A nursing student using a stethoscope

Post BSN to DNP

Earn both the Master of Science (MS) in nursing degree in an advance practice role (Family Nurse Practitioner or Neonatal Nurse Practitioner focus) and the highest clinical nursing degree, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in one program.
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Post BSN to DNP

Degree Overview

Are you a nurse looking to maximize your career potential and make a powerful and meaningful impact as a nurse practitioner? Regis University’s Loretto Heights School of Nursing offers Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) prepared RN’s the option to earn both the Master of Science (MS) in nursing degree in an advance practice role (Family Nurse Practitioner or Neonatal Nurse Practitioner focus) and the highest clinical nursing degree, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in one program.

Why both master’s and doctorate in one program? The increasing complexity of patient care, the volume of knowledge available today, and the very important need for the profession of nursing to help guide the future of health care policy and practice means that it’s critical for nurses to advance beyond the master’s level. This is an important time for health care policy in this country, and an important time for the profession of nursing. Your DNP will prepare you to elevate nursing to the next level and make a meaningful and positive impact. Be at the forefront of emerging roles, and complete population focused applied research with your selected patient population as part of the DNP program.

In the post BSN to DNP program, you will select either the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) or the Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (NNP) focus. In the first two years of the program you will learn the advanced practice role of the population selected. These courses are taught through classroom instruction on our Denver campus either every-other-weekend for FNP, or one day a week for NNP. The campus courses allow for face-to-face learning of the important clinical skills needed for advanced practice nursing. Clinical hours are completed on a variable weekday schedule throughout the Denver area including urban and rural sites. Once you complete the first two years you will earn your Master of Science (MS) degree in Nursing and are eligible to sit for the corresponding certification exam.

The final two years of the program are offered entirely online with no campus visit required allowing you to work as a nurse practitioner while you earn your DNP. As a DNP graduate, you are prepared at the highest level of evidence-based practice. Graduates provide primary or acute health care to individuals and populations while providing leadership and innovation to their practice as a doctorally-prepared Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN).


Graduates are awarded a Master of Science, Nursing degree upon completion of the MS portion of the program with a focus as either a Family Nurse Practitioner or Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, and the Doctor of Nursing Practice.

Deadline and Start Date

Applications are currently being accepted for the group starting in May 2014. A new group of FNP students starts each May. A new group of NNP students starts in May every-other-year (odd years) only.

Length of Program

Four year program which includes completion of a Master of Science in Nursing degree (FNP or NNP) after two years, and DNP after completion of all four years. Students may opt to complete only the MS portion, but are encouraged to complete the full four year program.

Program Requirements

Listed below are the required courses for completion of this degree at Regis University. Please note that recent course requirement updates may not be reflected in the list below and you should contact the Office of Enrollment Services at 303.458.4126 for recent changes and updates.

This degree program requires 74 semester hours (NNP Focus) or 79 semester hours (FNP) focus for completion.

Post BSN to DNP Advanced Practice Core Requirements

NR 600 Theoretical Framworks for Leadership and Adv. Practice (3)

Examines the historical and philosophical context of knowledge development in nursing in order to provide a sense of professional heritage and identity for emerging nurse leaders. Theories from nursing, related sciences, and leadership are critiqued and evaluated for their usefulness and applicability to nursing roles in practice, research, education, and management. Students examine their own leadership competency in relation to contemporary health care issues and the health care environment. Service learning and its relationship to the Regis mission of Ignatian philosophy, social justice, and leadership in service to others is integrated to promote delivery of advanced nursing care to diverse populations. Prerequisite(s): Admission to the Master of Science degree in nursing program or permission of the Program Director.

NR 602 Adv. Application of Research for Evidence-Based Practice (3)

Designed to enable the student to translate research in building an evidence-based nursing practice for improving health outcomes for populations. Various quantitative and qualitative research designs, methods, and analytical procedures such as clinical practice guidelines, systematic reviews, meta-analysis reports and others are presented, compared, and critiqued. Methodologies used in nursing to generate evidence and the approaches to implementation of evidence-based practice models in education, administration, and practice settings are examined. Ethical and cultural dimensions associated with the research process are appraised to insure protection of human subjects. Prerequisite(s): NR 600.

