Graduate Nursing Course Descriptions

Note: All courses require admission to the program or a petition with approval by the MSN program director.

BI 805 Cadaver Applications in Anatomy

Three semester hours
The focus of this graduate elective course centers on expansion of the graduate student’s foundational anatomy knowledge, brought from their undergraduate and clinical experiences through detailed cadaver dissection and lecture. Correlation of pertinent regional anatomy to clinical cases and/or areas of graduate study will be emphasized when relevant. Lecture and lab will be held at the University of Nebraska Medical Center Cadaver Lab. Course is set up as one lecture hour and two lab hours.
Prerequisite: BI 211 or equivalent.

GR 798 Essentials of Scholarly Writing

One semester hour
Essentials of scholarly writing offers one hour of credit for developing skills needed to compose evidence review of primary studies to address a focused question. A review of methods to organize the document will be emphasized as well as sharpening basic writing skills. Grammar, punctuation, improving study requirements needed for the scholarly document appropriate for the academic community.
Prerequisite: Admission to Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. 

NS 799 Role Transition

One semester hour
This course provides a framework for the transition to graduate education and serves as a foundation for the graduate program at Clarkson College. Students will learn how to effectively write scholarly papers, both in terms of format and APA style, and discuss the graduate student role as well as personal challenges to graduate education. This course provides an overview of the Clarkson College online course management platform. It includes a preview of the instructional methods and format of the courses, as well as special features within the course management platform.
Prerequisite: Admission to Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. 

NS 801 Theories and Concepts of Advanced Practice Roles

One semester hour
This course provides an overview of advanced practice nursing (APN). The history of advanced practice, educational requirements, licensure, credentialing, roles, scope of practice, prescriptive authority,  practice environments to include cultural aspects, ethical, legal, reimbursement, and business issues for Nurse Practitioners, Clinical Nurse Specialists, Certified Midwives, and Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists will be examined. The applicability to nursing leaders and educators will be explored.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799.

NS 803 Health Care Delivery Systems and Managed Care

Three semester hours
This course is an overview of the American health care system. It includes the study of the evolution and current state of health care services and insurance, health professionals, and health services financing. Health care delivery models will be studied including access to care, “best practice” standards, managed care functions, contracting and current health policy issues relating to health care delivery. There will be an emphasis on quality control, outcome expectancies, disparities in care, issues of diversity and the role of the graduate prepared nurse in the national health care system.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801

NS 804 Application and Evaluation of Theory in Nursing

Three semester hours
Provides a general introduction to the philosophy of science as it applies to social and human phenomena. The process of theory development is discussed and various theories of nursing are analyzed and critiqued. Emphasis is placed on the nurse caring framework, application to nursing theory, nursing research, and nursing practice in a variety of settings. Through integrating theory and practice, students are given the opportunity to formulate their own personal application of theory in professional, educational, research and service activities.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801

NS 806 Theories of Learning for the Nurse Educator

Three semester hours
This course focuses on selected theories of learning. Development and cognition are examined in relation to their philosophical underpinnings and basic assumptions. Theory application to program/course design, students/faculty interactions, and evaluation process are explored.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799 and NS 801.

NS 808 Nursing Law and Ethics

Three semester hours
This course provides various ethical frameworks and an overview of the U.S. legal system, as a basis for analyzing health care issues affecting health care institutions, individual patients, and health care providers. Overall legal-ethical issues common to health care administration, expanded practice nursing, and health care education are reviewed. Selected complex health care ethical dilem­mas, such as right to life, right to die, and health care allocation are examined.

Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799 and NS 801.

NS 812 Research Design and Methods

Three semester hours
The research process is examined in detail. Various research designs, both qualitative and quantitative, are analyzed in addition to exploring the relationship between research and practice. Topics such as human research protection, measurement tools, informed consent and evidence-based tables will be examined. The course will prepare the student to appraise published research studies, both qualitative and quantitative, and appropriately apply research finding to guide evidence-based practice.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 847, NS 801, NS 804, and NS 830.

NS 822 Curriculum Development for the Nurse Educator

Three semester hours
The focus of this course is curriculum development for the nurse educator in higher education, patient education or staff development. Emphasis is placed on the historical background of higher education, philosophical foundations of cur­riculum, curriculum development, and curriculum designs/models. Emphasis is placed on regulation, accreditation, and program accountability.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801 and NS 806.

NS 823 Evaluation Strategies for the Nurse Educator

Three semester hours
This course focuses on the process and current issues related to evaluation in nursing education. Evaluation models and concepts related to the measurement of program outcomes and levels, along with course and classroom competen­cies are explored. Additionally, the theories of testing and measurement and a variety of evaluation and assessment instruments are reviewed or developed. Legal and ethical issues related to student admission, progression, and evalua­tion in nursing programs are discussed.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 806 and preferably NS 822.

NS 826 Pharmacology, Pathophysiology and Health Assessment Overview for Nurse Educators

Three semester hours
This course will provide the application of comprehensive health assessment techniques, pathophysiological changes and pharmacological needs of clients across the lifespan using a case study approach. Application of evidence-based studies related to safe, client-centered care will be explored. Application of teaching strategies to concepts presented will be discussed.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 806 and preferably NS 822 and NS 823.

