Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nurse Anesthesia

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The purpose of the Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nurse Anesthesia degree program is to prepare baccalaureate registered nurses for the highest level of advanced nursing practice with a specialization in nurse anesthesia to provide safe and equitable patient-centered care.

The DNP-NA program develops leaders and scholars who transform systems of care by improving the quality of care and patient outcomes in various healthcare settings. This mission is achieved through the creation of an environment that supports professional socialization, embraces diverse cultures and learning styles, recognizes achievement and promotes excellence while exemplifying the mission and traditions of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady.

In addition to receiving grant funding for clinical residency, FranU’s DNP nurse anesthesia students have access to state-of-the-art equipment and annually attend Maverick Medical Education workshops hosted by the program. Our comprehensive curriculum and hands-on learning opportunities equip students with the skills needed to practice as a CRNA.

School of Nursing
Nurse Anesthetists


DNP-NA degree holders can become certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNA) through the NCE exam and work as leaders in a variety of healthcare settings or in faculty positions at universities.

DNP-NA Program Highlights

  • 36-month DNP program - Our 100 credit hour, 36-month program connects students with 19 clinical site partners and allows them to gain 2,500 hours of clinical experience, providing excellent preparation for clinical practice and the National Certification Exam (NCE).

  • Blended curriculum - Students in the DNP nurse anesthesia program will take a blend of online and in-person courses. This means added flexibility for working RNs who want to continue their career during the first eight months of the program.

  • GRE optional - Applicants may optionally submit GRE scores, as results are not required for admission to the program.

  • DNP Scholarly Project - During ANES 7800, students will complete a project that demonstrates their ability to identify a practice or system related problem, synthesize and critically appraise the evidence related to addressing the problem, negotiate within the system to implement sustainable evidence-based change and systematically measure the results of the related change initiative.

  • February to July admission window - The admission cycle for the DNP-NA program is open annually from February 1st to July 1st, with interviews and admissions decisions taking place in July/August.

  • In-person interview - Interviews will take place in-person at FranU between July 22-26 and July 29-August 2.

  • Grant funding - The graduating class of 2023 was awarded over $115,000 in grants that were applied to clinical residency.

Program Features

DNP-Nurse Anesthesia Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the nurse anesthesia doctorate program, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Baccalaureate or higher degree in nursing from a college or university fully accredited by a recognized accrediting agency of the U.S. Department of Education.

  • Cumulative weighted grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale; all attempted courses prior to admission (graduate and undergraduate) will be factored into the cumulative grade point average calculation

  • Minimum of 1-year full-time recent experience as a registered nurse in an adult critical care unit (2 years recommended)

  • Current, unencumbered license to practice as a registered nurse (RN) in any state with eligibility for licensure in Louisiana

  • Current Basic Life Support (BLS) and Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) certifications

  • Completion of application requirements by July 1st as stated in the graduate application instructions

  • Submission of three professional letters of recommendation (one from current immediate supervisor, one from a peer)

  • Ability to meet and comply with the DNP-NA Core Performance Standards

  • CCRN certification required for reapplication

Additional information can be found in our Application FAQs

Candidates who satisfactorily meet these criteria may be invited for an evaluated interview. Applicants invited for an interview will be required to pay a $70 fee to complete the Casper open-response situational judgment test.

Note: Recent experience is defined as within the previous two calendar years; critical care experience in other areas (e.g., PICU, NICU) may be considered provided the applicant demonstrates competence with managing unstable patients, invasive monitoring, ventilator management, and critical care pharmacology.

View interview and decision FAQs or EI assessment FAQs.

English Proficiency Requirement

In addition to meeting all other applicable requirements for admission, non-native speakers of English must demonstrate sufficient English language proficiency. This can be demonstrated by submitting any one of the following: an SAT verbal/critical reading score of at least 430; an ACT English subtest score of at least 18; a Duolingo English Test score of at least 105; an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test score of at least 6.5; or a TOEFL iBT (internet-based test) score of 79 or paper-based test with sub scores each being 20 or higher.

