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Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD)

Emory’s PhD program in Nursing is committed to improving human health, the experience of health, and the provision of health care through the discovery of new knowledge and its translation into practice. The program is designed to prepare researchers who want to revolutionize health care and improve health outcomes for diverse populations.

The Fall 2025 application deadline is December 1, 2024.

Virtual Open House Events

All virtual open house events will take place Tuesday evenings from 6-7 p.m. EST on Zoom. Use the links below to register.

Upcoming Meetings:

Previous Meetings:

Program Contacts

Jean Harrell
Graduate Program Administrator


Emory University’s School of Nursing PhD program is a full-time, intense learning experience designed to develop the next generation of researchers who will change the face of health care. The program is interdisciplinary, drawing on the strengths of Emory University and its partners in areas as varied as the humanities, natural and social sciences, public health, engineering, law, and business.

At Emory, we offer a PhD track with a focus on data science in addition to our standard PhD curriculum. 

Signature Areas of Focus

Our program is built on the research strengths of our faculty in six signature areas:

Other Areas of Focus

Emory nursing faculty are committed to supporting the learning and discovery for our doctoral nursing students. We have faculty who are renowned scholars within a diverse range of expertise in areas such as:

  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular Health
  • Caregiver Well-Being
  • Data Science
  • Environmental Health
  • Farmworker Health
  • Global Health
  • Health Informatics
  • Maternal/Child Health
  • Mental Health
  • Metabolic Disease
  • Nurse Workforce and Quality of Patient Care
  • Pain, Opioids, and Harm Reduction
  • Palliative Care
  • Sleep Research
  • Symptom Science
  • LGBTQIA+/Transgender Health

For additional information, please visit our Office of Nursing research page.

This video gives prospective students pragmatic guidance in selecting a U.S. research-intensive doctoral program in nursing.



Teaching Assistant Training & Teaching Opportunity Program

The PhD in Nursing trains students to teach through the Teaching Assistant Training and Teaching Opportunity Program, or TATTO, program. This program provides a short course offered in late summer before the second year, training and teaching assistantships and teaching associateships.

The Jones Program in Ethics

The Jones Program in Ethics (JPE) at Emory University provides students with a foundational, cross-disciplinary introduction to the question of ethics for their research, training and careers. It is a required, integral part of the curriculum in LGS doctoral programs: Learn more Link here:

T32 Nurse Scientist Training Opportunities

The Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing invites applications for full time study in the PhD in Nursing program, and applicants for postdoctoral traineeship funded by the T32 program. T32 pre-and postdoctoral trainees will participate in a tailored research training program, which aims to prepare nurse scientists acquire knowledge and skills to employ data science (DS) and/or emerging health information technologies (HIT) into their research.

Provisional Artificial Intelligence Track

Artificial intelligence (AI) and associated computational sciences (machine learning, natural language processing, cybersecurity, etc.) are fundamentally changing the healthcare landscape. Accompanying these changes are tremendous opportunities as well as profound ethical concerns and social impacts. View a summary of the program. View a provisional version of the courses of study.

Admission Requirements

Fall 2024 Application Deadlines

  • Priority deadline: December 1, 2023
  • Final deadline: January 2, 2024
  • All applicants selected for an interview will be interviewed by video/zoom meeting, scheduled at a convenient time for applicant and faculty.
  • Admitted applicants will visit campus February 5, 2024 to meet with faculty, other PhD students, and to experience Atlanta.

Applications are submitted through Emory's Laney Graduate School (LGS). For more about LGS admissions, click here.

For admission to the Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing program, Emory University seeks highly qualified applicants with the discipline and motivation to excel in interdisciplinary research. To be considered for admission, you must submit the following items:

Emory University considers applicants who hold a BSN or MSN from a CCNE or NLNAC accredited program in the US or an international equivalent (Applicants holding a degree in a non-nursing related discipline will be considered on an individual basis).

Students entering with a BSN and intending to pursue advanced practice certification must be eligible for licensure as RN in Georgia by the end of the first year of study.


Meet our Students

Meet our current and past doctoral students and learn a little more about how they impact the world of nursing research.

