Program Information


  • Program Length 
    4 Years
  • Credential 
    Bachelor Degree
  • Location Offered 
    Nanaimo

Satisfy your desire to make a difference in a fast-paced professional career as a nurse. Get ready to join one of the most in-demand occupations in today’s economy by taking your Bachelor of Science in Nursing at VIU. Our BSN degree teaches nursing skills with a strong emphasis on student-faculty interactions and hands-on, practical experiences.

Approved by the BC College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM), VIU’s nursing school prepares you to work in a variety of different nursing occupations. Located on beautiful Vancouver Island, VIU is your BC nursing school of choice!

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program

VIU offers a full-time four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program (Option A), and a full-time 3 year PN to BSN Bridge-in Program (Option C). Option C is available only to licensed Practical Nurses.  The same program/concept-based collaborative curriculum is also offered in partnership with North Island College (NIC) in Comox BC.  The BSN program is accredited by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN) and approved by the BC College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM). Upon successful completion of eight academic semesters (fall and spring semesters) and three consolidated practice experiences (Intercession), students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from VIU, be eligible to write the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses), and apply for nursing registration through BCCNM.  

The concept-based curriculum is based on the concepts of caring and health promotion and includes core concepts such as leadership, advocacy, political action, nursing knowledge development, and nursing scholarship.  Practice experience is emphasized, as well as the need for thoughtful, reflective action as defined by the concept of praxis. Settings include classroom, lab/simulation lab, practice (hospital and community settings) which offer diverse contexts to ensure students develop professional nursing skills to provide direct care and leadership as part of a team in urban, rural, and global settings.

Please visit the Program Website for more information.

Option A involves completion of the program in its entirety in order to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.  On successful completion of 8 academic semesters and 3 consolidated practice experiences, and institutional Degree English Requirements, students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from VIU and be eligible to write the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses) and apply for nursing registration through BCCNM.

Option C (when available) students enter into a bridge-in semester consisting of bridge-in courses, a Transition to BSN Program course, one of their required English and PHIL 331 (Ethics in Health Care). Following completion of the bridge-in semester, Option C students then follow the same program grid as Option A students. 

Program Outline - Option A - Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Year 1

Credits

NURS 100 - (Health and Healing I: Living Health)

3

NURS 102 - (Relational Practice I: Self and Others)

3

NURS 103 - (Professional Practice I: Introduction to the Profession of Nursing)

3

NURS 104 - (Nursing Practice I: Introduction to Nursing Practice)

4.5

NURS 110 - (Health and Healing II: Health Indicators)

3

NURS 111 - (Nursing Learning Centre II)

3

NURS 113 - (Professional Practice II: Introduction to the Discipline of Nursing)

3

NURS 114 - (Nursing Practice II: Coming to Know the Client)

5

NURS 175 - (Consolidated Practice Experience I)

6

BIOL 156 - (Nursing: Anatomy and Physiology I)

4

BIOL 157 - (Nursing: Anatomy and Physiology II)

4

Degree English Requirements

6

Semester Credits

47.5

Year 2

Credits

NURS 200 - (Health & Healing III: Health Challenges/Healing Initiatives)

3

NURS 201 - (Nursing Learning Centre III)

3

NURS 202 - (Relational Practice II: Creating Health Promoting Relationships)

3

NURS 204 - (Nursing Practice III: Promoting Health & Healing)

6

NURS 208 - (Health Sciences III: Pathophysiology I)

3

NURS 210 - (Health & Healing IV: Health Challenges/Healing Initiatives)

3

NURS 211 - (Nursing Learning Centre IV)

3

NURS 214 - (Nursing Practice IV: Promoting Health & Healing)

6

NURS 218 - (Health Science IV: Pathophysiology II)

3

PHIL 331 - (Ethics in Health Care)

3

NURS 275 - (Consolidated Practice Experience II)

6

Semester Credits

42

Year 3

Credits

NURS 300 - (Health & Healing V: Complex Health Challenges/Healing Initiatives)

3

NURS 301 - (Nursing Learning Centre V)

3

NURS 302 - (Relational Practice III: Connecting Across Difference)

3

NURS 304 - (Nursing Practice V: Promoting Health & Healing)

6

NURS 310 - (Health & Healing VII: Promoting Community & Societal Health)

3

NURS 313 - (Professional Practice IV: Nursing Inquiry)

3

NURS 314 - (Nursing Practice VI: Promoting Health of Communities & Society)

4

NURS 318 - (Health & Healing VI: Global Health Issues)

3

NURS 375 - (Consolidated Practice Experience III)

8

Elective other than Nursing*

3

Semester Credits

39

* General electives: Any VIU course numbered 100 and above with content dissimilar to the BSN. Courses with a "T" suffix are not eligible as electives. Students interested in taking a non-VIU elective must consult with the BSN advisor.

