Jul 29, 2021  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]


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303 Stark Hall
Nursing website
Email: nursing@winona.edu
Jane Foote, Chairperson


Note: All nursing faculty are registered nurses.

Megan Anibas, Assistant Professor; BS, MS, Winona State University; 2013 -
Cynthia Bork, Associate Professor; BS, College of Saint Teresa; MS, Winona State University; EdD, St. Mary’s University of Minnesota; 1993 -
Annette Caflisch, Assistant Professor; BSN, Graceland College; MSN, University of Phoenix; EdD, Argosy University; 2010 -
Susan Davies, Professor; BSc, University of Southhampton (UK); MSc, University of Surrey (UK); PhD, University of Sheffield (UK); 2009 -
Amber Fiedler, Assistant Professor; BSN, Augsburg University; MS, Minnesota State University of Mankato; DNP, Augsburg University; 2013 -
Jane Foote, Associate Professor; BSN, St. Olaf College; MSN, University of Cincinnati; EdD, University of St. Thomas; 2013 -
Diane McNally Forsyth, Professor; BS, Winona State University; MS, University of Wisconsin-Madison; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2004 -
Maureen Gerson, Assistant Professor; BS, Winona State University; MS, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; DNP, Minnesota State University-Moorhead; 2010 -
Linda Heath, Professor; BSN, MSN, University of Wisconsin; PhD, Walden University; 1993 -
Terese Hemmingsen, Assistant Professor; BSN, MSN, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire; DNP, Winona State University; 2013 -
Sandra Herron, Associate Professor; BS, MS, Winona State University; DNP, Metropolitan State University-St. Paul; 2016 -
Carole Jenson, Assistant Professor; BS, MS, DNP, Winona State University; 2007 -
Cynthia Jones, Assistant Professor; BSN, MSN, DNP, Winona State University; 2016 -
Amy Koehler, Associate Professor; BS, MS, Winona State University; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2006 -
Sara Laker, Associate Professor; BA, Sheffield Hallam University; PhD, University of Sheffield; 2014 -
Kathryn Lammers, Professor; BS, Kent State University; MSN, Winona State University; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2001 -
Kimberly Langer, Assistant Professor; BS, University of Wisconsin-River Falls; BSN, Drexel University; MS, University of Pennsylvania; DNP, Winona State University; 2013 -
Emily Lindee, Assistant Professor; BAN, Augustana University; MAN, Augsburg College; 2014 -
Deborah Mangan-Danckwart, Associate Professor; BSN, College of Saint Teresa; MS, DNP, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; 2008 -
William McBreen, Administrator; BSN, Mount Marty College; MSN, University of Nebraska Medical Center; PhD, University of Texas; 2000 -
Carrie McNamer, Assistant Professor; BS, Winona State University; MS, Viterbo University; 2001 -
Sonja Meiers, Professor; BS, College of Saint Teresa; MS, Winona State University; PhD, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; 2009 -
Catherine Nosek, Professor; BS, MS, University of Wisconsin; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison; 1997 -
Sandra Paddock, Associate Professor; AD, Inver Hills Community College; BSN, MSN, FNP (Post Graduate Certificate), Winona State University; DNP, St. Catherine University; 2015 -
Julie Ponto, Professor; BSN, University of Minnesota; MS, University of California-San Francisco; PhD, University of Utah; 2004 -
Jenny Prochnow, Assistant Professor; BSN, University of Phoenix; MBA/MSN, University of Phoenix; DNP, Winona State University; 2014 -
Sarah Rudie, Assistant Professor; BS, Winona State University; MS, Northern Illinois University; 2008 -
Heather Schmidtknecht, Assistant Professor; BS, MS, Winona State University; 2013 -
Lisa Schnepper, Professor; BS, Winona State University; MSN, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2005 -
Linda Smith, Assistant Professor; BS, Moorhead State University; MPH, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; 1999 -
Jami Starling, Assistant Professor; BSN, University of Virginia; MSN, Winona State University; 2014 -
David Steele, Assistant Professor; BSN, MSN, Metropolitan State University; DNP, Winona State University; 2017 -
Susan Sullivan, Associate Professor; BS, MS, DNP, Winona State University; 2004 -
Jennifer Timm, Assistant Professor; BS, MS, Winona State University; 2014 -
Mieca Valen, Associate Professor; BA, Augustana College; MS, South Dakota State University; DNP, Metropolitan State University; 2005 -
Dawn VanRuler, Assistant Professor; BA, University of Minnesota; BSN, Creighton University; MS, South Dakota State University; 2017 -
Amanda Winrow, Associate Professor; BSN, South Dakota State University; MSN, University of Kansas; DNP, Minnesota State University-Mankato; 2012 -
Shelley Wolfe, Assistant Professor; BSN, University of Iowa; MS, Winona State University; 2015 -
Nancee Wozney, Associate Professor; BS, South Dakota State University; MS, Winona State University; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; 2015 -
Susan Zeller, Associate Professor; BA, Luther College; MSN, University of Kentucky; DNP, University of Minnesota; 2012 -

