Undergraduate Programs
Athabasca University at Mount Royal College Bachelor of Nursing Degree Program (124 to 127 credits)
Regulations effective September 1, 2003

This program is designed for students who are just entering the nursing profession. It is a 4-year integrated degree program (with an optional diploma exit) and is offered collaboratively by Athabasca University and Mount Royal College (MRC). Students may elect to write the Canadian Registered Nurse Examinations and to apply for licensure as a Registered Nurse upon completion of program requirements for either the degree or diploma exit.


Admission Requirements

Students seeking admission to the AU at Mount Royal College Bachelor of Nursing (BN) degree program will apply directly to Mount Royal College. Applications for fall admissions will be accepted after December 1 of the previous year. Closing date for applications is March 15. Further information about the application process is available.

Preference will be given to students with the highest averages in English, Mathematics, and Biology.

Admission on the basis of secondary school standing: An overall average of 65 percent or higher and no grade below a D (50 percent) in the following:

English 30 and Biology 30  
Mathematics 30 or Pure Mathematics 30  
One of Chemistry 30, Physics 30 or Science 30
One other appropriate Grade 12 subject  

Admission on the basis of maturity
(age 20 years and older):

  An overall average of 65 percent or higher and no grade below a D (50 percent) in the following:
English 30 and Biology 30  
Mathematics 30 or Pure Mathematics 30  
One of Chemistry 30, Physics 30 or Science 30
  Admission on the basis of post-secondary standing:
Completion of the equivalent of 5 courses and be in good standing at a recognized post-secondary institution
(i.e., 5 semester courses with a minimum of 15 credits)
A minimum 2.0 grade point average on a 4-point grading scale
A grade of D (50 percent) or higher in English 30, Mathematics 30 or Pure Mathematics 30, Biology 30, and one of Chemistry 30, Physics 30 or Science 30 or equivalent. Students not meeting these requirements will be assessed on an individual basis.
  Students admitted to the program must annually provide proof of current immunization status and current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS).
  Degree Requirements

Students enrolled in the program will take courses from AU and Mount Royal College. AU nursing courses and some support courses will be offered on site at Mount Royal College. Students may elect to take these courses by distance learning (individualized study). AU will not normally award transfer credit for Nursing courses that are more than 7 years old at the time of the request.

Credit requirements for the Bachelor of Nursing (BN) degree may range from 124 to 127 credits depending upon the combination of courses selected. Students selecting this route will be awarded a Bachelor of Nursing Degree by AU.

Students selecting the degree completion route will be permitted a maximum of 7 years to complete all degree requirements.

An optional diploma exit is available at the end of the third year of the program. Credit requirements for the diploma exit range from 105 to 108 credits depending upon the combination of current courses selected. Students selecting this route will be awarded a diploma in nursing by Mount Royal College.

A maximum of 5 calendar years will be permitted to complete course requirements for the diploma exit.
Students wishing to complete the remaining degree requirements through AU, following the diploma exit, will be permitted a maximum of 4 calendar years thereafter to do so.
  Further information regarding the diploma exit option.
  Residency Requirement
  A minimum of 30 credits must be taken through AU, of which 21 will be in nursing/health studies and 9 in non-nursing courses.
  Course Requirements

Course requirements are divided into 3 categories: required support courses, required electives courses, and required nursing courses.

Required nursing courses are further subdivided into 3 clusters. Courses listed in Cluster A are prerequisite to those listed in Cluster B, and courses listed in Cluster B are prerequisite to those listed in Cluster C. Prerequisite and co-requisite course requirements are also present within Cluster A, B and C. Students are responsible for ensuring that prerequisite and co-requisite course requirements are met throughout the program.

