Welcome to Distance Nursing Studies at St. Francis Xavier University!
We are delighted that you have chosen St. Francis Xavier University as the provider of your undergraduate nursing education! StFX not only offers exceptional educational opportunities but also a unique sense of family among students and the institution.
The successful pursuit of professional education challenges motivation, self-discipline, and ability to make long-range plans. Carefully assess this challenge in relation to your other responsibilities and career goals. The rewards of formal study in terms of both personal and professional development are great. However, St. Francis Xavier University recognizes that returning to school is not an easy decision.
You have made a significant decision which will have a tremendous impact on both your personal and professional lives. While the pursuit of a university education is challenging, it is also an incredibly rewarding experience.
Like all families, we are committed to helping each other as much as possible. You will learn, as you read through this manual, about the networks of resources that have been established to promote your development and success. You will also learn about the many forms of assistance available to you as you progress through your program of study.
As a program unit, we are committed to student-centred education in a social environment that respects the value and worth of each individual. Generating a challenging and fulfilling learning experience is our central role in your educational experience.
The StFX distance education model has been nationally recognized as meeting the highest standards. Our Distance Nursing Programs were presented with an Award of Excellence for Instructional Design and an Award of Excellence for Student Support Services in 1996-97 from the Canadian Association for Distance Education. While national awards are always gratifying, the success of our students provides the real reward. It is witnessing the growth and sharing celebrations along the way that illustrate the value of this program in the lives of students.
In application to an earlier cycle, a prospective student wrote:
"I receive great satisfaction from my job and I believe that advancing my education would benefit myself, my patients, and my fellow staff members. Like many other nurses, I have a desire to learn and study and take on challenges, but my situation (family, work, financial obligations) is a real barrier to the pursuit of these goals. A home-based program of study would be a great opportunity for me."
If you share these feelings, the University warmly encourages you to apply!
If you need to learn a little more about us first, take a look at our brochure, then you might be ready to register!
Why Take This Program?
- Earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in a program specially for post RN learners, and built around part-time study at home and workplace.
- Combine career and education with minimal disruption to work and family schedules.
- Participate in a Distance Education schedule that is sensitive to the experience, expectations, and learning needs of adult students.
- Prepare yourself professionally for increasingly complex health care and nursing practice.
StFX University reserves the right to alter policies, procedures, fees, course availability, delivery mode, schedules and/or academic program requirements at any time. It is the responsibility of the student to become and stay informed on the academic regulations and requirements of the specific program of study.
The Part-time Post RN BScN program was comprehensively revised in 2008, and is based on the completion of a total of 63 credits. The new curriculum is designed to reflect and enhance the professional knowledge, competencies, and experience of Post RN students. The new program allows students to customize their program, and select nursing electives in areas that will support individualized needs and interests, and professional nursing practices.
The curriculum for specialty certificates is derived from the Part-time Post RN BScN program. All courses taken as components of a certificate program or as an individual special interest course are fully transferable into the degree program.
The courses in the program's Distance Education schedule are built around correspondence material (Print and Online).
Nursing (24 credits)
DNUR 135 Contemporary Issues in Nursing (3 credit)
DNUR 115 Health Teaching & Learning (3 credit)
DNUR 201 Community Mental Health I (3 credit)
DNUR 205 Community Health Nursing - (3 credit)
DNUR 245 Aging and the Older Adult (3 credit)
DNUR 425 Comprehensive Health Assessment - (3 credit)
DNUR 415 Nursing of Adults II - online delivery only (3 credit)
DNUR 494 Leadership and Management in Nursing (3 credits)
Humanities/Science (30 credits)
DNUR 300 Research Methods (Sociology) (6 credit)
DNUR 330 Legal & Ethical Issues in Nursing (6 credit)
Chemistry 150D Fundamentals of General & Biological Chemistry (6 credit)
Biology 105 Introductory Cell & Molecular Biology (3 credit)
Biology 115 Microbes in Human Health - online delivery only (3 credit)
Biology 251 Anatomy & Physiology I (3 credit)
Biology 252 Anatomy & Physiology II (3 credit)
Select any courses to total 9 credits
DNUR 202 Community Mental Health Nursing II - (3 credit)
DNUR 405 Nursing of Adults I - (3 credit)
DNUR 473 Basic Concepts in Pathophysiology - (3 credit)
DNUR 483 Hospice Palliative Care - (3 credit)
DNUR 488 Challenges in Aging: Implications for Nursing - (3 credit)
DNUR 490 Forensic Nursing – (6 credit)
DNUR 497 Computers in Nursing – (3 credit)
N499 Open Nursing Elective (3 credit)* one-time only for transfer credit
Minimum requirements are a current RN registration, one-year clinical experience, and high school certification. Applicants are considered if they have credit for five Grade XII university preparatory subjects (English, Mathematics, Chemistry, another science and one other subject), with no mark below 50 and a minimum average of 60.