Program Overview

The nursing major offers a liberal education with a concentration of study in nursing. The curriculum builds on a broad base of general education program courses. In addition to liberal learning and global perspectives, students develop clinical, scientific, decision-making, and caring skills in nursing courses that combine the theory and the practice of nursing. Graduates are prepared to practice in all health care settings, work with clients of all ages, and pursue graduate study.

The Baccalaureate nursing major is structured in two programs:

  • Pre-Licensure Nursing Program: For students seeking professional preparation at the level of BS degree (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) and registered nurse licensure. This program includes two years of sequenced upper division nursing coursework. Most students complete the major on a full time basis of study; part-time study is possible.
  • RN to BS Completion for those who already hold a registered nurse license and are now seeking a BS degree. This program includes sequenced upper-division nursing courses that can be completed in one to two years after all other degree requirements are completed. The RN to BS Completion program can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. at multiple sites. The Department of Nursing also offers an adapted RN-to-Graduate Professional Pathway for registered nurses whose goal is to earn a graduate degree in nursing.

Accreditation and Approval

The Nursing Programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001 (202.463.6930). The undergraduate Nursing Program is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing. Graduates are eligible to write the professional nurse licensure examination (NCLEX-RN) and apply for Public Health Nurse Registration. Graduates can apply to the Board of Teaching for a school nurse license in Minnesota after they obtain the RN license and Public Health Nurse Registration.


For general information about Winona State University admission procedures and requirements, see Admissions . A separate application to the upper-division nursing program is required.

Admission to the Baccalaureate: Nursing Program: Pre-Licensure

Students may apply to the nursing program in the semester prior to the start of upper-division nursing coursework. Students should check the Department of Nursing website for the application due date each semester. Students will be notified of their admission to the nursing major the semester in which they apply. Nursing advisors are available to assist in the process. Students will be admitted to the Pre-Licensure option twice per year on the Winona campus and once per year on the Rochester campus. All applications to the nursing program are processed through the Winona campus.

When students apply to the Pre-Licensure option program, they must meet the following criteria:

  1. The WSU admissions process must be completed before the application deadline for the nursing major.
  2. Students must declare a nursing candidate major (Preferred [PNUG] or General [PNGE]) prior to applying for admission to the nursing major.
  3. They must complete 45 credits of college work with a cumulative GPA of 3.30 or better when they apply as reflected on the Degree Audit Reporting System (DARS); this GPA is recalculated if a course is being repeated in the current semester.
  4. Applicants must have completed at least four natural science prerequisite courses, at least three social science prerequisite courses, college English, and statistics. Natural and social science prerequisites must have been completed within the last 5 years. English and statistics must have been completed within the last 10 years. All prerequisites must have been completed with a grade of “C” or better. 
  5. Students must show a plan for completing remaining prerequisite courses prior to starting nursing coursework.
  6. The ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (ATI TEAS) must be completed during the semester in which the student applies. The ATI TEAS may only be taken once.
  7. A completed admission application must be submitted for a given semester by the due date. No late applications will be accepted.
  8. Students who transfer from another nursing program must submit to the Department of Nursing a letter from the academic head of their previous program stating that the student is eligible for continuation or readmission to that program. Placement in the major will then be determined based on background and space available.
  9. Students must submit transcripts for all college credits attempted, including CNA courses completed for college credit at community or technical colleges. All transcripts must be reflected on the DARS as of the application due date.

