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DNP Purpose and Outcomes

The purpose of the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program is to prepare advanced practice nurses at the highest professional level of nursing practice and to advance the application of nursing knowledge for the purpose of improving health care to diverse populations.

Nurses, who wish to continue their areas of advanced practice, administration or staff development, may consider the DNP option.


This DNP program is based on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice and was approved by the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning for implementation in fall 2009.

In the DNP program, you will gain the tools you need to excel in any advanced practice nursing setting. By the end of the program, you will be able to:

  • Develop and manage innovative health services to improve access, quality and health outcomes.
  • Enhance the culture of safety in health systems through the application of information technologies and evidenced-based practice.
  • Translate practice inquiry to improve health services delivery for diverse populations.
  • Provide leadership for multidisciplinary teams through analysis of critical indicators and/or health systems to improve health status.
  • Design culturally competent health services for vulnerable populations.
  • Translate theoretical knowledge into practice to improve health outcomes.
  • Examine, implement and evaluate the modification of evidenced-based health services, health systems and health policies.
  • Develop and test new models of care that address the complex health needs of individuals, families and rural populations.


The DNP program is supported by the Mississippi Educational Consortium for the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (MECDNP), which includes the following schools, the University of Mississippi Medical Center, Alcorn State University, Delta State University, Mississippi University for Women and the University of Southern Mississippi. 

Clinical practicum

Clinical practicum experience offers students the opportunity to develop and synthesize the knowledge and skills required to demonstrate doctoral-level competency in a specialized nursing practice area. The clinical practicum requirement for the DNP program meets the AACN requirement of 1,000 clinical hours. In the post-master program, students receive 600 clinical practicum hours through coursework. The hours include those required to complete the DNP project.

DNP residency

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing requires that DNP graduates have at least 1,000 hours of clinical experience. The DNP program has practicum hours, residency hours and DNP project hours that make up this total. Post-master’s DNP students who have advanced practice RN licensure may have transferable clinical hours from their MSN program.