Online DNP FNP Programs – What’s the Best Program for You?

Last Updated/Verified: Jun 18, 2022

A doctor of nursing practice (DNP) is the highest degree that a family nurse practitioner (FNP) can attain. Those wanting high levels of autonomy, responsibility, and salaries at the top of the pay scale should consider the DNP pathway in the family nurse practitioner specialty. This degree requires hundreds of clinical hours as well as advanced nursing coursework. To be eligible for this type of program, you’ll need an active RN license, a BSN or MSN degree, and some professional nursing experience in the family care field.

Compare the 2021 Top Ranked Online FNP DNP Programs

The popularity and versatility of the Family Nurse Practitioner area of care mean that many nurses aspire to achieve the highest degree level within the specialty. With online and hybrid options becoming more common, it can be difficult to land on the perfect school for your doctoral FNP program. That's why we have ranked the best online DNP-level FNP programs in the country. Check out our listings below to find a great program, and visit our Methodology page to learn more about how we developed our rankings.

1.
Montana State University

Bozeman, MT

Overview:

Montana State University's online DNP-FNP program provides students with a best-in-class nursing education for serving rural populations. In addition to improving their leadership capabilities, students gain clinical expertise and judgment in treating patients across all age groups. The ability to work independently as a nurse practitioner is taught throughout the program.

Highlights:

  • On-site visits are required for a few courses
  • Students must complete DNP Scholarly Projects
  • Graduates gain the education to sit for national exams
DNP Programs
2.
University at Buffalo

Buffalo, NY

Overview:

The online DNP-FNP program at the University at Buffalo teaches critical thinking for nurses and independent decision-making across a range of clinical settings. From youth to elderly populations, students learn to improve health outcomes by applying evidence-based care. They gain didactic and clinical training to treat patients with co-occurring conditions.

Highlights:

  • The GRE or MAT test is required for admissions
  • Students must attend occasional on-campus visits
  • Completion of a DNP project is needed to graduate
3.
Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX

Overview:

Texas Christian University offers a clinical-focused, online DNP-FNP program that enables nurses to advance their careers and capabilities. Students gain mastery in diagnosing and treating patients of all ages. The advanced program also focuses on leadership, health promotion and education, and preventative health measures.

Highlights:

  • The online DNP-FNP is only open to Texas and New Mexico state residents
  • At least two on-campus intensives are required
  • Most clinicals can be completed near students' home locations
DNP Programs
4.
Messiah University

Mechanicsburg, PA

Overview:

Messiah University offers an online DNP-FNP that prepares students to carry out the highest roles in nursing. With a clinical and leadership foundation, the program covers advanced patient assessment, health informatics, and epidemiological principles for providing care to patients of all ages, with chronic and acute ailments.

Highlights:

  • Curriculum includes a Christian foundation
  • Some graduate coursework may transfer
  • On-campus summer sessions are required
5.
Missouri Online

Columbia, MO

Overview:

The University of Missouri, or simply Missouri Online, offers a DNP-FNP for those looking to achieve the terminal practice degree in nursing. Focusing on health and wellness promotion, disease prevention, and management of chronic illnesses, this advanced program prepares RNs for complex, real-world clinical situations.

Highlights:

  • Summer on-site visits are required for students
  • Master's level students may be able to transfer some credits
  • The program readies graduates for national certifications
DNP Programs

Why Get a DNP FNP Degree?

There has been a distinct shift toward family nurse practitioners opting to obtain their DNP degree. Some careers that today require an MSN might expect candidates to hold a DNP at some point in the future.

As a family nurse practitioner who holds a DNP, a range of direct and indirect patient care careers are available to you. These include FNP positions in hospitals, clinics, private practices, and more, as well as roles in hospital administration, research, and academia. FNP doctorate graduates may also choose to work in roles shaping policy and procedures to improve care outcomes and advance the nursing profession.

This type of terminal degree shows a significant commitment to attaining more knowledge and skills. Let’s take a look at some of the key components of this degree type.

Pros

  • Family nurse practitioners who hold a DNP can command higher salaries
  • The DNP pathway opens up options for high-level managerial, research, and even teaching positions
  • Options for BSN to DNP and MSN to DNP

Cons

  • DNP programs in the FNP specialty can be long and expensive
  • Those with an MSN may wish to pursue a shorter post-graduate certificate in the specialty instead (depending on their career goals)
  • ADN-educated RNs will most likely need to complete a BSN before they can consider this pathway

How to Choose an Online DNP FNP Program

In terms of advanced degrees for family nurse practitioners, a DNP is the lengthier option. The number of credits can range between 70 and 93, depending on the school you attend and the degree level you enter the program with. More educational facilities are offering DNP programs online, with some of them delivered in a hybrid format that weaves in some campus visits.

Students searching for an online DNP program in the family nurse practitioner specialty should take great care to choose an accredited program to ensure future employability. Many online DNP programs can be taken on a part-time or full-time basis, allowing some students to continue working while they complete their doctorate studies. However, the challenging nature of the program may make working difficult; some schools recommend committing to the program full-time.

DNP FNP Curriculum

The family nurse practitioner DNP curriculum includes intensive core and specialty nursing courses. BSN to DNP programs usually require more core coursework before the FNP portion can begin. Common courses students might encounter include:

  • Clinical reasoning
  • Healthcare economics
  • Health informatics
  • Social determinants of health

Typically, a minimum of 1,000 clinical hours are required as part of the FNP-DNP program. These may include family care clinical hours as well as DNP practicum hours. Clinical placements for online students are usually arranged in the student’s local area and approved by the program’s clinical coordinator. A DNP project or capstone course may also be required in order to graduate.

