2018-2019 Graduate Catalog 
    Aug 24, 2019  
2018-2019 Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Nursing (D.N.P.) - Family Nurse Practitioner Specialization (Post Master’s to D.N.P.)

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Program Coordinator/Contact

Mary Minton, Associate Dean for Graduate Nursing
Department of Graduate Nursing
Wagner Hall 217, Box 2275

Program Information

The D.N.P. program was established in 2009. The program was developed in response to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Position Statement on the Practice Doctorate in Nursing. The position statement supported moving the preparation of advanced practice nurses from the M.S. in Nursing to the Doctoral level by the year 2015.

The purpose of the D.N.P. program is to prepare Advanced Practice Nurses (APRNs) to transform clinical practice as expert clinicians and leaders with a special focus on rural and underserved populations.

In addition to delivering evidence-based direct patient care at an advanced practice level to individuals across the lifespan in primary care settings, graduates of the D.N.P. program will learn skills needed to produce and implement valuable evidence to guide practice and are prepared to work collaboratively with rural communities in an effort to reduce health disparities.

Program Outcomes

  • To prepare graduates as clinicians and leaders with a special focus on rural and underserved populations. 
  • To prepare graduates to deliver evidence-based direct patient care to individuals across the lifespan in primary care settings. 
  • To prepare graduates to produce and implement scientific evidence to guide practice. 
  • To prepare graduates to work collaboratively with frontier, urban, and rural communities in an effort to reduce health disparities.

Student Learning Outcomes

At the completion of the program, the graduate will successfully demonstrate the following competencies: 

  • Integrate theoretical and scientific underpinnings of nursing and other disciplines to address emerging healthcare and practice issues.
  • Engage in health policy at all levels to influence healthcare delivery concerns, such as health disparities, cultural sensitivity, ethics, access to care, health finance, and quality of care.
  • Employ evidence-based practice and advanced clinical judgment to comprehensively assess, design, and deliver care for individuals across the lifespan.
  • Demonstrate leadership at the organizational and/or systems level to address health outcomes of individuals and populations though evidence-based initiatives.
  • Utilize advanced nursing knowledge and information systems/technology related to clinical prevention and health promotion to address gaps in healthcare.
  • Collaborate with the interprofessional team in the translation, implementation, analysis, and dissemination of evidence-based practice to improve healthcare outcomes. 

Accreditation, Certification, and Licensure


The Doctor of Nursing Practice at South Dakota State University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, 202-887-6791.


Students must provide evidence of professional registration by submitting a copy of the most current RN license.


After completing the program of study, graduates may be eligible to complete certification through several professional organizations.
Nursing Certification - Family Nurse Practitioner  

Course Delivery Format

Nursing courses are delivered face-to-face and enhanced with web-based instruction. Online course delivery is also offered for specified courses.

Facilities and Services

The College of Nursing provides world-class facilities and a variety of students services and programs for graduate student engagement.

Available Options for Graduate Degrees

Doctor of Nursing Practice Post Masters to D.N.P. 69 Credits

Core Requirements

* Students who have not previously completed either NURS 623 , NURS 631 , or PHA 645  OR equivalent coursework within the previous five years, will be required to complete those courses as part of this program option. All previous coursework will need to be evaluated for equivalency and approved by the Associate Dean for Graduate Nursing in order to be included on the student’s Plan of Study.

For additional information, refer to the Graduate Nursing Department webpage.

Additional Admissions Requirements

GRE: Not required
TOEFL: Score of 600 paper-based, 100 Internet-based, OR
IELTS: 7.0 total band

In addition to meeting the Graduate School admission requirements, applicants for graduate study for the Post Master to Doctor of Nursing Practice - Family Nurse Practitioner Specialization must have:

  • Current licensure as a Registered Nurse in the United States or its’ territories prior to enrollment in first graduate nursing course.
  • Bachelor’s degree in nursing from an NLNAC or CCNE Accredited program.
  • Master’s degree in nursing (non-clinical focus) from an NLNAC or CCNE accredited program with a minimum cumulative 3.3 GPA.
  • 1500 hours of documented nursing practice experience prior to the first clinical course.
  • Completed and verified application to the Graduate Nursing program via NursingCAS website.
  • Completion of written response to questions regarding educational goals, scholarly practice interests, and desired practice career.
  • Completed an approved statistical methods course within 5 years of enrollment in the designated research course within the DNP program coursework.
  • Interview with graduate faculty.
  • Applicants who have begun but not completed a graduate nursing program at another college or university must submit a letter to the College of Nursing indicating their reason for leaving that said program.  A letter of recommendation must also be submitted to the College of Nursing from the dean/director of their former program that includes the applicant’s standing in that program upon exit.

General Requirements

Graduate students must consult with their advisor before registering for graduate work.

For additional information refer to the Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree Requirements .

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