Parent Page: Programs & Academics id: 26455 Active Page: BSN to DNP CNS Adult/Gerontologyid:27005

BSN to DNP Adult/Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is a practice doctorate that prepares clinical scholars recognized for outstanding leadership and innovative evidence-based patient/population centered outcomes. The program focuses on interprofessional collaboration and developing competencies in practice, leadership, and quality improvement and safety that lead to enhanced outcomes important to patients, families, providers, and organizations.

The BSN to DNP curriculum is in line with the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties' (NONPF), the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists (NACNS) and American Organizations of Nurse Executives (AONE) commitment to move all entry-level nurse practitioner education to the DNP degree by 2025. The program is not an addition to master's studies, but rather an integration of the objectives and learning opportunities required for attainment of doctoral level core and population-focused competencies.

OU College of Nursing's Adult/Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist program prepares skilled nurses to function at the highest level of care in a wide range of health care settings where patients with adult/geriatric care needs are served.

Clinical experts in the diagnoses, interventions and treatments of illnesses, CNSs work with other professionals to advance the nursing practice and improve outcomes in patient care, in addition to providing clinical expertise to influence system-wide changes in care.

Those who earn a doctoral degree as a clinical nurse specialist often:

  • Lead and collaborate in an interdisciplinary healthcare team
  • Assist and offer guidance to patients and their families as they navigate the complex healthcare delivery system
  • Serve as educators, consultants, evidence-based researchers, change agents and case managers, as well as clinical nurses

Graduates of this program can be found working in independent or collaborative practice, hospitals, outpatient, rehabilitation facilities, extended care situations hospice and home health care.

To learn more about career options available to graduates of the Doctoral of Science in Clinical Nurse Specialist: Adult/Gerontology program, visit or the National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists.

Residency requirements: Due to federal regulations from the Department of Education, the College of Nursing currently accepts applications for its online doctoral degree programs from residents of the states participating in the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA). A list of participating states can be found at: Applicants are encouraged to check with their local State Boards of Nursing regarding any specific professional licensure requirements prior to applying or enrolling. 


Program Start: Fall 

Clinical Nurse Specialist: 67 credit hours/ 1002 clinical hours (all clinical hours must be completed in the state of Oklahoma).

Hybrid Program: Some on-campus and online components 

Prerequisite Courses

Nursing Research 

General Statistics 

Admission Requirements

  • Application deadline - April 1
  • Completion of a Bachelor's or Master's degree in Nursing from an accredited institution
  • Minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA for the last 60 hours
  • Current United States license to practice as a Registered Nurse in state where clinical rotations are completed
  • University admission and supplemental applications [Including submission of three reference letters, an essay, and a resume]
  • Potential interview with DNP faculty
  • Completion of all prerequisite courses prior to application deadline