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College of Saint Mary

Nursing education at the College of Saint Mary began in 1969 with the establishment of the ADN program. The Nursing Programs are approved by the Nebraska State Board of Nursing and in addition the ASN/BSN is accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC)*. College of Saint Mary currently offers four undergraduate programs in Nursing.
* The Practical Nursing Program is designed to prepare Practical Nurses that are able to provide care to patients in a variety of healthcare settings. ENROLL NOW for classes starting
* May 19, 2008. PN Brochure PN Curriculum PN Summer Schedule
* The Licensed Practical Nurse to Associate Degree in Nursing plan is designed as a day program. Credit for prior nursing education may be achieved through successful passing of the NLN-ACE PN to RN Exams. This program can be completed in one calendar year, beginning in the summer semester. Plan of Study
* The Associate Degree Program can be completed in either a Nursing 2 Track (two-year program) or Nursing 3 Track (three-year program). At the completion of either program, you are eligible to complete testing for your nursing license. Plan of Study (2 Track) Plan of Study (3 Track)
* The Bachelor Degree level courses can be completed in a minimum of one calendar year, depending upon the student having completed the required Core Curriculum courses. Students can complete the BSN Program through full-time study or by pursuing part-time study over a longer period of time.
* The RN to BSN Program is designed as a day course for Registered Nurses that have their Associate Degree to complete their studies for a Bachelor Degree. Plan of Study

Registered Nurses are advocates and health educators for patients, families, and communities. When providing direct patient care, they observe, assess, and record symptoms, reactions, and progress in patients; assist physicians during surgeries, treatments, and examinations; administer medications; and assist in convalescence and rehabilitation. RNs also develop and manage nursing care plans, instruct patients and their families in proper care, and help individuals and groups take steps to improve or maintain their health.

Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) care for the sick, injured, convalescent, and disabled under the direction of physicians and registered nurses. In addition to providing routine beside care, LPNs in nursing care facilities help evaluate residents' needs, develop care plans, and supervise the care provided by nurses' aides. In doctors' offices and clinics, they also may make appointments, keep records, and perform other clerical duties.

The need for Registered Nurses is expected to increase by 21-35% and the median of earnings for Registered Nurses is approximately $40,397.*

Employment of Licensed Practical Nurses is expected to increase by 21-35% through 2012 and the median annual earnings of licensed practical nurses is approximately $28,221.*


In accordance with the Mission and Purposes of College of Saint Mary, the nursing faculty believes that the Associate of Science in Nursing Degree and the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree programs arise from society’s need for nurses who provide nursing care to people. To fulfill such a role, the graduate needs a general education that includes learning experiences that foster social and intellectual development of the individual. The Bachelor of Science Degree program builds upon the student’s basic nursing program with upper division nursing courses and emphasizes a basis in the liberal arts.

Each person is an individual with natural rights, dignity, worth, and potential. An individual has basic needs that are psychosocial, cultural, intellectual, developmental, spiritual, environmental and physical. Health and illness are viewed as a continuum. The responsibility for one’s state of wellness lies within each individual. A person’s response to need fulfillment results in varying degrees of health or illness.

Education is one process whereby the capacities and potential of the individual are developed. Learning is the outcome of this educative process and is manifested by changes in behavior that persist. These changes occur in the way the learner thinks, feels and acts. Education involves the active efforts of the learner through which identified goals are achieved. Each learner is responsible for his/her own learning. While considering the diverse ages, backgrounds and life experiences of the learner, the teacher facilitates the learner’s efforts and evaluates achievement of mutually identified or established goals.

Learning is influenced by conditions in the environment. A conducive learning environment includes the following attitudes and conditions: respect for the dignity of each individual, opportunity for creativity, freedom of expression, recognition and acceptance of responsibility, participation in decision making, and promotion of constructive citizenship and cooperative relationships. The learning environment encompasses all individuals, facilities, and activities that affect learning.

Nursing is an essential humanitarian service. The nurse shares with other health professionals the responsibility for assisting recipients of health care to achieve an optimal level of wellness. The recipients of nursing may be individuals, families, groups, communities or societies. The nurse achieves the purpose of nursing through utilization of this nursing process while providing and/or coordinating care.

