Sep 29, 2020  
2018-2019 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing, B.S.

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Chair: Dr. Rita Trofino; Program Director: Dr. Kim Forst

BSN Program Purpose:

The BSN Program prepares generalists in nursing to assist persons, families, and communities toward the goal of health throughout life. A baccalaureate education in nursing provides each student with the knowledge base for practicing professional nursing. The curriculum is based on a liberal arts foundation in the Judeo-Christian tradition and utilizes the AACN Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice within an integrated caring curriculum.

The faculty of the Department of Nursing has embraced the concept of the learner as an individual who has acquired the self-concept of being responsible for one’s self and of being self-directed. We view learning as a self-motivated and voluntary endeavor on the part of our nursing students. We also have, in response to our caring curriculum, moved away from the traditional role of teacher to that of facilitator of learning. Upon completion of the curriculum, the graduate possesses a foundation for graduate study.

The baccalaureate nursing program at Saint Francis University has full approval by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing and is  accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW Suite 750, Washington, DC. 20001, (202) 887-6791. A graduate is eligible to sit for the R.N. licensure exam, NCLEX-RN®.

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Synthesize knowledge from the humanities and sciences, advanced nursing concepts, and applicable evidenced-based practice to enhance the art and science of nursing care.
  2. Espouse a life-giving mode of being derived from The Prayer of Saint Francis for use in interprofessional communication and collaboration to establish therapeutic and human caring relationships with individuals, families, and communities.
  3. Utilize technology and informatics to improve the delivery of nursing care, quality of care, health care outcomes, and the delivery of health education to multiple populations.
  4. Employ the caring-nursing process to maximize wellness in the delivery of culturally competent professional nursing care for individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations across the lifespan and across the continuum of health care environments.
  5. Affirm professionalism in the art and science of nursing care by understanding the ramifications of health care policy, finance, and regulatory environments on nursing care.
  6. Assume the professional nursing roles of caregiver, teacher, advocate, and care manager by utilizing basic organizational and systems leadership skills to promote quality patient-centered care and patient safety.

Admission to the BSN Nursing Program:

Candidates for the Baccalaureate nursing Program will be admitted to Saint Francis University as a nursing student with full or provisional acceptance. One freshman class is admitted each fall semester and the number of students admitted each year is based on availability of educational and clinical resources. All applicants are considered on the basis of their qualifications regardless of age, race, national origin, religion, or sex. Transfer students are required to have a meeting with a Department of Nursing faculty.


Admission criteria for High School and First-semester college student

  • Graduated from an approved secondary school or submission of a state-approved GED
  • Completed work equal to a standard academic high school coursework with a minimum of 16 units, including 4 units of English, 3 units of Social Studies, 2 units of Math, (one of which is Algebra), and 2 units of Science with a related laboratory, per the PA State Board of Nursing Regulations.  The Nursing Department requires the addition of the following in regards to the high school requirements:
    • Completed Math requirement, which includes Algebra, with a grade of “B” or higher.
    • Completed minimum of two units of Natural Science with a recommended grade of “B” or higher with one unit of Biology (with labs), Chemistry (with labs).
  • Have an earned 3.0 high school GPA or higher.
  • Earned a minimum SAT score of 1080 or a minimum ACT score of 21.
  • Students with SAT scores between 980-1079 or minimum ACT score of 19 may be admitted on provisional status if all other criteria has been met.
  • High school extracurricular activities, community service, and service learning projects are highly recommended.
Admission criteria for transfer students:

