Post-MSN Doctorate of Nursing Practice


in South Carolina for best graduate nursing school programs


Ranked in the nation for Best Graduate Nursing Schools - DNP Programs


Asynchronous online*


ANCC pass rates for 2022

Now accepting applications for Spring 2024

Application Deadline: September 30, 2023

Program Overview

The Post-MSN to DNP programs are offered online and address the most contemporary aspects of expert clinical practice and in-depth knowledge and experience in leadership, health systems design and evaluation, evidence-based practice, health policy, and applied research. The programs are designed for current APRNs who wish to further their clinical expertise in their current specialty area or in palliative care. In these programs, a practice improvement project will be implemented with oversight from faculty.

Why MUSC's Post-MSN Program

  • All tracks receive mental health and palliative care education as part of their curriculum.
  • Our Program faculty consists of nationally recognized educators and researchers. Experts and leaders in the field with a passion for mentoring the next generation of nurse practitioners. 
  • We are widely recognized for providing a supportive learning environment that has a low student-to-faculty ratio, expert faculty, and preceptors as well as highly successful complex clinical settings.


Plan of Study

Year 1 Semester 1    
NRDNP 873 Scientific Underpinnings IV 3 sh
NRDNP 850 Organizational Theory and Health Care Systems 3 sh
NRDNP 860 Applied Epidemiology and Biostatistics 4 sh
Year 1 Semester 2    
NRDNP 858 Evidenced Based Practice, Quality and Safety 3 sh
NRDNP 846 Frameworks for Leadership 3 sh
NRDNP 708 Advanced Health Policy and Advocacy 3 sh
Year 1 Semester 3    
NRDNP 862 Practice Inquiry and IRB 3 sh
NRDNP 830 Applied Health Care Economics and Finance 3 sh
Year 2 Semester 1    
NRDNP 890 Residency 5 sh
NRDNP 836 Informatics in Health Care Delivery 3 sh
Year 2 Semester 2    
NRDNP 890 Residency 5 sh

CON Palliative Care Education

DNP Palliative Care

As a leader in palliative care education, the MUSC College of Nursing has been recognized for its holistic approach to emphasizing the value in palliative care.

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Prepare to empower patients and promote evidence-based care. Look toward the next stage by applying to one of the College of Nursing’s degree or certificate programs.

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Financial Aid & Scholarships

Learn more about Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), loans, and financial aid resources.

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Discover answers to commonly asked questions about the College of Nursing, admissions, and academic programs.

Meet Your Lead Faculty, Dr. Whitney Smith

Dr. Whitney Smith

Whitney Smith
Lead Faculty AGNP Track

My name is Whitney Smith and I am the Lead Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (AGNP). I have been a nurse practitioner (NP) for close to twenty years! I always knew that I wanted to be a health care provider. While I was in college for my Biology degree, I learned about nurse practitioners and how the nursing model guides their holistic patient care - and I was hooked; I knew that this was the type of medicine I wanted to practice! The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) was the school I decided on; I received my BSN in 1999, my MSN in 2001, and my DNP in 2017.

I spent much of my clinical career managing acute and chronic illnesses, moving patients toward better health outcomes and a reduction in health care costs.  I have worked as a nurse practitioner in women’s health, primary care, and skilled nursing care. I always enjoyed precepting student nurse practitioners and had a desire to eventually teach at the university level. In 2013 I had the amazing opportunity begin my career in academia teaching at my alma mater, here at MUSC!

I am passionate about education; as an educator in the field of nursing I strive to inspire growth and learning in the students I teach. I endeavor to engage their minds and the passions that drive them.  I challenge them to become expert diagnosticians as well as compassionate, respectful and innovative providers of medical care. I believe that understanding and teaching quality improvement is integral for enriching patient care, health outcomes and access to care. It is the foundation for the DNP degree.  Because my first love was practice, I continue to see patients one day a week at a free clinic. We provide primary care with a focus on chronic disease management for the uninsured and underserved population. We work in interprofessional teams and act as a clinical site for our DNP students. It is my belief that my passion and pride for my chosen career as a DNP and educator is conveyed to my students and helps to inspire enthusiasm and growth in the field of nursing.

*DNP students are expected to attend on campus learning intensive.