Nursing (Pathways to Nursing BSN) Curriculum
Pathways to Nursing
Pathways to Nursing prepares world-ready nurses to develop the skills necessary in today‘s health care system. Through a partnership with UPMC Shadyside School of Nursing students enroll in a combination of courses at both locations for their first six terms. General studies courses are completed at Chatham University. Students will simultaneously complete the nursing diploma program at UPMC Shadyside School of Nursing and become eligible to take the NCLEX-RN (National Council for Licensing Examination-Registered Nurse) to obtain a license as a registered nurse (RN). Students who successfully pass the NCLEX-RN enter into Chatham's Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accredited RN-to-BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) program for the final two terms. The degree can be completed in three years through the accelerated option, which includes taking a full credit load each summer. Students will officially be recognized as Chatham students throughout the program.
Eligibility for Pennsylvania Nursing Licensure
Pennsylvania law prohibits the State Board of Nursing from issuing a license to anyone who has been convicted of a felony relating to a controlled substance, unless at least ten years have elapsed from the date of conviction, and the applicant satisfies other criteria of personal rehabilitation. At the time of application for licensure, the State Board also requires reporting of any crime, felony, misdemeanor, or pending criminal charges.
+ Degree Requirements
NUR111 Professional Nursing and Health Concepts
The student will be introduced to the role of the professional nurse based on the Nursing Standards for Professional Practice (Professionalism concept) and explore Tanner’s Clinical Judgment model (Clinical Judgment concept) to develop a systematic approach to clinical decision making. The concept of communication will be explored utilizing self-discovery techniques creating a foundation upon which professional, therapeutic, and structured communication skills will be developed. The concept of informatics will be introduced identifying technologies to support the safe communication of health information. Navigation of the clinical information system will be experienced in the clinical setting. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
4 NUR112 Basic Health Concepts
The course examines foundational, patient-centered concepts for nursing practice including the concepts of functional ability and optimal human function, mobility, and sensory perception. The patient centered concepts of motivation and adherence are examined as a foundation for teaching the student how to effectively educate patients for optimal self-management and function. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
5 NUR113 Health Assessment and Nursing Practice Strategies
This one credit laboratory experience is designed to complement the content in NUR112. The focus of this course is the development of the knowledge and skills needed to perform a complete physical assessment utilizing a systematic approach of data collection. This laboratory experience will permit the student to engage in developing cognitive and psychomotor skills to support nursing care related to functional ability, mobility, and patient education.Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
1 NUR211 Health Promotion Concepts
The focus of this course is health promotion, disease prevention and healthy lifestyles. Students will begin to recognize how the environment influences health and to discriminate between healthy and unhealthy lifestyle choices. The interaction of the individual and the environment inclusive of cultural and spiritual variations as they affect health and wellness will be explored. The attributes and roles of the professional nurse are expanded and applied to diverse experiences. Concepts of health promotion, nutrition, glucose regulation and stress-coping will be emphasized. The clinical experience will focus on the role of the nurse in primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
4 NUR212 Family Health Concepts
The focus of this course are the development tasks and adaptation as they relate to lifespan and health with the incorporation of selected health issues, physical and developmental changes in the life cycle, health maintenance, and health problems. The concept of caregiving as it relates to family and health care will be introduced. The clinical experience will explore family health care within the community and health care settings. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
4 NUR215 Pharmacology in Nursing I
This course provides students with a foundation of basic pharmacologic concepts important for safe medication management. Through the exploration of medication classifications, students identify the implications to nursing practice. Building on the concepts presented in prerequisite nursing courses, the students explore medication management across the lifespan. Utilizing the nursing standards for professional practice, students will demonstrate skillfulness in safe medication management. Clinical laboratory will enable students to apply these essential aspects culminating in a medication math calculation competency exam. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
2 NUR311 Health and Illness Concepts
This course focuses on the health and illness continuum as it applies to human experience across the lifespan. Promotion of health, prevention of disease and the role of the nurse caring for individuals experiencing illness are examined. Concepts for nursing practice from the themes of homeostasis and regulation, protection and movement, and care coordination are explored.Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
