Curriculum | Chatham University, Pittsburgh, PA

Chatham University

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Curriculum

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a clinical doctorate that prepares nurses to practice as clinical leaders in the health care delivery system. Graduates of the DNP program have a skill set and competencies to function in clinical leadership roles depending on student interest and career trajectory.

The DNP program at Chatham University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001 (202) 463-6930.

Program Structure:
The DNP program is a low-residency, writing intensive, online program. Students can complete the 27 credit DNP program in 12 months of full time study, including 500 supervised practice experience hours. Part-time study also is available. The program includes a mandatory on-campus residency and culminates in an evidence- based practice clinical immersion capstone experience. Practice experiences are completed at approved clinical sites with the guidance of an approved preceptor. Cohorts are admitted each Fall and Spring.

Approved DNP Practice Experience Categories by Course

Program Requirements

+Degree Requirements

27 Credits

NUR700 Structure & App of Contemporary Nursing Knowledge

This course introduces the advanced practice nurse to the world of contemporary nursing knowledge, as formalized in conceptual models of nursing and nursing theories applied to clinical practice. There is emphasis on the metaparadigm, philosophies, conceptual models, theories, and empirical indicators linking them to clinical practice.

3
NUR702 Developing Evidence-Based Practice

This course prepares students with skills and competencies needed to build and assimilate knowledge for establishing a scholarly trajectory at a high level of complexity. This clinical course consists of 125 clinical hours and is the foundation for the culminating Capstone project focusing on improving practice.

3
NUR703 Ethics and Public Policy in Healthcare Delivery

This course focuses on ethical issues and public policy in healthcare. Students develp strategies to manage ethical dilemmas and analyze health policy to educate, advocate and provide leadership in shaping healthcare policy.

3
NUR704 Quality Improvement in Health Care

This course focuses on quality improvement initiatives, including the protection of human subjects. The emphasis is on skills and competencies needed to provide leadership in quality and systems change. This course includes 125 clinical hours and is the foundation for the culminating Capstone project focusing on improved practice and outcomes.

3
NUR705 Advancing Practice: Scholarship and Grant Writing

This course provides further investigation of evidence-based practice advancing nursing leadership and clinical outcomes. Students will develop skills for clinical scholarship including manuscript development and grant writing.

3
NUR706 Communication and Collaboration for Health Care Leadership

This course focuses on strategies to improve professional communication with peers, subordinates, and patients in the health care environment.

3
NUR707 Information Technology and Data-Driven Decision Making

This course provides students with an opportunity to examine the value of technology and information systems to support evidence-based practice, guidelines and policy across various health settings. Various methods for gathering, managing, and synthesizing data will be introduced in order to conduct analyses for quality improvement, financial and outcome evaluations.

3
NUR799 Capstone Experience

This course provides an opportunity for the student to implement and evaluate a planned evidence-based practice change project. This project lays the groundwork for future scholarship. This course culminates in a tangible and deliverable academic product derived from the practice immersion experience. A total of 250 clinical hours are included in the course.

6

+Practice Experience Requirements

DNP students are required to complete 500 practice experience hours during the program in NUR 702 (125 hours), NUR 704 (125 hours) and NUR 799 (250 hours). The DNP practice experience is an advanced immersion experience that allows DNP students an opportunity that includes, but is not limited to: gaining and applying advanced skills in the clinical setting; linking policy making within clinical systems, or local, regional, or national organizations; translation of evidence-based research into practice through policy or practice innovation; and to serve as change agents in health care delivery settings. A qualified preceptor and program experience site are identified and approved during the first semester of coursework. A signed affiliation agreement must be in place with the practice experience agency prior to engaging in any practice experiences. It is the responsibility of the student to comply with agency requirements specific to physical examinations, immunizations, CRP certification, drug screening, and criminal record background checks, and submit all associated documentation directly to the program experience agency.

+Transfer Credits

Given the integrated nature of the courses, all 27 credits of the DNP program must be completed at Chatham University.

+Protection of Human Subjects

To ensure for the protection of the rights and welfare of human subjects, all students enrolled in the doctor of nursing practice (DNP) program at Chatham are required to submit their proposed evidence-based practice change project plan to an Institutional Review Board (IRB), or faculty approval substitute, for review and decision prior to implementing any aspect of the project.

+Deferral of Admission and Leave of Absence

Occasionally, a student wishes to defer their entrance into the MSN or DNP nursing program following their initial admission. Deferrals for enrollment from term to term will be largely discouraged unless they are requested due to a University decision/errors, or hardship such as military sickness, sickness or death in the family. Deferrals can only be applied to the next term of admission for the program. Students are always encouraged to submit a new application for each term for which they wish to enroll. Applications are at no cost to the student, so there is not a financial burden for application fees. Due to the integrated nature of the DNP courses, a personal or financial leave of absence is not permitted. Students requiring a medical leave of absence must submit a written request and documentation from a physician to the program director for review and decision.

+BSN to DNP Executive Track

BSN to DNP Executive Track

Typical Program Schedule

Students can enroll in a full-time or part-time track

Part-Time DNP Course Track
FALL START

1st Semester 2nd Semester 3rd Semester 4th Semester 5th Semester
FALL SPRING SUMMER FALL SPRING
NUR 700 NUR 704* NUR 706 NUR 703 NUR 799*
NUR 702* NUR 707   NUR 705  
      Residency  

Full Time DNP Course Track
FALL START

1st Semester 2nd Semester 3rd Semester
FALL SPRING SUMMER
NUR 700 NUR 704* NUR 705
NUR 702* NUR 706 NUR 799*
NUR 703 NUR 707  
  Residency  

Part Time DNP Course Track
SPRING START

1st Semester 2nd Semester 3rd Semester 4th Semester 5th Semester
SPRING SUMMER FALL SPRING SUMMER
NUR 700 NUR 704* NUR 706 NUR 703 NUR 799*
NUR 702* NUR 707   NUR 705  
      Residency  

Full Time DNP Course Track
SPRING START

1st Semester 2nd Semester 3rd Semester
SPRING SUMMER FALL
NUR 700 NUR 704* NUR 705
NUR 702* NUR 706 NUR 799*
NUR 703 NUR 707 Residency

* Indicates practice experience course

Advising

Students will be assigned an advisor who will assist them in making sure they are taking the right courses and proceeding on schedule to complete their degree.

Transfer Credit Policy

Given the integrated nature of the courses, all 27 credits of the DNP program must be completed at Chatham University.