College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Linda K. Young, Dean and Educational Administrator (Nursing 103)
Debra Jansen, Associate Dean (Nursing 103/215)
The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire College of Nursing and Health Sciences educates nurses at the baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral levels. We offer various options for earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Our traditional pre-licensure undergraduate program is taught both at our main campus in Eau Claire and at our distance education site in Marshfield, Wisconsin, with the support of Marshfield Clinic Health System. We offer a BSN Completion program for registered nurses with associate degrees or diplomas in nursing interested in earning a BSN degree. At the graduate level we offer the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.
Mission Statement of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Building on a foundation of excellence, liberal education, and inclusivity, the College of Nursing and Health Sciences fosters the transformation of individuals at the undergraduate and graduate levels into leaders in professional nursing practice, education, and scholarship. High-impact educational experiences, scholarship, and service to our communities enhance the personal and professional growth of students and faculty while promoting life-long learning.
The nursing programs are approved by the Wisconsin State Board of Nursing. The baccalaureate and master’s programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, (202) 887-6791, through December 31, 2021. The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program is accredited by CCNE through December 31, 2026.
The nursing programs are oriented toward the belief that a broad liberal education is an essential foundation for the preparation of professionals. Through the biological and social sciences, the humanities, and the nursing science courses, the concepts of humanity, health, environment, and nursing are interwoven in a curriculum that clinically addresses nursing across the lifespan of health-care recipients.
In addition to the Eau Claire campus, the nursing program of study is available in Marshfield, Wisconsin in cooperation and with the support of Marshfield Clinic Health System. Persons interested in further information about the Marshfield Site should contact the College of Nursing and Health Sciences Marshfield Site Director.
Program/Student Learning Outcomes
Students graduating from UW-Eau Claire with the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree demonstrate accomplishment of the AACN Baccalaureate Essentials* through:
- Integration of liberal and nursing education, with particular distinction in:
- leading change in complex health care environments.
- Organizational and systems leadership for patient safety and quality care, with particular distinction in:
- developing effective working relationships for quality improvement and optimizing patient care outcomes.
- Scholarship for evidence-based practice, with particular distinction in:
- providing leadership in the synthesis and application of evidence with integration into changing standards of care.
- Information management and application of patient care technology.
- Understanding of health care policy, finance and regulatory environments, with particular distinction in:
- advocacy for individuals, families, and communities.
- Interprofessional communication and collaboration for improving patient health outcomes, with particular distinction in:
- delivery of evidence-based, patient-centered care;
- coordination of care across settings and through the health-illness trajectory.
- Clinical prevention and population health for optimizing health, with particular distinction in:
- analysis of population health needs, determinants, and resources, and development of action strategies.
- Professionalism and professional values, with particular distinction in:
- ethical practice, social responsibility, a commitment to social justice, and global citizenship;
- delivery of culturally competent care within diverse settings and/or populations.
- Beginning competence in baccalaureate generalist nursing practice, with particular distinction in:
- holistic, relationship-based care incorporating therapeutic use of self;
- integration of nursing concepts, human responses, and safe and competent nursing care;
- use of nursing process to effect highest quality health outcomes.
*The Essentials of Baccalaureate Education for Professional Nursing Practice, AACN, 2008
Nursing is a professional discipline, and students enrolled in the nursing program must anticipate some additional costs that are directly related to the nursing program. These include, for example, uniforms, nursing textbooks, health requirements, personal health insurance, background checks, application and course fees, some clinical equipment (e.g., stethoscope, skills laboratory supplies), and transportation associated with clinical experiences. Note that textbook costs can be high, particularly in the early nursing courses; however, many of the books continue to be utilized in subsequent semesters. Additionally, admitted students should have wireless laptop access (with webcam and microphone, not a Chromebook, tablet, iPad, or Surface Pro due to software compatibility issues--see Technology Requirements). Courses at the Marshfield Site carry fees in addition to the typical undergraduate tuition. Contact the Associate Dean or Marshfield Site Director for details.
Nursing students applying for financial assistance will be considered by the Financial Aid Office on the same basis as other university students. Application forms for financial assistance are available from Blugold Central. Information regarding scholarships available to students after admission to the nursing program is available on the College of Nursing and Health Sciences website, in the Eau Claire Nursing Learning Resource Center (Room 154), in the Marshfield Site program office, and on the university's scholarship page.
Various health and social agencies and institutions are utilized for student learning experiences. Experiences are provided through facilities such as hospitals, schools, nursing homes, public health agencies, child day-care centers, and other community health agencies. Students are responsible for transportation to and from clinical experiences. Some clinical experiences are in other communities.
