Practical Nurse Diploma

This two-year diploma program is delivered in two formats; onsite and blended delivery. The onsite program is offered each year at the Cold Lake Campus, year one and two run consecutively. The blended delivery program is offered every second year and is available at the Lac La Biche and St. Paul Campus. Year one is scheduled to start August 24, 2017. Both formats are identical in content.

Our program emphasizes collaboration, health promotion and family-centered nursing. You will be equipped with the skills and knowledge required to work in a wide variety of health care settings, both rural and urban. Our enthusiastic, experienced instructors incorporate individual learning needs and imaginative, innovative classroom and lab experiences. As a graduate you'll be eligible to write the national licensing examination administered through the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta.

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Career Potential
Graduates will be eligible for jobs in acute care hospitals, continuing care centres, community care settings, client homes, or doctor's offices. Practical Nurses earn approximately $25.93 - $33.95 per hour.

Credential

Year 1: N/A
Year 2: Diploma

Admission Requirements
Year 1:  A High School Diploma is Recommended:

  • Biology 30 with Minimum 60%
  • English 30 or 30-1 with Minimum 60% OR English 33 or 30-2 with Minimum 70%
  • Math 20 Pure or Math 20-1 with Minimum 50% OR Math 20-2 with Minimum 60%
  • Chemistry 30 is strongly recommended

Other admission requirements include:

  • Minimum age of 18 prior to first practicum placement
  • Copy of Heart & Stroke Level C Certificate within six months of program start date
  • Current Signed Immunization Record - To be completed prior to Clinical Placement
  • Signed Health Status Questionnaire
  • Police Information Check & Vulnerable Sector Search - To be completed prior to Clinical Placement
  • Please click the following link for: minimum technical requirements for Moodle site.
  • ESL - ALL students whose first language is not English must meet one of the following:
    IELTS Academic Format with minimum scores as follows: Listening 7.5; Reading 6.5; Writing 7.0; Speaking 7.0.
    TOEFL iBT (internet Based) with minimum test scores as follows: Listening 23; Reading 21; Writing 25; Speaking 22.
    CELBAN, with a minimum test score as follows: Listening 10; Reading 8; Writing 7; Speaking 7
    Note: Testing must have been completed within two years prior to application to the program 

Year 2: Completion of Year 1 nursing courses. Students new to the program must provide a Police Information Check & Vulnerable Sector Search

Practicum Dates
Year 1: 
1. April 3, 2017 - May 5, 2017                                       
Year 2
1. November 21, 2016 to December 16, 2016
2. March 6, 2017 to March 31, 2017
3. April 3, 2017 to May 19, 2017

Transferability
The Practical Nurse diploma will be considered for admission to Bachelor of Applied Human Service Administration program at Grant MacEwan University. Currently Post LPN degree in nursing programs are available through the following institution: Athabasca University Minimum 25% Residency Requirement for Graduation. The following Portage College courses are transferable to and from University Studies; BIOL230 - Anatomy I, BIOL231/2 - Physiology I/II, ENGL102 - Intro Composition, HEED105 - Health Education, PSYC104 - Intro Psychology and SOCI101 - Intro to Sociology.

Think you might have courses similar? Check this site Alberta Government Link for agreements. 

Practical Nurse Diploma

  • ANATOMY I

    Course ID: BIOL230

    Name: ANATOMY I

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course provides an in-depth study of the structures of the human body and their interrelationships using a systems approach. The correlations between structure (anatomy) and function (physiology) are noted. Major topics include body organization, the integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular, lymphatic, digestive, endocrine, urinary and reproductive systems, the general and special senses, and human development. This course is designed to prepare students in medical fields of study for advanced courses in their respective fields, as well as other university transfer students.