Year 4

Credits

NURS 400 - (Professional Practice V: Leadership in Nursing)

3

NURS 403 - (Professional Practice VI: Nursing Research)

3

NURS 404 - (Nursing Practice VII: Engaging in Leadership)

4

Approved Nursing elective

3

Elective other than Nursing*

3

NURS 414 - (Nursing Practice VIII: Transition to Graduate Nurse)

11

Semester Credits

27

* General electives: Any VIU course numbered 100 and above with content dissimilar to the BSN. Courses with a "T" suffix are not eligible as electives. Students interested in taking a non-VIU elective must consult with the BSN advisor.

Program Outline - Option C - Practical Nurse (PN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Bridge-in Program

Year 2

Credits

NURS 170 - (Health & Healing Bridge-In)

3

NURS 173 - (Relational Practice Bridge-In)

3

NURS 207 - (Transition to BSN Program) 

3

NURS 210 - (Health & Healing IV: Health Challenges/Healing Initiatives)

3

NURS 211 - (Nursing Learning Centre IV)

3

NURS 214 - (Nursing Practice IV: Promoting Health & Healing)

6

NURS 218 - (Health Science IV: Pathophysiology II)

3

PHIL 331 - (Ethics in Health Care)

3

Degree English Requirements

6

NURS 275 - (Consolidated Practice Experience II)

6

Semester Credits

39

Year 3

Credits

NURS 300 - (Health & Healing V: Complex Health Challenges/Healing Initiatives)

3

NURS 301 - (Nursing Learning Centre V)

3

NURS 302 - (Relational Practice III: Connecting Across Difference)

3

NURS 304 - (Nursing Practice V: Promoting Health & Healing)

6

NURS 310 - (Health & Healing VII: Promoting Community & Societal Health)

3

NURS 313 - (Professional Practice IV: Nursing Inquiry)

3

NURS 314 - (Nursing Practice VI: Promoting Health of Communities & Society)

4

NURS 318 - (Health & Healing VI: Global Health Issues)

3

NURS 375 - (Consolidated Practice Experience III)

8

Elective other than Nursing*

3

Semester Credits

39

* General electives: Any VIU course numbered 100 and above with content dissimilar to the BSN. Courses with a "T" suffix are not eligible as electives. Students interested in taking a non-VIU elective must consult with the BSN advisor.

Year 4

Credits

NURS 400 - (Professional Practice V: Leadership in Nursing)

3

NURS 403 - (Professional Practice VI: Nursing Research)

3

NURS 404 - (Nursing Practice VII: Engaging in Leadership)

4

Approved Nursing elective

3

Elective other than Nursing*

3

NURS 414 - (Nursing Practice VIII: Transition to Graduate Nurse)

11

Semester Credits

27

* General electives: Any VIU course numbered 100 and above 

Updated 
Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Option A involves completion of the program in its entirety in order to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.  On successful completion of 8 academic semesters and 3 consolidated practice experiences, and institutional Degree English Requirements, students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from VIU and be eligible to write the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses) and apply for nursing registration through the BC College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM).

Admission Requirements

  • Minimum "C+" in each of Chemistry 11, Biology 12, English 12, and a minimum "C+" in one of Principles of Mathematics 11, Pre–Calculus 11, Foundations of Mathematics 12; or equivalents.
  • Completion of CASPer test.