Organizations and Activities
Membership in the National Student Nurses’ Association and the Wisconsin Student Nurses’ Association is achieved through joining the Eau Claire Student Nurses’ Association. The organization meets regularly to promote the aims of nursing education and provide students experience with respect to the issues and operations of the professional nursing organizations.
UW-Eau Claire students with a faculty advisor also formed the Northwestern Wisconsin Chapter of the American Assembly for Men in Nursing. The chapter is part of the larger American Assembly for Men in Nursing (AAMN) organization and is open to all genders.
Sigma Theta Tau International (now referred to as Sigma) is the Nursing Honor Society. Membership to the local Delta Phi Chapter is by invitation to juniors, seniors, graduate students, and members of the community who demonstrate outstanding academic, scholarship, and leadership potential.
Study Abroad Program
Summer study abroad health profession options in Puebla, Mexico and Valladolid, Spain are of special interest to students in nursing and other majors with an interest in health care. Summer Latin American culture and Spanish language experiences also are available in Costa Rica. Students expecting to take first semester senior nursing courses during a fall term may consider a nursing study abroad opportunity available through the University of Evansville at Harlaxton, England.
Students who are enrolled in nursing courses are expected to arrange for make-up of all class and laboratory work missed, regardless of the reason for the absence. If the absence is anticipated, arrangements for make-up should be made prior to the absence. Students who have missed an excessive portion of the course may be advised to withdraw. Please also refer to the College Admission Requirements and the Nursing Overview for additional academic regulations.
A grade of “incomplete” is allowed only when illness or other extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control have interfered with completion of the course and the plan for completion is a clearly viable alternative for meeting the course objectives. Students may not progress to courses that have a prerequisite course in which a mark of “incomplete” has been received. For the traditional undergraduate nursing program, students are not allowed to progress further in the nursing program until the course with the incomplete grade is successfully completed. Students in the traditional program are expected to be enrolled full-time in the required nursing courses.
Unsatisfactory Grades in Nursing Courses (Grade of less than C)
Any of the following may result in an unsatisfactory grade in a nursing course:
- Clearly unsatisfactory achievement in either the theoretical or the practicum component of a nursing course.
- Failure to meet clinical behavior expectations.
- Failure to meet minimum exam average requirements.
- Failure to submit course assignments or projects.
- Failure to meet make-up requirements in relation to course work missed.
- Failure to appear for the final examination, unless prevented by illness or other emergency from taking the examination at the scheduled time.
- Offenses as defined by the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents in chapter UWS 17 and published on the Dean of Students website.
- Failure to comply with attendance policy as stated in writing by the instructor.
Nursing Student Progression
- Students must receive a satisfactory clinical evaluation in each of the critical areas on a summative clinical evaluation of a course. These areas are:
- Effective noticing (focused observation, recognizing deviations from expected patterns, and information seeking);
- effective interpreting (prioritizing data and making sense of data);
- effective responding (calm, confident manner, clear communication, well-planned intervention/flexibility, and being safe and skillful);
- effective reflecting (evaluation/self-analysis and commitment to improvement);
- respectful and professional behavior;
- professional attire;
- professional values; and
- accountability and responsibility for own professional behavior.
- If a student demonstrates deficiencies that the instructor determines are clearly unsafe or unprofessional behaviors, the student will be immediately removed from the clinical situation.
- Allowing students to do remedial work in a required nursing course is a course faculty decision.
- Remedial work not completed before the end of a semester will result in the student receiving an incomplete or a failing grade.
- A student may repeat only two required nursing courses. Only one of these repeated courses may be a clinical course. Failure in or withdrawal from a third nursing course, or a second clinical course, will result in dismissal from the program.
- When a faculty member has determined that a student has failed a clinical component of a course at any point during the semester, a course grade of F will be assigned and the student cannot withdraw from the course.
- Students must earn a grade of C or better in required nursing and required non-nursing courses (e.g., biology, chemistry, stats, human development).
Termination from Program
A student may be terminated from the nursing program for any of the following reasons:
- Failure to regain good standing.
- A second instance of probation within the college.
- Failure to demonstrate the potential for consistently safe and responsible nursing practice.
- Likelihood that a student’s condition or prior experience will adversely affect the student, other persons, the university, an agency or unit used for clinical practice, or the patients or clients served.
- Failure in or withdrawal from a third nursing course or a second clinical course.
A student who has been notified of termination may appeal for reinstatement. Termination from the program constitutes dismissal from the nursing program only. A student’s status within the university is not affected provided the university standards for good standing are met.
