Doctor of Philosophy Degree (Ph.D.) in Nursing


The Ph.D. in Nursing prepares nurse leaders to: 1) design and conduct research that contributes to the advancement of nursing science and global health; 2) conduct culturally sensitive research to guide nursing practice; 3) incorporate research outcomes to formulate policies pertinent to nursing and global health; and 4) disseminate innovative and creative strategies to improve health through nursing research, practice, and education.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the general requirements for admission to doctoral study at The University of Texas at Tyler, the following criteria must be met for entry into the program:

  1. A baccalaureate or master's degree in nursing from a college or university approved by a recognized national accrediting body.
  2. Submission of satisfactory Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores taken within the last five years.
  3. A current license to practice professional nursing.
  4. International applicants will be evaluated for equivalency on criteria 1-3.
  5. International students must score a minimum of 550 (paper), 213 (computer), or 79 (internet-based) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). For more information on International applications, please see the general graduate section of this catalog.
  6. A 3-5 page paper linking professional goals and research interests to health issues emphasized in this program.
  7. Three academic and/or professional letters of reference.

Consideration for admission to the PhD in Nursing program will also be given to one or more of the following: the applicant’s demonstrated commitment to his or her chosen field of study, socioeconomic background, first generation college graduate, multilingual proficiency, geographic region of residence, and level of responsibility in other matters including extracurricular activities, employment, community, service, and family responsibilities.

Degree Requirements

This degree program is delivered online. Students are required to attend an orientation on the UT Tyler campus prior to beginning coursework and an annual summer workshop. Students may be required to be present for other special activities throughout their program of study (e.g. dissertation defense).

  1. Minimum Credit Hours (60 hrs.)
    1. Required Courses - 39 hrs.
    2. Cognates - 9 hrs.
    3. Dissertation - 12 hrs.
  2. Special degree requirements (for details on university doctoral requirements, see the general graduate section of this catalog and the Graduate Nursing Handbook available on the College of Nursing Graduate Programs website)
    1. The Proficiency Examination is taken after the student has completed a significant portion, if not all, coursework. Students may not advance to candidacy or register for dissertation hours until all coursework is completed and all portions of the Proficiency Examination have been passed satisfactorily.
    2. Students have a maximum of nine years to complete the program. Students will have five years to complete the program after entering candidacy. Students unable to complete the program within the designated time limits must file for an extension.
    3. A dissertation of original research contributing to the body of knowledge in nursing will be required. Students must enroll for dissertation hours during each long semester while in the dissertation process. A minimum of 12 hours of dissertation credit is required.
    4. Students must meet all doctoral degree requirements of the University.
  3. Transfer work: Students may transfer up to twelve hours of coursework with the approval of their advisor and the Doctoral Program Director. Students will be responsible for providing necessary documentation of course equivalency.

Below is a typical outline of program progression for a full-time student.

Year 1

Summer (1)

NURS 6341Scholarship of Writing for the PhD


NURS 6310Philosophy of Science

NURS 6342Scholarship in Nursing

NURS 6320Data Management


NURS 6312Theory Construction and Evaluation

NURS 6322Advanced Statistics


Summer (2)

NURS 6333Qualitative Research Designs & Methods

NURS 6324Advanced Multivariate Statistics

Year 2


NURS 6330Quantitative Research Designs & Methods

NURS 6350Research in Transcultural Health



NURS 6352Health Care Policy Development

NURS 6337Advanced Research Design & Methods

NURS 6339Mixed Methods Research Design

Proficiency Exam



Year 3


NURS 6160-6660Dissertation


NURS 6160-6660Dissertation