Graduate Division

Nursing Science Ph.D.

Section 1


The PhD in Nursing Science aims to:

  • Advance nursing scholarship through theory development and empirical research
  • Discover new knowledge that enhances nursing practice
  • Create future academic nurse leaders

PhD graduates of the UC Irvine School of Nursing will be equipped to advance the science of nursing and address the critical shortage of nursing faculty with PhDs.  

Consistent with faculty research expertise, the PhD program specifically promotes the development of scientific and theoretical expertise that contributes to scholarly endeavors in four key areas:

  • Health promotion and disease prevention
  • Disease and symptom management
  • Health disparities and diversity
  • Health services and health policy

What Sets Us Apart?

  • We offer a hybrid PhD program that prepares nurse scientists with expertise in clinical-translational research methods to develop new knowledge that will enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in local, national, and global communities.
  • We incorporate interdisciplinary integrative health approaches to promote population health and well-being one person, one family, one community at a time
  • UCI’s diverse, engaged faculty collaborate across schools -- from engineering to the arts -- to create novel solutions for the health challenges facing underserved communities.
  • Using community-informed and community-based research methods, nursing faculty tackle population health needs with compassion, determination, and a keen understanding of the need for appealing, user-friendly approaches to providing healthcare.

Graduates will:

  • Develop expertise in an area of interest
  • Use translational research methods creatively to develop new knowledge in that area of nursing science
  • Contribute to collaborative work in transdisciplinary research teams
  • Engage in scholarship that reflects an understanding of the social, cultural, economic, and political milieu in which knowledge translation operates
  • Provide leadership for improving the health and well-being of communities through translational science

Quick Facts

Program Type

Doctoral Program

Normative Time to Degree

5 years

Capstone Type


Accordion Section

Admissions Requirements

To be considered for admission, applicants must have a Bachelor or Master of Science degree in Nursing from a regionally and CCNE accredited institution with degree standards equivalent to the University of California. Degrees from international programs must have accreditations satisfactory to the Graduate Division and the Sue and Bill Gross School of Nursing and be equivalent to UC educational requirements.

Applicants are required to submit transcripts showing a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.2 for undergraduate work and 3.5 for graduate work from an accredited institution and a scholarship record commensurate with requirements of the Graduate Division and the Sue and Bill Gross School of Nursing. Previous education at the undergraduate and/or graduate levels will be evaluated for equivalency of design, theory, and intensity as a means of determining whether the prior degree standards are equivalent to those required by the UC system. Applicants are also required to submit scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination taken within the last five years as required by the Graduate Division. If English is not the applicant’s first language, the applicant must demonstrate proficiency in English prior to admission commensurate with that identified by the Graduate Division for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or TOEFL Internet-Based (TOEFL iBT).

Applicants who did not have a course in descriptive and inferential statistics within the last five years must complete a course similar to STATS 7 prior to admission. Applicants without an undergraduate research course are required to complete both NUR SCI 125 and NUR SCI 200. Applicants who have completed an undergraduate research course but not a graduate-level course in nursing research must complete NUR SCI 200.

In addition, applicants are required to submit:

  • A statement of objectives for graduate study, career goals, and personal research goals including ways in which those goals are compatible with the UCI expected outcomes for doctoral education (please see the Ph.D. section of the School of Nursing website for details);
  • A resume or Curriculum Vitae detailing educational background, professional work, previous research, and volunteer work as well as other relevant information such as fluency in another language;
  • Examples of scholarly work;
  • Three letters of recommendation submitted on the Graduate Division Recommendation Form from persons in a supervisory role who are able to comment on academic abilities, research-related abilities/capabilities, and/or work-related experiences; and
  • Evidence of licensure as a registered nurse.

A personal interview will be required of applicants considered for admission. Acceptance is based on materials submitted, research interests related to those of faculty, and results of the interview process.

Financial Support

Financial support is guaranteed for the first 3 years of the PhD program, and includes a minimum $35,000 award each year to pay fees and provide a stipend to assist with educational and living expenses.  Funding sources are available in the form of fellowships, teaching and/or research assistantships, campus scholarships and grant awards.