Meeting published minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.
If you are not able to meet the above requirements, please contact the Program Office for assistance
This 63-credit program consists of 24 credits of required nursing courses, 18 credits of required science courses, 9 credits of required humanities courses and 12 credits of nursing electives.
The Program accepts up to 30 transfer credits for courses completed at other university institutions.
The Program can be completed within three years but students have up to 10 years from their acceptance date to complete all requirements.
The program has a limited annual entry. The application period deadline is July 30th each year for courses commencing in September.
Distance Science / Specialty Courses
St. Francis Xavier University is pleased to offer a customized package of science courses to Post-RN students through distance education. Designed specifically for nurses, these courses fulfill all science requirements for the BScN Program, and provide the necessary foundation for thorough comprehension and competent analysis of introductory chemistry and biological processes and related health and pathology issues.
Laboratory components are also designed for the Post-RN student. The laboratory components for the science courses have been integrated into the content, so there are no separate laboratory sessions either locally or on campus at STFX for the four biology courses or chemistry course.
These science courses may be taken by students currently enrolled in the Post-RN BScN Program, as well as those preparing to enroll in a baccalaureate nursing program. Non-nursing students may take these courses when granted special permission. Everything needed to complete the courses can be found online via Moodle (Learning Management System) with the exception of the course text which is additional.
Please note that each of the following Biology courses has a value of 3 credits and is delivered over a 10-week period. Chemistry 150D is a 20-week course and has a value of 6 credits.
Chemistry 150D: Fundamentals of General & Biological Chemistry
This course is designed to facilitate nursing students' knowledge of the chemical world within and around them, and to complement other courses in nursing, biology, and psychology. The basic concepts of general chemistry are covered along with an introduction to organic chemistry, nomenclature and the reactivities of functional groups. In addition, the fundamentals of biological chemistry, including carbohydrates, amino acids, proteins, nucleic acids and an outline of important metabolic pathways will be highlighted. This course may not be used as a prerequisite for any other chemistry course.
Biology 105: Introductory Cell & Molecular Biology
This course focuses on the structure & function of cells, cell division, patterns of inheritance, and the molecular basis of inheritance. Among others, topics covered include small & large organic compounds, organization of the cell, cell membrane, energy, enzyme & catalysis, pathways that release or capture energy, cell division (mitosis & meiosis), patterns of inheritance in humans, molecular basis of inheritance (DNA structure & replication), gene expression (protein synthesis & gene regulation), recombinant DNA technology and genetic disease. BIOL 105 is a prerequisite for BIOL 115.
Biology 115: Microbes in Human Health
This course is an introduction to microbes from a human perspective, this course deals with viruses, bacteria and fungi. Topics include bacterial structure and function, bacterial genetics and antibiotic resistance, antimicrobial drugs, epidemiology, and viral structure and function.
Biology 251: Anatomy & Physiology
Using an integrated approach to the study of the integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous and sensory systems, this course provides students with a comprehensive working knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of these systems.
Biology 252: Anatomy & Physiology II
An integrated study of the endocrine, cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, urinary, reproductive and digestive systems, this course provides students with a comprehensive working knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of these systems. Biology 252 continues from Biology 251 and concentrates on systems involved in the maintenance of the body and reproduction. Biology 251 (Anatomy & Physiology I) and Biology 252 (Anatomy & Physiology II) together will provide you with basic knowledge about the structure and function of the human body.
Detailed information on the science courses can be obtained by calling the Program Office.
All science courses are offered to Post RN students or students on letters of permission. For more information on registration and fees regarding these courses please the Program Office.
SPECIALTY NURSING COURSES
St. Francis Xavier University is pleased to offer a series of specialty nursing courses to Post-RN students through distance education. Designed specifically for practicing nurses, these courses enable nurses to develop a stronger theory base and support the integration of new knowledge into their nursing practice.
Each course is fully transferable into the StFX Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and is accepted at many other institutions. Students may also choose to complete these courses in combination with other specific courses to obtain a clinical specialty certificate.
These specialty courses may be taken by students currently enrolled in the Post-RN BScN Program, as well as those preparing to enroll in a baccalaureate nursing program or nurses simply wanting to take a single course for personal or professional interest.
Please note that each of the following courses has a value of 3 credits and is delivered over a 10-week period or 6 credits and delivered over 20 weeks. The mode of delivery will include a distance learning package (online delivery ultilizing a learning management system).
• DNUR 473: Basic Concepts in Pathophysiology – (3 credit)
DNUR 473: Basic Concepts in Pathophysiology
This course was developed to help you understand the basic clinical concepts of pathophysiology―the physiology of disease processes. Pathophysiology addresses alterations in function as well as the mechanisms underlying disease. In studying the basics concepts of pathophysiology, you will appreciate the link between basic sciences and clinical nursing practice. Learning these concepts will enhance your understanding of the mechanisms which manifest in signs and symptoms of disease, thereby helping you make the best decisions in providing care for your patients.