  • COMMUNICATIONS FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

    Course ID: COMM135

    Name: COMMUNICATIONS FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course explores basic and therapeutic communication skills for the health professional. Communication skills required for the development of caring relationships and to overcome barriers will be discussed, as well as, the skills needed for interprofessional practice, group and family communication. Health teaching in individual and group settings is an important component of this course.

  • HEALTH ASSESSMENT

    Course ID: NURS152

    Name: HEALTH ASSESSMENT

    Hours: 60

    Credits: 4

    This course will teach students how to collect a health history and perform a physical examination with an adult client. The emphasis in this course is on normal structures and functions. The McGill Model of Nursing provides the framework for the health assessment within the nursing process. This course includes both classroom and laboratory practice. This course assists students in developing the knowledge and skills required to construct a complete health assessment.  This is the first step in the nursing process as nurses work together with the individual and family to develop a plan of care.  Prerequisite – Semester one nursing courses  Co-requisite – NURS 150, 151

  • HEALTH EDUCATION

    Course ID: HEED105

    Name: HEALTH EDUCATION

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course is designed as an introduction to the physical, social, mental, occupational, emotional, environmental and spiritual dimensions of personal health and wellness. These dimensions are described within the context of the Canadian Health Care System and the individual's community. Topics include primary health care, nutrition, exercise, stress management, weight management, eating disorders, common health issues and their prevention. Students will be expected to demonstrate knowledge of the seven dimensions of health and the ability to apply this knowledge to a self-analysis of health and physical fitness, as well as development and implementation of a personal wellness plan.


    The intent of this course is to promote a healthy lifestyle. By examining determinants of health, the current health care system, the seven dimensions of health and applying these concepts to their own lifestyle, students will be better equipped to function as role models and act as change agents for health promotion in their community.

  • INTRODUCTORY COMPOSITION

    Course ID: ENGL102

    Name: INTRODUCTORY COMPOSITION

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course helps students to develop the academic writing skills they use throughout their university studies. Students learn to identify good writing, and develop research, analytical, and organizational skills. Starting with building good sentences and paragraphs, the essay is the most important genre in this course. A thorough review of grammar and sentence structure is also a key component of this course. This course is designed for students in career programs who require proficiency in writing in an academic setting. Some students may be advised to take English 103, 106 or 108 or equivalent.

  • INTRODUCTORY PSYCHOLOGY

    Course ID: PSYC104

    Name: INTRODUCTORY PSYCHOLOGY

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course is a prerequisite to other psychology courses at Portage College and is normally followed by PSYC 105. (However, PSYC 105 is not a requirement in the CSW program.) This course is intended to inspire an interest in, and an appreciation for, the field of psychology. Topics in this course include the history of psychological science, psychological research methods, the structure and function of the brain and nervous system, learning, sensation, perception, memory, consciousness, thought and language. Prerequisite – None.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS 1: INTRODUCTION TO NURSING

    Course ID: NURS148

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS 1: INTRODUCTION TO NURSING

    Hours: 60

    Credits: 5

    This is the first nursing course of the diploma practical nurse program, and in it several concepts and processes are introduced. These concepts are further developed and applied throughout the diploma practical nurse program.

    The course introduces the learner to nursing by exploring health care in Canada, the history of nursing, and the evolving role of the practical nurse. Values, ethics, legalities, and legislation that affect nursing practice in Alberta are also introduced. The learner will relate the roles and responsibilities of the practical nurse to the direction of the professional association and standards of nursing practice. The nursing metaparadigm and nursing theory are explained as major concepts in nursing. Learners learn the holistic approach to client-centred care. Critical thinking skills are developed as the learner applies nursing knowledge to the delivery of quality, safe nursing care.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS 2: BASIC NURSING

    Course ID: NURS149

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS 2: BASIC NURSING

    Hours: 105

    Credits: 7

    This second Nursing Foundations course builds on theory and skills learned in Semester I, with a focus on the client and the nurse-client relationship. The primary purpose of this course is to prepare the student practical nurse for the continuing-care practicum. Topics include the metaparadigm of nursing, safety, professionalism, and leadership, but the focus shifts from the application of these concepts to self to applying these concepts to the client.

