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What Sets PhD in Nursing Program Apart

Thursday, December 07, 2017
By:  Carol Bova

2016 PhD StudentsThe PhD program at UMass Medical School's Graduate School of Nursing is designed for students who are interested in advancing nursing care and improving health outcomes. The majority of our students are employed nurses who want to continue working as educators or clinicians while in a PhD program; thus, we have created a program that caters to this need. Classes are held one day a week (Tuesdays); offering in person, rigorous content in a seminar format where there is an interchange between the students, faculty, and other investigators at UMass. Our pedagogy is based on the philosophy of Bernard Lonergan; making our program student-centric rather than faculty-centric.

We offer three pathways designed for individuals looking for a community of scholars. The BS to PhD pathway admits students who are registered nurses with a bachelor's degree. The Masters to PhD pathway offers students that have master degrees in nursing and other health related fields the option to receive a PhD in nursing. Our most unique option, the Graduate Entry Pathway, accepts individuals who don't have a degree in nursing that want to be research scientists. Our school is the only one in Massachusetts that offers this option. The average time for students to complete their PhD is 4.2 years for post masters students.

After graduation, our students are vigorously recruited to fill the numerous vacancies that exist in academic nursing programs. 68% of our graduates are currently working as nursing faculty (41% in public colleges/universities in Massachusetts). In addition, 26% of our graduates choose clinical or leadership positions within health care institutions and 6% work in government or private industry.

About Carol Bova PhD, RN, ANP

Carol Bova PhD, RN, ANPCarol has been working at UMass Medical School for 30 years. Dr. Bova started as an NP in the HIV program. At that time, she became interested in research and pursued a PhD at Boston College. She then attended Yale University for a 3 year postdoc before returning to UMass Medical School to take a faculty position in the Graduate School of Nursing. Dr. Bova is the current chair of the UMass Medical School IRB and the Director of the PhD program in nursing. Her research interests are in HIV, patient provider trust, psychometrics (instrument development), and mentoring the next generation of nurse scientists.

Contact Carol for more details about PhD in nursing program