MSN-Family Nurse Practitioner and Adult Gerontology CNS

Mission and Vision of the College of Nursing

Purdue University Northwest Mission:

Purdue University Northwest (PNW), in the land grant tradition of learning, discovery and engagement, provides high quality, affordable undergraduate and graduate education to students of Northwest Indiana and beyond. We create a welcoming environment that promotes critical inquiry through experiential learning, faculty scholarship, civic engagement and community partnerships.

Purdue University Northwest College of Nursing Mission:

The College of Nursing is dedicated to providing high quality and affordable undergraduate and graduate nursing education in a visionary learning environment that is responsive to serving students of Northwest Indiana and beyond. The College of Nursing supports curricula that foster a commitment to life-long learning, critical inquiry through experiential learning, scholarship, civic engagement and community partnerships.

Purdue University Northwest Vision:

Purdue University Northwest will be the institution of choice in Northwest Indiana and beyond as the center for education, innovation, economic development, and culture.

Purdue University Northwest College of Nursing Vision:

PNW College of Nursing will be the Midwest’s college of choice, attracting diverse students who will become the next generation of nurse leaders empowered with evidence-based solutions to dynamic health challenges.

Conceptual Organization of the Family Nurse Practitioner and Adult Gerontology CNS

The primary purpose of the Master’s program in nursing is to prepare students for advanced practice in nursing. The program aims to prepare a graduate capable of assuming diverse leadership roles in clinical practice, thereby contributing to the advancement of the nursing profession while enhancing the quality of life for those that we serve.

The program has a strong clinical emphasis and provides an opportunity for continuing career development. An educational environment is created in which scientific inquiry, role development and leadership behavior are synthesized to facilitate the implementation and advancement of nursing theory and to contribute to the scientific knowledge base needed for advanced clinical practice.

The Master’s program builds on the foundation established by undergraduate nursing education by providing experiences designed to increase the knowledge base necessary for advanced practice in nursing. This increased knowledge base includes developing expertise in scientific inquiry, specialized practice, and leadership skills.

The faculty believes that all students begin graduate study with a basic understanding of the metaparadigm concepts of Person, Environment, Health and Nursing. These are conceptual areas commonly addressed in baccalaureate nursing education programs. Graduate study enables students to better understand and operationalize these concepts. The faculty respects the uniqueness of students’ basic preparation for professional nursing practice. Further, the faculty encourages them to build upon this foundation and to reflect, refine and evolve a professional philosophy and evidence-based framework for advanced practice in nursing.

Universe. The synthesis of the major concepts of Person, Environment, Health, and Nursing. Together, these concepts provide the main focus for advanced practice of nursing, and define the contextual arena in which all professional activity occurs.

Person: Persons are viewed as developing across the life span and are dynamic, complex and autonomous. As citizens of the world and members of a larger network of families, groups and communities, individuals strive to meet their basic human needs.

Individuals are in constant interaction with other open systems and interpret the world according to their own contextual reality. In doing so, persons create their own subjective meanings about health, illness and well-being. As a result they have the right to fully participate in health care decisions that affect their quality of life.

Environment: Environment is the arena for human development and provides the conditions of persons to grow, change and meet (or not meet) their basic human needs. Additionally, the environment exerts social, cultural, political and religious norms that influence the behavior of individuals, families, groups and communities. Reciprocally, individuals, families, groups and communities influence the nature of the environment.

Nursing: Nursing is a profession rooted in a humanistic philosophy and encompasses ethical standards resulting in a commitment to advocacy and social justice. Central to the practice of professional nursing is respect for the autonomy and dignity of all individuals without regard to gender, ethnicity, religion or class.

Advanced practice in nursing is based on the synthesis of scientific, experiential, aesthetic and interpersonal knowledge. It is through the application of this synthesis that the profession advances for the purpose of meeting the healthcare needs of those served.

Health: Health is a subjective state, rooted in experiences, values, and beliefs and is culturally defined and practiced. Health is influenced by life events that are biological, psychological, sociological and spiritual. Health is reflected in a person’s ability to pursue their goals and desires and achieve a quality of life that produces satisfaction and happiness.

Teaching-Learning Process: The primary mission of the Purdue University Northwest graduate program in nursing is to engage students in the teaching-learning process relevant to advanced practice in nursing. The faculty believes that this dynamic process is mutual, constantly evolving and provides the opportunity to both inspire and empower students. Through faculty and preceptor interactions and role modeling, students are challenged to implement critical thinking skills relevant to advanced practice decision making in the provision of evidence-based therapeutic intervention, to communicate effectively and to provide leadership that supports positive change. Furthermore, students are encouraged to value and assume responsibility for life-long learning.

Advanced practice in nursing students are educated to:

  1. Synthesize advanced nursing knowledge, patient preferences and best available evidence to make decisions for practice.
  2. Provide leadership to influence delivery of healthcare to diverse populations in increasingly complex environments.
  3. Operationalize role competencies appropriate to the area of nursing specialization.
  4. Evolve a professional philosophy that reflects the humanistic values of nursing and a commitment to the discipline.

Concepts are ordered and related within the curriculum systematically. The core knowledge of nursing theory, sociocultural theory, evidence-based nursing practice, health promotion, ethics, and health policy form the basis of the curriculum. Grounding in the core concepts prepares students to move through the program to the advanced practice core and specialty courses. The faculty believes that this sequencing of curricular content best enables students to acquire the knowledge, attitudes and abilities necessary for advanced practice in nursing in an increasingly complex health care environment (see Figure 1).

Figure 1 — Conceptual Model for the Graduate Program

Organizing Concepts

Advanced Knowledge Base: Graduate education knowledge that builds upon the foundational nursing education and is informed by theory, evidence-based nursing practice, critical thinking, and humanistic values.

Leadership: The ability to influence, guide and instill vision in people in order to effect practice change in professional, social, political and ethical situations that affect clients and the nursing universe.

Decision Making for Practice: Selecting interventions and actions from alternatives that move patients/clients from a specified or desired outcome state in a clinical context of uncertainty.

Core Concepts/Threads

The program at the graduate level is built upon and includes the following major conceptual areas:

Theory: Systematically organized information from nursing and related disciplines. Theory enables the individual to understand conceptual relationships, to rationally view and critically analyze predictable as well as unpredictable nursing practice situations, and to effectively act upon the nursing universe at an advanced level.

Evidence-Based Nursing Practice: The process by which nurses make practice decisions using the best available evidence, their clinical expertise, and patient preferences in the context of available resources.

Best available evidence: Findings from the highest quality research and/or other sources of evidence that are appropriately designed to answer a question relevant to nursing practice and forms the basis of therapeutic intervention. The type of evidence, and therefore what is “best”, depends on the nature of the question, activity and the purpose.

Clinical expertise: Knowledge that forms professional craft know-how that arises from formal as well as informal experiences and reflection upon those experiences, externalized to others, analyzed and critiqued.

Patient preferences: The relative value and meaning that patients place on varying health states that influence their autonomous choices regarding their healthcare.

Available resources: Sociocultural, economic and human resources coupled with the political will within the context that nurses deliver care.

Critical Thinking: The integration of a disposition toward inquiry with the processes of analyzing, evaluating and synthesizing relevant knowledge for the purpose of problem solving and developing creative approaches to nursing.

Humanistic Values: A belief in the worth and dignity of every person in our universe. A commitment to humanistic values in nursing encourages compassion, reasoning and a striving to address issues of social injustice in order to make the world a better place to live for all humans regardless of race, ethnicity, or economic status.

Therapeutic Intervention: A rational and deliberate nursing action based on theory, best available evidence, clinical expertise, patient preferences and available resources performed to enhance or support health.

