Graduate Application Deadlines

Fall Deadline – May 1st

Spring Deadline – October 1st

Summer Deadline – February 1st

Academic Programs

Nurse Practitioner (NP)

Nurse Practitioners are health promotion and disease prevention experts who manage and diagnose common acute and chronic illnesses. Nurse Practitioners provide quality, safe, cost-effective care. Nurse Practitioners teach and counsel individuals, families, and groups according to their practice specialty. The Capstone College of Nursing (CCN) offers Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) and Dual FNP-PMHNP specialization tracks. The FNP tack prepares students for certification as an FNP, and the PMHNP track prepares students for certification as a PMHNP – across the lifespan. The Dual specialization track prepares students to sit for both certification exams. Students complete coursework online and attend an on-campus orientation and a virtual clinical intensive during their program of study.

Want more info? Click to set up an appointment.

The sample plan of study is found in the UA Graduate Catalog.

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

Nurse Executive (Formerly Nurse Administrator) (NE)

Nursing Executive (NE) and management covers a diverse field of formal leadership from those who supervise individual units within a medical facility as front-line managers to higher-level nurse administrators and executives who oversee nursing operations for an entire hospital or healthcare organization. The Capstone College of Nursing (CCN) offers the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with a Nurse Executive (NE) concentration that incorporates the AACN Essentials and the AONE Nurse Executive Competencies to provide a comprehensive educational experience for the student. The NE program has a significant clinical/administrative component to support learning objectives. Overall, the program focuses on navigating the complexities of the American healthcare system, the challenges of personnel management, quality improvement, budgeting, and other resources in healthcare organizations, as well as professional political advocacy for nursing and quality patient care. The MSN program of study for NE is offered as both full-time and part-time programs of study. Students are expected to find individual site(s) and preceptor(s) for their clinical/administration immersion. CCN will assist students with the paperwork process to secure a Clinical Affiliation Agreement with the healthcare agency. No clinical practice will take place until the student has been notified by CCN of site and clinical preceptor approval.

Want more info? Click to set up an appointment.

The sample plan of study is found in the UA Graduate Catalog.

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

Nurse Educator (ED)

STARTING FALL 2024

The Masters of Science in Nursing with Nurse Educator concentration (MSN-ED) prepares bachelors prepared nurses with a passion for teaching to prepare and develop new nurses. Nurse educators have the flexibility to adapt curriculum and teaching methods in response to innovation in nursing science and ongoing changes in the practice environment. Given the increasing shortage of nurse faculty, there is a demand for individuals needed to teach in schools of nursing, hospitals, public health agencies, and other settings.

Want more info? Click to set up an appointment.

The sample plan of study is found in the UA Graduate Catalog.

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

The DNP is a practice doctorate in nursing which prepares graduates to function at the highest level of nursing practice. Graduates of the DNP program focus on providing care with an emphasis on improving quality and access to underserved and diverse populations. Two pathways to the DNP degree are available, the post-master’s to DNP (MSN to DNP) and the post-baccalaureate to DNP (BSN to DNP).  The Post-masters pathway admits MSN-prepared nurses or BSN-prepared nurses who hold a Master’s in another relevant field.  Those with Master’s in a field other than Nursing may be required to complete additional courses.  The post-baccalaureate pathway admits BSN-prepared nurses.  The MSN degree will be awarded in route, at the start of the DNP project courses. The following MSN concentrations are available: Nurse Executive (NE), Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP), or dual Psychiatric Mental Health and Family Nurse Practitioner.  The BSN to DNP pathway for Nurse Practitioner concentrations is currently available to these states. All courses are offered in a distance accessible format with one on-campus intensive conference attended during the DNP project courses. This program requires a clinical component: post-master’s DNP clinical hours during the DNP Clinical Immersion course work are 540 hours. Students must achieve a minimum total graduate clinical hours of 1000 hours to complete the program. Those who cannot provide verification of 460 master’s level clinical hours will be required to complete those clinical hours prior to the DNP Clinical Immersion course work.

The sample plan of study is found in the UA Graduate Catalog.