At the end of each semester the University recognizes excellence in scholastic achievement by publishing the Dean’s List. Admitted undergraduate students are eligible if they meet the following criteria for the semester:
- earn a minimum of 12 credits.
- be in good academic standing.
- earn a minimum semester GPA of 3.70.
- have no courses with the following grades: Incomplete, Withdrawal, Audit, or Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (except in courses that are offered only on the S/U grading system in which a grade of S has been earned).
- have no courses below the 100 level.
- have no repeats.
- have no professional semester courses taken in the term (ES 440, ES 441, ES 445, ES 446, ES 470, ES 471, ES 475; SEIP 470, SEIP 472, SEIP 475; UEC 470).
Dean’s List students will receive notification and congratulations from the Dean.
Credit by Examination Policy
Selected undergraduate nursing courses are available to eligible students for credit by examination. Credit for a maximum of two clinical nursing courses may be earned by examination. No more than 20 credits in nursing may be earned through credit by examination. Prerequisite courses must be completed prior to pursuing credit by examination. Each clinical nursing course examination will include instructor observation of student clinical performance, along with other examinations, check-offs, or portfolio reviews, as needed. Objective and/or essay components of the examination must be completed successfully before assignment, clinical examination, and/or portfolio evaluation are attempted.
Students interested in receiving credit by examination for nursing courses should see the nursing department chair for more information.
Certificates, Minors, Second Majors
The nursing major is comprehensive; therefore minors or certificates are not required. Nevertheless, interested students may select a certificate, minor, or second major in a non-nursing field. The Spanish for Health Professionals minor (Code 320-408) is designed for students in nursing or other health-care related professions who desire a proficiency in the Spanish language. (See Department of Languages for program requirements.) Completion of a certificate, minor, or second major will require credits beyond the minimum necessary for graduation from the university. Scheduling difficulties may be encountered when attempting to complete a certificate, minor, or second major. See the major/minor concentration policies in the section on University Graduation Requirements. Students who select a minor or second major must obtain an academic advisor in that area.
Departmental Honors in Nursing Program
The purpose of the Departmental Honors in Nursing Program is to provide an opportunity for students to discover nursing knowledge in a specific topic area using advanced scholarship abilities beyond the student learning outcomes of the baccalaureate nursing program. The program is offered as resources allow. Nursing Honors students will:
- Demonstrate professional motivation and commitment to the contribution of nursing knowledge by participating in a scholarly project that engages the student in any of the following formats: research, evidence-based practice, service project with a health care/community partner, and/or leadership.
- Demonstrate some or all of the following scholarly behaviors with abundant depth and breadth through the scholarly project:
- Formation of a focused practice/academic/management problem or need
- Retrieval, appraisal, analysis, and synthesis of scholarly literature/evidence
- Collaborative design of a scholarly project to meet the identified need
- Implementation of the scholarly project
- Dissemination of the results of the scholarly project in a professional format (oral or poster presentation, manuscript, or other).
- Cultivate professional relationship(s) with Nursing Honors Advisor and/or other significant professional partners.
Eligibility. Nursing students with resident and total GPAs of 3.50 or higher may be admitted.
Application. A written application shall be approved by the Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences and the Nursing Honors Committee.
Requirements for Completion. See college website and Blugold Insider for the most up-to-date requirements, guidelines, and availability of the program.
All students interested in nursing must first apply for admission to the university following the regular university admission procedures and are assigned an academic adviser by the university. Application for admission to the nursing program is a subsequent step and depends upon meeting specific admission requirements.
The College of Nursing and Health Sciences welcomes the opportunity to give guidance in program planning to students in high school who have chosen nursing or are considering it as a career. These students are encouraged to include courses in high school which provide the best foundation for study at the university and in the major field. Recommended are:
|Foreign Language 1||2 units|
|Social Studies||3 units|
Two units of one language, e.g., French, German, Spanish.
Admission to the Traditional Undergraduate Pre-licensure Nursing Program
Formal application to the traditional undergraduate pre-licensure nursing program must be made. A student must first be admitted to UW-Eau Claire as a pre-nursing student and be in good standing before applying to the nursing program. Students are encouraged to apply to the nursing program during the semester in which 30 credits will be completed. The deadlines for filing applications to the College of Nursing and Health Sciences nursing program are May 1 and December 1 for the Eau Claire campus; May 1 and December 1 for the Marshfield Site.
In order to be considered for admission to the nursing program, one must have (also see notes):
- been accepted as a pre-nursing student in the University in good standing.
