Practical Nursing

2021/22 | Conestoga College

Program Code: 1077
Health & Life Sciences

Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

This is a companion document to the current Conestoga College Student Guide

COVID-19 and 2021-22 Program Delivery

​In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Conestoga academic plans and decisions will continue to evolve to reflect the advice of public health authorities. ​Please consult the COVID-19 Information page for the most up-to-date information on college protocols.

Expectations regarding course delivery, participation, and assessments will be communicated by your faculty member at the start of the semester and included in the instructional plan.

Program technology requirements are posted on the program web page. Students in remote and hybrid delivery courses will require a device, webcam functionality, and reliable Internet access. 

Program Handbook Guidelines

​The purpose of this handbook is to provide students with program-specific details and other important information. The material in this handbook is accurate at the date of posting, and is applicable for the current academic year. Students will be informed of handbook changes that occur, if any, through college email. Program handbooks are updated yearly and students must check their program handbook for the current edition.


What you do out there logo

Welcome to the School of Health & Life Sciences

Conestoga’s School of Health & Life Sciences offers a range of credentials to assist you in your goal of becoming a healthcare professional. From pre-health programs, through to certificates, diplomas, graduate certificates and degrees, the School of Health & Life Sciences delivers the most up-to-date training provided by expert faculty and staff in state-of-the-art facilities. With a broad range of programs and delivery options to choose from, you can find a program that suits your needs and sets you on the path to a successful career.

Work-integrated learning is at the core of many of our programs. Whether through a field placement, clinical practicum, or co-operative education experience, you will have the opportunity to gain valuable work experience with an industry partner that will put your training into practice.

The School of Health & Life Sciences has many partnerships in industry as well as the local community and beyond.

What you learn here, counts out there – the School of Health & Life Sciences provides you with:​

​​​The opportunity to become the professional you aspire to be.
  • The opportunity to learn in specialized settings with real-life scenarios.
  • The opportunity to acquire knowledge and skills in a unique inter-professional environment.
  • The opportunity to take advantage of state-of-the-art learning facilities and study spaces.
  • The opportunity to become a "preferred graduate", sought after by your future employers.

Top 5 Expectations of You

​​​​​​1. Use MyConestoga to connect to:

  • Your Conestoga Email: (e.g. John Smith, Student Number 1234567, This is the official communication channel for everything related to your academic requirements. Communication with faculty and staff is required to happen through your Conestoga email account. Check MyConestoga regularly and respond as requested.
  • eConestoga: This is your resource for all course-based program activity and information, as well as course-based communication with the faculty.
  • Student Portal: You will find your final grade information, college tuition invoices, class schedules and absence reporting on this portal.
  • Placement Health Requirements: This service provides you with the requirements to enter into practice settings.
  • For BscN Students: CoMAC Communication Hub
    • The Hub is accessed through "My Communities" on My Conestoga.
    • The Hub provides information regarding Conestoga College and your program.
    • The Hub provides a link to Avenue To Learn: A resource for all course-based program activity and information, as well as course-based communication with the faculty.

2. Follow your academic schedule:

  • See the Orientation Checklist prior to starting your program.
  • Course Schedule: This is a timetable of all your classes for each semester.
  • The Academic Schedule: Program start and end dates, holidays and deadlines for course add/drop and withdrawal, are located on the college website. Programs with exams outside this time will be notified individually.
  • For BscN Students: Academic Year Schedule: Program start and end dates, holidays and deadlines for course add/drop and withdrawal, are located on the college website. Please cross-reference these dates with McMaster University's sessional dates. 

3. Become a health care professional :

  • Act respectfully and professionally at all times, as these behaviours are the key to your learning experiences.
  • Present in professional dress and conduct: See the Professional Conduct section for professionalism expectations for your program. Please review the Rights and Responsibilities website. ​
  • Pre-WIL Health Requirements: Pay attention to the deadlines listed on your documents. Complete the tasks as required; without these, you will not be able to progress to your work-integrated learning (WIL) and program completion will be in jeopardy. *Note: The PSW and Supportive Care program does not participate in the WIL program.
  • Social Media: Use responsibly and respectfully. See Standards of Conduct section of the Handbook.

4. Attend classes and labs to enhance your success:

  • Attendance Expectations: Attendance for class, labs and placement/WIL are in place to support your learning and experiences as a future professional. See Attendance and Student Success Strategies section in the Handbook.
  • Absence from Evaluations: Must be reported in the Student Portal before your scheduled evaluation time. See Attendance for Evaluation section in the ​Handbook.
  • Request for Accommodation for Religious Holidays: Request must be submitted to your Program Coordinator as per course schedule. See Religious Holidays sections in the Handbook.

5. Take responsibility for your academic status:

  • Student Records: For any questions concerning your student record, academic status and/or program withdrawals, please contact your Program Coordinator.
  • Fee Payments: Payment is required to attend classes. Check your Student Portal for invoices.
  • Credit Transfer/Exemptions: Conestoga supports the transferability of academic credits between programs and educational institutions through recognized transfer pathways, articulation agreements and course-to-course equivalences. Please review the Credit Transfer & PLAR website for more information.
  • Student Forms: To access forms, please go to the Student Forms page.
  • Academic Policies and Procedures: Are found under Policies and Procedures. Please review the Rights and Responsibilities website. 
  • Student Affairs Policies and Procedures: Are found on the Student Affairs page.

Top 5 Resources for You

​​​​​1. Your teaching team 

  • Contact Information: Is posted on eConestoga and in your Handbook (Relationships section).
  • Appointments: Book appointments (in-person, phone, email) to ensure resources are available.
  • Email Inquiries: Will be answered within two business days.
  • Urgent help: Program Assistants are available to help you reach a member of the teaching team (contact information in Relationships section of the Handbook).

2. Counselling

  • College Counselling: Professional counsellors can help you achieve your educational goals, and provide support related to stress management, anxiety, depression, transition issues, family issues, and other concerns. Counselling is free, voluntary and confidential.  To make an appointment, see the Counselling services website.
  • Good2Talk: A confidential 24-hour phone line for stresses, big and small (1-866-925-5454).
  • Conestoga Security: Provides safety and security services. See the Student Guide for Conestoga's Safety and Security Services and procedures.
  • Student Financial Services: Student Financial Services provides you with options to finance your post-secondary education. Students in need of emergency financial assistance, see the link for more information. 
  • CSI Food Bank: The CSI Food Bank is an emergency food relief program for Conestoga students. Please follow this link.
  • Health Services: These services include a family doctor and a nurse. Please follow this link.
  • Facility Information: See the Student Guide for information on after-hours parking, classroom and computer labs.

3. Accessibility services

  • Students with Documented Disabilities are encouraged to book an appointment with Accessibility Services to access accommodations. Disability-related documentation will be required to book an appointment. See the Accessibility Services webpage for more information.
  • Adaptive Technology Aids and Special Facilities: Adaptive Aids are arranged through Accessibility Services. Accessible washrooms are located throughout the campus. Contact the Adaptive Technology Lab for more information on adaptive technology aids. ​​

4. Student Services

  • ONE Card: This is your official identification card designed to access all on-campus services. See the eligibility on this website
  • Library Resource Centre: Located on 2nd Floor B Wing. Visit the Library Resource Centre for more information.
  • Tech Bar: Drop by the Tech Bar for one-on-one assistance. Information can be found on the Library Services website.
  • International Education Office: Visit the website or access through MyConestoga.
  • Student Engagement: Get involved and see the Student Engagement page or connect to MyConestoga for your Co-Curricular Record.
  • MyLearning: Academic services and resources, including resources for math, writing, peer tutors and resources for APA. Visit the website or access through MyConestoga.
  • Bookstore: Your location to buy books, clothing and general supplies (A-wing). At this time, all of our campus stores will be closed and our bookstore will be fully online for the Fall 2021 semester. Our service to students remains uninterrupted as we are fulfilling orders for students Monday to Friday. Shipping for physical items is free within Canada with a minimum of $10 spent. See this link for more information. 
  • Co-op and Career Advising: Your resource for Co-op placements, summer jobs or future careers. See the Co-op and Career Services site for more information.
  • Lockers are available with your tuition. See this link to find more information.
  • Covid-19 Information and updates are available on Conestoga's website.
  • Information Technology: Provides supports and general assistance with college-related needs such as Email, Network accounts, connectivity and wireless​ printing. See the Web IT Service Desk for more information.

Letter to Students

​​​​Dear Practical Nursing Student,

Welcome to the Practical Nursing (PN) Diploma Program. We are very proud of our Practical Nursing (PN) Program at Conestoga College, and are proud of our students and graduates. 

This handbook has been prepared to provide further information about academic standards, guidelines and processes specific to the PN Program. Reading, understanding, and following the information in this handbook is an important first step in your continued success in this program and as a health care professional. The handbook has been compiled with careful consideration for your personal and professional growth during your time at the college. If you do not understand any of the information in this handbook, please ask the Nursing Faculty or the Chair of Nursing for an explanation.

Use the index in this handbook as your guide and the contents as your continuous reference as you proceed through the program.  The PN Faculty will refer to the handbook often, but the responsibility for knowing the program standards and requirements is ultimately yours. There are additional campus guidelines for students who are located in the Living Classroom at University Gates. These will be provided to you by your program coordinator.

There will be changes in what is required of you throughout your program because of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and other infectious outbreaks that are an inherent part of nursing practice and the nursing role. Students will be updated on changes to requirements as information becomes available. A key strategy for success is submitting all required Work Integrated Learning documents by the deadlines and keeping these up to date as students missing deadlines will not be able to proceed with placements. 

In addition to the PN Program Handbook, the Conestoga College Student Guide outlines important policies and procedures for you to follow. The PN Program Handbook is a supplement to, but not a replacement for, the Conestoga College Student Guide.

We are here to help you succeed along your journey. Should you experience difficulty or need assistance in any area of your studies, please talk to your professor, Program Coordinator, the student success advisor​ or contact me to seek direction.


Heather Cross, Chair of Nursing
Practical Nursing Program Coordinators, Faculty and staff

Living Classrooms: University Gates

Welcome to the Schlegel Villages Living Classroom at University Gates

In 2006, Conestoga College and Schlegel Villages developed a Living Classroom program in Long-Term Care (LTC). This innovative and collaborative program consists of classroom and clinical teaching for Practical Nursing (PN) and Personal Support Worker (PSW) students, all in a real LTC and Retirement Home environment.

By participating in the Living Classroom program:

You have all the benefits of Conestoga College's PSW and PN curriculum and credentials, and

You have the additional benefits of learning at the Schlegel Villages University Gates.

The Living Classroom program embraces intentional interactions among you (students), the LTC and retirement living team, residents, and families. The program provides you with formal and active learning experiences in LTC and retirement living environments. In addition to teaching and providing support for you as a student, Conestoga College PN Program team members in the Living Classroom work together with the Schlegel Village team to integrate your learning with the activities in the facility and create opportunities for your involvement. Once COVID precautions allow, you are encouraged to take advantage of being in the Village by spending time with the residents and their families, when given permission and safe to do so. The LTC and Retirement Village also facilitates volunteering opportunities for you to assist residents and families. Furthermore, Schlegel Village teams receive special training on how to mentor and support you when you are in the Village.

