Requirements for Completion of an Online DNP-FNP Program

Undertaking an online Doctorate of Nursing Practice—Family Nursing Practitioner program is a great option, especially if you intend to become a reputable family nurse practitioner. The program teaches you how to diagnose and manage chronic diseases across various patient lifespans effectively.

According to a recent American Association of Nurse Practitioners report, over 166 online DNP-FNP programs are offered nationally, with 36 offering their coursework exclusively online. Here is an overview of the requirements you must satisfy to successfully complete the program’s curriculum.

1. Completion of Coursework

The DNP-FNP program enrollees are expected to complete the DNP-FNP program courses. These DNP-level sample courses focus on healthcare quality improvement, health informatics, organizational management, and effective leadership.

The Family Nursing Practitioner specialty courses, on their part, include advanced healthcare for adults, advanced care for infants and children, population health, and disease prevention. The ideal thing about this program is that it allows you to apply for credits from your previous bachelor’s or master’s program toward the DNP-FNP certificate requirements.

2. Capstone Requirement

You must complete your nursing capstone project to earn your Doctorate of Nursing Practice—Family Nursing Practitioner program. In simple terms, a DNP-FNP capstone project is an original scholarly work representing the culmination of your studies.

Upon completing your project, you must also defend the thesis in front of your project team. Thus, you might be required to travel to your school campus. Some possible projects you can work on in the project include pilot study, program evaluation, quality improvement, or consulting projects.

3. Clinical Practicum Hours

As a DNP-FNP program student, you must complete the set doctoral-level and FNP-level clinical practicum hours to be eligible for natural certification and state licensure as a family nursing practitioner. Most online schools require you to fulfil a minimum of 500 DNP clinical practicum hours and between 500 to 650 FNP clinical specialty hours, which translates to at least 1,000 clinical hours.

Thus, you’ll need to find a clinical placement in a healthcare facility near your locality to complete your clinical practicum hours to qualify for the Doctorate of Nursing Practice. Ensure you fully understand the clinical practicum hours requirement and how your school handles the placements before enrolling in the program.

4. Licensure Requirements

You need to apply for national certification from the accredited certifying boards, such as ANCC and AANPCB, to begin your career as a fully-fledged family nurse practitioner. Nevertheless, you’ll need to explore the different certification bodies, pass the certifying exam, and be a holder of a bachelor’s or get a master’s of nursing to be certified.

In addition, the certifying body will ask you to provide your unencumbered RN license and complete your recertification process for your national certifications. Consequently, the certifying board will review your application and eligibility before offering you a license to practice your trade.


Completing a DNP FNP programs online is not a walk in the park because it is rigorous, expensive, and time-consuming. Nevertheless, enrolling in the program allows you to become a clinical scholar nurse specializing in family care, offering you a chance to advance your career.


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