The admission decision is based on completion of the application by the due date and a sufficiently high Admission Score for that applicant pool (see Admission Score section below).

Additional Criteria

When students begin nursing coursework in the major, they must show that they have satisfied the following requirements:

1.   All of the following prerequisites completed with a grade of “C” or better. Natural and social science prerequisites must have been completed within the last 5 years. English and statistics must have been completed within the last 10 years.

Natural Science Prerequisites:
BIOL 209 - Microbiology  (3 S.H.)
BIOL 211 - Anatomy and Physiology I  (4 S.H.) AND BIOL 212 - Anatomy and Physiology II  (4 S.H.)

CHEM 210 - General, Organic, and Biochemistry  (5 S.H.) OR
CHEM 212 - Principles of Chemistry I  (4 S.H.) AND CHEM 213 - Principles of Chemistry II  (4 S.H.)

✽ BIOL 206 - Normal Nutrition  (3 S.H.) OR ✽ HERS 205 - Nutrition for Lifetime Wellness  (3 S.H.)


Social Science Prerequisites:
PSY 210 - Introduction to Psychological Science  (3 S.H.)
PSY 250 - Developmental Psychology  (3 S.H.)
SOC 150 - Introduction to Sociology  (3 S.H.)
SOC 212 - Sociology of Families  (3 S.H.)


Other Prerequisites:
ENG 111 - College Reading and Writing  (4 S.H.) (or equivalent)

  (3 S.H.) (or equivalent) OR
  (3 S.H.) (or equivalent) OR
  (3 S.H.) (or equivalent) OR
◆ PSY 231 - Statistics  (3 S.H.) OR
(Note: STAT 301, STAT 305, & PSY 231 do not fulfill mathematics requirement for the General Education Program’s GOAL 4.)

2.   Students are required to complete documentation of the mandatory health requirements in the Passport system by the published due date.
3.   Background study process completed by the published due date.
4.   Current CPR for One & Two Person, Infant, Child and Adult (only American Heart Association or American Red Cross Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers) certification obtained by the published due date.
5.   Active status on a Nursing Assistant Registry within the United States obtained by the published due date.
6.   The Functional Abilities Statements by Healthcare Provider and by student must be completed and submitted through the Passport system upon entry to the nursing program.

Preferred Admission Contract (Preferred [PNUG])

For all eligible students who want to graduate in four academic years, Winona State University facilitates the process of obtaining the necessary courses as required by the University, the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, and the Department of Nursing. This Preferred Admission Contract applies to new entering first-year students who begin at Winona State University; students who earn college credits during high school years meet this requirement. Students who meet the following requirements have priority in admission to the upper-division nursing major.

To participate in the Preferred Admission Contract, a new entering first-year student must have an ACT score of 24 or higher or an SAT of 1180 or higher and, during the first two weeks of his or her first semester classes, the student must complete the Preferred Admission Contract application form and officially declare a Baccalaureate Nursing major; Pre-Licensure option. All participating students must:

  1. Be qualified to begin college-level (i.e., non-remedial) science, mathematics/ statistics, and English courses as required by the nursing major. If the student takes MATH 50 - Intermediate Algebra  or ENG 99 - Introduction to College Writing , this contract is void. All 100-level university courses are acceptable and not considered remedial.
  2. Meet with a WSU nursing advisor every semester to develop a plan for courses.
  3. Meet any University or program GPA and/or grade requirements as stipulated in the University catalog and/or schedule of classes.
  4. Successfully complete an average course load of 15 credits each fall and spring semester (45 credits required at the time of application to the nursing major).
  5. Complete all prerequisite courses with a grade of “C” or better at WSU; the participating student cannot withdraw (“W”) or repeat any of these prerequisite courses.
  6. Apply for admission to the nursing major after their third semester of coursework at Winona State University.
  7. Earn a cumulative GPA of 3.50 at the time of first application to the nursing major. The GPA is not rounded up. Students may apply to the nursing program only once under the preferred admission status.
  8. Earn an ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (ATI TEAS) score of proficient, advanced or exemplary. The ATI TEAS test should be taken the semester of application to the nursing program. The ATI TEAS may be taken only once.