List of Online DNP Family Nurse Practitioner Programs

To find an online or hybrid DNP family nurse practitioner program near you, browse through our listings below.

Select Your State:

Alabama

Samford University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Birmingham, AL
The University of Alabama
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice
Tuscaloosa, AL

Arizona

University of Arizona
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Tucson, AZ

Arkansas

University of Arkansas
  • Online Doctor of Nursing Practice: Family Nurse Practitioner
Fayetteville, AR
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Little Rock, AR

California

Brandman University
  • Doctor Of Nursing Practice, Across the Lifespan/Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Irvine, CA
Loma Linda University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Concentration
Loma Linda, CA
Touro University California
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice - Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Vallejo, CA
University of California, Irvine
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice - Family Nurse Practitioner Concentration Hybrid
Irvine, CA

Colorado

University of Northern Colorado
  • BSN - DNP program with Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Emphasis
Greeley, CO

Delaware

University of Delaware
  • DNP Family Nurse Practitioner Primary Care (Family/Individual Across the Lifespan) Hybrid
Newark, DE

Florida

Florida State University
  • DNP - Family Nurse Practitioner
Tallahassee, FL
Palm Beach Atlantic University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
West Palm Beach, FL

Georgia

Augusta University
  • DNP- Family NP
Augusta, GA

Hawaii

Hawai‘i Pacific University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Honolulu, HI

Idaho

Idaho State University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
Pocatello, ID

Illinois

Bradley University
  • DNP – FNP TRACK
Peoria, IL
Rush University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (NP)
Chicago, IL
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Specialization Hybrid
Edwardsville, IL
University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Chicago, IL
University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Rockford, IL

Indiana

Marian University Indianapolis
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Track Hybrid
Indianapolis, IN
Saint Mary's College
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
Notre Dame, IN

Iowa

Clarke University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
Dubuque, IA
University of Iowa
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Iowa City, IA

Kansas

University of Kansas
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Lawrence, KS
Washburn University
  • Bsn To Dnp-Family Track (FNP)
Topeka, KS

Kentucky

Western Kentucky University
  • BSN to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner
Bowling Green, KY

Maryland

Johns Hopkins University
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Family Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Baltimore, MD

Massachusetts

University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • BSN TO DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
Amherst, MA
University of Massachusetts Boston
  • BS-to-DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner
Boston, MA

Michigan

Northern Michigan University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Marquette, MI
Saginaw Valley State University
  • Bsn To Dnp- Family Nurse Practitioner (Fnp) Hybrid
Center, MI
Wayne State University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
Detroit, MI

Minnesota

Augsburg College
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (DNP-FNP) Hybrid
Minneapolis, MN

Mississippi

University Of Mississippi Medical Center
  • BSN-DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Jackson, MS

Missouri

Maryville University
  • BSN to DNP: FNP (Family)
  • DNP-NP: FNP (Family)
St. Louis, MO
Missouri Online
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (DNP)
Columbia, MO
University of Missouri - St. Louis
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
St. Louis, MO
University Of Missouri Kansas City
  • 2ND NP ROLE DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
Kansas City, MO

Montana

Montana State University
  • Nurse Practitioner, Family/Individual
Bozeman, MT

Nebraska

Creighton University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Omaha, NE

New Mexico

New Mexico State University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Las Cruces, NM

New York

Hunter College
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
NY, NY
University at Buffalo
  • Post-BS to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
  • Post-MS to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner
Buffalo, NY

North Carolina

University of North Carolina Wilmington
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Wilmington, NC
Winston-Salem State University
  • BSN to DNP - FNP Specialty
Winston-Salem, NC

Ohio

Otterbein University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner, BSN to DNP, MSN included Hybrid
  • Family Nurse Practitioner, Associate’s Degree in Nursing to DNP, MSN included Hybrid
Westerville, OH
The Ohio State University
  • BSN to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner
Columbus, OH
The University of Toledo
  • BSN-DNP Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
Toledo, OH

Oregon

University of Portland
  • Family Nurse Practitioners (Fnp) Hybrid
Portland, OR

Pennsylvania

Messiah University
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice: Family Nurse Practitioner (Post-BSN to DNP-FNP)
Mechanicsburg, PA
University of Pittsburgh
  • BSN to DNP: Family (Individual Across the Lifespan)
  • MSN to DNP: Family (individual Across the Lifespan) Hybrid
Pittsburgh, PA

South Carolina

Anderson University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Greenville, SC

Tennessee

East Tennessee State University
  • BSN to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
  • MSN to DNP: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Hybrid
Johnson City, TN
The University of Tennessee Health Science Center- Memphis
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Memphis, TN

Texas

Baylor University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner
Dallas, TX
Texas A&M University-Commerce
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Commerce, TX
Texas Christian University
  • BSN to DNP Family Nurse Practitioner
Fort Worth, TX
Texas Tech University
  • BSN to DNP Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Lubbock, TX

Utah

Weber State University
  • Post BSN to DNP Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Ogden, UT

Washington

Gonzaga University
  • Post Baccalaureate DNP Family Nurse Practitioner
Spokane, WA
University of Washington
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Seattle, WA
Washington State University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Pullman, WA
Washington State University Vancouver
  • Post-Master's DNP Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Vancouver, WA

Washington, DC

The George Washington University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner (Post-BSN opportunity)
Washington, DC

West Virginia

Shepherd University
  • Family Nurse Practitioner Hybrid
Shepherdstown, WV

Are we missing your school's nurse practitioner program or need to update any of the information listed? Please contact us.