University Bulletin 2022-23

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Nursing Practice (DNP) - MSN to DNP for Advanced Practice Nursing Roles

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Doctor Of Nursing Practice (DNP)

MSN to DNP for Advanced Practice Nursing Roles Pathway (12 Courses, 36 Credit Hours)

  1. DNP Core Courses - (8 Courses, 24 Credit hours)

  2. DNP Residency Courses - (4 Courses, 12 Credit hours)

Course Requirements 

DNP Core Courses - (8 Courses, 24 credit Hours)

  1. 24 Credit hours:  NU 607, NU 608, NU 610, NU 611, NU 612, NU 613, NU 615, NU 616

DNP Residency Courses - (4 Courses, 12 Credit Hours)

  1. 12 Credit hours:  Adult-Gerontological Acute Care Nurse Practitioner:  AHN 604, AHN 617, AHN 618, AHN 619

  2. 12 Credit hours:  Adult-Gerontological Primary Care Nurse Practitioner:  AHN 693, AHN 694, AHN 695, AHN 696

  3. 12 Credit hours:  Adult-Gerontological Clinical Nurse Specialist:  AHN 634, AHN 635, AHN 636, AHN 637

  4. 12 Credit hours:  Dual Role (Family NP/Adult-Gerontological Acute Care NP)
    Option a). Family NP:  AHN 680, AH 681, AHN 682, AHN 683 or
    Option b). Adult-Gerontological Acute Care NP:  AHN 670, AHN 671, AHN 672, AHN 673

  5. 12 Credit hours:  Dual Role (Family NP/Emergency NP):  NU 680, NU 681, NU 682, NU 683

  6. 12 Credit hours:  Executive Nursing Administration:  NU 661, NU 662, NU 663, NU 664

  7. 12 Credit hours:  Family Nurse Practitioner:  CMN 680, CMN 681, CMN 682, CMN 683

  8. 12 Credit hours:  Neonatal Nurse Practitioner:  MCN 674, MCN 675, MCN 676, MCN 677

  9. 12 Credit hours:  Nursing Informatics:  NU 656, NU 657, NU 658, NU 659

  10. 12 Credit hours:  Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner:  MCN 604, MCN 617, MCN 618, MCN 619

  11. 12 Credit hours:  Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner:  MCN 654, MCN 655, MCN 656, MCN 657

  12. 12 Credit hours:  Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner:  CMN 604, CMN 617, CMN 618, CMN 619

  13. 12 Credit hours:  Public Health Administration:  CMN 643, CMN 644, CMN 645, CMN 646

  14. 12 Credit hours:  Women's Health Nurse Practitioner:  MCN 644, MCN 645, MCN 646, MCN 647

Subspecialties (8-11 Credit Hours)

Subspecialties are elective courses students may add to the degree program.

  1. 11 Credit hours:  Addictions Nursing:  HSC 580, HSC 581, HSC 582, NU 510, NU 511, NU 512  (Elective NU 513). May be added to any concentration.

  2. 9 Credit hours:  Advanced Forensic Nursing:  NU 500, NU 502, NU 503, NU 504, NU 505  May be added to any concentration.

  3. 8 Credit hours: Cardiovascular: AHN 630, AHN 631, AHN 632, AHN 633 May be added to Adult-Gerontological Acute NP, Adult-Gerontological Primary Care NP, Dual Role (Family NP/Adult-Gerontological Acute Care NP), and Dual Role (Family NP/Emergency NP), Family NP, Women’s Health NP, Post-Graduate Certificate Emergency NP, and any Adult-Gerontological CNS student with a strong background in cardiovascular and/or acute care nursing.

  4. 8 Credit hours:  Clinical Lipidology:  HSC 595, HSC 596, HSC 597, HSC 598  May be added to Adult-Gerontological Primary Care NP, Adult-Gerontological Acute NP, Adult-Gerontological CNS, Family NP, Dual Role (Family NP/Adult-Gerontological Acute NP), Dual Role (Family NP/Emergency NP), Women's Health NP, and Post-Graduate Certificate Emergency NP.

  5. 8 Credit hours: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Healthcare Subspecialty: HSC 501, HSC 502, HSC 503, HSC 504 May be added to any concentration.

  6. 15 Credit hours:  Emergency Nurse Practitioner:  NU 570, NU 571, NU 572, NU 573, NU 574, NU 575, NU 576, NU 577  May be added to Family NP, Dual Role (Family NP/Adult-Gerontological Acute Care NP), or taken as a Post Graduate Certificate if already Family NP certified.

  7. 11 Credit hours:  Nurse Educator:  NU 620, NU 621, NU 622, NU 623  May be added to any concentration.