Students who meet the preceding requirements of the Preferred Admission Contract and the admission criteria will have first priority for admission to the nursing major. The Preferred Admission Contract is not a guarantee of admission. The Preferred Admission Contract is valid for the Pre-Licensure option Nursing major which is declared upon admission and not changed in major. Failure to meet any of the above conditions in this section of the catalog voids the Preferred Admission Contract. Once the contract is void, the student is not eligible for reinstatement of the contract.

General Admission Applicant (General [PNGE])

The General Admission Application process is designed for those students who do not have a Preferred Admission Contract; this includes eligible transfer students who began after high school at Rochester Community & Technical College, WSU students who have changed their major to nursing, and new entering first-year students who wish to extend the education process to five years or more. To qualify for the general admission process, the student must:

  • Have a cumulative GPA of 3.30 at the time of application to the nursing program.
  • Have completed 45 credits,
  • Have completed all nursing prerequisites with a letter grade of “C” or better (Natural and social science prerequisites must have been completed within the last 5 years. English and statistics must have been completed within the last 10 years.), and
  • Complete the ATI TEAS exam at the time of application. (The ATI TEAS may be taken only once and should be taken the semester of application to the nursing program.)

Admission Score

The admission scoring applies to all applicants. Points are awarded in each category with the approximate weighting of the components as follows in sequential order: (a) 60%, (b) 20%, (c) 15%, and (d) 5%. Applicants are rank ordered by Admission Score. An Admission Score is calculated based on the following components:

  1. GPA based on grades in the three most recent natural science prerequisite courses, not including nutrition, the three most recent social science prerequisite courses, college English, and statistics. All prerequisites must be completed with a grade of “C” or better. Natural science and social science courses must have been completed within the last 5 years. English and statistics must have been completed within the last 10 years.
  2. Score on the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (ATI TEAS).
  3. Starting college coursework at Winona State University or Rochester Community and Technical College.
  4. All prerequisite courses taken only once; no repeating or withdrawing with a “W.”

Admission to the RN-BS Completion Program

Admission to the RN-BS Completion Program is a 2-step process:

Step 1: Complete the WSU admissions process
  • Necessary information for application is available on the WSU admissions transfer website.
  • The major program code is BS NRNA.
  • Students need to identify the site they wish to attend: La Crescent, Red Wing, or Rochester.
  • After receiving the degree audit report (DARS) from the Office of Admissions, arrange an appointment with your designated nursing advisor. The nursing advisors are assigned by the undergraduate administrative assistant on the Rochester campus. (email: rn-bscompletion@winona.edu)
Step 2: RN-BS Completion Application
  • The RN-BS Completion Program applications are open until program fills. Early application encouraged.
Other Admission Information
  • Students have the option to select the full-time or one of three part-time plans of study for completing the nursing courses.
  • Up to 80 credits can be transferred in from a two year college. The 80 credits are lower college level credits. These 80 credits will be applied towards the 120 credits required. Students having less than 80 transferable credits will have additional credits to complete. No remedial credits can be counted.
  • Additional degree requirements beyond nursing courses include a possible 10 credits of upper level electives and a required statistics course. A three credit Statistics course needs to be completed prior to taking ◆ NURS 375 - Research and Evidence-Based Nursing Practice . Completion of upper-division coursework prior to starting the RN-BS Completion Program is recommended.
  • Students must indicate RN license status or Associate degree program completion date prior to taking the required RN-BS Completion Program courses.
  • A DARS cumulative GPA of 2.75 is required for admission into the RN-BS Completion Program. The admission GPA may be calculated on the most recent five years of college coursework or the last 50 semester hours of credits of college work.
  • If a prospective student has a diploma in Nursing that qualified them for RN licensure, the student should contact the department Chair for potential assessment of prior learning.
  • Associate nursing degrees received before 1985 will be reviewed on an individual basis.

