Personal Support Worker to Practical Nurse Bridge
2022/23 | Conestoga College
Program Code: 2077
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 Academic 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 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.
This handbook must be read in conjunction with general information about Conestoga College found on the website and in the Student Guide. The information in the Student Guide and on the college website applies to all students, regardless of program.
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 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, email@example.com): 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.
It is the student's responsibility to be aware of various important academic dates throughout the year. These academic dates are posted on the college website.
Please note that Continuing Education courses and Apprenticeship programs may have different start dates and exam dates for courses.
Letter to Students
Welcome to the PSW-PN Bridge Program at Conestoga College.
This handbook has been prepared to provide information about academic standards, guidelines and processes specific to the PSW-PN Bridge program. It has been compiled with careful consideration for your personal and professional growth during your studies at Conestoga College. Reading, understanding, and following the information in this handbook are essential steps to you achieving success in this program and your chosen profession.
Please know that your previous education and experience are acknowledged. They will provide a sound foundation upon which to build your nursing knowledge and practice within the context of the bridge program.
Use the index in this handbook as your guide and the contents as your continuous reference as you proceed through the program. Faculty will refer to the handbook often, but the responsibility for knowing the program standards is ultimately yours.
There will be changes in what is required of you throughout your program because of the evolving COVID-9 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 PSW-PN Bridge Program Handbook, the Conestoga College Student Guide outlines important policies and procedures for you to follow. The PSW-PN Bridge Program Handbook is a supplement to, but not a replacement for, the Conestoga College Student Guide.
Together, our team is dedicated to making your learning experience an enriching one. We are here to help you be successful. Should you require assistance in any area of your studies throughout your time at Conestoga College, please speak directly with your faculty members and/or the Program Chair.
I wish you the very best in your studies and look forward to meeting each of you during your tenure at Conestoga College.
Heather Cross, Chair of Nursing
Doon Program Description:
The PSW-PN Bridge is a unique pathway that
supports students to build on previous knowledge, skills, and education for the transition from the role of PSW to Practical Nurse. Students in this program
complete four semesters as a part-time PSW-PN Bridge student, and then bridge
to the Practical Nursing program for two semesters full time.
This program is career-focused, with foundational knowledge based on scientific theory from nursing, physical and psychosocial sciences and humanities. Person-centred, population-focused care is learned in context through real-life experiences and career-related placements. Seniors care is given special attention to meet the demands of an aging population.
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 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 skill, 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.
Upon completion of the Practical Nursing Program, our graduates will:
- 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).
- Communicate with clients, families and communities to enhance person-centered care.
- Manage information within a professional, legal, and ethical framework using technology appropriately.
- Demonstrate collaborative practice and leadership supportive of care delivery and team effectiveness.
- Conduct equitable and just relationships with clients and members of the health care team.
- Assess clients across the life span, in a systematic and holistic manner.
- Plan safe and competent nursing care, based upon a thorough analysis of available data and evidence-informed practice guidelines.
- Select and perform nursing interventions using clinical judgment, in collaboration with the client and, where appropriate, the health care team that promote health and well-being, prevent disease and injury, maintain and/or restore health, promote rehabilitation, and/or provide palliation.
- Evaluate the outcomes resulting from all interventions in the nurse-client interaction and modify the plan of care as required.
- Promote healthy and safe work environment in a variety of health care settings.
- 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.
You can find your program design on the student Portal by following the steps below:
- Log in to Student Portal
- Click on 'My Courses' tab
- 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.
Credit Transfer, Pathways & PLAR
Conestoga recognizes you may have formal post-secondary education that may allow you to enter a program at an advanced level or provide for individual course exemptions. To ensure your credits are eligible for transfer, please contact our Credit Transfer Office at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Credit Transfer Policy and Procedure are available on the college website.
If you are currently a Conestoga student and want to continue studying at Conestoga, there are a number of different pathway opportunities available to you.
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 College has articulation agreements with many domestic and international institutions. These agreements allow students to transfer into a specific program with advanced standing. Students must meet the academic requirements stated in the agreement.
For more information regarding pathways at Conestoga, contact the Credit Transfer Officer at 519-748-5220 ext. 2166.
