Are you a caring and compassionate individual who is interested in being a key member of a health-care team? If you have good observation, communication and problem-solving skills and a strong desire to provide quality patient care, you may want to consider a career as a Licensed Practical Nurse.
The two-year Practical Nursing diploma program taken face-to-face at the Cranbrook campus is designed to help prepare graduates to give qualified professional care to individuals and families in a variety of settings. Graduates are eligible to apply to write REx-PN exams for licensure as Practical Nurses.
Within this curriculum, caring is viewed as a core concept. Practical Nurses foster client empowerment in care planning and decision making, and are cognizant of their unique biological, psychosocial, spiritual, cultural and environmental complexity. Practical Nurses care for clients across the lifespan, providing safe, knowledgeable and integrated care through critical thinking and clinical judgment.
In order to meet requirements for clinical practica, students may have to travel to regional areas in the East Kootenay.
Upon completion of your second year, you will be eligible to write the Regulatory Exam – Practical Nurse. You are then able to apply to be registered with the British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM) in order to become licensed as a Practical Nurse.
Why Consider a Practical Nursing Career?
- Our aging and growing population will require more health services, ensuring a need for LPNs.
- According to the British Columbia Labour Market Outlook: 2022 Edition there will be 4,760 job openings for Licensed Practical Nurses by 2032.
- According to Work BC the annual provincial median salary for an LPN is $61,861.
Practical Nursing Diploma Requirements:
|PPNP 101||Anatomy & Physiology for Practical Nursing||3||72|
|PPNP 102||Professional Practice 1||2||25|
|PPNP 103||Professional Communication 1||2||35|
|PPNP 104||Variations in Health 1||3||40|
|PPNP 105||Health Promotion 1||2||30|
|PPNP 106||Pharmacology 1||2||30|
|PPNP 107||Integrated Nursing Practice 1||4||135|
|PPNP 108||Consolidated Practice Experience 1||2||90|
* Note: Students must pass PPNP 101 to continue in Level 1 of the program.
|PPNP 111||Professional Practice 2||1||20|
|PPNP 112||Professional Communication 2||2||30|
|PPNP 113||Variations in Health 2||3||45|
|PPNP 114||Health Promotion 2||2||30|
|PPNP 115||Pharmacology 2||2||30|
|PPNP 116||Integrated Nursing Practice 2||5||180|
|PPNP 117||Consolidated Practice Experience 2||3||120|
|PPNP 201||Professional Practice 3||1||20|
|PPNP 202||Professional Communication 3||1||20|
|PPNP 203||Variations in Health 3||3||45|
|PPNP 204||Health Promotion 3||3||36|
|PPNP 205||Integrated Nursing Practice 3||4||120|
|PPNP 206||Consolidated Practice Experience 3||2||65|
|PPNP 211||Professional Practice 4||1||20|
|PPNP 212||Professional Communication 4||1||20|
|PPNP 213||Variations in Health 4||3||50|
|PPNP 214||Health Promotion 4||2||24|
|PPNP 215||Integrated Nursing Practice 4||5||180|
|PPNP 216||Consolidated Practice Experience 4||4||200|
|PPNP 217||Transition to Preceptorship||2||30|
Note: In order to meet requirements for clinical practica, students may have to travel to areas outside Cranbrook. Students are responsible for their own transportation and living costs.
Level 1 consists of 15 weeks of classroom/lab instruction in Cranbrook and a 3 week Consolidated Practice Experience.
Note: PPNP 101 must be successfully completed (minimum grade of 65%) for the student to continue in level 1 of the program.
PPNP-101 – Anatomy & Physiology for Practical Nursing
This course is designed to provide the student with an overview of the structure (anatomy) and function (physiology) of 12 body systems. Students also learn various health promotion strategies that assist in maintaining optimal function of these body systems. Healthcare terminology is introduced in this course.
PPNP-102 – Professional Practice 1
This theory course provides an introduction to the profession of Practical Nursing and the legislation that informs PN practice within British Columbia. Course topics include the history of nursing and specifically the evolution of Practical Nursing within the Canadian health care system. This course also explores the philosophy and foundational concepts of the Provincial Practical Nursing Program.
PPNP-103 – Professional Communication 1
This course provides learners with the foundational knowledge for caring and professional communication in nursing. An experiential and self-reflective approach is used to develop self-awareness and interpersonal communication skills in the context of safe, competent and collaborative nursing practice. Topics include communication theory, the nurse-client relationship, therapeutic communication, cross-cultural communication and effective teamwork.
PPNP-104 – Variations in Health 1
This introductory course provides learners with the foundations of disease and illness across the lifespan. Students will gain an understanding of pathophysiological alterations of body systems, as well as nursing management of disease and illness across the lifespan (with an emphasis on interventions and treatment). Cultural diversity in healing practices will be explored, as well as the incorporation of evidenced-informed practice.