Other factors considered for admission to the program

  • Casper open-response situational judgment test results

  • Science grade point average

  • Grade point average from the last 60 hours of coursework

  • Clinical knowledge evaluation

  • CCRN certification status

  • GRE scores

Last Admission Cycle DNP-NA Statistics

  • 267 Applications received

  • 154 Interviews offered

  • 40 Accepted

  • 3.48 Average overall grade point average for those accepted

  • 3.55 Average science grade point average for those accepted

View admitted student FAQs.

Program Goals

As a premier advanced practice nursing educational program, the nurse anesthesia program at FranU will meet the following goals:

  1. Adequately prepare graduates to pass the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists National Certification Exam.

  2. Admit, retain and graduate students who have the ability to benefit from a nurse anesthesia education.

  3. Graduate students who are prepared to enter into nurse anesthesia practice as a DNP-prepared advanced practice registered nurse (APRN).

Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs)

1. Integrate nursing science, advanced levels of systems thinking and accountability in designing, delivering and evaluating evidence-based practice to improve healthcare quality.

2. Demonstrate leadership by applying principles of organizational and systems theory to envision, design, evaluate and manage health organizational systems.

3. Translate research and generate evidence to guide improvements in practice and outcomes of care.

4. Incorporate healthcare information systems and patient care technologies to improve and transform programs of care and care systems.

5. Influence healthcare systems through the design, implementation and evaluation of healthcare policies.

6. Collaborate interprofessionally in the development and implementation of practice models, peer review, practice guidelines, healthcare policy, standards of care and scholarly projects.

7. Generate, implement and evaluate health promotion/disease prevention interventions and strategies to address gaps in the care of individuals and populations.

8. Apply critical thinking and requisite knowledge to provide safe, ethical, evidence-based anesthesia care services to culturally-diverse individuals across the lifespan.

View DNP-NA program FAQs.

Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nurse Anesthesia FAQ

Program Resources

Document TitleTypeFile Size
Document Title: DNPNA ChecklistType: pdfFile Size: 145.286 KBDownload
Document Title: DNPNA - Reference FormType: pdfFile Size: 610.273 KBDownload
Document Title: DNPNA Core Performance Standards 2018Type: pdfFile Size: 566.31 KBDownload
Document Title: DNPNA Certification Licensure MembershipType: pdfFile Size: 268.476 KBDownload
Document Title: DNPNA Record Of Critical CareType: pdfFile Size: 313.076 KBDownload

Graduate Handbook

Document TitleTypeFile Size
Document Title: Doctor of Nursing Practice Nurse Anesthesia Degree Program Handbook 2023-2024Type: pdfFile Size: 656.437 KBDownload

Financial Assistance

Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University has financial aid counselors available to assist students with the financial aid process. All students are encouraged to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form available at

SemesterCredit HoursTuition/FeesCourse FeesTotal
19$ 5,825.00$ 6,759.25
26$ 4,110.00$ 4,965.50
318$ 15,738.35$ 16,908.85
418$ 16,977.75$ 729.00$ 18,877.25
510$ 9,018.95$ 9,979.45
612$ 11,008.65$ 12,021.65
711$ 10,943.35$250.00$ 12,180.10
87$ 6,963.95$ 7,845.70
99$ 8,953.65$ 250.00$ 10,137.90
*Total100$ 89,539.65$ 1,229.00$ 99,675.65

*Tuition costs do not include textbooks or any additional costs associated with this program.

Graduation Rate/Certification Pass Rate

The DNP-NA doctoral class of 2023 had a 92% first-time pass rate and a 100% second-time pass rate on the NBCRNA NCE. Since the August 2005 inception of the Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia (MSNA) program at Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University, there have been 449 graduates. Of these graduates, 424 passed the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) National Certification Exam (NCE) on the first attempt 94.4% and 99.8% of all FranU graduates have passed the NCE. The attrition rate for the class of 2023 was 32% as defined by the COA, which requires reporting all students who began the program vs those who ultimately graduate, regardless of the reason for withdrawal or dismissal.

Nurse Anesthesia Program Graduation and Attrition Rates 2007-2023.pdf

Nurse Anesthesia Program NCE Pass Rate 2007-2023.pdf

Employment Rate/Outlook

Employers consistently rate the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University MSNA and DNP-NA graduates as excellent practitioners with a broad knowledge base who demonstrate competency in administering anesthesia in all specialty areas. Additionally, graduates indicate the program prepared them to function as competent anesthesia providers. Alumni of Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University’s nurse anesthesia program serve in leadership roles for state associations, and several hold positions within the program as faculty. The employment rate as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist for the Class of 2022 is 100% at six months post-graduation, and 100% of the class of 2023 had employment offers six months pre-graduation.