Students requesting transfer from within the university or other institutions will be reviewed for acceptance and be placed on a space available basis. Decisions regarding the admission of a transfer student will be made on an individual basis. Transfer students requesting admission into Saint Francis University’s nursing program must meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant must have a 3.0 cumulative GPA from the transferring institution.
  • Transfer applicants with less than 28 earned college credits need to have earned a minimum SAT score of 1080 or a minimum ACT score of 21 (within five years). Students with SAT scores between 980-1079 or a minimum ACT score of 19 may be admitted on provisional status if all other criteria have been met.
  • If an applicant has not taken the SAT or ACT within five years of the application date, he/she must take an admission test, as determined by the nursing program.
  • Students who take nursing entrance exams; i.e. TEAS, NLN etc. at other Universities or programs of nursing and fail these exams will not be admitted into the Nursing Program at Saint Francis University.
  • Transfer applicants with greater than 28 earned college credits will be evaluated on course work completed and earned GPA.
  • The following Natural Sciences courses (with a lab) will be considered for transfer credit.
  • Biology I (equivalent to BIOL 111), Human Chemistry (equivalent to CHEM 113), and Microbiology (equivalent to BIOL 214)
  • Transfer students admitted into the nursing program will be required to take Anatomy and Physiology I and II (BIOL 205 and BIOL 206) at Saint Francis University.
  • Any student applying for transfer into SFU’s nursing program can only have two or less repeated non-nursing courses. This includes repeating pre-requisite and/or one of the science courses for a higher grade.  Withdrawals from any pre-requisite course count as a repeated course. (Math 107, SOC101, PSYC101, BIOL111, BIOL205, BIOL206, BIOL214 or CHEM113). If a science course has a theory and lab component, the theory and lab component will be considered as separate repeated courses.
  • The transfer applicant must have an overall 2.6 GPA in the required Natural Science courses completed from the transferring institution.
  • If a transfer applicant is transferring from another nursing program, the following admission criteria will apply:
    • The candidate must be in good standing to progress in his/her current nursing program and he/she must submit the SFU Nursing Evaluation Form signed by the department chair of his/her current school.
    • Nursing courses taken at other institutions will be evaluated for transfer credit based upon equivalent credits, content and clinical course components.
    • The applicant can have only one repeated nursing course from the transferring institution.  Any further failures of a Saint Francis University nursing course would result in dismissal from the program.The applicant can only have two or less repeated pre-requisite courses, natural science courses, or natural science labs transferred as a course equivalent to Saint Francis University. (equivalents to Math 107 SOC 101, PSYC 101, BIOL 111, BIOL 214, CHEM 113, or BIOL 205 and BIOL 206 if applicable)
    • Withdrawals from any nursing course, natural science, natural science lab, and/or pre-requisite course required at Saint Francis University are considered a repeated course. (equivalents to Math 107 SOC 101, PSYC 101, BIOL 111, BIOL 205, BIOL 206, BIOL 214, or CHEM 113)
  • Students in the Adult Degree & Continuing Education Pre-Nursing Concentration must take an admission test, as determined by the nursing program and have a 3.0 GPA upon transfer into the nursing program.

Progression in the Nursing Program Requirements:

Progression and continuance in the Nursing Program is based upon academic performance and successful achievement of nursing prerequisites, health maintenance, and adherence to Saint Francis University policies in the current University Catalog and Department of Nursing policies as stated in the current Student Handbook. The faculty of the Department of Nursing has the right and the responsibility for judging and evaluating the quality of the student’s achievement, both in the mastery of the theoretical content and in clinical competence.

