Feb 06, 2023  
2022-2023 Nursing Student Handbook 
    
2022-2023 Nursing Student Handbook

Technology, Academic, Clinical and Progression Policies and Procedures


Technology Policy

Mobile Technology Devices Policy

Mobile Technology Devices include but are not limited to smart phones such as:  Android, IPhone, and other portable devices such as laptop, I-touch and/or I-pad, smart watch technology.

Mobile information technology devices may be used in clinical, simulation, and classrooms if permitted by the agency and faculty. If those devices also include a cell phone, instant messaging/text messaging, or camera feature, these features are NOT ALLOWED to be used in any of these settings. The use of the internet through the use of these devices in these settings is limited to educational purposes ONLY.

Students are expected to comply with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations.  All patient related information (simulated and/or real) is confidential. Patient related information (simulated and/or real) is defined as all information related to the health, business, or personal matters of the patient or patient’s family.  This includes but is not limited to Protected Health Information (PHI) that is based on a patient’s diagnosis, examination, treatment, observation, or conversation, and information maintained in data bases that contain diagnostic or treatment related information.  (*Dismissal offence: See student handbook at http://catalog.widener.edu for details)

Cleaning of mobile technology devices must comply with the clinical agency’s infection control policy and procedures. **If the device becomes contaminated it should be cleaned with the recommended disinfectant. If a patient is in isolation, the mobile technology device cannot be taken into the patient’s room. Hand hygiene is the best method of preventing transmission of disease.

Students who do not comply with this policy will be subject to possible consequences as stated in the SON handbook

RECORDING POLICY

Unauthorized student recording of classroom or other academic activities (including advising sessions or office hours) is prohibited. Unauthorized recording is unethical and may also be a violation of University policy and state law. Students requesting the use of assistive technology as an accommodation should contact the Office of Accessibility Services. Unauthorized use of classroom recordings – including distributing or posting them – is also prohibited.  Under the US Copyright law, faculty own the copyright to instructional materials – including those resources created specifically for the purposes of instruction, such as syllabi, lectures and lecture notes, and presentations. Other than for their own course uses, students cannot copy, reproduce, display, or distribute these materials. Students who engage in unauthorized recording, unauthorized use of a recording, or unauthorized distribution of instructional materials will be referred to the appropriate Associate Dean.

These Guidelines are effective as of June 2022, and may be amended, revised or revoked by the University or School of Nursing in either’s sole discretion at any time.

COMPUTER LAPTOP REQUIREMENTS

  • MAC: mac OS versions greater than 10.15 (Catalina) Only genuine versions of Mac Operating Systems are supported.
  • PC: Operating System: 32-bit and 64-bit Versions of Windows 10 or 11
  • Updated Internet Browser(s): Firefox, Chrome, and/or Edge
  • Adobe Reader DC and Adobe Flash Player (Free Downloads)
  • WIFI enabled and Ethernet cable
  • A fully charged battery and plug; must last 4hrs (external battery recommended if not)

          *A Netbook/Tablet (i.e. IPad, Chromebook, etc.) is NOT acceptable as a substitute for a laptop

 

Academic Policies and Procedures

Progression Policy

Students must meet the pre and co-requisites for each nursing course.  In order to progress into junior year, student must have completed all required and elective courses with a ‘C’ or better (not a C-), and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 (not rounded) or higher.

Lower Division Policies

  1. Nursing prerequisites and electives may be repeated only once (either at Widener or off-campus) following either: a) a grade less than ‘C’ and/or withdrawal or grade less than a B for courses taken off campus. A withdrawal (either at Widener or off-campus) counts as an attempt. The repeat attempt requires written permission from the school dean or dean’s designee on the Repetition of Course forms.  If, on the repeat attempt, the student does not complete the course with a minimal grade of ‘C’ (not C-) or B if taken off campus or withdraws from the course, the student will be dismissed from the School of Nursing BSN program.
  2. Biology 121 and 122 or corresponding transfer courses must be successfully completed not more than five years prior to entry to upper division (junior year).
  3. Matriculated students may take a maximum of nine semester credits off campus only with special permission from the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs or the Assistant Dean of Student Services and the university’s Associate Provost.  Course Transfer Authorization form must be completed for all courses taken off campus. Students must achieve a grade of B or better on all courses taken off campus.
  4. NURS 205/206 and NURS 261/262 must be completed in the semester immediately preceding the start of the junior year. Sophomore students who do not progress but who have taken NURS 205/206 and/or NURS 261/262 will be required to repeat those courses in the semester immediately preceding junior year in order to move to upper division.

