Doctor of Nursing Practice: Post-Baccalaureate (BSN to DNP Pathway)

BSN-DNP class 300px

The BSN to DNP pathway is designed for nurses with a BSN or generalist MSN degree.

Application deadline: Nov. 1 for entry the following fall



 already started an application? log in here


Overview Admissions Classes Contact




  • A path for BSN graduates to complete MSN coursework and progress seamlessly to a DNP
  • Designed for nurses seeking educational preparation for national specialty certification and to earn their DNP
  • Small, intimate classes with world-class faculty
  • More than 1,000 clinical hours
  • The opportunity to complete a final scholarly project

Specialty Areas
The post-baccalaureate DNP pathway (BSN to DNP) has 6 distinct tracks available:

  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care CNS
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care NP
  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care CNS and NP
  • Family NP
  • Pediatric NP
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health NP

We are excited to offer the post-baccalaureate pathway to the DNP with specialty preparation in Family NP, Pediatric NP, and Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Please note that the final approval process for this pathway will be completed during the 2014-15 academic year.


To be considered for the post-baccalaureate DNP pathway, applicants must submit a completed application and:

  • Have a baccalaureate or master's degree in nursing from a nationally accredited school.
  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in undergraduate study.
  • Be licensed as a registered nurse in the US, with eligibility to transfer your license to Virginia.   All matriculating students who are not active-duty military nurses must have a Virginia RN license before the first day of classes.
  • Submit a total of three satisfactory recommendations (academic, professional, and clinical), one of which should be from an APRN.
  • Submit a copy of your resume or C.V.
  • Have completed an undergraduate or graduate statistics course within the past five years.
  • Be available for an interview, if requested.
  • International applicants have additional admissions requirements.

Note: Applicants should have at least two years of full-time RN experience before entering the program. 

Submission of GRE scores is optional. If you wish to submit your scores, UVA's Institutional Code is R-5820. The School of Nursing accepts GRE scores that are more than five years old (please submit a copy of the student report).

A competitive candidate for admission would have the following at the time of application:

  • BSN GPA of 3.5 or higher;
  • More than two years of relevant, full-time RN experience;
  • Active member of a national nursing organization (preferably in applicant’s practice area);
  • Exhibiting leadership behaviors in a nursing practice setting (mentoring other nurses, participating in unit or hospital-based leadership teams, engaged in practice change and evidence-based practice projects);
  • Possess a clinical certification, or on pathway to obtaining one or more certifications;
  • Excellent writing skills.


Candidates with generalist MSN degrees (CNL, nursing education, informatics, etc.) should apply to the BSN to DNP pathway. Enrolling students may petition to transfer up to 12 credits from their prior MSN degree to the DNP. 



Financial Aid
Students applying for or enrolled in either DNP or PhD programs may apply for the Virginia Doctoral Nursing Student Loan Assistance Repayment Program administered by UVA. Full-time doctoral students are eligible to borrow up to $25,000 per year during the coursework phase of their programs (years 1 and 2), loans that are cancelled if a teaching position at a public or private nursing program in Virginia for four years (two years of teaching for each year of loan) is assumed after graduation.

Additionally, DNP students are  eligible for other School of Nursing-specific aid (teaching assistantships, scholarships, nurse traineeship funds, and the Nurse Faculty Loan Program); Visit our tuition and financial aid website for more information.

Technology requirements

All graduate nursing students are required to have a laptop. Information about these requirements will be sent to enrolling students in the summer before classes begin.


The length of time requires to complete the program depends on several factors: whether you have a BSN or MSN degree; whether you are a full-time/part-time student; the number of practica hours required; and your final scholarly project. Full-time students with a BSN degree can complete the DNP pathway in 33 months; students in the combined Adult-Gerontology Acute Care CNS and NP can complete the program in 36 months. Part-time students should complete the program in 5-6 years. Students are encouraged to discuss concepts for the capstone project early in their study, and could incorporate elements of the project in their clinical preceptorship.

Plan of study


The American Academy of Colleges of Nursing mandates that all DNP graduates complete at least 1,000 hours of precepted clinical experiences in their specialty area. DNP faculty mentors help students create individualized clinical plans to meet their professional, specialty and geographic goals.

Clinical requirements do not need to be met at the UVA Medical Center; the School has existing clinical contracts across the Commonwealth and beyond and students may also ‘bring their own’ clinical sites from the area or outside of Virginia (those wishing to establish new practica sites must communicate their intentions to faculty mentors well in advance to meet the two to three months it takes to establish new contractual arrangements). Clinical/practicum activities are generally conducted within the Commonwealth of Virginia. Clinical/practice activities may be conducted in a different state as long as that state participates in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements. A list of participating states can be accessed at


  • Monthly DNP information sessions are available
  • Complete our online inquiry form to be added to the mailing list.
  • You are welcome to call the School of Nursing Office of Admissions and Student Services at (434) 924-2743 / (888) 283-8703.
  • DNP program director: Dorothy Tullmann, PhD, RN, CNL: 434-924-0131
  • Assistant DNP coordinator: Kathryn Reid, PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, CNL: 434 924-0115
  • Admissions and financial aid: contact the Office of Admissions & Student Services, (434) 924-2743 or (888) 283-8703


The DNP program at the UVA School of Nursing builds upon the Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice as ratified by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. The DNP is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington DC 20036, (202) 887-6791.