NS 827 Teaching and Learning Strategies for the Nurse Educator

Three semester hours
This course focuses on the development and implementation of teaching-learning strategies that engage students in the classroom, clinical and skills lab. The theoretical foundations of teaching and learning, methods for instructional planning, sequencing and organizing instruction, and utilization of evolving technological strategies are emphasized. Evidence-based teaching strategies for educators are examined that promote student engagement to provide safe, client-centered care.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 806 and preferably NS 822 and NS 823.

NS 828 Primary Care of the Geriatric Client

Two semester hours
This course provides the student with a framework for geriatric primary care nursing practice. It presents the dynamics of aging and its effects on older adults and their health.  Underlying mechanisms of major chronic conditions affecting older adults will be presented.  Clinical problems such as incontinence, functioning capacity, safety, nutrition, cognition, skin integrity and iatrogenic illness and their effect on ADLs will be explored. Advanced planning for end of life issues will be discussed. Current practices, strategies and evidence-based findings will support facilitation of interdisciplinary health care management of the geriatric client.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 8023, NS 804 and NS 830.
Clinical hours: zero.

NS 830 Advanced Physical Assessment

Three semester hours
This course emphasizes competencies in history taking and performing comprehensive health assessments of individuals and families of all ages, and the inter­pretation of findings. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in this process will be woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 803 and NS 804. NS 838 (Advanced Pathophysiology) should be taken prior to NS 830 or concurrently.
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 50.

NS 832 Primary Health Care I

Three semester hours
This course examines management of common health problems for adults in primary care. A conceptual framework for the primary care nurse practitioner’s clinical practice is explored. The course addresses the concepts of primary care health promotion and maintenance, illness prevention, differentiation of clinical patterns, and clinical decision-making. Planning and evaluating care are learned relative to dermatologic, hematologic, respiratory, eye, ear, nose, throat, head and neck, cancer and family issues in chronic illness. Refinement of diagnostic reasoning strategies will be the focus. Principles of teaching/learning, family assessment, cost analysis, and cultural beliefs are integrated in the development of evidence-­based practice plans of care. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in evidence-based practice will be woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS 803, NS 804, NS 830 and NS 838. NS 836 (Pharmacology for Practitioners) should be taken prior to NS 832 or concurrently.
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 120.

NS 834 Advanced Nutrition

Three semester hours
This course emphasizes the essential components of nutrition including cultural aspects to prevent disease and promote and restore the health of individuals and families. Therapeutic diets will be included.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799. Recommended concurrent enrollment in NS 840.

NS 836 Pharmacology for Practitioners

Three semester hours
Emphasis is placed on reviewing basic pharmacological concepts and having students understand how and why various classes of drugs exert their thera­peutic effects. This course will build upon information learned during undergrad­uate nursing pharmacology courses and from on-the-job experience. Students will learn where, why, and how various classes of drugs exert their therapeutic effects (pharmacodynamics). Pharmacokinetic concepts (i.e., the actions of the body on a drug) will also be reviewed. Through the integration of pharmacoki­netics and pharmacodynamics, students will gain an understanding of the predictable nature of the therapeutic actions and many of the side effects and contraindications of drugs.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799 and NS 838. This course should be taken prior to 832 or concurrently.

NS 838 Advanced Pathophysiology

Three semester hours
Pathophysiology is the study of how cells, tissues, organs and organ systems respond to disease. This course is designed to provide the student with a comprehensive foundation of the phenomena that produce alterations in human physiologic function across the lifespan. The course examines general principles of pathology such as inflammation, wound healing, genetic diseases and oncology. The course explores the mechanisms of how disease affects function, and how systems respond to each disease and compensate for disease.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799. This course should be taken prior to NS 830 or concurrently.

NS 840 Primary Care of Children and Adolescents

Three semester hours
This course examines management of common physical and psychological health problems in children and adolescents. Refinement of diagnostic reasoning strategies will be the focus. Principles of teaching/learning, family assessment, cost analysis, and cultural beliefs are integrated in the development of evidence-based practice plans of care. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in evidence-based practice will be woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 830, NS 832, NS 836 and NS 838. Recommended concurrent enrollment in NS 834 or NS 812.
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 160.

NS 841 Behavioral Health Care for Practitioners

Three semester hours
This course examines family problems, health risk behaviors and common psychiatric disorders. Refinement of diagnostic reasoning and referral skills will be the focus. Principles of teaching/learning, family assessment, cost analysis, cultural beliefs, service-learning, and diversity are integrated in the development of evidenced-based practice plans of care. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in evidenced-based practice is woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 830, NS 832, NS 836 and NS 838. Recommended concurrent enrollment in NS 834.
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 160.