It is recommended that the required support courses be taken early in the program; option/elective courses can be taken at any time during the 4 years of the program. At least 2 of the Arts and Sciences options must be at a 300/3000 or 400/4000 level and each of the Arts and Sciences option courses must be selected from different categories of option courses (i.e., not more than one from any one category) including the behavioral sciences, communications, fine arts/physical education, humanities, mathematical sciences, natural sciences, and social sciences.

Students selecting the optional diploma exit must complete all required support courses, required open/elective courses and required Cluster A and B nursing courses to be awarded a diploma in nursing.


indicates an AU course;  
indicates a course that can be taken either through AU or MRC; the absence of an * or ** indicates an MRC course.
  Additional information about MRC courses.
  Required Support Courses (18 or 21 credits)
  Any junior (200/2000) level or senior (300+/3000+) level English course (or equivalent) taken from an accredited college or university.
BIOL 235 Human Anatomy and Physiology*
BIOL 1220 and
BIOL 1221
Anatomy and Physiology I & II (6) or (8)
MATH 215 Introduction to Statistics*
MATH 216 Computer-Oriented Approach to Statistics*
  one of several introductory statistics courses offered at MRC including ANTH 3307 or MATH 3333 (3)
NUTR 330 Introductory Nutrition*
NUTR 331 Nutrition for Health* (Recommended) (3)
PSYC 323 Developmental Psychology*
PSYC 3325 Life Span Development (3)


  Required Option/Elective Courses
  Arts and Sciences Requirement** (12)
  Required Nursing Courses
  Cluster A Courses (30 credits)  
NURS 326 Health Assessment and Health Promotion with Individuals* (3)
NURS 2201 Understanding Health (4)
NURS 2203 Professional Nursing Practice I (3)
NURS 2265 Health Patterns of Populations (3)
NURS 3301 Theoretical Foundations of Professional Nursing (4)
NURS 3303 Professional Nursing Practice II (6)
NURS 3305 Pathophysiology (4)
NURS 3307 Nursing Therapeutics and Pharmacology (3)
  Cluster B Courses (41 credits)  
HLST 320 Teaching and Learning for Health Professionals* (3)
NURS 328 Understanding Research* (3)
NURS 4401 Adult Health (3)
NURS 4403 Professional Practice in Adult Health (4)
NURS 4411 Family Newborn Health (3)
NURS 4413 Professional Practice in Family Newborn Health (4)
NURS 4421 Child Health (3)
NURS 4423 Professional Practice in Child Health (4)
NURS 4431 Mental Health (3)
NURS 4433 Professional Practice in Mental Health (4)
NURS 4441 Seniors Health
NURS 442 Introduction to Nursing Care of Older Adults * (3)
NURS 4443 Professional Practice in Seniors Health (4)
  Diploma Exit: 105-110  

Note: The order in which the above theory and clinical practice courses are taken will vary depending upon availability of clinical placements.

To complete their BN degree requirements, students must complete all of the courses listed below in Cluster C.

  Cluster C Courses (23 credits)  
NURS 432 Management and Leadership in Nursing Practice* (4)
NURS 434 Community Health Promotion* (4)
NURS 438 Trends and Issues in Nursing and Health Systems* (3)
NURS 4XX Senior Level Nursing Option** (3)
NURS 5583 Independent Professional Practice Specialty Focus (9)
  Total Credits to Degree Completion: 124-127  
NURS 4XX can be taken through either AU or MRC
and will satisfy 3 credits of the AU residency
  Sequencing of Courses
  One potential route (assuming that the student has no prior credit) through the program can be found at www.mtroyal.ab.ca/Calendar/degrees/BNDAUpd.htm. Variations are possible and will be influenced by factors such as prior credit, availability of clinical placements, and student preferences regarding scheduling.
  Program Progression and Graduation Requirements

To be considered a student in good standing, you must achieve a minimum grade of C- (60 percent) in all AU nursing courses and a grade of C in all Mount Royal College nursing courses. Students must achieve a minimum grade-point average of 2.0 in AU and Mount Royal College courses to be eligible to graduate.


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