Communication: Dynamic process whereby participants transact ideas, information, and/or feelings through verbal, nonverbal, written or technological methods.

Role development: The process of attaining advanced practice in nursing role competencies/standards as defined by national organizations related to specific areas of specialization.

Curriculum Options

The College of Nursing is currently admitting students into two areas of concentration within the Master of Science program.  These include Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist (AGCNS) and Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP).

The Purdue Northwest College of Nursing is currently admitting students to two additional concentrations, Nursing Education and Nurse Executive, within the online Master’s of Science in Nursing program.

Full-Time Study

Full-time study is available for the 50% online/50% classroom AGCNS and FNP concentrations. Full-time study is also available for the Nurse Executive and Nursing Education concentrations. The full-time option is not available for the primarily online AGCNS and FNP concentrations.

Time to completion for the full-time option is as follows:

  • Nursing Education: 12 months
  • Nurse Executive: 12 months
  • AGCNS and FNP (50% online/50% classroom): 24 months

Note: For students pursuing full-time study, we strongly advise not working full-time.

Part-Time Study

Part-time study is available for all concentrations and may be the best option for students who work full-time. Part-time students usually take one to two classes a semester and work with their academic advisor to plan the appropriate course sequence.

Typical time to completion for the part-time option with two classes a semester is as follows:

  • Nursing Education: 24 months
  • Nurse Executive: 22 months
  • AGCNS and FNP: 36 months

Students may proceed through their programs more slowly but must complete within 6 years from the term of admission.

Students may switch from full-time to part-time status and vice versa depending on space availability.

Students may elect to complete NUR 69800 Master’s Thesis in addition to their required courses. Students interested in pursuing the thesis option should discuss this with their advisor. The thesis work will consist of assigned research, which will be recorded as “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory”. The student must have three members of the graduate faculty serve on an examining committee, one of whom serves as chair of the committee.

The chair of the examining committee is responsible for guiding the student through the thesis process including proposal development and implementation of the research study. After the research is completed and the thesis written, the candidate will be given an oral examination in which he or she defends the thesis.

Courses and Curriculum Plans

Students can obtain course descriptions for all graduate courses by accessing the “Course Descriptions” link located under the Student  tab on the PNW website

Didactic Courses (Table 1)

Some of the Master’s program didactic courses are only available in an online format whereas others may also be available in the classroom.  The following list of courses includes information regarding the delivery format.  Contact the Graduate Program Advisor for more specific information regarding the sequencing of courses and any eligibility requirements.

Course # Course Title Delivery Format
NUR 50100 Foundations of Advanced Practice in Nursing Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 50200 Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing Online (Asynchronous)
Classroom
NUR 50300 Advanced Health Assessment Online (Asynchronous with limited on-campus experience)
Classroom
NUR 50500 Sociocultural Influences on Health Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 51000 Research & Evidence Based Nursing Practice Online (Asynchronous)
Classroom
NUR 51100 Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing Online only (Asynchronous) with student-arranged precepted practicum
NUR 52500  Informatics in Nursing  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 53100  Theory and Ethics for Advanced Practice Nursing  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 57400 Pathophysiologic Concepts I Online (Asynchronous)
Classroom
NUR 57500 Pathophysiologic Concepts II Online (Asynchronous)
Classroom
NUR 50710 Pathopharmacology for Nurse Educators  Online (Asynchronous)
NUR 50310 Advanced Health Assessment for Nurse Educators Online (Asynchronous)
NUR 60000 Adult-Gerontology CNS I Online (Combination of Synchronous/Asynchronous)
Classroom with some Asynchronous Online Sessions
NUR 61100 Primary Care of the Young Family Online (Asynchronous)
NUR 61800 Adult-Gerontology CNS II Online (Combination of Synchronous/Asynchronous)
Classroom with some Asynchronous Online Sessions
NUR 62200 Primary Care of the Aging Family Online (Asynchronous)
Classroom
NUR 65000 Concepts for the Nurse Executive Creating an Environment for Professional Practice  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 65100 Role of the Nursing Executive in Creating an Environment for Professional Practice  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 65300 Nursing Administration, Financial Management  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 65600 Healthcare Organization, Policy and Economics  Online only (Asynchronous)
NUR 66000 Curriculum Development in Nursing Online (Asynchronous)
NUR 66100 Theories and Principles of Teaching and Learning in Nursing Education Online (Asynchronous)
NUR 66300 Assessment and Measurement in Nursing Education Online (Asynchronous)
OBHR 63300 Human Resource Management Online (Asynchronous)

 

Core Courses for All Areas of Concentration

All graduate students complete a series of core courses that are common to all four areas of concentration.  These courses include:

  • NUR 50100 Foundations of Advanced Practice Nursing
  • NUR 50500 Sociocultural Influences on Health
  • NUR 51000 Research and Evidence Based Practice
  • NUR 52500 Informatics in Nursing
  • NUR 53100 Theoretical and Ethical Reasoning in Advanced Practice Nursing
  • NUR 65600 Healthcare Organization, Policy and Economics

Advanced Practice Core Courses: AGCNS and FNP

In addition to the MS program core courses, all AGCNS and FNP students take advanced practice core courses.  These courses include:

  • NUR 50200 Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing
  • NUR 50300 Advanced Health Assessment
  • NUR 57400 Pathophysiologic Concepts I
  • NUR 57500 Pathophysiologic Concepts II
  • NUR 51100 Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing

Following is a list of AGCNS required courses.

  • NUR 50100 Foundations of Advanced Practice in Nursing (2 credits)
  • NUR 50200 Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 50300 Advanced Health Assessment (4 credits – 3 didactic and 1 lab)
  • NUR 50500 Sociocultural Influences on Health (3 credits)
  • NUR 51000 Research and Evidence Based Nursing Practice (3 credits) (Statistics prerequisite)
  • NUR 51100 Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing (3 credits: 2 didactic and 1 practicum; 45 clock hours)
  • NUR 52500 Nursing Informatics (3 credits)
  • NUR 53100 Theoretical and Ethical Reasoning in Advanced Practice Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 57400 Pathophysiologic Concepts I (3 credits)
  • NUR 57500 Pathophysiologic Concepts II (3 credits)
  • NUR 60000 Adult-Gerontology CNS I (3 credits)
  • NUR 60100 Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum 1 (3 practicum credits; 180 clock hours)
  • NUR 61800 Adult-Gerontology CNS II (3 credits)
  • NUR 62000 Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum II (3 practicum credits; 180 clock hours)
  • NUR 65600 Health Care Organization, Policy and Economics (3 credits)
  • NUR 65800 Adult-Gerontology CNS practicum III: Clinical Synthesis (2 practicum credits; 150 clock hours)

Total number of credits = 47. Total number of practicum hours = 555

Following is a list of FNP required courses.

