The College of Nursing

The College of Nursing was established as a school in 1938 and became a college July 1, 1973. Graduates are prepared to provide high quality nursing care in all areas of nursing. Read more about the College of Nursing history here.

A variety of health care settings, including hospitals, long-term care facilities, home care, and various community agencies are used for clinical practice.

In summary, the College of Nursing offers the following programs:

  1. Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)
  2. Post-Degree B.S.N. (PDBSN) Option

For information on graduate-level programs, please visit the Graduate Studies section of this Catalogue.

Requirements for Completion of the B.S.N. Degree

Time Limit for Completion of Degree

B.S.N. Program

All courses to be counted for the degree must be completed within six years of enrolment in the program. Extensions may be granted under certain circumstances for those individuals who are making steady progress towards successful completion of the program. Such cases are reviewed upon receiving a written request from the student.

Post-Degree B.S.N. (PDBSN) Option

All courses must be completed within three years of commencing the first nursing course. Extensions may be granted under certain circumstances for those individuals who are making steady progress towards successful completion of the program. Such cases are reviewed upon receiving a written request from the student.

Transfer Credit

Although advanced credit toward the nursing degree can be given for course work completed at a university other than the USask, a minimum of 60% of the total course credits must be taken at the USask (excluding the pre-professional year requirements). A minimum of 63 credit units in years 2, 3 and 4 must be completed at the USask.

Students with prior university credit(s) are advised to contact the College of Nursing to ensure proper sequencing and granting of transfer credit(s). Students wishing to take a course from another post-secondary institution must obtain written permission from the College of Nursing.

  1. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and the curriculum is approved by the College of Registered Nurses of Saskatchewan (CRNS) and accredited by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN). As such, students enrolled in the College of Nursing undergraduate programs are expected to take the approved classes from the College of Nursing. Classes that are exceptions to this include: Anatomy and Physiology (NURS 207.3 and NURS 208.3), Microbiology (MCIM 223.3), Research Methods (NURS 205.3) and the Restricted Nursing Elective.3.
  2. Classes taken prior to admission into the College of Nursing undergraduate program will be considered for transfer credit, if less than 6 years old from the time of admission.
  3. A grade will be assigned for credit only if the course was taken from USask.  When two or more courses are used to meet the requirement of one course, a weighted average will be calculated.
  4. An equivalent course from USask will be considered for credit into the undergraduate nursing program as a nursing course only if the grade achieved in that course was 60% or greater.
  5. All courses taken from other institutions and granted transfer credit will not have a grade assigned for use in calculating averages.
  6. An equivalent course from another institution will be considered for transfer credit into the undergraduate nursing program only if the student received credit for the course at the other institution and the grade achieved was 60% or greater.
  7. There is no course equivalency for transfer credit in the undergraduate nursing program for NURS 450.9 "Practice Integration."
  8. A standardized 5-station OSCE reflecting key skills from NURS 202.3 and/or NURS 203.3 and a Care Plan case study, with a pass of 80% or greater, will be completed as PLAR credit for all students requesting exemption from NURS 202.3 and/or 203.3.

Note: As per an existing agreement, LPN’s who graduated from Saskatchewan Polytechnic after 2008, will automatically receive credit for NURS 202.3.

Promotion and Graduation

  1. Students are required to maintain an annual weighted average of 60% in each of years two, three, and four. The annual weighted average includes both nursing and non-nursing courses.
  2. Students who do not achieve an annual weighted average of 60% may be required to discontinue.
  3. Decisions regarding continuation in the program are:
    • Annual weighted average 58% or below – student is required to discontinue
    • Annual weighted average above 58% and below 60% - student is put on probation and required to repeat any courses with marks below 55% and any course with a mark between 55 – 59% are recommended to be repeated.
  4. Students with an annual weighted average below 65% will be sent a warning letter stating they are required to maintain an average of 60%.  If the annual weighted average is over 75%, a congratulatory letter will be sent.
  5. Students may be required to discontinue their studies at any point in their nursing program for reasons other than academic, if it is considered in the best interest of the profession or if continuation in the program is deemed to be unsafe to themselves or others.
  6. To graduate, students must have passed all required courses in the program with a minimum cumulative weighted average of 60%.
  7. The top 20% of students will receive distinction and/or great distinction; of that 20%, the top 5% will be awarded great distinction and the remaining 15% will be awarded distinction.

Failure to Meet the Requirements for Progress or Graduation

If a student has not met the above requirements, a course of action deemed appropriate will be determined by the college. The course of action required of the student may include one or more of the following:

(a) If a supplemental examination is granted, pass that examination.

(b) Repeat the failed course(s).

(c) Take those courses deemed advisable by the program to constitute a make-up year.

(d) Repeat some or all courses taken during the year.

