Question about doctoral degrees for NPs

  1. I am planning on becoming an RN, getting a BSN, and then I WAS thinking of getting a master's degree in nursing so that I can practice as a nurse practitioner. Instead, should I plan on getting a doctorate in nursing? Are current doctorate nursing programs going to be adequate for the (possible) new requirements to be an NP?
    I am a little confused.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   christvs
    Quote from linzyann
    I am planning on becoming an RN, getting a BSN, and then I WAS thinking of getting a master's degree in nursing so that I can practice as a nurse practitioner. Instead, should I plan on getting a doctorate in nursing? Are current doctorate nursing programs going to be adequate for the (possible) new requirements to be an NP?
    I am a little confused.

    I am pretty sure you will need to get your DNP (doctorate in nursing practice) to practice as an NP, because as of the year 2015 all advanced practice nurses (NPs included) will need a DNP to practice. If you have an MSN and graduate from NP school before 2015 (like me-I'm an NP student now in an MSN program) then you will be grandfathered in and won't have to get the DNP, unless you want to. But everyone from 2015 onward who wants to go to school to become an NP will need to get the DNP.
  4. by   elkpark
    The "DNP-as-entry-level-for-NP-by-2015" proposal is just that so far, a proposal. A few specialty and education organizations have produced position papers that are being circulated and discussed. (And, of course, the unversities that are throwing together DNP programs are pushing for this; more money for them.) Nothing is official yet. Keep in mind that this (nursing) is the same occupational group that has been discussing/debating making the BSN the minimum entry level for generalist nursing for some 30 years now, and that hasn't happened yet ...

    There are some older threads here that discuss the pros and cons of the proposal at length -- lots of info and opinions there, if you want to search and review them.
  5. by   traumaRUs
    Elkpark - you are so very right! This is just a PROPOSAL - nothing set in stone yet.
  6. by   Spacklehead
    Also, just wanted to add since the DNP programs are so new, I don't believe that they are accredited yet.

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