  1. Students must earn a minimum grade of “C” in the  pre-requisite Natural Science and Social Science courses. A “C-” grade is not acceptable. The Natural Science courses include BIOL 111 Biology I, CHEM 113 Human Chemistry I, BIOL 214 Microbiology, BIOL 205 Anatomy and Physiology I, and BIOL 206 Anatomy and Physiology II. The Social Sciences include PSYCH 101 Intro to Psychology and SOC 101 General Sociology.
  2. Students must earn a cumulative minimum GPA of 2.6 or better in the Natural Science courses of  BIOL 111, CHEM 111, BIOL 214, BIOL 205 and BIOL 206 prior to entry into the professional phase of nursing in the junior year (300 Level)
  3. All Natural Science courses required by the Nursing Program that are taken at another institution and transferred into Saint Francis University will be used in the Natural Science GPA calculation, although they are not calculated into the student’s overall cumulative GPA.
  4. BIOL 205 Anatomy and Physiology I and BIOL 206 Anatomy and Physiology II must be taken at Saint Francis University.
  5. Students must earn a minimum overall cumulative GPA of 2.75 prior to entry into the professional phase of nursing in the junior year (300 Level).
  6. All students must pass a math proficiency exam with an 80% in the following courses: NURS 200, NURS 300, NURS 303 and NURS 401. The purpose of the examination is to determine the student’s ability to correctly calculate medication dosages in the clinical setting. Please refer to the policy on the Math Proficiency Exam found in the Student Handbook.
  7. A maximum of three (3) repeated courses  are permitted in the total curriculum of the Nursing Program which includes only one nursing course, and any  prerequisite Social Science or Natural Science course.
  8. Nursing majors MUST earn a minimum grade of “B-” (80%) in each nursing course in order to progress to the next course that requires a clinical laboratory component. The grading scale in the department is as follows: A = 92-100; B+ = 88-89; B = 82-87; B- = 80-81; C+ = 78-79; C = 72-77; C- = 70-71; D = 60-69; F = 0-59.
  9. Students must have their own transportation to clinical sites.
  10. A student who requests and receives a continuance or readmission is responsible for curricular changes in the program of nursing study which occur during his or her absence. A student follows the curriculum guide for the class which he or she joins upon returning to the program.
  11. Nursing students who leave the program for a year or more will be evaluated on an individual basis for a progression plan in the curriculum.
  12. Students are required to satisfactorily achieve program outcomes. Therefore, consideration may be  given to scholastic aptitude, academic achievement, personal qualities,  emotional health and minimum functional requirements/technical standards, necessary to fulfill the objectives of the program.

Nursing education requires that the accumulation of scientific knowledge be accompanied by the simultaneous acquisition of skills and professional attitudes and behaviors. The nursing degrees awarded by Saint Francis University at the completion of the educational process certifies that the individual has acquired a base of knowledge and skills requisite for the practice of nursing at the respective undergraduate or graduate level.

To this end, all courses in the curriculum must be completed successfully. In order to acquire the knowledge and skills to function in a variety of clinical situations and to render a wide spectrum of patient care, candidates for the undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing must have abilities and skills in five areas:

  • Observation
  • Communication
  • Motor
  • Conceptual Integrative
  • Behavioral- Social

Technological compensation can be made for some disabilities in certain of these areas, but a candidate should be able to perform in a reasonably independent manner and exercise independent judgment.

Reference: (Retrieved May 16, 2017)

           *Refer to Minimal Functional Requirements/Technical Standards Policy for details - BSN Student Handbook

  1. Students in the Nursing Program must comply with the requirements of the Professional Nursing Law of Pennsylvania. Students are required to submit to PA criminal clearances, FBI fingerprinting clearance, child abuse history clearance, drug testing, immunizations, physical exam and other requirements. Healthcare agencies have the right to refuse clinical placement or deny employment based on background checks.  A graduate of the Nursing program who has been convicted of a felony, is or was involved in drug abuse or has violated other rules of the licensure body, may not be permitted to take the licensing examination regardless of the student’s ability to complete college educational requirements. The student is required to notify the Dean of Nursing of any changes to the criminal record. The Nursing program reserves the right to require appropriate documentation as requested regarding previous felonies or violations.

The PA Board of nursing shall not issue a license or certificate to an applicant who has been convicted of a felonious act prohibited by the Act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64) known as the “The Controlled Substance Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act” or convicted of a Felony relating to a controlled substance in a court of law of the United States or any other state, territory or country unless: (1) at least ten (10) years have elapsed from the date of conviction; (2) the applicant satisfactorily demonstrated to the Board that he/she has made significant progress in personal rehabilitation since the conviction such that licensure of the applicant should not be expected to create a substantial risk of harm to the health and safety of patients or the public or a substantial risk of further criminal violation (3) the applicant otherwise satisfies the qualifications contained in or authorized by this act. As used in this subsection, the term “convicted” shall include a judgment, an admission of guilt or a plea of nolo contendere. An applicant’s statement on the application declaring the absence of a conviction shall be deemed satisfactory evidence of the absence of a conviction unless the Board has some evident to the contrary (Amended June 29, 2002, P. L. 651, No. 99).

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