Online BSN to DNP Program

Each day, you’re compelled to care for patients. Nursing isn’t just your job — it’s a vocation and lifelong calling. Practicing since earning your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), you strive to uplift everyone you come in contact with through better access to and higher-quality care. To direct outcomes and elevate the healthcare field, take the next step in your career with Abilene Christian University’s online BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program.

The typical pathway requires driven individuals like yourself to grow your leadership skills with a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and then aspire to a DNP to further expand your knowledge. Yet, the healthcare field presently finds itself in a quandary: despite a nursing shortage, candidates are expected to possess more advanced credentials to better serve patients and tackle challenges head-on while advocating on behalf of their communities. ACU’s online BSN to DNP program provides an accelerated path, allowing you to bypass the MSN while uncovering your leadership potential. 

Each day, you’re compelled to care for patients. Nursing isn’t just your job — it’s a vocation and lifelong calling. Practicing since earning your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), you strive to uplift everyone you come in contact with through better access to and higher-quality care. To direct outcomes and elevate the healthcare field, take the next step in your career with Abilene Christian University’s online BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program.

The typical pathway requires driven individuals like yourself to grow your leadership skills with a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and then aspire to a DNP to further expand your knowledge. Yet, the healthcare field presently finds itself in a quandary: despite a nursing shortage, candidates are expected to possess more advanced credentials to better serve patients and tackle challenges head-on while advocating on behalf of their communities. ACU’s online BSN to DNP program provides an accelerated path, allowing you to bypass the MSN while uncovering your leadership potential. 

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Advance Patient Care as a Nurse Leader

As a nursing professional, you never remain still. ACU’s online BSN to DNP program welcomes your tenacious spirit to improve care delivery with coursework and in-person clinical assignments that can be completed around your existing obligations. As you move steadfast toward your goals, our vibrant, virtual, Christ-centered community supports you during your endeavor. 

About the Program

BSN to DNP

Blending nursing practice and theory, ACU’s Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)-accredited online BSN to DNP program gives you the opportunity to pursue an advanced degree around your schedule. Graduate with a DNP in approximately three years, ready to pursue nurse leadership and educator roles, advocate for patients, and improve community outcomes for nursing facilities through research and evidence-based care

Program Structure

All the Details on Your Degree

The online BSN to DNP consists of three key parts: an 18 credit-hour pathway sequence, the DNP core, and a specialized concentration in Executive Nursing Leadership. Following successful completion of pathway courses, you’ll transition directly into the DNP coursework with no additional application. Along the way, you’ll practice what you’ve learned through 500 clinical hours plus two projects designed to be completed in your current workplace. Please note that the 18 credit-hour pathway does not result in a standalone MSN degree. 

TIMEFRAME

18 hours
Minimum of 12 months

EXAMPLE COURSEWORK

Advanced Leadership
Spirituality & Nursing Care
Population Health
Nurse Leaders as Stewards in Healthcare

DEPARTMENT

UPCOMING START DATES

August 23, 2022
October 18, 2022

COMMON JOB TITLES

Academic Nurse Leader
Chief Nursing Officer (CNO)
Director of Nursing
Lead Clinician
Director of Clinical Services
Director of Advanced Practice Nurses
Public Health Coordinator

Curriculum

Deepen your knowledge of nursing with the 18 credit-hour pathway sequence before honing your leadership and healthcare management skills during the program’s DNP portion. 500 clinical hours help you put what you know into practice and understand how your knowledge can shape patient outcomes. 

On the pathway toward a leadership or nurse administrative role, you’ll synthesize everything acquired thus far through two projects requiring you to develop and implement a clinical program. You’ll then present your ideas through a paper for review. 

Pathway Courses

Begin where your BSN left off to further explore key nursing disciplines and how research and evidence-based practice influence patient care outcomes for the better.

During these introductory courses, you’ll:

  • connect theory, research, practice and evidence-based care to promote more beneficial outcomes; 
  • broaden what you know about pathophysiology and pharmacologic therapies to provide more informed care along the lifespan; 
  • discover the importance of nurse leadership on organizational processes and care outcomes; 
  • understand how to serve diverse clients through health assessments and physical examinations; and
  • prepare to influence organizational policy by learning how to design, establish and evaluate healthcare quality initiatives.

DNP Courses

After the pathway sequence, you’ll begin the DNP core, designed to offer insight into expectations for advanced nursing professionals as patient advocates, scholars and leaders. Courses expand upon the leadership, organization and management competencies essential for the healthcare field, touch on technology and data integration and continue to explore topics related to epidemiology and making research-backed, evidence-based care decisions.

Master how to train and direct teams of healthcare workers, how finances affect a practice, and the impact of chronic health conditions on service delivery and care expectations.

Meet the Program Director

Dr. Linda Gibson, BSN to DNP, Doctor of Nursing Practice

Dr. Linda Gibson, BSN to DNP

Dr. Linda Gibson is the program director for the BSN to DNP and Doctor of Nursing Practice programs. Dr. Gibson has been an associate professor within ACU’s School of Nursing for the past three years, though her teaching experience spans 30 years. Much of her clinical experience comes from a VA hospital, and her MSN specialty areas include Medical/Surgical Nursing (RNP), Teaching/Evaluation, and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing (CNS). As a lifelong learner, she went on to complete her DNP and is currently pursuing a homeopathic degree. Dr. Gibson lives in the hills of Tennessee surrounded by her children and grandchildren.

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Doctor of Nursing Practice

Become the voice patients need to receive timely, appropriate care. As you scale up your BSN with a more thorough and nuanced array of leadership and clinical skills, earning your DNP degree will prepare you to embark on a career as a:

  • chief nursing officer (CNO);
  • director of nursing;
  • nurse administrator;
  • director of clinical services;
  • director of advanced practice nurses;
  • public health program director or coordinator;
  • informaticist; or
  • nurse educator.
BSN to DNP

To be considered for admission, students must:

  • Complete the online program application accompanied by a non-refundable processing fee.
  • Submit official transcripts from the accredited colleges or universities that awarded the baccalaureate degree to the applicant sent in a registrar’s sealed and stamped/signed envelope or official electronic transcripts.
  • Have a minimum nursing cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Supply two professional recommendation letters that attest to the applicant’s academic abilities, character, and professional abilities.
  • Author a 500-word purpose statement outlining the applicant’s interest in the BSN to DNP program and their career professional goals (written in APA format).
  • Submit a professional CV or resume.
  • Provide proof of unencumbered registered nurse licensure in the United States.
  • Have completed an undergraduate level statistics course with a “C” or better.
CCNE Accredited logo

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Abilene Christian University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791