6 NUR312 Mental Health Concepts
Incorporating prior knowledge of concepts of health, illness, stress, coping, and communication, this course focuses on the nursing care of individuals across the lifespan with acute and chronic alterations of emotions, cognitions, behaviors, and coping. The student will identify the impact these alterations have on the patient’s ability to actively participate and collaborate with staff in meeting care needs in all healthcare settings. Communication strategies are emphasized as pathways to safe, effective care and interdisciplinary collaboration. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
5 NUR315 Pharmacology in Nursing II
This course provides students with advanced pharmacologic concepts important for safe medication management. Through the exploration of medication classifications that are utilized in the treatment of more complex concepts, students identify the implications to nursing practice. Building on the concepts presented in pre-requisite nursing courses, the students explore medication management of acute and complex concepts. Utilizing the nursing standards for professional practice, students will demonstrate skillfulness in safe medication management. Clinical laboratory will enable students to apply these essential aspects. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
2 NUR380 Complex Health Concepts
Using prior knowledge of concepts of health and illness, this course focuses on the nursing care of patients with acute illness and subsequent complex health alterations. The themes of homeostasis and regulation, oxygenation and perfusion and health care delivery are examined through concept analysis of acid-base balance, gas exchange, perfusion, intracranial regulation, clotting and palliation as applied to complex health issues. Family dynamics as it relates to acute illness are explored. The role of the professional nurse is further developed with an emphasis on interdisciplinary collaboration and communication. Clinical experiences will include higher acuity acute care environments and long term acute care Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
7 NUR382 Professional Nursing and Health System Concepts
This course is designed to facilitate the student’s development and transition into the professional nursing role. Through guided experiences with registered nurse preceptors in the acute care setting, students are expected to integrate previous evidenced based learning. They will gradually increase accountability for the patient centered care of patients and their families experiencing functional and dysfunctional health patterns. The primary theme addressed in this course is care competencies for professional nurses that are examined through analysis of the concepts of health care quality and leadership. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
5 NUR399 NCLEX Preparation
This course prepares the student to take the NCLEX-RN exam through a variety of individual and group strategies. Students will utilize test taking strategies to respond to high level NCLEX style questions and integrate knowledge from previous courses to meet the requirements of benchmarking for licensure as an entry level nurse. Course taught through UPMC: Shadyside School of Nursing.
2 IND175 Introduction to Nursing Resources
This course will teach students how to develop and apply skills in locating, evaluating, and synthesizing information from a variety of resources. Over the course of five weeks, students will complete five assignments that are specific to each week's topic. This work is to be completed outside of class and is designed to help complete projects and papers in NUR402.
1 NUR402 Health Policy and Finance
This course is designed to explore the role of Health and Public Policy, financial considerations, the formulation and role of legislation and regulation, and ethical principles related to the ANA Code of Ethics. Also addressed will be such topics as value-based purchasing, end-of-life care, living wills, advanced directives, social networking and the Affordable Care Act. The students will analyze an ethical dilemma, write an advocacy letter to a state or federal legislator, and study the role of professional nursing organizations with respect to advocacy and formulating public policy.
3 NUR403 Women's Health Nursing
This course will present an overview of issues relevant to women's health nursing. Nursing assessment techniques specific to female clients will be explored. Specific nursing interventions to promote women's health will be covered, including: HIV, early detection of female cancers, reproductive health, mental health issues, osteoporosis, pharmacokinetics, nutrition, and physical fitness.
3 NUR407 Scholarship for Evidence-Based Practice
This course is designed to enable students to critically review nursing research, choose a relevant clinical issue to examine, explore literature and utilize nursing research in clinical practice. Ethical principles of nursing research, particularly the protection of human subjects and other ethical accountabilities focusing on research utilization and evidence-based practice will be explored.
3 NUR409 Clinical Prevention, Population and Environmental Health
This course provides a framework for the development of nursing interventions promoting population and environmental health for individuals and communities. Health promotion will be a significant focus of this course.
