Graduate Program - Academic Programs

The Capstone College of Nursing

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Request Information

Notice:  The Joint Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program  is scheduled for review by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).   As part of this review, CCNE invites program constituents to submit,  in writing, comments concerning the program’s qualifications for accreditation status.   Only signed comments are accepted by CCNE.

If you would like to submit a third-party comment for a program currently under review, please submit to thirdpartycomments@aacn.nche.edu.

Or, if you prefer, mail comments to:

Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
Attn: Third-Party Comments
One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530
Washington, DC  20036



Program Description:

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a joint program offered by The University of Alabama Capstone College of Nursing (UACCN), the University of Alabama in Huntsville College of Nursing (UAHCON), and the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing (UABSON).  Entry into the program is available every fall. 

The DNP is a practice-focused degree to prepare graduates to function at the highest level in specialty practice or to assume leadership positions in health care. Graduates of the DNP program focus on providing care with an emphasis on improving quality and access to underserved and diverse populations. Graduates employ abilities and skills in these areas to advocate for reasonable, rational and data-driven health regulations, standards, and practices; sustain collaborative and strategic relationships, promote innovative, effective health care programs; and form partnerships with diverse groups to address health disparities.

For most students, the post-master’s DNP curriculum is a minimum of 40 credits that includes the development of a practice or leadership focused project. This scholarly project is designed to synthesize scholarship in an advanced practice specialty or an area of healthcare leadership and serves as a capstone program experience. All courses are offered in a distance accessible format, and students may develop the scholarly project under the direction of program faculty and alumni mentors.

Note: This program requires a clinical component and it is the student’s responsibility to identify a site with an appropriate clinical advisor. Prior to the clinical component, the student will start the process of obtaining a CCN Letter of Agreement (LOA) or a Clinical Affiliation Contract with the agency. No clinical practice will take place until the student has been notified by CCN of approval.

CCN Graduate Student Handbook

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Meet the Graduate Program Faculty

Our faculty are highly skilled and many are nationally recognized for their areas of expertise and their commitment to excellence in nursing education. The college’s faculty are always available to answer questions.

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Program of Study:

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Admission Requirements:

Admission requirements are consistent with those of the Graduate School. Applicants for the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) will be considered on a competitive basis. Nurses who are interested in the program are encouraged to contact the Capstone College of Nursing (CCN) Graduate Recruitment and Retention Liaison.

The following are requirements for admission:

  1. A master’s degree in nursing from an accredited school of nursing in an advanced nursing practice area (nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, nurse administrator, nurse midwife, or nurse anesthetist). Students who have a master’s degree in nursing in an area other than advanced practice may request to have their application evaluated to determine if they meet requirements for the DNP. These students, upon admission, may require additional coursework prior to beginning actual DNP courses to meet the advanced practice component.
  2. Students must (a) hold an advanced practice national certification; or (b) be eligible to sit for advanced practice national certification and must pass their specific certification exam prior to completing 12 credit hours of DNP coursework. Students will be considered for conditional admission.
  3. A grade point average, based on a 4.0 system meeting one of the following; 3.0 overall, 3.0 of the last 60 semester hours in a degree program, or 3.0 for a completed graduate degree
    program.
  4. Current unencumbered RN licensure in the United States.

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Application Process:

Graduate Admission Checklist Get Adobe   Reader

Step 1 – Graduate School Application
  1. Submit application online.
  2. Request two letters of recommendation from professionals who have insight regarding the student’s potential for success in the doctoral program. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents
  3. Submit statement of purpose. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents
  4. Submit curriculum vitae or resume. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents
  5. Request an official transcript to be sent from all higher education courses/programs attempted to the Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487.
  6. If the applicant’s Grade Point Average (GPA) is lower than a 3.0, an acceptable Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or Miller Analogies Test (MAT) must be submitted. Send to the Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487.
  7. A student, whether an international or a permanent resident, whose first language is not English, must submit an official score report from one of the following proficiency examinations: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or Pearson Test of English (PTE). Please refer to the Graduate Handbook for further information.
Step 2 - Capstone College of Nursing Documentation

All documentation must be received by April 1.

