Nursing: Clinical Nurse Leader - Online (D.N.P.)

Nursing: Clinical Nurse Leader - Online (D.N.P.)
nurse leader

Prepare for the highest level of specialized nursing practice, where you will translate evidence into practice, improve systems of care and measure health outcomes in diverse settings. Graduate uniquely qualified to collaborate with leaders in healthcare to improve the quality of care.

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Why Get a DNP as a Clinical Nurse Leader?

UNH’s online Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Nurse Leader Doctor of Nursing Practice (PB CNL DNP) program prepares nurses for the highest level of specialized nursing practice. Graduates are innovative leaders prepared to translate evidence into practice, improve systems of care and measure health outcomes in diverse settings. Graduates are uniquely qualified to collaborate with leaders in healthcare to improve the quality of care.

Why Choose UNH's Clinical Nurse Leader DNP Program?

Benefit from UNH’s long history of leadership in the classroom and in the field of nursing. This unique program is geared towards the student who wants to specialize in quality improvement by achieving a terminal degree in nursing. Graduates are eligible for CNL certification, which addresses three areas:

  • Nursing leadership with a focus on health care advocacy
  • Clinical outcomes management with attention to benchmarks and quality metrics
  • Care environment management to ensure that where they receive care is optimized through continual quality improvement

Potential Careers

  • Director of Quality Improvement
  • Chief of Quality Management
  • Quality Management Specialist
  • Chief executive officer
  • Chief nursing officer
  • Clinical nurse manager
  • Director of nursing
  • Director of outpatient services
  • Director of quality &safety
  • Healthcare innovation officer
  • Nursing Faculty
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Curriculum & Requirements

The online Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Nurse Leader Doctor of Nursing Practice (PB CNL DNP) program prepares nurses for the highest level of specialized nursing practice. Students are prepared for innovative leadership where they will translate evidence into practice, improve systems of care and measure health outcomes in diverse settings. Students are required to plan, implement, and evaluate a quality improvement project customized to support their unique aspirations.

This Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Nurse Leader DNP program is for nurses with a baccalaureate degree in nursing who are seeking leadership development and certification as a Clinical Nurse Leader with a doctoral degree.

Graduates are uniquely qualified to collaborate with leaders in healthcare to improve the quality of care. Graduates attain eligibility for CNL certification through the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Clinical Nurse Leader certification examination.

Degree Requirements

Clinical Hours: 500*

Required Courses
NURS 812Advanced Pharmacology and Therapeutics3
NURS 814Advanced Health Assessment Across the Lifespan3
NURS 816Health Promotion Theory and Population Health3
NURS 818Foundations of Evidence Based Practice3
NURS 820Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan3
NURS #900Foundations of Scholarly Writing & Professional Communication3
NURS 910Genomics & Ethics3
NURS 915Leadership, Role & Collaboration3
NURS 917Biostats and Epidemiology3
NURS 926Clinical Nursing Leadership Scholarly Project I3
NURS 927Clinical Nursing Leadership Scholarly Project II3
NURS 928Clinical Nursing Leadership Scholarly Project III3
NURS 933Applied Analytics for QI in Health Care3
NURS 943Fundamentals of Quality Improvement & Safety in Healthcare3
NURS 964Information Systems and Technology Improvement3
NURS 967Evidence Based Practice Methods3
NURS 969Health Systems Policy, Economics & Financial Planning3
NURS 973Quality & Safety3
NURS 980Doctoral Scholarly Project I3
NURS 981Doctoral Scholarly Project II3
NURS 982Doctoral Scholarly Project III3
Total Credits63
*

Clinical hours are completed through the following required courses: NURS 926, NURS 927, NURS 928.

The Post-Baccalaureate Clinical Nurse Leader DNP student builds upon the skills of the baccalaureate prepared generalist nurse.

At the completion of the Clinical Nurse Leader component of the program, the graduate student is prepared to:

  • Serve in a healthcare leadership and change agent role as part of a diverse, complex, and patient-centered health care system.
  • Act as a practice scholar to design, direct and evaluate system changes to promote safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable and patient-centered care.
  • Use data analytic methods, information systems and technology to evaluate, integrate and apply knowledge that will improve programs of care, outcomes of care and care systems.
  • Use translational science and analytic methods to develop, identify, implement, and evaluate best practices to improve health care and health care systems.
  • Design and implement health promotion and clinical prevention strategies across the health/illness continuum to optimize health and disease management.
  • Systematically use improvement methods to monitor and evaluate care processes and outcomes and applies data for continuous improvement and safety
  • Advocate for social justice through policy, professional and political engagement.
  • Applies leadership principles that support inter-professional practice.
  • Act as lateral integrator to design, direct, and evaluate system changes to promote safe, timely, efficient, effective, equitable, patient centered care.

Upon completion of the Doctorate of Nursing Practice component, the graduate student is expected to:

  • Employ strategic leadership skills to shape practice environments to produce positive, patient centered, healthcare outcomes at individual and system levels.
  • Serve in a healthcare leadership and change agent role as part of a diverse, complex, and patient-centered health care system.
  • Act as a practice scholar to design, direct and evaluate system changes to promote safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable and patient-centered care.
  • Use data analytic methods, information systems and technology to evaluate, integrate and apply knowledge that will improve programs of care, outcomes of care and care systems.
  • Use translational science and analytic methods to develop, identify, implement, and evaluate best practices to improve health care and health care systems.
  • Design and implement health promotion and clinical prevention strategies across the health/illness continuum to optimize health and disease management.
  • Systematically use improvement methods to monitor and evaluate care processes and outcomes and applies data for continuous improvement and safety
  • Advocate for social justice through policy, professional and political engagement.
  • Applies leadership principles that support inter-professional practice.
  • Facilitate interprofessional collaboration to implement practice models, peer review, practice guidelines, health policy, and standards of care.

Apply now

Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: April 1
  • Spring: Nov. 1
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Online

New England Regional: No

Accelerated Masters Eligible: No

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence Form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.

Transcripts

If you attended UNH or Granite State College (GSC) after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester, UNH Non-Degree work and GSC. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must upload a copy (PDF) of your transcript in the application form. International transcripts must be translated into English.

If admitted, you must then request an official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to grad.school@unh.edu. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Transcripts from all previous post-secondary institutions must be submitted and applicants must disclose any previous academic or disciplinary sanctions that resulted in their temporary or permanent separation from a previous post-secondary institution. If it is found that previous academic or disciplinary separations were not disclosed, applicants may face denial and admitted students may face dismissal from their academic program.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

References should be substantial with one academic, if available, and two current nursing professionals with graduate education background.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

Prepare a brief but careful statement regarding:

  1. Reasons you wish to do graduate work in this field, including your immediate and long-range objectives.
  2. Your specific research or professional interest and experiences in this field.

Additional Department Requirements

Applicants are required to have an unencumbered RN license in the United States, degree in nursing or outside nursing, and successful completion of undergraduate statistics and research to be eligible to apply to this program. 

Non-BSN Admission Requirements:
RNs whose baccalaureate degree is in a discipline other than nursing may apply to the master of science degree in nursing (M.S.) program and will be considered for the track that is commensurate with their clinical experience based on faculty discretion.

  1. Unencumbered, active RN license in the United States
  2. Baccalaureate degree in another field
  3. Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in associate and baccalaureate programs
  4. Nursing experience preferred but not required
  5. Successful completion of undergraduate statistics course and undergraduate research course
  6. Interview may be requested

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program-specific application questions.

International Applicants

Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.