The outcomes of the integration between learning and caregiving are mutually beneficial:

  • as a student, you gain more comfort and confidence in working with residents and families;
  • the team actively participates in your training;
  • residents are provided with care as well as social interaction;
  • you feel respected and valued as a member of the team;
  • the team and residents also feel valued as they actively assist you with the learning and training process by sharing their own skills and experiences.
  • you gain valuable experience which will be helpful for you in your future employment as an RPN

Schlegel Village of University Gates Welcome

Dear Conestoga College Student, 

On behalf of the Team of The Village at University Gates, we would like to extend a warm welcome to you.  Our Village is a place where Residents, Family Members, Team Members, Students, Researchers, and our Community Partners are all valued. 

In the Village Neighbourhoods, we can all have the opportunity to learn from each other and grow together.  We trust you will enjoy your time learning in this unique living classroom environment. 
We wish you all the best as you begin this very rewarding career as a caregiver.

Warmest Regards,

Chris-Anne Preston
General Manager    

Program Overview

​Program Descriptions

Doon Program Description:

Practical Nursing is a career-focused program where the student will gain the knowledge, skills and experience required to become a member of the nursing profession and healthcare team.

The foundational knowledge for practical nursing is based on scientific theory from nursing, the physical and psychosocial sciences and humanities. Person-centred, population-focused care is learned in context through real-life experiences and career-related placements. Senior's care is given special attention to meet the demands of an aging population. 

Living Classroom Program Description:

Conestoga's Practical Nursing Program offers an integrated plan of learning in which the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values critical to your goal of becoming a Practical Nurse are presented in a logical sequence that builds on itself and provides the opportunity to integrate increasing knowledge with opportunities to apply theory to practice in more complex ways, with a specific focus on gerontological nursing.

Program Philosophy

The Program Philosophy is about caring in context. The organizing themes of Nursing, Professionalism & Inter-professional Practice, Caring & Relational Practices and corresponding capabilities will provide graduates with the competencies necessary to perform in their expanding role as Registered Practical Nurses.


The practice of nursing is the promotion of health and the assessment of, the provision of, care for, and the treatment of, health conditions by supportive, preventive, therapeutic, palliative and rehabilitative means in order to attain or maintain optimal function (Nursing Act, 1991).

The foundational knowledge for practical nursing is based on scientific theory from nursing, the physical and psychosocial sciences and humanities. Practical nurses integrate multiple ways of knowing in the provision of care including; aesthetics, empirics, ethics, personal and socio-political.

Health is a holistic experience determined by the complex interaction of psychosocial, economic and environmental factors and the individual. Health care and promotion are facilitated by qualified, professional care providers in relationships that promote trust and empowerment. People are individuals, families, groups and communities from a variety of backgrounds and diverse life experiences.

Practical Nurses are health care professionals. They combine nursing skills, knowledge and judgment and are experts of nursing care at the bedside​. Practical Nurses work anywhere that health care is provided. 

Professionalism and Inter-professional Practice

Practical nursing is a professional practice discipline. As responsible and accountable professionals, practical nurses make use of self-reflection to ensure their practice and conduct meets legislative requirements and the standards of the profession. Care decisions are made within a legal, moral and ethical framework established by the regulating bodies and associations.

Practical nurses work in collaboration and partnership with clients, families and other members of the health care team. As vital, contributing members of the health care team, practical nurses are prepared to assume many different roles including leadership. Continuous quality improvement is a natural outcome of team reflection and collaboration with the aim of improving health outcomes. Practical nurses influence the evolution of health care by being politically astute, knowledgeable of the health care environment, willing to manage change and drive efforts for social action.

Caring and Relational Practices

Caring is central to the practice of nursing (Watson, 1979).  A caring relationship is one that recognizes the needs of the client and contributes to their well-being first and foremost. The relationship recognizes that clients are the experts in the best position to make decisions about their lives when they are active, informed participants in the care process. Communication is practiced within caring relationships that demonstrate respect for individual diversity and autonomy.

Relational practice encompasses the therapeutic nurse-client relationship and relationships among health care providers. It is guided by the conscious utilization of relational skills including listening, questioning, empathy, mutuality, reciprocity, self-observation, reflection and a sensitivity to emotional contexts (Ministry of Colleges and Universities).

Practical nurses are information managers and as such information and computer technologies are utilized as essential components of safe and effective health care.

Philosophy of Education

The practical nursing program uses a learner-centered approach that encourages the personal and professional development of practical nursing students. Learning how to learn in a life-long process of continued growth is promoted.

Transformative nursing education is achieved by creating environments and relationships where learning can be created and mastered. Learning in context provides the opportunity to gain knowledge and insight from real-life situations in communities of practice.

​Program Summary Map 2021-2022

Program Map describes your learning with three important components:

  1. All courses focus on you demonstrating development towards the program outcomes and capabilities through your program.
  2. There are themes for your learning that will inform you of the courses you will take to develop program capabilities.
  3. Each semester has a theme that creates milestones for your learning within a semester and your transition from one semester to the next and ultimately to your readiness to graduate.

Semester 1
Introduction to
Professional Practice
Semester 2
Development of
Professional Practice
Semester 3
Advancement of
Professional Practice
Semester 4
Emerging Professional
Practical Nurse
Human Physiology

Introduction to
& Pharmacology 2
& Pharmacology 3


Nursing 1

Nursing Concepts 1:

Adult Development
& Aging
Nursing 2

Concepts 2

Human Development
& Health Promotion
Professional Nursing 3:
Foundations for

Nursing Concepts 3:
Acute Care

Nursing Concepts
for Families
Professional Nursing 4:

Advanced Gerontology

Information and

Nursing Lab
& Practice 1

Safety in the
Nursing Lab 2

Campus Clinical 2

Field Placement 1
(Practical Nursing)
Nursing Lab 3

Gentle Persuasive Approach

Campus Clinical 3

Field Placement 3
(Practical Nursing)
Campus Clinical:

Field Placement 3
(Practical Nursing)
​General Knowledge
for Personal

College Reading
& Writing Skills

Conestoga 101


Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the Practical Nursing Program, our graduates will:

  1. Achieve the Entry to Practice Competencies of the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) and the Program Standards of the Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU).
  2. Communicate with clients, families and communities to enhance person-centred care.
  3. Manage information within a professional, legal, and ethical framework using technology appropriately.
  4. Demonstrate collaborative practice and leadership supportive of care delivery and team effectiveness.
  5. Conduct equitable and just relationships with clients and members of the health care team.
  6. Assess clients across the life span, in a systematic and holistic manner.
  7. Plan safe and competent nursing care, based upon a thorough analysis of available data and evidence-informed practice guidelines.
  8. Select and perform nursing interventions using clinical judgment, in collaboration with the client and, where appropriate, the health care team that promotes health and well-being, prevents disease and injury, maintains and/or restores health, promotes rehabilitation, and/or provides palliation.
  9. Evaluate the outcomes resulting from all interventions in the nurse-client interaction and modify the plan of care as required.
  10. Promote a healthy and safe work environment in a variety of health care settings.
  11. Practice in a self-regulated, professional and ethical manner, complying with relevant legislation and with the standards of both the regulatory body and the practice setting to provide safe and competent client care.

​Program Design

You can find your​ program design on the student Portal by following the steps below:

  1. Log in to Student Portal
  2. Click on 'My Courses' tab
  3. Select 'View Progress Report' button

Courses are listed by level/semester. Students can also view courses for the most current program design for this academic year on the School of Health & Life Sciences website. To find these courses, students need to scroll to the 'Program Courses' section.

​​Pathways and Further Post-Secondary Education Opportunities

Conestoga pathways enable students to build on their academic achievements in order to earn a degree or additional credentials. Pathways are formed through agreements between the Conestoga program and partner institutions. View the transfer agreement opportunities.

There are several different opportunities available to students who wish to continue studying at Conestoga. Whether you wish to transfer to another program or apply to a new program after graduation, Conestoga has established pathways to help you meet your goals. Conestoga Pathways information is available on Conestoga's website.

​Employment Opportunities

Graduates are prepared to function as members of an interprofessional team in accordance with the Standards of Nursing Practice published by the College of Nurses of Ontario. Students who successfully complete the program are eligible to write the National Registration examination for registration by the College of Nurses of Ontario as a Registered Practical Nurse. Graduates find employment in long term care facilities, acute and chronic care hospitals, residential homes for the older adult, and other community healthcare settings.

On average, 95% of graduates from​ 2019-2020 found employment within 6 months of graduation. For more details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities, see the Government of Canada website.​


​​Communication and Contact Information

The Program Faculty members are here to support you in acquiring an excellent education, a broad skillset, and the confidence to move out into the workforce upon completion of the program. Ultimately, your success in this program rests on you; however, your faculty are committed to doing their best in supporting you throughout your studies.

To ensure your success in the program, it is important you become familiar with those who are here to support and help you. If you have any day-to-day questions about your program, courses or schoolwork, please contact your Faculty, Program Coordinator, or Chair.

Contacting Program Faculty members
When contacting program staff (via email or by phone) outside of class time, your message should include the following information:
  • First and last name, student ID #
  • Course and semester or level
  • Brief description of the reason for contact
  • Telephone number where you can be reached
Student Email

All students are supplied with a Conestoga e-mail address. Communications from program team members will be via your Conestoga e-mail address or posted on Conestoga's online Learning Management System – eConestoga. Official Conestoga communication via e-mail will use only your Conestoga e-mail address. Use only your Conestoga e-mail address when communicating with program team members. Students are expected to check their Conestoga e-mail regularly. You can forward emails from here to a personal email address for notification, but you must respond using your Conestoga email address.

If you are having problems accessing your Conestoga e-mail contact the Information Technology (IT) department at 519-748-5220 ext. 3444 as soon as possible. Students are accountable for ensuring a functioning e-mail account.

Program Faculty Member Availability
Students are encouraged to connect with individual Program Faculty members to discuss course work, assignments, or other matters related to their success at Conestoga. At the beginning of your program, a faculty member will explain how you can contact them outside of class time. 

Procedures for Meeting with Program Faculty Members

To schedule a meeting with Program Faculty members please contact the individual by email. Meetings may be held virtually or by telephone.

