UW–Madison School of Nursing Best in Wisconsin for DNP Degree

The University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Nursing is again one of U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Graduate Schools.” The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree ranked first among all Wisconsin DNP programs and 28th out of 552 overall in the 2019 edition of the popular higher education program list.

“This recognition validates the quality of a UW–Madison degree, particularly our DNP degree, in preparing nurses for advanced practice and healthcare leadership,” says Dr. Linda D. Scott, School of Nursing dean. “It also gives us the opportunity to recognize our outstanding faculty, staff, and students who comprise our stellar doctoral program. We have a strong, committed learning community, and this ranking reflects the caliber and dedication of everyone involved.”


UW–Madison DNP students can pursue the degree over three or five years. Both plans are built around a cohort model for increased peer support and the establishment of professional colleagues after graduation. The rigorous curriculum includes traditional classroom courses, online learning, clinical placements, and a capstone scholarly project that synthesizes coursework with practice and prepares students to identify opportunities for quality improvement and to implement sustainable change. Students can currently choose from several specialty tracks to prepare for specific career goals, and other tracks are in development to meet evolving and emerging needs within the nursing profession.


“The DNP degree was borne of the recognition that nurses—particularly advanced practice nurses—already play a significant leadership role in care delivery and in the coordination of interdisciplinary teams. The DNP helps legitimize that role and offers nurses the opportunity to change practice itself and improve outcomes,” says Dr. Pam McGranahan, DNP program director.


“Our students definitely come to us hungry for the opportunity to do more—more for patients, more for health systems, and more for entire populations. They are high achievers who are used to success, and yet we still challenge them to think harder, work more strategically, and grow as clinicians and leaders,” says McGranahan. “We ask a lot of our students, and they ask a lot of us. It all pays off in the end. I see what our graduates accomplish in practice, and it is nothing short of remarkable.”


Applications for the 2019 DNP class open in September. Visit https://nursing.wisc.edu/graduate-programs/dnp/ for more information.