Admission to the RN-to-Graduate Pathway

The RN-to-Graduate Pathway is designed for highly motivated nurses who graduated with an associate degree in nursing or a diploma in nursing, who have nursing experience, and whose goal is to earn a graduate degree in nursing. Students needs to be admitted into the RN-BS Completion Program to be considered for the RN-to-Graduate Pathway Program. Selected courses meet requirements for the undergraduate and graduate programs. Students must meet additional admission requirements and need to consult the WSU Graduate Catalog. Separate formal application to the graduate program is required. Acceptance in a focus area is not guaranteed. Further information can be obtained from the Department of Nursing at WSU-Rochester.

MN State Statewide Nursing Articulation Agreement 

The following standards are consistent with the MN State Articulation Agreement among nursing programs in Minnesota:

A. Registered Nursing (RN) Baccalaureate Completion (Associate in Science Nursing to Baccalaureate Nursing) (Requires RN Licensure)
  1. The student must have current unencumbered authorization to practice as a Registered Nurse (RN) within the United States of America.

  2. The student must have graduated from an associate in science (AS) degree in nursing program approved by a State Board of Nursing and based in a regionally accredited college or university.

  3. The student must have been awarded the associate in science (AS) degree in nursing with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher and a minimum grade of “C” in each nursing course.

  4. All courses completed to fulfill requirements for the associate in science (AS) degree in nursing program must transfer and count toward completion of a baccalaureate degree nursing program.

Academic Policies, Procedures, Requirements, and Resources


Students are expected to provide their own transportation to all site-based experiences. The student must assume incidental costs including housing, uniforms, name badge, and stethoscope. Students will be charged fees for required state background checks and professional liability insurance through Winona State University. Students must pay fees directly for federal background checks.

Students are responsible for costs of textbooks, tuition and course fees. Initial book purchases for Pre-Licensure students cost approximately $1,000, but most of these books will be used throughout the program and may include electronic versions downloaded to the student’s laptop and/or iPad. Additional costs associated with upper level courses may be charged.

Costs that students incur to maintain their health (including but not limited to throat cultures, treatments, blood test, x-rays, doctor visits) are the sole responsibility of the student. Clinical agencies used for site-based experiences require a physical examination, professional liability insurance, health insurance, evidence of freedom from tuberculosis (through yearly Mantoux [skin test], blood test, or chest x-ray), MMR vaccine or proof of rubella immunity by blood titer, hepatitis B vaccine, influenza vaccine, and CPR certification. Other requirements may be imposed as dictated by individual agencies. Students are required to complete documentation of the mandatory health requirements in the Passport system.

Undergraduate students admitted to the nursing major in fall 2012 or later pay supplemental tuition (sometimes called tuition differential) of approximately $35 per credit in fall 2012 (subject to change).  The fee is designated for services that directly impact students. Student representatives provide annual input to the Dean about the use of differential tuition funds through Nursing Student Advisory Council meetings on the Rochester and Winona campuses.


A number of scholarships are available for nursing majors. For the most part, scholarships are awarded on the basis of financial need and/or academic achievement. It may be required to show proof of financial need through completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Contact the WSU Foundation for more information. Scholarships are usually awarded in the spring for the following school year.

Individual benefactors, affiliating hospitals, and professional and community organizations also provide scholarships. Students are encouraged to contact agencies (hospitals, nursing homes, American Legion, VFW, etc.) in their hometowns with regard to possible nursing scholarships. 

Professional-Related Organizations

  • Minnesota Student Nurses Association (MSNA) for Pre-Licensure students: The WSU MSNA is a member of the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA). This organization focuses on nursing student issues and problems. MSNA meets monthly and has a nursing faculty advisor. Information about meetings and contacts is available in the Department of Nursing at the Rochester and Winona campuses. Membership is available at the local, state, and national levels. Pre-nursing students are welcome and encouraged to join this pre-professional organization for nursing students.
  • Undergraduate Pre-Licensure Nursing Club is designed to serve as a social support system for those majoring in nursing and to promote community service activities and fundraising efforts by nursing students. Membership includes any pre-nursing students and junior and senior nursing students.

  • Undergraduate RN-BS Nursing Club is designed to build networks and friendships within the nursing class, provide support and advocacy for nursing students, and promote sharing of scholarly information/research.

