Dual Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree programs generally offer flexible MBA formats (online, evenings, part-time) and prepare students for leadership roles in healthcare. Some DNP programs may offer an executive track, and some MBA programs may result in a concentration in healthcare management. Explore this dual degree program and some of its usual requirements.
Information on Dual MBA/DNP Degree Programs
Dual MBA/DNP degree programs typically include hands-on training through practicum experiences and help students finish both degrees faster than taking them individually, usually within 9 semesters full-time (including summers). Although coursework, especially for the DNP portion of the program, can vary based on a student's interests and concentration, here we examine some of the common coursework for each portion of the dual degree program.
Students in the DNP portion of the dual degree program usually take a course in health policy, but some of these courses may pair the subject with topics in economics, while others may have it stand alone. Courses that include topics in economics examine how health policy and economic issues affect advanced nursing practice and take a more economic perspective when looking at various levels of health policies. Courses strictly in health policy tend to focus more on the ethical, political, legal and social perspectives of policy and how to create and implement policy.
Depending on how the DNP program is set up, practicum courses in this portion of the dual degree program may include the practical hands-on experience through clinical hours or be taken in conjunction with clinical hours and provide students with their culminating project. Either way, these courses typically include a seminar component, but hands-on courses also include laboratory and clinical hours. Hands-on courses are also usually taken in multiple areas of concentration, such as advanced health assessment or primary care for adults.
Marketing management is a typical core course in the MBA portion of the dual degree program. It introduces the subject and explores the concepts of market-driven decision making. These courses often include projects, class discussions and case analyses. Specific topics in these courses may include promotion strategies, pricing decisions, buyer behavior, channels of distribution and dynamics of competition.
Another MBA course is operations management, which explores how to continuously innovate a business model by more effectively integrating human and technical parts of the production system. Students discuss the decision-making process for evaluating these systems and different ways to design or schedule aspects of the system. Other topics may include inventory management, queuing theory, process mapping, operating systems and lean manufacturing.
Most MBA programs include a course in communication, but some may place an emphasis in organizational communication, while others take a broad overview of business communication. Either kind of course aims to further develop students' oral and written communication skills needed in the field through projects and presentations. Courses in organizational communication may take on a more internal audience perspective and include topics in conflict resolution and negotiation, while courses in business communication may examine internal and external audience perspectives and how to construct effective arguments.
Common Entrance Requirements
Similar to many dual degree programs, dual MBA and DNP programs usually require students to apply and be accepted into both programs separately. Some of these programs may have additional admission standards, such as a minimum GPA, work experience, an RN license and/or a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). Some programs may also ask for prior coursework in subjects like biostatistics and/or require applicants to undergo an interview process. Typical applications for these programs ask students to submit their official transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, letters of recommendation, personal statement and/or a current resume.
Dual MBA and DNP degree programs usually require students to complete business and nursing coursework, as well as clinical hours through practicum experiences. Students need to apply to both programs and can usually take at least some coursework online.