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

Doctorate in Education (EdD) in Instructional Leadership for Nurse Educators

The UA College of Education and the Capstone College of Nursing offer a Doctorate in Education (EdD) in Instructional Leadership for Nurse Educators. Graduates are prepared to teach nursing in community or four-year colleges and universities in their area of expertise. In this program, nurses that have an MSN degree enter the program to earn a Doctorate in Education (EdD) for Nurse Educators. Coursework for this distance learning program can be completed in three years through a blended format of online courses and one on-campus meeting in the fall and spring semesters. A cohort-design is used, therefore, only full-time programs of study are available.

For more information on the EdD Program.

Joint Nursing Science PhD

The Joint Nursing Science Ph.D. program prepares nurse scholars who will advance nursing science by generating new knowledge through Interprofessional research initiatives and to improve the health of rural and medically underserved populations. This program provides students with faculty and educational resources housed on both The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) and The University of Alabama (UA) campuses. Two pathways to the PhD degree are available, the post-master’s to PhD (MSN to PhD) and the post-baccalaureate to PhD (BSN to PhD). All courses are offered in a distance accessible format with one on-campus intensive conference attended each year. The PhD program is offered as both full-time and part-time programs of study.  

For more information on the Joint Nursing Science, PhD.

Post-Graduate Certificate

The Post-graduate Certificates enrolls nurses who are already prepared at either the master’s or doctorate level for other roles. Two concentrations are available, the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) or Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP). The FNP concentration prepares students for certification as an FNP, and the PMHNP concentration prepares students for certification as a PMHNP – across the lifespan. Students in the Post-graduate Certificate will complete NP population-focused courses, but they will not be required to complete master’s graduate nursing core courses if they were completed in a prior master’s or doctorate program with a grade of B or better and are approved by the UA Graduate Schools for transfer. Direct care core courses (e.g., advanced pathophysiology, advanced physical assessment, advanced pharmacology) may be transferable if completed with a B or better within 5 years of application.

The sample plan of study is found in the UA Graduate Catalog.

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

Application Requirements and Process

Application Requirements

MSN Application Requirements

Admission requirements are consistent with those of the Graduate School. Applicants for the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) will be considered on a competitive basis.

Nurses who are interested in the Nurse Practitioner (NP) Concentration, Nurse Administrator (NA) Program and Nurse Educator (NE) are encouraged to contact the Capstone College of Nursing (CCN) Coordinator of Graduate Student Services. 

The following are requirements for admission:

1. For regular admission, a grade point average of at least 3.0 overall (based on a 4.0 grading scale) or 3.0 for the last 60 semester hours of undergraduate work is required.

2. Baccalaureate degree in nursing from an accredited school of nursing.

3. Current unencumbered RN licensure in the United States. Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing accepts applications for admission.

4. Final admission is contingent upon drug and background screen results deemed acceptable by appropriate University officials.

BSN to DNP Admission Requirements

Admission requirements are consistent with those of the University of Alabama Graduate School. Applicants for the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) will be considered on a competitive basis. The following are requirements for admission:

1. Reside and hold a current unencumbered RN licensure in a state approved for admission. Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing accepts applications for admission.

2. Baccalaureate degree in nursing from an accredited school of nursing.

3. For regular admission, a grade point average of at least 3.0 overall (based on a 4.0 grading scale) or 3.0 for the last 60 semester hours of undergraduate work are required.

4. Final admission is contingent upon drug and background screen results that are deemed acceptable by appropriate University officials.

MSN to DNP Admission Requirements

Admission requirements are consistent with those of the University of Alabama Graduate School. Applicants for the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) will be considered on a competitive basis. The following are requirements for admission:

1. Reside and hold a current unencumbered RN licensure in a state approved for admission. Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing accepts applications for admission.

2. Master’s degree in nursing from a CCNE or NLN accredited school of nursing or a Master’s degree in another relevant field. Those with Master’s in a field other than Nursing may be required to complete additional courses.

3. A 3.0 grade point average, based on a 4.0 system in a completed graduate degree.

4. Final admission is contingent upon drug and background screen results that are deemed acceptable by appropriate University officials.

Post-Graduate Certificate Application Requirements

Admission requirements are consistent with those of the Graduate School. Applicants for the nurse practitioner post-graduate certificate will be considered on a competitive basis. Nurses who are interested in the nurse practitioner post-graduate are encouraged to contact the Capstone College of Nursing (CCN) Coordinator of Graduate Student Services.

The following are requirements for admission:

1. Master’s degree in nursing from an accredited graduate program in nursing or a master’s degree in a health-related field with a baccalaureate degree in nursing from an accredited program.

