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Nurse Practitioner Program

Doctor of Nursing Practice — Program Overview

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) — it's the pinnacle of the nursing profession. And you don't have to leave Siouxland to reach it!

Demand for quality health care is ballooning, and providers everywhere seek highly educated, well-trained nurse practitioners to meet the need. The standard for training those nurse practitioners is the DNP. If you're already a baccalaureate-prepared nurse, our DNP program is designed to take you to the next level. While earning your DNP, you can choose between two tracks: 

Family Nurse Practitioner
Prepare yourself to serve as a general primary health care provider, much like a family doctor.

Adult/Gerontology Practitioner
Learn to serve primary health care in multiple settings, particularly while caring for an aging population.


Our hybrid DNP program, which takes 4½ years to complete, offers a mixture of online and on-site classes. It is a collaboration between the Department of Nursing at Briar Cliff and the College of Nursing at South Dakota State University. You'll complete 51 credits through Briar Cliff and 28 credits through SDSU's campus in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Core Courses

BiOL 623 - Advanced Pathophysiology
MATH 540 - Biostatistics
NURS 510 - Heath Care System: Paradigms, Policy And Ethics
NURS 520 - Foundations Of Advanced Nursing Practice
NURS 529 - Research Methods for Advanced Practice Nursing
NURS 631 - Advanced Health Assessment
NURS 632 - Advanced Practice Skills Lab
NURS 645 - Advanced Pharmacology
NURS 675 - Cultural Competence in Health Care
NURS 715 - Primary Care of the Adult I
NURS 730 - Primary Care of the Adult II
NURS 740 - FNP Practicum I
NURS 741 - FNP Practicum II
NURS 742 - FNP Practicum III
NURS 743 - FNP Practicum IV
NURS 750 - Transformational Leadership
NURS 760 - Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Throughout the Lifespan
NURS 835 - Ethical Issues Influencing Practice and Research in Health Disparities
NURS 850 - Philosophical and Theoretical Foundations for Evidence Based Care
NURS 855 - Translational Research in Healthcare
NURS 860 - Health Operations & Financial Management for Nurse Leaders
NURS 865 - DNP Capstone
NURS 870 - DNP Practice Innovation Project

Additional Program Requirements

Before enrolling, students must prove completion of a baccalaureate degree in nursing from a CCNE- or NLNAC-accredited program, with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Student must also provide evidence of licensure as an R.N. and verify a minimum of 2,000 hours of nursing practice. For more info, see the DNP admissions checklist.

Completion of the D.N.P. program requires a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Students pursuing the Family Nurse Practitioner track must also take NURS 710, while those pursuing the Adult/Gerontology Practitioner track must take NURS 735


Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education

American Association of Colleges of Nursing

Briar Cliff Department of Nursing