Upon successful completion of the program, students receive a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Nursing graduates are qualified to take the NCLEX examination for licensure as a registered nurse. The nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and approved by the Connecticut Department of Higher Education and the Connecticut State Board of Examiners for Nursing.
Baccalaureate in Nursing Program Outcomes
- Demonstrate effectiveness in planning and providing holistic evidence-based nursing care for diverse individuals and populations.
- Create an environment for the provision of care within clinical microsystems with attention to quality, safety, information systems and health care ethics.
- Use clinical reasoning, critical thinking, and ethical decision-making based on nursing science, related theory, and current evidence, to inform the delivery of care across the lifespan.
- Participate in inter- and intra-professional communication and collaboration in partnership with individuals and populations to deliver evidence-based, patient-centered care.
- Translate knowledge from research, benchmarking, quality improvement and other relevant sources into practice to address health related problems.
- Synthesize knowledge from the humanities and sciences in planning and providing care that is guided by the values of altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, global citizenship, and social justice.
- Demonstrate professional growth, through the cultivation of self-awareness, responsibility, accountability, creativity, leadership and commitment to lifelong learning.
- Advocate for patients, consumers, and the nursing profession through involvement in the political process, and health/patient care policies and practices.
The baccalaureate degree in nursing at Fairfield University is accredited by the:
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
One Dupont Circle NW, Suite 530
Washington, DC 20036
Bachelor of Science Curriculum
The four components of the Egan School undergraduate nursing program are:
Nursing students must complete the core curriculum that is required of all Fairfield undergraduates.
Natural and Social Sciences
Students take one semester of chemistry and three semesters of biology that include anatomy and physiology, and microbiology. Because the social sciences form an important part of the foundation for nursing practice, students also take developmental psychology and a social and behavioral science elective.
Classroom instruction in nursing theory begins in the freshman year and continues throughout the undergraduate program. Instruction in nursing skills begins in the sophomore year. Nursing courses include theoretical and clinical components. With each semester, clinical hours increase. To insure that students obtain the breadth and depth of clinical experience needed, the school has associations with many clinical facilities, including private hospitals, veterans' hospitals, clinics, outpatient departments, rehabilitation centers, public health departments, long-term care facilities, home care agencies, community health centers, and schools. Students provide their own transportation to clinical agencies, and all costs associated with clinical placements including travel, parking, background checks, and health and professional requirements, are the responsibility of the student.
Free electives in the curriculum provide students with an opportunity to explore topics of interest including the liberal arts, nursing, and minor options.
The curricula leading to degrees in nursing from Fairfield University requires students to possess essential non-academic skills and functions required to engage in clinical practice. It is within the sole determination of Fairfield University and the Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing and Health Studies to assess and determine whether a student meets these skills and functions. Eligibility requirements for participation and completion in the nursing program shall include, but are not limited to, the following six capabilities:
Critical thinking ability sufficient for clinical judgment; student must be able to examine, interpret, analyze, and synthesize material for problem solving and evaluation of patient situations and own performance.
- Ability to assess, plan, establish priorities, implement and evaluate patient outcomes.
- Ability to calculate appropriate dosages for specific medications.
- Ability to use good judgment in establishing priorities and making appropriate decisions in client care.
Interpersonal and Communication
Relationship and communication abilities appropriate for interacting sensitively with individuals, families, groups and inter-professional team members from a variety of social, cultural, and intellectual backgrounds. Ability to accurately and clearly communicate appropriate information regarding evidence-based practice, patient status and response to care, both orally and in writing.
- Interpersonal skills to communicate effectively with patients/families and members of the (inter-professional) healthcare team.
- Ability to gather and record patient data concerning history, health status and response to care.
- Ability to follow and give verbal and written reports, presentations and directions to patients, families, and members of the inter-professional health care team.
Ability to observe, identify, and obtain information in order to assess, plan, provide and evaluate nursing interventions; student must possess adequate sensory abilities or be able to demonstrate appropriate and safe compensation for deficits.
- Visual acuity necessary to observe physical changes in health status, prepare and administer medications, and gather reference material and patient data from written and digital sources.
- Auditory ability to differentiate normal and abnormal heart, lung, & bowel sounds.
- Tactile ability to differentiate temperature and anomalies of the skin, as well as unsafe patient care devices.
- Cognitive ability sufficient to read and understand directions, assignments, and patient documents.
