Healthcare Insider Blog

DNP vs PhD in Nursing

  • Healthcare Alvernia

In 2004, The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) endorsed the position that suggested the DNP be the terminal degree for all nurse practitioners by the year 2015.

Since the emphasis for this need of highly-educated nurses from AACN and other organizations such as the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), the number of DNP programs across the country has greatly increased from 20 programs in 2006 to 264 this year and 60 additional DNP programs in the planning stages. There are now DNP programs available in 28 states across the country, plus the District of Columbia.

Though the DNP is the best option for those wishing to pursue a career as an advance practice nurse, there is another option for nurse practitioners seeking a doctoral education: a PhD. The differences between these degree programs and the careers they lead to are substantial.

To help you decide which program matches your career goals, Alvernia University created this infographic, showing the differences between a DNP and a PhD in nursing.

 Doctor of nursing practice vs phd

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