Nursing: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (D.N.P.)

Nursing: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (D.N.P.)
Smiling Health Care professional in a red scrubs shirt and stethoscope

Our Post-Baccalaureate Doctor of Nursing Practice AGACNP program is designed for registered nurses with a baccalaureate degree to gain leadership and innovation skills with eligibility to sit for board certification as a nurse practitioner in Adult-Gerontology Acute Care. We prepare students for leadership with evidenced-based clinical and management competencies to transform healthcare delivery.

  Credit Hours: 76   |     Program Length: Customizable  |    Tuition Cost

This online program prepares you to be an Adult-Gerontological Acute Care Nurse Practitioner certified by AACN or ANCC.

Why get a Post Baccalaureate Doctorate of Nursing Practice in Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner?

If you enjoy complex clinical patient management in a fast-paced environment, the adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner role may be the right fit for you. Acute care nurse practitioners are respected members of the rounding team and are recognized in the field for their contributions to improving patient care. The need for these providers continues to grow with changing national demographics and increasing acuity. Geared for the hospital and acute settings, adult-gerontological acute care nurse practitioners use skills in diagnostic reasoning and management of the acutely ill patient using evidence-based practice. Students in the program can fast track through master’s level courses, take the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP) certification exam and graduate with the terminal DNP degree.

Why choose UNH's Doctor of Nursing Practice program?

This online post baccalaureate DNP is designed for nurses with a bachelor’s degree who wish to pursue academic preparation as a Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner while completing a terminal degree in nursing. Students benefit from the focus on enhanced leadership, evidenced-based clinical and management skills, and development of advanced competencies for transforming healthcare delivery and practice. A dedicated UNH faculty advisor will help you balance the workload and manage your academic schedule. With small class sizes, our asynchronous program gives you the flexibility to complete coursework on your own schedule, a great option for working professionals. We offer several opportunities for on-campus visits during the program, including clinical practicum, doctoral symposium, and graduation.

Potential Career Areas

  • Cardiology and cardio-thoracic surgery
  • Critical care and trauma
  • Healthcare research
  • Hospital administrator
  • Hospitalist medicine
  • Orthopedic surgery
  • Transplant medicine and surgery
  • Specialty clinics
  • Acute and sub-acute care facilities

Request Information

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Briana White, UNH DNP Graduate



Briana White, Doctor of Nursing Practice '22G and participant in the prestigious Johnson & Johnson Nurse Innovation Fellowship from 2019 to 2022 (sponsored by the Center of Creative Leadership, Johnson & Johnson and Nurse Approved), was eager to make an impact in the ever-changing nursing industry.

Thrilled to be involved in a program that nurtures a spirit of innovation intended to change the landscape of healthcare through the triad of education, mentorship, and leadership, she used her current home care management experience to sculpt her DNP scholarly project. Her fellowship project implemented these principles to create a first-in-nation model of care for home health. Learn more here >  

Curriculum & Requirements

The online Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program prepares nurses for the highest level of specialized nursing practice. DNP graduates are innovative leaders prepared to translate evidence into practice, improve systems of care and measure health outcomes in diverse settings. Students are required to plan, implement, and evaluate a quality improvement project customized to support their unique aspirations.

The Post Baccalaureate DNP (PB DNP) program is for nurses with a baccalaureate degree in nursing who are seeking leadership development and certification as an Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner.

Graduates of the Post Baccalaureate Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Program are prepared to practice as an Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (AGACNP) and increase access to acute care medical and surgical services. Building upon a background in nursing, graduates can apply newly learned knowledge and skills within the acute care setting, including and not limited to hospitals and ambulatory care centers. Successful completion of this program permits students with sit for national certification with the AACN or ANCC.  

Admission Requirements

  1. Registered Nurse licensure: An unencumbered registered nurse license in the United State
  2. Letters of recommendation: Three letters of reference pertaining to academic ability, professional competency, and personal character are required.
  3. Updated resume
  4. Professional statement: The professional statement must include a written essay responding to each of the following:
    1. Describe a clinical experience that demonstrates your critical thinking and readiness to enter doctoral study.
    2. Explain how you use a nursing theoretical/conceptual lens to improve care.
    3. Tell us about a U.S. policy or health issue you are passionate about and why.
  5. Interview: After initial review of the application, applicants may be contacted for an interview.

Degree Requirements

Clinical Hours: 500*

Required Courses
NURS 812Advanced Pharmacology and Therapeutics3
NURS 814Advanced Health Assessment Across the Lifespan3
NURS 816Health Promotion Theory and Population Health3
NURS 818Foundations of Evidence Based Practice3
NURS 820Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan3
NURS 900Foundations of Scholarly Writing & Professional Communication3
NURS 910Genomics & Ethics3
NURS 911Diagnosis & Management - Diagnostic Reasoning3
NURS 915Leadership, Role & Collaboration3
NURS 917Biostats and Epidemiology3
NURS 850Foundations in Acute Care3
NURS 851Foundations in Acute Care Clinical Practicum2
NURS 852Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner I3
NURS 853Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner I Clinical Practicum2
NURS 854Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner II3
NURS 855Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner II Clinical Practicum2
NURS 856Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner III3
NURS 857Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner III Clinical Practicum2
NURS 858Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner IV3
NURS 859Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner IV Clinical Practicum2
NURS 947DNP Systems Thinking Seminar I3
NURS 948DNP Systems Thinking Seminar II3
NURS 949DNP Systems Thinking Seminar III3
NURS 964Information Systems and Technology Improvement3
NURS 967Evidence Based Practice Methods3
NURS 969Health Systems Policy, Economics & Financial Planning3
NURS 973Quality & Safety3
Total Credits76

Clinical hours are completed through the following required courses: NURS 851, NURS 853, NURS 855, NURS 857, NURS 859.

