Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Program PHD

A Focus on Clinical Research

The YSN PhD program prepares intellectual leaders who can contribute to the development of nursing science through their theoretical, substantive, and methodological knowledge and skills. Students bring to doctoral study unique combinations of experiences, knowledge, and capabilities that serve as the basis for developing programs of study congruent with the overall curriculum, but able to be individualized to allow gaining in-depth knowledge of a particular theoretical or clinical area.

The YSN PhD program is a full-time program that includes formal coursework, seminars, research assistantships, teaching fellowships, advisement, informal faculty and student interactions, and original dissertation research. All students are fully funded, including tuition, healthcare, and a monthly stipend.  Select students have the opportunity to participate in the Robert Wood Johnson Future of Nursing Scholars Program, the Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar Program, and NIH training programs in behavioral research in type 1 diabetes, along with self- and family-management of chronic illnesses.

If you have a master’s degree in nursing (or equivalent) apply to our PhD program. If you have a RN with a bachelor’s degree (any subject), apply to our MSN-PhD Joint Degree program. 

phd program studiesFields of Study

Fields of study include chronic conditions (e.g., diabetes, obesity cardiovascular disease, cancer, HIV/AIDS, sleep disorders); symptoms; self- and family management; maternal and child health; policy and politics of health care; global health; health equity and care of vulnerable populations; acute and critical care;; end-of-life and palliative care; and school- and community-based interventions.

More Information about the Program

The PhD program is administered by the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. For more information about the admissions process, please contact them by email at

To request more information about the program please complete this form or contact Robin Whittemore, Professor and Director of the PhD Program at or 203-737-2351.

Several information sessions, including virtual and in-person meetings, are scheduled throughout the semester. The application deadline is January 2.

Meet the Faculty

Wei-ti Chen, RN, CNM, DNSc, Assistant Professor

Jane Dixon, PhD, Professor

Marjorie Funk, PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN, Professor
Margaret Grey, DrPH, PhD, RN, FAAN, Annie Goodrich Professor
Holly Powell Kennedy, PhD, CNM, FACNM, FAAN, Executive Deputy Dean and Helen Varney Professor of Midwifery
M. Tish Knobf, PhD, RN, FAAN, Professor, Chair of the Division of Acute Care & Health Systems
Mark Lazenby, PhD, APRN, FAPOS, Assistant Professor 
Ruth McCorkle, PhD, RN, FAAN, Florence S. Wald Professor of Nursing
Nancy S. Redeker, PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN, Professor
Nancy Reynolds, PhD, RN, C-NP, FAAN, Professor
Lois Sadler, PhD, RN, FAAN, Professor
Allison Shorten, PhD, RN, RM, FACM, Associate Professor
Jacqueline Taylor, PhD, PNP-BC, RN, FAAN, Associate Professor
Robin Whittemore, PhD, RN, FAAN, Associate Professor
Julie Womack, CNM, APRN, PhD, Assistant Professor  

Meet the Program Leader

Robin Whittemore PhD, APRN, FAAN

Professor of Nursing and PhD Program Director (Full bio.)