Nursing is an applied science and an art. Professional nursing functions are based on knowledge of principles and theories from nursing and other natural and behavioral sciences. These theories from nursing and other disciplines are synthesized to form the framework for implementing the nursing process. This process is aimed at assisting individuals to attain their optimal level of wellness.
Nursing practice includes a broad spectrum of activities that range from those based on common knowledge, skills and attitudes to those that require a complex organization of these components. Therefore, various kinds of educational programs are needed for preparation of nurses to respond to differing levels of health care needs. Education for nursing provides the opportunity to integrate knowledge of nursing with knowledge from other disciplines.

Nursing education strives to assist the student to incorporate a philosophy of nursing that is consistent with the student’s own philosophy. The graduates of both programs understand the dynamic nature of nursing and the continuous need to update their knowledge. They seek and accept opportunities and responsibilities for personal and professional growth.

The focus of associate degree education in nursing is the acquisition of knowledge, attitudes and skills essential for the provision of care to the client who is an individual exhibiting common health problems. Graduates of the associate degree program base nursing action and rationale on knowledge and principles from the lower division courses in nursing and the natural and behavioral sciences. They are competent in the use of basic technical skills required to meet the needs of the client. They effectively utilize a variety of verbal and non-verbal communication techniques to meet client needs. Graduates function in the role of a health team member in a structured health care setting where knowledge and skills are needed. They assume appropriate responsibility for managing and supervising less skilled workers who complete technical aspects of care. The Associate Degree graduate assumes responsibility and accountability for provision of care.

The Associate Degree Curriculum is focused on individual needs and operationalized through concepts which include: categories of human functioning, human development, communication, the teaching/learning process, nursing process, the discipline of nursing, management, family and community. In fulfilling their role as health team members, the associate degree graduates provide nursing care to clients with health problems. Graduates utilize the nursing process to assess each client, plan and implement appropriate nursing care and evaluate the client’s response to nursing interventions according to outcome criteria.

The focus of baccalaureate education in nursing (the Bachelor of Science Degree) includes upper division nursing courses and a broader base in general education. Care is provided to clients who may be individuals, families, groups and communities with a major emphasis on health promotion in more complex situations. The educational program provides opportunities for the necessary expansion of knowledge, skills and attitudes. Concepts addressed within the Baccalaureate Curriculum include human development, communication, transition, the teaching/learning process, nursing process, nursing dimensions, research, management, family and community.

Baccalaureate graduates function in a variety of health care settings. As members of the health team, they may assume a leadership role and function as a manager of client care. In fulfilling the role of member of the health team, the baccalaureate graduates provide direct or indirect nursing care to individuals, families, groups and communities consistent with professional nursing standards. An expanded knowledge base, which includes exploration of nursing theories, allows for enhanced practice. These graduates utilize the nursing process to assess health needs and problems, plan nursing care, implement care or direct others to implement care, evaluate responses to nursing interventions, and modify as needed. The graduates assume individual accountability and responsibility for the development of complex plans of care and related outcomes. In addition, baccalaureate graduates have a basic understanding of nursing research and are prepared to pursue advanced study in nursing.

The graduates of the baccalaureate program base nursing action and rationale on upper division courses in nursing, the liberal arts and natural and behavioral sciences. They are competent in the use of skills needed to respond to the needs of clients. They possess skills necessary to provide leadership to the health care team, evaluate care given by others and work collaboratively with other health professionals and consumers of nursing care.

Graduates of both programs provide a quality of nursing care that reflects an approach based on the psychosocial, intellectual, developmental, spiritual, environmental and physical needs of the individual at any age and/or level of wellness within their scope of nursing practice. They have the knowledge and skills needed to function effectively in the role of the associate degree nurse or baccalaureate degree nurse and have the ability to make ethical decisions and judgments appropriate to their level of preparation.

Graduates of the Associate in Science and Bachelor of Science Degree Programs at College of Saint Mary respect the rights and privileges of all members of society and appreciate their responsibility to promote the optimal level of wellness of the client. They understand the extent and limit of their roles and their responsibilities to nursing, the health team and consumers.