  • NUR 50100 Foundations of Advanced Practice in Nursing (2 credits)
  • NUR 50200 Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 50300 Advanced Health Assessment (4 credits: 3 didactic and 1 lab)
  • NUR 50500 Sociocultural Influences on Health (3 credits)
  • NUR 51000 Research and Evidence Based Nursing Practice (3 credits) (Statistics prerequisite)
  • NUR 51100 Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing (3 credits: 2 didactic and 1 practicum; 45 clock hours)
  • NUR 52500 Nursing Informatics (3 credits)
  • NUR 53100 Theoretical and Ethical Reasoning in Advanced Practice Nursing (3 credits)
  • NUR 57400 Pathophysiologic Concepts I (3 credits)
  • NUR 57500 Pathophysiologic Concepts II (3 credits)
  • NUR 61100 Primary Care of the Young Family (3 credits)
  • NUR 61300 Primary Care of the Young Family Practicum (3 practicum credits; 180 clock hours – 90 OB/GYN, 90 pediatrics)
  • NUR 62200 Primary Care of the Aging Family (3 credits)
  • NUR 62300 Primary Care of the Aging Family Practicum (3 practicum credits; 180 clock hours)
  • NUR 65600 Health Care Organization, Policy and Economics (3 credits)
  • NUR 65700 FNP Practicum: Clinical Synthesis (2 practicum credits; 150 clock hours)

Total number of credits = 47. Total number of practicum hours = 555

Admissions Policies and Procedures

The documents/items that we will need to process your application include:

  • A completed application form and payment of application fee
  • 3 professional/academic recommendations using the university’s recommendation format evaluating your scholarly potential.
  • A statement of 300 – 500 words concerning your purpose for undertaking graduate study, your professional plans, career goals related to your chosen area of concentration (Adult-Gerontology CNS, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Education or Nurse Executive), and scholarly interests.  Given the rigor and demands of graduate study, also describe your plans for balancing work, school, and personal obligations.
  • Transcripts from each university/college ever attended
  • A copy of your U.S. RN license
  • Your resume

Submit your application online using the graduate program application form.  If you are interested in applying to one of our MSN concentrations or certificate programs and live outside of Indiana, Illinois or Wisconsin, please email Online MS Program with your name, state of residency, and state of RN licensure before applying. Online instruction is not currently available in every state.  If you reside or hold your RN license in another state where you may complete your clinical hours, please confirm your state’s status with us before submitting your application and fee.

Location of Application

You can locate the link to the application program by going to the How to Apply Now page  and select “Online Application” on the right hand side of the page.

Select an Enrollment Objective on the Application Form

After accessing the application form, you will be asked to select your enrollment objective. Your options will be non-degree, master’s, or one of the post-master’s certificate programs.  If you do not already have a master’s degree in nursing, please do not select “Graduate Certificate.” This option is only for those applying to post-master’s certificate programs. After selecting master’s you will then be able to select the area of concentration: Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nurse Executive or Nursing Education.

Non-Degree

Admission as a non-degree seeking student is dependent on space availability, and is useful if you are interested in taking just one or two classes. If you are interested in this option, contact the Graduate Program Advisor before submitting an application. If you find that there will be space in the class(es) you are interested in taking, you will only need to submit proof of your baccalaureate degree (e.g. a copy of your transcript or diploma). This proof can either be uploaded into your application before submission, or sent directly to the College of Nursing. There is no application fee for a non-degree application, and you will not be required to submit the remaining admission materials (recommendation letters, statement of purpose, resume, license, or official transcripts). A criminal background check will also not be required at this time.

Master’s

You will select this option if you are applying for regular master’s degree admission into one of the four concentrations.

Post-Master’s Certificate

You will select this option if you already have a Master’s in Nursing and are applying for the Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist, or Nursing Education post-master’s certificate program.

(NOTE: We are not currently admitting applicants to the Post-Master’s FNP Certificate program.)

Submitting Recommendations through the Application System

In order to process your admission, you are required to submit three professional/academic recommendations evaluating your scholarly potential and ability to pursue graduate study.

Recommendations may be completed directly through the application system. You will just need the e-mail address of the people who will give your recommendations, and the system will contact them to complete the form. As an alternative, you can also print the recommendation form, give the form to each recommender and ask them to mail their recommendation form directly to the College of Nursing office. The mailing address is listed below.

Submitting a Statement of Purpose through the Application System

The statement of purpose consists of 300-500 words that address your purpose for undertaking graduate study, your professional plans, career goals related to your chosen area of concentration (AGCNS, FNP, Nurse Executive, or Nursing Education), scholarly interests, and describe plans to alter your professional and personal obligations during the graduate program. Because you must upload a document in order to submit your application, we suggest that you upload a document stating only the following “Statement of Purpose to follow.”  This will help expedite the application process.  Then at a later date attach your completed statement to a separate e-mail addressed to the Graduate Program Secretary for the College of Nursing.  As an alternative, you can mail your statement of purpose to the College of Nursing office.

Submitting a Resume through the Application System

Because you must upload a resume in order to submit your application, we suggest that you upload a document stating only the following “Resume to follow.” This will help expedite the application process. Then, at a later date, attach your completed resume to a separate e-mail addressed to the Graduate Program Secretary for the College of Nursing.  As an alternative, you can mail your resume to the College of Nursing office.

Completing the Process of Submitting the Application Form

Prior to submitting the application form, you will be asked to pay an application fee.  When you are satisfied that the application form is complete, hit the “submit” button.

Transcripts

Transcripts can be uploaded to the online application. If you attended any Purdue campus in the past, you can allow us to access that transcript by checking the appropriate box in the online application. However, you will still need to have all other transcripts from other universities where you took classes uploaded as well. The uploaded transcript must be from the official version of the document.  Because we are a full-disclosure program, transcripts from each university or college ever attended are required even if you did not complete a degree at that college or transferred courses in to another college.  All transcripts and/or academic documents uploaded to the online application system are considered unofficial. However, an unofficial transcript printed from your student account within an institution’s system is not an acceptable document.  For tips about uploading your transcripts into the online application review the Graduate School upload tips.  If the documents are not in English, you must upload an English translation certified by the college or university which issued it.

If admitted, you must provide official transcripts and/or academic records at the request of the graduate program.  You may choose to submit official transcripts electronically during the application process as well.  Those electronic transcripts, once received by our Graduate Studies Office, will be noted as official and uploaded into your application on your behalf.  If you are submitting electronic transcripts as part of your application package, please request that the Registrar of your institution direct the electronic transcripts to the Purdue University Northwest Graduate Studies Office.  Electronic transcripts from applicants for degrees/course work earned outside the United States are not currently accepted.​

Submitting Proof of U.S. RN Licensure

Submit a copy of your current registered nurse license(s) from to the College of Nursing office or provide us with the state and license number.

Criminal Background Checks

Criminal background checks are not part of the application process but will be required prior to the first practicum course.

College of Nursing
Purdue University Northwest, Hammond Campus
2200 169th Street
Hammond, Indiana 46323-2094

Attention:  Graduate Program Secretary

Annual application deadline for AGCNS and FNP concentrations: September 1 for Spring Start – January 15 for Fall Start

There are multiple, ongoing application deadline dates for the Nurse Executive and Nursing Education concentrations. For further information, click here.

The Graduate Admission, Progression and Graduation Sub-Committee will review all completed files after each deadline date and make recommendations for admission, wait-list, or denial for each completed application.  The committee chair will notify applicants of the committee’s decision by mail.  For those applicants who are offered admission or a wait-listed seat, the letter will confirm the program, area of concentration, any admission conditions related to the application, and the deadline date for accepting the committee’s offer.  After the Purdue University Graduate School approves the admission, the Graduate School will send applicants an email notifying them of their official admission.  All applicants should then complete a Graduate School online reply form to formally accept admission using the following steps:

  1. Log in to the Graduate School’s online application system.
  2. Under Status Update, click “View Admissions Decision” to access your decision letter.
  3. On page one of your letter, click the link “Click here to submit your response to the offer of admission.”
  4. Complete and submit the form.
  5. Your response will appear on your application status page.

If you do not meet one or more of the admission requirements you may be considered for conditional admission.  However, you need to be aware that admissions are competitive and there is no guarantee of admission on a conditional basis.  Additionally, all conditionally admitted students must take all courses through PNW for their full tenure in the program.  Conditionally admitted students who fail to meet the specified conditions of admission may be dismissed from the program.