Motor Skills and Mobility
Sufficient mobility, including the gross and fine motors skills needed to provide safe and competent nursing care, both routine and emergency.
- Sufficient motor skills necessary to perform physical care such as ambulating, positioning, and assisting with activities of daily living as needed.
- Fine motor skills needed for basic assessment such as palpation, auscultation, and percussion.
- Mobility sufficient to carry out patient care procedures such as suctioning, positioning, and drawing up medication into a syringe.
Emotional stability for providing care safely to patients and their families within a rapidly changing and often stressful healthcare environment; the ability to monitor and identify one's own and others' emotions, and use the information to guide thinking and actions.
- Integrity needed to make ethical decisions and honor the professional code of nursing.
- Emotional ability to maintain calm in a crisis and emergency situation.
- Ability to develop mature relationships with the health care team and modify behavior in response to constructive feedback.
Physical Health and Abilities
Physical health and stamina sufficient to provide care to diverse patient populations.
- Sufficient energy and ability to manage a typical patient assignment in a variety of settings for a full seven hour clinical day.
- Physical health necessary to care for those who are immuno-compromised, incapacitated, and/or otherwise vulnerable.
Standards for Admission and Progression in the Nursing Curriculum
Students are required to successfully complete clinical practica involving direct patient care. By accepting admission in the Marion Peckham Egan School of Nursing, the student understands the program eligibility and progression requirements. Nursing students must follow all University educational policies and general regulations including those regarding academic progress.
The science and psychology courses are sequential and are prerequisites to designated nursing courses. Strong foundational knowledge in the science and psychology courses is critical to success in the nursing program. Thus, students may not progress to the next semester with an incomplete in a prerequisite course. BI 0107 Human Anatomy and Physiology I, BI 0108 Human Anatomy and Physiology II, BI 0151 Elements of Microbiology, CH 0084 General Chemistry for Health Science, and PY 0111 Developmental Psychology for Non-Majors must be completed successfully with a minimum grade of C (73) for students to progress to the next semester in the course sequence for the nursing major. The final grade for CH 0084 is calculated based on grades for both the lab and theory portion.
Students unable to complete these courses successfully are expected to repeat coursework in the next semester or the summer session immediately following or they will be dismissed from the Egan School. Students consistently achieving minimum passing grades in prerequisite courses will be placed on Academic Warning. Students who do not obtain a grade of C or better in a prerequisite course may repeat the course once. If a grade of C or better in the repeated class is not earned, then the student will be dismissed from the program. A grade of less than C in three or more prerequisite courses will result in dismissal from the nursing program in the Egan School.
Nursing courses are sequential, beginning with foundational courses and progressing to increasing levels of complexity and challenge throughout the program. As students move through the curriculum, new content is integrated and builds upon previously learned material. Thus, all students must earn the minimum grade of C+ (77) in all nursing courses to progress to the next semester and continue in the program.
Further, students may not progress to the next semester with an incomplete in any nursing course. Students who do not obtain a grade of C+ or better in a nursing course may repeat the course once. A grade of less than C+ in two nursing courses (including a repeated course) will result in dismissal from the Egan School. The clinical component of all clinical nursing courses is graded on a pass/fail basis. Students must pass the theory and clinical component of a course to pass the entire course, regardless of their grade in the theory component. Students who fail to earn the minimum grade in either component of a clinical course must repeat the entire course.
Health and Professional Requirements
All clinical agencies require documentation of various professional and health information. Nursing students must be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) before starting clinical in their sophomore year and remain certified throughout the nursing program. Students must receive their certification through either the Health Care Provider course offered through the American Heart Association or the Professional Rescuer or CPR/AED for Lifeguard Certification course offered through the American Red Cross. All health requirements and OSHA training requirements must be met each year prior to clinical practica.
To attend clinical, students must have a physical examination, a non-reactive TB skin test or a negative QuantiFERON Gold Blood Test (if positive results, proof of a clear chest x-ray must be provided), and proof of influenza vaccine yearly. Proof of immunization or immunity must be provided for the following: hepatitis, varicella, measles, mumps, rubella, and diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis. History of disease is not acceptable as proof of immunity; laboratory results of blood titers must be provided. CastleBranch.com is the immunization tracking system used by Fairfield University nursing students to house their health information. Students are responsible for uploading information and keeping all required information updated throughout their clinical experience. Students unable to comply with agency requirements will be dismissed from the program. All costs associated with agency requirements are the responsibility of the student.
