Careers and Outcomes

Certified nurse anesthetists work in hospitals, clinics and other facilities that offer surgical care. Completion of the program will prepare you well for your future career as a nurse anesthetist. Participation in the program will expose you to several areas of specialty inside and outside the operating room. By the time you graduate from the program you will have administered 1,000-1,200 anesthetics and completed 1,400 hours of study. The Missouri State School of Anesthesia graduates have repeatedly scored well on the national certifying exam and 98.6 percent have passed in either their first or second time of taking the exam.

Becoming a nurse anesthetist

The Missouri State School of Anesthesia is a competitive program that prepares you for a career as a nurse anesthetist. Missouri State offers a Bachelor's to Doctorate of Nurse Anesthesia Practice, a.k.a. DNAP, degree and also a DNAP completion program, a.k.a. MS to DNAP. The Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia program is in the McQueary College of Health and Human Services at Missouri State University. The final class of graduates to graduate from the master's program was in May 2016. Since that time, all students have graduated with a Doctorate of Nurse Anesthesia Practice.

What do you need?

  1. An unencumbered nursing license
  2. Critical Care Experience
  3. See specific requirements on program requirements link

What does critical care experience mean? Critical care must be obtained in a critical care area within the United States, its territories or a US military hospital outside of the United States. During this experience, the registered professional nurse has developed critical decision making and psychomotor skills, competency in patient assessment, and the ability to use and interpret advanced monitoring techniques. A critical care area is defined as one where, on a routine basis, the registered professional nurse manages one or more of the following: invasive hemodynamic monitors (e.g., pulmonary artery, central venous pressure , and arterial catheters), cardiac assist devices, mechanical ventilation, and vasoactive infusions. Examples of critical care units may include but are not limited to: surgical intensive care, cardiothoracic intensive care, coronary intensive care, medical intensive care, pediatric intensive care, and neonatal intensive care. Those who have experiences in other areas may be considered provided they can demonstrate competence with managing unstable patients, invasive monitoring, ventilators, and critical care pharmacology.

After you complete this program you are able to work in several career settings including hospitals and medical centers. You learn from physicians and nurse anesthetists who educate you and supervise your clinical training.

For specific information on nurse anesthetists, please visit the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.

Attrition and pass rates

152 entry level DNAP students have graduated since 2017. Since becoming a clinical doctorate program, two students have withdrawn. Of the 230 students admitted to the Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia program since 1996, 222 or 97 percent graduated. Eight students were released or did not complete the program due to health concerns, poor academic performance, or poor clinical performance. Our cumulative attrition rate since 1996 is less than 2 percent.

Of the over 200 students who have taken the National Certifying Exam since 1996, 99 percent have passed the exam with the first or second testing.

DNAP statistics
Year 2023 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017
Number of graduates 23 23 26 24 23 19 14
Certification Exam pass rate, final attempt 100% 100%


100% 100% 100% 100%

Certification Exam pass rate, first attempt

83% 73% 78% 70% 70% 42% 64%
Certification Exam pass rate, 60 days 100% 86% 88% 87% 83% 75% n/a
Attrition rate 1% 1% 0% 0% 0% 0% 2%
Number for year 1 1 0 0 0 0 1
Total students 72 72 74 74 73 66 56
Attrition reason academic withdraw n/a n/a n/a n/a withdrew
Employment upon graduation 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%

DNAP statistics as of August 2023.

MS statistics
Year 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
Number of graduates 14 14 14 12 12 14 12
Certification Exam pass rate, final attempt 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%

Certification Exam pass rate, first attempt

57% 100% 79% 75% 100% 86% 83%
Certification Exam pass rate, 30 days n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
Attrition rate 0% 0% 2% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Number for year 0 0 1 0 0 0 0
Total students 55 55 43 36 35 34 32
Attrition reason     Academic        
Employment upon graduation 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%


The Missouri State School of Anesthesia Nurse Anesthesia Program is a 36 month entry level Nurse Anesthesia program fully accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs, a.k.a. COA, 10275 W. Higgins Rd, Suite 906, Rosemont, IL, 60018-5603, (224)275-9130. A full ten year was received in 2016 and the program's next review by the COA is scheduled for May/October 2026.


Missouri State University is accredited to offer master's, specialists and clinical doctorate degrees by the Higher Learning Commission-North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.