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DNP Degree Admissions

Alumni Express Application

International Students Admission Information

Applicants please note:
Individuals planning to practice in Pennsylvania who have been convicted of any crime (felony or misdemeanor) in any court or who have any criminal charges pending/unresolved may be prohibited from licensure or re-licensure as a Registered Nurse OR may be mandated to complete additional requirements in order to be eligible for licensure, as determined by the PA State Board of Nursing. Any student with such a history must contact the PA State Board of Nursing Bureau of Health Professionals Monitoring (717-783-4857) for guidance prior to enrollment.

Students who plan on applying for licensure outside of the state of Pennsylvania should contact the State Board of Nursing in their respective state.


  1. A Master's degree in Nursing* in an advanced nursing practice specialty from a nationally accredited CCNE (Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education) or ACEN (Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing) program is preferred. 
* Applicants who hold a non-nursing master's degree will be evaluated for admission on an individual basis. This process may entail review of a portfolio or other evaluative mechanisms, and may require completion of some master's level nursing course(s).
  1. Certification as an advanced practice nurse (if applicable). Where a legal certification is necessary to practice in an advanced role, as with nurse practitioners, the student must hold that certification. In other specialties where legal certification is not required for practice, such as forensic nurses, clinical specialists, and nurse executives, certification is not required.
  2. If applicable, a letter validating the number of clinical hours completed in your Master's program.
  3. GPA of 3.0 or higher
  4. Current unencumbered license as a Registered Nurse
  5. Undergraduate or graduate course in Statistics (3 credits) with a grade of "B" or better
  6. Successful phone interview with a DNP Admissions Committee member
  7. Meet the Technical Standards for Admission.
  8. If previously enrolled in a DNP Program, a letter of good standing from the Director of the Nursing Program is required.

Mandatory On-campus Requirement
Attendance is mandatory at the on-campus Doctoral Week in May.

Transfer Credits (Advanced Standing) Requests
Transfer credits must meet the following criteria:

  • Maximum of 9 doctoral level credits from an accredited university and approved nursing program may be transferred
  • Minimum grade of "B" or higher
  • Credits may not have been applied to a previous degree
  • Credits taken within the past 5 years

Procedure for requesting Transfer Credits:

  1. Complete the Request for Advanced Standing Form.
  2. Request official transcript(s) for all requested transfer courses.
  3. Submit the Request for Advanced Standing form,  the official transcript(s), and the course syllabus with other application materials.
  4. Your request will be evaluated by the DNP Admissions Committee.


The admissions process for nursing graduate studies is handled exclusively by the School of Nursing.

1. Complete the online application. If transcripts will be sent under a different name, i.e. maiden or former name, please indicate that name.

2. Provide two reference letters - preferably one professional and one academic - or two professional. Send this link to your references to complete: Graduate Reference Form
By forwarding this link to your references, you waive your right to view the recommendations.

3. Mail the following to the School of Nursing - DNP Program:

  • Current curriculum vitae (CV): a complete resume with dated work and practice, honors, awards, publications and presentations
  • Copy of current unencumbered RN license
  • Copies of current advance practice certifications
  • Formal goal statement regarding your interest in DNP study( 2-3 typed pages, double spaced, 12 font, on separate sheet). Please base your response on the Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice and include:
    - Reasons for pursuing DNP - professional plans and career goals
    - Doctor of Nursing Practice Project topic or idea
    - Any past experiences to area of interest or advancing career
    - Any past achievements in nursing such as professional organization memberships or positions, awards, scholarships, nominations, certifications, committee/project work, scholarly publications, other accomplishments or abilities.
  • The Request for Advanced Standing Form and supporting documents, if requesting advanced standing

4. Arrange for these sealed documents to be sent directly to the School of Nursing - DNP Program (If transcripts will be sent under a different name, i.e. maiden or former name, please indicate that name):

  • If you have ever attended Duquesne University, the University Registrar's Office will automatically forward an official transcript for any Duquesne University coursework directly to the School of Nursing on your behalf. This transcript will be provided as a courtesy and free of charge. No transcripts from schools other than Duquesne University will be forwarded from the University Registrar's Office. You will need to request other transcripts from the originating school(s).
  • Official BSN transcript
  • Official MSN transcript
  • Official transcript showing undergraduate or graduate statistics, if not included on BSN or Master's degree program transcript
  • Official transcripts of graduate courses, if requesting advanced standing

5. If you are interested in graduate loans, you must complete the
Graduate Financial Aid Application and mail directly to the Financial Aid Office.

6. If you are accepted, a non-refundable $250.00 deposit will be required to reserve your place in class.

DNP Special Status, Non-degree