Student Background Checks and Drug Testing
The undergraduate nursing program at Fairfield University requires the successful completion of the clinical component of the curriculum. Most clinical sites require students to complete a criminal background check and drug screening before participating in clinical placements. In addition, national certification agencies may determine that persons with criminal convictions are not eligible to sit for national certification examinations and state laws may restrict/prohibit those with criminal convictions from acquiring a professional license to practice following graduation. Therefore, it is the policy of the Egan School that all admitted students must satisfactorily complete a criminal background check and drug screens prior to participating in the clinical component of the curriculum. These will be completed at the student's expense at a location designated by the University, and may be required more than once depending on the agency. Fairfield University and the Egan School have no obligation to refund tuition or otherwise accommodate students in the event that a criminal, drug, or immunization history renders the student ineligible to complete required courses or clinical placement(s).
All nursing students participate in a comprehensive nationally standardized assessment program. This total testing program allows close monitoring of student progress and serves as the basis for individualized advisement. A testing fee will be included for all nursing students in appropriate semesters.
All nursing students graduate with a bachelor of science degree in nursing. To obtain initial licensure as a Registered Nurse, students apply to the State Board of Nursing in the state in which they plan to practice. In addition, students register to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) at a conveniently located testing center.
All students are expected to pass the licensure exam on the first try. Application procedures vary by state. Information may be obtained on the National Council of State Boards of Nursing website: http://www.ncsbn.org.
Graduation from the nursing major does not insure eligibility for state licensure. A candidate who has been convicted of a felony or another crime in any state may be required to submit documentation about this conviction to the State Board of Nursing in which licensure is sought. Each State Board of Nursing reserves the right to make a decision on whether to grant licensure to practice as a registered nurse.
Sigma Theta Tau, International Honor Society
The Mu Chi Chapter of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing was established at Fairfield University in 1992. Since then, the Chapter has grown to nearly 1000 members. The Society is committed to fostering nursing leadership, research and creativity. Standards for membership include demonstrated excellence in scholarship and/or exceptional achievement in nursing.
NS 0110 Introduction to Professional Nursing3 Credits
This course serves as a foundation to the development of the nurse as a professional person. Central to this is the awareness and acceptance of self. The process of clinical reasoning as an approach to the planning and delivery of nursing care to individuals, families, groups and communities is introduced. Discussion of nursing's history and accomplishments serves as the cornerstone for professional behaviors, including: scholarship, communication, collaboration, personal responsibility, accountability, integration of evidence based practice and peer- and self-evaluation. 42 theory hours.
NS 0112 Healthcare Delivery Systems3 Credits
Attributes: EDCG Educational Studies Cognate, EDDV Educational Studies Diversity, HSTE Health Studies: Traditions, Delivery, and Ethics
The health care delivery system is explored from a historical, economic, political, and health information technology perspective. Emphasis is given to social, ethical, and legal aspects of the current system that remain unresolved, such as access to care, health disparities, and equity. The history and progression of healthcare reform and its influence on our current healthcare system performance will be analyzed. Global health issues and their impact on the delivery of health care services are discussed, along with consumer use of complementary and alternative therapies. This course is designed to give an inter-professional perspective to students interested in health care from any field of study. 42 theory hours.
NS 0250 Dimensions of Professional Nursing3 Credits
Attributes: UDIV U.S. Diversity
Prerequisites: Connecticut RN license or academic transcript and approval of advisor.
This course is designed to facilitate career advancement of the registered nurse to the baccalaureate level. This is the first course in the RN/BSN completion program. Consideration of values, culture, philosophy and personal goals are examined as part of the student's professional development. Communication, clinical reasoning and conflict resolution techniques will be utilized to foster positive inter-professional teams. Students will demonstrate an evidence based approach to analyze current healthcare issues including social justice and diversity in professional practice. 42 theory hours.
NS 0252 Health Assessment for Registered Nurses3 Credits
Prerequisite: Connecticut RN license.
This course enhances knowledge and skills required to perform health assessments for patients throughout the lifespan. Health assessment focuses not only on physiological components, but also on the more holistic cultural, spiritual, developmental, nutritional, genetic, and mental status assessments. Clinical reasoning, communication and documentation using electronic medical records are also essential components of this course. Students expand their skills in interviewing while learning how to perform health histories, and complete physical examinations through course lectures, discussions, simulations, and supervised and individual practice in classroom and laboratory modules. 28 theory, 28 lab hours.