HCE 604 Health Care Ethics (3)

Examines ethical and moral reasoning relevant to professional nursing practice and health care delivery in today's society. Explores philosophical and faith-based foundations, including Catholic moral tradition, socio-cultural influences, professional codes, organizational and personal ethical norms. Ethical issues are examined with emphasis on advanced practice nursing, leadership roles and models of health care delivery. Introduces skills in analyzing ethical dilemmas and evaluating ethical practice using ethical theory, moral argument, and case studies. NOTE: This course was previously titled Ethics and Society. Cross listing(s): NR 690E NR 604

NR 605 Adv. Physiology and Patho and Across the Lifespan (3)

Building on basic anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology, this graduate level science-based course utilizes a comprehensive approach to address the underlying principles of disease processes across the life span. Etiology, epidemiology, and theories related to pathogenesis are examined. The focus is on the differentiation of physiological and pathophysiological findings and identification of treatment modalities for a variety of frequently presenting problems of clients in primary care across the lifespan. Prerequisite(s): Admission to the Master of Science degree in nursing program or permission of the Program Director.

NR 607F Advanced Pharmacology for Advanced Practice (3)

Prepares advanced practice registered nursing (APRN ) and MS in Nursing Leadership in Health Care Systems students for drug therapy management, across the life span, in a variety of primary care settings. The student will learn mechanisms of action, indications for use, efficacy, adverse effects, monitoring parameters, dosing principles and drug interactions for common drug classes used in primary care. Identification and selection of appropriate drug management regimens for selected disease states will be addressed. Students will develop safe prescribing techniques using evidence-based pharmacotherapeutics and standards of practice. Prerequisite(s): Admission to the Master of Science degree in nursing program or permission of the Program Director.

NR 608 Health Care Policy and Issues in Practice (3)

Focuses on health policy formation and evaluation. Learning activities will facilitate students´ opportunities to learn about change in the context of public policy and politics. Public health care policy will be examined with emphasis on its relationship and application to advanced practice nursing, leadership roles in management and education, and models of health care delivery. Topics include history, trends, and issues in health care systems; legal issues; legislation and regulation; funding, planning, delivery, and evaluation of health care services to individuals and populations; and accessibility, quality and outcome issues. Advocacy as part of service learning will be explored. Prerequisite(s): NR 600 or permission of the Program Director. Cross listing: HCA 408 and HSA 608.

NR 614 Foundations of Financial Management for Nursing Leaders (3)

Prepares students to apply essentials of financial management to nursing leadership roles in health care systems. An overview of health care economics, financial concepts, and budgeting in health care organizations is presented. The use of financial information and economic principles including cost/benefit analysis for strategic planning, decision-making, and the development of a business plan are addressed. Prerequisite(s): NR 600 and graduate standing or permission from Program Director.

Family Nurse Practitioner Focus

NR 630 Advanced Health Assessment of the Family (3)

Provides a framework for systematic data collection, organization, precise recording, accurate physical and psychosocial assessment, and communication of data reflecting the health status of the patient and family. A holistic perspective facilitates an analysis of cultural, occupational, and environmental factors integral to an understanding of both the patient and family’s physical and psychosocial wellbeing. The course provides the student an opportunity to develop advanced skills necessary to evaluate deviation from the normal assessment. The student will also practice advanced physical assessment skills in simulated clinical settings. Prerequisite(s): Graduate standing or permission of Program Director. Fee required.

NR 649 Primary Care Procedures (1)

A theory, application, and skills course addressing the assessment and management of urgent patient conditions commonly encountered in primary care settings. Prerequisite: NR*607 NR*630 AND NR*643

NR 663 Primary Health Care of Adults and Older Adult I (5)

Addresses health maintenance, disease prevention, and health promotion for adults from young adulthood through geriatric age. Emphasizes skills in assessment, diagnosis, treatment, management, education and follow up of health maintenance exams, minor acute illness, and minor acute injury. NOTE: 105 clinical hours of preceptored experience are required. Pre-requisite: NR*605 NR*607 NR*630

NR 664 Primary Health Care of Adults and Older Adult II (3)

Addresses health maintenance, disease prevention, and health promotion for adults from young adulthood through geriatric age. Emphasizes skills in assessment, diagnosis, treatment, management, education and follow up of complex and chronic illness. NOTE: 105 clinical hours of preceptored experience are required. Prerequisite: NR*663

NR 642 Primary Health Care of Children and Their Families (5)