  8. 9 Credit hours:  Palliative Care:  AHN 530, AH 531, AHN 532, AHN 533  May be added to any concentration. 

Elective Courses - (1-3 Credit Hours)

  1.  1 Credit hour:  NU 509 Bioethics in Advanced Practice Nursing

  2. 3 Credit hours:  NU 597 Introduction to Scholarly Writing

  3. 3 Credit hours:  HSC 500 Addressing Gender Discrimination and Disparities in Healthcare

  4. 1 Credit hour:  HSC 573 Responsible Prescribing of Commonly Used Drugs

  5. 1 Credit hour: HSC 510 Interprofessional Teams for Behavioral Healthcare in Primary Care Seminar

  6. 1 Credit hour: HSC 511 Interprofessional Teams and Telehealth Delivery of Integrated Behavioral Healthcare Seminar

  7. 1 Credit hour: HSC 512 Motivational Interviewing and Trauma Informed Care in Interprofessional Behavioral Healthcare Seminar


Additional Information 

Doctor Of Nursing Practice Degree Program

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a professional degree and prepares graduates to provide the most advanced level of nursing care for individuals and communities. This includes the direct care of individual patients, management of care for individuals and populations, administration of health care and nursing systems, and the development and implementation of health policy. The program is designed to be in compliance with The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice as put forth by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

The College of Nursing has several pathways, specialization, and sub-specialization options within the DNP program. The pathways include the MSN to DNP for Advanced Nursing Practice roles, MSN to DNP adding a new advanced practice certification area, MSN to DNP Clinical Nurse Leader Bridge to Executive Nursing Administration, and the BSN to DNP.

Areas Of Specialization

Several concentration areas are offered to meet the career goals of students. Available Nurse Practitioner options include Adult-Gerontological Acute Care Nursing, Adult-Gerontological Primary Care Nursing, Dual Role (Family Nursing/Adult-Gerontological Acute Care Nursing), Dual Role (Family Nursing/Emergency Nursing), Family Nursing, Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing, Neonatal Nursing, Pediatric Acute Care Nursing, Pediatric Primary Care Nursing, Women's Health Nursing. Clinical Nurse Specialist is available in Adult-Gerontological Nursing. Concentrations are also available for students pursuing careers in Executive Nursing Administration, Nursing Informatics, and Clinical Nurse Leader Bridge to DNP Executive Nursing Administration. Emergency Nursing is offered only as a post-graduate certificate. Sub-specializations are available in Advanced Forensic Nursing Care, Cardiovascular, Clinical Lipidology, Nursing Addictions, Nursing Education, and Palliative Care.

Doctor Of Nursing Practice Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Doctor of Nursing Practice program, graduates should be able to:

  1. Assume organizational and system leadership in the analysis, delivery, and management of nursing care.
  2. Implement the highest level of advanced nursing care to produce high-quality, cost-effective outcomes for diverse patient outcomes.
  3. Use theories, concepts, and analytic methodologies to design, implement, and evaluate practice by applying evidence to transform nursing systems.
  4. Contribute to the knowledge of best-practices and dissemination of outcomes through professional writing and presentations.
  5. Develop practice standards based on the integration of ethics and evidence-based nursing care.
  6. Build interdisciplinary professional collaboration through leadership and mentorship.

MSN To DNP For Advanced Nursing Roles Pathway

The DNP curriculum consists of 36 Credit hours for the student holding a Master of Science in Nursing degree with preparation in an area of advanced practice nursing. Students who graduated with an MSN from the University of South Alabama College of Nursing and completed the following courses NU 607, NU 608, NU 610, and NU 613 during the MSN coursework may complete the DNP program with an additional 24 Credit hours if the previous coursework is within the seven year limit. The MSN to DNP program can be completed in four semesters of full-time study. Full-time study is defined as six or more Credit hours per semester. Permission to take more than 12 Credit hours per semester must be obtained from the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. Part-time study is also available.

The program must be completed in five years of matriculation for the MSN to DNP for Advanced Practice Nursing Roles Pathway.

Course work for the MSN to DNP program is offered completely on-line. Students are not required to come to campus during the MSN to DNP program. Electives can be taken but are not required. The program does not require a thesis or dissertation; however, students are required to complete a major synthesis project that results in a quality improvement change and has a substantial effect on health care outcomes. Residency requirements for the synthesis project can be completed in the student's home region with an approved mentor. 