  • Kappa Mu Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau: The Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing recognizes superior achievement, helps its members develop leadership qualities and high professional standards, and encourages creative work. Membership in the Kappa Mu Chapter is by invitation and includes students and nurses in southeast Minnesota. 

Honors in Nursing Program

This program provides eligible students who have been admitted to the nursing major an opportunity to participate in scholarly activity above and beyond the normal course of study within the nursing program. Students in the Honors in Nursing Program will work closely with faculty advisors to develop a research or evidence-based scholarly project to help students achieve their personal learning goals. Students interested in the Honors in Nursing Program should contact their nursing faculty advisor.

Standards within the Nursing Major

To satisfy the academic standards of the nursing major, students must:

  1. Achieve a grade of “C” or above in each required nursing course. Grades less than “C” constitute a failure in the nursing major. Students must adhere to the University standards for retention and scholarship.
  2. Follow the ethical responsibilities as outlined in the Handbook for Undergraduate Nursing Students.
  3. Complete the forms for the background studies conducted by the licensing division of the Department of Human Services on behalf of the Department of Health. Under the 1995 amendments to the Vulnerable Adults Act, individuals who provide direct contact service to patients or residents in select health facilities must undergo a background check.

“Minnesota law requires that any person who provides services that involve direct contact with patients and residents at a health care facility licensed by the Minnesota Department of Health have a background study conducted by the state. An individual who is disqualified from having direct patient contact as a result of the background study, and whose disqualification is not set aside by the Commissioner of Health, will not be permitted to participate in a clinical placement in a Minnesota licensed health care facility. Failure to participate in a clinical placement required by the academic program could result in ineligibility to qualify for a degree in this program.”

  1. Meet clinical agency requirements when enrolled in courses with site-based experiences: evidence of freedom from tuberculosis submitted yearly; evidence of rubella immunity, documentation that immunizations for polio, diphtheria tetanus and pertussis (DTaP), measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) and Hepatitis B are current; documentation of annual flu shot, evidence of chicken pox or record of immunization, documentation of personal health insurance, health history and physical examination on file with student’s health care provider, current CPR certification (American Heart Association or American Red Cross Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers); and professional liability insurance. Students will be billed by Winona State University during each semester for professional liability insurance coverage.
  2. Maintain a level of health that does not interfere with the student’s ability to function adequately and safely in the nursing major and possess essential functional abilities in order to provide safe and effective client care as reflected in the Functional Abilities Essential for Progression in the WSU Nursing Program. The student is expected to seek appropriate professional assistance as needed. The faculty may recommend the need for assistance, a leave of absence, and/ or withdrawal from the program. Verification from an appropriate health care provider of adequate health to function adequately and safely may be required.  If a student believes that he or she cannot meet one or more of the standards without accommodations, the nursing program in conjunction with WSU Access Services for Students with Disabilities must determine, on an individual basis, whether a reasonable accommodation can be made.
Functional Abilities Essential for Progression in the WSU Nursing Program
Functional Abilities
Examples of Required Activities
Motor Abilities
  • Physical abilities and mobility sufficient to execute gross motor skills, physical endurance, and strength to provide patient care.
  • Carries out patient care procedures such as assisting with ambulation of clients, administering CPR, assisting with turning and lifting patients, providing care in confined spaces such as treatment room or operating suite.
Manual Dexterity
  • Fine motor skills sufficient for providing safe nursing care.
  • Handles small equipment such as insulin syringe and administers medications by all routes, performs tracheotomy suctioning, inserts urinary catheter.
Perceptual/Sensory Ability
  • Sensory/perceptual ability to monitor and assess clients.
  • Hears alarms, auscultatory sounds, cries for help, etc.
  • Reads calibrations on 1 cc syringe, assesses color (cyanosis, pallor, etc.)
  • Feels pulses, assesses temperature, palpates veins, etc.
  • Detects smoke or noxious odor, etc.
  • Ability to relate to colleagues, staff and patients with honesty, integrity and nondiscrimination.
  • Capacity for development of mature, sensitive and effective therapeutic relationships.
  • Interpersonal abilities sufficient for interaction with individuals, families and groups from various social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds.
  • Ability to work constructively in stressful and changing environments with the ability to modify behavior in response to constructive criticism.
  • Capacity to demonstrate ethical behavior, including adherence to the professional nursing and student honor codes.
  • Establishes rapport with patients/clients and colleagues.
  • Works effectively with teams and workgroups.
  • Remains calm in an emergency situation.
  • Demonstrates the exercise of good judgment and prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of clients.
  • Adapts rapidly to environmental changes and multiple task demands.
  • Maintains behavioral decorum in stressful situations.

