Doctor of Nursing Practice – Application Process

Doctor of Nursing Practice – Application Process

Please note it is the applicant’s responsibility to insure ALL required application documents are uploaded and/or completed, all official transcripts are received by NursingCAS by the deadline of  January 1, 2018.  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Steps for Applying to the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program

The UCA School of Nursing receives applications for admission and most applicant credentials exclusively through the Nursing Central Application Service (NursingCAS), provided by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN). The steps for applying are as follows:

  1. Select the “Apply” link at
  2. Create an account and log in to your secure NursingCAS online application. When creating an account, be sure to click ‘yes’to the question: “Are you applying to a graduate level program in nursing?”.
  3. When logged in, complete all ‘Required’ items on the ‘Application Checklist’ as directed by the NursingCAS website. This includes arranging for all official transcripts to be sent to NursingCAS.
  4. In addition, the UCA School of Nursing requires the following items to be submitted through NursingCAS (these items are indicated as ‘Optional’ on the NursingCAS website):
    1. In the ‘Professional Experience’ section, submit information regarding your work experience, professional activities, certifications, honors/awards, etc.
    2. In the document upload section, please upload and designate University of Central Arkansas:
      • CV/resume
      • Published manuscripts (optional)
      • Other documents:
        • Verification of precepted clinical hours from master’s program of study Clinical-Practice-Hour-Validation DNP 2017.
        • Verification of RN license
        • Personal Essay (writing sample) – Submit a 2-3 page personal essay describing your professional goals and how participation in the DNP program will enhance these goals. The essay is an important part of the application and serves as a basis for the applicants to be invited for an interview with faculty members. The purpose of the essay is to provide the Graduate Admissions Committee insight into the professional goals and expectations of the applicant, congruency of topic area with faculty expertise, and an opportunity to evaluate the applicant’s written communication skills. The essay should identify a topic of clinical interest or a practice-based problem of interest that you might pursue as the topic for your final DNP project. Please address the following:
          • What is your primary reason for pursuing a doctoral degree in nursing?
          • The DNP is a practice focused doctoral degree; as oppose to a PhD, which is a research focused doctoral degree. Tell us about your clinical practice and how you see the DNP fitting in with your future career goals.
          • What preliminary ideas do you have for a DNP capstone project?
          • Describe clear connection(s) or relationship(s) you currently have with systems, agencies and/or facilities necessary to successfully complete your proposed DNP capstone project.

Essay Requirements:

  • Submit as a Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx) file
  • Double-spaced
  • 12-point font (Times New Roman preferred)
  • APA (6th ed.) format for in-text citations and references (if applicable)
  1. In NursingCAS, be sure to designate the University of Central Arkansas in the ‘Designation’ section of the application. NursingCAS charges $65 for your application to be sent to the first program destination and $35 for each additional designation.
  2. International applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate proficiency in the English language by submitting official TOEFL scores (required minimum of 83 or higher on the iBT). The exam must have been taken within the last two (2) calendar years. Scores should be sent directly to the UCA School of Nursing (attention Rose Schlosser).
  3. Following a preliminary review of the completed application file, the School of Nursing Graduate Admissions Committee will invite selected applicants to interview prior to the final admission decision.
  4. Once the applicant has accepted a position in the DNP program, the student will need to apply to the UCA Graduate School. The application to the Graduate School is online with a 25$ fee


Enrollment Requirements: Once accepted, candidates must complete the following before enrolling in courses:

  1. Complete a background check, as directed by the School of Nursing, with favorable results.
  2. Provide proof of required immunizations.
  3. Provide proof of health insurance coverage.
  4. Attend on-campus intensive and orientation to the program on June 5th and 6th
  5. Proof of completion of the UCAonline orientation.
  6. Provide proof of HIPPA and Infection Control training.


If any of the above requirements are not satisfied, admission to the program may be rescinded.

Questions regarding the NursingCAS application process should be directed to the NursingCAS Customer Service team.

Please direct questions about program/application requirements to:

Ms. Rose Schlosser, M.Ed

School of Nursing

University of Central Arkansas

201 Donaghey Avenue

 Conway, AR 72035-0001


General Information    Application Dates    Admission Requirements

Curriculum & Course Description    Outcomes    On-campus Dates