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Accelerate your degree

Faculty of Nursing launches new bachelor of nursing option

Student Life

By Marcia Porter

How do you make a busy September even more action-packed than usual?

If you’re the Faculty of Nursing, you launch a brand new option of the bachelor of nursing (BN) program.

The new three-year accelerated option was approved in December 2018 by Memorial’s Senate and opened for admission in January 2019. Despite that small window of time, seats are already filled.

The option is open to students with two years completed, or 60 credit hours, of an undergraduate program. It replaces the fast-track option introduced in 2002 for students with a university degree.

You can read more about the accelerated option, including admission requirements and program of study. Admissions for the 2020-21 school year will open in mid-October 2019.

“The advantage of our new option is that students no longer need a full degree, and certain prerequisites that were required for admission into the fast-track option are now included as part of the program,” said Dr. Alice Gaudine, dean, Faculty of Nursing. “We’re excited about introducing it as we continue our curriculum renewal.”

Greater access to simulation experiences will be a feature of the new accelerated option of the BN program.
Photo: Submitted

The faculty began rolling out its revised curriculum last fall, with a focus on actively engaging students in learning, bringing more real-life situations into the classroom and integrating Indigenous knowledge and approaches into the curriculum.

“The changes we’ve made and continue to build on reflect our commitment to offering the very best, most up-to-date approaches in teaching and learning to our students,” said Dr. Gaudine.

Better prepared

Part of the emphasis on active, engaged learning means that students, including those in the new option, will participate in more simulation-based activities over the course of their bachelor of nursing program, something they’ve been asking for.

“Students love simulation and want more of it because it better prepares them for a variety of clinical experiences they’ll face in the hospital setting,” said Prof. Nicole Lewis-Power, an instructor and co-ordinator of the first-year nursing program who is also the lead on curriculum renewal.

Nursing students learn about building therapeutic rapport and then put their skills to practice with their colleagues.
Photo: Rich Blenkinsopp

The accelerated option is available at the Faculty of Nursing and the Western Regional School of Nursing in St. John’s and Corner Brook, respectively.

While the fast-track option is no longer accepting admissions, current students will be able to complete their program. The faculty is looking into a three-year bachelor of nursing program that leads to a master’s of science in nursing for students who already possess an undergraduate degree.

The three years would lead to a master of science in nursing (MSc.N) with eligibility to write the licensure exam to become a registered nurse.

Last December Memorial’s School of Nursing became the Faculty of Nursing, recognizing the growth in undergraduate and graduate nursing programs, in research and scholarly activities and in public engagement.

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