​​Contact Information

Name Extension Email
Karen Singleton, Coordinator Year 1
Doon Campus
Ext. 3963
​​Heidi Holmes, Coordinator
Unive​rsity Gates 519-904-0661
​Ext. 3963
​Hellen Jarman, Coordinator, Year 2 Semester 3
​Amber Anderson-Lunn, Coordinator, Year 2 Semester 4​

Andrea White
Ext. 3977
Anne Marie RockExt. 2775
Helene St. Pierre
Jennifer SebbenExt.
Pat Chornaby
Rosanne BaumanExt.
Emily ParkinsonExt.
Practice Application Specialists​ ​
Name Extension Email
Coby VanderkooyExt. 3302
Erin IoannouExt. 3306
Jacqueline ReinhardtExt. 3700
Jennifer RichardsonExt. 3464
Matt DravesExt. 2367
Megan RenaudExt. 2950
Sue Struth
Ext. 2190
Vanessa Cruz
Luminita SilvaExt. 2698
​Marilyn Arsenault,
University Gates 519-904-0661
​Ext. 6001
Administration​ ​
Name Extension Email
Heather Cross, Chair
Nursing Programs
Ext. 3434
Krisden Galloway,
Program Assistant
Ext. 3437

Faculty Availability

Procedure to enter into Faculty & Staff Work Spaces

Doon Campus: Telephones for internal use are located outside the entry to Faculty/staff workspaces on 4B.  Beside the phone is a Faculty directory with extension numbers and office location.

If you have an appointment with a Faculty/staff member, call to confirm that you have arrived & do not enter until you have confirmation that the Faculty/staff member is at their pod.  If you do not have an appointment, call the person you wish to meet with to confirm that they are present and can see you; if you do not reach them, leave a message. In the interest of respecting the work environment for everyone in this area, do not wander into Faculty/staff workspaces looking for them.

As program team members have diverse schedules and we will be controlling student traffic flow on campus while COVID-19 is present in our province, please make an appointment before coming to see your program team member.​

​​Student Engagement

Student Concern or Issues

If any concerns or issues arise during your learning experience, our main goal is to collaborate with students, faculty and staff to resolve situations or concerns quickly and improve and optimize our processes.

Problem-solving strategy:

1. When a situation of concern arises, inform those involved in a timely manner.

2. Please see the Student Rights and Responsibilities​ website for further details on informal and formal procedures for the resolution of concerns and issues.

3. Issues and concerns related to a placement site, or its employees should first be brought to the attention of the Conestoga Field Placement Supervisor or Program Coordinator, subject to the additional procedures outlined in the sections on "Professionalism" and "Concerns Regarding Safety or Care/Service for Clients during a Field Placement" of your handbook. 

Student Representation

Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI) and Conestoga College agree that a student has the right to invite a member of CSI to a student/faculty meeting, provided that 24 hours advance notice is given to faculty. This advance notice will ensure that all parties will have an opportunity to adequately prepare for the meeting.

PAC (Program Advisory Committee)

Each program at Conestoga has a Program Advisory Committee (PAC), which consists of industry and academic representatives, as well as current students. The PAC meets several times a year to discuss the future priorities of that industry and any adjustments that can be made to keep the college program.

At the beginning of each academic year, the Program Coordinator will invite students to volunteer on the PAC. Student attendees are important members of the PAC and are expected to be present at the meetings, and prepare and submit a report based on guidelines provided by the Program Coordinator.

Students who participate in PACs will receive credit on their Co-Curricular Record (CCR). Your CCR is an official document, complementary to your academic transcript, which recognizes and records learning that you have achieved through approved co-curricular experiences at Conestoga College.

​​Student Feedback

​Student feedback is an essential component of our continuous improvement process. Our opportunities for student feedback include:

Key Performance Indicators

All college programs in the province are evaluated using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU). This Student Experience Survey is conducted each academic year in select classes. Strategic goals to improve the programs are developed from these results. This data and other data specific to the campus and the program/school are collected so that Conestoga College can continually improve quality.

Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT)

The Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT) allows direct feedback from students on teaching for a particular course. Completion of the SAT forms give teachers and academic managers valuable information to use for the improvement of teaching at Conestoga.

The SAT process has two components: the Early Course Check-in and Full-SAT. The Early Course Check-in is 5 questions, occurs during week 5 of classes and provides early feedback to faculty about the student experience within their classroom. The Full-SAT is 44 questions and occurs late in the semester; a summary of the results goes to the faculty menber and their academic manager. Typically about one-quarter of the faculty is appraised per term. All full-time faculty have a SAT review at least once every two years. Part-time faculty may be reviewed more frequently. Continuing Education students may have an opportunity to complete a SAT form during their Continuing Education course.

​​Class Cancellations

Class cancellations due to faculty absence

Class cancellations due to Faculty absences will be posted on the Student Portal or​ B.S.c.N​. students on Avenue to Learn.

Faculty may also post any absences on eConestoga

Class cancellations due to inclement weather

College closure due to inclement weather will be announced on local radio stations and posted on the College's website. A message will be recorded on the campus phone line after office hours.

Personal notifications of class cancellations

Students have the option of receiving special emails or SMS text messages notifying them of class cancellations due to Faculty absences. To receive these notifications, students must subscribe to this service. See the Student Portal and select notifications. 

Standards of Conduct and Professional Practice

​​Code of Behaviour

Students are expected to behave in accordance with college policies in regard to behaviour. These policies include:

  • Academic Regulations and Policies
  • Human Rights
  • Students' Rights and Responsibilities
These are available in the Conestoga College Student Guide as well as on the Website. Each Practical Nursing student "is responsible for ensuring that her or his practice and conduct meet legislative requirements and the standards of the Practical Nursing profession" - College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) Professional Standards.

Each Student:
  • Is accountable and responsible for own actions;
  • Ensures practice is consistent with current legislation and the standards of practice as defined by the College of Nurses of Ontario;
  • Has the knowledge, skill and judgment for entry to practice.
Students are expected to work in partnership with their Faculty Clinical Team members to:
  • Provide learning opportunities for the practical nursing student to enable them to acquire the knowledge, skills, and clinical experience needed to practice;
  • Evaluate the practical nursing student's ability to meet the required learning outcomes for each course experience.

College of Nurses of Ontario Standards

Conestoga College has been given the mandate to prepare Practical Nurses. The Province of Ontario expects the college to graduate Practical Nurses who meet the standards that have been established for the profession. The College of Nurses Standards for Practice include continued competency, professional service to the public, current and relevant knowledge, application of this knowledge, professional behaviour, responsibility/accountability, and upholding ethical standards. The College of Nurses Ethical Standards value client well-being, client choice, privacy and confidentiality, respect for life, maintaining commitments, truthfulness, and fairness.

Practical Nurses function in an independent and interdependent environment. There is an implicit trust by the client that the Practical Nurse is an ethical, moral and competent person. 

The Standards of Practice from the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) the Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA), and other program legislation governing professional behaviour focuses on the protection of the public.

As students preparing to become health care professionals, it is imperative that your behaviour and attitudes reflect the professional, ethical standards that are embraced by your chosen profession. We believe that a value system incorporating high moral and ethical integrity is of vital importance, and regard the absence of such values as critical and dangerous to practice. We believe integrity to be a quality that includes sound moral principles, sincerity, honesty, and self-respect.

The College of Nurses of Ontario Guidelines for Professional Behaviour state:

Nurses have a duty to participate in and promote the growth of the profession, and to conduct themselves in a manner which is becoming to the profession.

Nurses need to care for one another and respect their colleagues. They need to work collaboratively with other nurses, trust in the expertise of one another, and refer to others when they do not have the necessary knowledge and expertise themselves.

A nurse needs to:

  • Contribute to positive team functioning and support colleagues;
  • Conduct oneself in a way that promotes respect for the profession;
  • Cooperate with regulatory functions.

If a student's behaviour/conduct interferes with the learning process or in any way jeopardizes the safe environment of the classroom or clinical setting, the student will be required to leave the class or clinical session.

Inappropriate Behaviour or unsafe practices may require the removal of the student from the course prior to the end of the course. Consequently, the student will receive a failing grade for the course.

Program Standards for Professionalism in Practical Nursing

Uniforms and Grooming Guidelines

As a Practical Nursing student in the clinical setting, your clients and their families see you as a member of the health care team.  Your appearance can inspire confidence in your ability to care for them.  Neatness, cleanliness, conservative makeup, jewelry, and safety considerations all help to create a look of competence, commitment and professionalism.  It is your responsibility to maintain this appearance.  If you choose not to do this, your Professor/Clinical Team Member may ask you to leave the clinical area. 

Specific hospital/agency policies may vary from Conestoga policy.  Student uniforms must conform to the uniform policy of the institution in which students are placed.

All Students In The Practical Nursing Program Will Need:

  • Conestoga College Practical Nursing uniforms;
  • One (1) Conestoga College name tag, available from the Bookstore;
  • One clear two-way pocket badge holder.

Uniform Regulations

  • Full, clean, wrinkle free uniform must be worn in clinical areas and college simulation labs.
  • Bottom of the pant hemline must be sewn above the sole of the shoe.
  • Warm-up jackets or sweaters that coordinate with the uniform are acceptable, but must not be worn during direct care.
  • Slips should be worn with skirts.
  • Undergarments must be worn, choice and style should not create a major contrast between body colour and uniform colour.
  • Head coverings, if pre-approved, must be neutral and appropriate to ensure the safety of the student and patient.
  • If ¾ length shirts or t-shirts are worn under the designated Practical Nursing uniform they must be black or grey.
  • No hats to be worn.
  • Religious and cultural attire will be considered on an individual basis.
  • Once a uniform is worn for client care, it cannot be worn in any public place until washed; If you are not going home directly after clinical, you need to have a change of clothing with you.


Uniform shoes must be supportive, clean, black or white in colour, non-mesh, and slip-resistant with closed toes and heels. The shoes worn with the uniform are not to be worn outside of the agency. Clogs (wooden or other), and crocs are not acceptable footwear.


Conestoga identification must be worn and visible at all times in all clinical settings. Institutional Photo ID may also be required, at the discretion of the institution.


Jewelry can be a source of bacteria and injury to students and clients.  For these reasons the following restrictions related to jewelry are necessary:

  • NO rings, other than a plain wedding band.
  • NO chains - necklaces or bracelets.
  • NO  facial or oral jewelry.
  • Watches may be worn on the wrist or uniform except when giving direct care.
  • One conservative stud may be worn in each ear lobe. Dangling earrings or stretchers are not acceptable. Flesh-coloured spacers are acceptable.


When providing patient nursing care it is important that hair not fall forward potentially contaminating clean/sterile areas.  For this reason, hair should be neat, clean and kept out of the eyes.  If hair is long, it should be tied back and secured with small, plain clips. Long ponytails should be secured upon the head, and not allowed to dangle onto patient field of care. Hair colour must be of a natural shade (i.e. no green, blue, pink, etc.). Students must be clean-shaven or have neatly trimmed beards and/or mustaches to facilitate respirator fit; cultural and religious practices will be taken into consideration on an individual basis.

Personal Hygiene

Students are expected to meet hygiene requirements during class, lab and placement hours.

  • Maintain personal hygiene and cleanliness.
  • No heavily scented perfumes, colognes, gels, and lotions.  These can cause allergic reactions, migraines and respiratory difficulty for those participating in class, lab and placements.


