nurse anesthesiology

Post-bachelor's to DNP

This full-time program is for registered nurses with a bachelor's degree and a minimum of two years of critical care experience within the last five years.

The curriculum contains courses in advanced physiology and pathophysiology, anatomy with cadaver laboratory, advanced health assessment, advanced pharmacology, basic and advanced principles of anesthesia, physics and advanced chemistry for anesthetic practice, patient safety, ethics, professional aspects of nurse anesthesia, biostatistics, clinical scholarship, health care leadership, epidemiology and evidence-based practice.

Learn more about the doctor of nursing practice (DNP) program.

Admissions Requirements

Students are admitted to the program on a rolling basis. The deadline for a complete application is October 15. Interviews are conducted in the summer and fall semesters. Please complete the online application.

All required courses must be completed by the application deadline. Interviews will only be granted to those with completed applications.

  • A bachelors' degree or master's degree in nursing or an appropriate science such as biology, chemistry, health sciences, or pharmacology from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Registration as a professional nurse (RN or APRN) in the United States, its territories or protectorates. A license in the state of Connecticut will be required upon acceptance.
  • Two years of critical care nursing experience (must be within the past five years).
  • A minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale and a minimum of a 3.0 in the undergraduate level science courses.
  • Core sciences courses required:
    • Anatomy
    • Physiology
    • Chemistry (two semesters total, of which one should be in general/inorganic chemistry and one in organic chemistry)
    • Statistics
    • Microbiology
    • Pharmacology

Core science courses can be no older than 10 years old, without evidence of a minimum of one semester of Anatomy & Physiology and one semester of Chemistry as a refresher. Critical care experience must be within five years of application.

Required Documents

  • Application: Please complete an online application.
  • Application Fee: A $45.00 non-refundable application fee.    
  • Resume: Current Resume.      
  • Letter of intent.       
  • Two Evaluator forms:  One should be from a current supervisor and one from another person with authority to evaluate your professional ability.
  • Official Transcripts: Submit official transcripts from ALL undergraduate, graduate and professional schools attended (including part-time and summer study). If you received transfer credit from another institution, it is still necessary to send a transcript from the original university. These transcripts must be provided in a sealed unopened envelope.   
  • Nursing License: You will be required to submit a nursing license from the United States, its territories or protectorates to the Office of Graduate Admissions. You will be required to have a CT Nursing license prior to the start of your clinical practicum.
  • Certifications: Please email (, fax (203-582-3443) or mail a copy of your current certifications, (BLS, ACLS, PALS, CCRN).  
  • Documentation of Current Practice as an RN: Evidence of current practice as a Registered Nurse in a critical care area in the US, its territories or protectorates.
  • Interview: Personal interviews by invitation will be scheduled once an application is complete.
  • Foreign Applicants:
    • Evaluation of any foreign transcripts by either:
      World Education Services, Inc. - 
P.O. Box 745
 -  Old Chelsea Station
 - New York, NY 10113-0745 
Telephone: 212-966-6311 or toll free 1-800-937-3895
    • Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.
P.O. Box 514070
 - Milwaukee, WI 53202-3470
 Telephone: 414- 289-3400


The program has designed a curriculum based on the COA's Standards for Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs and the content outline described in the Council on Certification of Nurse Anesthetists' Candidate Handbook for the Certification Examination.

The program is designed to allow for increasing hours in the clinical area following the first and second semester. The first two semesters are entirely didactic, providing a theoretical foundation that prepares students to enter clinical practice in the third semester. Subsequent semesters build upon previous course work.

Coursework and the clinical practicum are sequential allowing for students to apply their didactic work to the clinical area. Pharmacology, anatomy and physiology and chemistry/physics will be offered early in the program to provide the strong science background required of nurse anesthetists entering the clinical area of practice. Basic principles will be accompanied by the first of the clinical experiences.  

Hands on experiences will begin in the simulation labs with exposure to the operating room setting and anesthesia equipment. Graduate nursing core courses are interspersed throughout the curriculum so that nurse anesthesia students have the opportunity to interact with students from other DNP specialties as well as CRNAs in the post masters track.

After the fourth semester, didactic course work decreases and students' clinical time commitment increases, allowing students to concentrate on applying theory to practice. Advanced principles will begin in the fall of the second year and will cover areas of specialized practice such as obstetrics, pediatrics and cardiac anesthesia. Specialty rotations will not begin until this coursework in complete.  Lab experiences in the cadaver and simulation labs along with the didactic will precede a regional rotation in the hospital settings. Students spend more hours in the clinical setting as the program progresses.  

Human factors and patient safety will be integrated into the curriculum when the student has obtained more advanced clinical skills and can participate more fully in the science of anesthesia and the recognition of vital areas of concern.  Professional aspects will include areas of wellness, professional issues and education. The health policy course will include a trip to the Midyear Assembly, incorporated as a lab. Oral comprehensive exams will he held shortly before graduation and will include pharmacology, anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology and basic/advanced principles topics in preparation for the National Certification Examination (NCE). 