PPNP-105 – Health Promotion 1
This course develops a beginning knowledge of normal growth and development, and introduces the concepts of health promotion, health inequities and the determinants of health. Topics include disease prevention, health enhancement, health protection, health restoration/recovery care and support.
PPNP-106 – Pharmacology 1
This introductory course examines the principles of pharmacology required to administer medications in a safe and professional manner. Medication administration requires the application of the nursing process for clinical decision making. Various routes of medication administration are introduced, and complementary, Indigenous, alternative remedies and polypharmacy across the lifespan are also explored.
PPNP-107 – Integrated Nursing Practice 1
This course emphasizes the art and science of nursing, focusing on the development of basic nursing care and assessment. Learners apply nursing knowledge through the practice of clinical decision making, nursing assessment skills; and nursing interventions aimed at the promotion of health, independence and comfort. A variety of approaches (e.g., simulation) is used to assist learners to integrate theory from other Level 1 courses.
PPNP-108 – Consolidated Practice Experience 1
The first practice experience provides learners with an opportunity to integrate theory from Level 1 coursework into practice. Learners gain experience in various settings with a focus on the healthy client. This practice experience emphasizes the role of the Practical Nurse, personal care skills, organization of care, focused assessment, beginning medication administration and professional communication.
Level 2 consists of 12 weeks of classroom/lab instruction in Cranbrook and a 4 week Consolidated Practice Experience 2.
PPNP-111 – Professional Practice 2
This course examines the legislation influencing PN practice with clients experiencing chronic illness and those in residential care settings. Specific professional issues such as responsibility, accountability, ethical practice, and leadership relevant to the PN role in residential care will be explored. Critical thinking and decision making specific to the care of clients with the chronic health challenges and inter-professional practice will also be addressed.
PPNP-112 – Professional Communication 2
This course provides learners with an opportunity to develop professional communication skills with the older adult and clients requiring end of life care. Interprofessional communication knowledge and skills are further developed.
PPNP-113 – Variations in Health 2
This course focuses on pathophysiology as it relates to the aging process and selected chronic illnesses. The main focus is on the care of older adults experiencing a health challenge. Cultural diversity in healing practices will be explored as well as evidence informed research and practice.
PPNP-114 – Health Promotion 2
This course focuses on health promotion as it relates to the aging process including exploration of health promotion activities aimed at supporting clients to maintain their health. The concepts of health promotion, physical and mental wellness, normal aging changes and continued independence are examined.
PPNP-115 – Pharmacology 2
This course builds on Pharmacology I to increase learners’ understanding of pharmacotherapeutics prescribed for illnesses clients experience across the lifespan. Topics include drug classifications and links with common diseases/illness based on a body system approach and drug resistance.
PPNP-116 – Integrated Nursing Practice 2
This course builds on the foundation of Level I and emphasizes the development of clinical decision making, nursing assessments and interventions to promote the health of older adults. A variety of approaches (e.g. simulation) helps learners to integrate theory from Level I and II courses to provide safe, competent and ethical nursing care with older adults.
PPNP-117 – Consolidated Practice Experience 2
This practice experience provides learners with the opportunity to integrate theory from Level I and II courses into practice. Learners practice with aging clients and/or those with chronic illness in residential care settings. Medication administration, nursing care, organization, comprehensive health assessment, wound care and introduction to leadership are emphasized in this course.
Level 3 consists of 11 weeks classroom, lab instruction and practicum work in Cranbrook including Consolidated Practice Experience 3.
PPNP-201 – Professional Practice 3
This course integrates the concepts from previous professional practice courses and introduces learners to practice in the community. The role of the Practical Nurse as leader is emphasized in interactions with clients and their families as well as other health care providers.
PPNP-202 – Professional Communication 3
This course focuses on specific professional communication skills used with clients and care providers across the lifespan requiring care in the community.
PPNP-203 – Variations in Health 3
This course focuses on the continuum of care and the development of knowledge related to health challenges managed in the community setting. Pathophysiology and nursing care of clients requiring home health care, rehabilitation and supportive services in the community are explored. As well, cultural diversity in healing approaches are explored along with the incorporation of evidence informed research and practice.
PPNP-204 – Health Promotion 3
This course is focused on health promotion as it relates to the continuum of care across the lifespan. Health promotion in the context of mental illness, physical and developmental disabilities and maternal/child health is highlighted. Normal growth and development from conception to middle adulthood is addressed.
PPNP-205 – Integrated Nursing Practice 3
This course builds on the theory and practice from Level I and II. Through a variety of approaches (e.g. simulation), learners will continue to develop knowledge and practice of comprehensive nursing assessment, planning for and interventions with clients experiencing multiple health challenges in a variety of settings.