  • Nails should be kept short, not past the fingertip, and clean.
  • No nail polish, nail jewelry, acrylic or artificial nails are permitted.


Smoking in the hospital setting is against the law and may be subject to fine. Students are expected agency policy.

Chewing Gum

Chewing gum is not allowed in clinical, lab or community settings.

Food and Beverages

Food and Beverages in the hospital setting are allowed in designated areas only (cafeteria, staff lounge areas).


Cellphones and/or smartphones for personal use are not permitted in the clinical setting/lab and community agencies.

Dress Code for Agencies not requiring Uniforms

  • Conestoga College name tag must be worn at all times.
  • Conestoga identification must be worn and visible at all times in all clinical settings. Identification must include first and last name and designation. Institutional Photo ID may also be required, at the discretion of the institution.
  • Wear comfortable low-heeled shoes with closed toes and heels.
  • Street clothing should be professional. The following are not appropriate for these settings: jeans, tights and leggings, sweat​pants, tracksuits, warm-up suits, ankle socks with skirts, revealing necklines or short skirts.

Transportation of Uniform to and from Clinical Settings

  • It is important that your uniform be clean when arriving on the unit and that a soiled uniform (that is, one that has been worn for client care) not be worn in a public place.  Uniform shoes are NOT to be worn outside of the agency.
  • It is the responsibility of the student to find out from each new Professor /Clinical Team Member the particular agency policy regarding wearing the uniform to and from the agency setting.
  • In hospitals that allow uniforms to be worn to and from work, the student must ensure that the uniform is covered when outside of the hospital (e.g. with a knee-length coat) and that the student is traveling directly between the hospital and home.
  • In hospitals that require the student to change at the hospital, the students will wear street clothes to the hospital and when returning home.  The uniform is to be kept in a protective covering during transit.

Requests for accommodations of this regulation (e.g. for religious or disability reasons) will be considered within the framework of the Conestoga College Policy for Human Rights.

Not Following Uniform and Dress Policy

Faculty/staff reserve the right to ask students who do not conform to the uniform policy, are inappropriately attired, unkempt, or malodourous, to leave the clinical, community, or lab setting.

Safety and Security at the Village of University Gates

In The Event Of a Fire Alarm/Emergency

  • Conestoga Faculty and students will stop and listen to the announcement
  • If the emergency is in the long-term care side of the building (will be in the announcement) remain in the classrooms and continue to listen for any further instructions
  • If you feel more comfortable leaving the building you must exit via the Fire Exit door and designated fire route as mentioned below
  • If the emergency is in the RIA building: 
    • The page will tell you where the emergency is
    • You will then exit by the "Fire Exit" door
    • There are emergency exit arrows on the walls to direct you to the "Fire Exit" door and a "Fire Exit" sign is at the Fire Exit door.


  • A parking pass needs to be obtained
  • All students are to park in designated areas only. These areas will be identified during the first week of the program
  • Under no circumstance are students to park in other parking areas other than designated areas. These areas are for residents and family and many are owned and paid for by the residents.


All Conestoga College students must wear their college picture identification badge while in The Village of University Gates. Students must also have an available copy of their clear health passport and their VSS. 

​​​​​​Academic Offences and Plagiarism

Academic honesty is expected and required of all Conestoga students. It is critical that you familiarize yourself with the Academic Offences Policy found on the Policies and Procedures​ page. The Academic Offences Policy provides a detailed description of the following:

  • Scope of academic integrity,
  • What academic integrity means,
  • What types of behaviours constitute a breach of academic integrity, and
  • The penalties associated with breaching academic integrity.

Please speak with a faculty member or your Program Coordinator if you have any further questions after reviewing the policy. Please note that maintaining academic integrity is very essential and that it is your responsibility to know the Academic Offences Policy.

Below are a few examples to help you avoid breaching academic integrity.

  • Make sure you recognize information that requires referencing.
  • Whenever you refer to material from another source, whether book, journal article, video, newspaper or electronic publications, you must acknowledge your source using proper citations and references. See the Student Success Services website​ for assistance with formatting and referencing.
  • If you work collaboratively with others on an assignment, make sure you do not copy words or ideas from others intentionally or by accident.
  • Read the Academic Offences Policy and that you fully understand it. The policy describes additional behaviours that represent a breach of academic integrity.
  • If you require more information, see the Academic Integrity website

​​Copyright – What you need to know

Photocopying and scanning at Conestoga College are governed by the Copyright Act, an agreement with Access Copyright, and the Association of Canadian Community Colleges' Fair Dealing Policy.

Under the terms of Conestoga's Access Copyright, you can photocopy or scan the following:

  • Up to 10% of most published works.
  • One chapter that is greater than 10%, but no more than 20% of the book.
  • One article, short story, play, poem or essay from a book, magazine or journal issue containing other works.
  • One newspaper article or page.
  • One entry from an encyclopedia, dictionary, annotated bibliography or similar reference work.
  • One drawing, sculpture, painting, print, architectural work of art or work of artistic craftsmanship from a larger volume containing other works.

Cumulative Copying

Cumulative copying consists of copy more than 10% over time. This is not allowed. The copy limits apply to an entire academic year, so once you reach the limit for an item, you can not copy from this source anymore until the next academic year.

You cannot copy or scan the following:

  • Workbooks or study guides that are intended for one-time use.
  • Instruction manuals.
  • Sheet music and original artistic works including photographs or prints.
  • Advertisements.
  • Business cases.
  • Full textbooks.
  • Any of the items on the Access Copyright Exclusions list.

You can find this information and more on the Copyright for Students web page.

​​​​Safe Practice

Safe practice is a hallmark of professional practice. It is an expectation of everyone who aims to become a healthcare professional.

There are several policies and procedures associated with practical ​training that has been developed to ensure your safety and the safety (physical and emotional) of those around you. These policies will be reviewed during your program.

The following basic procedures are outlined for your attention:

  1. Your safety begins with the use of professional attire and footwear and with your attention to the health and safety expectations that may be identified throughout the college.   
  2. Please help us create a safe and pleasant environment by wiping up spills, ensuring laptop cords do not snake across walking areas, and reporting equipment or facility problems when you notice these.  
  3. Specific dress codes, personal protective equipment and specific codes of behavioural conduct may apply to certain programs; failure to follow these may result in your inability to participate in a lab, class or experiential learning activity.   
  4. Safe work practices are to be followed during all training. Follow the direction of your instructors. If you have a placement, your instructor will ensure that you know safe practices and safety precautions and procedures. This includes problem-solving by the instructor and Program Coordinator with the college's Occupational Health & Safety Department as required.  
  5. All safety-related accidents, incidents, and near misses must be reported to the Instructor-in-Charge immediately. ​​

​​Student Protection Acknowledgement

A Student Protection Acknowledgement confirmation pop-up will appear when a student logs into the Student Portal on a yearly basis. This will direct students to policies and procedures relevant to their academic responsibilities. All Conestoga College wide academic policies and procedures are listed on the college website under "About Conestoga", "Policies and Procedures". 

Students are advised to review and comply with all policies and procedures, including the following:         
  • Academic Dispute and Resolution Policy & Procedure
  • Academic Offences Policy & Procedure ​
  • Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy & Procedure
  • Convocation Procedure
  • Co-operative Education Policy
  • Discontinuance Procedure
  • Evaluation of Student Learning Policy & Procedure
  • Grading Procedure
  • Program and Course Withdrawal and Refund Procedure/International Student Withdrawal and Refund Procedure
  • Readmission Procedure
  • Religious Holiday Policy & Procedure
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy & Procedure
  • Student Feedback Policy
  • Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure

Students must follow all of the policies and procedures for Conestoga College and it is expected that faculty will accept, fulfil and enforce these standards.​​ 

Conestoga 101

The Student Engagement Department is here to help you transition to the Conestoga College experience, connect with your community, and build your skills. 

Start your college experience by completing Conestoga 101 (CON0101) on eConestoga, a mandatory course for all new full-time students that will take you approximately one hour to complete. CON0101 provides an overview of the supports, services, and opportunities available to you throughout your time at Conestoga. Make sure you complete it early on in the term, as it contains valuable information that will help you transition to Conestoga.

​​​Professional Conduct - Use of technology

To support a respectful learning environment both in the classroom and in field placements, the use of technology for social networking can only occur during break times, before and after class, and during formal break time in field placement.

Social Media Policy

  • As a student and future professional, it is essential to maintain your professional boundaries in all communication, including social media.

According to the Ontario College of Teachers (2011), "Electronic messages are not anonymous. They can be tracked, misdirected, manipulated and live forever on the internet." The same organization also indicates "Online identities and actions are visible to the public and can result in serious repercussions or embarrassment.

  • Assume the information you post or send can be accessed or altered by anyone.
  • Consider whether any posting may reflect poorly on you, your school, or your profession.
  • Avoid online criticism of other students, colleagues, faculty or field placements.
  • Avoid impulsive, inappropriate or heated comments.
  • Pictures should not be taken, posted to social media sites or shared without the expressed permission of all individuals involved.
  • Make sure your on-line name and email reflect professionalism.
  • Maintain privacy of all care and service activities when in practical work experiences.
  • Do not take or post any pictures while on placement or involved in lab activities.
  • Maintain client-provider relationships and boundaries. The addition of a client to a 'friendship" status online is unacceptable.

Ontario College of Teachers. (2011). Professional Advisory-Use of Electronic Communication and Social Media. Retrieved May 12, 2015, from

Cell Phone Policy

Students should respect their instructors, faculty and staff by not using their cell phones for personal use during class time.

Students can not bring their cell phone or technology device(s) into a test or examination, unless required for the examination and approved by the faculty. 

In the event of an urgent need to keep your cell phone with you during a test, please speak to your faculty as soon as you enter the examination room. 

​Clinical/Lab Dress Code for all programs' students

The Clinical Lab areas of the Cowan Health Sciences Centre (CHSC) are comprised of clinical labs, the Cross Centre for the Advancement of Patient Care Simulation and the Open Access Lab. 

All lab areas are covered by the dress code policy for all programs in the School of Health & Life Sciences.  Non-compliance with this dress code will result in the person being asked to leave the lab area. (If during scheduled lab time, this may result in a missed lab). Refer to dress code policy.

Clinical Learning Centre/Open Access Lab

Practice Application Specialists (PAS) are Nurses who work in the Clinical Learning Centre.

Practice Application Specialists (PAS) act as a resource in introducing users to the lab, maintaining the lab environment/supplies, and assisting students with practicing and evaluation of skills related to client care.  The Practice Application Specialists (PAS) are also available to students requiring remedial assistance.

Accessing the Clinical Labs

1. Procedures for booking practice in Open Access Lab during scheduled hours

Booking practice time/and or materials may be done in person or by telephone (519 748 5220 ext. 3457) at the Doon campus. All materials borrowed for use outside the lab must be signed for and returned to the lab in good condition within the specified time.

