Undergraduate Programs
Post-RN Bachelor of Nursing Degree Program
(120 credits)
Regulations effective September 1, 2003

Students complete the program regulations in effect at the time of their enrolment.

The Centre for Nursing and Health Studies offers the post-RN BN program. This program is designed to provide the registered nurse with the opportunity to acquire a broad liberal university education with particular emphasis on acquiring advanced knowledge and clinical practice skills related to family and community health promotion as well as leadership and management.

Counselling Services offers an assessment Web site, "Mapping Your Future: Your Career and Athabasca University."

For additional program information, please email the program advisor.

  Note: Students are required to complete the degree regulations that were in effect at the time they enrolled in their program. Students who are inactive (have not registered for a course within 12 months from their last contract date) must re-enrol and will follow the regulations in effect at the time of re-enrolment.


Enrolment Requirements

To enrol in the post-RN BN program the following is required:

graduation from an approved nursing diploma program
current registration/licensure with a provincial, state or national nursing association; Proof of registration must be submitted at time of application and maintained while completing the post- RN BN program.
  Degree Requirements  
  Bachelor of Nursing (BN) degree credit requirements 120
  Credits awarded for registered
nurse (RN) diploma *
  Total credits required to complete
the post-RN BN degree**
  Maximum Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) credits   15
Additional credit may be awarded for university transfer credits taken as part of an RN diploma program. Additional credit may also be awarded for university-level courses completed before admission to the post-RN BN program or on the basis of Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition.  
Students enrolled in the post-RN BN program who possess a recognized undergraduate degree may have their credit requirements reduced by up to 30 credits if the course work completed in obtaining that degree is applicable to the post-RN BN program requirements.  
  The 60 credits required to complete a post-RN BN degree are distributed as follows:  
  Required nursing credits 30
  Required non-nursing credits 18
  Electives 12

Residency Requirement

A minimum of 15 nursing credits must be taken through Athabasca University.

Course Requirements

Students may enrol in post-RN BN courses as non-program students. Before registering in a course, students should determine whether or not they may be eligible for transfer credit for the course. Students should also ensure that they have completed all prerequisite and co-requisite course requirements in accordance with the prerequisite declaration form.

Note: 300-level nursing courses should be completed before 400-level nursing courses.

Post-RN program students are strongly encouraged to register in ENGL 255 early in their program. However, the Alberta Universities Writing Competence Test may be used to demonstrate mastery of English writing skills. Upon successful completion of the test, students will be exempted from completing ENGL 255.

  Required Nursing Courses (30 credits)
NURS 322 Introduction to Nursing Informatics (3)
NURS 324 Concepts and Theories in Nursing Practice (3)
NURS 326 Health Assessment and Health Promotion with Individuals (3)
NURS 328 Understanding Research (3)
NURS 432 Management and Leadership in Nursing Practice (4)
NURS 434 Community Health Promotion
NURS 436 Family Health Promotion (4)
  Plus 6 credits from the following group of courses:
HLST 320 Teaching and Learning for Health Professionals (3)
NURS 327 Home Health Nursing (3)
NURS 427 Issues in Home Health Nursing: Guided Independent Study (3)
NURS 438 Trends and Issues in Nursing and Health Systems (3)
NURS 440 Senior Focus: Guided Independent Study (3)
NURS 442 Introduction to Nursing Care of Older Adults (3)
  Transfer credit for senior university-level nursing courses taken elsewhere (3 to 6)  


  Required Non-Nursing Courses (18 credits)
ENGL 255 Introductory Composition (3)
MATH 215 Introduction to Statistics
MATH 216 Computer-Oriented Approach to Statistics (3)
  Electives (from 2 or more areas of study; at least 6 credits must be at the 300/400 level) (12)
  Open Senior (300 or 400) Elective Courses (12 credits)
  May be nursing, non-nursing or any combination thereof (12)

Computer Requirements

Access to a computer with basic word processing and Internet access is required.

Required System
Pentium 200 or higher / 64 MB memory / 100 MB free disk space 56 k baud modem or greater / Laser or inkjet printer Internet Service at 56 k band or greater

Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer 4
Recommended: Internet Explorer 5.01 or Netscape Navigator 4.08

Word Processing: The required word processing system is Microsoft Word ( version 6.0 or higher)
Recommended: Microsoft Office 2000 Suite is preferred

Current operational anti-viral software
Recommended: Norton Antivirus

PCs are the primary equipment supported by Athabasca University's Help Desk. Only limited assistance for other hardware and software platforms is offered. Students are responsible for their own communication costs such as long distance telephone charges and subscriptions to an Internet provider, or any other communications service.


Specific Regulations

Given the unique and professional nature of the post-RN BN program, some of the general policies governing academic studies at Athabasca University are superseded by the regulations below.

RN diplomas from approved institutions will be accepted regardless of the year of graduation (10-year rule does not apply).
Athabasca University will not normally award additional transfer credit for nursing courses/certificates that are more than 10 years old at the time of the request. If evidence of current practice in the content area is submitted, this regulation may be waived.
In order to register in a nursing course with a practicum component, students must present proof of the following:

Current RN registration with the provincial, state or national nursing association ( or governing body) in the jurisdiction where the practicum will be undertaken
Current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation   (CPR) or Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS).
Current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS).
Agencies participating in practicum courses may request that students provide proof of up-to-date immunization status and a criminal record check at the student's expense.
The pass mark for all nursing courses is C- (60 percent).
To be awarded a BN degree, a minimum grade average of 2.0 is required in all AU courses used toward the degree.

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