The College of Nursing and Health Sciences
The College of Nursing and Health Sciences (CNHS) offers undergraduate and graduate programs in a variety of health disciplines. The entry-level degree programs prepare the student for initial entry into clinical or health-related practice and provide a solid foundation for further education. The curricula include rigorous academic preparation and most programs include extensive field experience at selected facilities. The graduate programs prepare students for advanced practice in the health care disciplines and to assume leadership roles in practice, education, and research. The faculty of the CNHS is committed to excellence in teaching, the conduct of research that extends knowledge and contributes to the science of each discipline, and public service to improve the health of citizens of state, national and global communities.
The following entry-level degree programs are offered: Bachelor of Science degree programs in Athletic Training; Communication Sciences and Disorders; Exercise Science; Health Sciences; Medical Laboratory Science; Medical Radiation Sciences; and Nursing. Nursing also offers an RN to B.S. curriculum for RN's with an associate's degree in Nursing. A post-baccalaureate program in Medical Laboratory Science to prepare students with a degree in another field to sit for the national certification exam is offered through Continuing and Distance Education. Continuing and Distance Education also offers a post-baccalaureate certificate program in Communication Sciences and Disorders that prepares students to practice as speech-language pathology assistants and a post-baccalaureate certificate program that prepares students to enter a master's degree program. The baccalaureate degree in Health Sciences offered by the Department of Biomedical and Health Sciences may be selected by either four-year residential or degree-completion students who have previously earned at least one year (30 credit hours) of college credit.
A Master of Science degree is offered by the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department; and the Master of Science in Medical Laboratory Science degree is offered by the Department of Biomedical and Health Sciences. A Master of Science in Physical Activity and Wellness Science and a doctoral degree in Physical Therapy are offered through the Rehabilitation and Movement Sciences Department. The Nursing Department offers a direct-entry degree program (DEPN) for non-nurse college graduates; a master's degree as a Clinical Nurse Leader, and a doctoral program (D.N.P.) in Primary Care for practice as either a Family or Adult-Gerontological Nurse Practitioner. The Executive Nurse Leader credential may be achieved through the D.N.P program. Post-graduate certificates are also available. The graduate program in Nursing is designed to enhance the clinical and academic background of licensed registered nurses and to prepare them for advanced practice and leadership. The College also offers an interdisciplinary Doctor of Philosophy in Human Functioning and Rehabilitation Science degree.
Graduates of baccalaureate-level professional programs are eligible to sit for the appropriate licensure examination and enter practice or go on to other health-related fields. All of the professional programs needing accreditation and/or state approval for licensure eligibility have achieved and maintained such status.
Requirements for admission, retention and graduation are detailed below for each of the undergraduate degree programs. The College of Nursing and Health Sciences reserves the right to require the withdrawal of any student whose academic record, performance, or behavior in the professional programs is judged unsatisfactory. All candidates for admission and continuation must be able to perform the essential clinical, as well as academic, requirements of the CNHS programs. These requirements include: the capacity to observe and communicate; sufficient motor ability to perform physical diagnostic examinations and basic laboratory and clinical procedures; emotional stability to exercise good judgment and to work effectively in stressful situations; and intellectual ability to synthesize data and solve problems. CNHS students must be able to meet these technical standards either with, or without, reasonable accommodations. Some professional licensing examiners, clinical affiliates and potential employers may require students and graduates to disclose personal health history, substance abuse history, and/or criminal convictions, which may, under certain conditions, impact eligibility for professional examinations, licensing, clinical affiliation, and employment. Some programs have additional clinical requirements such as CPR certification and up-to-date-immunizations. Radiation therapy students must demonstrate professionalism, professional development, and competency in the clinical setting.
There are some special elements associated with clinical education. Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from clinical sites and, where relevant, the costs of housing for clinical experiences. Students may need to complete a criminal background check prior to clinical placement. Evidence of a criminal record may prevent students from being eligible for clinical placement and/or professional licensure. All students must carry professional liability insurance during clinical rotations, and will be billed approximately $40 per year for this insurance.
Students engaging in clinical education experiences must comply with required health clearances including testing, immunizations, and titers for certain infectious diseases (costs vary depending on students’ insurance). Applicants to the college’s clinical programs must realize there is always an element of risk through exposure to infectious disease. The university is not responsible for medical costs resulting from injury during clinical rotation, or during any other curricular activity, unless this injury is due to negligence by the university.