  1. Copy of current and active RN license. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents Note: Licensure must be maintained throughout the program.
  2. Copy of current and active national advanced practice certification. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents Note: Certification must be obtained prior to completing 12 credit hours of coursework and must be maintained throughout the program.
  3. Verification of total number of clinical practice hours in master’s or post-master’s certificate programs on Verification of Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Hours Form. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents
  4. Writing sample describing a potential scholarly project. See Guidelines for Writing Sample. Submit to: Manage Supporting Documents
  5. Personal phone interview with the DNP Admission Committeeafter all of Steps 1 and 2 have been completed (arranged by CCN).
Step 3 – Capstone College of Nursing Documentation – Submit to the Capstone College of Nursing Graduate Program upon acceptance to the program.

Upon admission, students will receive written verification of admission from the Dean of the Graduate School. They will also receive a letter from the Assistant Dean of the Graduate Program at CCN outlining requirements for final entry into the DNP program.

The letter provided upon admission from CCN will include the documentation listed below, as well as information regarding required drug and background screening, financial aid and scholarships, orientation, advisement, textbooks, and Crimson email account.

Upon admission and prior to enrollment, students should submit all materials for Step 3 in one packet to the Capstone College of Nursing Graduate Program. Incomplete packets with partial application materials will not be accepted. Students will not be able to register for classes until this documentation is received.

  1. Letter of Intent Attachment A
  2. Copy of current unencumbered RN license.
  3. Verification of current CPR certification.
  4. Program of Study Option – Please sign and return the option you chose - Attachment D Full Time or Attachment D Part Time
  5. OSHA Training for Infection Control, Bloodborne Pathogens, and Safety - Attachment E
  6. HIPAA Privacy and Security Training - Attachment F
  7. Information Literacy for the 21st Century Training - Attachment G
  8. Nursing Student Health and Physical Exam Form – Health Form 1 – Attachment H
  9. Graduate Student TB Test and Immunization Form – Health Form 2 – All immunizations must be complete - Attachment I
  10. Substance Abuse Policy and Drug/Alcohol Testing Policy – Attachments J-A, B & C - Submit J-A & B

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Transfer of Graduate Credit

Acceptable graduate credit of up to twelve credit hours, earned in a regionally accredited institution in which the student was enrolled in that institution’s graduate school, may be transferred and applied to the requirements for a doctoral degree if approved by the CCN and Graduate School.

Consideration of credit does not guarantee transfer. Evaluation of credit for transfer will not be made until after the student has enrolled in the Graduate School of The University of Alabama. Only post-master’s courses can be considered for transfer into the DNP program.

Further information can be found in the UA Graduate Student Catalog.

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Orientation

A required new student orientation will be provided online for each cohort prior to the beginning of the first semester.

Campus Tour

The University of Alabama campus has many interesting characteristics with its beautiful landscaping and traditional layout. While as an online student you may not need to visit the campus often, we feel you cannot understand the rich tradition this university holds without taking a look at the campus. We have provided a link to the campus virtual tour for your convenience. Click on the link to take The University of Alabama Campus Tour.

Registration in myBama

All students should register for their classes as soon as registration is available. Students mustconfirm final schedules by submitting their tuition and fees by the posted date each semester.

Technical Requirements
Textbooks

Textbook requirements are listed and can be ordered online at the University Supply Store. You may also call the Textbook Department at 1.800.825.6802.

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Academic Advising

Thorough knowledge of the academic regulations and policies of the University and its academic divisions is essential for all students.

Each student is expected to become familiar with the CCN Graduate Student Handbook and the University of Alabama Graduate Catalog and to consult with the academic advisors provided by the student's division.

Each student is responsible for selecting and registering for the courses that (a) are needed to maintain reasonable progress toward the desired degree; (b) will satisfy all requirements for the desired degree by the time the student expects to graduate; and (c) conform to University regulations. Students are expected to pursue successful completion of the courses for which they register.

Students are also responsible for the following:

The student must maintain a current mailing address and a current local residence address on file. Students may make address and phone number updates at myBama. They should also contact CCN Graduate Program Office with any contact updates.

The student must respond promptly to all communications received from The University of Alabama. This requires daily access to Crimson email.

All full-time students are assigned to a graduate faculty advisor by the Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs (ADGP). Part-time students are assigned to the ADGP or the Senior Associate Dean (SAD) for advisement during the first year. At the end of the first year, part-time students are assigned to a graduate faculty advisor.