Upper Division Policies

  1. Students must achieve a Widener University cumulative GPA of 3.0 (not rounded) and a grade of ‘C’ or higher (not a C-) on all lower division prerequisite and elective courses (All courses listed for the freshman and sophomore years) for admission into the upper division. 
  2. Students must demonstrate compliance with all clinical requirements as specified in the School of Nursing Undergraduate Student Handbook. Students who have not completed the appropriate clinical requirements by the end of sophomore year and junior year will not be able to progress.
  3. Students must have successfully completed the pre-requisite and elective courses by the end of spring or summer semester of the sophomore year. See curriculum grid. 
  4. All Widener students must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 (not rounded) or higher to progress into junior year.
  5. Students are responsible to have their official transcripts from all other institutions sent to the Registrar’s Office by the first day of the semester immediately preceding attendance in the class.   Academic deficiencies may result in deferring progression into the Junior year.  Students who are enrolled in summer school to complete prerequisite courses may submit a letter signed by the course instructor designating the grade earned in the course or an unofficial transcript to the Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Programs. An official transcript verifying the grade earned must be forwarded as soon as possible Students may not begin the Junior year until documentation of all lower division requirements has been received by the School of Nursing.
  6. Documentation of compliance with all of clinical requirements, including:
    1. Immunizations: 
      1. Tetanus/diphtheria/pertsussis (tDAP) within 10 years
      2. Meningitis (required for students less than 25 years of age)
      3. COVID Vaccine
    2. Titers ~ serologic proof of immunity
      1. MMR
      2. Varicella
      3. Hepatitis B
    3. ​Physical Examination
    4. Criminal Background Investigation through agency designated by the School of Nursing (within 6 months of beginning clinicals)
    5. FBI Criminal Check
    6. Child Abuse Clearance for Pennsylvania
    7. 10 Panel Drug Screen (within 6 months of beginning clinicals)
    8. Quantiferon (required annually)
    9. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Certification (American Heart Association Health Care Provider) 2 year certification or American Red Cross Health Care Provider 2 year certification
    10. Personal Health Insurance (documentation required annually)

Failure to meet these requirements may result in the student being unable to progress in the curriculum.

Nursing Progression Policies

  1. Nursing prerequisites and electives may be repeated only once following either a grade of less than ‘C’ or withdrawal. The repeat attempt requires written permission from the school dean or dean’s designee on the “Repetition of Course” form. If, on the repeat attempt, the student does not complete the course with a minimal grade of ‘C’ or withdraws from the course, the student will be dismissed from the School of Nursing BSN program.

  2. BIOL 121 and BIOL 122 or corresponding transfer courses must be successfully completed not more than five years prior to entry to upper division (junior year).

  3. Students enrolled at Widener in a major other than nursing who wish to be considered for the school of nursing BSN program must fulfill the following requirements: (1) successfully complete CHEM 105 and CHEM 106 with a grade of ‘C’ or higher, (2) earn a grade of ‘C’ or higher in any courses that are part of the required nursing curriculum, and (3) achieve a cumulative GPA of 2.75 in their present major (see “Change in Curriculum” section of current catalog). A cumulative GPA of 3.0 must be attained for entry into junior-level nursing courses. Students with a GPA of less than 2.9 at the end of the fall semester sophomore year may not progress to the spring semester nursing courses NURS 205/NURS 206 and NURS 261/NURS 262.  See https://catalog.widener.edu/  for details.

  4. Matriculated students may take a maximum of nine semester credits off campus. The associate dean of undergraduate programs or the assistant dean approval must be acquired for all courses taken off campus prior to the start of the class. A “Course Transfer Authorization” must be completed for all courses taken off campus. See Undergraduate Student Handbook for more details.

  5. NURS 205/NURS 206 and NURS 261/NURS 262 must be completed in the semester immediately preceding the start of the junior year. Sophomore students who do not progress but who have taken NURS 205/NURS 206 or NURS 261/NURS 262 are required to repeat those courses in the semester immediately preceding the junior year.

  6. Theory grades are calculated per the course syllabus, and are reported as a letter grade. Students are required to earn a grade of “C” or higher (not a C-) in the theory component of all nursing courses, including clinical and non-clinical required courses in order to successfully complete, or pass the course. The minimum numeric score required to earn a grade of “C” in any nursing course is 75.0.  Final and exam grades are not rounded.

  7. Laboratory or clinical grades are evaluated per the course syllabus and reported as “pass” or “fail”. A grade of “pass” in the clinical/laboratory component of a course is required to successfully complete, or pass, the course.

  8. Students failing either the classroom or clinical component of a nursing course must repeat the course in its entirety, including classroom and clinical components.

  9. Students who withdraw from one nursing course with co-requisite requirements before midterm must withdraw from the other co requisite course(s) as well. For progression purposes, withdrawal from one course and its co-requisites will be considered as one withdrawal.

  10. Students are permitted only one unsuccessful attempt to complete a nursing course throughout the program. Both withdrawals and failures count as an attempt.

    1. A grade of less than “C” in the same nursing course twice will result in dismissal from the nursing program.

    2. A withdrawal from a nursing course and a grade of less than “C” on a subsequent attempt after a previous withdrawal from the same course will result in dismissal from the nursing program.

    3. A grade of less than “C” in any nursing course with subsequent withdrawal from the same course on the second attempt.
    4. A grade of less than “C” in any two nursing courses will result in dismissal from the nursing program.
    5. A withdrawal from a nursing course, followed by a subsequent withdrawal from any other nursing course will result in dismissal from the nursing programA withdrawal from a nursing course, followed by a subsequent failure of any nursing course will result in dismissal from the nursing program.
  11. Students who are unsuccessful in a nursing course must repeat the course in the same semester it is offered in the following year. Students may not move forward to subsequent courses until all prior courses from the semester the student is enrolled is complete. If the course withdraw or failure occurs in the spring semester, senior year, the student must also repeat NURS 475 with the failed or withdrawn course.

  12. Students who are dismissed from the School of Nursing will be able to apply for readmission to the School of Nursing after three years as per the University Catalog.

  13. Students who are dismissed from the nursing program for failure to meet academic progression requirements may continue in another major within the University if their grade point meets requirements for that major.

Progression to Upper Division

Students must achieve a Widener University cumulative GPA of 3.0 and a grade of ‘C’ or higher on all lower division prerequisite courses listed for the freshman and sophomore years, including those courses meeting elective requirements in the nursing curriculum. Students must demonstrate compliance with all clinical requirements as specified in the Clinical Requirement Section of this handbook.

Progression  Criteria for RN to BSN to MSN Option

Students must meet the pre and co-requisites for each nursing course.  In order to progress, student must have completed all required and elective courses with a ‘C’ or better (not a C-), and have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher.  

Nursing courses may be repeated only once following either: a) a grade less than ‘C’ and/or withdrawal. The repeat attempt requires written permission from the school dean or dean’s designee on the Repetition of Course forms.  If, on the repeat attempt, the student does not complete the course with a minimal grade of ‘C’ (not C-) or withdraws from the course, the student will be dismissed from the School of Nursing RN to BSN program.

