The Doctor of Nursing Practice is a terminal professional practice degree. The goal of the University of Nevada, Reno at the Orvis School of Nursing (O.S.N.), D.N.P. program is to prepare nurses to assume leadership roles in clinical practice, administration, clinical teaching, and clinical research. The D.N.P. differs from the Ph.D. in Nursing or Doctor of Nursing Science degrees, in that the DNP does not attempt to create new knowledge, but rather takes current evidence based practice and translates the literature into practice by emphasizing advanced clinical practice, implementation of best practices, and evaluation of practice and care delivery models rather than individually initiated research.

The O.S.N. D.N.P. program prepares graduates for advanced clinical practice and leadership roles to serve the healthcare needs of the people of Nevada, the nation, and the professional community. D.N.P. graduates are equipped to assume a wide range of leadership roles in both direct and indirect healthcare settings. D.N.P. graduates may function as specialists in their advanced practice clinical roles, as nursing faculty, or as healthcare executives, program and policy analysts.