(e) Be placed on Probation under the conditions determined by the college.

(f) Discontinue studies in the program for one academic term or year.

(g) Discontinue studies in the program.

Grade Assignment

A full explanation of the grading system and the literal descriptors associated with percentage grades will be provided to students in each course.

  1. A student will be assigned the grade earned unless otherwise specified.

  2. Some nursing courses have an essential component that must be passed in order to pass the course. A student that has failed an essential component of a course, as defined in a course syllabus, will not be eligible to write the final exam and will not receive credit for the course. In the event that the essential component is failed, but the computed final grade results in a passing mark, an N (No credit) grade will be added to the computed percentile grade. A course with an N Grade assigned must be successfully repeated for the student to progress in the B.S.N. program.

  3. A student that has not completed an essential component of a course, as defined in a course syllabus, will not be eligible to write the final exam and will not receive credit for the course. In the event that the essential component is not completed, but the computed final grade results in a passing mark, a final grade of 49% will be submitted along with a grade comment of INF (Incomplete Failure).

  4. If a student has completed a course that is required, but is given an N or an INF grade, it will count towards the weighted average until it is successfully completed.

  5. Some clinical courses have essential components, as specified in the course syllabus, that must be successfully completed to continue in the clinical experience. When such an essential component is failed, the student will not be allowed to continue in the clinical experience. The student can withdraw at this time. In the event that the withdraw deadline date has passed, the student will be given the grade earned.

  6. Students who withdraw from a class will not be eligible to submit an academic appeal. 

  7. In courses that have multiple clinical components, a student must pass each clinical component in order to pass the course.

  8. A minimal pass grade of  50-59%, as per the Literal Descriptors, in clinical is only allowed once throughout the program. If a student obtains a minimal pass a second time, the student will receive an N (No credit) grade and will be required to repeat the course and receive a minimum satisfactory grade of  60-69%, as per the Literal Descriptors, in that clinical course and in all subsequent clinical courses.

Completion of Work

  1. Students are required to complete all course components to receive credit for a course.
  2. Unless prior arrangements have been made with the course instructor, 5% from the earned grade for that assignment will be deducted for each calendar day that course work is late.  A grade of zero will be applied to all assignments not submitted 5 working days after the due date, without prior written permission of the course instructor.
  3. Unless other arrangements have been made with the course facilitator, the last day for acceptance of assignment will be the final day of class in that course.
  4. It should be noted that even if assignments will receive a grade of 0% because of late penalties (see above), they must still be completed in order to fulfill course requirements

Repeating a Course

Section 1. Applies to all students

  1. Students repeating any courses must meet with an academic advisor to complete a change of planned progression in the program
  2. If a student achieves a grade of 60% or higher, a course can be repeated only with permission of the Associate/Assistant Dean at the appropriate site.
  3. If a course is repeated, the repeated course must be passed, and the grade of the repeated course will be used in calculating the weighted average.
  4. Undergraduate students in the College of Nursing may attempt a course twice. Withdrawals from a course after the add/drop deadline will be considered an attempt.
  5. A student who fails or withdraws from a course for a second time will be required to discontinue study in the College of Nursing and will be advised of this in writing.
  6. In exceptional circumstances, permission may be granted by the College for a third and final attempt in a course. Students wishing to attempt a course for the third time must submit a written request to the site specific Associate/Assistant Dean within 30 days of their failure or withdrawal from the course. 
  7. Students who have had a delay in their program progression may be required to repeat courses, as determined by the associate/ assistant deans. 

Section 2. Applies to students admitted prior to September 2021

  1. Undergraduate students in the College of Nursing may attempt a clinical course twice. Withdrawals from a clinical course after the add/drop deadline will be considered an attempt.
  2. A student who fails or withdraws from a clinical course for a second time will be required to discontinue study in the College of Nursing and will be advised of this in writing.
  3. In exceptional circumstances, permission may be granted by the college for a third and final attempt in a clinical course. Students wishing to attempt a clinical course for the third time must submit a written request to the site specific Associate/Assistant Dean within 30 days of their failure or withdrawal from the course.  Clinical courses being attempted for a third time may require mandatory remedial course work.
  • Students who are granted a third attempt at a clinical nursing course may not progress into other clinical courses until they have successfully passed their third attempt.
  • A student who fails or withdraws from a course for a third time will be required to discontinue study in the College of Nursing and will be advised of this in writing.

Withdrawals

Students may withdraw from a course, but should note that a Fall Term course must be dropped by November 15 (or February 15 for a course extending over both terms), and March 15 for a Winter Term course. Be advised that if you are enrolled in an open learning course that add/drop deadlines may be different.  Contact an academic advisors for more information.

Before withdrawing from a course, students are encouraged to discuss this action with their advisor.