  1. Theory, or course grades are calculated per the course syllabus, and are reported as a letter grade. Students are required to earn a grade of “C” or higher (not C-) in the theory component of all nursing courses, including clinical and non-clinical required courses in order to successfully complete, or pass the course. The minimum numeric score required to earn a grade of “C” in any nursing course is 75.0.  Final and exam grades are not rounded. 
  2. Students are permitted only two attempts to successfully complete a nursing course; a withdrawal counts as an attempt. A student who earns a grade of less than “C” (including C-) in the same nursing course twice will be dismissed from the nursing program. Likewise, a student who withdraws from a nursing course and earns a grade of less than “C” (including C-) on a subsequent attempt at the same course will be dismissed from the nursing program.
  3. A grade of less than “C” (including C-) in any two nursing courses will result in dismissal from the nursing program.
  4. Students who are dismissed from the nursing program for failure to meet academic progression requirements may continue in another major within the University if their grade point meets requirements for that major.

Progression Criteria for Accelerated BSN and Transfer Students

Once accepted, the student must successfully complete NURS 125, 202, 205/206, and 261/262 with a grade of C or higher (not C-) at Widener University, and achieve a Widener University cumulative GPA of 3.0 (not rounded) or higher prior to progressing into clinical nursing courses, which begin in the semester 2. Accelerated students follow the same policies and procedures as the traditional BSN students.

Progression Interrupted

Students who cannot continue in the program because of a course failure or withdrawal in a NURS 300 or NURS 400 level course may re-enroll in the program within a period of 12 months from the point of exit.  Leave of Absence (LOA) will be granted only by the Associate Provost due to either medical care or compelling personal hardship. Students who take a LOA after completing NURS 205/206 and NURS 261/262 may be required to repeat those courses prior to the start of clinical rotations. Students who do not return after 12 months will be required to repeat all nursing courses. 

Progression Dismissal Policies

The University dismissal policies are outlined in the Widener University Undergraduate Catalog under the section marked Academic Standing. The School of Nursing adheres to the University dismissal policies.   Students will be dismissed from the School of Nursing for failure to meet the progression policies regarding failures as well as any of the following situations:

  • GPA below 2.0
  • Failure to complete clinical requirements
  • A violation of the University Student Code of Conduct (see Student Handbook at http://catalog.widener.edu).
  • Failure to keep any contractual stipulation imposed by the Academic Program Director or the Dean of the School of Nursing.
  • Violations are specified in the student conduct section of this handbook.

Withdrawal

The drop period for the spring semester senior nursing courses will be three weeks before the end of these courses, because they are offered in an abbreviated format. The date will be specified in the course syllabus. For all other courses, it is as designated by the University.

Refunds for courses are determined by the University. (See University Catalog at http://catalog.widener.edu). The effective date used for all adjustment of charges will be the date that written notice of the withdrawal is received by the appropriate program office of Widener University.

 

Grading Policies

GRADE CALCULATION

The method for calculating the final grade is specified in each course syllabus.  Students who have questions regarding calculations of grades are referred to their faculty member.  Selected nursing courses will have a 75% (no rounding) average required in objective testing that must be obtained.  Courses with this policy will so state in the course syllabus provided at the beginning of the course.  In this case, grades from other assignments will be included only after a grade of 75 on objective testing is achieved as stated in the course syllabus.

COMPUTERIZED TESTING PROGRAM

Throughout the curriculum students will be required to take nationally-normed computerized exams developed by ATI Nursing Education (ATI). The cost of this program is charged to the students’ tuition bill each semester either as a course fee or a one per year/semester fee. Such fees are non-refundable. Students will take the ATI examinations as specified in their course syllabi.  Course syllabi will also specify calculation of the ATI score(s) as a part of the total course grade.

GRADING SCALE FOR THE SCHOOL OF NURSING

Passing Grades

Failing Grades

A    93-100

C-  70-74
A-   90-92  D    60-69
B+  87-89 F    Below 60
B    83-86     
B-   80-82  
C+  77-79  
C    75-76  

 

The use of a whole letter or plus/minus grading scale is the decision of each individual faculty member. A faculty member may choose not to differentiate grades using the plus/minus system for any particular course.

 

EXAM RETAKE POLICY FOR GRADUATING SENIORS

A senior student who achieves a final course grade of less than ‘C’ in a class during the last semester prior to graduation will be eligible, based upon the criteria below, to retake the final examination one time in that course, in order to attempt to achieve a passing final course grade. 

In order to retake a final examination, all of the following criteria must be met:

  1. The student’s theoretical average in the course before taking the final examination was 75.0 (not rounding) or above and the student’s earned grade below 75 on the final examination was the sole reason for a final course grade of C-, D or F;
  2. The student has achieved satisfactory passing clinical performance evaluations in all nursing courses.

Due Process Policy

Students in the School of Nursing are afforded opportunities to express their interests, issues, and concerns through student representation as voting members on selected SON standing committees, including Undergraduate Programs Committee and Graduate Programs Committee. Students may also voice concerns by completion of Course and Faculty Evaluations at the end of each course. The School of Nursing due process policy and procedure designates a formal grade appeal policy.

  • Student concerns about final course grade (s) must be addressed through the formal Grade Appeal Policy 

Grievance issues related to discrimination and harassment, and or violation of the Widener Compact shall be addressed by the University policies and procedures outlined in the Undergraduate and Graduate University Catalogs.  Other issues or concerns should be addressed first with the faculty member, then with the director of the program and finally the Dean.

FORMAL GRADE APPEAL POLICY

It is the policy of the School of Nursing to allow students to appeal the final course grade if they believe their grade has been derived in a manner not consistent with the fair and equitable application of evaluation criteria specified in the syllabus. 

  • DEFINITION
    • A grade subject to the Grade Appeal Policy is a final grade the student believes to be derived in a manner not consistent with the fair and equitable application of grading criteria found in the course syllabus and/or a grade the student believes to have been miscalculated, again based on the criteria specified within the course syllabus.
  1. STUDENT PROCEDURE:
    1. The student will complete the Nursing Due Process Form  and take it to the faculty of record no later than two days after final grades are due to the University as published on the official university Academic Calendar to begin the formal grade appeal process.
    2. If an acceptable resolution does not occur within the next business day, the student may request that the Undergraduate/Graduate Program Committee consider the student’s grade appeal. The student sends the Due Process form and a narrative to the appropriate Program Committee through the office of the academic program director.
    3. Students may continue the classroom courses for which they are enrolled until the appeal process is completed, however they will be unable to begin or remain in clinical.
    4. Confidentiality shall be maintained by all persons. This is an essential component of the grievance procedure and due process

PROGRAM COMMITTEE PROCEDURE

  1. Upon receipt of a student’s Nursing Due Process Form , the Undergraduate/Graduate Program Committee reviews the material and considers the appeal at a meeting held within the first week after the Due Process form has been received. The faculty member of record for that course and section will be asked to provide documentation relevant to the appeal. After review, the committee will recommend that the student appeal be either supported or rejected.
  2. The chair of the Program Committee will present the recommendation to the Dean. The Dean will ensure that the Due Process Policy has been followed and share the appeal decision with the student within one week of receipt of the decision. The Dean’s decision is final.
  3. During the appeal process, the Program Committee may request a hearing with the student, the student’s advisor/ mentor, faculty member of record for that course and section and the academic program director.

 

Advisement

ACADEMIC ADVISING

All pre-licensure traditional, transfer and ABSN students are advised by the Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Programs beginning in the freshman year.  In addition, all students are assigned a faculty mentor upon admission to develop supportive relationships with their students in order to foster their academic success.  Students are encouraged to reach out to their faculty mentors for any issues.  Students may request a change in faculty mentor after consultation with the Director of Undergraduate Programs.

ACADEMIC RECORDS

Records for students are kept digitally only accessible only by Associate Dean, Director, faculty and staff in the School of Nursing. The record contains such information as course grades, clinical evaluations, correspondence, course planning forms, etc. The academic record is the property of the University. Student access to such records and disclosure of information contained in such records is governed by the Widener University Policy Pertaining to the Confidentiality of, Access to, and Disclosure of Student Record. Students are advised to review such policy for further information.

PRE-REGISTRATION

Pre-registration is completed online through Student Planning. Dates for pre-registration are posted on my.widener.edu. It is the students’ responsibility to access My Widener for their assigned date and time. Group mandatory advising meetings for all classes will be scheduled each semester.  Students must contact their mentors for an appointment to obtain approval and the mentor’s signature prior to attempting to register online. Students are advised to contact their mentors with any questions. Detailed information about the process is available on the Registrar’s home page. Repeated courses cannot be registered for online. Repetition of course form must be obtained from the Office of the Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Programs and submitted to Lipka Hall along with drop/add form to repeat a course.

CANCELLATION OF NURSING COURSES

The School of Nursing has the right to cancel any course with insufficient enrollment.

COURSE TRANSFER AUTHORIZATION

Matriculated students may take a maximum of nine semester credits off campus. The Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs or the Assistant Dean of Student Services approval must be acquired for all courses taken off campus prior to the start of class.  A minimum grade of B (not B-) must be earned in a course to have the credits transferred to the School of Nursing. This precludes taking a course on a pass/no pass basis.  A “Course Transfer Authorization” form must be completed for all courses taken off campus.

INDEPENDENT STUDY IN NURSING

An independent study is available for self-directed learners who have an interest in either a theoretical or clinical nursing topic in which they would like to pursue further study.  An independent study is student-initiated; the student must identify a faculty member willing to serve as the instructor prior to enrollment in the course.  The selection for the faculty member must be appropriate to the instructor’s area of expertise.  A faculty member will be responsible for approval of student objectives, criteria for evaluation, clinical supervision (if applicable), and final grade assignment.

Clinical activities may consist of observation or direct patient care.  Direct patient care activities must be supervised by a School of Nursing faculty member.  If a clinical activity is involved in the Independent Study, the faculty member will seek agency approval and initiate an agency contract through the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies, as appropriate.  Please note that students in the nursing program who are preclinical will not be permitted to develop an independent study with a clinical experience.

Determination of the appropriate credit allotment should be based on the learning objectives of the Independent Study.  Credits will be allocated on the basis of an estimated one hour/week of actual library research or other appropriate study activity per credit, or three hours of clinical activity per week/credit.  Evaluation methods are assigned in addition to the estimated hours of study required per credit.  A student may take no more than a total three credits of independent study in the nursing major.

PROCEDURE FOR INDEPENDENT STUDY

See School of Nursing Office for Independent Study Form.

  1. Independent study may be pursued by a sophomore, junior, or senior level students matriculated in the School of Nursing.  Students must register for Independent Study during the designated registration time on the academic calendar.
  2. A Proposal for Independent Study is student initiated.  At the outset of the independent study, students will submit to the faculty member a typed proposal for the independent study to include the topic for the independent study, along with specific objectives for the learning experience.
  3. Once the faculty member approves the objectives, the student and the faculty member will agree on the assignment of credits, and the method(s) of evaluation.  Following approval for the proposal by the faculty member, the contract for Independent study is submitted to the Academic Program Director for approval.  The contract must be signed by the student, faculty member, and Academic Program Director.  One copy will be placed in the student’s file, one copy will be kept by the faculty member, and one will be returned to the student.
  4. According to a prearranged schedule of meetings, the faculty member will work closely with the student to guide the student’s progress towards the accomplishment of proposal objectives.
  5. The faculty member is responsible to grade the independent study and submit the grade according to the university protocol.

State Board of Nursing Licensing Procedures

Please read ALL the forms and FOLLOW ALL directions carefully.  Forms are available in the Office of the School of Nursing.

