2018-19 Virginia Western Academic Catalog 
    Jun 04, 2023  
2018-19 Virginia Western Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Nursing, A.A.S.

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Associate of Applied Science

Mission Statement

The mission of the Virginia Western nursing program is to provide affordable, community access to quality nursing education. The Virginia Western nursing program prepares qualified students to provide safe, competent, entry-level nursing care in 21st century healthcare environments. Students are prepared to meet the ever-increasing complexity of the healthcare needs of the citizens of Virginia.

Statement of Purpose and Vision


The Virginia Western nursing faculty ascribe to the core competencies for nursing and nursing education. While firmly based in science and the arts, the essence of nursing is caring and compassionate patient centered care. Ethical standards, respect for individual dignity, and consideration of cultural context are implicit in the practice of patient centered care. The nurse advocates for patients and families in ways that promote self-determination, integrity, and ongoing growth as human beings. Nursing care is provided in collaboration with the patient, the family and members of the health care team. The nurse displays a spirit of inquiry by examining evidence to improve quality of care, promote safety and improve patient outcomes. Nursing judgment is integral to making competent decisions related to the provision of safe and effective nursing care. Information management essential to nursing care is communicated via a variety of technological and human means.

Shared Beliefs

AAS Nursing Program faculty  are dedicated to improving the health of our community through development of future nurses who are distinguished as safe, competent professionals, dedicated to the highest standards of care. Faculty believe in the potential of adults to learn and master new knowledge. To that end, faculty engage students in classroom, lab, and clinical settings to help students apply and master new knowledge, necessary to prepare them for the nursing profession.  Faculty believe lifelong learning is required of all nurses who have stewardship in the care of our community.  Students are encouraged to acquire a firm educational foundation for practice that continues throughout their careers from novice to expert nurses.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Concept Based Curriculum

Students will be able to:

1. Provide client centered care promoting therapeutic relationships, caring behaviors, and self-determination across the lifespan for diverse populations.

2. Practice safe nursing care that minimizes risk of harm across systems and client populations.

3. Demonstrate nursing judgment through the use of clinical reasoning, the nursing process, and evidence-based practice in the provision of safe, quality care.

4. Practice professional behaviors that encompass the legal/ethical framework while incorporating self-reflection, leadership and a commitment to recognize the value of lifelong learning.

5. Manage client care through quality improvement processes, information technology, and fiscal responsibility to meet client needs and support organizational outcomes.

6. Demonstrate principles of collaborative practice within the nursing and interdisciplinary teams fostering mutual respect and shared decision-making to achieve stated outcomes of care.

End of Program Outcomes

Virginia Western is committed to the overall excellence of its AASN program through the following end-of-program outcomes:

1. Kaplan Testing and Clinical Evaluation methodologies will demonstrate that Virginia Western AAS Nursing students have achieved each end of program student learning outcome (EPSLO).

2. Virginia Western AAS Nursing program will attain a National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN) pass rate of 80% on the first attempt.

3. Virginia Western AAS Nursing program will demonstrate a program completion rate of at least 65% within one and one-half times the program length following nursing program matriculation.

4. Virginia Western anticipates that 90% of graduates seeking employment will acquire nursing employment within six months of graduation.

Program Approval

This program is approved by the Virginia Board of Nursing. Virginia Board of Nursing, Perimeter Center, 9960 Maryland Drive, Suite 300, Henrico, VA, 23233-1463.

This nursing education program is a candidate for accreditation by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
3343 Peachtree Road, Suite 850
Atlanta, GA  30326

Admission Procedures

  1. The nursing program accepts new students each fall. While applications are accepted at any time, to be eligible for Admission the application packet must be completed no later than March 1 of the Admission year.  Early application is encouraged for advising purposes.  All application materials must be submitted to the attention of the School of Health Professions Advisor. The applicant is responsible for making certain that the following have been submitted in addition to the college application: Nursing Application Form (available on web page), official transcripts showing completion of a high school diploma or records  showing completion of GED with scores, official transcripts from all colleges attended (transcripts from VWCC or other Virginia community colleges are not required).  In addition, after the March 1 deadline, qualified applicants will be required to complete the Kaplan Entrance Test
  2. Applicants should be aware that meeting the curriculum standards does not guarantee program admission.  In May, all qualified applicants will receive a letter to notify them of their status with the program.

