Doctor of Nursing Science (DNS)

Nursing is considered a science and nurses deal with scientific issues on a daily basis. The doctor of nursing science (DNS) degree focuses on the scientific side of nursing, including economics and statistics. The purpose of a DNS program is to provide nurses with a rigorous curriculum to prepare them for improvement of the health of the general population.

Job Duties and Career Opportunities for DNS Graduates

Doctor of nursing science graduates can work in an array of areas. These include advanced clinical practice, nurse consultant, nursing administration, clinical research, and nursing education. Traditionally, doctorate prepared nurses work for universities and nursing schools, teaching students. The DNS nurse works for federal and state agencies, private organizations, research institutes, and hospitals.

Doctor of Nursing Science Educational Requirements

In order to gain acceptance to a DNS nursing program, you must first hold a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree or Master degree in a related field. The DNS program is anywhere from three to five years long, depending on your status of attendance. Most programs grant the student one full year to complete a doctoral project.

Courses of Study of a Doctor of Nursing Science Program

DNS program students take courses such as budgeting, business processes, staffing, health outcomes measurement, health care delivery, and information technology. Other classes focus on guiding and educating nursing staff, providing leadership and knowledge, assessing the weaknesses in the field of nursing so that they can be addressed with appropriate solutions.

The DNS degree differs from the Ph. D and DNP degree in many ways. The Ph. D program focuses on research, and the DNS program focuses on health care administration and policy. Also, the DNP program is designed for advanced practice nurses who diagnose and treat medical illnesses.

DNS Healthcare Professional Salaries

The salary of a DNS graduate will depend on area of practice, place of employment, location of worksite, and years of experience. Most web sources report that nurses who hold a doctorate of nursing science degree earn from $85,000 to $130,000 annually.


ANA (2013):
BLS (2013):
Nurse.Org (2013):

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