Post-Master's DNP Admissions

Application Deadlines

This program admits students once-per-year for the Autumn semester.

  • Autumn 2024
    Opens: August 15
    Deadline: March 1, 2024

Students interested in being considered for a Fellowship or other available funding opportunities should have their completed application submitted by October 31, 2023.

Visit this page to learn more about requirements related to vaccines, licenses and other requirements upon admission.

Admission Requirements

To be eligible for admission to the Post-Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program applicants must have the following: 

Completed master's degree

Applicants may have a Master of Science in nursing from a nursing education program accredited through the CCNE, ACEN, or CNEA or a master’s degree in another area as long as they also hold a BSN. An applicant’s master’s degree must be from an accredited graduate program. Applicants without an advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) certification are eligible for the program’s Nurse Executive track, while those with certification can apply for either track. Applicants may apply to the Post-Master's DNP program while their master’s degree is still in-progress but must receive the degree by August 1 prior to beginning enrollment.

Active RN license

Applicants must have an active, unencumbered license as a registered nurse in the state where they practice. Applicants may apply before receiving their RN license, but must be in possession of a current, unencumbered RN license by August 1.

Active APRN certification (for clinical expert students only)

All applicants applying to the Clinical Expert track must be in possession of an active advanced practice registered nursing (CNS, CNM, CNP, or CRNA) national certification. Applicants may apply before receiving their APRN certification but must be in possession of a current certification by August 1.

Minimum of a 3.0 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale in the last degree earned that is relevant to the program of study

GPAs are reviewed by Ohio State's Graduate and Professional Admissions Office. Applicants whose GPAs fall below 3.0 may still apply and be considered for admission.

Completion of prerequisite course with a B- or higher

Applicants must complete a prerequisite statistics course. Please see the Prerequisites section below for further details.


Who We Are Looking For

Your application will be reviewed using a holistic approach, meaning all aspects of who you are as an applicant will be considered. This assessment will include academic preparedness and formative experiences in your professional background, education and life. We are also looking for applicants that demonstrate a preferred set of attributes, experiences and strengths described in the following list. This list is not all encompassing, but is meant to guide you in what you may wish to highlight in your written application materials and in your recorded online video interview:

  • Clear understanding of the role of a DNP and the alignment with goals for the future
  • Experience with evidence-based practice (EBP), quality improvement, innovation and scholarship
  • Demonstration of leadership, interprofessional collaboration and teamwork
  • Evidence of resiliency, ability to overcome obstacles, critical thinking and personal and professional growth
  • Local to global community engagement, and diversity of thought, perspective and experience
  • Written and oral communication skills, organization of ideas and emotional intelligence
  • Overall commitment to nursing



Applicants must complete a college-level statistics prerequisite course prior to the posted application deadline. Applicants who have not done so, even if prerequisite course is in-progress at the time of the deadline, will not be considered for admission. A grade of B- or better is required in the prerequisite course. Credit by examination (such as AP test scores) is not accepted towards the prerequisite requirement.

The prerequisite statistics course should include:

  1. A review of basic statistical concepts
  2. A review of univariate statistical analysis
  3. A review of bivariate statistical analysis
  4. An overview of commonly used statistical tests
Prerequisite course taken at Ohio State

Prerequisite coursework may be completed at Ohio State during a bachelor’s program or as a non-degree student. To take undergraduate courses outside of a degree program, you must first apply as an Extended Education student. Applications can be completed through the Office of Distance Education and eLearning (ODEE). Please contact ODEE to learn more about enrollment as a continuing education student at 614-292-8860 or e-mail

The following Ohio State courses fulfill the prerequisite course requirement: 

  • PSYCH 2220 Data Analysis in Psychology
  • PSYCH 3321 Quantitative and Statistical Methods
  • PUBHIBO 6210 Applied Biostatistics I
  • STATISTICS 1350 Elementary Statistics
  • STATISTICS 1450 Introduction to the Practice of Statistics
  • STATISTICS 2450 Introduction to Statistical Analysis
Prerequisites taken at another institution

For prerequisite coursework taken at another institution, please visit the Transferology website to see if the courses that you have taken or plan to take at another institution qualify. If you are unable to find results through these tools, then an evaluation of the courses will need to be done by the Office of Graduate & Professional Admissions

As a prospective student, to submit courses for evaluation please prepare the following information on each course taken outside of Ohio State: 

  • Course number 
  • Course title 
  • Institution 
  • Semester of completion 
  • Number of credit hours earned 
  • Course description from institution’s course catalog 

This information can be submitted directly to; be sure to clarify that you are submitting the courses in reference to the DNP program. Results for course evaluations can take up four weeks and the Office of Graduate & Professional Admissions may request further information on a course, such as a syllabus, and may refer you to contact an Ohio State transfer credit coordinator in the academic area for further review. 