Employment OpportunitiesGraduates 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 health-care 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
Contacting Faculty or Staff
When contacting faculty or staff (via email or by phone), 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 or email contact where you can be reached
All students are supplied with a Conestoga email address. All communications will be via your Conestoga email address or posted on Conestoga's online Learning Management System – eConestoga. Use only your Conestoga email address when communicating with faculty and staff. Students are expected to check their Conestoga email regularly.
If you are having problems accessing your Conestoga email, contact the Information Technology (IT) department at ITSDesk@conestogac.on.ca or 519-748-5220 ext. 3444 as soon as possible. Students are accountable for ensuring a functioning email account.
Faculty and Staff Availability
Students are encouraged to connect with faculty to discuss course work, assignments, or other matters related to success at Conestoga.
Procedures for Meeting with Faculty and Staff
To schedule a meeting with faculty or staff, please contact the person by email. Meetings may be held in person, virtually or by telephone.
Technical RequirementsStudent success is important and requires technology to support learning needs. To effectively participate in remote learning and complete class assignments and virtual testing, students must have reliable internet access and meet the following device requirements:
- A laptop or computer with reliable internet access.
- Microsoft Windows 10 or macOC 10.14 (or higher). *Check with your program to see preference.
- Webcam functionality and audio capability (speakers and a quality headset/microphone).
- Office 365 software (note: the college provides registered students access to free software downloads through the following link.
Heather Cross, Chair of Nursing
Nursing Post-Graduate Programs
(519) 748-5220 Ext. 3445
In addition to the above, there are Nursing Faculty who will provide contact information at the beginning of every course.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Program Advisory Committees (PACs)
Program Advisory Committees (PACs) provide the necessary link between Conestoga and the community it serves. PACs operate in an advisory capacity to Conestoga administration with the objective to keep Conestoga responsive to current and future workforce needs, trends or opportunities in industry and the marketplace.
All post-secondary education programs of study at Conestoga, both full-time and part-time, which lead to an employment related credential, or are approved by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU), will be associated with a PAC, with the exception of apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs. For any program not leading to an employment related credential, such as foundation programs, PACs are optional.
At the beginning of each year, the coordinator(s) of the program will ask for student volunteers. The coordinator(s) will select which student(s) will represent the program at PAC. Student attendees are important members of the PAC and are expected to be present at all meetings and are responsible for preparing and submitting 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.
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 10 of classes and provides early feedback to faculty about the student experience within their classroom. The Full-SAT is 43 questions and occurs late in the semester; a summary of the results goes to the faculty member 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 CancellationsStudent Portal and select notifications.
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.
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
- 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.
- 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 which 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 GuidelinesAs a PSW to 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 PSW to 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
- Full, clean, wrinkle free uniform must be worn in clinical areas and simulation/science 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.
- Undergarments must be worn, choice and style should not create a major contrast between body colour and uniform colour.
- Head coverings must be neutral and appropriate to ensure the safety of the student and patient/client.
- 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 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. Long ponytails should be secured upon the head, and not allowed to dangle onto field of care. 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.
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.
- 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 college buildings or clinical or community setting is against the law and may be subject to fine.
Chewing gum is not allowed in clinical, lab or community settings.
Food and Beverages
Food and Beverages are only allowed in designated areas only (cafeteria, student or 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 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, sweatpants, 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 the particular agency policy regarding wearing the uniform to and from the agency setting.
- In agencies that allow uniforms to be worn to and from work, the student must ensure that the uniform is covered when outside of the agency (e.g. with a knee-length coat) and that the student is travelling directly between the agency and home.
- In agencies that require the student to change at the location, the students will wear street clothes to the agency and when returning home. The uniform is to be kept in a protective covering during transit.
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.
Cowan Health Sciences Centre and Lab Spaces
Clinical/Lab Dress Code for all students
In order to maintain all labs as safe professional spaces, appropriate dress must be worn. This dress code aims to ensure the safety of the student, faculty and staff and prepare for the clinical environment. The dress code is designed to comply with infection control procedures, workplace health and safety considerations and professional safety.
All lab areas are covered by this 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.
- Lab coat, scrubs or clinical dress as set forth by the program (should be neat and clean).
- Note: the Cross Centre for Simulation Learning requires full clinical uniform to be worn as per BScN Handbook
- Closed toe, closed heel shoes as per Occupational Health & Safety requirements.