Graduates of the nurse anesthesia program will earn the degree of Doctor of Nursing Practice, including a minimum of 1000 hours of supervised practice post baccalaureate, and a capstone project (portfolio).  The content and required hours in the curriculum meet the requirements outlined in "The Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice" (AACN, 2006) and the "Standards for Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs" (COA, 2013).

The post-bachelor's DNP program will be 36 months in length and is full time only. Transfer credits are not accepted into this specialized program.

Curriculum: 74 credits

Course Title Credits
Summer 1
NUR 517 Human Anatomy 2
NUR 517L Human Anatomy Lab 1
NUR 602 DE Principles of Ethical Theory in Nursing 1
PY 501 Advanced Human Physiology 4
Total 8
First Year, Fall Semester
NUR 500 DE Biostatistics  1
NUR 516* Health Policy & Organizational Systems 3
NUR 520 Advanced Health Assessment I 3
NUR 520L Advanced Health Assessment I Lab 2
NUR 530 DE Advanced Pharmacology I 3
Total 12
First Year, Spring Semester
NUR 514* Epidemiology & Evidence-based Practice 3
NUR 670 Basic Principles of Anesthesia  3
NUR 670L Basic Principles of Anesthesia Lab 1
NUR 671 Clinical Practicum I (1-2 days per week) 1
NUR 672 Advanced Pharmacology II 3
NUR 674 Professional Aspects of Nurse Anesthesia Practice I (attendence required at Mid-Year Assembly) 1
Total 12
**Attendance required at Mid-Year Assembly as part of NUR 674
Summer 2
NUR 673 Clinical Practicum II (3-4 days per week) 1
NUR 680 Physics, Equipment and Technology & Advanced Chemistry Concepts for the Nurse Anesthetist 4
Total 5
Second Year, Fall Semester
BMS 518 Advanced Pathophysiology 3
NUR 675 Clinical Practicum III (3-4 days per week) 2
NUR 676 Professional Aspects of Nurse Anesthesia Practice II 1
NUR 682 Advanced Principles of Anesthesia I 2
NUR 682L Advanced Principles of Anesthesia I Lab 1
Total 9
Second Year, Spring Semester
NUR 677 Clinical Practicum IV (4 days per week) 2
NUR 684 Advanced Principles of Anesthesia II 3
NUR 688 DE Human Factors and Patient Safety 3
Total 8
Summer 3
NUR 610 DE Clinical Scholarship and Inquiry in Nursing 3
NUR 610 PBL DE Portfolio Synthesis I 1
NUR 679 Clinical Practicum V (4 days per week) 2
NUR 686 Advanced Principles of Anesthesia III 1
Total 7
Third Year, Fall Semester
NUR 612 DE Leadership & Collaboration for Change in Health Care 3
NUR 612 PBL DE Portfolio Synthesis Seminar II 1
NUR 681 Clinical Practicum VI (4 days per week) 2
NUR 690 Advanced Principles of Anesthsia IV 2
Total 8
Third Year, Spring Semester
NUR 678 Professional Aspects of Nurse Anesthesia Practice III 1
NUR 683 Clinical Practicum VII (3-4 days per week) 2
NUR 694 Oral Comprehensive Exams 2
Total 5

*Online or on-ground (space available basis)
DE - online (distance education)

Pre-requisite for entrance: Undergrad A&P with labs (8 credits), Chemistry: Inorganic and Organic (8 credits), Microbiology (3–4 credits), Pharmacology (3–4 credits), statistics (3 credits). Oral comprehensives: Pharmacology, A&P, Pathophysiology, Advanced principles of Anesthesia Clinical Practicum—5 semesters—approx. hours 1800–2000.

Student and Professional Involvement

The nurse anesthesia program fosters professional involvement and socialization through a number of activities. Students will be required to become associate members of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists to acquaint them with the professional organization, it's publications, and issues of importance to nurse anesthetists.   

Students will be required to participate fully in the educational opportunities afforded by the program.  Class attendance will be required of all students as well as participation in on-line forums and discussion boards. Attendance at our state meetings (CANA) will be a requirement.  Students will be encouraged to attend at least one additional conference (AANA annual meeting or Assembly of School Faculty). Attendance at the Midyear Assembly will be included as a lab to complement the Aspects course (NUR 674). A call component will be included in the clinical curriculum following the first year. 

Clinical conferences will be held weekly when the clinical practicum begins to allow students to discuss their experiences at the hospitals and to share them with classmates. Students will be required to participate in the hospital in-service programs while on clinical rotations.  This may include doing a presentation at a departmental meeting or participating in a journal club and Morbidity and Mortality conferences. Students will also earn conference hours by presenting at Grand Rounds and attending classmate presentations.  A Journal Club will be part of the curriculum and attendance at this and presentation of selected articles will be required of each student.