PhD in Nursing

PhD in Nursing

The Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing program is designed to prepare nurse scientists who will assume a variety of roles in education, research, leadership and health policy.  The holistic review process is used when considering applications for admission to the PhD Program in Nursing.

Meet some of our alumni.

phd students around a table

 

The goal of the program is to prepare nurse scientists to:

  • generate knowledge, test interventions and evaluate outcomes to reduce risks of illness/disability and promote quality of life.
  • collaborate with other disciplines to improve the delivery of health care.
  • assume research, leadership, executive, public policy and/or teaching roles.
  • affect health policy through the application of scientific knowledge.
See what students and alumni say about our program.

Tracks

Two progression tracks are offered in the program:

  • BSN to PhD: BSN to PhD students complete the first year of coursework at the master’s level and then continue on to doctoral level work.
  • MSN to PhD: The MSN to PhD students enter directly into doctoral coursework.

Plan of Study

The BSN-PhD and MSN-PhD programs are offered on-site. While the majority of courses are face-to-face, some cognate courses may be offered on line.  Most courses are offered in a traditional semester long format; however, selected nursing core courses may be offered in an intensive format.

Full or part-time programs of study are available. Each student’s plan of study includes required core courses and elective courses based on individual student interests. In addition to course work, students receive intensive mentoring by experienced faculty researchers. Emphasis is placed on developing relationships between established and developing scholars to facilitate student success in research, grant writing and dissemination activities.

Following completion of course work, students take a qualifying examination. A dissertation is required once coursework is completed and the qualifying exam is successfully taken. The dissertation may be completed in a traditional or manuscript option format.

The University of Louisville is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC).www.louisville.edu/accreditation

Required Courses

The PhD in Nursing consists of at least 40 semester credit hours of coursework beyond a MSN degree or 55 semester credit hours beyond a BSN degree plus dissertation credit hours.

Course NumbersPhD Coursework Required for Both MSN/PhD and BSN/PhD TracksCredit Hours
NURS 700Theoretical Basis of Nursing3
NURS 702Philosophy of Science3
NURS 710Research Methods I:  Qualitative Research Methods3
NURS 711Research Methods II: Quantitative Design3
NURS 712Research Methods III:  Nursing Measurement3
NURS 714Research Methods IV:  Analysis of Existing Data3
NURS 725Leadership and Health Policy for the Nurse Scientist3
NURS 735PhD Seminar I1
NURS 736PhD Seminar II1
NURS 737PhD Seminar III1
NURS 738PhD Seminar IV1
XXXThree Cognates from a different discipline9
XXXTwo graduate level statistics courses6

Total Credit Hours = 40

Additional Coursework Required for BSN/PhD Track

Course NumbersAll BSN students must complete the following 15 semester hours of master's level coursesCredit Hours
NURS 605Foundations for Advanced Practice3
NURS 607Research and Evidence Based Practice3
NURS 608 OR NURS 655Issues in Economic Information Management or

 

Advanced Pathophysiology

3
NURS 652Applied Statistics3
NURS 657Clinical Prevention and Population Health3

Total Credit Hours = 55

MSN Applicants

Applicants accepted into the MSN-PhD program are strongly advised to have completed a three-credit masters-level statistics course (applied descriptive and inferential statistics) with a grade of B (3.0) or higher within five years before the date of enrollment. Applicants who wish to take a refresher course will be advised of available statistics courses to take in the summer prior to beginning fall PhD coursework in statistics.

Sample Programs of Study

Please contact the Office of Student Services 502-852-1196.

Application Deadlines:

Fall Term Admissions - January 15th
Spring Term Admissions - November 15th

 Applications  may be considered after the deadline on a space available basis.

The holistic review process is used when considering applications for admission to the PhD Program in Nursing. The holistic review considers multiple criteria for admission, including: the applicant’s professional career goals, academic capabilities, GPA, GRE scores, research interests, RN license, area of expertise, community engagement, and potential for scholarly career in nursing.

 Submit the following items to the UofL School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies

  1. UofL Graduate Application available online at graduate.louisville.edu/apply. Include application fee of $60.
  2. Transcripts. If BSN applicant official transcripts from all undergraduate college course work with a cumulative grade point average of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.  If MSN applicant official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate college coursework with a cumulative graduate grade point average of 3.25 on a 4.0 scale.  Bachelor’s degree must be from an institution with a NLN or CCNE accreditation.
  3. Graduate Record Exam (GRE).  Scores that indicate strong verbal, quantitative and analytical potential. Successful candidates generally have an analytical score of 4.0 or higher. For GRE scores prior to August 2011, successful candidates generally have a combined Verbal and Quantitative minimum score of 1100. For GRE scores from August 2011 and after, successful candidates general have scores of 156 Verbal and 146 Quantitative.  Test information is available at www.ets.org.
  4. Proof of English Proficiency: International students for whom English is not their primary language must show English language proficiency by 1) TOEFL examination scores of: Computer-based test minimum score of 220; Written Essay score of 4.0; Paper-based test minimum score of 560; Written Essay score of 4.0; Internet based test minimum score of 79; Written Essay score of 4.0 or 2) by successfully completing the exit examination for the advanced level of the intensive English as a Second Language Program at the University of Louisville or 3) by demonstration of a degree award from an acceptable English language institution or 4) International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores of at least a 6.5 overall band score from the academic module exam.
  5. Three Professional Letters of Recommendation from individuals who can speak of academic and/or professional capabilities and potential for a scholarly career.  Recommendations should be chosen from among: former faculty members, current or immediate past employer, or other nursing/health professionals.  Each person providing a recommendation for you must complete the UofL Graduate School Letter of Evaluation form.  This form is available on line at https://sharepoint.louisville.edu/sites/SIGS/Documents/grad-rec.pdf At least two references should be from nurses.  Recommendations forms/letters must be completed within the last year.
  6. A current curriculum vitae or resume.  Include nursing license number on resume. International students need to be licensed as registered nurses in their country of origin, if licensure is available.  If direct patient care activities are provided, a Kentucky RN licensure prior to December in their first year of study must be obtained.
  7. A written statement of career goals, area(s) of expertise, research interest, and reasons for pursuing doctoral studies.  Maximum three pages; double spaced; 12 point font.

