Academic Catalog


Doctor of Nursing Practice Nursing Practice with a Concentration in Post-Masters Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (DNP)

Doctor of Nursing Practice

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program is designed for nurses that are seeking a terminal degree in nursing practice.  DNP-prepared nurses are equipped to serve as clinical experts, change agents, and advocates in addressing healthcare in our nation.  Specific areas of focus include: advanced practice skills, healthcare policy, organizational and systems leadership, interprofessional collaboration, evidence-based research, healthcare technology, informatics, and patient advocacy.  The DNP program at ODU is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

ODU offers three tracks in the DNP programs: 1) Post-Master’s Advanced Practice (build on traditional master's programs for nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse midwives, and nurse anesthesia), 2) Post-Master’s Nurse Executive, Post-Masters Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (for APRNs seeking to add a PMHNP and DNP) and 3) Post-Baccalaureate Nurse Anesthesia (CRNA).  In order to graduate from Old Dominion University’s Post-Master’s APN and NE DNP programs, a student must successfully complete all 37 post-masters credit hours of required course work, including an evidence-based DNP project, and all clinical practica. It will take a full-time student four semesters (spring, summer, fall and spring) to complete the program. A part-time student will complete the DNP program in seven semesters (spring, summer, fall, spring, summer, fall, and spring). All of the master’s programs in nursing at ODU include six credits that also meet requirements for the DNP program allowing students to complete the DNP in three additional semesters. See specific differing credit requirements and curriculum plans for Post Masters Psych Mental Health DNP and Post Baccalaureate Nurse Anesthesia programs.

See detailed information on each track in the following sections. Refer to the School of Nursing (SON) website for program specific curriculum plans

Post Master's Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Carolyn Rutledge, Associate Chair of Nursing

Katia Hall, Program Director

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Post Masters Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program has been developed to address a growing demand from advanced practice nurses for programming that enables them to obtain a DNP and an additional national certification as a nurse practitioner in the area of psychiatric mental health. This Post Masters Psychiatric Mental Health DNP program is targeted to licensed, registered nurses with an APRN MSN who wish to gain new skills and knowledge for board certification to provide psychiatric care services as a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. The Psychiatric Mental Health Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree will provide additional education for advanced practice nurses in:

  • Advanced diagnostics and practice skills in psychiatric mental health;
  • Care of the underserved and increasingly diverse population; and
  • Incorporation of emerging care technologies.

To graduate from Old Dominion University’s DNP Program, a student must have successfully completed all required course work, including prerequisite courses of NURS 800 and NURS 809, an evidence-based research project and all clinical practicum. The DNP Post Master's Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner track is offered in a hybrid format and is distance friendly.