University of Arizona

The University of Arizona College of Nursing holds fast to the philosophy and vision of their first nursing leader, professor, and director, Pearl Coulter, as they continue to train nursing students as practitioners, but also train for academic, administrative and research careers. Schools Scholarships Student Support

Best ProgramsAccredited Hybrid On-campus Online Public

BSN   DNP   MSN   RN-to-MSN   RN-to-BSN   Entry-Level Master's   Entry-Level BSN   MSN-to-DNP   MSN to PhD   CRNA   NP   PhD   BSN-to-PhD   Post-grad Certificate   Other  

  • Accreditations CCNE COA
  • Location(s) Arizona
  • Address 1305 N Martin Ave, PO Box 210203, Tucson, Arizona, 85721-0203
  • Telephone 1-520-626-6154
  • Request Information

The University of Arizona, a public institution, was established in 1885.


Pre-Professional Nursing Major (BSN)

The pre-professional nursing major is for those students who are interested in applying for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. Pre-nursing courses are completed throughout the first and second year, completing the general education requirements for the BSN program. After completion of the Pre-Professional Nursing program, the student is able to apply for the upper division BSN curriculum.

Pre-Professional Program Admission Requirements (not all inclusive)

  • 3.5 unweighted high school cumulative GPA
  • 1310 SAT (critical reading and math) or 28 ACT

Transfer students are admitted to the program if they have an earned 3.4 cumulative GPA on all transfer coursework.


Master of Science for Entry to the Profession of Nursing (MEPN)

Admission to our Master of Science for Entry to the Profession of Nursing (MEPN) program is for those students who are driven to work. The program is highly competitive, challenging, and supportive through an excellent educational community. At the University of Arizona College of Nursing, students are diverse with talent, experiences, viewpoints, and cultural backgrounds. Students should show a talent with scholarship, integrity, leadership, and service to others.

The MEPN program is 15-months in length for full time students including a rigorous schedule. It is recommended not to work because the master's level coursework will require more than 40 hours a week to complete.

Program options are available in both Phoenix and Tucson.

Master of Science in Nursing Clinical Systems Leadership (RN to MSN) Online Program

Our Master of Science in Nursing Clinical Systems Leadership (RN-MSN) online program offers two paths for ADN students for a 44-week credit, two year program and for BSN students to complete a 31-credit, 15-month program.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Online Program

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is similar to other practice doctorates such as the MD, JD and PharmD. The Doctor of Nursing Practice is for students who want to excel in their profession. Students are built into scholarly clinicians utilizing research methods to improve the health-care quality and patient safety for their selected specialty population. There is a strong focus in the classroom and clinical practice settings on health assessment, health promotion, health-care maintenance, clinical decision-making, and illness management.

Two Entrance Options

  1. Post-Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) student
  2. Post-master's (nursing) student

Part-time and full-time options are available.

Side note: Nurse anesthesia students must attend full-time.

Credit Fulfillment for DNP program

The BSN-DNP curriculum is 74-89 credits with a minimum of 1,000 practice immersion hours. At completion, the student will be eligible to take the national certification exam and then apply for licensure in the graduate's practice state.

The MS (Nursing)-DNP curriculum to become a nurse practitioner (NP) is 71-74 credits. Most students will be able to transfer coursework to reduce the total number of credits needed to complete degree requirements.

MS to DNP with Specialty

This program is created for nurses who already possess a Master of Science in Nursing degree.  The students will be able to choose a specialty area as listed below. The nurse-midwife, nurse anesthetist or clinical nurse specialist holding an MSN who are not certification-eligible may select the MS-DNP entry pathway. And, nurses who desire additional specialty areas in advanced practice may want to select this pathway as well. This is a 43-credit program.

Requirements for Graduation (not all inclusive)

  1. Enrollment requires unencumbered and active state licensure as a Registered Nurse
  2. Complete a minimum of 1,000 practice immersion hours
  3. Includes extensive clinical time
  4. Faculty-mentored scholarly DNP project

Once the student has completed the degree program they may sit for their individual certification exam.


  • Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Nurse Anesthesia

Nurse Anesthesia

The foundation of the doctoral anesthesia program is focused on innovative and evidence-based practice, reflecting the application and implementation of credible research findings.