Submit the following to the UofL School of Nursing Office of Student Services

  1. Completed online Legal Questionnaire
  2. Personal interview with School of Nursing faculty will be required.

A Certified Background Check - Please complete the background check through this link. The school code is ni53. You will not send this information to the School of Nursing, as it is handled through the outside agency. If you have issues with the background check, please contact customer service at 888-666-7788 Toll Free.

CLINICAL COMPLIANCE REQUIREMENTS

PhD

  1. CPR Certification:
    Must complete CPR training through the American Heart Association: BLS for Healthcare Providers.
    Requirement fulfilled by providing a copy of the CPR card to OSS.
  2. HIPAA Training Courses:
    Registering for HIPAA courses offered via the CITI platform (www.citiprogram.org) Upon completion, a printout of the completion page for HIPAA security and HIPAA basic must be submitted to OSS. Only required prior to first semester of clinicals. Does not have to be renewed unless notified by the university.
    Requirement fulfilled by providing a copy of the Completion Page to OSS.
  3. Bloodborne Pathogen Compliance:
    Course offered online by the university and provides a Certificate of Completion. Required yearly.
    Requirement fulfilled by providing a copy of the Certificate of Completion to OSS.
  4. Proof of Registered Nursing Licensure:
    Requirement fulfilled by turning in a printed verification from the KBN registry or state where you are licensed.
  5. Immunization Compliance:
    This must be completed at the Campus Health Services office. Check with the immunization specialist at 852-2708 to confirm you are in compliance. For list of required immunizations go to: http://louisville.edu/campushealth/information/immunizations/health-professional-students/health-professional-students-immunizations

PhD Tuition & Program Costs

School of Nursing Costs
PhD

Background Check

$40; at point of application to SON

Books

Cost varies

Cardinal Card (Student ID)

$10 Replacement Costs

Immunizations

Visit Campus Health website for individual costs.

Major Medical Health Insurance

$995.50; may waive with proof of insurance

Parking Permit

Required for UofL campus parking. Costs vary.

Student Health Fee

$52.50 per semester, Campus Health Services

Financial Aid

Full-time students can apply for fellowships and assistantships to support their doctoral studies. Fellowships provide tuition, a stipend and health insurance for one to two years without a work requirement. Assistantships provide tuition, a stipend and health insurance in exchange for a 20 hour per week work requirement as a graduate research or teaching assistant. Fellowships and assistantships are awarded on a competitive basis.

Applicants must consider a number of factors when considering how to pay for graduate school. The following resources will help in the process.

School of Nursing Office of Student Services

Phone502.852.1196 or
1.877.81NURSE (816-8773)
Fax502.852.8783
Address

Health Science Campus
555 S. Floyd Street
Third Floor, School of Nursing
Louisville, KY 40292

Email

UofL Office of Admissions

Phone502-852-3101
Website

Office of Graduate Admissions


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the focus of the PhD program?

A: The program is designed to prepare nurse scientists who may assume a variety of roles in education, research, leadership and health policy.

Q: How long does it take to complete the program?

A: BSN to PhD full-time students complete coursework in three calendar years and then focus on completion of their dissertation. MSN to PhD full-time students complete coursework in three calendar years and then focus on completion of their dissertation. Students may attend on a part-time basis and time to completion varies by the number of credits completed each semester.

Q: Can you be a part-time student?

A: Yes. Please review residency information below.

Q: Is there a requirement for full-time residency?

A: To assure that students have the opportunity to utilize the educational facilities fully and to participate in the intellectual life and research atmosphere of the University, at least two years of study must be spent at the University of Louisville and at least one must be spent in full-time residency. To be considered in full-time residency for one year, a student must be registered for 18 hours in a 12 month period.

Q: Can I transfer in hours?

A: Yes. The maximum number of semester hours transferable, upon request, is six. Up to six additional hours may be requested and considered for special approval. Credits which have been applied toward an earned degree may not be applied toward the doctoral nursing degree.

Q: Are there any courses required prior to starting the program?

A: Applicants accepted into the MSN-PhD program are strongly advised to have completed a three-credit master’s level statistics course (applied descriptive and inferential statistics) with a grade of B (3.0) or higher within five years before the date of enrollment. Applicants who do not meet this requirement will be advised of available statistics courses prior to beginning fall PhD coursework in statistics. In order to do a self-assessment of knowledge in statistics, the following represents anticipated basic competencies from previous statistics coursework:

    • Design of research
    • Frequency distributions
    • Central tendency and variability
    • Probability theory
    • Normal distributions
    • Correlation
    • Simple linear regression
    • Statistical inference
    • Decision, error, and power
    • T-tests
    • One and two-way ANOVAs
    • Nonparametric tests