Grants and Scholarships

HRSA Grant

Grant For several years the Program has applied for and received funding through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Nurse Anesthetist Traineeship (NAT) grant program. The NAT Grants are awarded to accredited institutions that educate registered nurses to become nurse anesthetists; recipient institutions, in turn, disburse funds to students in the form of traineeship support.

In 2023 the program was awarded a four-year HRSA NAT Grant. The program utilizes HRSA NAT grant funding to allow for expanded clinical rotations and experiences. The objectives of the grant are to (1) increase the number of graduating CRNAs prepared to work in designated MUA/P, HPSA, rural and/or urban areas; (2) reduce health disparities by preparing students to treat and manage patients with substance use disorders and to examine social determinants of substance abuse; (3) reduce health inequities by preparing students to provide anesthesia obstetric services to diverse patient populations; and (4) increase the diversity of DNP-NA students to better align with the US National Census. All funding from the grant is awarded to DNP-NA students as a stipend to offset the expenses incurred by students in the clinical setting.

FMOL Sisters Graduate Scholarship

In 2018, the DNP-NA program was awarded the FMOL Sisters Graduate Scholarship. In 2021, the program was once again awarded the FMOL Sisters Graduate Scholarship for an additional three years. The program will receive $80,000 annually from this scholarship. The program utilizes these scholarships to allow for expanded clinical rotations in rural and underserved areas where students are supervised by practitioners seasoned in the delivery of rural health care. Such rural clinical rotations expose the student learner to the importance of rural health care access, potentially increasing the number of graduates that go on to practice in rural and underserved areas. The scholarship money is awarded directly to the DNP-NA student. By offering financial assistance via grant funding, the expenses incurred by the student for rural clinical education and experiences can be partially offset.

Endowment Funding

Additionally, program administration and faculty have been granted endowments, which provide students with state-of-the-art simulation equipment and experiences. The Program hosts an annual regional anesthesia workshop by Maverick Medical Education, which offers the students hands-on instruction in ultrasound-guided peripheral nerve blockade and POCUS. The DNP-NA program is also home to simulation equipment purchased through endowments, including Intelligent Ultrasound's, Hi-fidelity ultrasound simulators for transesophageal (TEE) and transthoracic echocardiography (TTE), ORSIM, a portable virtual bronchoscope trainer, and ScanNav Anatomy Peripheral Nerve Block Trainer.

Accreditation Information

Nurse Anesthesia Program Accreditation

Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University's nurse anesthesia DNP program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA), 10275 W. Higgins Rd., Suite 906, Rosemont, IL 60018-5603 and can be reached at 224-275-9130, via the web at or by email: The program received ten years of continued accreditation in October of 2018 and is scheduled for its next consideration for continued accreditation in Fall 2028. See the list of educational programs accredited by the COA.

Regional Accreditation

Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate, baccalaureate, master’s and doctorate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University.

State Board of Nursing Accreditation

The Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nurse Anesthesia program is fully approved by the Louisiana State Board of Nursing at 17373 Perkins Road, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70810, (225) 755-7500.


Requirements for professional licensure and certifications can vary by state and can change without notice. All students should consult the state licensing body in the state in which they reside to be licensed to ensure that the degree they earn will meet requirements for licensure in that state.

Non-Discrimination Statement

The University assures free and equal access for all qualified persons without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, pregnancy status or military status in the admission to, participation in or employment of its programs and activities. The University will provide reasonable accommodations for students with learning, emotional or physical disabilities. Students wishing to self-identify are required to contact the Office of Student Affairs. If a student believes that he or she has been discriminated against on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, pregnancy status or military status, that student should report the matter to the Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, who will seek to assist the student with the resolution of the complaint as described in the Student Complaint and Grievance Procedure.


Curriculum Notes:

Didactic courses = 1 credit hour = 15 contact hours
Clinical courses = 1 credit hour = 120 contact hours
Lab course = 1 credit hour = 45 contact hours