Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

The Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing degree at The University of Southern Mississippi prepares scholars with a leadership focus to contribute to the science, practice, and profession of nursing through systematic research inquiry and theory development. Our program is designed to prepare scholars for research, academic careers, and leadership positions in universities or health related organizations. We embrace a student-centered approach that is 100% Online, and the use of technologies facilitates the virtual residency by way of scholarly engagement and dialogue among students and faculty. Students work closely with faculty mentors who guide and oversee their educational program from admission through completion of degree requirements, all online.


The PhD program offers two tracks 100% Online: Post-Masters and BSN to PhD. The Post-Masters track requires 48 hours credits during a minimum of 24-30 months of full-time study. The BSN to PhD track requires 60 hours credit during a minimum of 36-42 months of full-time study. Both full-time and part-time study is available.


Emphasis Areas with Sample Course Sequencing:


Admission Requirements:

  • Completed application to The University of Southern Mississippi Graduate School and College of Nursing.
  • Graduate from a baccalaureate or master's program accredited by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA for the most recent nursing degree.
  • Completion of the Graduate Record Examination (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing sections).
  • An unencumbered registered nurse (RN) license. 
  • Curriculum vitae or professional résumé.
  • Submission of three (3) letters of reference from individuals (doctoral level nursing individuals preferred ) familiar with the applicant's academic/professional background and experience in nursing practice, specifying in detail the applicant's capability for doctoral study.
  • Cover letter of introduction and a personal statement of research interests submitted with application.
  • An interview (online or via telephone).
  • Proof of current CPR certification, criminal background check, hepatitis, Tdap, and MMR immunizations, and TB test or titer.
  • TOEFL or IELTS if International applicant.