A maximum of nine semester hours or equivalent of graduate credit may be used as transfer credit from another university. To be accepted, courses must fulfill curriculum requirements and must have been taken at a university that has national nursing accreditation. Additionally, a grade of the equivalent of 3.0 (on a 4 point scale) or higher must be present for any transfer course. One core class, NUR 51000, Research and Evidence Based Nursing Practice, all advanced core courses and all specialty courses (applies to all concentrations) must be taken at PNW.  A request for an exception to this policy will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Other core courses will be evaluated for equivalency and transferability.   You will need to submit the syllabi for all courses you wish to have considered for transfer credit by the application deadline date.

Applicants who are denied admission into the Graduate Program are allowed to appeal these decisions. Applicants who wish to appeal an admission decision should contact the Chairperson of the Admission, Progression and Graduation Committee. The Chairperson will review the appeals process with the student. This process includes a written notification of the desire to appeal and an appearance at the next scheduled Admission Progression and Graduation Committee meeting. The deadline for submitting a written notice of appeal is the twenty-first calendar day after the start of the fall or spring semester following notification of denial.

If the decision to deny admission is upheld by the Committee, applicants may submit a written appeal to the Dean of the College of Nursing. If applicants are not satisfied with the outcome of the appeal to the College of Nursing Dean, a written appeal may be sent to the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs/Provost.

Post Master’s Certificate Options

Purpose

The purpose of the Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate Program at Purdue University Northwest is to prepare qualified Master’s prepared nurses as CNSs caring for the Adult-Gerontology population. Clinical nurse specialists are advanced practice nurses who are uniquely prepared to meet complex patients’ needs for expert nursing care. Educational preparation consists of content related to a managing complex adult-gerontology patients as well as content that prepares students to influence nursing personnel and the healthcare system for the purpose of achieving safe, quality patient care. Graduates of CNS programs are able to advance the practice of nursing through expertise in their specialty and through their skills as leaders, collaborators, consultants, mentors, and innovators. They are also experts at effecting change and introducing evidence-based practice protocols into the healthcare environment.  As a result of their educational preparation and skills, CNSs exert a significant, positive influence on patient, nurse, and healthcare organizational outcomes.

Credit Hour and Clinical Contact Hour Requirements+:

The certificate requires students to complete a minimum of 14 hours and a maximum of 30 credit hours consisting of the following courses:

  • NUR 50200: Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing* – 3 credits
  • NUR 50300: Advanced Health Assessment* – 4 credits
  • NUR 57400: Pathophysiologic Concepts for Advanced Practice Nursing I* – 3 credits
  • NUR 57500: Pathophysiologic Concepts for Advanced Practice Nursing II* – 3 credits
  • NUR 51100: Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing* – 3 credits and 45 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 60000: Adult-Gerontology CNS I – 3 credits
  • NUR 60100: Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum I – 3 credits and 180 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 61800: Adult-Gerontology CNS II – 3 credits
  • NUR 62000: Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum II – 3 credits and 180 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 65800: Adult-Gerontology CNS Practicum III: Clinical Synthesis – 2 credits and 150 clinical contact hours

*May be waived if student has taken a comparable graduate course at Purdue University Northwest or at another accredited nursing program within 5 years prior to application to this program.

 

 

Purpose

The purpose of the Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate Program at Purdue University Northwest is to increase the numbers of family nurse practitioners prepared to provide primary care. Primary care is currently undergoing a period of expansion in order to meet the increasing healthcare needs of our nation’s citizens. The post-master’s certificate program at Purdue University Northwest exists to address the need for increased numbers of primary care providers. The target audience for this program includes mater’s prepared nurses that are interested in becoming family nurse practitioners.

Credit Hour and Clinical Contact Hour Requirements+

The certificate requires students to complete a minimum of 14 credits and a maximum of 30 credit hours consisting of the following courses:

  • NUR 50200: Pharmacotherapeutics for Advanced Practice Nursing* – 3 credits
  • NUR 50300: Advanced Health Assessment* – 4 credits
  • NUR 57400: Pathophysiologic Concepts for Advanced Practice Nursing I* – 3 credits
  • NUR 57500: Pathophysiologic Concepts for Advanced Practice Nursing II* – 3 credits
  • NUR 51100: Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing* – 3 credits and 45 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 61100: Primary Care of the Young Family – 3 credits
  • NUR 61300: Primary Care of the Young Family Practicum – 3 credits and 180 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 62200: Primary Care of the Aging Family – 3 credits
  • NUR 62300: Primary Care of the Aging Family Practicum – 3 credits and 180 clinical contact hours
  • NUR 65700: FNP Practicum Clinical Synthesis – 2 credits and 150 clinical contact hours

* May be waived if student has taken a comparable course at Purdue University Northwest or another accredited nursing program with 5 years prior to application to this program.

The application can be found through the on-line application program described in the section on “Application Procedures.”

The admission process for the Family Nurse Practitioner and Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Certificate Program parallels that for students seeking a Master’s Degree in Nursing. Specific requirements are:

  1. Master’s degree in nursing from an accredited institution or admission and enrollment in a masters degree program in nursing.
  2. Minimum graduate GPA of 3.0/4.0 with the possibility of conditional admission for applicants who do not meet this requirement.
  3. Graduate School requirements for non-native speakers of English.
  4. Evidence of current registered nurse licensure within the United States of America.
  5. A minimum of one year or 1,500 hours of experience as a registered nurse.

The application can be found through the on-line application program described in the section on “Application Procedures”.

The application process and procedure is the same as the process used for admission to the master’s program. Please see Application Procedures in this handbook for specific information.

Degree seeking applicants must submit applications online. You can locate the link to the application program by going to How to Apply Now and select “Online Application” on the right hand side of the page.  Specific requirements for admission can be found in the Application Procedures section of this handbook.

The Admission, Progression and Graduation Subcommittee of the Graduate Committee of the College reviews completed application materials. The College forwards its recommendation and admission conditions if applicable to the Graduate School Office for review and final action. Students receive from the Graduate School official notification of the action taken.

This classification is intended for those who wish to pursue study beyond the baccalaureate degree but do not have specific degree objectives.  It is not intended to be a form of probationary admission to a regular degree program. It is possible for those registered in this classification to be considered for admission to the Graduate School as a regular graduate student once they submit a degree seeking application and required application materials.

If an individual in this classification is later admitted as a regular graduate student, not more than twelve hours of credit may be applied to an advanced degree program. No course in which a grade of less than “B” has been received will be permitted on a plan of study if the course is taken while enrolled as a non-degree registrant. Non-degree registrants may be required to secure consent from each of the departments in which they would like to register for courses.  Ability to register for courses may depend on space availability.

Honor Code

Students enrolled in the graduate nursing program must adhere to the ANA Code of Ethics and conform to the Purdue University Northwest Honor Code  and the Purdue University Northwest Academic Integrity Policy. Students are responsible for becoming familiar with and adhering to the policies outlined in the documents. Students must be aware that academic dishonesty in any form may result in an automatic failure in the course and a referral to the Dean of Students. A letter describing the incident will be placed in your student file. Further disciplinary action will be pursued according to the policies of the university.

Because of the seriousness of plagiarism, also refer to the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) for definitions and examples of plagiarism and ways to avoid it.

Student Conduct

Students in the College of Nursing are expected to adhere to the ANA Code of Ethics.  The Code of Ethics for Nurses is a guide for carrying out nursing responsibilities in a manner consistent with quality nursing care and the ethical obligations of the profession. Students are responsible for acquainting themselves and adhering to the policies outlined in the document.

Students in the CON are also expected to adhere to the PNW Civility Code as stated below:

Purdue University Northwest places a priority on student learning. We value the inherent worth and dignity of every person, thereby fostering a community of mutual respect. We believe that in order to achieve these ideals, all Purdue University Northwest students are expected, while in the role as student or representative of the university, to exhibit and practice civil behaviors, defined as behaviors that:

  1. Respect faculty, staff, fellow students, guests, and all  university property, policies, rules and regulations
  2. Take responsibility for one’s choices and actions
  3. Accept consequences of one’s inappropriate choices and actions
  4. Communicate in a professional and courteous manner in all forms, and at all times, whether verbal, non- verbal or written.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Students have the right to a learning environment free of disruptive behaviors.  Students are expected to comply with regulations regarding civility, attendance, and appropriate classroom behavior.

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities

Faculty has the right and responsibility to define expected classroom behavior consistent with University policy, as well as address and manage disruptive student behavior.

With the enactment of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), the idea that patients have the right to privacy and confidentiality became more than just an ethical obligation of health care providers, students and health care organizations; it is the law. The right to privacy is essential to patients and families. Under no circumstances should any student ever release or remove confidential patient information from the practicum setting or discuss it with anyone unless it is needed for treatment of the patient.

Each clinical agency has strict guidelines regarding patient information, including computer access, security, documentation, and patient confidentiality. These specific guidelines are available for each agency, and several ask students to sign a confidentiality statement.

Violations of the Guidelines

Violation of these guidelines can result in disciplinary action by the agency, the assignment of a failing grade for a nursing course, and/or dismissal from the course and/or nursing program. The following guidelines in general reflect expectations of all students in all agencies.

  1. Patient medical records are not to be removed from their location.
  2. Students granted access to patient medical records are accountable at all times for the protection of the record and its contents while in their possession.
  3. Sharing medical record/patient information with family, friends, and staff not directly involved in the patient’s care is prohibited.
  4. Students are not allowed to remove medical records from the patient care area.
  5. Reproducing by photocopying, cutting and pasting, taking a picture, or printing any part of the medical record for a student’s purpose is strictly prohibited. Data cannot be saved to any device.
  6. When referring to patients in written work for schoolwork purposes, students must use patient initials only. Keep all identifying information to a minimum.
  7. Any identifiable patient information should be properly destroyed before the student leaves the unit.
  8. Students must follow HIPAA guidelines at all times as outlined by each clinical agency and federal regulations.
  9. Professional standards expect that student nurses withhold discussing, in any format, (verbally, in writing, via social media), any patient situations and confidences outside the clinical course context. Situations may only be discussed in private, for the purpose of learning, as directed by the clinical instructor.

Rationale:

The College of Nursing recognizes that social networking websites and applications including, but not limited to, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, are an important and timely means of communication. However, students must be aware that posting any information about patients or clinical agencies attended for clinical is prohibited and may be illegal under HIPAA guidelines and subject to disciplinary actions. Violation of existing statutes and administrative regulations may expose the offender to criminal and civil liability, and the punishment for violations may include fines and imprisonment. Offenders also may be subject to adverse academic actions that may include immediate removal from the clinical setting, referral to the Dean of Students, course failure and dismissal from the College of Nursing.

Privacy and Confidentiality:

Official University communications sent by e-mail are subject to the same public information, privacy, and records retention requirements and policies as other official University communications. Also, any reference to a client, colleague, faculty, or staff nurse on any social media outlet is not appropriate (see American Nurses Association’s social media statement), including “disparaging remarks” even if the person is not identified by name. “Promptly report a breach” (per ANA) to your faculty. Please review the following national and international guidelines regarding the proper use of social media:

Clinical & In-Class Procedure:

Please refer to the syllabus for possible course-specific guidelines. Clinical students must uphold the Social Media Policy guidelines. Individual clinical faculty members may also make additional requests regarding use of technology during clinical according to clinical agency policy.

All students enrolled in the program must keep their RN license current/active.  Students must also maintain residency in the state they were living in when they were admitted to the program.  If students move to another state, there is no guarantee that they will be able to complete the program.

Email is the preferred and quickest method of communication as it provides a written record, time stamp, and can be sent directly to the people that can best assist in a particular situation. Additional communications between students and university personnel may be arranged directly.

The College of Nursing requires that current students only use their PNW student email accounts to contact university personnel.

The purpose of this policy is to notify students of the Purdue University Northwest requirement that all students in the College who are enrolled in a clinical course submit to a drug screen as outlined in this policy and test negative before engaging in clinical activity associated with a College of Nursing Program.

The University’s Alcohol-and-Drug-Free Campus Workplace Policy prohibits the unauthorized use, possession, sale, conveyance, distribution, and manufacture of controlled substances, as well as being under the influence of legally prescribed drugs that prevent an individual from performing the essential functions of his or her job or where the individual poses a direct threat while using those drugs.  Clinical agencies affiliated with the University also have drug and alcohol policies and are requiring that nursing students comply with their drug testing policies in a similar manner to their employees. Safety in the delivery of care to patient/client populations is the basis for drug testing. Clinical sites have the right to refuse any student for clinical placement based on concerns about that student’s ability to deliver safe practice.

It is the policy of Purdue University Northwest to comply with federal and state laws and regulations dealing with the usage and detection of drugs. This policy is subject to change at the sole discretion of the University and is meant to supplement other relevant University policies, including but not limited to, the Alcohol- and Drug-Free Campus and Workplace Policy, Executive Memorandum C-44. This policy is in addition to any drug and alcohol testing policies and procedures at the clinical sites, and while students are engaging in clinical activities at hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, or other facilities on behalf of the College, the drug and alcohol testing policies and procedures of the hospital, clinic, nursing home, or facility will govern.

Policy and Procedures

All nursing students will be required to submit to a drug screen at the expense of the student, and test negative for drugs  at certain times in their nursing education:

  • prior to participation in a clinical course in a College of Nursing Program,
  • annually,
  • as requested by the clinical facility

Unannounced drug testing may occur based on reasonable suspicion.

If a student’s drug screen is positive but the student provides proof that prescribed medications (a copy of the prescription or verification from the healthcare provider that they are taking medication under supervision) lead to a positive drug screen, the College of Nursing will make record of such. All positive drug tests will be reported to the clinical site in an anonymous manner.  If present, prescription verifications will accompany any positive drug screens also in an anonymous manner.  The clinical site policy will determine whether a student may participate in the scheduled clinical rotation.

By participating in the drug screening process, the student is authorizing release of the drug test results in accordance with this policy.

Negative Test Result

If the drug test is negative, and pending all other requisite acceptances and approvals, the student will be allowed to participate in clinical activities.

Refusal to Test

If a student fails to produce the requested sample by the date and time designated, the student will be treated as if the test result was positive.

Positive Test Result

Any student who engages in conduct prohibited by this policy, tests positive for drugs, or who does not comply with any notice, request, or procedure provided for hereunder, shall be withdrawn from all clinical courses, and may be subject to discipline, up to and including dismissal from the Program, on the basis that the student is not able to meet course objectives for classroom and/or clinical requirements.  If the Student is not dismissed from the Program, the Student will not be permitted to participate in Clinical Activities until the Student undergoes the rehabilitation process set forth below. In addition, future participation in Clinical Activities is dependent on the length of time needed for the rehabilitation process and space availability as described below.

Rehabilitation

If the Student is not dismissed from the Program, the Student will be required to undergo a professional evaluation by the Counseling Center or by a mutually agreed upon independent, certified drug and alcohol counselor for evaluation and treatment at the student’s expense. The student must complete the treatment prescribed by the approved counselor at the student’s expense. Upon completion of the treatment plan, the counselor shall conduct a follow-up evaluation and issue a report to the Dean of the College of Nursing.  If the counselor reports that the student successfully completed the treatment plan and is ready to engage in Clinical Activities, the student will be tested with a new drug screen at the Student’s expense. If the Drug test is positive, the Student will be dismissed from the Program.  If the Drug test result is negative, the student will be eligible to enroll in clinical coursework depending on space availability and acceptance by clinical sites.  Because of the time that is required to complete treatment and testing, it is possible that the Student will be delayed and need to re-work his/her plan of study with an academic counselor.