Admission Criteria

To be considered for admission to the DNP program, the applicant must meet the following requirements:

  1. Citizen or Permanent Resident of the United States of America.
  2. Current registered nurse licensure with no restrictions. Nurses with any restrictions on their license, including participation in a voluntary disciplinary alternative program, cannot be admitted.
  3. Prior to enrolling in nurse practitioner clinical courses, students are required to have at least 2 years of experience in an area appropriate to their specialty.
  4. Applicants to the MSN to DNP pathway must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 on all MSN work (A=4.0).
  5. MSN degree must be from a regionally accredited institution.
  6. Students must be in good standing with all academic institutions/nursing programs that they have attended in order to be admitted to the DNP program.
  7. Submission of Health Data Forms and evidence of health insurance required upon admission.
  8. Admission will be contingent on a negative drug screen and results of an acceptable background check.

Application Procedures

Admission to the program is limited and selective. Application forms and other information may be obtained from the College of Nursing's website at or by contacting the college directly at College of Nursing, University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama 36688;; Telephone: (251) 445-9400.

    1. Admission to the program is limited and selective.
    2. Completion of Primary and Supplemental Applications is required.
      1. Primary Application submitted through Nursing Centralized Application System (NursingCAS) at Official transcripts of all college and university studies, regardless of the outcome of enrollment, must be sent directly from the home institution to the NursingCAS. These documents become the property of the NursingCAS and will not be returned to the applicant. Applicants are responsible for any fees required by NursingCAS for their services.
      2. Supplemental Application submitted directly to the DNP Office at the USA College of Nursing. This application requires a non-refundable processing fee of $100.00, a Personal Goal Statement, and a résumé /CV documenting clinical experience.
    3. Students are admitted to a specialty track and may not change their track without permission.

Application Deadlines

Applications are accepted three times a year, and must adhere to the following application deadlines:

  • Fall Semester Deadline is March 1
  • Spring Semester Deadline is July 15
  • Summer Semester Deadline is December 1

Academic Progression Policy

Students in the MSN-DNP for Advanced Practice Nursing Roles program must meet the following requirements to progress in the program:

  1. Maintain an overall GPA of 3.0. Any term in which a graduate student drops below a 3.0 Program GPA, the student is placed on probationary status and has a period of two terms to attain a 3.0 Program GPA or be dismissed.
  2. Students in these programs can have a maximum of one “C”.  A student earning a second "C" or lower will be academically dismissed from the program. 
  3. A student earning one grade of "F" in the program will be academically dismissed. 
  4. The final outcome of the DNP Project Planning and Development course and the Progression course is "Successful/ Unsuccessful." Students receiving two grades of “U” in these courses will be academically dismissed.
  5. Failure to show good ethical and moral character including but not limited to any of the following may result in dismissal from the program: (a) conviction of a crime, (b) disciplinary action against a nursing license in Alabama or any other state, (c) positive drug test, (d) adverse background check, or (e) disruptive behavior,  including online behavior.  All students must notify the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or the Dean of the College of Nursing immediately or no later than 48 hours of any of the above stated incidents.
  6. All students must notify the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs or the Dean of the College of Nursing immediately or no later than 48 hours following an arrest. Failure to report an arrest may result in removal from the program.
  7. All students are subject to testing for controlled substances and must submit to random drug testing as requested. A positive test or refusal to submit to testing will result in removal from the program.
  8. All students are subject to a background check and must submit to additional background checks as requested. An adverse finding or refusal to submit to a background check may result in removal from the program.
  9. A student who has been academically dismissed is not eligible for readmission to the DNP program and is not eligible for admission to the MSN program.

DNP Residency Coursework Policy

The DNP Residency Coursework includes the DNP Project Planning and Development, Residency I, Residency II, and Residency III. Students who do not meet all requirements in a course must complete a DNP Progression Course prior to moving forward with the next course in the DNP Residency progression.

Scientific Review Committee Policy

The DNP project will be reviewed by the USA College of Nursing DNP Scientific Review Committee to evaluate rigor and feasibility. The review process will occur during Project Planning and Development. The DNP project must be reviewed by the Scientific Review Committee before enrolling in Residency I.

Graduation Information

The program must be completed in five years of matriculation for the MSN to DNP for Advanced Practice Nursing Roles Pathway. Each candidate for the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree must submit an application for the degree the semester preceding their anticipated graduation through the Registrar's Office. See the University Calendar for specific deadlines.   Deadlines for each semester application are located on the Registrar’s website at