2. Procedure for booking after-hours and weekend Lab practice

  • The booking must be done at least 24 hours in advance.
  • Contact the Open Access Lab to book the time.  The following information will need to be provided:

a. Day, time and duration of practice

b. Full names of all persons in attendance

  1. This allows the CHSC team to notify security appropriately
  2. You must have at least one other person (in the program) with you for this practice
  3. Persons outside the programs in the School of Health & Life Sciences will not be admitted to the Open Access Lab
  4. Appropriate lab attire must be worn while in the Open Access
  • On the day of practice, please check in with Security with your Conestoga ID.  Security will unlock the lab.
  • When you are finished practicing please contact Security to have them lock the door.
  • You will not be allowed to use the medication cart during unsupervised practice.

All students must leave the lab by 2200 hours.  The centre must not be left unattended during after-hour use.

Rules of Engagement for Simulation Experiences

There are 3 guidelines that everyone must follow:

1. Keep it real

The simulation environment is created with actors and scenarios requiring you to keep it real. You will be expected to adhere to Program standards of conduct and professional practice to model professionalism and leadership in the simulation environment at all times.

2. Respect for others and yourself

It is important to maintain a positive, respectful environment and keep actively engaged. To maintain privacy and confidentiality and out of respect for all involved; experiences and discussions related to the experiences must never be posted via social media. 

3. Constructive Reflection

This is an opportunity to improve your performance in a safe and interactive environment.  We can all learn through our actions or inactions.  Keep it constructive.

Attendance and Student Success Strategies


In view of the learning complexities of the PN Program, it is imperative that students attend all classes and clinical placement as scheduled. The program is approved by the College of Nurses of Ontario, and they require student to apply their learning, not just pass tests. Application of the required learning​ takes place in class, labs and placement. Students who are absent from class or field placement place themselves in academic jeopardy in meeting the learning objectives as stipulated by the program.

If extenuating circumstances require students to miss a class or clinical placement, please note that it is the student's responsibility to share this information with Faculty.

Students are expected to arrive on time for classroom, lab, clinical and community experiences. Repeated late arrivals may result in a Progress Note.

Attendance for In-Class and Lab Evaluations

An evaluation is defined as a test, exam, presentation or any other formal assessment that requires your presence in a class or lab. Evaluations are critical components of each course and overall success for you in your Program.

The School's approach to requirements for attendance at evaluations reflects the expectation that as emerging professionals, students must demonstrate a professional attitude and attention to evaluations, in the same manner that expectations for future work as professional will require attention to workplace procedures.

In order to support student success:

  • Evaluation and presentation dates are scheduled and communicated at the beginning of each semester.
  • Unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program or the Faculty that may require changes to the course schedule will be communicated to students.  

In support of the development of professionalism, students are required to take all evaluations at the scheduled times.

  • Students who make personal commitments that conflict with the evaluation dates or assignment deadlines do so at their own risk.
  • There will be no special arrangements made for students with personal conflicts (e.g. work, family commitments or vacation plans).
  • Academic accommodations are provided to students with documented disabilities through the Accessibility Office.

The following procedure sets out expectations and implications should you miss an evaluation:

Notification for Absence from Evaluations

  • Students are required to notify the program of absence from any evaluation prior to the start of the evaluation. If unable to notify in advance, notification should be received within 24 hours. 
  • Failure to do so will result in a mark of zero being assigned.
Notification procedure

Log into the student portal and click on the Absence tab and indicate that you will be absent from class on a day that has an Evaluation. You will receive a confirmation email that you have recorded your absence for that day. If you are unable to enter your absence in the portal, email your faculty.


  • The Absence Recording System shows you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you record your absence. (For example, if you record your absence for that day at 11.00 a.m. the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11.00 a.m. that day.) If you are then going to be present again for some later class, you will need to bring your presence to the attention of your Professor in that later class.) 
  • The earliest that you may record your absence for a particular day is after 8 p.m. on the preceding day

Follow-up after Reporting Your Absence from an Evaluation

Students are responsible for contacting the faculty for the course on the day they return to classes. Faculty will determine alternate evaluation arrangements as appropriate. 

​​​Religious Holidays

Students are permitted by Conestoga policy to be absent from class to observe a recognized religious holiday. Any student who is unable to attend classes or participate in an examination, study, or work requirement on some particular day(s) because of religious beliefs will be given the opportunity to make up the work that was missed or complete alternate work/examinations subject to timely notification.

Conestoga recognizes all religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council.

It is your responsibility to:

  • Plan ahead and be aware of the dates of all examinations and other course obligations;
  • Advise the faculty member that you will be seeking accommodation to observe a recognized religious holiday. You will also make a request in writing to your Program Coordinator within the first three weeks of the semester and prior to the date of assessment that falls on the religious holiday. Exceptions based on extenuating circumstances must be approved by the Program Chair.


​Nursing Practice and Campus Clinical Attendance

Attend​​an​ce at Nursing Practice and Campus Clinical and college laboratories is considered an evaluation opportunity. The Practical Nursing Program prepares the student for eligibility to write the College of Nurses Registration exam. To ensure students are prepared to write, standards are set within the program that must be achieved.

  1. During clinical placement, students are to remain on the agency premises.  
  2. Attendance will be carefully monitored throughout the program.   Absenteeism will jeopardize the successful completion of Clinical Practice. Students who are absent for the orientation to the agency shall not proceed in the placement and will be deemed unsatisfactory in the course.
  3. Absence verification may be required. Permission from the student's physician to return to school may be requested.

Guidelines and expenses incurred relating to nursing practice

 Students will assume responsibility for expenses incurred while assigned to affiliated agencies, such as meals, lockers, keys, parking, travel expenses and uniforms

Cancellation of clinical experiences

  1. Inclement weather.  Refer to Conestoga College Student Guide. During clinical placement, staff within the facility make the judgement as to whether the shift should be discontinued.  The staff will notify the Chair and Program Coordinator (the next day) that such a decision was made for the safety of the students.
  2. Faculty/Team Member Absence. Cancellation will be posted as per individual teacher instruction.

Clinical Practice Learning Courses

Nursing Lab Assessments

The passing grade for these courses is an overall grade of 70%.


RPNs demonstrate professional conduct, personal and professional growth and are accountable for safe, competent and ethical practice (CNO Entry to Practice Competencies, 2020). All nurses and nursing students have an obligation to protect the public by being competent.  

Competence is the ability of a nurse to integrate the professional attributes required to perform in a given role, situation or practice setting. Students are responsible for regularly practicing their skills so they are safe to provide care in practice settings and become more proficient as they progress in the program. Students may be referred back to the lab at any time should there be a need to refresh or further develop skills competencies.  

 It is recognized that nursing skills are more than technical expertise, but also include other professional attributes required to perform the role. Students are responsible for professional behaviour in lab, including how they interact with others and their efforts to use their time well to work towards competence and mastery of skills. ​

Methods of Assessment


Students can expect regular feedback from Faculty and Practice Application Specialists and peers on their skill performance. Feedback will assist the student to develop proficiency in his or her skills.

Skills Checks

During skills checks, students are asked to demonstrate technical capabilities as learned in theory.

Safety, Accuracy & Timeliness (SAT)

This evaluation places a technical skill in context and challenges students to apply theory to practice as a Practical Nurse.

Sources of assessment and/or evaluation

  • Student reflections/feedback forms
  • Evaluation of student's practice performance
  • Scheduled lab or simulation experiences
  • Peer evaluation
  • Clinical preceptors

The responsibility of the teaching/learning team in the evaluation process is to ensure ethical and legal standards are met consistently and to:

  1. Make program expectations known, clear and realistic.
  2. Assist students in developing and/or reviewing learning plan.
  3. Base assessments and judgments of nursing practice performance on accurate, significant and relevant sources of data.
  4. Inform students as soon as performance strengths/limitations are identified.
  5. Counsel students on corrective actions so that program success can be achieved.
  6. Facilitate access to appropriate program/college support services and resources.

Nursing Practice Assessments  

Satisfactory Criteria

The student demonstrates a consistent pattern of performance, which indicates knowledgeable, safe, competent, and professional nursing care for clients and families within the identified learning outcomes.

Unsatisfactory Criteria

The student does not consistently demonstrate performance that indicates knowledgeable, safe, and competent nursing care for clients and families in one or more of the stated learning outcomes.

If the student's behaviour and/or conduct interfere with the learning process or in any way jeopardize the safe environment of the clinical setting, the student will be required to leave the clinical area.

Unsafe practices may result in withdrawal of the student from the clinical setting prior to the end of the course.

Late Submissions of Practice Written Work

Circumstances that result in late submission of practice work may result in the completion of a progress note. Repeated late submissions may result in an unsatisfactory grade.

Clinical Remedial Process

The Faculty and the Practice Application Specialists are committed to provide students with clinical experiences that enhance learning as well as to ensure the safety of patients in the clinical setting. The program is designed so that students are equipped with optimal theoretical and practical knowledge in order to provide safe care to patients. Students who are deemed by their clinical educator/team member as not meeting safety and/or clinical outcomes may be removed from the clinical area. To facilitate student success, a student will be given a Referral to Lab for assistance with the goal of returning to the clinical setting and completing the course. While this process is meant to support student success, it does not guarantee a pass in the course.

Requisite Skills and Abilities to Attend Professional Practice Placements

Professional practice or clinical practice is part of each level of the Practical Nursing Program at Conestoga College. The expectation is that students attend 100% of their clinical experience and fully participate in providing patient care. A primary responsibility of the Program is consideration for the health and safety of patients/clients/residents in the clinical setting and of students. The Practical Nursing Program, in keeping with requirements set out by the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) and reflected in the entry-to-practice competencies, requires that students meet the requisite skills and abilities as defined by the College of Nurses (2012). The components necessary for nursing practice have been placed in the following 7 categories:

  • Cognitive
  • Communication
  • Interpersonal
  • Behavioural
  • Psychomotor
  • Sensory
  • Environmental
The Practical Nursing Program requests practice placements for our students from our clinical partners. This relationship is formalized through affiliation agreements which define responsibilities of both parties. Students are guests in these practice environments who must abide by the policies and procedures of the site and ensure principles of infection prevention and control are maintained.

If a student cannot meet the requisite skills and abilities and/or requires the use of assistive devices that may contribute negatively to infection prevention and control practices, the student will not be permitted to participate in professional practice activities. Each case will be considered individually and evaluated by the Level Coordinator. In order to return to placement, medical documentation is required that clearly indicates the student is able to resume full duties without any restrictions.

College of Nurses of Ontario. (2012) Requisite Skills and abilities for nursing practice in Ontario. Toronto, Ontario: College of Nurses of Ontario, p.1-3.

Campus Clinical

Campus Clinical is considered clinical practice. Attendance is mandatory. Campus Clinical involves experiential activities designed to strengthen skills and develop clinical judgment.  A variety of events ranging from case-based scenarios to simulated clinical environments challenge the student to critically think and problem solve which enhances understanding of concepts and improves confidence.

