Doctor of nursing practice project: Key challenges and possible solutions

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: To thoughtfully and strategically embed the updated Essentials into Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) curricula, it is important to understand the current landscape of the DNP project. Method: This discussion focuses on DNP project processes, providing a summary of the core challenges and solutions for project design, implementation and evaluation stages. Findings: Main challenges include: Difficulty defining a practice gap or absent training in protocol development for quality improvement (QI) projects (design stage); difficulty identifying and accessing project sites or practice mentors and limited academic faculty support (implementation stage); and a lack of common criteria for DNP project evaluation or unclear choices and use of QI measurement tools (evaluation stage). Scholarly Writing, Faculty Preparation, and Sustainability were overarching challenges hindering successful completion of DNP projects. Possible solutions included training and support for faculty, toolkits and practical strategies to support planning and organization. Conclusion: The DNP, as an evolving degree, brings its own set of challenges for students, academic and clinical settings, faculty and administrators. Developing effective partnership of students, faculty, and healthcare systems is a key solution in helping students develop and demonstrate DNP competencies, and nursing institutions and leadership should explore further ways to fortify these partnerships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-57
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Professional Nursing
StatePublished - Jul 1 2022


  • DNP project
  • Doctor of nursing practice
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Quality improvement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Doctor of nursing practice project: Key challenges and possible solutions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this