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Communication

The student must maintain a current mailing address and a current local residence address on file. Students may make address and phone number updates at myBama. They should also contact CCN Graduate Program Office with any contact updates.

The student must read and respond promptly to all communications received from The University of Alabama. This requires daily access to Crimson email.

All full-time students are assigned to a graduate faculty advisor by the Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs (ADGP). Part-time students are assigned to the Graduate Programs Records for advisement during the first year. At the end of the first year, part-time students are assigned to a graduate faculty advisor.

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Money Matters

In addition to expenses common to all students enrolled at The University of Alabama, there are additional expenses specific to the nursing program. Additional expenses are listed below to help students plan (list may not be all-inclusive; prices subject to change without notification). The expenses of the first and last semesters are greater than those of intervening semesters.

Type of Expenses

 

Approximate Cost

Drug Screening and Background Screening—In order to certify to clinical agencies where CCN graduate students practice that each student has an acceptable background screen and negative drug screen, students will be required to undergo background and drug screens.

$77.00

CPR Certification--Evidence of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training that extends through the entire semester is required before a student begins a clinical nursing course. Fees charged by certifying agencies for initial certification and annual renewal vary. 

Variable cost

Health Requirements—Students are required to verify a physical examination and immunization requirements from a licensed healthcare provider. TB skin test is required annually.

Variable cost

Textbooks--Each nursing course has a listing of required and recommended textbooks. Students are expected to have in their possession all books listed as required, and access to books identified as recommended.

Costs varies per semester

Typhon Student Tracking System

$50

DNP Intensive (non-mandatory)

No registration fee. Travel expenses variable.

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Financial Aid

The first step in securing scholarships is completing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

A variety of programs are available for graduate students such as scholarships, federal student loans, grants, and traineeships.

The Financial Assistance Handbook offers a step-by-step guide to help you find and apply for financial assistance. You may also contact the Office of Student Financial Aid for assistance.

Federal Government Assistance

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) offers scholarships and loans for nursing education.

Alabama Board of Nursing Scholarships

At various times, the Alabama Board of Nursing offers scholarships.

College of Continuing Studies, The University of Alabama

The College of Continuing Studies offers scholarships that are specifically available to distance students.

Capstone College of Nursing, The University of Alabama

Scholarships available from the Capstone College of Nursing are administered through the Office of Nursing Student Services (ONSS).

American Association of Colleges of Nursing/Financial Aid/Scholarship Information

An extensive listing of graduate nursing scholarships can be found on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing website.

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Degree Requirements:

The Doctor of Nursing Practice will be awarded to the student who has met the following requirements:

  • GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • good standing at the time of graduation
  • successful completion of the scholarly project
  • successful completion of the required coursework and scholarly project hours

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Accreditation

The Capstone College of Nursing has retained approval status by the Alabama Board of Nursing since opening its doors to students in 1976.

The College also maintains full accreditation for the BSN, MSN and joint DNP degree programs by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education which is listed by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a nationally recognized accrediting agency.

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FAQ’s
Q: What is the cost of the program?

Each distance education course is priced per semester hour. For current tuition rate per semester hour, go to Academic Outreach, and click on Prospective Students then Tuition/Financial Aid.

Q: Has this program been accredited?

The graduate program offered by The University of Alabama is approved by the UA's Graduate School and UA is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). The CCN is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Q: Is financial aid available?

Yes. Students can apply for financial assistance through the UA channels that are available to all graduate students. If you are interested in seeking financial aid, contact the Office of Student Financial Aid. Or you may visit the Graduate School's website for more information.

Q: Is an e-mail address required?

Yes. All students admitted to The University of Alabama receive a Crimson account. This will be the official method of communication. Students should check e-mail daily for important information.

Q: How many courses can be transferred into the program?

Students can transfer graduate-level coursework. For more information, see the
DNP Transfer of Credit (see section above “Transfer of Graduate Credit")

Q: How long will it take me to complete the program?

Full time students may complete the DNP degree in five semesters. Part time students may complete the DNP degree in eight semesters.

Q: Can I access UA information electronically?

Yes. Some websites of interest are listed below:

Contact Us

For information about the program and assistance, please contact the Capstone College of Nursing Graduate Program.

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