Grand Canyon University

Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership


3300 W Camelback Rd

Phoenix, AZ 85017

United States



Program Information

Degrees Offered:

Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership

Format: Online

Program Description:

Pursue a DNP in Educational Leadership to Improve Patient Outcomes

The Doctor of Nursing Practice degree with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership consists of the full DNP program and offers the opportunity to take three additional courses that focus on the role of the educator. These courses emphasize teaching strategies, curriculum development and student assessments. Becoming an education-oriented nurse leader will improve the future of healthcare delivery by inspiring and preparing the next generation of nurses.

This DNP in Educational Leadership empowers graduates to initiate evidence-based practice strategies that enhance health care and improve patient outcomes. Offered by the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions, the DNP with an emphasis in educational leadership emphasizes teaching strategies, curriculum development, student assessments and also prepares you to collaborate with other disciplines in analyzing and conducting research to improve healthcare outcomes.

The DNP with an emphasis in educational leadership is ideal for MSN-prepared nurses who wish to progress to the pinnacle of their profession. Students gain advanced knowledge in many core competencies like leadership, informatics, patient outcomes, sustainable change and scientific underpinnings as they explore nursing science and health care research. The synthesis and application of advanced knowledge from evidence-based principles is essential in advancing education and obtaining optimal patient outcomes.

As a private Christian university, GCU encourages students to apply the Christian worldview and its concept of leadership. Nurse leaders benefit from examining values-based worldviews and their influence on patient care across different cultures.

For more information on the accreditation of nursing programs and other university approvals, please visit our University Accreditation and Regulations page.

Serve in a Clinical or Academic Setting at the Highest Level

GCU seeks to graduate nurse leaders who possess high-level knowledge applicable to a clinical or academic setting. Graduates will be prepared to serve as ethical, forward-thinking advocates for their profession. Students are encouraged to keep their professional responsibility in mind as both nurses and educators to further the common good. The program encourages participants to work toward better health care systems and processes, which in turn improve the health and wellbeing of patient populations.
Learn to Shape Health Care Systems With a DNP in Educational Leadership

Completion of the full DNP program with added concepts and competencies of educational leadership delivers knowledge and skillsets that are both broad in scope and in-depth in nature. Courses such as Curriculum Design and Assessment, Facilitation of Learning in Nursing Education and Health Care Informatics enhance the nurse leader’s role as an educator in the following areas:

    The use of information technology to evaluate care systems, outcomes of care and programs of care in light of industry standards and ethical, regulatory and legal principles
    The selection of content and instructional strategies based on diverse student needs
    Instructional strategies and methods grounded in evidence-based practice that facilitate learning
    Designing, evaluating and improving educational programs with a focus on the regulatory and accrediting body requirements

For completion of the practice immersion hours and the Direct Practice Improvement (DPI) project, students must have access to a clinical site. Students must additionally complete practicum hours during three education-specific courses. These practicum hours may be completed at an academic or clinical site. Practicum hours are not applied toward the DPI project and are in addition to the required immersion hours. A university counselor or student services counselor can provide more information.

Pursue an Education-Focused Career in Health Care by Earning Your DNP in Educational Leadership

Graduates with a doctorate in nursing practice with an emphasis in educational leadership possess the advanced knowledge and clinical skills necessary to successfully lead nursing teams, inspire positive change in health care organizations and improve patient outcomes. A Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership may prepare graduates to become nurse education leaders who design and implement programs for workforce development, centers for nursing excellence and nursing education partnerships and academic institutions.

Some graduates with a DNP with an emphasis in educational leadership may transition to academic settings. Graduates may work directly with the next generation of nurse leaders or inspire excellence from a nursing education administration position.

Alumni Doctoral Degree Scholarship
Now Available

GCU alumni enrolling in a doctoral program for the first time may be eligible for a $2,000 scholarship.§

§ MOU-Alumni 2000 Doctoral-Aug2023: The Alumni Scholarship for Doctoral Programs is only valid for those applicants who submit a complete application and begin a Doctoral program in August 2023. This scholarship cannot be used in conjunction with any other GCU scholarship or awards and only applies to online and evening programs. Please speak to a university counselor for complete details.


North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

Facts & Figures

Classification: Master's College or University I

Loans Offered: Perkins Loan, Stafford Student Loans, PLUS Loans, Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership (LEAP) State Grant, Arizona Post-Secondary Education Voucher Program State Grant, Federal Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

Locale: Large City

Size & Settings: 0-999

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