Skip to content. Skip to main navigation.

UTA College of Nursing and Health Innovation’s doctoral programs ranked among Top 50 in the nation

Thursday, August 25, 2016 • Media Contact: Lekan Oguntoyinbo

nursingAll Topics

Nursing Student

The University of Texas at Arlington’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation doctoral programs offer two of the best values in the country for practicing nurses seeking terminal degrees, according to Value Colleges.

Value Colleges’ Top 50 Best Value Online college lists strive to strike the right balance between quality and affordability.

The College of Nursing and Health Innovation offers two terminal degrees in nursing: a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a PhD. The DNP is primarily oriented toward practical application and is popular among advanced practice nurses. It is designed to prepare graduates for careers in both industry and academia. The PhD has a strong research and theory focus and is strongly oriented toward careers in research and the academy. The college is introducing a third doctorate - a PhD in kinesiology - this fall.

The evaluators ranked the PhD program No. 35 and the DNP program No. 42. Both programs were not ranked by Value Colleges last year. They noted that there has been a proliferation of DNP programs since the American Association of Colleges of Nursing began recommending the degree several years ago. The evaluators also noted that the college has the largest nonprofit nursing program in the country and added that the University’s location in one of the largest and fastest growing metropolitan areas and proximity to world class healthcare facilities gives the college an added advantage in offering these doctoral programs.

Anne Bavier, dean of the College of Nursing and Health Innovation, called the rankings a tribute to the hard work of the faculty and the quality and talent of the graduate students in the program as well as an acknowledgment of the college’s stature as a leading healthcare education institution.

“This ranking is a recognition that our college and our University have an immense capacity to provide a high quality education at all levels of the spectrum, including the bachelor’s, master's and doctorate,” Bavier said. “I am very proud of our faculty and administrators who have worked so hard to make these programs a success.”

The rankings come on the heels of UTA’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation’s prestigious Center of Excellence designation from the National League for Nursing. UTA is one of only four institutions in Texas that currently holds this designation. Nationwide, 12 earned the honor in 2015.

Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost ad Interim Linda Johnsrud said the new rankings further distinguish UTA’s doctoral programs and will enhance the college’s growing reputation as a leading destination for healthcare education and research.

“Not only would nurses who obtain these degrees advance their careers, they could also play a significant role in helping to address the nursing shortage in Texas by serving as instructors in clinical settings in the classroom and in industry,” Johnsrud said.

Value Colleges’ evaluation is just one of several coveted rankings the nursing program has received in recent months. Earlier this year, U.S. News & World Report rated the college’s master’s in nursing science program 75th, up 15 spots from the previous year. ranked the online RN to BSN program the best in the country and the online bachelor’s in nursing program the second best. Nursing Schools Almanac named UTA’s nursing program one of the top four percent in the country and the 13th best in the southwest region.

Value Colleges based its metrics on three criteria:

  • The program’s reputation, which Value Colleges bases on U.S. News & World Report’s 2017 rankings of the best graduate schools for nursing
  • Affordability: Value Colleges uses the lowest in-state tuition rate
  • Projected salary outcome, which is based on Payscale’s data for institutions’ mid-career alumni. Salaries for advanced practice nurses with DNPs are typically in excess of $90,000, according to Payscale.

Value Colleges’ Top 50 Best Value Colleges of 2016 rankings also recognized three other UTA programs in the area of education and business, including: online graduate education (No. 2), dual MBA & Health Management (No. 25) and the Master of Public Administration (No. 9). Read more about all of the rankings at


About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie Research-1 “highest research activity” institution of about 55,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at

For more on the Strategic Plan, see Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact.