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Practical Nursing Certificate

Effective Fall 2013

Gainful Employment Data

Length: 3 Semesters (one year)

Purpose

The certificate in practical nursing is designed to prepare selected students to qualify as practical nurse members of the health team in a variety of health service facilities. On successful completion of the program students are eligible to apply to take the NCLEX-PN (National Council Licensure Exam-Practical Nurse) which is the currently approved licensing exam for practical nursing in Virginia.

Occupational Objectives

Employment opportunities for the licensed Practical Nurse include nursing and staff positions in clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, health departments, home health agencies, prisons, and physicians’ offices.

Admission Requirements and Prerequisites

PN program and application information

In addition to the requirements for admission to the college, the applicant must meet the following prerequisites for admission to the practical nursing program:

  1. Graduation from high school or satisfactory completion of the General Education Diploma (GED).
  2. Completion of college placement tests in reading, writing, and mathematics.
  3. Completed all applicable developmental courses (MTT modules 1-3 completed and eligible to take MTH 126) and ENF 3 (eligible to take ENG 111.);
  4. Completion of high school biology or BIO 101 with a C or better average.
  5. Cumulative grade point average of 2.0.
  6. The Nursing Pre-entrance Exam within 3 years.
  7. Completion of the special physical and dental examination required for students in Health Technology, including the immunization schedule. Applicants must be free of any physical or mental condition that might adversely affect their acceptance or performance as nurses.

The Virginia Board of Nursing has the authority to deny licensure to any applicant who has violated any of the provisions of 54.1-3007 of the Code of Virginia. Any student entering the nursing program who has committed any illegal offenses other than minor traffic violations should discuss these matters with the nursing program head for clarification prior to admission.

In all cases, the recommendation of the admission committee is the final determinant for admission to the Practical Nursing Program. All admission requirements must be completed prior to entry into the program.

The Practical Nursing Program is open to men and women who provide evidence of interest, motivation, and aptitude in the area of health care, and especially in direct patient care.

The Practical Nursing Application Packet can be found here.

Program Progression

Students must complete all support courses either prior to or concurrently with the appropriate nursing course as indicated in the curriculum plan. Students must complete all curricular courses with a C or better.

The student is required to complete a sequence of courses and learning experiences provided at the college and selected community agencies such as special and general hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, physicians’ offices and comparable facilities. The nursing faculty will observe and evaluate the student’s suitability for nursing and direct patient care. A student may not withdraw from a nursing course and return to it more than one time.

More detailed information is provided in the Practical Nursing Student Handbook which is provided to all students accepted into the program, and is available in the director’s office for review.

Clinical Contracts

Individual contracts are in effect with each affiliate clinical agency. These contracts differ in their requirements for students. The general stipulations are as follows:

  • Clinical agencies reserve the right to dismiss a student from their agency at any time with due cause. This will be done with advance notice except in an emergency.
  • Proper uniform must be worn.
  • Published policies of the clinical agency must be adhered to.
  • Immunizations must be current.
  • Student releases the hospital, its agents, and its employees from any liability for any injury or death to himself or damage to his property arising out of the clinical agreement or use of hospital’s facilities.
  • Students are financially responsible for any medical care they require while in the clinical setting.

Contracts for each agency are available in the nursing office, and may be reviewed by students upon request.

Financial and Program Requirements

Students are responsible for providing their own transportation to and from the various clinical and social agencies used throughout the program for observational and direct care learning experiences.

In addition to college tuition, the student will need to purchase textbooks, uniforms (including white hose or socks and shoes), nursing pin, and stethoscope. The student will also have to pay fees for achievement and other standardized testing associated with the program, and will need to have a watch with second hand, a pen light, and scissors.

All students entering the program will be required to undergo a background check and drug screening prior to their admittance to the clinical sites.

PN First Semester Curriculum
Course # Course Title Lecture Lab Credits
NUR 120 Nursing Terminology and Charting 2 0 2
PNE 155 Body Structure and Function 3 0 3
PNE 161 Nursing in Health Changes I 4 9 7
NUR 135 Drug Dosage Calculation 1 0 1
SDV 100 College Success Skills 1 0 1
SOC 200 Principles of Sociology I 3 0 3
  Semester Total 14 9 17
PN Second Semester Curriculum
Course # Course Title Lecture Lab Credits
PNE 162 Nursing in Health Changes II 6 12 10
PSY 230 Developmental Psychology 3 0 3
ENG 111 College Composition I 3 0 3
PNE 173 Pharmacology 1 0 1
  Semester Total 13 12 17
PN Third Semester Curriculum <
Course # Course Title Lecture Lab Credits
HLT 230 Principles of Nutrition and Human Development 3 0 3
PNE 145 Trends in Practical Nursing 1 0 1
PNE 163 Nursing in Health Changes III 4 12 8
  Semester Total 8 12 12

Total Minimum Credits: 46

This page was reviewed on June 11, 2013, updated on January 14, 2014. If you are looking for previous catalog information, please reference the 2008-2010 Catalog, 2010-2012 Catalog, or 2013-2014 Catalog.

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