Spring 2020 Graduate and Professional Studies Catalog 
    Dec 08, 2022  
Spring 2020 Graduate and Professional Studies Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice

Program Learning Outcomes

Candidates who complete the Doctor of Nursing Practice program will be able to:

  • Inquire Faithfully: The graduate will demonstrate knowledge, skill and behavior of the evidence based practice of nursing which integrates growth in reasoning, analysis, decision-making, and the application of theory with the goal of advocating for others and/or self. This includes holistic nursing skills and the nursing process.
  • Care Faithfully: The graduate will embrace a calling to the ministry of compassionate care for all people in response to God’s grace, which aims to foster optimal health and bring comfort in suffering and death.
  • Communicate Faithfully: The graduate will actively engage in the dynamic interactive process that is intrapersonal and interpersonal with the goal of advocating for others and/or self. This includes effective, culturally appropriate communication conveys information, thoughts, actions and feelings through the use of verbal and nonverbal skills.
  • Follow Faithfully: Defined as claiming the challenge from Florence Nightingale that nursing is a “divine imposed duty of ordinary work”. The graduate will integrate the ordinary work by complying with and adhering to regulatory and professional standards (e.g. ANA Code of Ethics, the California Board of Registered Nursing Scope of Nursing Practice, SON Handbook). This includes taking responsibility, being accountable for all actions and treating others with dignity.
  • Lead Faithfully: The graduate will incorporate a foundational relationship with Christ and others and embrace a willingness to serve others in the midst of life circumstances (e.g. illness, injustice, poverty). The graduate will role-model the need for “Sabbath Rest” as a means of personal renewal, and true care of self, so that service to others is optimally achieved. The graduate will incorporate the characteristics of a servant leader including: humility, courage, forgiveness, discernment.


Program Eligibility for Doctor of Nursing Practice

Admission to the program is based on an overall appraisal of the applicant’s ability to undertake doctoral study and their contributions to the discipline of nursing as evidenced by the following:

  • Documentation of active RN license,
  • Official transcripts,
  • Minimum grade point average of 3.200 (MSN),
  • Curriculum Vitae or Resume,
  • Current employment in nursing or at least 1 year of full time nursing practice in the last 5 years,
  • Three (3) professional letters of recommendation,
  • A typed statement identifying a change of practice issue related to professional goals,
  • Example of scholarly work (e.g. work related presentation or project, paper from prior educational endeavors, professional presentation: published document, power point or poster), and
  • A completed application form and fee.


English Language Requirements

A satisfactory command of the English language is required for admission to the Graduate School of Nursing. All applicants whose native language is not English, must meet this requirement-including international applicants, permanent residents, immigrants, and transfer students who are not citizens of the United States on the date of admission. A Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is the measure of competency. The test must have been taken within the past two years with minimum scores of:

  • 550 for the paper-based test, and
  • 80 for the internet-based test with a minimum section requirement score of 20 in reading, listening, speaking, and writing. Only the following countries are exempt from proof of English proficiency: Australia, Canada, Ireland, United Kingdom, and New Zealand.

Other Provisions

To satisfy the requirement of the university’s clinical agencies, upon acceptance into the program students are required to provide copies of the following documentation:

  • Current licensure as a registered nurse;
  • Current Healthcare Provider CPR certificate from the American Heart Association;
  • Completed School of Nursing Health Form Packet with officially documented proof of immunizations;
  • Current TB screening upon admission into the program (2 step process);
  • Current HIPAA certificate;
  • Infection Control Module; and
  • Background check and drug screening (failure to pass this may result in an inability to complete the program).

Per agreement with the San Diego Nursing Service Education consortium and affiliated hospitals, a background check and drug screening is required prior to the student’s first clinical experience. If a red flag occurs from either the background check or drug screening, this may result in immediate dismissal from the program.

Graduation Requirements

In order to earn and receive the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, in addition to successful completion of all didactic course work, the student must satisfy all of the following:

  • Complete a total of 1,000 hours of clinical residency (documented clinical hours achieved in an DNP advance practice role will be included);
  • Implement and defend a DNP Project-examples of this include: Quality Improvement project at the unit or organization level;
  • A minimum grade point average of 3.000;
  • A minimum grade of B- in all courses; (Students needing to repeat more than one course may not progress and may be dismissed from the program)
  • Deliver a professional presentation of DNP Project in a community forum;
  • Submission of a manuscript for publication in a peer-reviewed journal;
  • All requirements for graduate degrees must be completed within an eight-year period from the time of initial enrollment in the program; and
  • Payment in full of all tuition, fees, and other financial obligations owed to the university, including a graduation fee.

DNP total units: 40-42

Academic Performance

Satisfactory Academic Performance

Satisfactory academic performance is defined as meeting all of the following:

  • letter grade of “B-” (81%) or higher in all required theory and elective courses.
  • grade of “Credit” in all clinical residency courses.
  • minimum GPA of 3.000 on a 4.000 scale in all required courses.

Repeatability and Academic Status Progression

Satisfactory completion of all courses is required in the DNP program of study.

Students must repeat any course in which they fail to receive a minimum grade of “B-” or “Credit.” If a course must be repeated, the following requirements will apply:

  • A required theory or elective DNP course may be repeated only once.
  • No more than two total required theory or elective DNP courses may be repeated.
  • Student may not continue with any academic or clinical coursework until notified by the Program Director of their status in the School of Nursing.

Students should refer to the Graduate and Professional Studies Handbook for academic status progression policy (e.g., probation and dismissal).

Academic Honesty

In matters related to integrity, such as those listed below, students may be placed on probation by the SON graduate faculty or be recommended to the Vice Provost for Academic Administration for dismissal from the program:

  • inappropriate clinical judgment (e.g. SON policy violation, HIPAA violations);
  • violation of Academic Honesty ;
  • other situations that compromise the PLNU University Student Conduct policy (refer to the Graduate and Professional Studies Student Handbook) or the School of Nursing Values and policies (refer to the School of Nursing Graduate Student Handbook), such as the ANA Code of Ethics CA Nurse Practice Act.