Assignment Policies

The expectation of Health Professionals is that they complete assigned work competently and in the allocated time, or that they anticipate difficulty in meeting deadlines and notify the appropriate person(s). 
The following regulations regarding assignments reflect this belief and are designed to ensure that graduates of the program meet these expectations.

Written Assignments  

  • Students are required to submit all written assignments on or before the date and time specified.
  • Students should anticipate problems that will necessitate an extension of time. If an extension of time is required, students will make this request to the appropriate Faculty prior to the due date and time.
  • Assignments that do not meet the above criteria will lose 10% of the value of the assignment for each day late, including weekends and holidays.
  • Turnitin may be required for an assignment. If the assignment is not submitted as instructed, it may receive a grade of "0".​​
  • Assignments must: be typed, double-spaced, and in APA @Conestoga format.
  • Do not include any identifying information regarding clients.

Working together on Group Assignments

Students will often work with their fellow peers on various assignments/projects throughout the program. Each group member is responsible for ensuring that they have an equal role in the group. All students in the group should review the completed work before it is submitted/ presented. When issues/concerns arise during the group process, it is the responsibility of group members to contact the course professor for assistance prior to due date. 

Faculty Returning Tests and Assignments

In order to support student success, students will be given continual feedback on their progress throughout the semester. Individual Faculty will inform students in class how/when tests and assignments and/or marks will be returned. Students who have questions about tests/assignments/grades should follow the process outlined below:

  • At least 24 hours after receiving the mark and within 5 days,
  • Write a note to the Faculty, indicating the area(s) of clarification required,
  • Initiate a meeting with the Faculty to discuss,  
  • Bring pertinent information (assignment, mark sheet, etc.) to the appointment,
  • Under no circumstances are students to enter the offices of Faculty or look through papers on a desk without a Faculty present.

Tests and Examinations

  1. Students are expected to attend all tests/examinations as set by the program.  
  2. Students must present official photo ID to sign-in for the test/examination. Students will not be permitted to write the test/exam until photo ID is shown.
  3. Students must be punctual for a test or examination. Students who are late will not be given extra time. No late arriving student may begin writing the examination or test after any student has left the examination or test room. All students must stay for the first 30 minutes. 
  4. Students are to bring only what is necessary to the examination room. Keep personal belongings (hats, coats, bags, and pencil cases), cell phones and other communication devices in your locker. If a student is found to have any communication device with them during the examination/test, it will be deemed to be cheating and the appropriate course of action will be followed. 
  5. Students will need to have HB lead pencils (sharpened), an eraser (and highlighter if desired). Students will not be allowed to share materials i.e. eraser, pencils and calculators. 
  6. Students are responsible for following the directions accurately for completion of the General Purpose Answer Sheet. Students are responsible for their own errors and the Answer Sheet will NOT be hand-marked. 
  7. When leaving the examination room, the student must SUBMIT ALL EXAMINATION MATERIALS, including examination booklet, sheets and spoiled sheets. When returning these materials, only one examinee at a time can be checked out; please be patient while waiting. 
  8. Examination/test marks are usually posted within two weeks from the date of writing. The final examination results will be posted by the Friday of exam week. It is each student's personal responsibility to obtain their own mark from the Student Portal. 
  9. Cheating on tests or examinations is unacceptable. A student who is caught cheating will be disciplined according to college policy.
  10. Accommodations for examination procedure are facilitated by Accessibility Services for students, as prescribed.
  11. A test may only be reviewed before the next scheduled test. Faculty will not review all semester tests with a student immediately prior to final exams.

Methods of Evaluation

Methodology for evaluation includes:

  • Presentations – enhances group work and clear, concise spoken communication; 
  • Written assignments – enhances clear, concise written communication;
  • Observation of clinical and lab performance;
  • Preparation and participation;
  • ePortfolio.

Types of Evaluation


Formative evaluation is an on-going process whereby the teaching/learning team and student collect data during the learning phase of the student's practice. Students will submit reflections as directed by the course facilitator. A midterm formative evaluation may be completed. The teaching/learning team monitors the student's progress toward achievement of the semester/program outcomes, and provides on-going feedback to the student on a regular basis. 


This is the final evaluation at the end of the practice experience. Summative evaluation is the documentation of the behaviour the student has mastered and the behaviour that the student must improve or change. This evaluation should contain all the information that has been shared with the student during the period of learning. 

The forms and their purpose are as follows: 
Several forms are utilized to document a student's progress. Formative and summative evaluations for practice experience are kept in the School of Health & Life Sciences in the student's file. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure all formative and summative evaluations are added to their ePortfolio each semester.

Progress Note:

This document will be completed at the discretion of the Program Team Member, coordinators, or Program Chair when a student's practice and/or classroom performance or behaviour is:
  • Of Concern
  • Unacceptable
  • Unsatisfactory
This document supports your success through the identification goals and required actions. 

Summative Evaluation
This document is completed by the practice application specialists/Faculty to reflect student progress at the end of the clinical experience.

Academic Progress Through the Program

​​​​Academic Standing and Promotion

The Conestoga Student Guide is your first source for information concerning academic regulations, policies and procedures. The Conestoga Student Guide is available on the college website and by visiting the "Student Guide" tab in your Student Portal.


  • Students must attain the minimum passing grade stated on each Course Outline.
  • Students who have met all course requirements at each level will be promoted to the following level or graduation.

Promotion Process

The courses in the program are designed to be taken in a certain order, since the content of a number of the courses builds on the content in some of the preceding courses. A student who is not successful in core courses may not be permitted to go on to subsequent courses before achieving a passing grade in the course. This may mean the student will have to drop to "part-time" status.

Part-time students must discuss the order in which they are taking courses with the Doon Campus Program Coordinator before enrolling in the course(s).

Requirements for Taking the Clinical Placement Courses

All the lab and theory courses must be completed successfully each semester before a student can take the precept​​ored Pre-graduate Consolidation.


Promotion is the advancement from one level of the program to another after a process of evaluation, which ensures specific program outcomes have been met. Promotion is based on academic achievement, satisfactory practice performance, and professionalism. 
Promotion review occurs at the completion of each semester. Criteria for being reviewed by the promotion committee include:

  • Failure in one or more courses during the semester.
  • Patterns of absence from class or practice which may affect achieving program standards.
  • Failure to follow through on previous Promotion Committee requirements.
  • Unprofessional behaviour as evidenced in evaluation measures and progress reports within courses.

Promotion Criteria:

  • Completed and passed all required courses in the semester, with a mark of 65% for theory courses and 70% for clinical lab courses.
  • Promotion to level 4 – additionally, a student must have a passing grade in all courses from semester 1 through 3, including Interdisciplinary Studies, prior to commencement in any level 4 courses.

Promotion Decisions:

The Promotion Committee may make the following decisions:

  • Eligible to continue in the program.
  • Complete make-up work for missed skill lab experiences with a satisfactory grade.
  • Receive a grade of Incomplete for the course, with specific requirements to be met for a final grade to be assigned.
  • Repeat the course at the earliest opportunity.
  • Complete supplementary work (see eligibility criteria and process).
  • Placed on Probationary Status for the next placement course or for the remainder of placement courses. Probationary Status requirements must then be met for the student to continue in the program.
  • Follow through with counselling (academic or personal).
  • Follow through with health measures as recommended.
  • Discontinued from the program.

Supplemental Work

Students who have one course failure within the semester and have regularly attended the failed class may be offered supplemental work based on eligibility criteria. Supplemental work will take place in the week after the final exam week.  
Eligibility for Supplemental- must meet all of the following criteria:

  • Must have passed at least one test/exam in the course in which the failure occurred.
  • Final course grade must be within 10% of the passing grade e.g. minimum of 55% for theory course; 60% for clinical course in PN.
  • Only 1 course failure in the semester.
  • Has not used more than 1 supplemental while in the program. A maximum of 2 supplemental work opportunities are permitted throughout the program.

A supplemental evaluation will not be granted for a course in which a student has received an academic offence. An academic incident resulting in a warning is not considered an academic offence.

Supplemental Result

A student who is successful in the supplemental work will receive the minimum passing grade for the course.

Failure to pass a supplemental will result in either:

  • Repeating the course, if eligible.
  • Discontinuance from the program, if meets discontinuance criteria.

For more information visit the College Policies, Procedures, Practices and Guidelines webpage at then click on the Academic Administration side tab and search for the document entitled Clearance of Academic Deficiency.


Students who fail to meet the program standards (academically, clinically, or ethically) will be discontinued from the program, based on the recommendation of the promotion committee and agreement from the program Chair. Students will be discontinued when they are no longer eligible to repeat a course based on the academic rules below, or as a result of failure to meet program standards for behaviour or ethics. Such students will be entitled to appeal the discontinuance decision in accordance with the College's appeal process.

Academic Rules Pertaining to Discontinuance

  • The opportunity to repeat a Nursing Practice or Lab course resulting from course failure will be granted only once during the duration of the program. If a student is discontinued from the program and is later readmitted, the student will not be granted a repeat of a newly failed clinical or lab course.
  •  The maximum number of theoretical courses that can be repeated during the program is three (3).
  • Any individual course can only be repeated once.

Readmission to the Program

To be readmitted to the program, the student must apply through the Registrar's Office by April 1st for the fall term and November 1st for the winter term. Readmission is based on seat availability and academic status.

Guidelines for Approving Readmission

Students will be rank ordered for readmission using the following criteria:

  1. Students in good academic standing who have withdrawn from the program due to illness or personal circumstances.
  2. Students who have one discontinuance as a result of course failure and whose academic status/ performance and extra-curricular preparation suggests that they will be successful in the program if readmitted.

Students who do not meet the above criteria will not be readmitted. If there are more students within any category than space in the program can accommodate, the following academic factors will also be considered when categorizing students for readmission:

  1. Students in good academic standing: overall grade point average (GPA), evidence that the illness or personal circumstances are managed.
  2. Students with one discontinuance: GPA and the number of courses failed and dropped.

Only one opportunity to be readmitted is permitted. A student who repeats a previously failed course and does not pass that course will be discontinued.
An applicant who has been accepted for readmission must successfully complete:

  1. The final theoretical exam(s) from the level below the one they are applying to. 
  2. A skills challenge on skills from the levels below the one they are applying to.

If the applicant fails either of the above challenges or has been out of the program 2 years or longer, the applicant must repeat the core courses from the previous level.

Request to Transfer into the Program – Practical Nursing

Permission to transfer into the Practical Nursing program may be granted to students who have previously been enrolled in another practical nursing program. Applicants requesting admission into semester one must apply for the program through OCAS prior to the published application deadlines. Applicants requesting admission into semester 2 must complete an application through OCAS for advanced standing. No requests for admission beyond semester 2 will be considered due to the wide variation in the order of courses within the college system.

Minimum Admission criteria on transfer:

  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4 point scale (70%).
  • Provides a transcript demonstrating that they are in good academic standing in the practical nursing program at their current or previous institution. Students cannot transfer in if they have been discontinued or are on probation, or if they have previous academic integrity offences within their practical nursing program.
  • Must not have been out of the program for more than 1 year.