DNUR 483: Hospice Palliative Care
This course was designed to provide an overview of the theories, current practices, and relevant issues in the field of palliative care, with a major focus being placed on the nurse's role in palliative care. The importance of a holistic, patient/family centered, interdisciplinary approach will be emphasized, and in line with the philosophy of nursing at StFX University, the concepts of self-care and health promotion, as they relate to quality of life issues, will be incorporated throughout the course.
DNUR 488: Challenges in Aging: Implications for Nursing
New discoveries in health research, advances in technology and greater awareness of the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle throughout life, have increased life expectancies for both men and women. We now have a growing aging population (the fastest growing segment of population growth) which has profoundly impacted government policies and programs, industry and business, as well as curricula in both nursing and medical schools as educators scurry to meet the healthcare challenges of an aging society. With constant nursing shortages and growing numbers of patients and clients in various health settings, there is increasing need for those knowledgeable in the aging process itself, as well as with the many physical and psychosocial issues associated with growing old in today’s world.
DNUR 490: Forensic Nursing
This course will examine the application of nursing science, combined with the bio-physical-social education of the registered nurse, to the investigation and treatment of trauma, death, violent or criminal activity, and the traumatic accidents within the clinical or community institution.
DNUR 497: Computers in Nursing
A current RN registration and one year clinical experience are required for all of the specialty courses. For more information on registration and fees regarding these courses please contact the Program Office.
Distance Nursing Programs
If you are a student looking to register in the Part-time Post RN BScN Program , either of our Certificate Programs or to register in a single course (stand-alone course), please download a program application form from one of the links below, by calling 1.800.565.4371 of by contacting the Program Office by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where applicable, please ensure all proper documents are sent, as indicated on each application (delays could lead to admission rejection).
Deadline: June 30 for September enrollment - Limited number of applications accepted after this date.
Distance Nursing Program Office
Distance Nursing Program Brochures
Click here to view the Distance Nursing Program Brochure (PDF file)
Health Related Links
Career and Education
- National Conferences
- Canadian Nurses Association (Careers)
- Canadian Nursing Index (Education)
- Canadian Nursing Index (Employment)
- Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN)
- Canadian Nurses Association (CNA)
- Canadian Public Health Association (CPHA)
- College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia (CRNNS)
- Canadian Health Network (Health Canada)
- Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI)
- Canadian Nursing Index (Literature: Journals, etc.)
- Health Canada (General)
- Health Canada (Health Promotion On-Line)
- Provincial Government Health Department Links
- Population Groups (Health Canada)
- Population Health/Determinants of Health (Health Canada)
- Statistics Canada
- Canadian Health Services Research Foundation (CHSRF)
- Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR)
- Population Health Research Unit (Dalhousie)
- Provincial Health Ethics Network (Alberta)
Frequently Asked Questions
- Will there be a repeat of material we've already done in our RN Program?
Course material takes into account the needs of Post-RN student. Students are encouraged to make their clinical interests and objectives known to course professors. The Program recognizes previous nursing experience by allowing students to focus on clinical experiences and projects which augment rather than duplicate previous studies and practice.
- I have taken courses from other institutions. How do I go about getting these evaluated for credit? When will I find out if they're acceptable?
You must arrange for official transcripts to be forwarded to the Distance Program Office at StFX University. When these documents are received, evaluation will be conducted by the Dean of Science and the Program Director regarding transfer credits.
- How many hours a week should I schedule for study and assignments?
The degree of reading and work varies between courses. It is best to plan for 10-12 hours of study per week, with additional time budgeted for assignments.
- What happens if I miss or fail a course?
You will have to acquire the missed or failed course the next time it is offered in the program schedule.
- Do I have to complete any preparatory courses before I am accepted into the program?
Students are accepted directly into the Post-RN BScn Program, and are not required to take any preparation courses.
A part-time degree program challenges motivation, self-discipline, and ability to make long-range plans. Carefully assess this challenge in relation to your other responsibilities and career goals. The rewards of formal study in terms of both personal and professional development and tremendous
The following awards are offered on an annual basis through the Distance Nursing Program to provide financial assistance and encourage nurses to continue to develop professionally through the attainment of new knowledge and skills. These awards are to recognize the students' commitment to pursuing higher education in nursing and dedication to their program of study.
Please click on the links below to download an application for these awards.(Acrobat files)
- Thelma May Kempffer Entrance Scholarship
- Distance Nursing BScN Program Study Award
- Katherine Wdowiak Memorial Scholarship
**Please note, the Distance Nursing programs are not eligible for any government student loan funding.
Distance Nursing Program Office
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday
2175 Varsity Drive, MacDonald Hall