Notes on Admission

  • Aboriginal students can apply for reserved seats by submitting the Access Initiative for Aboriginal Students form.
  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to use their VIU student number when registering for the CASPer test.
  • Click here for more information about the CASPer test, including upcoming test dates.
  • Please note: CASPer scores are only valid for one admission cycle.
  • Note: The following documents are required by the first day of classes.
    • Completed Immunization Requirements Form
    • Criminal Record Check. Fieldwork and/or practicums will require a satisfactory criminal record check prior to placement. Criminal Record Checks are requested through VIU. The Registration Centre at VIU will contact prospective students by mail regarding the requirements for a Criminal Record Check. Criminal Record Checks are processed through the Ministry according to the Criminal Records Review Act. A check completed through the RCMP is not sufficient to meet the requirements of the Act.
    • Basic Life Support – It is the student’s professional responsibility to hold a current, unexpired Basic Life Support certificate prior to commencing and throughout the BSN Program. 
  • Students who have graduated from an approved Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program and who have practiced a minimum of 450 hours as an LPN in BC within the preceding two years will be given advanced credit for NURS 175.
  • Students who have graduated from an approved Health Care Assistant (HCA) program and have practiced a minimum of 450 hours as an HCA in BC within the preceding two years, may request a Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) for NURS 175/Consolidated Practice I.  Contact the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Advisor 1-888-920-9921, Ext. 4133. 
  • Prior Learning Assessment credit may be available for courses in this program. Contact the Chair, Bachelor of Science in Nursing Advisor, 1-888-920-9921, Ext. 4133.
  • This program is not currently available to international students.

Option C (PN to BSN Bridge-in)

Option C allows Licensed Practice Nurses to access/bridge-in to second year of the Bachelor of Science program. On successful completion of 3 years and institutional Degree English Requirements, students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from VIU and be eligible to write the NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses) and apply for nursing registration through BCCNM.

Admission Requirements

  • Must have graduated from a recognized Practice Nurse (PN) Program.
  • Must be currently licensed as a Practical Nurse through BC College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM).
  • Must have the equivalent of one year full-time employment (1700-1800 hours) as practicing PN in BC over the past 3 years. 
  • Letter of recommendation from current employer confirming work history over the past 3 years. 
  • Completion of CASPer test.

 Notes on Admission

  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to use their VIU student number when registering for the CASPer test.
  • Click here for more information about the CASPer test, including upcoming test dates.
  • Please note: CASPer scores are only valid for one admission cycle.
  • Enrolment in this program is limited. Students who meet or exceed the minimum admission requirements may not necessarily be admitted to the program. Admission rankings are determined by a combination of final GPA from the applicant's Practical Nursing Program transcripts, letter of recommendation from current employer. 
  • Aboriginal students can apply for reserved seats by submitting the Access Initiative for Aboriginal Students form.
  • Note: The following documents are required by the first day of classes.
    • Completed Immunization Requirements Form
    • Criminal Record Check. Fieldwork and/or practicums will require a satisfactory criminal record check prior to placement. Criminal Record Checks are requested through VIU. The Registration Centre at VIU will contact prospective students by mail regarding the requirements for a Criminal Record Check. Criminal Record Checks are processed through the Ministry according to the Criminal Records Review Act. A check completed through the RCMP is not sufficient to meet the requirements of the Act.
    • Basic Life Support – It is the student’s professional responsibility to hold a current, unexpired Basic Life Support certificate prior to commencing and throughout the BSN Program.
  • Prior Learning Assessment credit may be available for courses in this program. Contact the Chair, Bachelor of Science in Nursing Advisor, 1-888-920-9921, Ext. 2267.
  • This program is not currently available to international students.

Note on Progression - Option A and C

  • In order to apply credit for any course towards the requirements of the BSN degree, the nursing student must achieve a minimum grade of "C" in that course. In addition, students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.33 ("C+") for each academic year, and must pass each nursing practicum. The grade point average is calculated on nursing courses and includes PHIL 331, BIOL 156, BIOL 157, and upper nursing elective courses taken within that academic year. 
  • Practice experiences within the curriculum are a vital part of learning. Attendance is required in all practice courses. Students that miss more than 10% of a practice course may be at risk of not successfully completing the course. 

Note on Progression - Option A

  • Students are required to maintain a 65% ("C+") average in all courses with no grade lower than 60% ("C").
  • BIOL 156 must be completed with a minimum grade of 'C' as a prerequisite for semester 2 (Spring semester/year 1) of the BSN Program. 
  • BIOL 157 must be completed with a minimum grade of 'C" as a prerequisite for semester 3 (Fall semester/year 2) of the BSN Program.