NS 842 Primary Care of Women

Three semester hours
This course examines management of common physical and psychological health problems of women. Refinement of diagnostic reasoning strategies will be the focus. Principles of teaching/learning, family assessment, cost analysis and cultural beliefs are integrated in the development of evidence-based practice plans of care. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in the evidence-based practice will be woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 830, NS 832, NS 834, NS 836, NS 838 and NS 812. Recommended concurrent enrollment in NS 907.
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 160.

NS 844 Primary Health Care II

Three semester hours
This course examines management of complex problems seen in adults in primary care. Musculoskeletal, neurologic, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, endocrine, renal, urologic, select infectious disease, geriatric, emergency, and trauma issues will be examined. Refine­ment of diagnostic reasoning strategies will be the focus. Principles of teaching/ learning, family assessment, cost analysis, and cultural beliefs are integrated in the development of evidence-based practice plans of care. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in evidence-based practice will be woven throughout the course.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 812, NS 830, NS 832, NS 834, NS 836, NS 838, NS 840, NS 842 and NS 847. NS 908 or NS 909 may be taken concurrently (if NS 907 has been completed).
Note: Requires preceptor and clinical site approval prior to registration.
Clinical hours: 160.

NS 847 Applied Statistics

Three semester hours
An in-depth coverage of the strategies involved in data analysis, including statisti­cal procedures and interpretation of data for research. Students will apply knowl­edge of descriptive, parametric, non-parametric, univariate, and selected multivari­ate approaches to data analysis. Emphasis will be on interpretation of statistical results and on evaluation of published research and its applicability to health care. Each student is expected to be familiar with common terminology and with use of descriptive and inferential statistical techniques, including probability, chi-square, student t analysis of variance, rank sum, Mann Whitney U, median test, sign test, and correlation.
Prerequisite: GR 798 (Unless NS 847 is a prerequisite for your program); Basic statistics course preferred.

NS 894 Nursing Education Practicum

Three semester hours
This course contains an advanced application of nursing education principles and theories within a school of nursing, patient teaching, or staff development setting. Students are expected to incorporate knowledge gained throughout the education major. The concept of caring and how it plays a part in the design, implementation, and evaluation of a program of study and the students will be emphasized.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 847, NS 812, NS 806, NS 822, NS 823, NS 826 and NS 827.
Co-requisites: NS 812, NS 907, NS 908 or NS 909.
Clinical hours: 160.

NS 898 Nursing Health Care Leadership Practicum

Three semester hours
The course offers the student the opportunity to demonstrate advanced leadership/management competencies in a selected health care organization. The course also promotes the utilization of advanced theoretical knowledge in new and existing situations within the practice setting. Learning outcomes stress creative leadership behaviors.
Prerequisites: GR 798; NS 799, NS 801, NS803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 812, NS 847, MB 803, MB 804, MB 805, MB 806, MB 807 and MB 810. NS 814, NS 907, NS 908 or NS 909 may be taken concurrently.
Note: Student must initiate arrangements for practicum with the faculty prior to registration (135 hours of practice during the semester).

NS 899 Independent Study

One to six semester hours
The course includes guided study in special topics under the supervision of a faculty member. Completion of an Independent Study form is required before reg­istration.
Prerequisite: Approval of a faculty, Director or Dean required before registration.

NS 910Evidence-Based Practice Research Project I

One semester hour
NS 910 is the first of three courses culminating in a scholarly, evidence-based practice journal article and poster presentation. The EBP research project allows students to investigate a question of practical importance by developing and testing an intervention, curriculum or protocol for application within a specific setting. Each student will complete a problem statement, theoretical framework and a literature review according to established requirements relevant to their area of concentration.
Prerequisites: GR 798, NS 799, NS 847, NS 801, NS 803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 812, NS 830, NS 832 and three additional credit hours of specialty courses. May be taken concurrently with NS 908. Students may take only one course of EBP at a time.  

NS 911 Evidence-Based Practice Research Project II

Two semester hour
NS 911 is the second of three courses culminating in a scholarly, evidence-based practice journal article and poster presentation. The EBP research project allows students to investigate a question of practical importance by developing and testing an intervention, curriculum or protocol for application within a specific setting. Each student will build on the material completed in NS 907 and will add the methodology, data analysis plan, IRB components and journal query letter.
Prerequisites: GR 798, NS 799, NS 847, NS 801, NS 803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 812, NS 830, NS 832 and three additional credit hours of specialty courses. May be taken concurrently with NS 907 or NS 909. Students may take only one course of EBP at a time.

NS 912 Evidence-Based Practice Research Project III

One semester hour
NS 912 is the final course in the three courses culminating in a scholarly, evidence-based practice journal article and poster presentation. The EBP research project allows students to investigate a question of practical importance by developing and testing an intervention, curriculum or protocol for application within a specific setting. Each student will build on the material completed in NS 907 and NS 908, completing the project to include data collection and analysis, findings, recommendations and conclusions. Completed journal article and poster presentation is required.
Prerequisites: GR 798, NS 799, NS 847, NS 801, NS 803, NS 804, NS 808, NS 812, NS 830, NS 832 and three additional credit hours of specialty courses. May be taken concurrently with NS 908. Students may take only one course of EBP at a time.