New or Updated Admission Criteria:

  1. Submission of completed nursing application by posted deadline (March 1 annually)
  2. 2.0 minimum cumulative GPA of college courses established at end of Fall semester based on at least 12 credit hours of college credit or High School GPA if 12 credit hours not completed by end of Fall semester.
  3. 2.5 minimum prerequisite GPA based on the following courses:  BIO 141, ENG 111, PSY 230, SDV 101.  Minimum grade of C is required in all prerequisite courses. Completion of all prerequisite courses by end of Spring semester prior to beginning the program. 
  4. High School Graduate/ GED/ Certificate of Home Schooling
  5. Grade C or better in High School Algebra, Biology, Chemistry
  6. Age 18 by start of program (August)
  7. Competency in mathematics as placement out of MTE 1-5 on the Virginia Placement Test or successful completion of the developmental modules or waived by placement guidelines (Multiple Measures)
  8. Competency in English as evidenced by eligibility for ENG 111 and course completion
  9. 45th percentile in all Kaplan categories (math, reading, writing, science, and critical thinking) on admission testing to be completed March-April prior to beginning the program as scheduled.
  10. Completion of all clinical/ health requirements for placement at clinical agencies to include but not limited to:  Physical exam, immunity record by vaccination history/ positive titers, negative urine drug screen, back ground check without positive findings or as accepted by the clinical agency, health insurance, current American Heart Association BLS Provider CPR, signed statement of risk. Information regarding these items will be given at a mandatory new student orientation that will be scheduled between May and June annually.

For information on the LPN to Nursing AAS bridge program, please visit http://www.virginiawestern.edu/academics/health/lpntorn/index.php

Although this program is not designed for transfer, agreements with specific institutions may exist. Contact the Nursing program head as listed on program webpage.

Total Minimum Credits for Degree: 65

1 The two credit SDV 108   will satisfy the SDV 101  requirement. SDV 108  is for developmental English students.

Must be completed within five years of beginning the program.

* This course has a requisite.

Program Notes:

Any first semester NSG course failure results in reapplication to the nursing program. Students are not guaranteed readmission. The admission process is competitive with limited seats. If a student drops NSG 106, they must also drop NSG 100 as the student will not be eligible for clinical. Failure from NSG 100 but passing NSG 106 requires a student to re-apply to the program. If a student withdraws from NSG 152 or NSG 170, they must withdraw from both courses as these courses are co-requisites. If a student withdraws from NSG 252 or NSG 270, they must withdraw from both courses as these courses are co-requisites. Failure to pass math competency exams in semesters 1- 4 may require a student to withdraw from the program and be subject to readmission policy.

A math competency exam will be administered during NSG 106, NSG 170, NSG 210 and NSG 252.


Clinical agencies require that students have periodic background checks and drug screenings completed at the student’s expense before beginning clinical rotations in the agency. A positive background check may include fingerprinting and drug screening and may deny a nursing student access to clinical agencies. Clinical facilities have the right to use a different background check than Virginia Western Community College that could affect a student’s ability to participate in clinical experiences. Inability to participate in clinical rotations will disqualify the student from completing the nursing program.

Conviction of a felony, misdemeanor or any offense substantially related to the qualifications, functions and duties of a registered nurse may constitute grounds for not allowing a candidate to take the licensing exam. This decision is made by the State Board of Nursing. For questions regarding this issue, call The Virginia Board of Nursing (804) 367-4515.

Although this program is not designed for transfer, articulation agreements with four year institutions may be available. Contact the Virginia Western program head for details.

All Students must maintain a grade of “C” or better in all program required courses to remain in the program.

Students accepted into the A.A.S. Nursing Program will receive a program handbook during their mandatory orientation prior to beginning the program.

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