The BSN nursing curriculum builds on the associate degree. This means the student will complete the associate degree and the NCLEX to become a licensed RN before continuing to the Bachelor’s degree level. The program is designed to be completed in two academic years of full time study for those completing the ASN Nursing 2 Track. The ASN Nursing 3 Track students, providing all non-nursing electives and BSN prerequisites are completed, can complete the BSN nursing curriculum in one additional year of full-time study. Part-time study over a longer period is also available. Students complete a curriculum, which includes upper division nursing, core requirements and support courses. Clinical practice is an integral part of the curriculum and includes independent clinical experience. Most students complete a supporting field in Natural Sciences. Another option is a Business or Paralegal Minor.

School name:College of Saint Mary
Address:7000 Mercy Road
Zip & city:NE 68106-2377 Nebraska
Phone:(402) 399-2653

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College of Saint Mary Nursing School Location

College of Saint Mary Courses

This course will provide the theoretical framework upon which subsequent nursing courses will build. Concepts related to human functioning will be introduced. Nursing process, communication techniques, and physical assessment skills will be developed.

It is a beginning level course that introduces the student to nursing and the nursing curriculum. Topics include nursing as a profession and the role of the nurse on the health care team. The basic principles of growth and development, family, nursing process, communication, and legal/ethical concerns will be addressed as they relate to the beginning nursing student.

A course designed for LPNs articulating into the ASN program. Concepts of human function and nursing process provide the integrating elements for this bridge course. The role of the nurse in the health care system and the role of the student as a self-directed learner are discussed. NLN-ACE PN to RN exams are given prior to registering for the class, or permission of the ASN Program Director. Credit for 15 semester hours in nursing is awarded for successful completion of these tests after passing Bridging LPN to ASN - Theory.

This beginning-level clinical nursing course will focus on the initial skills needed to care for the client. The clinical laboratory, nursing home facility, and acute care settings may be used as practice settings. (12 clinical hours per week.)

The focus of this intermediate level course is nursing care of the client from birth through middle adulthood. The nursing student will assist the client to maintain essential life functions and adapt to alterations in human functioning. This course builds upon knowledge and skills acquired in beginning level courses.

The focus of this intermediate level course includes both physical and psychosocial nursing care of clients from adulthood through the aging process. The nursing student will examine methods to assist the client to maintain essential life functions and to adapt to alterations in human functioning while building upon previous knowledge.

This course further develops content in Nursing Concepts I related to curriculum outcomes. Principles of human development across the lifespan are presented as related to communication and teaching learning styles, family and cultural issues, and community resources. Class content can be applied in concurrent nursing clinical courses. The Student Professional Portfolio continues to serve as a measurement of student development in the nursing curriculum.

This course further develops content presented in previous Nursing Concepts I and Nursing Concepts II. Ethical principles are discussed as they relate to professional growth and client care. Issues related to the scope of nursing practice will be presented and discussed from the perspective of legal, ethical, and personal responsibility. Class content is applied in concurrent clinical courses. The Student Professional Portfolio continues to serve as a measurement of student development in the nursing curriculum.

Content for this proficient level course will address issues that have broad implications in nursing. As manager of care for selected clients, the student will address ethical/legal issues related to changes in nursing care. Role transition from student to the entry level of nursing practice will be discussed.

This course assists students to attain knowledge and skills necessary for the final nursing courses. It is individualized to meet the student’s specific needs. Two groups of students are required to take this course per policy 2.5: Those who failed or withdrew from Complex Nursing - Theory/ Nursing through the Lifespan – Clinical and wish to repeat it; those who are out of sequence for Complex Nursing - Theory/ Nursing through the Lifespan – Clinical due to personal reasons, failure of previous nursing or science courses, or low GPA and are not currently enrolled in a nursing theory/clinical course.

The study of the classes of drugs, their uses, mechanism of action, systematic effects, adverse effects, and contraindications. Specific examples of drugs will be used as models to explain various classes. Specific analysis of nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular, and excretory drugs, using biochemical and physiological concepts will be carried out.

This elective, clinical course places intermediate nursing students in a preceptored rural/underserved clinical experience. Students will apply nursing process to multiple clients with predictable outcomes. Sites and supervisions are individually arranged. Program Director approval required.