PPNP-206 – Consolidated Practice Experience 3
This practice experience will introduce learners to community care settings and an opportunity to apply and adapt knowledge gained in Levels I, II and III within a continuum of care for clients across the lifespan. Learners may gain experience through simulation and in a variety of settings with a focus on concepts outlined in Integrated Nursing Practice III.
Level 4 consists of 12 weeks classroom and lab instruction, 7 weeks Consolidated Practice Experience, and 7 weeks Preceptorship.
PPNP-211 – Professional Practice 4
This course prepares learners for the role of the Practical Nurse in caring for clients with acute presentation of illness. Legislation influencing PN practice, specific professional practice issues, and
ethical practice pertinent to PN practice in acute care environments are explored. Practice issues that occur across the lifespan are considered. Collaborative practice with other health care team members and specifically the working partnership with RNs in the acute care setting are examined.
PPNP-212 – Professional Communication 4
The focus of this course is on the advancement of professional communication within the acute care setting caring for clients across the lifespan. The practice of collaboration with health care team members and clients will be further developed.
PPNP-213 – Variations in Health 4
This course focuses on pathophysiology as it relates to acute disease and illness of clients across the lifespan, specifically the care of the client experiencing acute illness including nursing interventions and treatment options. Implications of the acute exacerbation of chronic illness are addressed. Cultural diversity in healing practices are explored as well as evidenced informed research and practice.
PPNP-214 – Health Promotion 4
This course focuses on health promotion in the context of caring for clients experiencing an acute exacerbation of chronic illness or an acute episode of illness. It also examines health promoting strategies during hospitalization to improve or help maintain clients’ health status after discharge occurs. Topics also include how to prepare clients for discharge from care through teaching and learning of health promoting strategies.
PPNP-215 – Integrated Nursing Practice 4
This course emphasizes the development of nursing skills aimed at promoting health and healing with individuals experiencing acute health challenges across the lifespan. A variety of approaches (e.g. simulation) helps learners build on theory and practice from Levels I, II and III to integrate new knowledge and skills relevant to the acute care setting.
PPNP-216 – Consolidated Practice Experience 4
This practice experience provides learners with the opportunity to integrate theory from all courses into the role of the Practical Nurse in the acute care setting and other practice areas as appropriate. Learners will focus on clients with exacerbations of chronic illness and/or acute illness across the lifespan and will consolidate knowledge and skills such as: post-operative care, surgical wound management, intravenous therapy, focused assessment and clinical decision-making in acute care settings.
PPNP-217 – Transition to Preceptorship
Transition to Preceptorship prepares the learner for the final practice experience. Simulation experiences and self-directed learning provides the learner with increased competence and confidence in their final practice experience.
PPNP-218 – Preceptorship
This final practice experience provides an opportunity for learners to demonstrate integration and consolidation of knowledge, skills and abilities within the realities of the workplace and become practice ready. This experience may occur through a variety of practice experience models, including the preceptorship model, under the immediate supervision of a single, fully qualified and experienced LPN, RN or RPN and/or within the context of a collaborative learning environment as a participating team member.
- Secondary school graduation or equivalent
- Minimum 65% in either English Studies 12, English First Peoples 12, ENGL 090, or equivalent
- Minimum 60% in either Foundations of Math 11, MATH 080, MATH 082, Pre-Calculus 11, or equivalent
- Minimum 60% in either BIOL 090, Anatomy and Physiology 12, or equivalent
- Human Anatomy and Physiology for Practical Nurses with a minimum grade of 65% must be achieved before taking Variations in Health 1, Health Promotion 1, Pharmacology 1, Integrated Nursing Practice 1 and Consolidated Practice 1
Notes for Admission and Progression:
Once you are admitted and begin the program, you must complete Human Anatomy and Physiology for Practical Nurses (PPNP 101) with a minimum grade of 65% before being permitted to progress in to Variations in Health 1, Health Promotion 1, Pharmacology 1, Integrated Nursing Practice 1 and Consolidated Nursing Practice 1.
English Language Proficiency Requirements
- Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to achieve the following scores in one of the two tests below:
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with minimum scores of:
- Speaking: 7.0
- Listening: 7.5
- Reading: 6.5
- Writing: 7.0
- Overall Band Score: 7.0
- Canadian English Language Benchmarks Assessment for Nurses (CELBAN) with minimum scores of:
- Speaking: 8.0
- Listening: 10.0
- Reading: 8.0
- Writing: 7.0
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with minimum scores of:
- It is the applicant’s responsibility to arrange for assessment through Student Services or an Education Advisor at the College.
