Online Post-Master's Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree

The online Nursing Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program prepares you for specialized advanced nursing practice with the highest level of scientific knowledge and practice expertise. This DNP program is designed for practicing MSN / APNs as a year-round, part-time program to offer you flexibility and convenience.


The completely online, practice-focused Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program prepares you for specialized advanced nursing practice with the highest level of scientific knowledge and practice expertise. It is offered by the UNC School of Nursing through UNC Extended Campus, and begins each Fall via a competitive admission process.

DNP – The Terminal Nursing Practice Degree

Graduates of this doctoral program will be prepared as clinical experts with a focus on the critical thinking, leadership and political policy skills needed to advocate and create changes in healthcare practice at the individual, population and organizational systems levels.

UNC nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Nurse Practitioner Job & Salary Growth

The median salary for a Registered Nurse as of 2022 was $81,220.

However, the median salary for a Nurse Practitioner (a role supported by this program) was $121,610 and NP employment is projected to grow 44.5% from 2022-2032.

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Can Be Completed Fully Online

The doctoral program is 44 credit hours, which includes required practicum scholarship hours.

  • You can complete this year-round, part-time program in 2+ years. Your program completion/graduation timing will depend on your progression with program courses, the DNP Scholarly Project and required electives.
  • Coursework is completely online.


A required half-day orientation, which you can attend online or in-person on campus (Greeley, Colorado), will be held the week prior to the start of fall courses in August. You will meet program faculty, administrators and fellow students; obtain resources for program success; and receive individual advising.

Coursework (44 Credit Hours)

To see a typical list of courses by term, visit an example Current Students page for this program.

For full program requirement details, see the official program listing in the UNC Graduate Catalog.

Include a Graduate Certificate or Area of Focus

Your elective credits can be chosen to better support your professional interests or to achieve a graduate certificate. Focused elective options include...

  • Nursing Education Graduate Certificate (UNC School of Nursing)
  • Business Focus (through UNC Monfort College of Business)
  • Public Health or Rural Public Health Focus (through UNC/Colorado School of Public Health)

You will work with a faculty advisor to determine elective options to fit your interests and when elective credits are offered. Focus areas will be visible on university transcripts but not on the student degree. Graduate Certificates will receive a hard copy certificate and it will be visible on your transcripts.

Scholarly Project Hours

DNP scholarly project practicum hours are completed via coursework completion. You need a minimum total of 1,000 combined clinical and DNP scholarly project hours to successfully complete your DNP. The hours that you completed in your master’s will count toward those 1,000 hours.

You will work be able to work remotely with your scholarly project advisor for your project proposal and defense. On-campus visits/sessions can be arranged if desired.

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