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Nurse Anesthesia

The Nurse Anesthesia concentration prepares the graduate to become a CRNA Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA).

The front-loaded format includes four terms for didactic course work. During the fifth term, the students begin clinical rotations while completing didactic course work. The final four terms are dedicated full-time to supervised clinical education. The program is completed on campus at UTHSC and near-by clinical agencies.

Applicants are expected to understand the role, function, demands and expectations of CRNAs within the health care community. This information can be obtained by direct clinical observation of a CRNA and from the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists website.

Degree concentrations include pathways for those wishing to obtain initial CRNA certification and for APRNs with current CRNA credentials.


The University of Tennessee Health Science Center’s College of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Concentration is accredited by Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs, 222 S. Prospect Ave., Park Ridge, IL, 60068, (847) 655-1160. In May 2009, the program awarded 10 years of continued accreditation. The next onsite visit will be fall 2018, for a May 2019 accreditation decision. In addition, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accredit the University and College of Nursing. The most recent class of DNP graduates completed the program in May 2017. There was no attrition in this cohort. Employment of graduates within six months of graduation was 100%. Certification examination pass rate for first time takers was 88%.

 DNP Nurse Anesthesia FAQs

What are the clinical sites that UTHSC uses, and where are they located?
Currently, the clinical sites used by our students include the Methodist Healthcare Systems Hospitals (University, South, North, and Germantown Hospitals and Methodist Le Bonheur Children's Hospital), the Regional Medical Center, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital - Desoto (Olive Branch), and Baptist Memorial Hospital - Union County. All the sites are in the greater Memphis area with the exception of our rural experience at Baptist Hospital - Union County in New Albany, MS, which is approximately an hour's drive from UTHSC campus (61 miles).
What are the benefits of the clinical sites UT uses?
We are fortunate to use local clinical sites which provide a richness of experience serving a wide variety of patients with high-quality anesthesia care. Specialty anesthesia rotations, which occur during the full-time clinical component, include cardiothoracic, pediatric, pediatric oncology, neurosurgical, OB, trauma, pain management, burn, and rural site.
How many students are accepted each year? How many apply?
The number of applicants varies from year to year, but generally there are 3 - 4 applicants for every available seat in the class. The class size has ranged from 15 to 22 in recent years.
What can increase my chances of being accepted?

Priority is given to Tennessee Residents. Students who demonstrate critical thinking are highly ranked.

How much will this program cost?

Tuition costs are determined by in-state or out-of-state status and may change during the program. Tuition and fee information can be found at Additionally, the Educational Common Market may be available for some out-of-state students. Information on this program can be obtained at the Office of Financial Aid. Many employers also offer tuition reimbursement even for part-time employees. Additionally, students will need to make arrangements for travel and hotel accommodations during the oncampus experiences. Students should also explore the many private scholarship funds available for graduate study in their communities, region, state and nation. A Google search of graduate nursing scholarships will produce vast opportunities. Many diverse groups offer scholarship programs and some states and organizations also have loan repayment programs for nursing education. There are also federal government grants for nursing students.

Can I work during the program?

Working is strongly discouraged due to the academic rigor and time constraints of the Nurse Anesthesia program.

What certifications do I need?

ACLS, BCLS, and PALS certifications are required at application and must be maintained throughout the program. CCRN certification is highly recommended.

Can I get critical care nursing experience in a unit other than ICU?

One year of full-time critical care experience is a national requirement for admission to all Nurse Anesthesia Programs. In this program, we evaluate each applicant on an individual basis to determine the quality as well as quantity of critical care skills. A minimum of one year of professional nursing experience in adult and/or pediatric critical care is required within two years prior to application.

When does the program start?

There is a program introduction for incoming students in late May. The DNP Nurse Anesthesia program typically begins the first Monday of June, though the start date may vary depending on the calendar for that year.

Can I begin taking courses after acceptance but before the program starts?


Students may enroll in select UTHSC College of Nursing courses with permission from the Academic Dean. You might also take an equivalent graduate-level biostatistics or healthcare economics course at another institution if you seek prior approval from the College of Nursing Dean for Academic Affairs by providing the course syllabus. You must then submit supporting transcript documentation to request actual transfer of credit. Be advised that transferring courses may affect your ability to secure student loans; currently, a minimum 5 credits are required to qualify for part-time status.
Do you offer a post-certification DNP in Nurse Anesthesia?

CRNAs certified by the NBCRNA who wish to complete a DNP may do so through the Acute Care Nursing DNP program.

Last Published: Aug 22, 2017