How to Apply – DNP

Questions? Contact Us

For questions about the DNP programs or applying to the DNP programs, call the Office of Student Affairs at MU School of Nursing at 573.882.0277 or 800.437.4339, or email Leslie McPeak at

This program accepts rolling admissions, so you can apply at any time. We recommend you submit your application at least six weeks before the beginning of the term in which you wish to start your course work.

Application Dates

Start classes in

Apply by


July 1


Dec. 1


April 1


Students can begin coursework any semester following program acceptance.  N7087 Leadership and Technology Institute On-Campus days is required within your admission year during summer semester.  (Fall start would be the next summer.)

Admission Criteria

Students interested in the DNP program must meet the following admission criteria:

  • Baccalaureate or master degree in nursing from a program accredited by a national organization responsible for nursing accreditation (i.e. Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or related field for DNP Leadership students and must be from a regionally accredited program from the Higher Learning Commission.
  • A grade point average (GPA) of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale based on the last 60 hours of undergraduate nursing course work for applicants with less than a master’s degree.
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale for applicants with a master’s degree in nursing.
  • Applicants who do not meet the minimum GPA requirements for their BSN or MS also may provide additional evidence documenting examples of outstanding professional leadership, practice and/or scholarship for special consideration.

Prerequisite Coursework

Completion of a graduate course in introductory statistics or biostatistics within the last 5 years is required prior to entry or may be taken concurrently with N7087 the first semester of program enrollment.

Transfer of Graduate Credits

Up to 38 graduate credits of required coursework can be accepted in transfer with the approval of the program director.

Distance DNP Students

Due to higher education regulation changes, the University of Missouri is unable to accept applications for admission to online programs from students residing in several states. See the State Authorization for Distance Education page at Mizzou Online to learn more.

Federal regulations require the Sinclair School of Nursing to disclose whether its degree programs meet U.S. states’ educational requirements for licensure [34 CFR 668.43 (a)(5)(v)].

The University of Missouri Office of eLearning’s State Authorization office maintains information by jurisdiction for students and prospective students on the respective institutions’ state authorization web pages.

The Sinclair School of Nursing has not made a determination as to whether the program curriculum meets the educational requirements for licensure or certification in states outside of Missouri.

Current and potential students are encouraged to determine the requirements for any jurisdiction in which they intend to seek admission by contacting the state licensing board.

How to Apply

The Sinclair School of Nursing is processing DNP applications through NursingCAS, the centralized application service for nursing. Visit to start an application or log into your existing account. If you need help with NursingCAS, visit the applicant help center or contact applicant support with questions.

Following is a checklist of items that are required to be uploaded for the application:

  1. Official copies of all transcripts
  2. A personal statement of your professional goals and how this program will help you achieve them. Your personal narrative should be typed, single-spaced, and attached to this application. In your personal narrative, please include:

    • a summary of your clinical background/experiences as a registered nurse
    • a summary of your specific clinical experiences in your chosen specialty area (e.g. setting(s), responsibilities, and/or roles)
    • a description of any work-related projects and/or professional committee involvement
    • a description of your population of interest (e.g. pediatrics, elderly, women, etc.), setting of interest (e.g. acute/critical care, primary care, school, health department, etc.) and, if applicable, sub-specialty interest area (e.g. diabetes, oncology, cardiology, etc.)
    • the type of position you intend to pursue after graduation (e.g. teaching, administration, clinical practice, research, or other)
    • your long-term career goals
    • Optional question for DNP applicants:  Describe your role as a DNP compared to that of an MSN prepared nurse.
    • Discuss a scholarly project: The scope should be large enough that it would result in, for example, a change at the organizational, system, regional or national level; new or revised state health policy; or the establishment of a significant new health-related service to a population or geographic region.
    • The purpose of the essay is to provide the Admission Committee insight into the professional goals and expectations of the applicant, congruency of the topic area with faculty expertise and an opportunity to evaluate the applicant’s written communication skills.
  3. Copies of current, unencumbered Registered Nurse license(s).
  4. Copies of all advanced practice nursing certification and/or credentialing/recognition documents for applicants with a master’s degree as applicable.
  5. Completion of the clinical hour verification form for applicants with clinical hours from previous MS and/or certificate programs.
  6. Curriculum vitae using the official MU Sinclair School of Nursing template. 
  7. Professional Recommendations: Submission of three (3) professional recommendations supporting the applicant’s potential success in the DNP program.
    • References should be from master’s or doctorally prepared nurses or faculty members who can address the applicant’s potential or ability to function in the advanced practice nursing role
    • Applicants currently enrolled in a nursing program must submit at least one (1) recommendation from a current faculty member in that program.
    • Recommendations from family, friends, fellow staff nurses, or minister will not be accepted.

Please Note

The Graduate Studies Application Fee and your MU Sinclair School of Nursing Application Fee is required for all new DNP applicants, both U.S. citizens and permanent residents. The application fee is nonrefundable; it is not applicable to the educational fee, student activities fee, computing fee or student health fee; and it is valid for one academic year (three semesters).
Once you have completed your online application, the fee must be submitted online before your application can be processed.

International Applicants

Satisfactory TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Cambridge C1 Advanced scores within the last 2 years are required for non-native English speaking applicants.

Interview by Invitation

Once application materials have been processed through the online application system and after a preliminary review of academic credentials and applications materials, an interview may be arranged. The interview process will take place within weeks of the completed application being received. Student interviews may take place in person or via electronic means for distance students.