Student graduate’s dissertations include:


  • Evaluating Stochastic Epigenic Mutations as a Potential Mechanism Translating Psychosocial Stressors into Risk for Postpartum Depression (Julianne Todd)
  • Relationships among Dietary Patterns, Metabolites and Symptoms in Persons with Heart failure (Erica Nicole Davis)
  • The Gut and Vaginal Microbiome in Pregnant Patients with and Without Urogenital Infections (Emily Faith Wissel)
  • End-of-Life Care of Uong Adult Solid Organ Transplant Recipients: A Retrospective Cohort Study (Carolina Gustafson)
  • LivFit with HIV:  Reducing inflammation and improving endothelial function with exercise adherence among older persons with HIV (Crista Irwin)
  • Identifying and Addressing Healthcare Disparities in the Pediatric Acute Care Setting (Amy Rebecca Kolwaite)


  • Sexual Dysfunction in Women with Gynecologic Cancer Pre-and Post-Radiotherapy and its Association with Obesity and the Gut Microbiome (Haerim Lee)
  • Evaluation of Facility-Based Individual Differentiated Service Delivery Among Stable People Living with HIV in Nairobi, Kenya Using Mixed Methods Research (Rosemary Kinuthia)
  • Relationships Among Strong Black Woman Belief, Coping Behaviors, Social Support, and Psychological Distress for Black Mothers after Stillbirth (Carrie Henry)
  • The Influence of Postpartum Retention in Care on Mortality in Women Living with HIV (Jade McBroom)
  • The role of the circulating registered nurse in communicating and fostering relationships and the impact on time spent in the operating room (Kent Haythorn)
  • The Role of Vitamin D in Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy and Gene Expression within an African American Cohort (Sheila Jordan)
  • Diabetes Management and Self-Care among Emerging Adults: Emerging Adult and Diabetes Care Provider Perceptions of Self-Management Influences, Visit Interaction, and a Tool to Enhance Diabetes Care at Visits (Rachel Wolf)
  • Staying Alive in Little Five: Perceptions of Service Industry Workers Who Encounter an Opioid Overdose in Little Five Points, Atlanta (Sara Febres-Cordero)
  • The Occupational and Health Histories of Undocumented Immigrants Receiving Frequent, Emergent-Only Hemodialysis (Daniel Smith)
  • Characteristics and Treatment Outcomes of Adolescents with Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder in Psychiatric Residential Treatment (Amy Greenblatt)

A full list of student accomplishments is updated regularly (PDF).

Here are just a few job titles of our graduates.

  • Chief Nursing Officer with the Jamaican Ministry of Health
  • Epidemic Intelligence Service, Center for Disease Control
  • Pediatric Center for Wellness
  • RTI International – Division of Public Health and Clinical Research
  • The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Center for Pediatric Nursing Research and Evidence Based Practice

Tuition and Awards

Full-Tuition Scholarships

All full-time admitted students are granted full tuition waiver and receive an annual stipend over 12 months in exchange for teaching and research services. The stipend is drawn from a combination of faculty advisor grant support, school support and student research grants received during the program. Stipends are renewed each year, contingent upon satisfactory academic and research performance, for a total of four years. Faculty and students work together to identify and apply for National Institutes for Health's National Research Service Award and other fellowships for stipend and research support funding during the doctoral program. Students also receive Professional Development Support Funds from Laney Graduate School to attend conferences and support research-related expenses.

T32 Predoctoral Fellowships through Spring 2023

The School of Nursing offers a research training program for selected predoctoral students to focus on developing and testing interventions to improve health outcomes of persons with or at risk for chronic conditions such as cardiovascular and neurological diseases, cancer, diabetes mellitus, HIV-AIDS, and asthma/COPD. Individuals selected as fellows in this training program receive a monthly stipend, benefit assistance, assistance for professional travel, and modest funds to support research related expenses. The Laney Graduate School also offers scholarships to PhD students.

Charting Innovative Paths for Nursing Research & Scholarship

Student Presentations at GANLC 2023

Many of our students participated in the 11th Annual Georgia Nursing Leadership Coalition Doctoral Symposium, “Charting Innovative Paths for Nursing Research & Scholarship” at Emory Nursing Learning Center on 2/11/23.