Progression Standards for Clinical Nursing Courses

1. A minimal pass grade of 50 - 59, as per the Literal Descriptors, in a clinical nursing course is only allowed once throughout the program. If a student obtains a minimal pass a second time, the student will receive an N (no credit) grade, alongside the percentage grade, and will be required to repeat the course and receive a minimum grade of 60 - 69, as per the Literal Descriptors, in that clinical course and in all subsequent clinical courses (Please refer to College of Nursing Grade Assignment Policy).
2. A failing grade (< 50%) or a withdrawal from a clinical nursing course is allowed only once throughout the program. If a student obtains a failing grade or withdraws a second time from any clinical course they will be required to discontinue from the College of Nursing.
3. Withdrawals after the add/drop deadline from a clinical nursing course will be considered an attempt.
4. Students who have failed or withdrawn from a clinical nursing course (after the add/drop deadline) twice may apply for a third attempt by submitting a written request to the site-specific Academic Advisor within 30 days of their failure or withdrawal from the course.
5. Students who are granted a third attempt at a clinical nursing course may not progress to other clinical courses until they have successfully passed their third attempt.
6. Mandatory remedial course work may be required when a third attempt is granted.
7. A student who fails or withdraws from any clinical nursing course for a third time will be required to discontinue from the College of Nursing and will be advised of this in writing.
8. Students who fail or withdraw from any course must meet with an Academic Advisor to complete a change in program.

NOTE:
1. Dropping a class before the add/drop deadline will not be considered or tracked as an attempt at the course.
2. This policy comes into effect for students admitted in the 2021-22 academic year. Students admitted prior to September 2021 will follow the Repeating a Course Policy.

Attendance

  1. Regular and punctual attendance is expected of all students for all orientations, classes, seminars, labs and clinical experiences. A student who is consistently late and/or absent from classes, seminars and/or labs may be unable to meet the course requirements, and may not be able to receive credit for the course.
  2. If a student misses more than 10% of clinical/lab experiences in a course, the student may be unable to meet the course requirements, and, thus, may not receive credit for the course.
  3. If a student is unable to attend or will be late for a lab or clinical experience, the student must notify the instructor prior to the start of the learning experience.
  4. Attendance at classes, labs and/or seminars for the particular course may be designated as mandatory. Students must attend these learning experiences in order to receive a pass in the course.
  5. If an instructor deems a student unsafe or unprepared for a learning experience, the student may be excluded from the experience; thus, the student may not be able to meet the course requirements.

Student Appeals

Please note that appeals of evaluation, grading, and academic standing are governed by university-wide council regulations.

Midterm Exams

  1. A student who is absent from a midterm examination through no fault of his or her own, for medical, compassionate, or other valid reasons, may contact the faculty member for the course in which they are registered for a deferred exam. Such application must be made within three business days of the missed examination and be accompanied by supporting documentary evidence.
  2. Faculty and/or the College of Nursing will not accommodate a request to reschedule a midterm exam because of personal reasons. Midterm examinations can be scheduled at any time during the academic term. Students should avoid making prior travel or other commitments that may conflict with scheduled exams.
  3. Missing a midterm examination due to personal or travel related conflicts may result in a midterm exam grade of 0% being assigned.
  4. In some exceptional circumstances, faculty may consider combining the weight of the missed midterm exam with the final exam. Students need to speak with the specific course faculty member prior to the missed midterm examination for this consideration
  5. If the midterm and final exam are combined and the resulting weight of these components exceeds 50% of the final grade, approval must be sought from the Chair of the Undergraduate Education Committee.

Deferred and Supplemental Examinations

University level policies related to deferred and supplemental examinations are outlined in the University Council Regulations on Examinations.

*Supplemental and deferred examinations in the Post-Degree B.S.N. Option may have a shorter time frame. Please contact the College of Nursing.

Supplemental Final Examinations

  1. To be eligible to apply for a supplemental final examination, where the final exam is NOT an essential component, a student must have obtained a final mark of 40-49% in the course and have failed the final exam. In addition, the student must have a weighted overall average and weighted nursing average of at least 60% for the academic term.*
  2. To be eligible to apply for a supplemental final examination, where the final exam IS an essential component, a student must have obtained a final mark of at least 40% in the course and have failed the final exam. In addition, the student must have a weighted overall average and a weighted nursing average of at least 60% for the academic term.
  3. Supplemental examinations must be applied for within three (3) weeks of the end of the examination period.*
  4. No supplemental examination will be granted for courses that do not have a final examination.
  5. University level policies related to supplemental examinations are outlined in the University Council Regulations on Examinations
  6. Supplemental examinations will not be granted for clinical experience

Course Information

College of Nursing courses are listed under subject codes NURS, PHAR, MCIM, and PHSI in the Course Descriptions.