Practical Nursing

Practical Nursing

Work as part of a healthcare team to provide exceptional care and promote healthy lifestyles to the individuals and families you serve.

Start Date:
September & January
2 Years
Full-time (In-class)Part-time (Combined In-class/Online)
+Locations & Availability
September 2017 Cumberland Campus (classes at Amherst Learning Centre)  • Waitlist 2019New applications may be waitlisted until Fall 2019. Marconi Campus • Sydney  • Waitlist 2019New applications may be waitlisted until Fall 2019. Pictou Campus • Stellarton  • Waitlist 2018New applications may be waitlisted until Fall 2018. Waterfront Campus • Dartmouth  • Waitlist 2019New applications may be waitlisted until Fall 2019. Waterfront Campus/Online • Dartmouth  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}. January 2018 Lunenburg Campus • Bridgewater  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}. Strait Area Campus • Port Hawkesbury  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}. September 2018 Burridge Campus • Yarmouth  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}. Kingstec Campus • Kentville  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}. Truro Campus • Truro  • Waitlist New applications may be waitlisted until {0} 20{1}.

Program Overview

Do you feel comfortable with other people? Are you interested in the science of the human body and the art of caring for others? Do you think you would enjoy being part of a team of professionals dedicated to providing client-centred care? As a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) you have the ability to participate in promoting wellness and preventing illness with a diverse client population.

Every day, Practical Nurses work collaboratively with other health care professionals to provide exceptional care to their clients, as well as promote the benefits of healthy lifestyles to individuals, families, groups, communities and/or populations. Today's health care environments are changing at a fast rate and your success as a Practical Nurse depends upon your willingness to work as a team member, to be flexible and enjoy working in a variety of settings.

i Student Highlights are comments provided by students about their experiences. Students also share information that they think will help future students learn more about the program. Highlights reflect individual experiences (which can vary by student).

Student Highlights

  1. 1
    Why Take It"It takes a lot of work and dedication but in the end it will all be worth it because nursing is a very rewarding career."
  2. 2
    Highlight"Clinical placements in a community, hospital, maternity, mental health, and long term care environment."
  3. 3
    Good To Know"This program consists of a lot of at home studying and reading. Be prepared to study every day."

Admission Requirements

  • High School Graduation Diploma or equivalent, including Grade 12 Academic English and Mathematics and two additional Grade 12 Academic Sciences (Chemistry, Physics or Biology).
  • If you do not have the required academic credits, NSCC offers a variety of credit courses through the Academic & Career Connections program.

Program Requirements

  • A current, official Criminal Record check and Vulnerable Sector check are required to complete work placements in this program. A conviction or finding may impact your ability to complete program requirements. Information on this process will be provided at the beginning of your program.
  • Health & Human Services programs have additional requirements including immunizations and completion of first aid/CPR. You must submit documentation that you have completed these requirements at the beginning of your program. View additional Health & Human Services Program Requirements.

Choose NSCC

  • This program is available at campuses throughout the province and is recognized and approved by the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Nova Scotia (CLPNNS).
  • Learn from experienced instructors who have earned solid reputations in a wide variety of healthcare areas.
  • With low student-to-teacher ratios, you have access to your instructors, especially during the clinical experiences.
  • NSCC graduates enjoy a notably high rate of success on the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination (CPNRE) as well as an impressive rate of employment. Graduates can be confident in assuming their work duties because they have a firm foundation in the theory and practice of practical nursing and they know how the healthcare system works.
  • Continue your studies at university. This program includes courses that count towards a university degree. Find out more.

Employment Opportunities

  • Upon completion of the program, graduates qualify to write the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination. Successful completion of the examination qualifies you to apply for a license to practise as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). This license is recognized nationally.
  • Licensed Practical Nurses can assume a leadership role on the healthcare team. Graduates work in long-term care, acute care and community care.

Part Time Online/In-Class Option

  • This option is delivered through a combination of online, in-class skills labs and clinical placements. It involves approximately 20 hours/week of study and takes 3 years to complete.
  • In-class courses are held at Waterfront Campus, approximately 2-3 times a semester (often on weekends). No additional campus locations are available.
  • This program does not follow the regular academic schedule. Years 1 and 2 run from September to late July. Year 3 begins in September and ends in May.
  • Clinical placements will take place in the Halifax area.

Other Info

  • CLPNNs require a Criminal Record Check prior to licensing. A conviction may impact your ability to obtain a license.
  • Many employers in this sector require one or all of the following as part of the hiring process: current, official Criminal Record check, Vulnerable Sector check and/or Child Abuse Register search. A conviction or finding may impact your ability to secure employment.
  • Alternate Locations – The location for this program alternates and is not always offered at the same location each year. Check program locations for upcoming start dates.
  • Shift work is an integral part of this occupation. Physical demands include moving and lifting people, as well as spending long periods of time on your feet. Emotional demands include frequent stressful and occasional emergency situations.
  • Application of knowledge and skills during nursing Clinical Placements and Internships may take place in a variety of settings, including medical-surgical, geriatric, obstetrics, pediatrics, mental health, public health, community care and home care. Students are required to provide their own transportation to clinical sites and may be required to find accommodation during some portions of clinical placement.
  • Students are required to complete the program within four years. Pass mark for this program is 70%.
  • Graduates are eligible to write the Canadian Practical Nurses Registration Exam (CPNRE) and work as a Graduate Practical Nurse upon successful completion of the NSCC program. Application and fees must be submitted to the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Nova Scotia (CLPNNS) to write the examination and to receive a temporary graduate Practical Nursing License.
  • College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Nova Scotia (CLPNNS) provides information to candidates about the skills and abilities one would be required to have to work as an LPN in Canada.

Courses May Include

Course descriptions
Code Course
ANAP 1011   Anatomy and Physiology
CONC 1200   Dementia: Understanding the Journey
GDEV 1010   Growth and Development
PRNS 1002   Nursing Skills I
PRNS 1020   Introduction to Nursing Profession
PRNS 1024   Interprofessional Communication
PRNS 1050   Nursing Clinical I
PRNS 2002   Nursing Skills II
PRNS 2003   Pharmacology/Administration of Medications
PRNS 2004   Health Assessment of the Adult
PRNS 2011   Alterations in the Health of Adults
PRNS 2014   Oncology Nursing and Pallative Care
PRNS 2017   Maternal Child Nursing
PRNS 2018   Health Promotion and Community Nursing
PRNS 2022   Mental Health Nursing
PRNS 2050   Nursing Clinical II
PRNS 2055   Nursing Clinical III
PRNS 2062   Clinical Intercession Preceptorship
PRNS 3020   Professional Practice
PRNS 3055   Family and Community Clinical
PRNS 3060   Pharmacology Clinical
PRNS 4052   Nursing Clinical IV
PRNS 4058   Mental Health Clinical
PRNS 4060   Internship
SAFE 1000   Introduction to WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems)
SAFE 1001   Introduction to NS OH&S Act

Additional Graduation Requirements

Immunization form Completion
Portfolio Development
Standard First Aid, CPR Level C

Next Steps

  1. 1

    Visit NSCC

    Visit NSCC » Campus Tour
  2. 2

    Application Process

    Who Can ApplyHow to Apply
  3. 3
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