Jan 26, 2021  
USC Catalogue 2017-2018 
USC Catalogue 2017-2018 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice

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The USC Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice offers a concentrated academic and comprehensive clinical curriculum. Students will gain experience in the various required clinical specialty areas including general, cardiothoracic, neurosurgical, genitourinary, gynecologic, head and neck, plastic, orthopedic, trauma, obstetrics, pediatric and ambulatory outpatient procedures as well as experience in regional anesthesia, pain management, trauma and emergency airway response. The program consists of 72 units and is completed in 36 months of continuous enrollment (nine semesters).

This professional doctoral program includes the essentials for doctoral education from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Programs. Core science courses in anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology and principles of nurse anesthesia complement the clinical residency. The student will discuss and synthesize current policies of the complex health care environment, review principles of population health, explore technologic health advances, and become an advocate of evidence-based research in clinical practice. (Note: during the first summer semester students will be on campus for a two-day orientation followed by online hybrid courses). Beginning fall semester, students will be in residence and course work will be a combination of on-campus and hybrid format(s). High fidelity simulation is incorporated into the curriculum to enhance student learning and clinical assimilation through skills workshops and communication, leadership and critical thinking.

Academic and Scientific Prerequisites

Program prerequisites include appropriate undergraduate course work in biology, anatomy, physiology, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, introductory physics, statistics or nursing research, health assessment and English composition. A minimum of one year of critical care or emergency department experience in a high acuity setting and shadow experience of CRNAs or anesthesiologists. Licensure as a registered nurse in California and current BLS, ACLS and PALS certifications are required prior to enrollment. Course work in anatomy, physiology and biochemistry older than 10 years may require the completion of refresher courses. Conversational Spanish is strongly recommended.

Computer Skill Requirements

During the program, students must have a personal computer or notebook with Internet access. The primary mode of program communication is email. Computer accounts are provided by the university to all students and can be activated online.


Prospective students should contact the program's admission office, (323) 442-2037 or uscnap@usc.edu for evaluation of previous course work and clinical background.


General requirements for admission include graduation from a regionally accredited school of nursing, a baccalaureate degree (minimum requirement), in nursing or a related field from a regionally accredited university or college, a minimum of one year critical care experience (surgical, medical, neurosurgical, trauma, pediatric or neonatal acceptable; post anesthesia care unit and/or emergency department will be determined on an individual basis), a cumulative GPA of 3.0, or higher, on a scale of 4.0, Graduate Record Examinations score with a minimum of 300 on verbal and quantitative combined and a superior score on the analytic section, completion of university and program supplemental applications, current licensure as a registered nurse, submission of an essay describing the applicant's career goals, professional resume and three letters of reference.

Competitive applicants will be interviewed and must articulate their reasons for seeking this educational opportunity and demonstrate an acceptable understanding of the role and responsibilities of certified registered nurse anesthetists. Selections are made on the basis of the formal interview and consideration of a variety of factors that include academic record, type and amount of clinical experience and professionalism.

Admission procedures follow the information in the USC Graduate School section of this catalogue. Admission standards for the USC nurse anesthesia program are established jointly by the Keck School of Medicine, the USC Graduate School and the Department of Anesthesiology. Interested students should apply online at gradadm.usc.edu. Additional admissions requirements and the supplemental application can be obtained from the nurse anesthesia program Website at keck.usc.edu/nurse-anesthesia-program/ or can be requested through email at uscdnap@usc.edu.

Degree Requirements

The program consists of a minimum of 72 units (including academic and clinical courses and the doctoral capstone project) and is completed in 36 months of continuous enrollment (nine semesters). 


All students will take the Self-Evaluation Examination (SEE) administered by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) at the end of the fifth and eighth clinical semesters. Students will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Examination (NCE) administered by the NBCRNA following graduation.

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