    Emphasis will be placed on using nursing process, demonstrating critical thinking, applying the concept of self-care, and setting priorities. Students will develop nursing care plans tailored to client needs, and will demonstrate effective documentation, mathematical calculations, communication, and client teaching skills. The lab setting will be used for students to apply theory, to practise skills, and to competently perform the selected nursing skills required for the

  • NURSING PRACTICE I: CONTINUING CARE PRACTICUM

    Course ID: NPRT155

    Name: NURSING PRACTICE I: CONTINUING CARE PRACTICUM

    Hours: 194

    Credits: 5

    This first practice nursing course provides opportunities for the learner to gain experience as a member of the interdisciplinary team by providing safe, holistic, and evidence-informed nursing care in a continuing-care setting, following the standards of practice for a practical nurse.

  • PHARMACOTHERAPEUTICS FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

    Course ID: PHRM250

    Name: PHARMACOTHERAPEUTICS FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course focuses on the theoretical knowledge required for safe medication administration. Knowledge of human anatomy and physiology will be integrated into the curriculum as mechanisms of action, therapeutic effects, adverse effects, and drug interactions are explored. The study of common drug classifications along with selected frequently used medications in each classification will be included. Legislation is reviewed with regards to over-the-counter and prescription drugs as well as political, social, economic and ethical factors will be discussed. Applicable professional practice interventions are examined with supporting rationale.

  • PHYSIOLOGY I

    Course ID: BIOL231

    Name: PHYSIOLOGY I

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course provides a study of the overall function of the human body. Major topics include fundamental chemistry, homeostasis, cytology and cell physiology, cell signaling and communication, and muscle, nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular, lymphatic, digestive, endocrine, urinary and reproductive physiology, as well as fundamental genetics as it applies to human physiology. This course is designed to prepare students in medical fields of study for advanced courses in their respective fields, as well as other university transfer students.

  • PHYSIOLOGY II

    Course ID: BIOL232

    Name: PHYSIOLOGY II

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course focuses on the study of homeostasis and how it is altered by physical, biochemical, microbial or genetic factors, providing an in-depth understanding of the mechanism of human body function, pathophysiology (disordered physiology) and disease processes. The course summarizes the normal function of each organ system and then presents a number of major diseases of each system, showing how symptoms and signs of selected diseases are produced by pathophysiology. This course is designed to prepare students in medical fields of study for advanced courses in their respective fields, as well as other university transfer students.

  • NURSING PRACTICE 2: ACUTE CARE PRACTICUM

    Course ID: NPRT210

    Name: NURSING PRACTICE 2: ACUTE CARE PRACTICUM

    Hours: 155

    Credits: 4

    This first practice nursing course provides opportunities for the learner to gain experience as a member of the interdisciplinary team by providing safe, holistic, and evidence-informed nursing care in a continuing-care setting, following the standard of practice for a practical nurse.

  • INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY

    Course ID: SOCI101

    Name: INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course is designed to introduce students to the discipline of Sociology and current sociological trends and issues. The course provides an overview of sociological concepts, perspectives, processes and institutions in a Canadian context.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS 3: MEDICAL SURGICAL NURSING

    Course ID: NURS200

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS 3: MEDICAL SURGICAL NURSING

    Hours: 135

    Credits: 9

    The focus of this nursing course is on nursing care and related skills based on evidence-informed medical/surgical nursing practice.  The learner builds upon previous nursing knowledge and related theory in adapting the nursing approach to the care of the medical/surgical client using the nursing metaparadigm and the nursing process.  The learner continues to develop leadership skills through the experience of mentorship.  A laboratory component is included in which learners apply theory and practise nursing skills related to medical/surgical nursing, including intravenous medication administration.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS IV: MATERNITY

    Course ID: NURS203

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS IV: MATERNITY

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This course introduces the learner to the childbearing family and the practical nurse's role in promoting, restoring, and maintaining the health of the maternity client and her family. The learner will apply knowledge of the nursing process and the four concepts of the nursing metaparadigm to the care of the expectant family before, during, and after the birth of the baby.

