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Nursing Science PhD Curriculum

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Our students develop the skills of a clinical researcher. These skills are based on the integration of biological, behavioral and clinical sciences.  

Your clinical research skills contribute to the scientific basis of the health care. This includes patients across the life span — in any setting where care is provided.  

You will also develop the leadership skills necessary to serve as senior academics and influence health care systems and policy. 

Graduates meet the following outcomes: 

  • Synthesize and apply theoretical and research-based knowledge in the investigation of clinical phenomena 
  • Test and integrate disciplinary knowledge in models of clinical practice across the levels of prevention 
  • Generate and disseminate research-based, clinically related knowledge 
  • Analyze health care trends to influence health and social policy for diverse client populations 
  • Participate in collaborative interprofessional practice and research 
  • Assume faculty responsibilities within a senior academic environment 
  • Function as a clinical scientist

Graduates Meet the Following Standards

You must complete a minimum of 64 term hours, including a dissertation, for graduation. You must complete degree requirements within eight years.


Commitment to a research area

Before starting the program, you will identify the research area or clinical population you are interested.  

This helps ensure that you and your advisor are a good match and focus your plan of study to help you proceed in a timely manner. 

The following are the available research areas: 

  • Health promotion and risk reduction interventions across the lifespan 
    • Health benefits of breastfeeding 
    • Early childhood mental health promotion 
    • Aging and family issues 
    • Cardiovascular health 
    • Caregivers of older adults 
    • Persons with developmental/intellectual disabilities 
    • Marine oils and health outcomes 
    • HIV/AIDS 
    • Enhancing parenting skills 
  • Particular types of interventions 
    • Complementary and alternative medicine approaches 
    • Physical activity 
    • Technological advances, including telehealth and medicine approaches 
  • Outcomes of interest 
    • Improved mental and physical health 
    • Reducing health care costs 
    • Reducing disparities 

These research areas change and expand, so we recommend that you inquire about research that our current faculty are focused on.

Course Curriculum 

Theory courses

  • NSG - 680 Understanding Science Paradigms (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 681 Understanding Theoretical Framework Development (Credits: 3) 

Subtotal: 6

Statistics courses

  • NSG - 522 Applied Epidemiology Biostats Nursing (Credits: 3) 
    * Waived if student has taken an equivalent graduate-level biostatistics course in the preceding three years. 
  • NSG - 684 Intermediate Statistics (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 685 Multivariate Statistics (Credits: 3) 

Subtotal: 9

Research courses

  • NSG - 675 Literature Synthesis Approach (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 686 The Research Process: Quantitative Design and Methods Part I (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 687 The Research Process: Quantitative Design and Methods Part II (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 688 The Research Process: Qualitative Design and Methods (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 691 Advanced Clinical Research Practicum (Credits: 1-12 minimum, credit hours: 8) 

Subtotal: 20

Ethics course

  • NSG - 683 Ethical Conduct in Research Settings (Credits: 3) 

Subtotal: 3

Role courses

  • NSG - 600 Leadership in Evolving Healthcare Environments (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 614 The Leader and Policy, Politics, Power and Ethics (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 679 Evidence-Based Teaching in Health Professions (Credits: 3) 
  • NSG - 690 Grant Writing (Credits: 3) 

Subtotal: 12


Credit hours: 5 

Subtotal: 5


  • NSG - 699 Dissertation Research (Credits: 2-4) 
    • Minimum total: 12 (Minimum 3 credit hours and maximum 4 credit hours per term) 

Subtotal: 12

Bridge coursework

Individual for each student; only for BSN-PhD students. 

Subtotal: 8 

Total: 75 for BSN-PhD; 67 for MSN-PhD

View the current course catalog

Refer to the course catalog for our most up-to-date curriculum information.