College of Nursing Administrative Staff (251) 445-9400
Dean Heather Hall
Associate Dean for Research Faculty Development, and Evaluation Sharon Fruh
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Leigh Minchew
Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs  Shanda Scott
Director of Clinical Affairs Emily Bentley
Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Shanda Scott
Director of the DNP Program Casey Elkins
Director of Special Projects & Evaluation Rebecca Graves
Professors C. Dolan, S. Fruh, J. Gunn, H. Hall, J. Harris, M. Jacobs, R. Lawson, S. Rider, E. VandeWaa
Associate Professors K. Bydalek,  C. Elkins, R. Graves, K. Hamilton, L. Hammonds, T. Harlan, T. Huey, P. Johnson, S. Lawrence, C. Lewis, A. Marass, K. McCoy, T. McMullan, L. Minchew, C. Myers, M. Nadler, J. Pittman, B. Riley, D. Swanzy, K. Williams, S. Williams, T. Wright
Assistant Professors A. Adams, J. Anderson, M. Baker, C. Baughn, E. Bentley, M. Bolton, A. Bowman, S. Brand, H. Breazeale, T. Brown, C. Butler,  L. Byrd, A. A. Campbell, A. Calvert Campbell, K. Cheshire, D. Copeland, L. Dailey, A. Davis,  S. Davis, W. Davis,  N. Dixon,  J. Ferry, A. Gilligan, M. Guy, C. Haboush, S. Harlan, S. Harris, H. Horton, P. Huffman,  D. Hutto, C. Jackson, B. Johnson, P. Johnson,  L. Jones, K. Jordan,  M. Korn, B. Lang, A. Lewis, S. Lewis, J. Lollar, C. Lynch,  C. McCarter,  K. McMurtrey, T. Meyer, K. Miller, S. Montgomery, E. Moore, L. Moore, J. A. Otts, K. Pancione, T. Platt, W. Powell, D. Reed, S. Rudolf, S. Scott, T. Sikes-Doggett, K. Stauter, W. Stuart, T. Sturm, R. Thomas,  C. Thompson-Ferrell, M. Thread, A. Townsend, N. Turnham, C. Williamitis, B. Woodmansee, A. Younce
Research Assistant Professors Candice Selwyn
Senior Instructors J. Cockrell, M. Meyer
Instructors K. Cooper, L. Emley, A. Holley, S. James, R. Johnson, ,J. Ladnier,  B. Mosley, K. Norris, C. Pierce, K. Sherpe, C. Taylor,  B. Urquhart, S. Waweru, E. Woods
Department Chair, Adult Health Nursing Theresa Wright
Department Chair, Community/Mental Health Nursing Todd Harlan
Department Chair, Maternal/Child Health Nursing Tricia Huey
Director, Academic Advising Mary Phillips
Academic Advisors Jennifer Bouvier,  Kristen Dykes, Katelyn Foster, Leigh Holland, Camry McCants, Brenda Mosley,  Kristyn Seawell, Bailey Smith, Suzan Williams
Academic Records Specialists Lisa Brock, Vickie Perkins
Clinical Placement Advising and Assessment Coordinator Kimberly McLean-Mundy
Clinical Affiliation Coordinators Elizabeth Collier, Shari Lord, Yolanda Mack

College of Nursing website

The College of Nursing is dedicated to the education of professional nurses who provide the highest quality health care to the communities they serve. The practice of nursing is both an art and a science; the focus of nursing is the diagnosis and treatment of human responses to actual or potential health problems.

The College of Nursing has two locations, one is on the USA main campus, and the other is on the USA Baldwin County campus in downtown Fairhope. The resources of the University, the USA Hospitals and clinics, and the numerous clinical agencies provide excellent opportunities for students to acquire the knowledge and skills essential for professional nursing.


The mission of the College of Nursing is to provide quality innovative educational programs to a diverse student body, to participate in research and scholarly activities, and to provide service to the University, the profession, and the public. The College accomplishes this by providing a caring, engaging environment for the empowerment of student learning potential, the professional development of faculty, and the promotion of the nursing profession.


  1. Cultivate a caring, innovative, and engaging environment to facilitate teaching, learning, scholarship, and service.
  2. Deliver innovative quality nursing programs that meet the needs of a diverse student body and other communities of interest.
  3. Promote the discovery, communication, and preservation of knowledge through scholarly activities and leadership.
  4. Provide service to the University, the profession, and the public.
  5. Develop community partnerships to promote nursing and the enhancement of the health care delivery system using interprofessional approaches.


The baccalaureate program is approved by the Alabama Board of Nursing and the baccalaureate, master's program in nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice degree program and post-graduate APRN certificate programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education:

655 K Street, NW, Suite 750
Washington, DC

P: (202) 887-6791
F: (202) 887-8476 

Student Responsibility

While the University of South Alabama will endeavor to provide timely and accurate advisement, it is the responsibility of the student to know and satisfy the degree requirements of the academic program, to be aware of the University calendar, and to understand and comply with University academic policies and procedures.

Degrees Offered

The College of Nursing offers the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree, the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree, and the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.

Certificates Offered

Post-Graduate Certificates are awarded to students completing planned programs of study in a nursing specialty area and subspecialty areas.