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Nursing Science PhD

Our Nursing Science PhD program prepares you to be a clinical researcher who advances the nursing care through scientific discovery. 

Graduates go on to lead clinical research programs, serve in senior academic positions and influence national health policy.  

Our philosophy is to admit a select number of highly qualified applicants. This ensures close working relationships with faculty research mentors. 

Our faculty are passionate about combining science with clinical practice to improve the lives of our patients and communities. 

View the curriculum

Fast Facts: Nursing Science PhD
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Program Type:
Full-Time or Part-Time
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3-5 Years

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Per Credit Hour
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Class Size:

Our Approach

You learn from faculty who are active practitioners in their field at a top-tier academic medical center, RUSH University Medical Center.  

This means many program advisers and faculty have extensive experience that will enrich your learning. 

We have designed the curriculum to enhance the quest for knowledge essential for a scholarly research career.  

This curriculum combines core courses in research, theory and role development, with supporting courses in your research area. 

Nurses who hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree are eligible to apply.  

We also encourage non-nurses who hold a graduate degree in a health-related field to apply. 

Program Length and Location

Our program is offered online on a part-time or full-time basis and takes three (full-time) to five (part-time) years to complete. 

Periodic visits to campus are necessary: 

  • An on-campus orientation occurs approximately one week prior to starting the program. 
  • Subsequent visits for intensive learning sessions occur every summer for the next three years of study. 

You will also complete educational and research practica. These practica experiences are individually tailored to your area of interest.  

Under the guidance of your faculty adviser, educational and research practica may be completed within the RUSH network or at other approved sites. 



We recommend that you commit to pursuing full-time study. This enables timely completion of the program and continuity in your research.  

Most full-time students complete the program within four to five years. Part-time students require an additional year to complete the core coursework. 

Many students work full-time or part-time while completing their core coursework.  

Most students reduce or eliminate their work hours while completing the advanced clinical research practicum and dissertation.

Program Tuition

At RUSH University, we know your education is a big investment. We want to make sure you have all the information to be able to make the best financial decisions for you and your family.

Tuition for the Nursing Science PhD program is $1,344 per credit hour.

Full-tuition scholarships are available for eligible, newly admitted students.  

We also have pre- and post-enrollment scholarship awards and funding.  

Learn about student financial aid options. 

Nursing Science Career Opportunities

You will gain the knowledge and experience to launch and sustain externally funded research programs and be a clinical scholar. 

A terminal graduate degree in nursing meets the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation requirement to qualify as faculty in a nursing college in Illinois. 

Nursing Science PhD Faculty
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Admissions Contact Information

Elizabeth Miranda 
Admissions Specialist 
(312) 942-6986

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