The program is 36 months of full-time study online and face-to-face with clinical hours within the program.

Admission Requirements (not all inclusive)

  1. At least 3.0 minimum science grade point average (GPA). Be sure to include all biology, Chemistry, physics, anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology courses in your calculation.
  2. At least one year (two years preferred) of current and continuous full-time critical care nursing experience in an adult or pediatric critical care setting (ICU).
  3. Examples of critical care units may include, but are not limited to: surgical intensive care, cardiothoracic intensive care, coronary intensive care, pediatric/neo-natal intensive care.

Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD) Online Program

Students may consider a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD) if they want to focus on research in a clinical, academic or scientific environment.

How to enter the program

  • Post-Bachelor of Science in Nursing student (BSN-PhD Option - 79 credits) or
  • Master's degree in nursing (MS-PhD Option - 64 credits)
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP-PhD option)

The PhD program coursework is completed fully online. Students are required to attend a mandatory on-campus and one-week orientation.

DNP/PhD Dual Degrees

The DNP/PhD Dual Degrees option is available upon admission to one of the doctoral programs. Dual degree students must satisfy both DNP and PhD admission and enrollment requirements.

Post DNP-PhD

Students interested in attaining strong research competencies may consider completing a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) to Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree. The plan of study will be individualized for each student.

Post-Master of Science - Nurse Practitioner (NP) Certificates

  • Family
  • Adult-gerontology acute care
  • Psychiatric mental health
  • Pediatric

Length of completion: Via online route, each certificate is four semesters long.

2019 NCLEX Pass Rates

  • BSN - 97.92%
  • MSN - 100%

Accreditation and Approval

The BSN, MSN, and DNP programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

The DNP Nurse Anesthesia specialty is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA).

The University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 1917.

UA Nursing programs are approved by the Arizona State Board of Nursing.


US News & World Report (2020)

  • #106 (tie) in National Universities
  • #68 (tie) in Best Colleges for Veterans
  • #97 in Best Value Schools
  • #46 (tie) in Top Public Schools
  • #47 (tie) in Best Online Graduate Nursing Programs
  • #29 (tie) in Best Online Bachelor's Programs
  • #23 (tie) in Best Online Bachelor's Programs for Veterans
  • #30 (tie) in Best Nursing Schools: Master's
  • #28 (tie) in Best Nursing Schools: Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • #81 (tie) in Best Global Universities

NICHE (2019)

  • Best Big Colleges in America #66 of 131
  • Top Public Universities in America #77 of 672
  • Most Diverse Colleges in America #95 of 1,592
  • Colleges with the Best Student Life in America #107 of 1,542
  • Best College Campuses in America #107 of 1,408
  • Best Colleges in America #210 of 1,647
  • Colleges with the Best Academics in America #297 of 1,591
  • Best Value Colleges in America #461 of 1,590
  • Best College Dorms in America #589 of 1,370
  • Most Liberal Colleges in America #636 of 687
  • Best College Locations in America #712 of 1,553
  • Best Colleges in Arizona #2 of 15
  • Most Diverse Colleges in Arizona #2 of 13
  • Colleges with the Best Academics in Arizona #2 of 11
  • Colleges with the Best Student Life in Arizona #2 of 11
  • Best College Campuses in Arizona #2 of 10
  • Top Public Universities in Arizona #2 of 7
  • Best Big Colleges in Arizona #2 of 3
  • Best Value Colleges in Arizona #3 of 11
  • Best College Dorms in Arizona #5 of 10
  • Most Liberal Colleges in Arizona #5 of 5
  • Best College Locations in Arizona #7 of 10

Forbes (2019)

  • #200 Top Colleges
  • #62 in Public Colleges
  • #106 in Research Universities
  • #38 in the West
  • #62 America's Best Value Colleges

The Princeton Review (2018-2019)

  • The Best 384 Colleges
  • Best Western
  • Green Colleges
  • Best Health Services

College Factual ranked UA #5 Best Colleges for the Money in Arizona (2018-2019).

MONEY Magazine ranked The University of Arizona #309 Best Colleges For Your Money (2018-2019). listed UA in the Top 10 Best Colleges in Arizona (2018-2019).

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