Nursing, Degree Completion
GPRC offers you the option of pursuing a career in Nursing with the University of Alberta Collaborative Baccalaureate Nursing Program, a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) Degree program. This program will prepare you to be licensed as a Registered Nurse.
All the courses in the Bachelor of Science, Nursing program can be completed at Grande Prairie Regional College but you will be required to attend at least one clinical placement outside of Grande Prairie. Practica may involve evening and night hours and weekends.
Special qualities are required for the nursing profession. You must be a caring individual who considers the dignity, individuality and worth of the patient, client, and family. Knowledge and skills will be developed through a variety of structured and student-directed instructional delivery methods. You will gain practical experiences in nursing laboratories and in local and regional health care facilities.
The Collaborative Baccalaureate Nursing Program offers a method of instruction referred to as Context-Based Learning or CBL. Throughout the program, students work in small groups with a tutor to explore a series of nursing scenarios.
Content from nursing, physical sciences, medical science, social sciences and humanities are introduced and integrated beginning with the first scenario in NS1900. Nursing practice occurs in concentrated blocks of time in each term, in a variety of settings, including a community and an acute care experience in each year of the program.
Students in the degree program should refer to the University of Alberta calendar for full program articulation, degree guidelines and graduation requirements.
High School Applicants
All applicants under 21 years of age must present a High School Diploma or equivalent and an overall average of 65 percent with no mark lower than 60 percent in any of the following:
- English 30-1
- Biology 30
- Chemistry 30 or Science 30
- Mathematics 30-1 or 30-2
- One of
- Chemistry 30
- Science 30
- Mathematics 31
- Physics 30
- Computer Science – Advanced Level CTS (5 credit)
- Social Studies 30-1
- 30-level Language
- Fine Arts course
Applications will be accepted beginning October 1 of each year for the following September. Selection of applications begins March 1. Applications received after the end of February may not be considered for admission.
Grande Prairie Regional College will accept 56 students into the first year of the nursing program. The very high demand for the program in the past few years has made it impossible to accept all applicants; therefore, preference will be given to applicants who are best qualified.
Only completed applications will be considered; therefore, all official transcripts must be received by March 1. Applicants with a completed post-secondary university degree will be assessed on an individual basis.
Preference will be given to applicants who are best qualified as determined by an admission scoring system based on high school and post-secondary course grades. Should two or more applicants have the same score, the students will be ranked according to the earliest application date. Conditional letters of admission will be mailed to successful applicants. Qualified applicants not selected for admission will be placed on a waitlist according to score.
As per college policy, outlined in the admissions section of the calendar, “the College, at its discretion, may refuse admission to any applicant”.
Practicum agencies require criminal record checks of students working in their organizations. Information regarding criminal record checks will be provided to students after they have been admitted.
Admission of Aboriginal Students
Four seats in the first year of the nursing program will be reserved for qualified applicants of aboriginal ancestry. The top four applications, based on the outcome of the approved scoring system chart, will be selected for offer of admission and will be assigned these reserve seats. If the designated applicants do not fill these reserved seats by March 31 of each year, the seats will be offered to the general applicant pool.
Aboriginal ancestry is defined by the Constitution Act of 1982, Part II, Section 35(2). Accordingly, Aboriginals are Inuit, Indian and Metis peoples of Canada. If you are applying as an aboriginal student, you may be required to present proof of Aboriginal ancestry.
If you have previously enrolled in a nursing program and stopped out for any reason, your application to enter a Nursing program at GPRC will be considered on an individual basis and contingent upon space being available in the program.
Transfer from Other Nursing Programs
If you are currently enrolled in a nursing program at another institution and are applying to transfer into year two or three at GPRC, you must have a GPA of 2.0 on the last 24 university transfer credits. Official transcripts of all post-secondary study and a letter of support from the Chair or Dean of your current program are required before your application will be considered. The letter of support must clearly indicate that you are eligible to enrol in a nursing program.
Admission to years 2 and 3 is not guaranteed and is subject to the availability of seats. Applicants for years 2 and 3 of the nursing program will be considered for admission based on the following priorities:
- former GPRC nursing students who have withdrawn in good standing and who apply within 12 months of their withdrawal
- students currently enrolled in the University of Alberta Collaborative Baccalaureate Nursing Program at one of the partner sites
- students currently enrolled in other nursing programs and who are in good standing. (Students not previously enrolled in the University of Alberta program may be required to complete courses to fit into the context-based learning (CBL) curriculum.)
- students not currently enrolled in a nursing program who have withdrawn from a previous nursing program are required to complete the readmission process. Admission is subject to the decision of the Department of Nursing Education and Health Studies.
If more than one qualified applicant fits one of the previous categories and are equally qualified for admission, priority will be established by date of application.
Other Requirements for Students Admitted to Nursing
Health and Safety Requirements
All students admitted to the Nursing program must be capable of completing responsibilities and activities as required in clinical practice. In order to successfully pass clinical practice courses, students must consistently demonstrate the essential skills and abilities to safely provide nursing care to their assigned patient/client. The requirements for Registered Nurses are applicable to students in the Collaborative BScN Program. To review a summary of these requirements, see www.gprc.ab.ca/departments/nursing/. If a student believes they may require assistance to be successful in the program, they are encouraged to contact a Student Services Advisor as soon as possible after admission for any accommodations that may need to be arranged.