If applications exceed spaces, applicants will be prioritized based on GPA and interview.

Applicants who are accepted for admission

  1. May be required to complete an approved gerontology course prior to the first day of classes.
  2. Must provide a clear vulnerable sector screening (police check).
  3. Must meet all non-academic requirements, including immunizations, CPR, First Aid, OHS1320.
  4. Must attend semester 1 College orientation.

Only one opportunity to be readmitted is permitted. A student who repeats a previously failed course and does not pass that course will be discontinued.


Students have the right to appeal any academic decisions as set out in the Conestoga Student Guide.

Special Timetables/Adding Dropped or Failed Courses

Please note that when students are not taking the program in the prescribed sequence, they will be on "special timetables".  Students must seek assistance from their Program Coordinator during the "Special Timetable Registration" initiated by the college. Dates, times, and locations of Special Timetable Registration periods are posted in the student portal in advance of the beginning of each semester.  Students must attend this meeting where they will receive further guidance regarding this academic status from their Program Coordinator.


Students are expected to respond to their invitation through their Student Portal. Convocation ceremonies are held in the winter, spring, and fall of each academic year. Students, who take longer than the advertised program length, are responsible for completing any new or additional courses due to a program design change. Students who complete their program are required to fill out an Application to Graduate form and submit it with payment to the registrar's office. Students who are discontinued or have withdrawn and then return to the college will be placed in the current program design and must meet all requirements to graduate.

​General Education / Interdisciplinary Electives

School of Interdisciplinary Studies

The purpose of diploma General Education electives and Interdisciplinary electives is to provide graduates with the skills and knowledge to succeed not just in their chosen career fields, but in all life paths. Working collaboratively with your program,  diploma General Education and degree Interdisciplinary​ elective courses cultivate critical and creative thinking skills, civic engagement and knowledge of the broader world of arts, culture and science that helps make you more reflective, creative, and effective in your own life.

All Ontario College Diploma, Ontario College Advanced Diploma, and Degree programs at Conestoga require students to complete general education electives / interdisciplinary breadth.

More information on these courses can be found at

​​​​Process for resolution of student concerns

To resolve any concerns that may arise during a course, field placement, or relating to the overall program, students are encouraged to resolve issues or concerns informally at the program level before proceeding to a formal appeal.

If attempts have been made for a resolution, yet no satisfactory outcome was reached, students are encouraged to refer to the Polic​ies and Procedures​ page, and to follow the procedures outlined under the "Academic Di​​spute Resolution and A​​ppeal Proc​edure".​​

​​​Maintaining Student Files

  1. Official records of each student's education are maintained electronically by the Registrar.
  2. Administrative records related to your experience in the program are maintained to demonstrate compliance with external and college requirements. The information is as follows:
Administrative Records
Student Information (if applicable)File Location and Student AccessRetention

Pre-Placement Health Requirements

  • Copies of information received from student.

In H.S Trax, by individual student access, accessed through My Conestoga

  • Each student has their own information on the Passport for provision to placement agencies.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.

Acknowledgement of WSIB understanding.

  • Signed electronically by student prior to the first field placements.
  • By Program, online.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.

Student Consents signed on admission electronically.

  • Student Consent for Release of Information.
  • Student Understanding of Professional Standards.
  • Student Understanding of Safety Requirements.
  • Filed electronically.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.
  1. Academic Files are set up as required for a student to document important matters relevant to a student's progress or to document and monitor resolution of concerns.
Academic Records
Student InformationFile Location and Student AccessRetention

Documents related to academic progress

  • Correspondence regarding course equivalencies.
  • Correspondence regarding supplementary examinations.
  • Learning Contracts.
  • Disabilities Information and plans.
  • In Student File, maintained by the Program Coordinator, initially, and then filed during the student's stay in the Program – maintained by Program Assistant.
For 1 year following graduation or as required by accrediting body.
Records of Competency AttainmentAs above.As above.

Documents related to areas of concern

  • Interview records, supporting email documentation.
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities.
  • Incident reports.
  • Letters/emails of significant concern and replies.
  • Appeals.
As above.As above.
  1. Students may review the contents of their academic file by:
    • Requesting this in writing to the Program Coordinator.
    • Reviewing the file in the presence of their Program Coordinator.

​​Additional Information for Students

Change of name, address and telephone number

Change of name, home, temporary residence address, and telephone numbers must be reported immediately in writing to the Registrar's Office. Forms for reporting changes are available from the Registrar's office. Failure to report these changes could seriously hamper relevant communication between the college and the student.

Work-Integrated Learning Experiences

​​​​​Student Consent Forms

Students are required to complete program specific consent forms if applicable. To access the forms, students need to visit the WIL Document Services Community in myConestoga and see Consent Forms tab. 

Pre-WIL Health Requirements

Mandatory work-integrated learning (WIL) health and safety requirements must be completed by students prior to student WIL experiences. Successful WIL completion is required for students to progress to program completion.  To qualify for WIL experiences, students must present the following at the start of the program in accordance with pre-admission information provided by the College:           

  • A complete immunization record including MMR, Tdap, Varicella, Polio, and Hepatitis B. Covid-19 immunizations are strongly encouraged, as this may be a requirement of your WIL site. ​Seasonal flu vaccination is required during flu season (October – March). TB Testing: Evidence of current 2-step or previous 2-step + current 1.
  • Standard First Aid and CPR – BLS level
  • Respirator Fit Testing
  • An annual Police Check including Vulnerable Sector Screening (VSS).  Police Checks must be clear of any unpardoned criminal offences. An unclear criminal record may result in the inability to participate in WIL experiences which will jeopardize progress in the program. Acceptance for WIL is at the discretion of the agency; some agencies may request students to provide a VSS completed within six months of WIL start date. Students with criminal records are advised to meet with the program chair for academic counselling to determine program suitability.

​Safety in the Workplace Course (OHS1320)

All students who participate in unpaid work-integrated learning (WIL) experiences during the course of their program will be required to successfully complete the mandatory Safety in the Workplace course prior to going out on WIL.  The course will provide students with an introduction to workplace hazards and general safety awareness. Students will receive a Record of Completion to provide evidence of this training to WIL experience sites and will consent to their workplace insurance coverage.


Prior to your first WIL experience, you must electronically sign a Declaration of Understanding of WSIB Coverage related to Unpaid Clinical placements indicating you understand that WSIB coverage will be provided through the Ministry of  Colleges and Universities (MCU) while you are on training WIL experiences. This Declaration will be placed in your student file. It is your responsibility to ensure that the Declaration of Understanding for WSIB Coverage has been electronically signed, in the Safety in the Workplace Course - OHS1320, and visible on your H.S. Trax home page to be eligible to attend your WIL experience.

Additional Requirements-AODA Training

Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)

The purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) is to ensure that all Ontarians have fair and equitable access to programs and services and to improve opportunities for persons with disabilities.

All students must complete AODA training in the first semester.

Basic Safety Training

All students must achieve 100% on WHMIS test in the first semester.

Conestoga College is committed to establishing and maintaining a healthy and safe work and study environment.

General safety considerations will be provided in the Orientation in the Cowan Health Sciences Centre. Throughout your course of study, your teacher will guide you through the use of safe work practices.  Safety considerations and the safe handling and use of equipment in the Cowan Health Sciences Centre are incorporated within the learning outcomes of your program.

It is the student's responsibility to follow guidelines for safety once they have been taught and to ensure that they have had training on the use of any equipment prior to its use.

Any person who fails to comply with Health and Safety regulations or handles equipment in an unsafe or abusive manner will be asked to leave the Cowan Health Sciences Centre.

The Practice Application Specialists and Clinical Simulation Educator have the authority to ask any person who fails to comply with Health and Safety regulations or handles equipment in an unsafe or abusive manner to leave the Cowan Health Sciences Centre.

Concerns Regarding Student Safety or the Safety and Care/Service for Clients

WIL experiences provide the opportunity to demonstrate and enhance your learning in the practice environment.  These WIL experiences have been organized by your Program in partnership with the organization where you have been placed.

The following procedures have been developed to make it easier to identify and address any concerns or issues regarding your safety or the safety and care of clients that may come up during the WIL experience in a way that supports both a solid learning experience and a constructive partnership with the WIL site.

A. Communication of General Concerns regarding Your Safety or The Safety and Care/Service for Clients

  1. Students will be provided with an Orientation to their WIL site on the first day of their WIL experience.  The Orientation may include details of the WIL site's policies and procedures related to communication about the safety of the work environment and /or the safety and care of patients/residents/clients.
  2. If a student has any concerns about the safety of the work environment and/or the safe/appropriate care/service for clients:

a. The student must immediately report these concerns to the College individual associated with the WIL experience (Clinical Instructor, Faculty responsible for your WIL experience, WIL Supervisor).

b. The Clinical Instructor /Responsible Faculty/WIL Supervisor will discuss this concern with Site Management

c. For concerns of a serious nature (e.g. concerns impacting a total student group; a serious care/service situation), the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Supervisor will discuss the situation with the Program Coordinator and, potentially, the Department Chair. The Coordinator or Chair will immediately contact WIL site management to determine next steps.

Should facility policies require that WIL experience students report safety or care/service concerns immediately to WIL site management, the student should report to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Officer immediately afterward.

B. Reporting of Incidents of Student Injury during a WIL Experience

  1. Should students experience a personal injury of any kind, this must be reported immediately to the WIL Employer and Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Supervisor. The WIL Employer will provide first-aid that may be necessary, including arranging for transportation to emergency medical services if required.  The Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Supervisor will notify the Program Coordinator and Chair and complete an Unpaid Work/Education Placement-Accident Report (UWEP-04) and will send this to the College's Occupational Health & Safety Office.  Where necessary, the Occupational Health & Safety Office will complete a WSIB 7 form, a Letter of Authorization to Represent Placement Employer and a Work/Education Placement Agreement Form.

C. Reporting of Student Involvement in Situations of Possible Injury to Clients during a WIL Experience or Student Damage to Facility Property

  1. Should students be involved in care/service situations where there the care/service results in a potential concern/injury to patients/residents/clients of the WIL site, this concern must be immediately reported to the WIL Site in order that care can be given.  This situation must also be reported immediately to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Supervisor.  The Faculty member will discuss this immediately with the WIL site and ensure that an incident report is completed.  The Faculty member must also inform the Program Coordinator and the Department Chair for a discussion of program expectations and implications.  It is the responsibility of the Chair to ensure that all documentation is obtained regarding the incident and to inform College officials accordingly.
  2. Should students be involved in situations where there is alleged damage to resources/physical property at the WIL site, this concern must be reported immediately to the WIL Site and to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Officer.  The Faculty member will inform the Program Coordinator and Department Chair for a discussion of program expectations and implications.  It is the responsibility of the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Officer to complete an incident report with the Chair accountable to ensure all documentation is obtained and to inform College officials accordingly.