- Hair tied back, up and secured.
- No rings, necklaces or dangling earrings
- A pair of studs may be worn.
- A plain wedding band may be worn
- Nails should be kept neat and short; artificial nails and nail polish are not allowed.
- No hats to be worn (exceptions related to the Human Rights Code).
- No denim or sweat pants.
- Nametags must be worn.
- Scented products (perfume, scented aftershave, hair products) must not be worn.
- Personal hygiene products such as deodorant should be used but unscented.
- No gum chewing is permitted in clinical, lab or community settings.
Requests for accommodations of this policy (e.g. for religious or disability reasons) will be considered within the Conestoga College Policy or Human Rights framework.
Please be reminded that the labs are a clinical setting and, as such, the requirement for proper handwashing/hygiene is in effect.
While every effort is made to maintain a latex-free environment in the clinical learning centre, students must be aware that the centre and clinical placement areas are not latex-free environments.
**Please note: Lab practice expectations including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), will follow College policies and will be described and demonstrated in detail, at the semester start.
Cowan Health Sciences Centre and Lab Spaces
Accessing the Clinical LabsBooking practice time/and or materials may be done in person with attending staff, by telephone 519-748-5220 ext. 3457 or by email email@example.com. 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
- It is preferred that the booking be made at least 24 hours in advance.
- Booking practice time/and or materials by email firstname.lastname@example.org. Include day, time and duration of practice, and full names of all persons in attendance. Keep in mind that you must have at least one other person (in the program) with you for this practice,
- Persons outside the programs in the School of Health & Life Sciences will not be admitted to the Labs and appropriate lab attire must be worn.
- On the day of practice, please check in with Security with your Conestoga ID.
- All students must leave the lab by 2200 hours.
User Responsibility in all Labs
All users will maintain the environment in a safe, clean and tidy manner:
- All equipment must be cleaned, re-stocked and re-wrapped as necessary;
- Beds in a low position, neatly made, furniture positioned appropriately;
- Handle manikins carefully;
- Chairs are to be stacked safely in designated areas when not in use.
Students will be responsible for cleaning and tidying up.
All materials borrowed by teachers and students for use in the labs must be signed for and returned to the centre in good condition within the specified time.
Purses, coats, knapsacks and extra books are to be left in your lockers.
Students are responsible for replacing damaged or lost equipment in any lab.
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.
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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- All safety-related accidents, incidents, and near misses must be reported to the Instructor-in-Charge immediately.
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 that "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 https://www.oct.ca/resources/advisories/use-of-electronic-communication-and-social-media
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.
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 Expectations for Online Engagement
- Student Feedback Policy
- Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure
- Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy & 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.
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.
Attendance and Student Success Strategies
AttendanceIn view of the learning complexities of the PSW-PN Bridge 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 students 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 and report the absence on the student portal.
All students are expected to arrive on time for classroom, lab, clinical, work-integrated learning 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 or clinical or work setting. Evaluations are critical components of each course and indicate overall success in your program.
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.
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 or test. 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.
Students are supported 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 missed work 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 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.
What is Academic Integrity?
Having academic integrity means acting fairly and honestly when engaging in academic activities.
By having and applying an Academic Offences Policy and Procedure, Conestoga ensures graduates complete their studies fairly and honestly through hard work and dedication, and thus are well-prepared for their future careers.
Conestoga facilitates access to print, media, and electronic resources to support and enrich learning, teaching, and research in compliance with the following:
Plagiarism is submitting or presenting work of another person(s)/organization in whole or substantial part as one's own without proper citation and referencing.
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 described 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 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 make sure 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.
In-Person Theory Exams:
- Once a test begins, students may not leave the test room for 30 minutes. If they finish a test before that time, they may review their answers but are expected to sit QUIETLY and not disturb others. Once students leave the room they may only re-enter when invited back by Faculty.
- Any student found cheating during the course of an examination/test will be addressed according to procedures found in Conestoga Student Guide.
- Faculty is responsible to advise as to the material permitted in the testing room. Personal items and learning materials will be left in an area identified by the faculty.
- Faculty will advise as to the seating arrangements of students.
- During open book tests, students must bring their own course materials (books, notes, Learning Packages etc.) for individual use only. Students may not share any of these materials. Electronic devices, such as iPods, text messaging, cell phones, translators, will not be permitted.
