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Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The MSN-DNP, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program is a hybrid online curriculum designed for nurses holding an MSN wishing to pursue a career as a doctoral/doctorally prepared PMHNP. The program prepares graduates to provide mental health care across the lifespan in a variety of settings.


Course work, simulation, and supervised clinical experiences provide the knowledge, skills, and abilities to provide thorough assessment, diagnosis, and treatment including at least two different approaches to psychotherapy and an in-depth understanding of psychopharmacology.


The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program requires two on-sites per semester throughout the students’ clinical courses. On-site requirements provide opportunities for networking with peers, formative learning, and summative assessments of advanced clinical skills within the College of Nursing’s high-fidelity simulation center. Synchronous online course meetings will also occur throughout the semester for case discussions, content review, and presentations.

Upon completion, graduates may seek national certification by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and be designated a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP).

Changes in the health care environment have made advanced practice psychiatric mental health nurses quite marketable. Graduates practice in a wide variety of settings caring for clients who range across the life-span. The flexibility of the skills encompassed in this curriculum allow graduates to take advantage of new and emerging roles in the provision of services to persons with mental illness.

Students will complete a minimum of 600 hours of direct patient care clinical hours as part of the 1000 required hours to confer the DNP degree. Clinical rotations offer the student opportunities to practice their clinical skills and be mentored by licensed heath care providers. Identification of clinical sites and preceptors involves a collaboration between the student and CON faculty and staff. Students are encouraged to identify potential clinical sites and preceptors. Concentration coordinators have ultimate approval of all clinical placements. Students desiring to complete clinical rotations outside the state of Tennessee must be familiar with their state Board of Nursing requirements for graduate clinical placements. Questions should be directed to the Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs.

The concentration is typically a full-time program. Student curriculum plans of study are individualized and carefully determined under the guidance of the concentration coordinator.

Students work closely with their concentration coordinator and faculty to find appropriate clinical placements that meet the individual academic needs of the student (600 total clinical hours). While students may help identify potential clinical sites, they are not guaranteed any particular site placement. Travel to and from clinical sites is part of the concentration requirement.

Please note that the Psychiatric Mental Health NP Graduate Certificate portion of this MSN-DNP Program is not eligible for federal financial aid as it is not classified as a degree program by the University. Applicants should consider this when evaluating the costs of the program.

New application deadline of December 1, 2022 for the 2023 admissions cycle. This extension applies to all DNP and PhD program with the exception of Nurse Anesthesia.  If you submitted a complete application prior to December 1, then your application is in review and you will receive notification about your decision by early February.

Clinical Graduate Certificates (FNP, PMHNP, Acute Care and Primary Care PNP) admit only for the summer, and DNP and PhD Programs admit only for the fall each year. Applications for the Non-clinical Graduate Certificates (Health Policy, Health Informatics, Nurse Education) are accepted on a rolling basis.

All prospective College of Nursing students must apply online through UT Graduate Admissions. All application materials including transcripts must be submitted directly to Graduate Admissions prior to the application deadline. Please check with UT Graduate Admissions for information about when applications will open for the next recruiting cycle.


MSN-DNP Program Coordinator PMHNP Program Coordinator Graduate Programs Advisor

Tracy Brewer
DNP Program Chair

Mary Johnson
Clinical Assistant Professor

Jackie Behrens

Advising Coordinator