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William F. Connell School of Nursing

Ph.D. Program

william f. connell school of nursing

Doctoral Program at the William F. Connell School of Nursing

The Ph.D. program in nursing includes three core areas of study:

  • knowledge development in nursing
  • research methods
  • substantive nursing

Students apply core content to a selected research concentration. The curriculum includes courses in philosophy of science, epistemology of nursing, and strategies for developing nursing knowledge.

Apply to the Ph.D. program



Saturday October 15, 2016
10:00 AM–12:00 PM

Advanced registration is required. Please email with the subject line "PhD Info Session" to register.

*Please be advised that we will not be accepting any part-time PhD students in 2017. 


Fellowship opportunities

Qualified Ph.D. students are offered a University Fellowship, which provides full tuition, a yearly stipend of approximately $23,000 and health insurance. The fellowship is renewable for up to three years providing the student maintains good academic standing and demonstrates progress toward the Ph.D. Learn more about fellowship opportunities.

Research process

Our Ph.D. program offers the opportunity for each student to develop the knowledge and skills that provide the basis for scholarly inquiry and research. Learn more about the research process.

Faculty research expertise and mentorship

Faculty are conducting well-funded programs of research and publishing in top-ranked journals. Since the goal of doctoral study is to make a unique contribution to knowledge in the field, students must be mentored by established and leading scientists in the discipline. Find out more about faculty mentorship opportunities


Our graduates can be found in a variety of positions, combining their clinical and research expertise to advance health care and the science of nursing, many with careers in academia. Read more about our students and alumni.

Why Boston College

Graduates of the doctoral program contribute to the development of knowledge through research and theory-building and the dissemination of findings in scholarly forums. Learn more about the William F. Connell School of Nursing


View a sample curriculum


Information for Non-Matriculating, Non-Degree Students

Non-matriculated students who wish to take graduate level courses are asked to get permission from the TOR and the graduate office (Marybeth Crowley or graduate associate dean) before registering.  This is especially important for courses that one intends to apply towards the PhD in Nursing degree in the future.  The graduate office needs to keep track of who is taking graduate courses and ensure that non-matriculated students are being advised properly.  Students who take more than two courses or take courses out of sequence may need to repeat coursework after they matriculate.

Taking graduate courses as a non-matriculated student does not equate to or ensure admission to a graduate program.  


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