NS 0270 Health Assessment4 Credits
This course introduces students to the knowledge and skills required to perform health assessments for patients throughout the lifespan. Health assessment focuses not only on physiological components, but also on the more holistic cultural, spiritual, developmental, nutritional, genetic, and mental status assessments. Clinical reasoning, communication and documentation using electronic medical records are also essential components of this course. Students expand their skills in interviewing while learning how to perform health histories, and complete physical examinations through course lectures, discussions, simulations, and supervised and individual practice in classroom and laboratory modules. 28 theory hours, 56 lab hours.
NS 0270L Health Assessment Lab0 Credits
NS 0272 Geriatric Nursing4 Credits
This course focuses on evidence-based nursing care of older adults living in long-term care settings. Normal physiological changes of aging and related assessment skills will be incorporated and evaluated using standardized assessment tools. Management of common geriatric care problems will be emphasized. Particular focus will be placed on the ethical and spiritual concerns of vulnerable older adult populations. Students will reflect upon how the nursing role merges with life goals, philosophy and meaning to develop professional behaviors consistent with these aspects of life. 42 theory hours, 42 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0272C Geriatric Nursing Clinical0 Credits
NS 0301 Health and Wellness3 Credits
This course explores factors that influence health and wellness throughout the lifespan. Epidemiology and evidence based practice provide a framework for the assessment of risk factors. How people make health-related decisions, what risks threaten their health, and reasons for adopting particular lifestyles are examined. Key elements considered essential to providing culturally competent care are reviewed, in addition to increasing awareness about health and healthcare disparities. Social determinants of health, communication, and other wellness concepts are explored. 42 theory hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0301C Health and Wellness Clinical0 Credits
NS 0303 Basic Pathophysiology and Pharmacology3 Credits
This course focuses on the study of physiological and biological life processes with a focus on deviations from normal, including exemplar cases. Manifestations of disease and alterations in all body systems are discussed. Pharmacologic therapies commonly used to manage disease are presented, including content on the recognition of side effects, adverse effects, allergy, and overdose. 42 theory hours.
NS 0305 Mental Health Nursing4 Credits
The focus of this course is the nursing care of individuals with psychiatric disorders. A holistic approach based on theories of human behavior and personality as well as neurobiological, developmental, trauma-informed, and recovery-oriented models are used to plan and implement care in a variety of settings. Factors that may contribute to an individual developing a psychiatric disorder are discussed and ethical, legal and cultural issues are considered when planning care. The development of a therapeutic nurse-patient relationship and use of communication techniques to promote healing are emphasized. 42 theory hours, 42 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0305C Mental Health Nursing Clinical0 Credits
NS 0307 Fundamentals of Nursing Care4 Credits
In this course, evidence based practice is used as a guide for students to learn how to provide safe and effective patient care across the lifespan. In the laboratory setting, students perform basic to advanced psychomotor skills related to nursing care. Students also learn to effectively use an electronic health record to document clinical findings and care. 28 theory hours, 56 lab hours.
NS 0307L Fundamentals of Nursing Care Lab0 Credits
NS 0310 Foundations of Research for Evidence Based Practice3 Credits
This course provides an introduction to the research process and its application to scholarship in practice settings. Students learn to be consumers of research through a review of the literature, critique of research, and identification of methods appropriate to study specific practice-related problems. An emphasis is placed on inter-professional perspectives and writing skills. Consideration is given to ethical, economic, technological, and statistical dimensions. Application is made to clinical research and evidence-based practice. 42 theory hours.