Upon completion of the Master of Science in Nursing, the graduate student is expected to:

  • Employ strategic leadership skills to shape practice environments to produce positive, patient centered, healthcare outcomes at individual and system levels.
  • Serve in a healthcare leadership and change agent role as part of a diverse, complex, and patient-centered health care system.
  • Act as a practice scholar to design, direct and evaluate system changes to promote safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable and patient-centered care.
  • Use data analytic methods, information systems and technology to evaluate, integrate and apply knowledge that will improve programs of care, outcomes of care and care systems.
  • Use translational science and analytic methods to develop, identify, implement, and evaluate best practices to improve health care and health care systems.
  • Design and implement health promotion and clinical prevention strategies across the health/illness continuum to optimize health and disease management.
  • Systematically use improvement methods to monitor and evaluate care processes and outcomes and applies data for continuous improvement and safety
  • Advocate for social justice through policy, professional and political engagement.
  • Applies leadership principles that support inter-professional practice.
  • Facilitate interprofessional collaboration to implement practice models, peer review, practice guidelines, health policy, and standards of care.

In addition, the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner graduate will:

  • Meet eligibility requirements for certification as an AGACNP with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or as an ACNPC-AG with the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN)
  • Meet state requirements for certification, licensure, and prescriptive authority
  • Obtain federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) authorization to prescribe controlled substances (Schedules II through IV) for patients within the AGACNP’s practice area
  • Participate in the education of future AGACNPs through preceptorship
  • Be lifelong learners

Apply now


Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: June 15
  • Spring: December 1
  • Summer: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Online

New England Regional: No

Accelerated Masters Eligible: No

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence Form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.


If you attended UNH or Granite State College (GSC) after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester, UNH Non-Degree work and GSC. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must upload a copy (PDF) of your transcript in the application form. International transcripts must be translated into English.

If admitted, you must then request an official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Transcripts from all previous post-secondary institutions must be submitted and applicants must disclose any previous academic or disciplinary sanctions that resulted in their temporary or permanent separation from a previous post-secondary institution. If it is found that previous academic or disciplinary separations were not disclosed, applicants may face denial and admitted students may face dismissal from their academic program.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

The professional statement must include a written essay responding to each of the following.

  1. Describe a clinical experience that demonstrates your critical thinking and readiness to enter doctoral study.
  2. Explain how you use a nursing theoretical/conceptual lens to improve care.
  3. Tell us about a U.S. policy or health issue you are passionate about and why.


A current resume is required with your submitted application.

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program-specific application questions.

International Applicants

Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.


Experience excellence in nursing with New Hampshire's first DNP Program. Nurses with expanded expertise have the ability to shape care at many levels, from improving care for patients and families to reducing health disparities in their communities to leading positive, systems-level change in their organizations.

Explore Program Details

Students participate in an online synchronous orientation to get them started in the program and they have one on one access to faculty mentors and their advisor for project development. Students are encouraged to come to campus to present their final DNP project during the DNP scholarly symposium.

While in the online Doctor of Nursing Practice program, students are required to successfully complete all DNP coursework, have 1,000 documented advanced practice clinical hours (including up to 500 clinical hours earned in the master's program), produce a publishable scholarly paper, and successfully present their DNP Project.

DNP projects are designed in consultation with faculty and content experts. This allows DNP students to develop knowledge, skills, and strategies for a quality improvement project.  Students assume the role of leader of their DNP project team in interdisciplinary collaboration, consultation, and partnership as they plan and implement their project. The DNP project proposal is developed in NURS 980, Doctoral Scholarly Project I; the project is implemented in NURS 981, Doctoral Scholarly Project II; and then evaluated and disseminated during their final course, NURS 982, Doctoral Scholarly Project III.

Tuition & Fees:

The University of New Hampshire’s online graduate tuition and fees information is available on the UNH Business Services Website. Program costs and technology fees are subject to change.

Course Fees: Specific courses may have additional course fees. Visit the course schedule for more information. 


Financial Aid:

Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loans are a form of federal financial aid available to Graduate Students. To apply, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).


UNH Online courses are taught by full-time faculty with excellent practical and pedagogical experience.

Meet our Faculty

College of Health & Human Services

Our Nursing Department embraces scholarship, innovation, integrity and sustainability. We offer the leadership education you need to transform today’s healthcare delivery.
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Faculty & Student Spotlights

  • Cathleen Colleran Headshot
    The Tap on the Shoulder
    Completing a BSN in Nursing from Husson College through Eastern Maine Medical Center, Cathleen Colleran also earned a master’s degree in Community Health Nursing from the University of Mass-Dartmouth in 2000, and a DNP from Regis College in 2010. She remembers with great affection her undergraduate mentor who, when Cathleen donned a cap and gown for the DNP…
    Learn More