Do I need to know my DNP project topic before I apply?
Students undertake a systematic investigation of a clinical or administration-based problem selected by the student and supported by faculty. The student will identify the problem to be addressed, review and critique pertinent literature, and implement and evaluate the project. The designed and approved project will be implemented and within a mentored and supervised clinical immersion experience. The project uses an evidence-based practice model and is systematically developed in consultation with the student’s Doctor of Nursing Practice and scholarly project chair who evaluates each step of the process (200 clinical hours).
Students are encouraged to look at their own practice or a health system to determine any gaps in care, steps to improve the patient experience or patient outcomes, patient education, staff education, etc. Often, students collaborate with a health system on the needs already identified by the system. In fact, that is sometimes a very good DNP project because the health facility already recognizes the need so solve the identified problem/issue.
Will I be able to work while pursing my DNP?
While it might be helpful to have ideas in mind for the project, it is not required. Topics are typically something you are passionate about and may have experienced firsthand, perhaps a quality control such as preventing readmissions, reducing no shows for appointments, improving compliance with plan of care, and bringing measures of chronic illness into control.
How long will it take me to complete the DNP program?
This will depend on your schedule and if you are a full-time or part-time student. Adjustments to your work schedule may be required to accommodate the clinical practice hours and project hours requirements. Please note, weekend and evening hours cannot be guaranteed and many mentors you may work with such as hospital administrators often work more traditional 9-5 hours.
How many graduate courses can I transfer into the program?
The online MSN to DNP program can be completed in as few as 5 semesters (1 year and 8 months) for full-time students, or 8 semesters (2 years and 8 months) for part-time students. However, the length of time to complete the program can vary from student to student; examples include personal time management and individual DNP project progression to completion.
How many project hours are earned in this program?
A student may transfer up to 9 credits toward their DNP program, subject to approval post acceptance.
What clinical placement support is afforded to DNP students?
The Walsh online MSN to DNP program is designed to provide students with 500 practice hours toward their DNP. All students are expected to complete a minimum of 1,000 post-baccalaureate advanced nursing practice hours to earn their DNP. Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) typically accrue at least 500 hours in their master’s program. The applicant will need to have these prior hours verified by the university that conferred their MSN. Coursework is available to students who enter the DNP program with less than 500 clinical hours to help meet the minimum 1,000 clinical practicum hours mandated by the AACN for a DNP degree. It is recommended that any additional hours required be completed early in the program.
Walsh ensures students are adequately prepared throughout the placement process, understanding the required direct and indirect clinical hours necessary for graduation and certification. Due to the nature of the hours, DNP students must be highly involved in the process. Clinical placements and DNP project hours may be completed in your current place of employment; however, they must be outside of your current scope of work. Placements are centered around leadership, providing exposure to the delivery and improvement of quality outcomes within health systems and organizations. The clinical placement coordinators will collaborate with you to plan and source your clinical experiences.
The master’s degree program in nursing and doctor of nursing practice program at Walsh University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org).