Students gave the following presentations at the Event:

  • Policing Mental Health: Race and Psychiatry in Atlanta
    Avi Wofsy – PhD Student, Emory University
  • Childhood Trauma Exposure and Length of Labor: A Potential Oxytocin-Linked Contributor to Adverse Perinatal Outcomes in Black Birthing People
    Abby Britt – PhD Student, Emory University
  • Personal Measures of Air Pollution During Pregnancy and Infant Head Circumference and Length at Birth
    Hina Raheel – PhD Student, Emory University
  • Ways of Knowing: The Historical Intersections of Breastfeeding, Capitalism, and Whiteness
    Octavia Vogel – PhD Student, Emory University
  • Bots and Fake Participants: Ensuring Valid and Reliable Data Collection Using Social Media Recruitment MethodsZ
    Roseline Jean Louis – PhD Student, Emory University

Many students presented posters. Hayden Herring, 1st year student, won 1st place for his poster.

Hayden Herring, 1st year student, won 1st place for his poster.

How to Successfully Apply to Our PhD Program


Application Process Questions

How Much is the Application Fee

$75 US.  The fee is non-refundable, and can be paid by credit card as part of the online application.

When exactly is the application deadline?

The deadline falls at midnight, U.S. Pacific time, on the deadline date of the each program. Nursing PhD program application deadline is January 1.

May I request a fee waiver?

Yes. Application fee waivers are processed through Laney.  The application fee waiver page explains our waiver policy.

Should I wait until I have my official test scores before submitting my application?

No.  Complete the online application at your earliest convenience.  When we receive your scores, they will be matched with your application.

Do I need to submit non-degree transcripts?

Yes. Admissions committees consider your complete academic record. 

If my undergraduate Degree is from Emory, Do I need to request a transcript from Emory?

Yes. You will need to upload one as part of your online application.  (If you are offered admission and accept, you will not need to submit an official copy, since we are able to verify the one you uploaded.)

If I participated in an exchange program while an undergraduate, do I have to request that transcript?

If you took some courses at a university as part of an exchange, like a study abroad program, and those course credits (course name, credit hours, and grade) are reflected on the transcript that includes your degree, then you do not need to submit a separate transcript from the university where you studied as part of an exchange. If you list that exchange experience as a separate educational experience on your application, you will need to upload either a separate transcript or a note explaining to us that the credits are included in another transcript. 

How should I submit my transcripts in the application?

Scan and upload them through the online application. Unofficial transcripts issued by the Registrar to you (the student) are acceptable.

You are required to submit one transcript from each post-secondary institution attended, present school included. International transcripts must be translated and notarized.  

Please do not mail paper transcripts.  If you are admitted and decide to attend Emory, then you will need to submit official copies of your transcripts before you can enroll. But for your application, the scanned, unofficial versions are all that's needed.

Does the recommendation letter have to be on the Emory form?

We encourage the use of the online recommendation system. If a recommender is unable to use this system, contact the program you are applying to for instructions.  You can find contact information on our Degree Programs page.

Must letters of recommendation be submitted by the application deadline?

It is possible to submit letters of recommendation after the application deadline, but it is not advisable.  Most programs begin to review applications very soon after the deadline, and an application is not considered complete unless it has three letters of recommendation. 

Can I make changes to my application after I have submitted it?

No. Contact the graduate program to which you are applying for advice.  You can find contact information on our Degree Programs page.

Can I reactivate my application from last year?

No. Applicants who wish to reapply must submit a new application, application fee, and supporting credentials.

Need Help?

Technical issues with the application: Email CollegeNet at 

Additional Questions

Do you have to have your research focus before entering the program?

No, but strongly encouraged.

Can I start the PhD program in the spring semester?

NO.  This program begins with the fall semester matriculation only.

Can this program be completed in 3 years?

It can be done in three years if you are really focused.  But it will be challenging.

What are the fees students pay?

Enrollment, technology, health and wellness, athletic  and activity fees.  

Fall and spring you should be prepared to pay approximately$442, summer fees are about $351

When do I submit the application for the T32 program?

T32 application is due one day after the PhD program application, Jan. 2nd

Can I have my international transcripts reviewed by an agency other than World Education Services (WES)?

Laney Graduate School requires WES services review.

Do I have to have a master’s degree to enter this program?

No.  Students can apply to the program with a BSN

Can I work/ be employed outside the program?

Any work/employment has to be approved by the program

How many hours can I work if approved?

Students are allowed to work 10 hours a week

Featured Story

Emory nursing doctoral students receive prestigious NIH predoctoral fellowship awards

Emory nursing doctoral students receive prestigious NIH predoctoral fellowship awards
Read More

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