NS 0312 Medical Surgical Nursing I5 Credits
This course introduces the student to illnesses common in the adult population. The nursing process, theory, and evidence-based practice, are incorporated with clinical practice. An emphasis is placed on clinical reasoning and prioritizing patient care. Throughout the course, informatics is integrated as part of the documentation process for clinical experiences. 42 theory hours, 84 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0312C Medical Surgical Nursing I Clinical0 Credits
NS 0314 Maternal and Newborn Nursing4 Credits
Attributes: WSGF Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies: Gender Focused
This course is designed to provide students with the opportunity to assist the patient and family to cope with changes in reproductive and gynecological needs. The childbearing cycle including: pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum, lactation, care of the healthy newborn and perinatal complications, and theoretical models will be explored. Cultural, ethical and legal aspects of reproductive health across the lifespan will be examined. Emphasis is on development of clinical reasoning and evidence based practice skills related to the nursing care of women and childbearing families. 42 theory hours, 42 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0314C Maternal and Newborn Nursing Clinical0 Credits
NS 0321 Professional Nursing Leadership3 Credits
This course immerses students in issues and concepts central to professional nursing. Political, social, and legal systems that affect the image of nursing and influence its role definition are examined. Organizational dynamics and theories of leadership are considered, with case studies and concurrent clinical experiences providing the foundation for theory integration. Focus is placed on patient safety and quality improvement. 42 theory hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0323 Pediatric Nursing4 Credits
This course utilizes a family centered care approach to provide an understanding of the unique anatomical, physiologic, and developmental differences among neonates, infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. Social and cultural influences on children and their families are discussed in addition to assessment, genetics, health promotion, injury prevention, acute and chronic illness, and palliative and end-of-life care. Students are challenged to implement effective communication techniques, clinical reasoning skills, and evidenced based practices when planning holistic and safe care for children and their families in a wide variety of clinical settings. 42 theory hours, 42 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0323C Pediatric Nursing Clinical0 Credits
NS 0325 Medical Surgical Nursing II5 Credits
This course continues the study of nursing care for patients with illnesses common in the adult population. The theoretical framework of the nursing process is used to demonstrate effectiveness in planning and providing holistic evidence-based nursing care for diverse individuals and populations. Professional communication and interprofessional collaboration will be utilized in the delivery of patient-centered care. 42 theory hours, 84 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0325C Medical Surgical Nursing II Clinical0 Credits
NS 0330 Population Health4 Credits
Attributes: HSTE Health Studies: Traditions, Delivery, and Ethics, LCEL LACS Minor: Elective, WDIV World Diversity
This course focuses on the care of people in their homes, in communities, and around the world. Principals of disease prevention, risk reduction, and health promotion are applied to diverse populations in the USA and worldwide. Students synthesize prior experience and learning with public health theory to provide collaborative, quality care across the lifespan. Using an ecological model, students engage in evidence based care for individuals, families, groups, communities and populations. Global issues related to the impact of social policies on healthcare and health equity, and needs of vulnerable populations are also examined. 42 theory hours, 42 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0330C Population Health Clinical0 Credits
NS 0332 Transition to Professional Nursing4 Credits
This capstone course addresses provision of holistic, evidence based care to patients and families in a variety of health care settings. Students have the opportunity to work as a member of the health care team with an individual agency preceptor across the course. The focus is on fostering student growth in clinical reasoning, clinical reasoning and leadership development to promote autonomous professional nursing practice within the clinical setting. Students develop a Capstone Project based on an identified learning need, for the patient, the patient's family, or for the nursing staff. 168 clinical hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0332C Transition to Professional Nursing Clinical0 Credits
NS 0356 Transition Seminar for Professional Nursing3 Credits
This capstone course challenges the RN student to facilitate change in a clinical setting and positively influence patient outcomes. Students engage in collaborative interprofessional work with members of the healthcare team, and reflect on their own role as a professional nurse. Through this course, students demonstrate evidence based practice, leadership, and clinical reasoning to make the transition to an autonomous professional level of practice. 42 theory hours. (*indicates concurrency allowed)
NS 0360 Critical Care Nursing3 Credits
Prerequisite: NS 0325.
This elective course is an introduction to critical care nursing. The focus is placed on nursing diagnoses and evidence based practice in the care of the critically ill patient. Common issues such as ethical dilemmas, psychosocial challenges, and symptom management are discussed. Relevant nursing implications for the care of critically ill patients are addressed. Students also gain skills in advanced critical care, hemodynamic monitoring, and ventilator management. 42 theory hours.
NS 0385 Special Topics (Shell)1-3 Credits
This intermediate-level course focuses on a specific issue or topic within nursing. In successive offerings, the content of this course will vary considerably. Thus, students may take more than one section of the course provided the content is different.
NS 0399 Independent Study1-6 Credits
Through individually designed projects or activities, students work with a faculty member to study a specific area in depth. Enrollment by permission only.
Beauvais, Associate Dean
Oliver, Director of Undergraduate Social Work
Pomarico, Adult Program Director
Roney, Undergraduate Nursing Program Director
Assistant Professors, VA Nursing Academy
Assistant Professors of the Practice
Chaplik, Assistant Dean
Instructors of the Practice