Students must have a current Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation for Health Care Providers (CPR-HCP) prior to their first clinical placement that must be maintained annually throughout the program. A Standard First Aid Certificate is a requirement prior to the entrance into the program but does not have to be renewed. In addition, students are required to have WHMIS certification. Students must provide a photocopy of these certifications before their first clinical placement or they will not be allowed to attend the practicum. In addition, students must provide an immunization record prior to admission. Students who are admitted to the program will receive information on required and recommended immunizations with their admission. Some immunizations, including Hepatitis B, may need to be initiated prior to the first day of the program.
The College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) requires mandatory reporting of any blood borne virus infection (BBVI) when applying for initial registration and renewal to practice as a registered nurse. Existence of a BBVI may require modifications to the practice of a registered nurse, but this would occur infrequently. Recommendations for practice for health care workers who have a BBVI are available through the Alberta Expert Review Panel for Blood Borne Infections in Health Care Workers. For further information about this issue contact Deputy Registrar, College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta at www.nurses.ab.ca.
Students may be required to attend at least one clinical placement outside of Grande Prairie and will be responsible for obtaining transportation to practica placements and for the costs of necessary travel and accommodations. Required practica placements may be a distance of 150 kilometres or more from Grande Prairie. Some practicum agencies may require Criminal Record Checks of students working in their organizations. Information regarding Criminal Record Checks will be provided to students after they have been admitted.
Students are required to purchase a stethoscope and a penlight, and to have uniforms and scissors in the practica setting.
Length of Time to Complete Years 1–3
The curriculum is designed to be taken over four years. Students should complete Years 1 -3 of the program within four years after initial admission to the program.
Application for an extension to the program, along with a plan for completion, must be submitted to the Chairperson for review by the Student Academic Review Committee. With permission, students have six years from the time of admission to complete all requirements for this program.
- Students 21 years of age or over will be considered for mature student admission based on minimum overall average of 65 percent with no mark below 60 percent in each of the following:
- English 30-1
- Biology 30
- Chemistry 30 or Science 30
- One of Mathematics 31 or Mathematics 30-1 or 30-2
Academic Progression Criteria
A grade of C- is the minimum passing grade for any nursing course with the exception of NS1050 and NS2150. To be promoted from one semester to the next, you must have successfully completed all of the required nursing courses of the previous semester. For promotion from year to year in the program and for graduation, you must have successfully completed all the required nursing and non-nursing courses of the previous year.
Students are required to maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 to continue in the basic nursing program, to transfer to the University of Alberta and to graduate. Students with a term (semester) GPA of 1.7 to 1.99 will be placed on academic warning for one semester. Students on academic warning who fail to achieve a cumulative GPA of 2.0 by the end for the next term will be required to withdraw from the program. If the GPA warrants a second academic warning, the student will be required to withdraw from the program.
A student with a GPA of 1.69 or lower must withdraw from the nursing program. Readmission to program is subject to departmental review. A student dismissed for academic reasons may apply for readmission after a lapse of one full year.
Students completing year three apply to the University of Alberta for admission to fourth year. Admission to fourth year and registration at the University of Alberta is contingent upon satisfactory academic standing in the first three years of the program. Satisfactory academic standing is passing grades in all previous courses with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 on the 4.0 scale. If these conditions are met, students will be granted block transfer for work completed at the College. The University expects that electives and required courses in the support disciplines be completed in the recommended order. Research and statistics courses and electives completed at GPRC will be transferred as part of the three-year block transfer. Electives taken at GPRC in fourth year will be transferred to the University on an individual course basis. These courses require a minimum passing grade of C- for transfer approval.
Clinical Progression Criteria
Students must complete theory and practice components of nursing courses to receive credit. Students who have not received a pass in the clinical or laboratory portion of a nursing course are not given credit for the course and must repeat both the clinical and non-clinical portions of the course. The clinical component, explained in the course outline, must be completed for credit to be granted.
A student who is absent more than two clinical days in one clinical nursing course may need to make up the lost time before being allowed to continue in the program. Absences from the clinical site may result in the instructor being unable to evaluate the student’s clinical performance. If clinical performance cannot be evaluated, a failing grade may be assigned in the course. Whenever a student’s clinical performance is considered marginal in a nursing course, the student’s total academic and clinical performance in the program is reviewed and considered in determining continuation in the program.
An instructor, in consultation with the Chair, may immediately deny assignment of a student to, may withdraw a student from, or vary the terms or conditions or a site of a practicum/clinical placement, if the instructor has reasonable grounds to believe that this is necessary in order to protect public interest.
Curriculum is subject to changes by the University of Alberta.
- NS2900 (5)
- NS2910 (7)
- NS2940 (5)
- Political Science Elective (3 credits)
- Elective (3 credits)**
- Elective (3 credits)** (this elective can be taken in Spring Term, Year Two or Year Three)
The following are University of Alberta courses for which students apply to and register with the University of Alberta as per University of Alberta calendar:
* Content to be integrated within scenarios in nursing courses.
** The University of Alberta requires a minimum grade of C- for transfer credit of electives.
Students, who entered Year 1 of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program in September 2008 or prior to that date, must choose senior electives (6) to meet University requirements for graduation.
Students who have completed all the required courses and electives identified in the third year of the curriculum may apply to an accelerated program. Students who qualify for admission to the accelerated program will register in NURS 490 and NURS 491 in the Spring Term following the completion of third year and in NURS 494 and NURS 495 in the successive Fall Term. Acceptance into the accelerated program is based upon a competitive GPA.
The number of seats in the accelerated program is dependent upon clinical placement opportunities and instructor availability.
Statute of Limitations on Advanced Standing
A grade of C- is the minimum passing grade for any nursing or elective course required for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program that will be accepted for advanced standing (transfer) from other institutions.