Doctoral education, whether practice or research, typically requires that you complete a specific project that demonstrates synthesis of your work and lays the groundwork for future scholarship. Your final DNP project produces a tangible and deliverable academic product focusing on a change that impacts health care outcomes either through direct or indirect care.
The final DNP product documents outcomes of the student’s educational experiences, provides a measurable medium for evaluating immersion experiences, and demonstrates the student’s growth in knowledge, expertise, and leadership.
All DNP Projects Should:
- Focus on a change that impacts health care outcomes either through direct or indirect care.
- Have a systems (micro-, meso-, or macro- level) or population/aggregate focus.
- Demonstrate implementation in the appropriate arena or area of practice.
- Include an evaluation of processes and/or outcomes (formative or summative).
- DNP projects should be designed so that processes and/or outcomes will be evaluated to guide practice and policy. Clinical significance is as important in guiding practice as statistical significance is in evaluating research.
- Provide a foundation for future practice scholarship.
Types of DNP Projects
This list reflects a range of types of DNP projects. This is a sample list and is not exhaustive.
- Translate research into a practice change
- Quality improvement (care processes, patient outcomes)
- Implement and evaluate evidence based practice guidelines
- Analyze policy: develop, implement, evaluate or revise policy
- Design and use databases to retrieve information for decision making, planning, evaluation
- Conduct financial analyses to compare care models and potential cost savings, etc.
- Implement and evaluate innovative uses of technology to enhance/evaluate care
- Design and evaluate new models of care
- Provide leadership of inter-professional and /or intra-professional collaborative projects to implement policy, evaluate care models, transitions, etc.
- Collaborate with researchers to answer clinical questions
- Collaborate on legislative change using evidence
- Work with lay and/or professional coalitions to develop, implement or evaluate health programs (such as health promotion and disease prevention programs for vulnerable patients, groups or communities)