- completed at least 30 semester credits, not including courses for nursing assistant certification, with a total cumulative GPA of at least 3.00.
- completed at least three of the five required natural science courses, two of which are laboratory science courses, with a GPA of at least 2.50.
- earned a grade of C or above in all courses required for nursing.
- completed and submitted all application materials including but not limited to quality essay and nonrefundable application fee(s).
- completed all clinical and health record, CPR certification, background check, and other related requirements upon admission to the program.
Notes: Evidence of certification as a Nursing Assistant must be submitted prior to registration for sophomore nursing clinical courses (NRSG 267) following admission to the Nursing Program. Remedial coursework (e.g., MATH 20) does not count towards the 30 required credits. CHEM 105 and CHEM 106 together constitute one course for the purpose of the nursing admission criteria; must achieve a grade of C or better in both CHEM 105 and CHEM 106 (not an average of the two).
Other data utilized by the Admissions Committee are derived from a variety of sources including but not limited to applications for admission to the University and the nursing program, high school transcript showing rank in class, previous collegiate records, and standardized tests such as ACT or SAT. International, non-native speakers of English applying to an undergraduate nursing program must have a TOEFL score as follows: TOEFL Written >560 (or IELTS score of 6.5); or TOEFL (CBT) >220; or TOEFL (iBT) >83.
The College may find it necessary to deny admission to a qualified applicant because of enrollment limits in the professional program. Depending on the number of qualified applicants, it is likely that the GPA required to be competitive for admission may be well above the 3.00 minimum cumulative GPA.
The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Marshfield instructional site is not approved by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to issue I-20s or host F visa holders.
The Nurse Scholars Program provides conditional admission to the nursing program for those high achieving pre-nursing students who have been invited to enter the Nurse Scholars and University Honors programs (see University Honors) at the time of admission to the University. Students eligible for the Nurse Scholars Program are identified at the time of admission to the University and must accept the offer when invited. The Nursing Dean’s office contacts the students who are eligible for the program. Eligibility is determined by identified major, high school class rank, ACT score, and admission to University Honors. To maintain Nurse Scholar eligibility for admission to the nursing program, the student must meet specific credit, GPA, and Honors course criteria, as well as additional admission requirements as applicable to all pre-nursing students. Further information is available from the Associate Dean for the college. Pre-nursing students participating in University Honors who believe they mistakenly may not have received a Nurse Scholar invitation must contact the Associate Dean no later than mid-August, prior to starting courses at UW-Eau Claire.
Admission to the BSN Completion Program
The BSN Completion Program is for practicing registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma in nursing from an accredited nursing program who wish to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. Formal application to the BSN Completion Program must be made in the semester prior to enrolling in nursing courses.
To be considered for admission to the BSN Completion Program, students must have (also see notes):
- Graduated with an associate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited nursing program with a minimum grade point average of 2.50.
- A current Wisconsin or Minnesota RN license.
- Been admitted to UW-Eau Claire in good standing.
- Completed at least 30 credits of transferable liberal education/general education courses with a total grade point average of at least 2.50.
- Completed at least three of the five required science courses, with a grade point average of at least 2.50.
- Earned a grade of C or above in all courses required for nursing.
- Completed and submitted all application materials (including but not limited to: application, nonrefundable application fee(s), official transcript from associate degree or diploma program, evidence of Wisconsin or Minnesota RN licensure).
Notes: Examples of national accreditation for nursing programs include NLN, NLNAC, and ACEN. CHEM 105 and CHEM 106 together constitute one course for the purpose of the nursing admission criteria. If completed courses at UWEC, resident GPA must be at least 2.50 or better (a requirement to be in good standing in nursing).
Admitted students must present evidence of having met current health requirements, such as immunity against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, varicella, rubeola (measles), mumps, rubella, and hepatitis B, annual influenza vaccination, and tuberculin skin testing (evidence of two-step TB skin test is required if the student has never been tested for TB). Please refer to the specific health requirement information delineated on the College website. Additional vaccinations and testing including laboratory titers and medical follow-up may be required. To secure admission acceptance, all health requirements, evidence of CPR certification, background check information, etc. must be submitted, along with the appropriate fee(s).
Admitted students must maintain their immune status against infectious diseases. Tuberculin skin tests are offered at the Student Health Service. Any student whose skin test converts from negative to positive while enrolled in the program must have a chest X-ray and a medical evaluation, and provide a statement of the clinician’s findings and recommendations. Students at the Marshfield Site must follow the health requirements of Marshfield Clinic Health System to participate in clinical rotations. Annual interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) including QFT-Gold and T-Spot results may be acceptable in lieu of TB skin test results. Students are not permitted to participate in clinical course work unless all immunizations, TB tests, CPR certification, and background checks are current and cleared/approved. Clinical facilities may have additional requirements which must be met.