2. For regular admission, a grade point average of at least 3.0 overall (based on a 4.0 grading scale) or 3.0 for the graduate work is required.

3. Current unencumbered RN licensure in the United States. Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing accepts applications for admission.

4. Must have completed Advanced Pharmacology, Advanced Pathophysiology and Advanced Health Assessment within 5 years. (If these courses are needed they can be worked into the applicants plan of study).

5. Final admission is contingent upon drug and background screen results that are deemed acceptable by appropriate University officials.

Graduate Application Process

Application Process

  • Begin your graduate application at the UA Graduate School.
  • Request transcripts following the Graduate School’s transcript instructions.
  • Upload supporting documents.  Upload the supporting documents below into your graduate application.
  • Statement of purpose – Please complete the statement of purpose using the following links: Statement of Purpose Guidelines
  • Resume or curriculum vitae 
  • Contact information for two references – The references should be professionals who can provide insight regarding your potential for success in the graduate program.  The Graduate School will contact these references via e-mail.
  • Copy of active RN license from every state in which you are licensed.  A screenshot of your online verification is sufficient.  Note: Licensure must be maintained throughout the program.
  • Post-Masters DNP OnlyVerification of Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Hours or proof of APRN certification
  • Interview – Applicants will receive instructions on this step (if they meet the minimum GPA requirement) once the application is complete with the above requirements.
  • DNP (BSN to DNP and Post-Masters DNP) – Accepted students have the option to take the College Composition CLEP test. If passed with a score of 55 or greater, the CLEP will allow the student to waive the course “Introduction to Writing” as part of their plan of study. If the CLEP is not taken or not passed with a score of 55 or greater, the student will take “Introduction to Writing” as part of their plan of study.” Once the test has been completed, please forward the test score to vsamuel@ua.edu. The test information is here: https://clep.collegeboard.org/clep-exams/college-composition. Information on registering is here: https://clep.collegeboard.org/register-for-an-exam/how-to-register

Additionally, we may require the following:

English proficiency exam score – Whether an international or a permanent resident. if your first language is not English, you 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 Person Test of English (PTE). Please refer to the Graduate Catalog for further information.

Upon admission you will receive written notification of admission from the Dean of the Graduate School. You will also receive an email from Associate Dean of Graduate Programs at CCN Outlining requirements for entry.

Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements

MSN Nurse Executive (Formerly Nurse Administrator) Degree Requirements

Upon admission you will receive written notification of admission from the Dean of the Graduate The MSN with Nurse Executive concentration 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 required coursework

– Participate in virtual orientation

MSN Nurse Practitioner Degree Requirements

The MSN with Nurse Practitioner concentration 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 required coursework

– Participate in a virtual orientation

– Participate in-person the clinical intensive and during the NP IV clinical course for the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE)

MSN Nurse Educator Degree Requirements

The MSN with Nurse Educator concentration 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 required coursework

– Participate in virtual orientation

DNP 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 DNP project

– Successful completion of the required coursework and DNP project hours

– Recorded participation in virtual DNP orientation

– Attendance at one (1) DNP Intensive during the DNP Project Immersion courses (NUR 796-798 taken the last three semester of the program)

– BSN to DNP students with a Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Mental Health or Dual NP focus are required to attend the on-campus orientation for NPs

– BSN to DNP students are required to attend the virtual NP Clinical Intensive during the concentration unique clinical courses

Post-Graduate Nurse Practitioner Certificate Requirements

The post-graduate certificate 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 required coursework

– Participate in a virtual orientation

– Participate in-person the clinical intensive and during the NP IV clinical course for the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE)

Scholarships/Financial Aid

Information on scholarships and aid

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.

You may contact the Office of Student Financial Aid for assistance.

Federal Government Assistance

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

Alabama Board of Nursing Scholarships

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

UA Online, The University of Alabama

UA Online 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 Graduate Programs Office.

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.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Organization

Accepts applications for the Pursuit of Excellence in Nursing Scholarship each year, for more information visit Doctor of Nursing Practice DNP ORG

Current and Prospective Student Resources

View helpful resources

Frequently Asked Questions

View a list of FAQs

General Questions

 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 BamaByDistance Cost Information page.

Textbooks and material costs – approximately $330-$500 per semester.

Q: Who should you contact for program information?

