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Bemidji State University (Department of Nursing)

The Department of Nursing is delighted to offer two unique approaches or "tracks" for students to earn a baccalaureate degree in Nursing here at BSU. One track is designed specifically for students who are already Registered Nurses desiring to complete a Baccalaureate degree in Nursing. We refer to this approach as the R.N. to Baccalaureate track. This particular program is designed to expand upon the knowledge of nurses who already have an RN license to practice Nursing. Each student's learning experience is organized in or near their home community so that they may continue to work and live in their home town while completing their degree. The R.N. to Baccalaureate track has been successfully issuing degrees to nurses from all over Minnesota for greater than 20 years now.

The second option for obtaining a baccalaureate degree is a more traditional approach; one we are referring to as the "4-year track". The 4-year track program is designed for those students entering Bemidji State University as freshmen. The 4-year track student will begin their university education with foundational course work and journey into nursing courses during their sophomore year. Students will be accepted into the Nursing major prior to the start of spring semester of their sophomore year. The junior and senior year provide a comprehensive educational experience along with great opportunities to practice nursing in a variety of clinical settings. The overall goal of our faculty involved in creating learning experiences for the 4-year track student is to help prepare these students to become the best professional nurse possible and provide these students with a variety of clinical practice opportunities prior to graduation..

Both the R.N. to Baccalaureate track and the 4-year track offered by the Department of Nursing have expert instructors who focus on making the student experience a quality one. The curriculum provides a strong nursing base with emphases in rural health, the sciences, evidence based practice, a state of the art skill component (for the 4-year track), palliative care, transcultural nursing, and a high technology connection. The technology component central to the educational experience of the 4-year track student supports safe, quality care at the point of care. The rural population is a priority for educational programming in the acute care, ambulatory care, and community settings.

Bemidji State University Nursing Department programs create the opportunity for each student to have a quality, individualized learning experience. The small campus community ensures access to instructors and educational opportunities that are structured to the knowledge level of each student.

In support of the institutional mission, the Goals of the Bemidji State University baccalaureate nursing program are to:
1. Sustain a profile of academic excellence, which includes national accreditation, and the recognition of standards/directions within the discipline and communities of interest.
2. Utilize an effective governance structure, which is congruent with the institution, program and needs of the learners.
3. Acquire and allocate resources to provide a positive learning environment.
4. Recruit and retain qualified and diverse students committed to academic excellence and professional development.
5. Recruit and retain qualified faculty who contribute to the university, the profession, and other arenas through activities associated with education, service and scholarly endeavors.
6. Implement a contemporary curriculum which promotes the development of a humane, holistic view of people, critical inquiry to address nursing practice in a changing society, responsible use of knowledge and practice abilities in a variety of settings; and prepares individuals to contribute to the discipline and society, engage in on-going professional development, and pursue graduate study.
7. Implement educational strategies and practices conducive to the personal and professional development of students.

In support of the Mission of Bemidji State University, the Department of Nursing contributes to society, and particularly northern Minnesota, through the provision of a baccalaureate nursing program. A central component of the Department’s effort is collaboration among a variety of institutions, settings, and resources to facilitate opportunities for continued learning and accessibility to nursing education in the region. The Department is committed to academic excellence, recognition of contemporary dimensions of the discipline and society, and the fostering of a supportive learning environment.
The education of baccalaureate prepared nurses includes study in the discipline and liberal education as a foundation for professional practice and graduate study. The department aims to prepare graduates who value humane, quality health care; responsibly conduct nursing roles in a variety of settings; and critically examine nursing practice in the on-going pursuit of addressing the health needs of people and one’s professional engagement in a changing, diverse society.
Human beings are viewed holistically. Each individual and each group is a complex integration of biological, psychological, social, cultural, and spiritual dimensions. Human beings are individually unique, autonomous, and possess inherent dignity, worth, and rights. All rights infer responsibilities within each individual’s capacity. As individuals experience life, potential exists for growth and change. Growth and change may be multifaceted, influenced by individual differences in personal potential and by subjective meanings and values.

Human beings exist dependently, independently, and interdependently. Human beings are in constant interaction within society, which is reflected in such environments as families, social institutions, cultures, and traditions. These contexts in turn influence individual perspectives, roles, values and beliefs.

Health involves a complex, multidimensional phenomenon influenced by biological, psychological, social, cultural, and spiritual variables. Health is individually defined and subjectively perceived. Internal and external forces and resources influence health. Human beings experience varying states of health during their lives.
The provision of nursing care, as part of the health care system, is influenced by legal, political, economic, social, and global forces. Humane, quality health care is a right and should be equally accessible to all people. People have the right to make informed decisions in regard to their health and health care.

Nursing addresses human responses to life experiences and varying states of health, and illness. Nursing is involved with the promotion, attainment, and preservation of optimal health, and amelioration of suffering. Nursing aims to support human beings in growth and change to maximize health potentials across the life span and/or to support a peaceful death. Nurses assess, design, provide, manage, and coordinate care for individuals, families and communities/populations representing diverse cultures, values, and beliefs. Nursing is guided by a respect for human dignity and requires a commitment to caring. Nurses respect and encourage client autonomy. Nursing practice is conducted in a variety of contexts.

Critical reflective thought, liberal education, professional knowledge, practice abilities, life experiences, and the values of the individual provide the foundation for nursing practice. The nursing process serves as a framework for the provision of nursing care.
Membership in the discipline of nursing involves a commitment to excellence, advocacy for nursing and humane, quality health care, accountability for one’s individual practice, responsible inquiry, and continued professional growth. Professional nursing practice is influenced by and contributes to society. Inherent to addressing the health needs of people and the evolvement of nursing as a discipline are collaboration with other groups, use of knowledge in refining practice, and the critical examination of nursing practice. Ethical professional behavior and decision-making abilities are essential in one’s practice and relationships. Baccalaureate education prepares graduates to serve as generalists in nursing practice and serves as a basis for graduate study.

