DNP Curriculum, Courses and Schedule – CCNE Accredited

About the DNP in Leadership Curriculum

Boise State’s CCNE accredited Doctor of Nursing Practice in Leadership offers an enriching curriculum to enhance a nurse leader’s knowledge, expertise and leadership skills.  Graduates are prepared to assess and transform practice environments, to lead change, and to enhance the quality of health care delivery systems in the context of the organizational culture and inter-professional collaboration.

Courses are offered online to maximize flexibility while four, on-campus Executive Sessions (two days each) provide the opportunity for valuable face-to-face interaction with peers, faculty, and staff.

Scholarly Projects

The centerpiece of the DNP in Leadership is the completion of a comprehensive Scholarly Project. From your first semester, you will work toward the completion of a final culminating project.  The project will allow you to showcase your expanding research and analytical skills, your growing expertise with health care policy, information and organizational systems and your ability to engage in inter-professional collaboration as a nurse leaders.

Scholarly Projects are developed with the assistance of a faculty advisor. Project proposals and results are presented in person during Executive Sessions on the Boise State campus. View examples of Scholarly Projects.

On Campus Executive Sessions

Each spring, DNP in Leadership students travel to the Boise State campus to attend Executive Sessions. Each session is 2-3 days in length. The first session includes an orientation to the program and provides students with the opportunity to interact with fellow students and faculty while discussing the parameters of the scholarly project.  Students return the following spring to present proposals for the Scholarly Project. Then, during the final semester, students deliver a formal presentation to the School of Nursing, sharing the results of the Scholarly Project.

Schedule and Course Descriptions

New cohorts of DNP in Leadership students begin each fall semester in a year-round, eight semester program. On average, students take 5-6 credits per semester including courses focused on developing and producing a cumulative scholarly project.

View courses by year and semester

Courses cover a wide array of leadership theories, policy and advocacy, population health, outcome management analysis, and technology, information systems and quality analysis.  Course work is designed to support the development of the scholarly project and includes four courses are dedicated to completing your culminating scholarly project.

YEAR 1 - Fall Semester
NURS 602 Advanced Principles of Population Health Nursing
NURS 616 Healthcare Technology, Information Systems, and Quality3
Spring Semester
Executive Session at Boise State (Orientation)
NURS 620 Scholarly Inquiry and Advanced Evidence Based Practice3
NURS 604 Designing Models of Health Care Delivery3
Summer Semester
NURS 601 Scholarly Project I 2
NURS 614 Outcomes Management Analysis3
YEAR 2 - Fall Semester
NURS 618 Quality Improvement and Evaluation Methodology3
NURS 622Financial Strategies for Nurse Leaders3
Spring Semester
Executive Session at Boise State (Proposal)
NURS 603Scholarly Project II2
NURS 610Leadership for Organizations, Systems, and Populations3
Summer Semester
NURS 605Scholarly Project III 2
YEAR 3 - Fall Semester
NURS 608 Health Care Policy and Advocacy3
NURS 609Health Care Policy & Advocacy Practicum 2
Spring Semester
Executive Session @ Boise State (Scholarly Project Presentation)
NURS 612Translation, Integration, and Dissemination of Evidence3
NURS 621Scholarly Project IV2