You can set up a time to speak with Vickie Samuel, Coordinator of Graduate Student Services using Microsoft Bookings, https://outlook.office365.com/owa/calendar/AdvisingandProspectiveStudents@ua.edu/bookings

Q: Has this program been accredited?

Yes.  For more information, go to Accreditation.

Q: From what states does the College of Nursing accept applications for admissions?

Click Here to view the states from which the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for admission.

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: Are there any additional fees?

Yes, students are required to complete a drug and background screen annually, purchase a medical document tracker, CPR certification, health requirements, and clinical hour tracking system

Q: What is the application process?

The application process can be found at Graduate Academic Programs – Capstone College of Nursing – The University of Alabama | The University of Alabama.

Q: When is the application deadline?

The deadline for the spring semester is October 1st, the summer semester is February 1st and fall semester is May 1st.

MSN Program Questions

Q: How many credit hours can be transferred into the program?

Students can transfer up to 12 credit hours of graduate-level coursework, upon approval. For more information, see the MSN Transfer of Credit (see section above “Transfer of Graduate Credit”)

Q: Do I need to write a thesis for the MSN program?

No, the thesis is optional. If you wish to write a thesis, appropriate support will be provided. Please note, however, that selecting the thesis option may require additional travel to campus.

DNP Program Questions

Q: Is the DNP Intensive a requirement?

Yes, students are required to attend one intensive during the last three semesters of the program.

Q: What are the requirements for the DNP Project?

The DNP curriculum includes development of a clinical practice project. This “DNP project” is designed to synthesize scholarship in an advanced nursing practice specialty or an area of health care leadership. Practice immersion experiences provide the context within which the project is completed. Students develop the project under the direction of a team, including program faculty, the student, the clinical advisor, the faculty advisor, and alumni mentors. All courses are offered in a distance accessible format.

Q: How does the student find a clinical site and clinical advisor?

It is the student’s responsibility to identify a site and an appropriate clinical advisor. No clinical practice will take place until the student has been notified by CCN of site and clinical advisor approval.

Q: What type of clinical advisor is required for the DNP Program?

All DNP students are required to have a clinical advisor to provide expertise and facilitate completion of the DNP project. In each facility or clinical setting, clinical advisors are selected by the student to correspond as closely as possible to student objectives for the DNP project. Each clinical advisor should be at least master’s prepared in their discipline and preferably be a doctoral prepared registered nurse who is currently licensed, certified, and practicing at the advanced nursing practice level. If the clinical advisor is not a registered nurse, the clinical advisor must be prepared at the doctoral level. When a clinical advisor is not prepared at the doctoral level, the student may work with that individual in conjunction with a consultant who is prepared at the doctoral level. If that is the case, the student will need to submit a complete clinical packet for the primary clinical advisor and the doctorally prepared consultant.

Q: What are the clinical hours in the DNP Program?

DNP Project clinical hours in the DNP program are very different than clinical hours in other areas of clinical nursing study. You will need a clinical practice site and a doctorally prepared clinical advisor where you will do your DNP Project. Usually, the practice site is where you work or a group practice that you work in. Clinical hours are those spent directly related to the development, implementation, evaluation, and dissemination of your DNP Project with or under the guidance of your faculty and clinical advisors. There are three immersion courses that are the last three semesters of your program of study. You will do at least 180 clinical hours in each of the three immersion courses.

Our Team

Amy S. D. Lee, DNP, ARNP, WHNP-BC
Associate Dean for Graduate Programs

(205) 348-3071
View Bio

Vickie L. Samuel
Coordinator of Graduate Student Services
Christina Horen, BS
Administrative Assistant II, Clinical Placement Office
Ashtyn Morrison
Program Assistant

amnorris2@ua.edu
(205) 348-3071
View Bio

Stephanie Williams, MEd
Academic Advisor I
Jill R. Hobbs, EdD, MSN, RN, FNP-BC, ACNP-BC, AOCNP, CNE
FNP Coordinator
Kerri L. Outlaw, DNP, PMHNP-BC, CNS, RN
PMHNP Coordinator
Staci A. Simmons, DNP, CRNP, CPNP-AC
DNP Coordinator
Monika Wedgeworth, EdD, RN, CNE
Nurse Educator Coordinator
Teresa D. Welch, EdD, MSN, RN, NEA-BC
Nurse Executive Coordinator