    The learner will build upon previous nursing knowledge and related theory in adapting the nursing approach to the care and health promotion of the child-bearing family. The learner will apply the collaborative interdisciplinary team approach to maternity care. Assessment of family strengths, coping abilities, and life experiences are key to the practical nurse's role in health promotion. New developments in maternal and newborn care will be examined through addressing trends and issues in maternity care.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS V: PEDIATRICS

    Course ID: NURS205

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS V: PEDIATRICS

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    Nursing Foundations V: Pediatric Nursing is a theory course focusing on pediatric clients and their families. Theoretical concepts of assessment of the pediatric client related to growth and development are introduced. Pathophysiology, nursing care, communication, and health-teaching techniques specific to pediatric clients and their families are discussed. This course builds on previous nursing knowledge and related theory, and assists the student in adapting nursing care for pediatric clients and their families through the use of the nursing metaparadigm, nursing process, and growth and development theories.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS VI: COMMUNITY NURSING

    Course ID: NURS206

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS VI: COMMUNITY NURSING

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This nursing course provides the learner with theories of family and community to acquire the knowledge and skill required to promote the health and well-being of populations within the community. The course emphasizes the importance of collaboration among the interdisciplinary health-care team, families, and communities to achieve safe, evidence-informed community nursing practice. The learner will build upon previous nursing knowledge and related theory in adapting the nursing approach to the care and health promotion of the family and community using the nursing metaparadigm and nursing process. Trends and issues in the care of families and communities will also be explored.

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS VII: MENTAL HEALTH

    Course ID: NURS204

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS VII: MENTAL HEALTH

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This nursing course explores legal and ethical considerations and social stigmas related to mental health disorders.  The learner examines evidence-informed mental health nursing practice for clients and their families as they adjust to changes in functioning associated with mental health issues and related treatments.  The learner builds on previous knowledge and related theory in adapting the nursing approach to the care and health promotion of mental health clients and their families using the metaparadigm of nursing and the nursing process.  Trends and issues in mental health nursing will also be explored

  • NURSING FOUNDATIONS VIII: TRANSITION TO PRACTICAL NURSE GRADUATE

    Course ID: NURS202

    Name: NURSING FOUNDATIONS VIII: TRANSITION TO PRACTICAL NURSE GRADUATE

    Hours: 45

    Credits: 3

    This final theory course of the program prepares the learner for the transition from student to graduate. The learner will explore working within the parameters of a health-care organization, labour relations, and the professional association. The learner will also learn about power, empowerment, contributing to successful teams, types of management and leadership styles, professional development, continued competence, lifelong learning, and quality improvement-all of which contribute to becoming a professional practical nurse in today's health-care field.

  • NURSING PRACTICE 3: ACUTE CARE PRACTICUM

    Course ID: NPRT215

    Name: NURSING PRACTICE 3: ACUTE CARE PRACTICUM

    Hours: 155

    Credits: 4

    This practice course provides the learner with clinical experience as a member of the interdisciplinary team by providing safe, holistic, and evidence-informed nursing care to clients in an acute-care environment following the standards of practice for a practical nurse. This course includes four weeks of instructor-supervised clinical practice on an acute-care medical and/or surgical unit and, in combination with Nursing Practice II, meets the program requirements of eight weeks of placement in an acute-care setting.

  • NURSING PRACTICE FINAL COMPREHENSIVE PRACTICUM

    Course ID: NURS230

    Name: NURSING PRACTICE FINAL COMPREHENSIVE PRACTICUM

    Hours: 271

    Credits: 7.0

    NURS230

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