Doctor of Nursing Practice

Dr. Stacey Smith

Dr. Stacey Smith DNP '14


The faculty of the DNP program at ISU was a big support and guided me from the development of my research statement to the completion of an article describing my project that I will submit for publication to a nursing journal. I felt such a sense of pride when I received my DNP degree on May 3, 2014. This accomplishment has fostered a sense of responsibility in me to promote the professional growth of Advanced Practice Nurses to ensure excellence of care for our communities.

Read Stacey's story

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program at Indiana State University prepares nurses to be innovative leaders and environmental change agents to transform our healthcare delivery system. The DNP represents the highest level of preparation in nursing practice, broadening the graduate’s ability to process and translate new evidence into nursing practice.  This ability is essential to maximizing the safety and efficacy of nursing practice to improve patient outcomes.

The DNP program is a 39-credit hour post master’s program requiring a total of 1,200 hours of supervised clinical preceptorship.  Individuals may apply 700 hours of formal, supervised, clinical hours from their master's degree toward the doctoral degree requirements.  Students who have not completed 700 post baccalaureate hours prior to entry are eligible to utilize the portfolio process outlined in the Portfolio Guidelines Document.  Consistent with other DNP programs, there is no dissertation requirement.  Students complete a DNP scholarly project based on their individual expertise and interests.

The DNP program is in the Department of Advanced Practice Nursing in the College of Nursing, Health, and Human Services. The essential concepts of the DNP (The DNP Essentials) curriculum as approved by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, forms the basis of our program, which is fully accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. (ACEN).

The program offers full-time and part-time plans of study tailored to meet the needs of the working healthcare professional. The DNP program began in the Fall of 2010 and has graduated three cohorts.


1.  Integrate scientific knowledge to influence health policy and decision-making through leadership, collaboration, and interprofessional action at the organizational, local, regional, national, and global levels.
2.  Develop and evaluate care delivery approaches that meet current and future needs of patient populations based on scientific findings in nursing and other clinical sciences, as well as organizational, political, and economic sciences.
3.  Use analytic methods to critically appraise existing literature and other evidence to determine and implement the best evidence for clinical practice.
4.  Design, select, use, and evaluate programs that evaluate and monitor outcomes of care, care systems, and quality improvement including consumer use of health care information systems.
5.  Advocate for social justice, equity, and ethical policies within all healthcare arenas.
6.  Employ effective communication and collaborative skills in the development and implementation of practice models, peer review, practice guidelines, health policy, standards of care, and/or other scholarly products.
7.  Synthesize concepts related to clinical prevention and population health in developing, implementing, and evaluating interventions to address health promotion/disease prevention efforts, in care of individuals, aggregates, or populations.
8.  Demonstrate independent advanced practice clinical judgment, systems thinking, and accountability in designing, delivering, and evaluating evidence-based care to improve patient outcomes.

SYCAMORE DNP’s -  “Leading the way in education and evidence-based practice”

Maybe you see yourself in clinical instruction, involved in research, or perhaps continuing your current career with increased skill and greater awareness of the dynamic healthcare environment.
Our curriculum is compatible with your individual interests and goals, designed to meet the needs of the working professional and offers full-time and part-time plans of study. 
Our unique online learning format is user friendly and convenient and, unlike your many other competing priorities, is there when you have time. 
Whatever your career path, Indiana State University will be there when you are ready to start your clinical doctorate.

The application deadlines for the Doctor of Nursing Practice are February 1 and September 1.  Get started on your journey today!