After a student has completed the required treatment plan prescribed by the certified drug and alcohol counselor, has a negative Drug screen and is participating in Clinical Activities, unannounced drug testing may occur periodically, based on reasonable suspicion, until the student graduates from the Program. The Dean of the College of Nursing will notify the student of the designated time and place for the drug screening which will be completed, at the student’s expense, on the day of notification. If a positive Drug screen occurs, or if the student fails to complete a drug test as requested or otherwise comply with this policy, the student will be dismissed from the Program.

Confidentiality

The College of Nursing and the University will take reasonable measures to ensure individual privacy under this Policy including, without limitation, keeping all Drug test results confidential to the extent possible.  Drug test results will be released in accordance with this policy and applicable federal and state laws and regulations.

Grievance and Appeal Procedures

Pursuant to the University’s Bill of Student Rights, any student can seek redress for any complaints related to the application or enforcement of this Policy through applicable University grievance policies and procedures, including Program appeal procedures.

Access to Records

The College of Nursing and the University will maintain records relating to this policy as required by law.  Upon written request to the Dean of the College of Nursing, a student will be provided copies of records pertaining to his or her Drug tests. The University may charge the student a reasonable fee for copying these records.

Questions

Questions about this policy should be directed to the Dean of the College of Nursing.

The following is a checklist of minimum computer hardware/software requirements and basic computing skills that are necessary for all students.

Hardware

  • 4 GB of RAM
  • Windows 7 or higher operating system for a PC
  • OSX 10.9 or higher for a MAC
  • At least one USB port
  • WiFi capability
  • High speed internet connection (preferred)
  • 250 GB or larger of storage (either internal, external or cloud)

*Chromebooks/iPads are not recommended as students may experience software incompatibility issues.

 Software

*PNW students may be eligible for discounted software. More details are available at the Customer Service Center.

Required Computer Skills

  • Keyboard and use a mouse
  • Basic windows functions (maximize, minimize, move windows)
  • Word processing
  • Create text
  • Cut, copy, paste
  • Manipulate fonts
  • Name, rename and save files to a variety of storage devices
  • Create tables
  • Insert an object
  • Create a PowerPoint presentation
  • Create directories/folders, manage files
  • Attach files, send e-mail
  • Use “help”
  • Install an application from CD-ROM
  • Access the Internet
  • Search the Internet
  • Identify the type of Internet source
  • Download a file/application
  • Install a downloaded application

*Computer support can be found at the Office of Instructional Technology.

Progression Policies

The College of Nursing Graduate Program has established the following grading scale to be used for all courses taught in the Graduate Nursing Program:

Number
Grade
Letter
Grade
Quality
Point
90-100 A 4.0
80-89 B 3.0
70-79 C 2.0
60-69 D 1.0
59 or lower F 0.0

Students must obtain a minimum grade of “B” in all required nursing courses. Additionally, graduate students must have a final graduation grade point average of a “B” or better on the approved plan of study in order to receive your degree.

The Electronic Plan of Study (EPOS) is an academic contract between the graduate student, the student’s faculty chair, College of Nursing Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, and the Graduate School.  On the EPOS, students will list the coursework they must complete/completed that fulfill the requirements of the graduate degree. They also choose a faculty chair.   Students must submit their EPOS and have it finalized/approved prior to the start of the last semester of the program.  Failure to file the EPOS in a timely fashion may prevent the student from graduating upon completing their final semester.  Students can find instructions for submitting their EPOS in the program tab located in myPNW  and/or by contacting the Graduate Program Academic Advisor for assistance.

Probation

Graduate students in degree-seeking status who receive a grade of C or below in any required course or whose cumulative graduate program GPA falls below 3.0 (a B average) will be placed on probation, indicating serious academic difficulty. Students on probation must repeat within one calendar year the course in which they received the grade of C or below. Students will be dismissed from the program if a grade of C or below is received for the repeated class.

Repeating Courses

If a degree-seeking student receives a grade of C or below in a required class, the class must be repeated within one calendar year. A class may be repeated only one time and a grade of B or higher must be achieved. The maximum number of different courses toward the degree that may be repeated is two.

Dismissal from the Program

Degree-seeking students will be dismissed from the graduate program when any of the following occur:

  • A conditionally admitted student fails to meet admission conditions.
  • A student on probation fails to repeat a required nursing course within one calendar year after receiving a grade of C or below.
  • A student receives a grade of C or below when repeating a required nursing course.
  • A student received a grade of C or below on a third required nursing course.

In matters of integrity, clinical judgment, plagiarism, or other situations that compromise the ANA Code of Ethics, the Purdue University Northwest Student Honor Code, and/or the Graduate Student Standards of Work, the graduate faculty of the CON may place a student on probation or recommend dismissal from the program to the Dean of Students.

The responsibility for assessing student achievement and assigning grades rests with the course instructor and, except for unusual circumstances, the course grade given is final. If a student has concerns or complaints about grading or clinical evaluations, he/she may choose to proceed with the following:

  • discuss these concerns with the faculty member responsible for teaching the course.
  • if not satisfied with the outcome of this discussion, he/she should bring the concerns to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies in Nursing.
  • if the situation is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction after talking with the Associate Dean, students should follow the university’s grade appeal procedures.

Students may appeal decisions of dismissal from their program of study for scholastic performance or violations of the code of conduct.  Students who wish to appeal a decision related to program dismissal should:

  • Meet with the College of Nursing’s Associate Dean for Graduate Studies to discuss the situation.
  • If students want to continue the appeals process, they will submit to the College of Nursing’s Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in Nursing a written notification of the desire to appeal and a request for reconsideration explaining why the student should be given an opportunity to continue in the program. The deadline for submitting the written notice of appeal is the twenty-first calendar day after the start of the fall or spring semester following notification of dismissal.
  • Students will appear at the next scheduled Admission Progression and Graduation Committee meeting to address the request for reconsideration.
  • If the dismissal decision is upheld by the Committee, students may submit a written appeal to the Dean of the College of Nursing.
  • If students were dismissed due to academic reasons and are not satisfied with the outcome of the meeting with the Dean, they may submit a written appeal to the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs/Provost. For students dismissed due to conduct violations, a further appeal can be submitted to the Office of the Dean of Students.

Students are admitted to an identified area of concentration and transfer between areas of concentration is discouraged. However, if students are interested in changing to an area of concentration that differs from the admission area of concentration, they should submit a written request and a new purpose statement to their academic advisor.  These documents will be taken to the next scheduled Graduate Program Admissions Committee meeting. Permission to change areas of concentration may be given if space is available in the requested concentration.

The time limit to complete the MS program is 6 years from the term of admission.  In addition, if 5 years elapse between taking courses and resuming work toward a degree, the Purdue University Graduate School prohibits including any of the courses taken prior to the period of inactivity on the plan of study.  Therefore, required courses that are more than 5 years old would need to be repeated.

If, following admission, students wish to withdraw from the program, they should submit a written notice to the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, College of Nursing, Purdue University Northwest, 2200 169th Street, Hammond, IN 46323.

All previously admitted graduate students who have not registered for three consecutive semesters must submit a re-entry application and any application materials that may have expired.  The Graduate Admissions Committee will review the application and make a decision regarding the re-entry request.  Note that re-entry is not guaranteed and if readmitted to the program, students may be required to adhere to any curriculum changes occurring during the period of inactivity.  The application can be found through the on-line application program described in the Application Procedures section of the Graduate Student Handbook.