All expenses associated with health surveillance and care are borne by the student unless the Student Health Service specifically indicates otherwise. Students are not covered by health or accident insurance by UW-Eau Claire, the College, the practicum facility, or the practicum institution. In addition, workers’ compensation insurance does not cover students while engaged in clinical practice. If a student suffers a needle stick or is injured while in practicum, they are personally responsible to pay for all medical bills and therefore will need personal health insurance.
Due to occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials, health care workers are at risk of acquiring Hepatitis B Virus infection and other serious infections. Students are considered to be at increased risk for needle-stick injuries. Such accidents can also be costly (e.g., student and patient testing, ER injury management, chemoprophylaxis, and potential illness care). The student, not the College, University, or clinical agency, is responsible for these expenses should an accidental exposure occur during a clinical experience.
Some clinical sites require students to show proof of health insurance; therefore, students are required to maintain health insurance for the duration of their education. Students must be able to provide proof of personal health insurance coverage if requested. Students are under a continuing obligation to notify the dean's office of the college of any lapse in personal health insurance coverage.
All applicants must hold Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Certification at the Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers (American Red Cross) or Basic Life Support (BLS) Provider (American Heart Association) level. Evidence of CPR certification must be submitted at the time of admission. Admitted students must keep their certification current.
Student Background Check Requirements
Based on Wisconsin State law, clinical agencies must have completed background checks for all students. Consequently, the College of Nursing and Health Sciences requires students admitted to the nursing programs to complete background check materials which are submitted by the students to CastleBranch.com.
CastleBranch.com conducts Wisconsin and out of state criminal record and healthcare fraud and abuse searches, and includes the Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services (DHFS) Background Information Disclosure (BID), a release for a Wisconsin Department of Justice Criminal Background Check. More information regarding the Wisconsin Caregiver Law can be obtained from DHFS’s Web site. Students participating in clinicals in Minnesota may be required to complete further background checks (with associated fees). Additional, including out of state background checks (with associated fees) may be required by the college and by the clinical agencies. Clinical agencies may conduct further background checks. Final admission status to the nursing program is contingent upon return of criminal background check(s) with no findings that would prevent participation in the program. Because of background check or BID findings, clinical agencies may refuse placement of students. This may prevent progression in or completion of the program. The findings also may affect future licensure, licensure good standing, and employment. A criminal history is not an automatic bar to clinical agency placement, program progression, licensure/certification, and/or future employment. Admitted students are under a continuing obligation to notify the Dean’s Office at the College of Nursing and Health Sciences of any new or pending charges or violations of federal, state, and local laws or the campus student conduct code that occur at any future date and during their tenure as College of Nursing and Health Sciences students. Failure to notify the college may result in loss of good academic standing in the college and an inability to progress in the program.
Any student anticipating transfer to the university for the nursing degree is urged to consult the university Admissions Office as early as possible for information about GPA and course requirements for admission and for the degree requirements (see specific nursing program admission requirements). Official review of the student’s academic record is made by the University Office of Admissions.
Applicants to the nursing program who have completed nursing courses in an accredited baccalaureate nursing program at another college or university setting will be considered on an individual basis, but will likely need to complete the nursing application process. Acceptance will be determined by overall quality of academic record and application, space availability, and the articulation of courses with those offered by the College of Nursing and Health Sciences.
Readmission to Nursing Program
Students who withdraw from the program and wish to return for completion must send a letter to the Dean requesting readmission to the nursing program at least three months in advance of the desired readmission date. Applicants must meet the current admission requirements of the nursing program. Students may be asked to reapply to the program, especially if significant time has passed or if curricular changes or other circumstances have occurred.
Readmission consideration will be given to the length of absence, the reasons for withdrawal, the student’s ability to achieve and academic standing, progress made to rectify any previous concerns or difficulties, and the availability of spaces in the clinical courses in which the student would enroll. If readmission is granted, the remaining program will be planned as considered best for the student and according to the current curriculum.
College Graduation Requirements
To qualify for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Nursing, the candidate must present at least 120 semester credits with a total and resident GPA of at least 2.50; must meet all university requirements for graduation; and must meet all nursing program requirements for the degree.
Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Policy. No course required for the degree in nursing may be taken on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. Audit enrollment is not allowed.