Baccalaureate nursing education aims to foster self-directed learning to enable nurses to understand the meaning of their experiences, and to realize values in their practice. The learning environment encourages participants to critically examine assumptions, to explore alternative views, and to support the development of expanded or new perspectives.

Learning is a complex process. Though some forms of learning may be predictable and observable, not all significant learning can be equated to measurable changes in behavior. Learning includes the individual meaning, which emerges for the learner.
Faculty serve as facilitators and resource persons in the learning process. The learning environment provides for mutual respect, engages the learner in learning, and assists the learner in examining perspectives upon which practice is conducted. Experiential learning provides an arena whereby knowledge, practice, and individual meanings may be critically examined. Critical thought and reflection enhance the development of autonomy and empowerment for personal and professional growth.

School name:Bemidji State UniversityDepartment of Nursing
Address:1500 Birchmont Drive NE, #15
Zip & city:MN 56601 Minnesota
Phone:(218) 755-3860

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Department of Nursing Nursing School Location

Department of Nursing Courses


Provides an introduction to the discipline of nursing, concepts about health and health care, and the social context of the profession, attention to rural health care. Uses concepts emphasized by the university and within the departmental curriculum as a framework for examining the profession, role perspectives, and role socialization. Provides for exploration of career opportunities.

Focuses on psychosocial, including spiritual, dimensions of nursing care. Includes interpersonal communication and nursing practice approaches supportive to individuals experiencing transitions in health states.

Introduces the nursing process as a framework for providing a holistic approach to nursing care. Focuses on knowledge and practice related to basic needs and selected interventions, including medication administration. Learning environments include classroom, laboratory, and nursing care settings.

Introduces beginning theory and practice for systematic data collection about the health status of individuals, including the identification of characteristics common to particular age groups. Guides the student in distinguishing between normal and abnormal profiles and potential health concerns. Learning environments include classroom and laboratory settings.

Examines theoretical frameworks for performing a cultural assessment and for planning and implementing culturally appropriate nursing care. Studies cultural barriers to adequate health care, and health beliefs and practices of clients from diverse cultural backgrounds. Provides opportunity for students to reflect on culture in relation to oneself and nursing practice roles.


Examines forms of knowledge, the inter-relationship between knowledge and practice, and the development of critical reflective thought. Provides an introduction to selected nursing theories, evidence-based practice, and an exploration of implications for nursing practice approaches. Includes study of ingredients expected in formal paper presentations

Focuses on common physiological health and illness concerns experienced by adults and gerians. Nursing care management approaches and health care resources supportive to promotion, attainment, and preservation of health and amelioration of suffering are studied. Includes related psychosocial, nutritional and pharmacological dimensions of nursing practice.

Examines nursing care needs common to individuals and families receiving palliative and end-of-life care. Emphasizes nursing practice representing a holistic, interdisciplinary, client-centered approach aimed to ameliorate suffering and supporting a peaceful death. Health care resources and issues related to the provision of palliative care are addressed.

The nursing process, incorporating a holistic approach, serves as the framework for the provision of nursing care to adults and gerians. Nursing practice roles and abilities relate to promotion, attainment, and preservation of health, amelioration of suffering, and supporting a peaceful death. Learning experiences include laboratory and a variety of rural health care environments.

Examines values, the relationship of values and beliefs to the conduct of practice, and recognition of perspectives held by oneself and recipients of care. Frameworks for ethical decision-making, rights and responsibilities, and legal dimensions of contemporary practice are studied.

Introduces family assessment as a framework for nursing practice. Focuses on nursing care of families and newborns during an uncomplicated perinatal experience.

Focuses on physiological and psychosocial health and illness concerns experienced by infants, children, and adolescents. Nursing care management approaches and health care resources supportive to promotion, attainment, and preservation of health and amelioration of suffering are studied. Includes nutritional and pharmacological dimensions of nursing practice.

The nursing process, incorporating family assessment, serves as the framework for providing nursing care to childbearing families, children, and adolescents. Nursing practice roles and abilities relate to promotion, attainment, and preservation of health and amelioration of suffering. Learning experiences include laboratory and a variety of rural health care environments.

Examines the role and use of nursing research in nursing practice. An introduction to the research process is given and interpreted for its implications to nursing practice. An exploration of theory development in nursing is discussed.


Focuses on the psychodynamics of human behavior in relation to the mental health/mental illness spectrum and common lifespan concerns. In addition to assessment, nursing care management includes interventions such as psychopharmacologic approaches and therapeutic communication. Examines nursing and health care delivery resources, which address mental health needs of people, especially those living in rural areas.

[This course] emphasizes the use of the nursing process as the framework for addressing the community as client. Analyzes the major issues in community health nursing, rural health, the health care system, nursing practice roles, and diverse community settings.

Provides opportunity to use the nursing process with a community/population as the client. Nursing practice roles and abilities relate to health promotion, attainment, and preservation of optimal health of clients, including clients with mental health needs, in diverse rural community settings.

Course provides for study of leadership/management theories, styles, concepts, and strategies as applied to professional nursing roles and practice. Topics relate to organizational structure and culture, finance and marketing, decision making, initiation and management of change, and legal aspects of management. Leadership/management functions, key leadership skills, current issues, and resources are discussed.

A comprehensive practicum supportive to the continued development of role expectations of the baccalaureate graduate. Emphasizes providing, designing, managing, and coordinating nursing care within a selected rural setting.

Focuses on the analysis of trends, issues, and the contemporary social context of nursing. Provides opportunity for critical reflection related to professional perspectives.

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