Registration Information

Class schedules can be located under the student tab on the Purdue University Northwest website.

Students should watch the Purdue University Northwest website for specific dates for registration and withdrawal.

Priority registration is held at announced times during the semester preceding the desired classes. Priority registration enables currently enrolled students to register for the forthcoming semester or summer session. The academic advisor will post an announcement or send an email to students regarding the current semester’s registration procedures.  In an effort to accommodate working RNs most of the advising sessions are held via email or telephone appointment. However, students can schedule an appointment with their advisor by calling the College of Nursing office at (219) 989-2815.  If traditional students have discussed their plan of study with their advisor and know what classes they need to take, they are encouraged to self-register on-line using myPNW.  Online cohort students will not be able to self-register and should watch for correspondence from their advisor regarding registration progress.

Open registration usually occurs during the week prior to the beginning of classes each semester. Those students who were unable to register during priority registration should use open registration. This time period can also be used by students who have already registered and need to make schedule adjustments (add/drops).

It is possible to register for classes during the first week or two of the semester. Registration during this period is subject to the availability of classes, approval of the advisor and the faculty teaching the class, and payment of a late fee.

Financial Aid

Students can arrange financial assistance through the Office of Financial Aid and Student Accounts. Further information is available on the Office of Financial Aid  website.

A limited number of scholarships are available for graduate nursing students. The deadline for applying is generally in March of the academic year preceding the awards.  Amounts of money awarded and eligibility requirements vary. For further information and applications, contact the Office of Financial Aid and Student Accounts at (219) 989-2301.  Further information is also available on the Office of Financial Aid.

A limited number of Graduate Administrative/Professional Assistantship positions are available for graduate students interested in providing a supportive role in scholarly and/or teaching activities with nursing faculty.  Assignments vary and are based on College needs. Remuneration includes substantial tuition reimbursement and a monthly stipend.

To be eligible for appointment, an individual must be enrolled as a regular graduate student and remain registered during the entire appointment period. Appointment is on a quarter time basis and is equivalent to 10 hours/week during the fall and spring semesters.

Announcements for positions are sent annually to all eligible students. Students interested in applying should submit a written resume to the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies.  Appointments are made based on the applicant’s qualifications and the needs of the College.

College Activities and Resources

Graduate students are needed to participate in the following College of Nursing Committees:

  1. Graduate Committee: Provides general guidance to the graduate program; develops, evaluates, and revises the curriculum; initiates and evaluates program changes and course offerings; determines curriculum policies including admission, progression and graduation: makes resource recommendations; analyzes outcome data related to graduate programs; and contributes to development of accreditation reports.
  2. Student Affairs Committee: Coordinates student-related social functions; reviews policies regarding student health and welfare; serves as a forum for student interaction for non-academic matters; nominates student representatives to College committees, provides input into College Grade appeal process.
  3. College Curricula and Assessment Committee: Approves curriculum proposals across programs; approves admission, progression and graduation requirements across programs; assesses and maintains effectiveness of College of Nursing academic programs; and evaluates program-specific outcome assessment data.
  4. Resources and Budget Committee: Recommends and prioritizes acquisition of professional books and journals for the library collection, audiovisual materials, computer hardware/software, simulation equipment, and other supports for educational functions of the College; secures support for acquiring instructional materials; serves as an advisory group to the university library and the College of Nursing Learning and Simulation Center; and provides input to the Dean on the use of the College’s discretionary funds.

Student input is of great importance to the faculty, and students are encouraged to participate and volunteer to serve on these committees.

Students can find information pertinent to the College of Nursing graduate program through the MSN or DNP tab in the myPNW portal. At this site, students can find announcements, College of Nursing forms, information related to specific courses including practicum course clinical requirements.  We encourage students to visit this site regularly for information and announcements.  Examples of information and announcements include registration, special events, and program/policy updates. Students should also regularly check their Purdue Northwest student e-mail accounts for e-mail from the Graduate Program Advisor, Secretary, and staff from other university offices and departments.

Practicum Requirements and Information

Adult-Gerontology CNS and FNP students must have completed the equivalent of one year or 1,500 hours of experience as a registered nurse prior to enrolling in NUR 51100, Concepts and Applications of Health Promotion for Advanced Practice in Nursing.

Purdue University Northwest, College of Nursing

APRN Practicum Requirements: When to Submit and How

All APRN students are responsible for submitting the following information prior to the first practicum course and as needed.  Deadlines for submitting practicum information:

April 1 for Summer Practicum
June 1 for Fall Practicum
November 1 for Spring Practicum

Note: Students will not be allowed to begin practicum experiences until all practicum requirements are met. Additionally, students must continue to update practicum requirements as needed in order to remain in practicum settings.

Following is a list of all information to submit and the corresponding submission schedule.

  • AGCNS students will purchase CastleBranch’s Medical Document Manager for a one-time fee of $35.00 to submit required documents. To purchase, go to castlebranch.com and place order using package code PW94im
    • Note, results of services and training purchased through CastleBranch will automatically upload.
  • FNP students will use Typhon to submit required documents and manage clinical hours. See “An Introduction to Typhon for FNP Students” located in the MSN-APRN portal for information about purchasing Typhon.

Four months before the first practicum, both AGCNS and FNP students will access CastleBranch at castlebranch.com to purchase the required criminal background check. If not available through other means, students may also access CastleBranch to purchase:

  • 10-panel drug screen
  • HIPAA eLearning module
  • OSHA eLearning module

Start an order by selecting “Place Order” (no initial login needed). Enter the appropriate package code listed below and submit.

 

Required Information

When to Submit
Prior to 1st practicum Annually Within 1 month before expiration
Criminal background check: Cost = $67.75. Go to castlebranch.com and place order using package code PW94grad.

 

Must complete within 4 months prior to first practicum. Only CastleBranch background checks will be accepted. We cannot accept background checks completed through places of employment. Note: some practicum sites may require repeated background checks.

 

X

10-panel drug screen: Cost = $40.00 when ordered through CastleBranch. May complete by going to castlebranch.com and placing an order using package code: PW94dt

 

If not completed through CastleBranch, upload results. Must complete within 4 months prior to first practicum. Note: some practicum sites may require repeated drug screens.

X
HIPAA E-Learning module: One-time purchase of $10.00. May complete by going to castlebranch.com and placing an order using package code: PW94hipaa

 

If not completed through CastleBranch, upload validation of HIPAA training.

X
OSHA E-Learning module: Yearly purchase of $10.00. May complete by going to castlebranch.com and placing an order using package code: PW94osha

 

If not completed through CastleBranch, upload validation of OSHA training.

X X
Validation of CPR certification. Certification must be from the American Heart Association and must be a healthcare provider course. X X
Communicable Diseases and Disease Exposure Policy, signed. See this section of portal for form. X
Validation of RN License that corresponds to state where practicum will occur X X
Proof of health insurance X X
Proof of influenza vaccine X X (due by Oct. 31)
Physical Examination Summary, signed. See this section of portal for form. X
TB testing/screening: QuantiFERON-TB Gold test results. X X (may use TST for annual updates)
Titers:

•       Hepatitis B titer or signed statement of refusal of vaccine. See this section of portal for statement.

 

X

•               Measles (rubeola), mumps, rubella (MMR) titer X
•       Varicella titer X
Proof of polio vaccination (3 dose series of IPV or OPV). If a vaccination record is not available, obtain a single lifetime booster dose of IPV for adults and submit proof of booster.  

X

Proof of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) booster as adult (within past 5 years) X
Universal Precautions Policy and Instruction Acknowledgment, signed. See this section of portal for policy. X X
Practicum Information Form to be emailed to the College of Nursing Graduate Program Secretary. Note: this form does not need to be uploaded into CastleBranch or Typhon. See this section of portal for form. Submit before each practicum experience. If more than one preceptor in a semester, submit a separate form for each preceptor.