Addresses well child care, and health maintenance and promotion for children from birth through adolescence. Develops skills in assessment and management of minor acute illness, chronic illness and injuries. NOTE: 105 clinical hours required. Prerequisite: NR*644

NR 645 Clinical Integration Practicum (5)

Integrates advanced family nurse practitioner theory and practice. Students examine and evaluate outcomes of nursing therapeutics and collaborative management strategies in specific primary care situations. Students discuss and defend clinical data assessment and decision making. Liability insurance fee required. NOTE: 315 clinical hours required. Current Regis University liability insurance is required. Prerequisite: TAKE NR*642 NR*663 NR*664;

NR 651 Professional Integration (3)

Integrates core concepts in nursing for the nurse practitioner. Builds on the skill set essential for independent practice. Prerequisite: NR*601 NR*602 NR*604 NR*608 NR*640

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Focus

NR 653 Genetics and Embryology for Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (3)

Provides a scientific foundation in embryology and genetics for practice. Analyzes the principles of human genetics, genetic testing and screening, genetic abnormalities and gene therapy for implications for the neonatal nurse practitioner.

NR 652 Health Assessment for the Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (4)

Presents a framework for systematic collection of a comprehensive database that includes pertinent history and physical assessments of the pregnant woman, neonate, and healthy child through age two.

NR 654 Advanced Practice Procedures for the High Risk Infant(2)

A theory, application, and skills course addressing the assessment and management of neonatal procedures commonly encountered in neonatal intensive care facilities. NOTE: Laboratory practicum includes procedural techniques. Prerequisite: NR*605 NR*607 NR*652

NR 656 Management of the High Risk Newborn (5)

Application of theory to practice in the development of a plan of care based on research evidence, pathophysiology, nursing and pharmacology principles, and protocols for the neonate. NOTE: Includes 105 hours of precepted clinical practice. Prerequisite: NR*605 NR*607 NR*652

NR 657 Clinical Integration for the Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (5)

Focuses on the integration of advanced perinatal and neonatal theory, skill competency, critical thinking and clinical management of the low and high risk neonate and family. NOTE: Includes 415 hours of precepted clinical practice. Prerequisite: TAKE NR*605N NR*607N NR*652 NR*653 NR*654 NR*656;

NR 651 Professional Integration (3)

Integrates core concepts in nursing for the nurse practitioner. Builds on the skill set essential for independent practice. Prerequisite: NR*601 NR*602 NR*604 NR*608 NR*640

Doctor of Nursing Practice Requirements

NR 701 Theoretical Application for the Doctoral Nursing Practice(3)

Facilitates development and evaluation of new practice and delivery approaches based on theories from various disciplines of study. Students examine, critique, and develop theoretical frameworks that direct health care delivery to improve the health of individuals, aggregates, and communities. Reflecting on the complexity of health care, students develop ethical and evidence-based approaches for the application of natural and social sciences to communities of interest. The course also integrates the concepts of population health and equity of care delivery for vulnerable, underserved, and diverse populations. Note: DNP students only.

NR 702 Applied Statistics (3)

Develops skills and knowledge to manage and analyze biomedical data. Statistics used for decision-making, population health assessment, and inferential research analysis are applied to describe the health of populations, quality assurance initiatives, appraisals of effectiveness of interventions, and predicting risk in urban or rural, geographic or population-based, vulnerable or underserved populations. Note: DNP students only.

NR 703 Informatics (3)

Provides knowledge and skills for nurse leaders to analyze, evaluate, and utilize health care information systems for the delivery of patient care. Students examine clinical, administrative, patient education, and evidence-based practice informatics applications, ethical and legal issues, and the design and implementation of information systems in health care systems. Note: DNP students only. Cross Listing: NR 603.

NR 704 Epidemiology and Health Promotion for Populations (3)

Provides the epidemiological foundations for assessing and planning population health promotion and disease prevention. Emphasizes core concepts of epidemiology including epidemiology models, determinants of health and illness, epidemiological methods and data measurements and examining the epidemiology of populations across the lifespan. Students examine the role of the DNP in collaborating with community partners in using epidemiology study results for addressing gaps in care for vulnerable and underserved populations at local, state, national, and global levels. Note: DNP students only.