Course Descriptions

Course NumberCourse TitleCourse Description
NURS 601Scholarly Project I Assessment and identification of nursing practice issue focused on a population of interest that lays the groundwork for development of the culminating scholarly project while investigating the DNP role. This course includes at least 16 hours of formalized discussion with faculty adviser per semester.
NURS 602Advanced Principles of Population Health NursingAnalyzes impact of social, cultural, ecological, & systems of care delivery factors on health care disparities across population groups. Evaluates the DNP role in disease prevention and health promotion for populations, utilizing a social, justice framework; explores the impact of globalization on health care and health care planning, and the need to design health care systems that are responsive to diverse cultural needs.
NURS 603Scholarly Project IIImmersive practice experience with a population of interest that includes planning of the culminating scholarly project and examination of DNP role within a health care system. Includes at least 16 hours of formalized discussion with faculty adviser per semester. An oral proposal of the project must be approved by the supervisory committee to satisfactorily complete the course.
NURS 604 Designing Models of Health Care DeliverySynthesizes evidence, theories, and scientific principles to create new individual, aggregate, and population health care delivery models and approaches. Comprehensive program planning knowledge and analytical skills will be used to evaluate and ameliorate the interactions between complex practice, organization/system, population, policy, economic, and political issues affecting diverse populations and practice settings.
NURS 605Scholarly Project III Immersive practice experience with a population of interest that includes implementation of scholarly project and role of the DNP. Includes at least 16 hours of formalized discussion with faculty adviser per semester.
NURS 606Constructing Leadership for the DNPA comprehensive examination of leadership theories and styles, understanding of ethical, principled leadership skills, and an analysis and application of innovative leadership techniques and strategies. Uses reflection and leadership development strategies to actualize the DNP leadership role.
NURS 608Health Care Policy and AdvocacyPrepares students to analyze, influence, develop, and implement health related policies at all levels. Focused on principles and strategies to influence policymakers, lead stakeholder teams, and engage in advocacy efforts for health care consumer populations, providers, systems of care, and other stakeholders in policy and public forums.
NURS 609Health Care Policy & Advocacy PracticumProvides the student the opportunity to experience leadership and professional development alongside an experienced local, regional or national health care policy leader.
NURS 610Leadership for Organizations, Systems, and Populations Prepares the student for a leadership role in a complex health care system and refines leadership skills to assess and transform practice environments, to lead change, and to enhance the quality of health care delivery systems in the context of the organizational culture and inter-professional collaboration.
NURS 612Translation, Integration, and Dissemination of EvidenceAnalyzes and evaluates concepts associated with evidence-based nursing practice models. Translating evidence-based practice includes: evidence-based practice recommendations, practice change, evaluating outcomes, and diffusing innovation. Uses translational science to apply evidence to practice.
NURS 614 Outcomes Management AnalysisAnalysis of epidemiological, bio-statistical, environmental, and other data related to individual, aggregate, and population health. Emphasis on business and economic processes for analysis of cost effective health care outcomes.
NURS 616Health Care Technology, Information Systems, and QualityPrepares students to use evidence and advanced knowledge of technology to lead improvements in communication and the monitoring, collection, management, analysis, and dissemination of information that enhances health and health care safety and quality. Focused on design, selection, use, and evaluation of legal, ethical, just, and cost-effective information-management processes to evaluate health and practice outcomes in diverse, aggregate-focused, advanced practice settings.
NURS 618Quality Improvement and Evaluation MethodologyAppraises the study, understanding, and challenges of quality care measurement and improvement to assure high quality health care outcomes in practice, systems of care, organizations and communities, and populations. Uses evidence, research, and outcome information to improve nursing practice, care-delivery models, and health care systems.
NURS 620Scholarly Inquiry and Advanced Evidence-Based PracticeExamines foundational and philosophical aspects of nursing science related to the role of the DNP. Uses applied research methods and design of health care research and evidence-based practice related to advanced clinical scholarship to examine relevance to nursing and health care practice.
NURS 621Scholarly Project IVCulminating immersive practice experience with a population of interest that includes evaluation of the scholarly project, written report of completed work and appraisal of the role of the DNP. An approval of supervisory committee at end of course.
NURS 623Scholarly Clinical ExperienceCourse with variable credits for those students who do not have 500 clinical hours prior to entrance in the DNP program. Clinical experiences in leadership developed with the student to ensure completion of 1000 hours of clinical upon completion of DNP program.

Technology Requirements

Boise State University utilizes Blackboard Learn for online courses. Blackboard can be accessed online at  Review the minimum technology hardware/software system requirements.


DNP Essentials – Boise State adheres to the AACN’s call for graduates of DNP programs to develop and expand their knowledge and expertise in eight essential areas.

  1. Scientific underpinnings for practice
  2. Organizational and systems leadership
  3. Clinical scholarship and analytical methods for evidence-based practice
  4. Information systems and patient care technology
  5. Health care policy
  6. Inter-professional collaboration
  7. Clinical prevention
  8. Advanced nursing practice

View The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice (2006)


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