On-Line or Remote Theory Exams:
- Tests that are written in virtual testing environments are not considered open book unless specified by faculty.
- While writing virtual tests, students may be required to use a lockdown browser and appear on a webcam for the duration of the test.
Importance of Test and Presentation Dates
Test and assignment dates are scheduled at the beginning of each semester. Unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the College, the Program, or the Faculty may require changes to the course schedule. If this occurs, students will be notified.
Students are required to write all tests during the scheduled in-class test times. Students who make personal commitments that conflict with meeting test and 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). Students who wish to reschedule a test or presentation because of a religious holiday are required to discuss the situation with faculty at the beginning of the semester.
Academic accommodations are provided to students with documented disabilities through the Accessibility Services Office.
The expectation of Health Professionals is that they complete assigned work competently and in the allocated time, or if they anticipate difficulty in meeting deadlines they take responsibility for notifying the appropriate person(s).
The following regulations regarding assignments reflect this belief and are designed to ensure that graduates of the programs meet these expectations.
- 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 may make this request ahead of the assignment due date to the appropriate course instructor. NOTE: An extension of time may be given at the discretion of faculty. An extension will not be given if the request is made on the day the assignment is due.
- Late assignments will be accepted but there will be a 10% penalty for each day the assignment is late up to three days. Assignments that are more than three days late will receive a grade of zero.
- All assignments must be completed. A student will not receive a passing final grade until all assignments have been submitted even if the late penalty reduces the points possible to zero. All late submissions must be turned in by noon on Friday before the week of final exams.
- Assignments are to be submitted according to the submission guidelines and in the format as outlined by the professor.
Submitting Assignments Outside of Class Time
While assignments may be submitted in class or via eConestoga on the day they are due, if circumstances require that they be submitted outside a scheduled class, the following procedure should be followed:
- Provide an electronic copy of your assignment to the faculty as per faculty instructions.
- Contact Faculty by email to alert them that you have submitted your assignment.
- Bring the hard copy of the assignment with an attached copy of the email you sent to the faculty member to the 4B reception area and submit into the Assignment Drop Box by the Receptionist desk.
Working Together on Group Assignments
Students will often work with their fellow peers on various group 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 faculty member for assistance prior to due date.
Faculty Returning Tests & Assignments
- At least 24 hours after receiving the mark and within 7 days, write a note to the faculty, indicating the area(s) of clarification required;
- Initiate a meeting with the faculty to discuss the matter; and
- Bring pertinent information (assignment, mark sheet, etc.) to the appointment.
General Guidelines for Quality of Written Work
In the Health & Life Science programs, both in courses and clinical placement, there are continuous requirements for written work in a variety of formats (papers, assignments, forms and plans, handouts, etc.). It is expected that all students will meet the standard of English required within the profession. Faculty, clinical placement supervisors and cooperating instructors will identify students who are having difficulty in this area and will approach them to discuss the need for improvement. Students may be referred to the Learning Commons to help them improve the quality of their written work.
General Guidelines for Submitting Written Work
For specific course requirements, refer to the Course Schedule and Evaluation Methods information provided in course outlines. If you are not clear about course requirements, discuss this with your faculty.
Unless otherwise indicated by instructors, generally, assignments should be:
- Double spaced and one sided
- Submitted using font size of 12 CPI and standard 1" margins
- Written in a grammatically correct manner (use spell and grammar check)
- Handed in securely fastened with a cover page indicating the course name, faculty's name, student's name, section and date submitted
- Handed in at the beginning of class on the designated due date in class, unless otherwise indicated by instructor
- Formatted using APA@Conestoga
Nursing Practice and Campus Clinical Attendance
Attendance at Nursing Practice and Campus Clinical and college laboratories is considered an evaluation opportunity. The PSW-PN Bridge and 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.
- During clinical placement, students are to remain on the agency premises.
- 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.
- 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
- 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.
- 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%.
RPN’s 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 AssessmentFeedback
Students can expect regular feedback from faculty and staff on their skill performance. Feedback will assist the student to develop proficiency in their skills.
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; and
- 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:
- Make program expectations known, clear and realistic.
- Assist students in developing and/or reviewing a learning plan.
- Base assessments and judgments of nursing practice performance on accurate, significant and relevant sources of data.