 

All students enrolled in practicum courses are provided liability insurance purchased by the University at the time of registration. Students will receive verification of coverage through PNW email.

All students in the Graduate Nursing Program must present evidence of registered nurse licensure for all states in which they plan to pursue their practica experiences.

Students need to undergo a comprehensive health examination performed by a healthcare provider no longer than 6 months prior to the start of the first practicum course. The healthcare provider should document a summary of the health examination on the Student Physical Examination Summary form.

All students, prior to beginning residency courses (with the exception of the Health Policy Residency), must meet immunization requirements as outlined on the Residency Requirements and Submission Deadlines section of the handbook. The College of Nursing document entitled “Communicable Diseases and Disease Exposure Policy” must be carefully read and adhered to.

All above policies and forms are located in the “Residency Information and Forms” drop-down menu within the Practicum Forms and Information Section of the DNP tab in the myPNW portal.

Before beginning each practicum experience, there are several steps that each student needs to take. Each step is listed below:

    1. Select area of focus based on course requirements and/or professional goals. Note: Faculty are available for guidance in the selection process.
    2. Write tentative behavioral objectives that are congruent with course objectives. Refer to the information in this section of the handbook for further information
    3. Select a preceptor. Points to consider:
      • Acceptance by preceptor of the concept of advanced practice nursing
      • Willingness to serve as preceptor.
      • Size, type and quality of practice setting.
      • Match of preceptor to the nature of the required experience.
      • Qualifications of the preceptor: experience, credentials, type of preceptor
      • Faculty prefer that you obtain your practicum experience at a location that is different from where you are employed. However, if it is not feasible for you to locate a preceptor and perform your practicum at a different site or facility, you should consult with your program coordinator about the possibility of completing your practicum at your place of employment.

Note that if you stay within your place of employment for practicum, your direct supervisor cannot be your preceptor and you may not complete practicum hours during work time. Also the preceptor cannot be a family member or a personal friend.

      • No more than three clinical sites may be used during a single semester to fulfill course requirements.
      • For FNP students, the site must have a certified advanced practice nurse with prescriptive authority and minimum of one year of clinical experience and/or physician willing to act as a preceptor for the student. The preferred experience is with a nurse practitioner, particularly during the first practicum course, NUR 51100. At least one preceptor during the program must be a Family Nurse Practitioner.
    1. Hold an initial meeting with the preceptor. Points to consider:
      • Discuss goals and objectives of experience and provide a copy of your objectives
      • Provide a current copy of your vita
      • Arrange for orientation to the practice setting
      • Determine a schedule most beneficial to both
    2. Submit required forms. See the “Required Practicum Forms” section of this handbook for further information.
    3. Note that you will not be able to begin your practicum until all letters of agreement and/or contracts have been completed.  Your role in this process is to supply the College with accurate information about your preceptor and the person within the agency who is responsible for practicum placements.  The College is responsible for sending placement letters and relaying information to the university’s contracts office to begin a new contract or update an existing contract.

 

Student Responsibilities

  • Prepare personal learning objectives and submit them to faculty during the first week of class.
  • On the first day of your practicum, give your preceptor a copy of the course objectives, your personal objectives, the clinical time sheet and your clinical evaluation tool.
  • Arrange for an on-site conferences/visits with preceptor and faculty member.
  • Collaborate with and seek guidance from your preceptor in order to meet practicum objectives.
  • Discuss your progress with preceptor.
  • Continue to evaluate your progress toward meeting course and personal objectives.
  • Assume responsibility and accountability for practicum requirements. Specific responsibilities include:
  • Remain aware of deadlines and submit required materials to the Graduate Program Secretary.
  • Maintain a professional appearance, behavior and etiquette. This includes but is not limited to: no texting or personal phone calls during the clinical practicum experience; arriving on time; and staying as long as necessary to complete practicum obligations.
  • Notify your preceptor if you are unable to appear at a scheduled clinical experience or if you are not able to arrive on time.
  • Notify your clinical instructor if you change sites or if you need to be absent from a scheduled clinical practicum. Notify your clinical instructor within 24 hours, per email, if you are absent from clinical practicum for any reason.

Preceptor Responsibilities

  • Orient the student to the practice setting.
  • Assist the student in selecting appropriate means for meeting course and personal objectives.
  • Provide validation and feedback pertaining to student experiences.
  • Provide faculty with feedback on student’s performance.
  • Provide feedback and contribute to the evaluation of the student’s clinical performance.

Faculty Responsibilities

  • Provide guidance and supervision for the student during the preceptorship.
  • Arrange conferences with student at the beginning, middle and end of the semester or as needed or requested.
  • Make on-site/telephone visits.
  • Assist the student in solving clinical and interactional problems during on-site visits, conferences, and seminar discussions.
  • Maintain communication with preceptors and other agency personnel.
  • Evaluate the student’s practicum performance. Practicum evaluation criteria may include:
    1. observations during on-site visits
    2. assigned materials
    3. ongoing contact with preceptor
    4. ongoing contact with student
    5. degree of attainment of course and personal objectives

Students will purchase a standard lab coat and name tag to wear in  residency settings that take place in healthcare facilities.  Purchasing instructions are located in the Residency Forms and Information Section of the DNP tab in the myPNW portal.

A large component of graduate study focuses on discussion and exchange of ideas. The graduate nursing faculty, therefore, expect that each student will recognize his/her responsibility to professional colleagues and actively participate in all online courses, on-campus courses as applicable, and all practicum experiences.

If a graduate nursing student is unable to attend a classroom or laboratory session, the need for remedial study will be assessed on an individual basis or according to requirements set forth by the course faculty member.

In the case of an absence from a practicum experience, both the clinical facility preceptor and the responsible faculty member are to be notified by the student prior to the scheduled experience.

A behavioral objective is a learning outcome stated in measurable terms, which gives direction to the learner’s experience and becomes the basis for student evaluation.

Objectives may vary in several respects. They may be general or specific, concrete or abstract, cognitive, affective, or psychomotor. Cognitive objectives emphasize intellectual outcomes, such as knowledge, understanding, and thinking skills. Affective objectives emphasize feeling and emotion, such as interests, values, attitudes, appreciation, and methods of adjustment. Psychomotor objectives emphasize motor skills, such as physical assessment skills and administration of chemotherapy.

Points in writing behavioral objectives:

  1. Begin each behavioral objective with a verb. The critical aspect of any behavioral objective is the verb selected to indicate expected behavior from learning activities.
  2. State each objective in terms of learner performance. A behavioral objective is one that is considered to be observable and measurable. Behavior is generally construed to be an action of an individual that can be seen, felt, or heard by another person.
  3. State each objective so that it includes only one general learning outcome.

Examples of objectives

At the graduate level of nursing education, it is expected that learning objectives will be general, abstract, and cognitive or affective. Examples of appropriate objectives for graduate students are as follows:

  • Cognitive: Create an assessment tool based on a nursing theory for patients experiencing pain.
  • Cognitive: Evaluate the usefulness of nursing research in clinical practice.
  • Affective: Accept professional responsibility for change in problem clinical situations.

Illustrative verbs for stating specific learning objectives:

Design Compare Decide
Generalize Predict Defend
Criticize Simplify Evaluate
Modify Synthesize Explain
Analyze Systematize Revise
Appraise Conclude Formulate
Combine Contrast Plan

Many references are available concerning Behavioral Objectives. The materials in this guide were taken from:  Gronlund, N. E. (2004). Writing instructional objectives for teaching and assessment (7th ed.).  Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Merrill Prentice Hall.