Additional Admission Requirements:
- Practical Nursing Requisite Skills and Abilities Declaration
- Complete a criminal record check through the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General Criminal Records Review Program*
- Notice of Collection, Use and Disclosure Agreement
- CPR for Health Care Providers BLS or HCP or equivalent, to be kept current for the duration of the program. Acceptable CPR courses must include a face-to-face component and may be combined with a first aid course
- BCCDC Immunizations for BC Health Care Workers
- Annual influenza immunization
- COVID-19 vaccination
- Negative TB testing results, must be completed no earlier than 8 months before the beginning of the PN Program
*Details of practicum requirements will be included in your admissions package.
Thank you for your interest in applying to be a student in one of our Health and Human Services programs at the College of the Rockies. As a successful applicant, you will receive or have received a request to provide documentation confirming you are current in immunizations and First Aid/CPR.
Immunization services in BC are in flux as Public Health Departments must regularly reprioritize resource distribution. Public Health agencies will do their best to accommodate College of the Rockies student immunizations by individual appointment. Immunizations are also available through local pharmacists and Travel Clinics. We recommend that students continue to pursue obtaining required immunizations to complete program admission and practicum placement requirements as soon as available.
It is the responsibility of the student to continue to actively seek to obtain and complete these requirements.
Obtaining and completing these admission requirements can be more difficult, your admission into the Health and Human Services programs will not be held up while you wait to complete these requirements.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter
In accordance with provincial/territorial public health authorities, in-person training options are now available in certain jurisdictions. Red Cross Training Partners will adopt safe classroom protocols to promote the safety of all participants. Please check for blended delivery options as well to support your training needs. College of the Rockies accepts blended format CPR certifications (online theory supported by face-to-face practical application), but does not accept certifications obtained exclusively online. Students are expected to continue to seek CPR recertification, as courses come available, and to update their certification as soon as possible.
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Level C or a higher level of CPR certification, current for the duration of the program. Certificate must indicate the level of CPR and when it expires. Acceptable CPR courses must include a face-to-face component and may be combined with a first aid course. Please check with the course provider prior to enroling, and ensure that the course is CPR Level C. CPR Level A and Level B are not accepted.
- One of the following first aid certifications:
|St. John Ambulance Standard First Aid||Workplace Emergency First Aid|
|St. John Ambulance Emergency First Aid||Red Cross Standard First Aid|
|Lifesaving Society Emergency First Aid||Emergency Medical Responder|
|Lifesaving Standard First Aid||Primary Care Paramedic|
|Occupational First Aid Level 1, 2 or 3||Advanced Care Paramedic|
|Red Cross Emergency First Aid BC||Critical Care Paramedic|
*Practicum based learning is an essential component of this program. A criminal record may reduce an applicant’s access to the program and/or to required practicum opportunities. Applicants disclosing a criminal record are guided to explore other options. Depending on the nature of the offence, options may include applying for a pardon. Any associated cost is the responsibility of the student.
Tuition and Fees:
|Tuition Year 1:||$6,977.93|
|Tuition Year 2:||$6,889.68|
|Student Association Fee:||$177.60|
|Bus Pass Fee:||$149.50|
|Health and Dental Fee:||$459.00|
*These prices are for domestic students and may not be 100% accurate. However, these estimates will give you an adequate idea of tuition and fees for our programs. These prices do not include textbook costs. All prices are subject to change. Tuition fees include an alumni fee, student activity fees, and a student technology fee. In certain cases a materials and supply fee may also be included. For more information, visit: Tuition and Fees.
Tuition and Fees for International Students:
|Tuition Year 1:||$17,100.99|
|Tuition Year 2:||$16,884.72|
|Student Association Fee:||$149.50|
|Bus Pass Fee:||$177.60|
|Health and Dental Fee:||$459.00|
*These prices are for international students and may not be 100% accurate. However, these estimates will give you an adequate idea of tuition and fees for our programs. These prices do not include textbook costs. All prices are subject to change. Tuition fees include an alumni fee, student activity fees, and a student technology fee. In certain cases a materials and supply fee may also be included. For more information, visit: Tuition and Fees.
Loan Forgiveness for Practical Nursing student graduates staying in BC and working in an under serviced community:
Graduates from eligible schools in nursing (including practical nursing, nurse practitioners, registered psychiatric nurses and registered nurses) will have all outstanding BC Student Loan debt forgiven at a rate of 20 percent per year of practice in an underserved community. They must agree to fill a vacancy at a publicly funded facility in a full-time, part-time or casual-on-call capacity.
Students in Nursing programs are eligible for up to a $2,000 bursary if they apply for a BC student loan. They will automatically be assessed when they apply. This is based on financial need.
For more information on loan forgiveness visit the StudentAid BC website at www.studentaidbc.ca
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