How to Apply

To apply for the Post-Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program applicants must complete the following prior to the posted deadline:

1. Apply online

Applicants can complete an application online for the next available Autumn cohort at The Ohio State University Graduate and Professional Admissions office’s website here. A $60 fee is required at the time of submission of the application.

In the online application applicants will designate whether they are pursuing the Clinical Expert track or the Nurse Executive track, as well as whether they will attend full-time or part-time.

2. Submit all college transcripts

Applicants must submit official transcripts from all colleges and universities that you have previously attended at both either the undergraduate or graduate levels. This includes transcripts for any post-secondary courses taken during high school or of coursework that appears as transfer credit on another transcript. Transcripts from The Ohio State University do not need to be submitted.

Transcripts should be submitted directly by the sending institution by mail or electronic transfer to be considered official. Please request your transcripts be sent early so they arrive before the deadline. Transcripts can be sent to:

The Ohio State University
Graduate Admissions Office
P.O. Box 182004
Columbus, OH 43218-2004


Applicants may upload a copy of an official transcript at the time of application or after by way of the Admissions Uploader. However, documents submitted in this manner are considered unofficial, but will suffice for the purposes of application. Web based documents, online grade reports, and related materials are not acceptable. If an applicant is admitted, they will be required to supply official transcripts sent direct from your previous institutions.

For details regarding these methods of submitting transcripts, please visit The Ohio State University Graduate and Professional Admissions office’s website. Please direct all transcript related questions to the Graduate and Professional Admissions office at 614-292-9444 or to

3. Current resume/curriculum vitae

An applicant’s resume or curriculum vitae should use a similar format to what would be used for a job application. Applicants should include previous education, professional experiences, community service, volunteer activities, publications, presentations, research and leadership experiences on the resume or CV. Applicants may submit this document at the time of application or after by way of the Admissions Uploader.

4. Purpose and goals statement

Applicants must upload a purpose and goals statement, including a narrative of professional experience, career goals and match to the goals of DNP education. In this statement, applicants should address the following:

  • Why are you seeking education in the DNP program at this time in your career?
  • What specifically are your academic and career goals for which the DNP program will prepare you best?
  • How have your life experiences prepared you for being a doctoral-prepared nurse?
  • Identify a clinical area of interest and explain why this is an important issue to address in your area of expertise in nursing.

The statement should address each of the above questions and will act as a demonstration of the applicant’s writing skills to the program faculty. The response is not to exceed three single-spaced pages. Consideration will be given to both the quality of the applicant’s writing and the congruence between the stated goals and those of the program.

Applicants may submit this document at the time of application or after by way of the Admissions Uploader.

5. Recorded online video interview

Applicants are required to complete a recorded online video interview through an online portal called HireVue, during which applicants are recorded answering a brief selection of questions regarding interests and goals in nursing and the DNP program. This interview can be completed at any time during the application window. However, applicants should only do so after completing and submitting an application. Note: Applicants must complete the recorded online video interview before the application deadline. For further details, instructions and links to the online portal go to the interview. 

6. Three letters of recommendation

Applicants will be asked to provide the names and email addresses of three (3) individuals who can speak to their clinical and leadership abilities. Once the application is submitted, an email will be automatically generated and sent to these recommenders with a link and further instruction on how to submit letters of recommendation. Applicants are encouraged to submit their application far in advance of the deadline so that recommenders have ample time to upload letters of recommendation. 

Letters of recommendation should be submitted from individuals who are familiar with the applicant’s academic ability, professional experience and potential to succeed in the highest level of nursing practice. Applicants should provide recommenders with information on the applicant’s intended degree and specialty and a copy of the submitted purpose and goals statement. Recommenders should address the applicant’s potential for success in a rigorous graduate program and what attributes and experiences they feel will allow the applicant to excel as an advanced practice nurse or nurse executive in the chosen specialty. Finally, applicants should make recommenders aware of the submission process and the application deadline by which letters must be submitted.

7. Verification of hours form 

Applicants must download the PDF Verification of Hours form, complete it per the instruction below and on the form itself and upload it with the application. Applicants can submit the form at the time of application or after submission by way of the Admissions Uploader.

Instructions for completing the Verification of Hours form:

  • For applicants certified as an APRN:

Applicants should fill out the form as instructed and attach proof of APRN certification. This attachment may be a screenshot of proof of certification or a scanned or PDF verification card and must include the applicant’s full name, license number and expiration date.