Safe environment
for patients, families

  • Ability to accurately identify patients.
  • Ability to effectively communicate with other caregivers.
  • Ability to administer medications safely and accurately.
  • Ability to operate equipment safely in the clinical area.
  • Ability to recognize and minimize hazards that could increase healthcare associated infections.
  • Ability to recognize and minimize accident hazards in the clinical setting including hazards that contribute to patient, family and co-worker falls.
  • Prioritizes tasks to ensure patient safety and standard of care.
  • Maintains adequate concentration and attention in patient care settings.
  • Seeks assistance when clinical situation requires a higher level or expertise/experience.
  • Responds to monitor alarms, emergency signals, call bells from patients, and orders in a rapid and effective manner.
  • Ability to communicate in English with accuracy, clarity and efficiency with patients, their families and other members of the health care team (including spoken and non-verbal communication, such as interpretation of facial expressions, affect and body language).
  • Required communication abilities, including speech, hearing, reading, writing, language skills and computer literacy.
  • Gives verbal directions to or follows verbal directions from other members of the healthcare team and participates in health care team discussions of patient care.
  • Elicits and records information about health history, current health state and responses to treatment from patients or family members.
  • Conveys information to clients and others as necessary to teach, direct and counsel individuals in an accurate, effective and timely manner.
  • Establishes and maintain effective working relations with patients and co-workers.
  • Recognizes and reports critical patient information to other caregivers.

Cognitive/Conceptual/ Quantitative Abilities

  • Ability to read and understand written documents in English and solve problems involving measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis and synthesis.
  • Ability to gather data, to develop a plan of action, establish priorities and monitor and evaluate treatment plans and modalities.
  • Ability to comprehend three-dimensional and spatial relationships.
  • Ability to react effectively in an emergency situation.
  • Calculates appropriate medication dosage given specific patient parameters.
  • Analyzes and synthesizes data and develops an appropriate plan of care.
  • Collects data, prioritizes needs and anticipates reactions.
  • Comprehends spatial relationships adequately to properly administer injections, start intravenous lines or assess wounds of varying depths.
  • Recognizes an emergency situation and responds effectively to safeguard the patient and other caregivers.
  • Transfers knowledge from one situation to another.
  • Accurately processes information on medication container, in physicians’ orders, and monitors equipment calibrations, printed documents, flow sheets, graphic sheets, medication administration records, other medical records and policy and procedure manuals.

work habits

  • Ability to adhere to WSU policies, procedures and requirements as described in the Student Nurse Handbook, college catalog and student handbook and course syllabus.
  • Ability to complete classroom and clinical assignments and submit assignments at the required time.
  • Ability to adhere to classroom and clinical schedules.
  • Attends class and clinical assignments punctually.
  • Reads, understands and adheres to all policies related to classroom and clinical experiences.
  • Contacts instructor in advance of any absence or late arrival.
  • Understands and completes classroom and clinical assignments by due date and time.

