Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (DNP) Program Details

The Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PC PNP) Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program is available to both bachelor’s and master’s-prepared nurses wishing to attain a DNP degree. It is designed for either part-time or full-time study.

Study Format

Most classes are offered online.  A few are in a hybrid format with minimal face to face requirements.  Typically programs may be completed as follows:

BSN to DNP Students:

  • The BSN to DNP option can be completed in three and a half years for part-time students, and two and a half years for full-time students.
  • Most students follow a part-time plan of study although a full time plan of study is available.

MSN to DNP Students: 

  • The MSN to DNP option can range from one and a half years to three and a half years and is dependent upon previous post-graduate education.
  • A gap analysis will be performed and an individualized program of study will be developed based on previous graduate education.

Sample Plan of Study 

Campus Visits

All students are required to be on campus for a minimum of 5 visits for the following activities:

  • Health Assessment: 2-3 days on-campus lab.
  • Simulation experiences: total of 3-4 experiences, one time per semester during clinical management courses. Usually lasts one day.
  • DNP Project proposal: usually one day tied in with other on-campus days.
  • DNP Project final presentation: usually one day tied in with other campus visits.  

Clinical Experiences

Your experiences will be individualized, based on your learning needs and desired practice sites. Since education is built on a strong foundation of pediatric experience, you must have at least two years of full-time pediatric experience before starting the clinical portion of the program. The part-time plan of study allows you to work full time while you obtain more of the required experience, if needed.

Clinical practica hours are a total of 756 hours. These hours will be divided over four terms. Some of these hours will be spent in simulation to add to the learning experience. There are also DNP practica project hours for a total of 252 hours. As a result, your clinical hours in the program will be 1000 hours.

Students, Program Faculty and the Clinical Placement Team will work together collaboratively to arrange clinical placements for local students. Clinical experiences are offered in a wide variety of settings, from pediatric primary care clinics to outpatient subspecialty hospital practices. Sites are available at Rush University Medical Center and throughout the Chicago metropolitan area.

For distance students, you will need to consult with your program director to find clinical practicum sites and preceptors that meet program requirements. We recommend that you begin planning your clinical practicum experiences early. Rush has been successful in negotiating most distance clinical practicum contracts, but success is not guaranteed. Rush may need to be recognized as a provider by the board of nursing in your state. Due to the variety of different state regulations and limitations, we cannot guarantee clinical practica placement if you move to another state after matriculating.


Completion of the program makes you eligible for certification as a PC PNP by the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board.

Common Applicant Questions for all Nursing Programs
Admissions Contact
Elizabeth Miranda
Admissions Specialist
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Attend an information session

Learn more about the Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (NP) program at an online information session.