  • For applicants in the process of earning your APRN certification:

For applicants who will receive APRN certification prior to the start of the DNP program, but after the application period, the form should be filled out as instructed in the document. Applicants will then be required to provide proof of receipt of APRN certification by August 1, if the applicant is admitted to the program, and will receive further instructions on how to do so after being admitted.

  • For applicants not certified as an APRN:

If the applicant is not APRN certified and is not currently pursuing advanced practice certification, the applicant should download the Verification of Hours form and provide it to a representative of the master’s degree program (such as a program director or administrator) to verify the number of clinical project hours earned through the program. Once the form has been completed by the program representative, it should be returned to the applicant, and be uploaded to the application. Non-APRN applicants with more than one master’s degree must submit a form for each completed master’s degree to verify hours.

A note on clock hours and how it pertains to different types of students: To graduate with the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree, a student must complete a total of 1,000 post-baccalaureate clinical clock hours. There is a total of 500 hours built into the DNP program’s curriculum. The remaining 500 are achieved either through previous hours completed in a master’s degree or through additional clinical hours completed in the DNP program.

Applicants certified as an APRN will be given credit for a maximum of 500 hours, as these applicants would have been required to complete at least that many as part of a master’s degree to sit for the national certifying exam.

For applicants who completed a non-APRN master’s degree in nursing or a non-nursing master’s degree, master’s-level clock hours must be tabulated by a representative from the completed master’s program. This would include hours of field experience related to healthcare and that were supervised by a faculty member, such as projects that involved a clinical topic or healthcare leadership topic. Applicants who have completed less than 500 clock hours during a master’s degree program can still apply to the Nurse Executive track of the DNP program and be considered for admission, but will need to work with an advisor to build additional coursework into the DNP program curriculum to earn the necessary hours before graduation. This additional coursework will add credit hours to the curriculum plan and will result in additional tuition costs.

8. Test of English proficiency - International applicants only

Details regarding what English Proficiency tests are acceptable, the scores required and how to submit scores may be found on The Ohio State University Graduate and Professional Admissions office’s website here.

9. Supplemental application for current or former Ohio State graduate students

If you are currently or have been previously enrolled in a degree granting graduate program at The Ohio State University for any length of time, you would be considered a Graduate Intra-University Transfer Student. Be sure to choose the appropriate application for "current or former" Ohio State students after following the Apply link found here. In addition to that online application, you must complete a Supplemental Application. This separate application must be submitted to the College of Nursing directly at Choose any of the following options to access this application:

Failure to complete all required steps of this application process by 11:59 pm EST on the day of the posted deadline will result in your application not being considered for admission, with no exceptions. 

Most applicants may review the status of their application anytime at If you are currently or have been previously enrolled in a degree granting graduate program at Ohio State for any length of time, you are considered a Graduate Intra-University Transfer and can contact to review application status.

For Post-Master’s applicants to the DNP program wishing to pursue a specialty certification

Applicants who wish to pursue a DNP along with a certification in an advanced nursing specialty must apply to the BSN to DNP program instead of following the process detailed above. The application process for the BSN to DNP program may be found here. These applicants must also complete BSN to DNP application process by the deadline posted for the BSN to DNP program, not the deadline of the Post-Master’s DNP application process above. If this deadline has already passed, it is recommended that applicants wait and apply next year during the next application cycle or apply to the Post-Master’s DNP program as detailed above, but without pursuing an advanced nursing specialty.

Current Post-Master’s DNP students that wish to pursue an advanced nursing specialty should refer to their Student Handbook and contact their program manager.

Once an applicant is offered admission to the BSN to DNP program and accepts that offer, they may then petition the program to have their completed, graduate-level, nursing coursework reviewed to determine how it can apply to the degree requirements of their curriculum.


Admission Timeline and Deferrals

All required materials listed above must be submitted by the posted application deadline to be considered for admission. Please allow up to five business days for the status of materials to be updated on your application status webpage.

For those who applied for Autumn 2024, please review the admissions timeline here. This admissions timeline covers what can be expected throughout the application process, including an anticipated timeline for when admissions decisions will be released and next steps if offered admission.

Applicants are not able to defer admittance. Applicants unable to begin studies in the term to which they applied will be required to reapply in the future.

For questions regarding our admissions process or requirements, please contact our Student Affairs team at

In accordance with the non-discrimination policy of The Ohio State University and the College of Nursing, we strictly prohibit any discrimination based upon age, color, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, national origin, religion, pregnancy, or veteran status in its application, admission, or enrollment practices.

Ohio State is committed to treating applicants fairly and with dignity and respect. Please click here to review Ohio State's new post-admissions policy.

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Dynasty Stokes
Dynasty Stokes, graduate

“The DNP program provides me with the knowledge and skills to become an effective leader who can identify problems and use evidence-based practice to make meaningful change.”