Program of Study



Program of Study

St. Catherine University's post-master's DNP is a rigorous, relevant and challenging 30-credit graduate program. The program includes coursework in ethical leadership, interprofessional collaboration to improve population health, knowledge of the discipline of nursing, informatics, evidence-based practice, organizational systems, healthcare economics and health policy. 

St. Kate's DNP nurses: Ready for change

Our DNP program prepares nurses — women and men — to be clinicians, educators and leaders who influence change in healthcare systems and communities. Each student undertakes a systems change project that brings together faculty and community advisors and mentors who are experts in their fields and committed to your growth as a scholar, leader and professional.

Driven by St. Kate's mission-based focus on social justice and leadership, our DNP nurses are prepared to improve health outcomes through evidence-based practice, applications of healthcare economics and informatics, and facilitation of changes in policy. Graduates are prepared to make a difference in a rapidly changing healthcare environment.

Collaboration, support and mentoring

Learning the St. Kate's DNP is a community experience, with the shared learning, collaborative spirit and personal support of the cohort learning model — you'll enter and proceed through the program with the same group of fellow nurses. Throughout, you and other members of your cohort will be mentored and coached by experiences nursing faculty mentors.  

Practicum experiences

You'll also complete a total of 1000 hours of practica, some of which may be accounted for from your nursing master's, as recommended by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. The St. Catherine University DNP course of study has been carefully designed to meet the AACN's Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice. Strong faculty-and-mentor partnerships create powerful links between your coursework, professional interests and academic goals during practicum experiences. These experiences will help you work toward your systems change project goals, explore theories of interest, expand you knowledge and skill sets, and bring classroom learning to life.

Finish in 24-27 months through weekend/online study

Start the St. Kate's DNP in September, and complete the St. Kate's DNP in 24-27 months. For details on the online/face-to-face learning format and course and practica scheduling, see our "hybrid" learning format page.

The DNP program of study

Courses for the Doctor of Nursing Practice are listed below. For full descriptions of these courses, see our online graduate catalog — click on the "DNP" section on this page.

Year 1

Fall Semester

  • NURS 8500: Underpinnings of the Discipline of Nursing (4 credits)
  • NURS 8515: Outcome Evaluation (1 credit)
  • NURS 8501: Practicum (1 credit)*

January Term

  • NURS 6005: Introduction to Epidemiology (1 credit)**
  • NURS 6012: Topics: Basic Graduate Nursing Informatics (2 credits)**

Spring Semester

  • NURS 8520: Advanced Evidence-Based Practice (4 credits)
  • NURS 8525: Advanced Informatics (2 credits)
  • NURS 8502: Practicum (1 credit) *

Year 2

Fall Semester

  • NURS 8535: Leadership in Organizations and Systems: Implications for Practice (3 credits)
  • NURS 8536: Health Care Economics and Finance (3 credits)
  • NURS 8503: Practicum (1 credit)*

January Term

  • NURS 8504: Practicum (1 credit)

Spring Semester

  • NURS 8540: Health Care: Power and Politics (4 credits)
  • NURS 8505: Practicum (1 credit)

*NURS 8501-8503 Practicum courses must be completed before enrollment in the Systems Change Project (SCP) credits.

**NURS 6005: Introduction to Epidemiology and NURS 6012: Basic Graduate Nursing Informatics are master’s level courses and taken only if not completed at the graduate level prior to beginning DNP coursework.

System Change Project Credit

  • NURS 8600: Systems Change Project (4 credits) ***


  • NURS 8610:Systems Change Project: Part One (2 credits)
  • NURS 8620: Systems Change Project: Part Two (2 credits)


  • NURS 8601: Systems Change Project: Part One (1 credit)
  • NURS 8602: Systems Change Project: Part Two (1 credit)
  • NURS 8603: Systems Change Project: Part Three (1 credit)
  • NURS 8604: Systems Change Project: Part Four (1 credit)

Systems Change Project Credits may be taken in the second year; however, last SCP credit cannot be taken before Year 2-Spring semester.