NR 707 Clinical Research for the Doctor of Nursing Practice (3)

As the costs of health care continue to rise, and society's ability to meet these costs declines, there is increasing interest in the efficacy, economic evaluation, and overall patient satisfaction with health care interventions across populations. This course provides background information on the theoretical foundations, implementation, and evaluation of outcomes research in evidence-based practice, and emphasizes the ongoing use of data to improve the processes, systems, and delivery of care to vulnerable, underserved, and diverse populations. Examines concepts related to utilization of outcome data in clinical decision-making at the programmatic and organizational level and develop an outcomes research project proposal. Note: DNP students only.

NR 708 Health Policy Analysis and Development (3)

Students critically analyze public policy and the implications of policy to consumers, professionals and policy makers. Financial and legal influences are discussed as students evaluate policy decisions and strategize ways to drive policy supportive of health care, health care delivery, health care education and the practice of nursing. Shows evidence of leadership in the development and implementation of health care policy within institutions and the public arena at all levels from local to international. Note: DNP students only.

NR 711 Advanced Leadership for Collaborative Models of Care (3)

Addresses advanced practice models for nurse practitioners, including scope of practice, standards of care, practice guidelines and credentialing. Collaborative models of health care and collaborative practice are presented and address issues related to access to care. Principles of leadership and management are presented and include advanced communication skills, ethical decision-making, office management, and insurance and billing. The role of the nurse practitioner as a member of health care delivery teams is presented with a focus on coalition building, human relations development, and workforce planning. Leadership skills emphasize creating change and negotiating conflict to provide health care to selected populations within collaborative care models. Evaluation strategies and outcomes served as a basis for determining quality of care. Note: DNP students only.

NR 712 Dynamics of Organizations, Systems Design, and Evaluation (3)

Analyzes the theoretical basis for organizations and the role and structure of organizations across the health care continuum both globally and within multiple contexts. Students examine quality and safety initiatives, relationships of structure, finance, function, design, and risk management from a systems model perspective. Further, students use ethical leadership concepts to analyze complex situations and environment to operationalize best practice standards in service to vulnerable, underserved, diverse populations. Note: DNP students only.

NR 715A-C Application to Practice Clinical Hours (1-7)

Students register for a variable number of credit hours based on faculty review of transcripts and degree plan requirements. These precepted experiences are designed to assist students apply theory to practice, identify theory to practice disjunctions, and complete a DNP Capstone Project in the student’s area of interest. Application to practice hours may be scheduled in conjunction with the student’s capstone project courses. Note: DNP students only.

NR 706A-C DNP Capstone Project (1-7)

The Capstone project will provide a demonstration of evidence based application of course and clinical experiences to meet University, School, and Program outcomes. The Capstone project will include a DNP practice change initiative. Students take Capstone Project A seminar early in the program to explore a variety of DNP roles and their DNP role in their practice setting. Students identify the vulnerable, underserved, or diverse populations with whom they are working, establish a practice problem and review the relevant literature in preparation for establishing their practice change initiative. The Capstone committees are established to guide the students in the practice projects. Pre- or co-requisite: Appropriate NR 715 or NR 725 courses. Note: DNP students only.

NR 799 Capstone Defense (0)

Required of all DNP students. Consists of an oral comprehensive presentation on core and specialty course content and evidence of achievement or program and University outcomes. Prerequisite(s):All DNP theory and Capstone Project courses in the emphasis, greater than 80% of all Application to Practice clinical hours, and approval of the appropriate director/coordinator. Note: DNP students only.


Regis University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.

Commission URL: http://www.ncahlc.org
Commission Phone: 312-263-0456

The Loretto Heights School of Nursing is accredited by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing - Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (AACN-CCNE). The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Master of Science (MS) programs are accredited through 2019. Additionally, effective October 2012, the DNP program is now fully accredited by AACN-CCNE.

If you would like more information on AACN-CCNE please go to: www.aacn.nche.edu/accreditation.

May 2014-April 2015

MS Tuition (per semester hour) $695
DNP Tuition (per semester hour) $825
Other Fees
Application Fee $75
Health Insurance* (waived with proof of other insurance)
   Summer (May 5, 2014-August 21, 2014)
   Fall Rate (August 22, 2014-December, 31 2014)
   Spring/Summer Rate (January 1, 2015-August 21, 2015)

Lab Fee (one time only) $300
Background Check and Drug Screen (external agency fee) $105
Graduation Application Fee $50

*Students who elect the University sponsored health insurance are enrolled for the entire year and cannot drop mid-year without a change of life exception. Only students who are enrolled in programs that require health insurance are eligible for the University sponsored plan.

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