Compare Doctoral Programs

A side-by-side comparison of our two doctoral programs: the PhD and the DNP.

wdt_ID Comparison Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
1 Program Objective Prepare the highest level of nursing practice scholars who will translate evidence into practice; terminal degree in practice Prepares scholars for research and academic careers in public or private sectors of health care; terminal degree in research
2 Career Focus Evaluate nursing scientific findings and apply them to clinical settings for improved health care outcomes.
Graduates are positioned to translate evidence into practice with diverse populations, inform health care policy, and implement and evaluate clinical programs.
Conduct and disseminate independent research and participate as interdisciplinary researchers to responds to regional, national, and international priorities.
Graduates advance the nursing discipline and practice through research, education, and health policy.
3 Course Focus • Expanding practice to highest level
• Theory related to practice
• Apply translational science methods to practice-
focused scholarship
• Health system/policy transformation
• Knowledge generation
• Theory construction and analytic
• Scientific quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
• Health policy development and advocacy
• Cognate areas of interest to guide research program development
4 Clinical Requirements Faculty supervised clinical practica hours in an advanced specialty (clinical or administrative) role None
5 Research Requirements Knowledge translation and implementation science Knowledge generation and nurse scientist skill development
6 Scholarly Project Practice Dissertation or Evidence-Based Project Research Dissertation or Research-Based Manuscripts
7 Types of Positions • Advanced Practice (e.g. Nurse Practitioner) in a variety of health settings
• Academic faculty roles with specialty practice emphasis
• Leadership positions in health care organizations, industry, policy, etc.
• Academic roles include research, education, and service roles
• Nurse scientist for health care organizations, industry, policy, etc.
• Leadership positions in health care organizations, industry, policy, etc.