Complex Nursing is the proficient level ASN course. Multi-system alterations in human functioning will be explored with emphasis on prioritization of comprehensive nursing care. Independent functions of the nurse are explored to allow further development of the associate degree nurse’s role, while building upon knowledge acquired in previous courses.

The focus of this clinical nursing course is on application of knowledge and expansion of the nursing process. Emphasis will be on human development of the individual and the nurse as a teacher. Opportunities for clinical experiences may include maternity environments, pediatric facilities, and other selected acute-care and outpatient settings. This course builds upon knowledge and skills acquired in beginning level theory and clinical courses. Students will be expected to draw on this knowledge and these skills to successfully complete this course. (Average 9 clinical hours per week.)

The focus of this intermediate level clinical course is on application of knowledge and expansion of the nursing process. Emphasis will be on human development and communication with adults and the elderly. Opportunities for clinical experiences may include; mental health facilities, acute/extended care environments, and selected community settings. Students will be expected to draw upon knowledge and skills acquired in previous courses to successfully complete this course. (Average 9 clinical hours per week.)

The focus of this proficient level clinical nursing course is on comprehensive nursing care for selected clients with multi-system alterations in human functioning in a variety of settings. Clinical opportunities to use selected management skills are provided. This course builds upon knowledge and skills acquired in all previous courses. Students will be expected to draw upon previously acquired knowledge and skills to successfully complete this course. (Average 12 clinical hours per week.)

Designed to develop a broader understanding of a problem related to nursing. The student will select a particular topic of interest. With input from the assigned instructor, the student will develop the objectives and goals of the course.

The focus of this baccalaureate level nursing course is on history-taking, assessment of health and developmental factors (e.g. psychosocial, cultural, intellectual, spiritual/moral, transition, environment) and how each factor affects the individual at various ages. This course will also examine factors related to the nurse's own professional development. The student will develop skills in physical assessment.

The focus of this baccalaureate-level nursing course is to provide an overview of nursing theories, prepare the RN to become a consumer of research, and apply nursing research at the baccalaureate level. There is an introduction to steps in the research process. The basic components of qualitative and quantitative research designs are examined. Theories of nursing are introduced as a basis for professional nursing practice. The purpose of nursing research is examined in relationship to theory development in nursing. This course fosters the practical application of the research, incorporating knowledge of statistics from a previous course. Ethical considerations in nursing research and the role of nursing research in health care are discussed. The critique process is introduced and used for the evaluation of nursing research from the consumer’s perspective.

This upper-division course builds on creative learning in nursing, humanities, and natural and applied sciences. The content of the course focuses on health promotion, health maintenance, and prevention of illness and injury for individuals, families, other groups, and communities. Additionally, concepts related to public health organization, epidemiology, and vital statistics are integrated throughout the course.

This baccalaureate nursing course provides the student with an opportunity to apply select leadership and management principles to nursing. Students examine select social, political, legal, ethical, and communication factors that influence nursing and the health care system.

This upper-division nursing course examines the baccalaureate-prepared nurse role related to various health care roles, including licensed practical, associate-prepared, baccalaureate-prepared, and masters and doctorally-prepared nurses; and other health care professional roles. Students are also introduced to functions characteristic of the baccalaureate role, and are encouraged to discuss applications to the current health care arena. The course is intended to prepare students for a leadership role as well as for graduate school; consequently, a major paper is required, a presentation related to the paper is expected, and a literature search related to a topic in nursing serves as the foundation for both.

The practicum component of population-based community Health Nursing provides the R.N. student the opportunity to function with individuals, families, and other groups and communities to develop competency in recognizing and working with actual and potential health problems evolving from basic human needs.

This baccalaureate-nursing practicum clinical course provides the student with an opportunity to apply objectives from Leading and Managing in Health Care. The RN student is assigned to a preceptor (nurse role model) who provides experiences to assist the student in processing information. The student independently arranges experiences with the preceptor. The faculty facilitates the learning experience. (On average 6 practicum hours per week.)

This upper-division nursing course provides an opportunity for the student to analyze and synthesize concepts obtained from previous courses and incorporates them into a final seminar quality improvement project. This project entails the evaluation of selected areas of nursing practice. The student presents the project at the annual nursing symposium. Students use the critique process for the evaluation of nursing research from the consumer’s perspective.

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