Progression within the Program:

A student may be discontinued in their program for a variety of reasons: course failure; withdrawal for personal, medical, fitness to practice concerns, etc. Since each semester is a prerequisite for the subsequent semester, a student who does not successfully complete a semester will be discontinued in the program. If the student becomes eligible for re-entry, the student may request re-entry for when that course/semester is next offered. Re-entry is subject to seat availability: a seat will not be set aside for a returning student. 

1. Course Failure: 

  • A student who is unsuccessful/fails a program course, cannot proceed into the next semester and will be required to discontinue from the program. The student may request re-entry for the semester when that course is next offered. 
  • A student who is unsuccessful/fails a practice course, will be required to retake that practice course when it is next offered and may also be required to retake the theory and/or lab/learning centre course(s) that inform that practice course, upon the discretion of the program chair. 
  • A student who is unsuccessful/fails a single program course, re-enters and retakes the same course and subsequently fails that course (e.g., fails the same course twice), will be required to leave the program. If the student wants to re-enter the program, they must wait a minimum of two years and must apply to semester 1/year 1 of the program with no credit for previously completed program courses. 
  • A student who is unsuccessful/fails any two program courses (any combination of practice, lab, and/or theory), will be required to leave the program. If the student wants to re-enter the program, they must wait a minimum of two years and must apply as a new student to a semester 1/year 1 of the program with no credit for previously completed program courses. 

*'Program courses' are those courses that are core to the program (e.g., electives are excluded). 

Re-Entry After Withdrawal from Program

See also section below regarding re-entry to program. 

A student who withdraws from the program (e.g., due to personal, financial, health, fitness to practice reasons) may request re-entry for when that semester is next offered.

2. Notice of Discontinuation: 

A student who is required to be discontinued from the program will first meet with the Program Chair. The re-entry process will be discussed, including any conditions for re-entry and any support services designed to help the student achieve greater success in their future studies. A 'Student Discontinuation Form' will be completed; the student will receive a copy of this form. 

Re-entry into the Program: 

1. Notice of Re-Entry: 

A student seeking re-entry after withdrawing or being required to discontinue, must make their intent to return known to the Program Chair, in writing (formal letter or email), as soon as possible and no later than four months prior to the desired start date. The approval of a request for re-entry will take into consideration the date which the written notification was received by the Chair of the program. 

2. Seat Availability

Re-entry into the program is subject to seat availability. 

3. Corrective Learning Plan for Re-entry 

In order to facilitate a successful re-entry, prior to offering a re-entry student a program seat, the student will meet with the Program Chair and/or Program Advisor. Each student will be assessed individually and the 'Student Discontinuation Form' notes will be reviewed including recommendations for program re-entry. The student will complete a Corrective Learning Plan of how they have/will ensure competency/currency in their knowledge, skills, and practice; any gaps identified; specific strategies to close those gaps; and a specific timeline of what must be completed prior to re-entry. At the discretion of the Program Chair and/or Program Advisor, the Corrective Learning Plan may include the requirement for the student to complete: 

  1. A Directed Studies Course that focuses on integration of program knowledge, skills, and practice including decision-making and critical thinking. (Level/expectation will be consistent with what would be expected of a student at the level the student is returning to). The course will be structured around that student's specific learning needs. 
  2. OR one or more of the following:
    • Med Math (Drug Calculations for Health Care) Exam
    • Skills assessment on previously learning skills
    • Simulation Scenario and/or comprehensive lab scenario
    • Comprehensive Care Plan
    • Audit of lab/learning centre and/or theory courses. A student cannot audit a practice course. 
    • Repeat of lab/learning centre, practice, and/or theory courses. 

If the student does not successfully complete the requirements of the Corrective Learning Plan, then the Program Chair may: 

  • Permit the student to re-enter but at an earlier semester and repeat certain courses.
  • Not permit the student to re-enter or re-apply to that program for a minimum of two years. 

4. Number of Times for Re-entry

A student who has been discontinued from the program due to course failure, may re-enter the program at the point where they exited the program once only. If the student is requesting a second re-entry into the program, they must first meet with the Dean and Program Chair who will determine the eligibility for re-entry. 

Completion Requirements

The maximum time for a student to complete all program requirements is 6 years, with no period of absence exceeding 24 months.

Under exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the Dean and Program Chair, a student may be granted an extension. 

