Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

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For more than three decades, the University of Maryland School of Nursing's PhD program has prepared scholars and researchers to tackle the greatest challenges facing health care.

Overview

As a PhD student at UMSON, you'll conduct important research that not only builds a foundation for your career, but also contributes to the advancement of nursing science. You'll study under accomplished faculty members from UMSON's organized research centers while taking full advantage of our state-of-the-art health sciences campus. The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) is the state's public health, law, and human services university devoted to excellence in professional education, research, patient care, and public service.

You're an ideal candidate for the PhD program if you are a bachelor's or master's prepared nurse who wants a research career focused on some of the most important disciplines, topics, and trends, including:

  • Aging Populations
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Health Systems Outcomes
  • Implementation Science
  • Occupational Health
  • Pain and Symptom Science
  • Palliative and End-of-Life Care

The UMSON PhD program was initiated in 1979 as the 16th doctoral nursing program in the nation. Every student is carefully chosen and matched to the faculty member who can offer the greatest opportunity to succeed in developing his or her research program. As a graduate, you will join a thriving group of alumni—many of whom hold key leadership positions in academia, research, and administration across the country. 

Program Details

Post-Master's Entry

For master's prepared students, you will complete core courses to build upon your existing foundation in research methods and theory. You will choose a research area based on your individual interests and career goals, building domain expertise and research skills. Whether you decide on the part-time or full-time program, you'll complete coursework, research experience, supporting electives, and dissertation research. 

Post-Baccalaureate Entry

There are two options for students entering the doctoral program with a baccalaureate degree. If you are a current UMSON student, the first (MS to PHD) program option allows you to complete graduate courses depending on the master's specialty you choose and earn a Master of Science degree while proceeding with PhD classes. You can complete the program in four to five years of full-time study taking fewer classes than if you pursued a master's degree and PhD degree separately. You can apply to the PhD program at the end of the first year of full-time master's study. 

If you have a baccalaureate degree in nursing and desire a research career, the second (Post-BSN to PhD no master's) program option allows you to complete one year of core graduate courses and research rotations. Then you take the post-master's PhD courses, completing a minimum of 78 credits. No Master of Science degree is awarded. 

Program Inquires

University of Maryland School of Nursing
PhD Program
655 W. Lombard Street, Room 516
Baltimore, MD 21201-1579

Phone: 410-706-3147
Email:  NursePhD@son.umaryland.edu

Admissions Requirements

As an applicant to the PhD program, you must have/provide:

Post-Master's

  • A master's degree with a major in nursing from an ACEN- (formally known as NLNAC) or CCNE-accredited college or university, or an equivalent degree from a comparable foreign university. A Master's in Public Health from an accredited university may also be considered. International applicants must provide one official transcript in English and one native language transcript or mark sheets from each college or university attended. Each set of documents must list subjects studied or marks received and rank in class or division.
  • A cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for all previous coursework (baccalaureate, master's, and any subsequent coursework)
  • Statement of goals or objectives with clear research interests
  • Professional vitae or current résumé
  • Evidence of personal and professional qualifications from three doctorally prepared professionals familiar with the applicant's ability, work experience, contributions to nursing, and potential to success in the PhD program
  • Verification of an active licensure for the practice of nursing in at least one state in the U.S. or in a foreign country
  • Official scores on the aptitute portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Test must have been taken within five years of application date. 
  • International students must provide official Test of English as a Foreign Lanugage (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores

Post-Baccalaureate

MS to PhD

As an applicant to the MS to PhD program, you must be currently enrolled in UMSON's master's program. Also, you must have/provide: 

  • Baccalaureate degree with a major in nursing from an ACEN- (formally known as NLNAC) or CCNE-accredited college or university, or an equivalent degree from a comparable foreign university
  • A cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for all previous coursework
  • Statement of goals or objectives with clear research interests
  • Professional vitae or current résumé
  • Evidence of personal and professional qualifications from three doctorally prepared professionals familiar with the applicant's ability, work experience, contributions to nursing, and potential to success in the PhD program
  • Verification of an active licensure for the practice of nursing in at least one state in the U.S. or in a foreign country
  • Official scores on the aptitute portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Test must have been taken within five years of application date. 

Post-BSN to PhD

As an applicant to the Post-BSN to PhD entry option without a master's degree, you must be committed to a research career. Thus, a minimum number of years of clinical experience is not required. You must have/provide:

  • A baccalaureate degree with a major in nursing from an ACEN- (formally known as NLNAC) or CCNE-accredited college or university, or an equivalent degree from a comparable foreign university. A Master's in Public Health from an accredited university may also be considered. International applicants must provide one official transcript in English and one native language transcript or mark sheets from each college or university attended. Each set of documents must list subjects studied or marks received and rank in class or division.
  • A cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for all previous coursework
  • Statement of goals or objectives with clear research interests
  • Professional vitae or current résumé
  • Evidence of personal and professional qualifications from three doctorally prepared professionals familiar with the applicant's ability, work experience, contributions to nursing, and potential to success in the PhD program
  • Verification of an active licensure for the practice of nursing in at least one state in the U.S. or in a foreign country
  • Official scores on the aptitute portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Test must have been taken within five years of application date. 
  • International students must provide official Test of English as a Foreign Lanugage (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores

What You'll Do

What You'll Do

After graduating from the PhD program, you'll be prepared to:

  • Design, conduct, analyze, and disseminate research findings to expand knowledge in nursing and related disciplines
  • Initiate, facilitate, and participate in interdisciplinary research with nurses and scholars from related disciplines
  • Assume leadership roles in academic and health care settings