNP in four years, while part-time students can do so in five years.

Students must posses a BSN with a 3.0 GPA and an active RN license. They will apply online and provide materials like transcripts, a resume, a purpose and goals statement, and three letters of recommendation. The process also includes an online interview.

University of Virginia

The University of Virginia has a BSN to DNP program for candidates who have a BSN or MSN. Candidates can choose from eight specialty areas like family nurse practitioner and adult-gerontology acute care. The program length is dependent on a candidate's level of education (BSN or MSN) and their enrollment status (part-time or full-time). Typically, those with a BSN can earn their degree in 33 months if enrolled on a full-time basis. Part-time students can earn their degree in five to six years.

Candidates will need a 3.0 GPA and possess a current RN license. Other requirements include a statistics course from the last five years. The enrollment process consists of the following:

  • Application
  • Resume
  • Three recommendations
  • Official transcripts

Baylor University

Students with their BSN or MSN can enroll in Baylor University's online DNP program. The program offers three tracks: family NP, neonatal NP, and nurse-midwifery. Courses are 15-weeks long, with 75 credits required for graduation. BSN to DNP students can usually earn their degree in three years. They will need a BSN with a 3.0 GPA, along with their RN license. Students will complete an online application.

BSN to DNP programs can be found in both online and on-campus formats. Typical program lengths range from two to six years. Several programs require a minimum 3.0 GPA, along with prerequisite courses in statistics.


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