Domestic Fees

Tuition and Other Mandatory Student Fees

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Year 1

Amount

Tuition (41.5 credits x $156.80 per credit)

6,507.20

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

260.29

Student Services fee (41.5 credits x $6.93 per credit)

287.60

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $20.90 per month)

167.20

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275.00 per year)

275.00

Uniforms, shoes, watch, and stethoscope (approximate costs)

500.00

Books and supplies: Year 1 (approximate costs)

1,900.00

Total

9,897.29

Year 1 - Intersession

Amount

Tuition (6 credits x $156.80 per credit)

940.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

260.29

Student Services fee (6 credits x $6.93 per credit)

41.58

VIU Students' Union fee (3 months x $20.90 per month)

62.70

Total

1,305.37

Year 2

Amount

Tuition (35 credits x $156.80 per credit)

5,488.00

Lab Fee

84.46

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition and lab fee)

222.90

Student Services fee (35 credits x $6.93 per credit)

242.55

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $20.90 per month)

167.20

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275.00 per year)

275.00

Books and supplies per year: Years 2-4 (approximate costs)

1,000.00

Total

7,480.11

Year 2 - Intersession

Amount

Tuition (6 credits x $156.80 per credit)

940.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

37.63

Student Services fee (6 credits x $6.93 per credit)

41.58

VIU Students' Union fee (3 months x $20.90 per month)

62.70

Total

1,082.71

Year 3

Amount

Tuition (31 credits x $156.80 per credit)

4,860.80

Lab Fee

84.46

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition and lab fee)

197.81

Student Services fee (31 credits x $6.93 per credit)

214.83

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $20.90 per month)

167.20

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275.00 per year)

275.00

Books and supplies per year: Years 2-4 (approximate costs)

1,000.00

Total

6,800.10

Year 3 - Intersession

Amount

Tuition (8 credits x $156.80 per credit)

1,254.40

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

50.18

Student Services fee (8 credits x $6.93 per credit)

55.44

VIU Students' Union fee (3 months x $20.90 per month)

62.70

Total

1,422.72

Year 4

Amount

Tuition (28 credits x $156.80 per credit)

4,390.40

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

175.62

Student Services fee (28 credits x $6.93 per credit)

194.04

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $20.90 per month)

167.20

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275.00 per year)

275.00

Books and supplies per year: Years 2-4 (approximate costs)

1,000.00

Total

6,202.26

Notes

Students are responsible for travel expenses for clinical experience.

Professional fees are the responsibility of the student. The National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX) costs approximately $360 CAD, which is taken upon successful completion of the BSN program. Graduates also have to apply for a provisional graduate nurse license through the College of Registered Nurses of BC (CRNBC) in order to practice nursing in British Columbia; this costs approximately $600 CAD.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full-time students at the Nanaimo Campus.

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

Updated
Thursday, July 1, 2021

Option A: The program starts in September and applications are accepted starting the first business day in October. The application deadline is January 31.

Option C: Currently not accepting applications. Please contact the Nursing department at 250-740-6175 for information on start dates and application deadlines.

Program Start Date Accepting Applications Campus
Accepting International Applications
No
Application Fee
$42.55
Accepting Late Applications
No
Waitlist
No
Testing Required
No
Admissions Assistant

Name: Donna Kist
Phone: 250-753-3245 ext. 2526
Email: Donna.Kist@viu.ca

Chair Contact

Name: Contact Deborah Collette, Nursing Advisor
Phone: 753-3245 ext. 4133
Email: Deborah.Collette@viu.ca

Coordinator Contact

Name: Deb Roe BSN Program Assistant
Phone: 250-740-6175
Email: Deb.Roe@viu.ca

Documentation Deadline

An official interim or final grade is required for all 4 prerequisites by March 31, 2021 in order for an application to be considered. CASPer test scores are also required by March 31, 2021.

Comments

Please note that the average GPA of students accepted in the past has been a GPA of 4.33-3.58. Admission for the 2021 intake will be based 60% on GPA and 40% on CASPer test score results.

NEW - CASPer test required. Sign up at takeCASPer.

CASPer test dates for the 2020/2021 application cycle are:

Dates:

  • Tuesday, January 12, 2021 @ 5 pm EST
  • Thursday, February 11, 2021 @ 5 pm EST
  • Thursday, February 11, 2021 @ 8 pm EST
  • Sunday, February 28, 2021 @ 1 pm EST
  • Sunday, February 28, 2021 @ 4 pm EST