- Inform students as soon as performance strengths/limitations are identified.
- Counsel students on corrective actions so that program success can be achieved.
- Facilitate access to appropriate program/college support services and resources.
Nursing Practice Assessments
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.
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.
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/clients 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/clients. 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/client 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:
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 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.
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;
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.
- Of Concern
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
- 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.
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.
Part-time students must discuss the order in which they are taking courses with the Doon Campus Program Coordinator or Associate Chair 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 preceptored Pre-graduate Consolidation.
- Completed and passed all required courses in the semester, with a mark of 65% for theory courses and 70% for clinical lab courses.
You can add, change and drop courses from your portal depending on the dates and which program you are in:
- Log in to the Student Portal
- Click on the "My Courses" tab
- Scroll over the icons to the right of individual course listings. It is strongly recommended that students consult their Program Coordinator and/or Academic Advisor prior to dropping a course.
Students who have been unsuccessful in their field experience, have failed two or more academic courses, and/or have required considerable testing/assignment variances may be recommended for academic probation. Academic probation allows students to be promoted to the next level with academic conditions. Academic conditions are designed as part of written learning contract that the student and Associate Chair create together. The goal of these measures is to allow students to continue in the program accompanied by a supportive plan for success.
Reason for Student Progress Being Reviewed by Promotion Committee
Students who fail to meet program standards will be reviewed by the Promotion Committee.
Reasons for presentation at Promotion Committee Meetings include:
- Failure of a theory course and/or practice course.
- Patterns of absence from online learning environment or WIL experience, which may affect achieving program standards.
- Failure to follow through on previous Promotion Committee recommendations.
A student who has not met the standards will not be promoted to the next level of the program:
- Complete supplemental requirements for course failures (see criteria for writing of supplemental examinations). Following successful completion of supplemental work, the highest course grade that can be achieved is the minimum passing mark for the course.
- Follow through with counselling (academic and/or personal).
- Follow through with health measures as recommended.
- Complete makeup work for missed learning experiences. Total time lost will be assessed on an individual basis. Additional time may be required to complete program objectives.
- Complete the requirements of Probationary Status.
- Complete compulsory practice remedial assignments.
Clearance of Academic Deficiency
A student that is unsuccessful in a course may be granted the opportunity to complete supplemental requirements. Students who are unsuccessful in a course and wish to discuss eligibility for supplemental opportunity must directly contact the course instructor within five (5) working days of receiving the final course grade.
Please note that following the end of the semester, contact with any student eligible to write a supplemental will be made either by phone or email. A specific date and time will be given to each student. If a student cannot be reached or is unavailable at the specified date and time, the student forfeits the opportunity to write a supplemental.
Students who have one course failure within the semester and have regularly attended the failed class may be offered supplemental work in some courses 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 NOT a quiz 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 PSW-PN Bridge and Practical Nursing program combine.
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. Course failures resulting from evaluations associated with in class learning activities and group work are not eligible for supplemental work.
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 https://www.conestogac.on.ca/policies/ 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 Associate Chair. Students will be discontinued when they are no longer eligible to repeat a course based on academic regulations 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.
Students not planning to return to the program the following semester are expected to complete a Withdrawal Form available from the registrar's office, or on the college website.
Prior to transferring to another program, it is recommended that the student meets with the Program Coordinator and/or Academic Advisor. Students who decide to change programs may do so by completing and submitting a program application form to the Registrar's Office. If considering transferring to a program outside the school in which currently enrolled in, students may want to discuss options with a Career Advisor. When a student moves from one Conestoga program to another and where course numbers/codes are identical or equivalent, automatic credit is given if passing grades are met.
Students have the right to appeal any academic decisions as set out in the Conestoga Academic Decision Dispute Resolution and Appeal Procedure. It is recommended that students begin this appeal process by first connecting with the faculty and/or Program Chair.
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 PSW-PN Bridge and Practical Nursing program combined. 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 PSW-PN Bridge and Practical Nursing program combined is three (3).
- Any individual course can only be repeated once.
Readmission to the Program
To be readmitted to the program, the student must contact the Associate Chair by email to arrange an appointment to meet and discuss readmission. Readmission is based on seat availability and academic status.
