DNP: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The DNP: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner option prepares graduates to function as doctorally prepared nurses at the highest level of clinical practice, to translate knowledge into practice, to apply policy, as well as design, implement and evaluate innovations to improve health care systems and patient centered outcomes. 

This option offers registered nurses the opportunity to expand their scope of practice to include the care of individuals, families and groups with psychiatric and mental health needs.

Our lifespan curriculum is a synthesis of knowledge derived from nursing science, neuroscience, behavioral change theories, motivational theories, learning theories and other psychotherapeutic frameworks to provide a holistic perspective from which to assess, diagnose, treat, manage and evaluate acute and chronic mental illnesses.

You will learn about neuropsychopharmacology, interprofessional collaborative practice, crisis intervention, trauma-informed care, health policy, family systems theory, psychotherapy, group therapy, care of vulnerable populations, promotion of mental health and prevention of mental illness, substance use and co-occurring disorders, and other mental illnesses across the lifespan.

Who Should Apply

If you’re already working as a nurse and are interested in achieving the highest level of nursing practice you should consider our DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner program.

Application Deadlines

Fall 2022

Priority: 12/01/2021
Final: 06/01/2022

Requirements

Overview

The DNP: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program is a practice doctorate program designed to prepare advanced practice nurses and nurse leaders as practice scholars to improve patient outcomes, systems change, and translate evidence into practice to improve safety and quality. The DNP graduate is prepared to apply evidence-based practice, quality improvement, and systems thinking to transform health care systems and improve patient care. Graduates are also prepared to lead inter-professional collaborative teams to shape policy, health care systems, and clinical and patient care innovations. The Post-BSN DNP graduates are further prepared as psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners to deliver and manage health care, health education, and health promotion to clients and families across the lifespan.

The DNP: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner option consists of 74 credit hours and a minimum of 1000 direct and indirect clinical hours. Questions about program requirements should be directed to the program director, Cara Padavano or Associate Dean of DNP Program, Mercedes Echevarria.

Programs of Study

Fall 2020 or Later Start

Courses

For full listing of courses and descriptions, please visit the University Bulletin.

New Student Orientation

This mandatory virtual orientation, held in the summer, gives you the opportunity to connect with your faculty and fellow students, consult with advisers and prepare for your program.

On-Campus Requirements

Campus Learning and Skills Intensive (CLASI)

You will come to campus during the week following your completion of NURS 6222: Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning to participate in CLASI, which prepares you for your clinical practicum experiences

DNP Project Presentation

During the last semester students will present their work in an open forum to their faculty and peers.

Technology Requirements

Beginning fall 2018, each student admitted to the DNP program is expected to own and have ready access to a laptop or tablet with basic productivity software for classroom use. View Policy.

Complete applications that are submitted by the priority deadline will be reviewed first. Applications do not have to be verified by the priority deadline, only completed and submitted. Questions? Contact the Office of Admissions at [email protected].

A completed application includes the following components:

  • Minimum of bachelor's degree in nursing from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Preferred scholastic GPA of at least 3.3 on a 4.0 scale from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Official transcripts (from all post-secondary schools)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Current resume
  • Statement of Purpose describing your career goals relative to the doctoral study. You should include a general idea for your DNP project. Your vision for your post-DNP contributions to advance the nursing profession through scholarship and evidence-based practice must be emphasized in the statement Also, briefly describe your professional nursing practice and indicate any current or previous leadership roles. The applicants with a clear idea of a potential DNP project and the ability of the project to enhance/improve/contribute to nursing practice will be given preference for admission. 
  • Active and unencumbered RN license from a U.S. state or territory

Note:

  1. GW Nursing is subject to state authorization requirements in order to offer an approved nursing curriculum. View available states.

None

You must record a minimum of 1000 practice hours with an approved preceptor. Practice hours consist of a minimum of 500 direct clinical hours and 500 indirect DNP practice hours. You are encouraged to find your own preceptor, but we can provide information on local clinical sites if needed.  A faculty member may conduct a site visit during your academic program progression.

Required Documentation

  • Current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certificate
  • Current advanced cardiovascular life support (ACLS) certificate
  • Immunization records including vaccination or immunity to hepatitis B; measles, mumps and rubella (MMR); varicella; diphtheria; polio and tetanus
  • Documentation of negative test results for tuberculosis (purified protein derivative (PPD) and/or chest x-ray)

Questions about clinical placement requirements should be directed to [email protected].

Complete applications that are submitted by the priority deadline will be reviewed first. Applications do not have to be verified by the priority deadline, only completed and submitted. Questions? Contact the Office of Admissions at [email protected].

A completed application includes the following components:

  • Bachelor's degree in nursing from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Preferred scholastic GPA of at least 3.3 on a 4.0 scale from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Official transcripts (from all post-secondary schools)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Current resume
  • A Statement of Purpose describing your career goals relative to the doctoral study. You should include a general idea for your DNP project. Your vision for your post-DNP contributions to advance the nursing profession through scholarship and evidence-based practice must be emphasized in the statement Also, briefly describe your professional nursing practice and indicate any current or previous leadership roles. The applicants with a clear idea of a potential DNP project and the ability of the project to enhance/improve/contribute to nursing practice will be given preference for admission. 
  • Active and unencumbered nursing licensure

Note:

  1. GW Nursing is subject to state authorization requirements in order to offer an approved nursing curriculum. View available states.


None


You must record a minimum of 1000 practice hours with an approved preceptor. Practice hours consist of a minimum of 500 direct clinical hours and 500 indirect DNP practice hours. You are encouraged to find your own preceptor, but we can provide information on local clinical sites if needed.  A faculty member may conduct a site visit during your academic program progression.

Required Documentation

  • Current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certificate
  • Current advanced cardiovascular life support (ACLS) certificate
  • Immunization records including vaccination or immunity to hepatitis B; measles, mumps and rubella (MMR); varicella; diphtheria; polio and tetanus
  • Documentation of negative test results for tuberculosis (purified protein derivative (PPD) and/or chest x-ray)

Questions about clinical placement requirements should be directed to [email protected].

Frequently Asked Questions