Professional Retention and Progression Policies

  1. No nursing course may be repeated more than once due to withdrawal or grade less than “C.” (A grade of “D” or less is considered to be a failing grade.) No theory exams can be retaken. Students who fail or withdraw from a course (theory and/or clinical) will be able to continue part-time in the nursing major if they have satisfied progression policies and as space allows.
  2. Students will not be allowed to continue in the nursing major if they have failed or withdrawn for academic reasons from the same nursing course more than once or from two different nursing courses over more than one semester.
  3. Students are expected to adhere to ethical and professional behaviors as defined in the Undergraduate and RN-BS Nursing Student Handbooks and university policies.  Breach of ethical and/or professional standards may result in reduction of grade, failure of the course, dismissal from the nursing program, and/or dismissal from Winona State University. Decisions regarding sanctions for unprofessional conduct or academic integrity affecting course grades will be made by the course faculty. Sanctions involving progression or dismissal from the nursing program will be made by the Progression Committee in consultation with the teaching faculty. Decisions regarding University sanctions will be referred to the University Office of Student Conduct and Citizenship.
  4. Students are expected to provide safe nursing care as outlined in the course outline and clinical performance rubrics. Failure to meet the expectations of safe clinical practice may result in failure of the course and/or dismissal from the nursing program.
  5. Processes for decisions regarding progression within the program are described in the Undergraduate and RN-BS Nursing Student Handbooks and in university policies.
  6. Students who once were admitted to the nursing major, completed at least one nursing course, but currently are not enrolled in the nursing major have one year from the date of withdrawal/failure to file a progression plan approved by the nursing advisor (for Pre-Licensure option students) or the RN to BS Completion Coordinator (for RN to BS Completion students). After one year, the student must reapply for admission to the nursing major.
  7. For Pre-Licensure option students: All students are assigned to a clinical site-based experience sequence. If a student varies from the assigned plan, space in clinical courses cannot be assured.
  8. All part-time students must file a written progression plan that has been approved by the nursing advisor or the RN to BS Completion Coordinator (for RN to BS Completion students) and the Progression Committee.
  9. Students who change from full-time to part-time status in the nursing major for academic or personal reasons must file a progression plan developed with the assistance of their academic advisor and must obtain plan approval from the department chairperson and designated faculty member (for Pre-Licensure option students) or the RN to BS Completion Coordinator (for RN to BS Completion students). This plan is based on space availability in clinical courses and completion of prerequisites for courses.
  10. The grade of “Incomplete” (I) may be granted at the discretion of the course instructor in special cases where, for reasons beyond the student’s control, some course assignments were not finished but the student was passing all other aspects (refer to the Academic Policies & University Requirements ). For courses that are prerequisite to subsequent nursing courses, the “Incomplete” must be resolved by the second week of the new semester. 

Credit by Examination

A student may receive credit by examination and/or demonstration of competence for courses or parts of courses in the Pre-Licensure option and the RN to BS Completion program. Faculty permission is needed for some course challenges.

Graduation Requirements

Graduation requirements include completion of WSU General Education Program requirements or their equivalent for transfer students as well as all nursing major course requirements. For the RN to BS Completion nursing major, WSU counts up to 80 transferable credits from accredited two- or four-year institutions towards a student’s four-year Bachelor degree. With departmental approval, credits are also accepted from certain other schools and programs.

A total of 120 semester credits is needed to graduate with a baccalaureate degree from WSU. At least 40 of the 120 credits must be at the 300- and 400-level. Also, to comply with the residence rule, at least 30 of the 120 credits needed for graduation must be earned at WSU. Thirty credits in nursing in the RN to BS Completion program fulfill the majority of the upper-division credit requirement and complete the residence credit requirement. Students will need 10 additional 300- or 400-level credits (WSU or transfer credits). WSU policy requires students to be enrolled at WSU their final semester (the term in which they earn their degree).

A formal application for graduation must be submitted after registering for the final term of classes - no later than the mid-term date of the graduating term. For a checklist of the University’s graduation requirements, see the Academic Policies & University Requirements .


Withdrawal from a nursing course and/or the University must be completed according to WSU guidelines (see Academic Policies & University Requirements ).

Obtaining Licensure as a Registered Nurse

After graduation, Pre-Licensure option Baccalaureate Nursing graduates must pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in order to obtain a Registered Nurse (RN) license. Students may apply for licensure and take the NCLEX-RN in the state of their choice. Contact information for all state boards of nursing can be obtained from the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

General Education Intensive Requirements

Students may use intensive courses to satisfy both General Education Program (GEP)  and major requirements. Intensive courses will usually be in the student’s major or minor program. The following are offered as GEP intensive courses in the Nursing Department:


Oral ()
Math/Critical Analysis (◆)
Writing (△)

Intensive courses that can be used to satisfy major/minor requirements are identified in the lists of required courses and electives.


    Bachelor of Science

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