Guidelines for Approving Readmission
Students will be rank ordered for readmission using the following criteria:
Students in good academic standing who have withdrawn from the program due to illness or personal circumstances.
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:
Students in good academic standing: overall grade point average (GPA), evidence that the illness or personal circumstances are managed.
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:
The final theoretical exam(s) from the level below the one they are applying to.
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 for 2 years or longer, the applicant must repeat the core courses from the previous level.
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. Students will receive an invitation for convocation through the Student Portal. Convocation ceremonies are held in the winter, spring, and fall of each academic year.
General Education ElectivesStudents are required to complete General Education elective courses as part of their program requirements. General Education elective course requirements are listed at the bottom of the progress report, which is found on the Student Portal under My Courses. The progress report indicates the level/semester in which the course must be taken. Students are responsible for adding General Education electives into their schedule for the designated semester. Eligible courses are posted each semester by the School of Interdisciplinary Studies on the College's elective website. For more information and to view the current elective course offerings, visit https://www.conestogac.on.ca/electives/diploma. Questions regarding General Education electives can be directed to the School of Interdisciplinary Studies: email@example.com
Process for resolution of student concerns
To resolve any concerns that may arise during a course, clinical or 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 Policies and Procedures page, and to follow the procedures outlined under the
"Academic Dispute Resolution and Appeal Procedure".
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 experience. 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 TrainingConestoga College is committed to establishing and maintaining a healthy and safe work and study environment. All students must achieve 100% on the WHMIS test in the first semester.
General safety considerations will be provided during the Orientation in the Cowan Health Sciences Centre or any other labs or training centres. 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 are incorporated within the learning outcomes of your program.
It is your responsibility to follow guidelines for safety once these have been taught and to ensure that you received 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 space or location.
Concerns Regarding Student Safety or the Safety and Care/Service for ClientsWIL 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 are 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.
A. Communication of General Concerns regarding Your Safety or The Safety and Care/Service for Clients
- 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.
- 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 Program 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
- 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
- Should students be involved in care/service situations where 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 will discuss this immediately with the WIL site and ensure that an incident report is completed. the faculty 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.
- 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 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.
While students are enrolled in the PSW-PN Bridge and Practical Nursing Program:
- 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.
- 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.
- The college does not assume responsibility for student performance while they work part time in a clinical agency.
- Students are not to wear the crest or name bar showing the Conestoga College logo or the Conestoga College student PN uniform.
- Students are advised that trying to maintain numerous hours in part-time employment may impact success in the full-time program.
- 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.
Conestoga has more than 400 awards, bursaries, scholarships and academic grants available to Conestoga students. These funds are made available through our partnerships with local businesses, industry leaders, and generous donors. To be considered for an award, you will need to complete the General Application form through your Student Portal. Notifications and instructions to complete the application are sent to all full-time students' email accounts. For more information, please visit Student Financial Services.
Academic Delivery Plan and College Hours
Academic Delivery Plan Fall 2022
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Conestoga has developed an academic delivery plan for the Fall 2022 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.
Back on campus
We look forward to continuing to welcome students back in person and on campus for the fall term. There are three ways in which programs will be delivered:
Hybrid: You will be required to attend in-person classes at your assigned campus. Most class hours will be delivered in person, with a few hours delivered remote/online.
On campus: You will be required to attend in-person classes at your assigned campus. All class hours will be delivered in person.
Remote: Remote programs will be delivered fully online. There will be no in-person classes.
Details regarding classes and delivery formats will be provided in your program schedule (timetable).
Full-time courses at Conestoga are typically delivered Monday to Saturday, 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. *
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:
- 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.
- 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
- Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
- 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).
- Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
- Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
- 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
Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances, such as brief illness, do arise during the term. As a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary or possible, we do not ask you to provide a doctor's note except in exceptional circumstances. If you are absent from a scheduled evaluation, you must:
A. Report the Absence on the Student Portal prior to scheduled class time: See the Student Responsibilities section above.
B. Make Alternative Evaluation Arrangements
i. Reach out to your professor to ask how the evaluation will be made up. Your professor will determine alternative evaluation arrangements as appropriate.
Program Handbook Revision Log
|Last Revised||By Whom|
|July 10, 2020||Beth Davidson|
|July 14, 2021||Beth Davidson|
|June 17, 2022||Beth Davidson|
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.