3 NUR410 Global Cultural Diversity and Specialty Population Nursing
This course is focused on various cultural and specialty populations. Multiple aspects of culture, vulnerability, and needs of individual populations will be analyzed and discussed. Content includes issues of ethics, social justice, health literacy, and barriers to care. (35 clinical hours required)
3 NUR411 Geriatric Nursing
Multiple aspects of geriatric health and the aging population will be explored. Specific nursing interventions to promote older adult health will be covered including pharmacological considerations, nutrition, elder abuse, sexuality, coping with loss and grief, health and wellness promotion and the continuum of care. (35 clinical hours required)
3 NUR412 Nursing Communication and Quality Improvement
This course will prepare the student for effective communication and collaboration amongst the interprofessional team with the goal of practicing high quality, safe, patient-centered care. Topics of quality improvement and interprofessional communication will be emphasized.
3 NUR499 Nursing Leadership and Professionalism Practicum
This culminating course encompasses various aspects of professionalism and leadership while shadowing multiple leaders in the clinical setting. Students will apply leadership concepts and decision making skills in the provision of high quality nursing care. (70 clinical hours required)
As part of the overall curriculum plan, students take the following support courses.
ENG105 First Year Writing Seminar 3 PHI210 Biomedical Ethics
This course is concerned with the ethical issues arising from recent biomedical innovations or issues that might arise from future innovations. Among the topics discussed are new definitions of death and personhood, killing versus letting die, allocation of scarce medical resources, organ transplants, genetic engineering, the psychiatric control of human behavior, and new projected techniques of human sexual and asexual reproduction.
3 BIO115 Basic Microbiology with Lab
This course is designed for students who need a broad coverage of microbiology and have little or no background in biology or chemistry. It includes a study of microscopic organisms and their relation to health and disease. There is a special emphasis on disinfection, sterilization, immunology, and microbiological aspects of infectious disease. Three hours of lecture and two hours of lab per week. Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in a school of nursing.
4 BIO116 Basic Anatomy and Physiology I with Lab
This is the first of two courses designed for students who need a broad coverage of anatomy and physiology and have little or no background in science. It includes a study of the structure and function of human cells, tissue, organs, and systems. Clinical applications of anatomy and physiology will also be considered. Three hours of lecture and two hours of lab per week. Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in a school of nursing.
4 BIO117 Basic Anatomy and Physiology II with lab
This is the second of two courses designed for students who need a broad coverage of anatomy and physiology and have little or no background in science. It includes a study of the structure and function of human cells, tissue, organs, and systems. Clinical applications of anatomy and physiology will also be considered. Three hours of lecture and two hours of lab per week. Prerequisite(s): BIO 116
4 PSY152 Human Growth and Development
Physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development are studied throughout the life span. Major theories of development are discussed. Applications and examples are presented from applied contexts. Special needs of individuals at various stages throughout the life span are addressed. This course is NOT a substitute for 200 and 300 level development courses that apply toward majors in psychology and social work and certification in education. Does not count towards the psych major.
+ Clinical Requirements
All RN-BSN students must complete three clinical experiences during their program. Students will complete clinical in their areas of interest beginning with self-directed clinical placement. The clinical placement process must be complete 2 weeks prior to the beginning of a course with a clinical component. The RN-BSN clinical coordinator is available to guide each student through the entire clinical process, which briefly includes:
- Each student contacts the RN-BSN clinical coordinator to identify an appropriate clinical site and qualified preceptor;
- The student contacts the clinical site and preceptor requesting permission to complete clinical at that site with that preceptor and discuss an appropriate clinical experience and project;
- The student completes their clinical hours and project following a schedule agreed upon by the student and preceptor within the timeframe of the course session;
- Students must document the clinical experience on a Clinical Log template. The final signed clinical log and other clinical requirements must be submitted by the conclusion of the clinical experience.
Approval of the preceptor, clinical site, and learning experiences must be secured prior to beginning any clinical experiences. A signed clinical Affiliation Agreement must be in place prior to the student engaging in any clinical experiences. It is the responsibility of the student to comply with agency requirements specific to physical examinations, immunizations, CPR certification, drug screening, and criminal record background checks, and submit all associated documentation directly to the clinical agency.