In addition to the financial package above, students are eligble to receive graduate student loans from the Financial Aid Office.  To be eligible for all awards, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 2. Note that international students are not eligible for need-based financial aid and should not complete the FAFSA. All graduate students, international and domestic, are eligible to receive university fellowship funding as long as you are documented.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) ›

Students are encouraged to apply for their own grant funding in year 4 and 5.   The UC Irvine Financial Aid website’s external scholarship database has a sub-listing for scholarships available to both Nursing Science graduate and undergraduate students. To view these scholarships, click on the nursing tab. Financial Aid and Scholarship database ›

Tuition & Fees

Graduate/Credential Student Fees 2019-20

  Fall 2019 Winter 2020 Spring 2020 Annual
Student Services Fee 376.00 376.00 376.00 1,128.00
Tuition 3,814.00 3,814.00 3,814.00 11,442.00
Assoc. Grad Students Fee 9.00 9.00 9.00 27.00
Student Center Fee 139.69 139.69 139.68 419.06
Bren Events Center Fee 23.00 23.00 23.00 69.00
Recreation Center Fee 88.00 88.00 88.00 264.00
Document Fee * 80.00 0.00 0.00 80.00
Student Health Insurance 1,459.18 1,459.18 1,459.18 4,377.54
Total California Resident $ 5,908.87 $ 5,908.87 $ 5,908.86 $ 17,726.60
Nonresident Supplemental Tuition 5,034.00 5,034.00 5,034.00 15,102.00
Total Nonresident $ 10,942.87 $ 10,942.87 $ 10,942.86 $ 32,828.60


Posted 12 July 2019 at

The tuition, fees, and charges posted to your billing statement or account are estimates based on currently approved amounts. These figures may not be final. Actual tuition, fees, and charges are subject to change by the Regents of the University of California and could be affected by increases or reductions in State funding, or other developments. Accordingly, final approved levels (and thus your final balance due) may differ from the amounts shown.

* The Document Fee provides lifetime access to official transcripts and academic verifications without a fee for in-person pickup or delivery by USPS. In addition, there is no fee for mailing the initial diploma. Effective Fall 2018, new undergraduate, professional, and graduate students are assessed the one-time document fee. Eligible students are able to use financial aid to cover the Document Fee.

Core Faculty

Stephanie Au
Assistant Clinical Professor

Miriam Bender, PhD, RN, CNL
Assistant Professor

Sara Brown, EdD, MSN, RN
HS Assistant Clinical Professor

Candace Burton, PhD, RN, AFN-BC, AGN-BC, FNAP
Assistant Professor

Sarah Campbell, MS, APRN, FNP-C
HS Assistant Clinical Professor

Leah Centanni, MS, APRN, FNP-C
HS Assistant Clinical Professor

Lorraine S. Evangelista, PhD, APRN, CNS, FAHA, FAAN

Michelle A. Fortier, PhD
Associate Professor

Yuqing Guo, PhD, RN
Assistant Professor

E. Alison Holman, PhD, APRN, FNP
Associate Professor

Dave Holmes, PhD

Jung-Ah Lee, PhD, RN
Associate Professor

Maureen Movius, MN, APRN, CNS, CMSRN
HS Associate Clinical Professor

Tiffany K. Nielsen, DNP, APRN, FNP-C
HS Assistant Clinical Professor

Adeline Nyamathi, PhD, ANP, FAAN
Founding Dean and Distinguished Professor

Susanne J. Phillips, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP
HS Clinical Professor

Melissa D. Pinto, PhD, RN, FSAHM, FAAN
Associate Professor

Vanessa Rodriguez, MSN, APRN, FNP-C
HS Assistant Clinical Professor

Kathleen Saunders, MSN, APRN, CNS, CPN, PHN
HS Associate Clinical Professor

Sanghyuk Shin, PhD
Assistant Professor

Elizabeth Symanski, MSN, APRN, FNP-C
HS Clinical Instructor

HS Clinical Professor

Academic Data

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