Doctor of Nursing Practice, Anesthesia

Sheryl Steadman, Dean

James Stimpson, Program Director

Art Shimata, Assistant Director

Doctor of Nursing Practice, Anesthesia Courses


The mission of the Doctor of Nursing Practice program at Westminster College is to provide an academic environment which allows nurse anesthesia students to master the intellectual and technical skills required to become competent in the safe administration of anesthesia. The program accomplishes this by admitting a select group of experienced, graduate level nurses and then providing them with the highest level of didactic instruction, anesthesia simulation, and clinical site experiences. Our nurse anesthesia graduates develop life-long critical thinking skills and the professionalism needed to become compassionate, patient-centered anesthesia providers.We are committed to upholding the standards set forth by the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) and the Council on Accreditation (COA) to produce skilled nurse anesthetists who are qualified to sit for the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) Examination. By this educational endeavor, it is the mission of the DNPa program at Westminster College to contribute to filling the urban and rural community needs for anesthesia providers.

Program Outcomes

A graduate of the DNPa program:

  • Evaluates delivery of a safe anesthetic with vigilant protection of the patient and prevention of complications.
  • Develops individualized perianesthetic care throughout anesthetic continuum to patients of all ages and physical conditions.
  • Integrates skill and knowledge necessary to function as a resource person for airway and ventilator management of patients in a variety of settings.
  • Utilizes critical thinking, decision making, and the application of sound principles and evidence-based research in practice.
  • Applies mastery of anesthesia concepts and skills by passing the NBCRNA certification examination.
  • Develops verbal, nonverbal, and written communication necessary to influence patient care.
  • Integrates professional attributes necessary to accept responsibility and accountability of a new anesthesia practice.
  • Proposes politically active advancements in nurse anesthesia.

Progression in the Program

The student must:

  • Receive a grade of 82% or higher in all DNPa courses.
  • Maintain a current, unencumbered RN license .
  • Complete the program within four years of initial admission date.
  • Complete doctoral level project by the deadline assigned by course faculty.
  • Maintain a background check free of arrest and/or criminal incidents. Report any of criminal arrests and/or criminal incidents within 24 hours to the Program Director.
  • Maintain a negative drug screen. Report any change or prescribed use of mind-altering substances, including narcotics, within 24 hours to the Program Director.
  • Remain in good standing at clinical sites.

Graduation Requirements

To be eligible for a doctoral degree, students must satisfy the following conditions:

  • Meet all credit hour and other course requirements.
  • Be enrolled at Westminster College during the semester in which they wish to graduate.
  • Earn a grade of 82% or higher in all DNPa courses.
  • Earn an average clinical score greater than 3.0 on daily and term evaluations.

Note: Only upper-level coursework may be applied toward degree requirements.Please note that the program requires that students must earn a grade of B (82%) or higher in all program courses to qualify for graduation, regardless of their cumulative GPA. The final responsibility for being informed about, and adhering to, graduation requirements rests with the individual. Continued communication with the faculty advisor is recommended.

Program Requirements

A minimum of 90 credit hours is required for graduation. Clinical cases must include all minimum numbers as directed by the Council on Accreditation. Please see the DNPa Student Handbook for specific information regarding clinical cases.

Requirement Description Credits Prerequisites
I. Required Courses 32  
DNP 711 Biological Systems, Homeostasis, & Pathogenesis 
DNP 713 Healthcare Improvement
DNP 727 Legal Concerns
DNP 731 Advanced Health Assessment
DNP 732 Gross Anatomy
DNP 733 Research Methods
DNP 734 Chemistry and Physics
DNP 811 Advanced Physiology & Pathophysiology
DNP 812 Advanced Pharmacology I
DNP 813 Anesthesia Principles I
DNP 814 Anesthesia Simulation I
DNP 821 Advanced Physiology & Pathophysiology II
DNP 822 Advanced Pharmacology II
DNP 823 Anesthesia Principles II
DNP 824 Advanced Anesthesia Simulation
DNP 831 Anesthesia Seminar I
DNP 832 Advanced Anesthesia Principles I
DNP 833 Clinical Practicum I
DNP 911 Anesthesia Seminar II
DNP 912 Advanced Anesthesia Principles II
DNP 914 Clinical Practicum III
DNP 921 Anesthesia Seminar III
DNP 922 Advanced Anesthesia Principles III
DNP 924 Clinical Practicum III
DNP 931 Anesthesia Seminar IV
DNP 932 Advanced Anesthesia Principles IV
DNP 934 Clinical Practicum IV
Total Hours for the Program 90  

Recommended Plan of Study

  Summer Semester   Fall Semester   Spring Semester  
Year 1 DNP 711
DNP 712
DNP 713
DNP 714
DNP 721
DNP 722
DNP 723
DNP 724
DNP 727
DNP 731
DNP 732
DNP 733
DNP 734
Year 2 DNP 811
DNP 812
DNP 813
DNP 814
DNP 821
DNP 822
DNP 823
DNP 824
DNP 831
DNP 832
DNP 833
Year 3 DNP 911
DNP 912
DNP 913
DNP 914
DNP 921
DNP 922
DNP 923
DNP 924
DNP 931
DNP 932
DNP 933
DNP 934