Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing

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About the Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Program

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing Program is designed to prepare nurse scientists who will assume a variety of roles in education, research, leadership, and health policy. A holistic review process is used when considering applications for admission (GRE Not Required).

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.

 

PhD Pathways

The Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing program can be entered with either a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.

Program Curriculum

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

View Program Curriculum

Plan of Study
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The PhD program is 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.

Alumni Testimonials

  Dr. Lisa Carter-HarrisThe PhD program at the University of Louisville School of Nursing gave me the essential foundation to grow as a scholar and transition into a postdoctoral fellowship seamlessly. The faculty are dedicated to the personal and professional growth of every student exposing them to foundational knowledge, methodologies, and experiences that foster unfettered development and advancement. On a personal note, my experiences in my Philosophy of Science class took the blinders off -- literally and figuratively -- an experience that changed me and ignited a passion for creating new knowledge that is manifesting itself in my professional life presently. I will forever be grateful for the wonderful experiences of that as well as other classes and experiences throughout my doctoral program.

Lisa Carter-Harris, PhD, APRN, ANP-C

  Dr. Melissa PintoI had solid scientific training and advice from UofL faculty mentors. Their guidance resulted in my ability to obtain cutting-edge multidisciplinary NIH KL2 career development training at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic post-graduation. There, with colleagues, I developed a novel technology-based intervention in the area of adolescent and young adult mental health that has been of interest to the general public and the national policy makers.

Melissa D. Pinto, PhD, RN, FSAHM, FAAN

I consider studying as a PhD degree candidate at UofL School of Nursing (SON) as the best thing that has ever happened to me. I benefited from the intellectual stimulating environment and experienced faculty in the classrooms and outside the classrooms. The program opened my horizon and helped me shape my future as a PhD degree holder. Working as a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) provided me with invaluable experience and skills that are very handy in my current job as a nursing faculty. I attribute my success to the supportive, nurturing, and healthy culture of SON on both the academic and social level. As an international student and a GRA, studying and working in a diverse environment that UofL SON embraces, made life easy. There wasn’t even a moment that I felt like a stranger. I am grateful to be a student, a GRA, and forever alumnus of UofL SON.

Maryam Alaradi, PhD, RN

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