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Frequently asked questions

  • What makes Ontario Tech's BScN program different than those offered at other post-secondary institutions?

    Here's what makes Ontario Tech's BScN program unique:

    • Small, interactive classes in a technology-enriched learning environment.
    • It is offered in collaboration with Durham College so all students remain in one location during all four years.
    • An on-campus 30 bed mini-hospital equipped with programmable mannequins that simulate human physiological functions such as healthy or diseased breathing, heart sounds and blood pressure. Students are able to assess the health status of their mannequin and discover if their assessment interpretations are correct; and administer medications including intravenously.
    • Information Communication and Technology (ICT) is a course offered in first year to guide you through technology used within our program. This course will assist you with researching and preparing references for essays and presentations, and teaches you how to use laptop software.
    • Laptop support staff available seven days a week in person or can be reached by phone when you need laptop assistance from home.
    • The Nursing program at Ontario Tech is a leader in technology-enabled teaching and learning methods.
    • Clinically experienced faculty.
    • Professors teach both classroom theory and applied clinical courses.
    • One-to-one supportive student-faculty relationships.
    • Peer mentors from upper-level Health Sciences students available to help ease the transition to university life.
    • Learning with an adult education focus.
    • A wide variety of hands-on experience including clinical placements in your first year.
  • How large are my classes?

    Introductory classes can be as large as 250 students, but nursing clinical groups are much smaller, with group sizes of eight to 10. The class size in most nursing courses is 50 to 60 students. Small group discussions and seminars also take place with faculty members and clinical experts to discuss areas of interest. We're very proud of our close family-like atmosphere.

  • What kinds of nursing skills will I learn in first year?

    You will learn a variety of nursing skills with a caring focus including:

    • critical-thinking skills
    • documentation
    • dressings changes
    • effective communication and interviewing skills
    • feeding clients
    • health assessment skills
    • hygiene and personal care for clients
    • maintaining intravenous therapy
    • mobility
    • urinary catheterization
  • Will I have clinical experiences in my first year?

    Absolutely. You'll start clinical placement in January of your first year.

  • Where would I go for my clinical experience?

    Ontario Tech has approximately 50 partner sites for clinical placements. They range from hospitals (such as maternity/obstetrics, medical surgery, psychiatry, oncology) to public-health and community-health centres.

    You will learn how to:

    • Assist and enhance patients' health.
    • Help people cope with the demands of illness, including changes in their families, community and society.

    During your final year in the Nursing program, we hope to provide you with a clinical internship, which can be done anywhere in Canada or even internationally.

  • How do I get to my clinical sites?

    Arranging transportation to your placement is your responsibility. Some students drive separately, while others may find it convenient to carpool, walk or take the bus. Durham Region Transit provides bus services to most clinical locations.

  • Is there a limit on enrolment?

    Yes. This program is competitive and we are looking for an annual enrolment of 160 first-year students.

  • Are all classes in the daytime?

    There is a mixture of day and evening classes. The majority of classes are offered in the daytime.

  • Can I study part-time?

    The basic baccalaureate program, like most programs at Ontario Tech, is full-time. Under certain circumstances, students may be able to study part-time. Please contact the academic advisor for further details. Those students who already have a degree may be eligible to carry a reduced course load.

  • What kind of grades do I need to remain in the program?

    You must maintain a 60 per cent average in required Nursing courses, and an overall 60 per cent average. You cannot fail more than one clinical course, or the same clinical course twice.

  • What other equipment will I need?

    Your books will cost about $1,200. After you arrive, you can look for used books advertised on student discussion boards. Other additional purchases for the Nursing program are approximately $200. This includes items such as a stethoscope, watch with a second hand, penlight and a uniform.

  • I have completed a number of courses in another university Nursing program. Can I receive exemptions or advanced standing based on these courses?

    Exemptions for courses taken at another university are granted, provided that those courses are comparable to similar courses at Ontario Tech, that the courses are relevant to the program, and that the marks meet the required levels. Please contact admissions for more information.

  • If I work and have a family, can I handle this program?

    There are students in the program with similar responsibilities. With careful time management, family and employer support, and necessary resources, these candidates have been able to meet the challenges of earning a Nursing degree.

  • If I have been out of school for a number of years, can I succeed in this program?

    If you have been out of academic studies for a long period, we suggest university preparation courses. Following these suggestions will help to maximize your chances of success in the program. Admissions can provide you with more details.

  • Are there many science courses in the program?

    The program has:

    • Four science courses:
      • Biochemistry
      • Microbiology
      • Nutrition
      • Pharmacology
    • Anatomy (two courses)
    • Pathophysiology (two courses)
    • Physiology (two courses)

    All the science courses have a strong health-science focus.

  • I'm a good student in science; why should I study nursing?

    Nursing is a perfect fit for someone who excels in science. In our unique program, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and other sciences are used to understand how the body functions in health and illness. If you enjoy the basic sciences, you will be pleased to know that nurses put science into practice.

  • What are my chances of getting a job as a nurse?

    As a graduate of our Nursing program, you will have the opportunity to work in a variety of health-care settings. The full-time and part-time employment opportunities in nursing change as the public sector responds to the global economic climate. In general, and compared to other university graduates with a bachelor degree, nursing grads are highly sought after in Ontario, across the country and throughout the world!

  • How much does a nurse with a BScN earn?

    Based on 2019 figures, the entry-level salary for a new graduate working in Ontario is approximately $58,831 per year. Extra income is earned by:

    • Becoming a team leader.
    • Night shift employment.
    • Working in specialized clinical settings.

    Salary increases annually with experience and higher levels of education.

  • Will nursing help me get into medical school?

    With excellent grades, it may be possible to enter into medical school but it is important to realize that nursing and medicine are two distinct professions. Nurses focus on how people respond to health and illness situations, while doctors focus on the diagnosis and treatment of disease. Ontario Tech also offers a program called Health Science, which strives to prepare students for academic paths such as medical school.

  • Do we get any credits for our diploma nursing courses?