Part-time work

While students are enrolled in the Practical Nursing Program:

  1. Student priority needs to be safe competent care in their role as a student. Students who attend clinical sleep-deprived from working at outside employment will be asked to leave the clinical.
  2. Assigned functions and responsibilities within any clinical agency in which they are employed will not be recognized by the college in any form or fashion.
  3. The college does not assume responsibility for student performance while they work part-time in a clinical agency.
  4. Students are not to wear the crest or name bar showing the Conestoga College logo or the Conestoga College student PN uniform.
  5. Students are advised that trying to maintain numerous hours in part-time employment may impact success in the full-time program.
  6. If a highly contagious outbreak occurs and a student is employed in a health care agency, their employment hours and/or clinical placement hours may be directly affected dependent on the agency's Infection Control Policy.

Reference letters from Faculty

Reference letters are to be negotiated with appropriate Faculty members on an individual basis. Students should discuss the appropriateness of telephone reference checks or formal letters with Faculty prior to giving the potential employer their contact information. It is not appropriate for the Program Coordinator or Chair to provide detailed reference information to potential employers.

Student Awards

​​​Conestoga has more than 400 awards, bursaries, scholarships and academic grants available to Conestoga students. These funds are made available to our students through the partnerships we have established with local businesses, industry leaders, and generous donors. To be considered for an award, complete the General Application form available through your Student Portal. Notifications and instructions to complete the application are sent to all full-time students’ email accounts in the fall semester (Deadline: First Friday in October) and winter semester (Deadline: First Friday in February). For more information, visit Student Financial Services.​​​​

​Awards Available for Practical Nursing Students

The following awards* are available to the students of Practical Nursing Program. Students who have questions about any of these awards should speak with their Program Coordinator. Please watch your college email for information from the Financial Aid office concerning application deadlines, processes and eligibility. You may obtain information about other school wide awards and scholarships from Financial Aid. You can find the General Awards Application online.

* Note: All awards are current at time of print, subject to change.

Undergraduate Awards​
Award NameEstimated AmountYear or Level# of awardsCriteriaSelection Process
Bruce Huffman Memorial Award$250End of Year 11Academically most improved, strong clinical skills, promoted to Year 2.Nominated
Red Cross CarePartners Practical Nursing Award$250End of Year 11Registered as full time student in Year 2, good academic standing and demonstrates dedication to their education and a high level of excellence in clinical.Nominated
George Carl Watters Bird ScholarshipEndowment - TBDEnd of Semester 31Interest in psychiatric nursing, requested semester 4 placement in psychiatry.Nominated


Graduate Awards​
Award NameEstimated AmountYear or Level# of awardsCriteriaSelection Process
Faculty Award$150Graduate1Above average grades in theory and application of theory to clinical.Nominated

Pat Legault Memorial Award For The Art of Nursing





Consistently demonstrated caring in nursing,

Individualizes care for each patient.

Maintains the privacy and dignity of each patient.

Involves the patient and family in care.

Demonstrates sensitivity to the needs of the patient.

Palliative Care Award$250Graduate1Interest in pursuing palliative care, good academic standing, strong practical skills, leadership, caring and compassion.Nominated
RPNAO Award for Student ExcellenceOne year membership & malpractice insuranceGraduate1Demonstrates leadership, self-directed learning, theory and clinical nursing, professional & personal growth & supports the professional organization.Nominated
Sunnyside Home Award for General Proficiency in Nursing$500


December only

1Above average grades in theory and application of theory to clinical.Nominated


School Sponsored Awards ​​
Award NameEstimated AmountYear or Level# of awardsCriteriaSelection Process
Partners Enhancing Practice - TD Awards$500Graduate1/intakeInquisitive nature and curiosity about other professions, understand the roles of others, Thinks carefully about the plan of care and engages other disciplines in that care, accountability for their actions and communicates information and action accordingly, Demonstrates professionalism and safe patient practice, Demonstrates leadership and engagement in school wide inter-professional initiatives , demonstrate financial need.Nominated & presented at the Annual School Awards Partners Enhancing Practice Ceremony.
Canadian Federation of University Women$500Year 2475% +, female registered in Year 2, demonstrate financial need, intellectual achievement and promise.
Apply through Financial Aid

Academic Delivery Plan and College Hours

​​​Academic Delivery Plan Fall 2021

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Conestoga has developed an academic delivery plan for the Fall 2021 semester. The safety and well-being of our college community remains our highest priority. Our academic plans and decisions continue to be based on the advice of public health authorities. 

Some programs will be delivered in a hybrid format (a combination of remote and on-campus learning). Other programs will be delivered in a remote format only. Courses in which remote delivery is not possible will be offered entirely through on-campus delivery.

For the Fall, only students who have classes scheduled on campus will be pre-approved to be on-campus. Students need to complete a mandatory pre-approval process before they can attend their class.  Students who do not have scheduled activity are not permitted on-campus. Support services for students will continue to be available remotely.

College Hours

For the Fall 2021 semester, to support physical distancing on campus, full-time courses at Conestoga are delivered Monday to Sunday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Effective January 2022: Full-time courses at Conestoga are typically delivered Monday to Saturday, 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. *

*In some instances, classes will be scheduled outside of this time frame and may include Sunday, to accommodate course, program and college requirements.*​​

Web-based Tools

​Program courses may use web-based services with data centres outside of Canada. Students may be expected to complete assessments where information is transmitted outside of Canada. Students who do not wish to submit their information to other countries have the right to opt-out. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the instructor if they, in the first week of term or at the time assignment details are provided, wish to submit an alternate assignment.

Course examinations may be administered through a remote proctoring service to assure academic integrity. Ensure that you meet the system requirements that will allow the recording of your computer screen, webcam, and microphone.

Attendance at Evaluations

Working Together to Plan Your Success

Your success matters! As an emerging professional, it is important that you demonstrate the same professional attitude to your program that you will be required to demonstrate to your future workplace. Regular, punctual attendance, and active participation in scheduled classes, field and clinical placements, labs and any on-campus and off-campus activities scheduled by your program will help you to understand and master the learning complexities of your program.
If extenuating, unplanned circumstances require you to miss a class, please note that it is your responsibility to follow up with individual faculty members and to acquire any missed information.

Attendance for Evaluations

Evaluations are critical components of each course and your overall success in your program. An evaluation is defined as a test, exam, presentation or any other formal assessment that contributes to your course mark that requires your presence, in class or on-line. Please note that in many programs across the College, every field placement, clinical day, and lab/shop day is considered crucial to your overall learning and success and the expectation is that you attend.  If you are in a program that includes field or clinical placements, labs/shops, or any other on or off campus activities, it is essential that you discuss attendance requirements with your program faculty in order to understand expectations and consequences.

Your attendance for all evaluations is a requirement. If there is a concerning pattern of absence from evaluations across your program, you may be asked to meet with the Program Coordinator and/or Student Advisor to discuss strategies for success.

While circumstances such as religious holidays and academic accommodations may necessitate rescheduling of evaluations and will be accommodated, please note that there will be no special arrangements made for rescheduling evaluations due to personal conflicts such as work or vacation plans.  

In order to facilitate a smooth implementation for all scheduled evaluations, both you and your program faculty have responsibilities which are listed below:

Faculty Responsibilities

  • To communicate all course obligations to you at the beginning of each semester through the Instructional Plan, including evaluation and presentation dates.
  • To communicate, in writing, any unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program or the faculty members that may require changes to the course schedule.
  • To provide alternative evaluation arrangements for missed evaluations/work due to recognized religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council and documented accommodations through the Accessibility Office.
  • To accept alternative evaluation requests in good faith and examine based on the unique circumstances and students' individual needs.
  • To facilitate alternative evaluation arrangements as described below.

Student Responsibilities

  • To be informed about all course obligations and due dates.
  • To inform your faculty member in writing of the need to reschedule evaluations due to a religious holiday as defined by the College Employer Council.
  • If you have to be absent from any scheduled evaluation, report your absence on the Student Portal using the procedure below. You must do this prior to the start of the evaluation or risk receiving a mark of zero.

How to Report Absences on the Student Portal

  1. Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
  2. Indicate whether or not there is an assessment scheduled on that day by clicking 'Yes or No', as well as the reason for the absence (illness or other).
  3. Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
  4. Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
  5. You will receive a confirmation email that your absence has been recorded.

Important! Please note the following:

  • The earliest you can record an absence for a particular day, is after 8:00 p.m. the day before. You must report each day you are absent.
  • The Absence Recording System will show you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you recorded the absence. For example, if you record your absence on a specific day at 11:00 a.m., the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11:00 a.m. that day.
  • If you are going to be present for any other classes on the day for which you recorded an absence, please let the faculty member know by attending or following up by eConestoga or college email.
  • When you return to campus, make eConestoga or email contact immediately with the faculty member associated with the evaluation you missed in order to arrange appropriate follow up.

Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations Less than 20%

Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances such as brief illness do arise during the semester and that a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary. A valid absence from a scheduled evaluation worth less than 20% of the final grade which is not documented through the Accessibility Office or previously arranged due to religious holidays, will be accommodated once per course during the semester, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above. If the evaluation cannot be rescheduled, (for example an experiential activity, lab or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks to another evaluation item will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via email to their eConestoga or college email address, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.

Absence from additional scheduled evaluations worth less than 20% in the same course may require documentation for verification.

Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations 20% or More

Absence from scheduled evaluations worth 20% or more of the final grade that are not documented through the Accessibility Office or arranged due to religious holidays, will require appropriate documentation for verification, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above.

Alternative Evaluation Arrangements

  • Faculty members will determine alternative evaluation arrangements as appropriate. During the pandemic, on-campus Test Centres will be closed.
  • Students will complete any necessary forms. 
  • Students are required to complete the alternative evaluation as scheduled. If an evaluation cannot be rescheduled (for example an experiential activity or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via eConestoga or college email or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.

Program Handbook Revision Log



​June 23, 2017

​Brett Gibson

​June 5, 2018

​Krisden Galloway

​July 9, 2019

​Julia Rodricks

​July 17, 2020

​Beth Davidson

​July 13, 2021

​Beth Davidson

Accommodation Disclaimer

​Conestoga College provides an equitable environment where all students have the opportunity to participate in College life. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code, Conestoga recognizes its responsibility and legal obligation to provide education, information and services in an accessible manner.

Conestoga's Accessible Learning services provide support for students with permanent and temporary disabilities who feel they are encountering barriers to learning. They work with students to understand the impact of a disability in the college environment and will help develop a success plan that considers student goals and required academic accommodations. Accessible Learning will also communicate necessary accommodations to professors on behalf of the student. 

To consult with an Accessibility Advisor about accommodations please make an appointment by emailing or calling 519-748-5220 ext. 3232.

Exceptions for non-accessibility focused issues need to be consulted on with your professor. Final approval for exceptions unrelated to academic accommodations rests with the program chair.

Practical Nursing