  1. NURSING EDUCATION VERIFICATION FORM:
  • Your name MUST reflect the identification you will use for access to the testing center. Complete the date of birth and provide the last 4 numbers of your social security number. Return the form (see PA State Board Form ) to Mrs. Costello no later than May 1st. You will not be permitted to receive a temporary practice permit or receive permission for testing until this form is sent to the PA State Board of Nursing from ‘The Nursing Education Program’ (Widener University School of Nursing). The Nursing Education Verification Form will be forwarded to the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing ONLY after you have completed all requirements for graduation.
  1. PENNSYLVANIA EXAMINATION/GRADUATE TEMPORARY PRACTICE PERMIT APPLICATION
  1. SPECIAL ACCOMMODATIONS ​
  • If special accommodations are required for testing you MUST follow the directions on the ‘Request for Accommodations’ form, and RETURN THE FORM with your application for Exam/Graduate Temporary Practice Permit.
  1. NCLEX EXAMINATION
  • Register to take the licensure exam with PearsonVue.  $200 fee paid to PearsonVue.
  • You may register online at www.vue.com/nclex, or call (866) 496-2539 or submit an NCLEX registration form to NCLEX Operations, PO Box 64950, St. Paul, MN 55164-0950. You may download an NCLEX Examination Candidate Bulletin that will provide you with valuable information and the form. The SCHOOL CODE IS US25-55200. Only MONEY ORDERS or CERTIFIED CHECKS in the amount for the $200 will be accepted by the Center. You may register online or by telephone using a credit card.   You will need a small 2X2 or wallet size photo.
  1. NEW JERSEY & DELAWARE ​
  • Any graduate, who will sit for NCLEX at New Jersey or Delaware Examination Centers, must request for their transcript to be sent to the state where they are sitting, as well as give a copy of your application for verification to Mrs. Costello.   Delaware applicants, please complete and sign page 10 of the application and return to Ms. Costello for verification. Please see WebPages below.  When requesting a transcript you must specify, “AFTER DEGREE IS AWARDED”, or it will be sent too soon! 
  • For NJ: https://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/nur/Pages/default.aspx
  • For DE: https://dpr.delaware.gov/boards/nursing/exam/

6. PA STATE BOARD OF NURSING LICENSURE INFORMATION

  • Please note that the PA State Board of Nursing reserves the right to deny a license to any candidate who has been convicted of any felonious act.  Conviction includes a judgement, an admission of guilt or a plea of nolo contendere, probation without verdict, or incomplete Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD).  Further, the board shall not issue a license to any applicant who has been:
    • Convicted of a felonious act prohibited by the act of April 14, 1972 (P.L. 233, No. 64) known as The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act; or
    • Convicted of a felony relating to a controlled substance in a court of law of the United States or any other state, territory or country unless;
      • at least 10 years have elapsed from the date of conviction;
      • the applicant satisfactorily demonstrates to the Board, significant progress in personal rehabilitation since the conviction such that the license should not create a substantial risk of further violatins; and
      • the applicant otherwise satisfies the qualifications contained in this act.

Clinical and Lab Policies

CLINICAL REQUIREMENTS AND ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS FOR NURSING PRACTICE

Students must complete specified requirements to enter junior and senior clinical courses. These requirements are provided to the students in the spring of the sophomore year by the office of the Academic Program Director.  See Pre-Clinical Requirements for Graduate and Undergraduate Clinical Courses

Deadlines: Failure to meet deadlines established by the Academic Program Director may result in dismissal from the nursing program.

Essential functions are defined as those skills and competencies that all BSN and MSN students must have the capacity to demonstrate with or without reasonable accommodations. Students must have the physical and mental capacity to perform tasks in practice. Students must be able to meet the five competencies of the Essential Functions of Nursing Practice (see The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice  ) in order to attend clinical. Students must sign that they have reviewed the essential functions (see Essential Functions for Nursing Form ). If a student is unable or suspects that he/she is unable to complete any of the essential functions, the student is strongly encouraged to consult the Director of Disability Services as soon as possible.

CONFIDENTIALITY OF CRIMINAL BACKGROUND

School of Nursing administration will discuss criminal background information and drug/alcohol screen results of students on a need-to-know basis. This may include Widener University officials and personnel at Clinical Agencies who are responsible for placement of students. Criminal background results and drug screening results will be maintained in a file separate from the student’s academic file.

Criminal background results and drug/alcohol screen results of licensed nurses are subject to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Code Title 49. Professional and Vocation Standards issued by the Department of State. Section 14.1 (f) states that “Any hospital or health care facility, peer or colleague who has substantial evidence that a professional has an active addictive disease for which the professional is not receiving treatment, is diverting a controlled substance or is mentally or physically incompetent to carry out the duties of his license shall make or cause to be made a report to the Board”.

CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECK

The curricula for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science, and Doctor of Nursing Practice in Nursing degrees require clinical experiences to occur within hospitals, clinics, private practices, and other Ebackground check before students are permitted to engage in clinical experiences. Therefore, the School of Nursing and Clinical Agencies require a criminal background check for all students. This is to be completed during the semester immediately prior to the beginning of clinical experiences. Students may be required to complete additional background investigations during their course of study, dependent upon specific agency policies. Such requirements are beyond the control of the School of Nursing. The expenses of all background investigations are the responsibility of the student. Criminal background checks will be performed by a third-party company selected by the School of Nursing. Students will be given instructions regarding processes by the appropriate Academic Program Director.  As a part of the process, students will authorize the background screening company to release results to the School of Nursing through the office of the appropriate Academic Program Director. Failure to meet deadlines established by the School of Nursing may negatively affect clinical placements. Failure to complete the background check will preclude entry into clinical courses and can result in dismissal from the program. The office of the Academic Program Director will administratively remove noncompliant students from all clinical courses. Should the criminal background check reveal convictions, further investigation will be undertaken by the School of Nursing through the office of the appropriate Associate Dean. VIOLATIONS INVOLVING NARCOTICS OR CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES, CRIMES OF VIOLENCE (HOMICIDE, AGGRAVATED ASSAULT, CHILD OR ELDER ABUSE, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE), OR LISTING ON THE NATIONAL TERRORIST WATCH LIST, OR THE SEX AND VIOLENT OFFENDER REGISTRY MAY PRECLUDE ADMISSION TO CLINICAL COURSES, WHICH WOULD NEGATE COMPLETION OF THE NURSING DEGREE. Violations of any nature may preclude the School of Nursing from placing students in clinical agencies, dependent upon the policies in place at such agencies. The School of Nursing will make every effort to place a student affected by such agency policies. HOWEVER, STUDENTS WHOSE CRIMINAL BACKGROUND FINDINGS ARE NOT ACCEPTABLE TO THE CLINICAL AGENCIES WITH WHICH THE SCHOOL OF NURSING HAS EXISTING CLINICAL AGREEMENTS MAY EXPERIENCE DISRUPTIONS TO THEIR PLAN OF STUDY OR, IN EXTREME CASES, MAY BE UNABLE TO COMPLETE THE COURSE OF STUDY IN NURSING. 

Any student with a criminal background finding other than a misdemeanor will be referred to the Dean of the School of Nursing for investigation.  The student will be notified by the Academic Program Director to contact the Dean directly.  The student in question will not be permitted to attend clinical experiences, while the matter is under investigation the Dean will confer with the Associate Vice President for Administration as needed, and will notify faculty and student of final decision.  If a student is not able to complete clinical experiences, the student will be administratively dismissed from the program.  Students with question.

DRUG AND ALCOHOL SCREENING

Purpose

The School of Nursing recognizes that substance abuse can impair the professional judgment required of the student nurse and that drug testing is a reliable, objective, evidence-based tool to identify those who are currently engaging in the unauthorized or improper use of controlled substances. Substance abuse jeopardizes the ability of the student nurse to administer safe, competent patient care. Safety in the delivery of patient care is the basis for drug testing and such testing is essential to the health, safety and welfare of patients within the supervision or care of the student nurse. The purpose of this policy is to set forth the requirement of the School of Nursing that all students undergo a 10 panel drug screen and test negative before being permitted to engage in any clinical activity through the School of Nursing.

The School of Nursing at Widener University shall (a) support faculty in meeting their obligation to comply with section § 21.18. Standards of nursing conduct of the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing which states that “A registered nurse shall: …. Act to safeguard the patient from the incompetent, abusive or illegal practice of any individual.”

(http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/049/chapter21/chap21toc.html#21.18a, retrieved October 2, 2007) and (b) assure compliance with conditions for criminal background investigations and drug screens as specified in agency contracts with the Clinical Affiliates where students gain clinical experiences. Students who are under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol are deemed to be impaired and, therefore, incompetent to provide care to patients.

Policy

1. Students in the School of Nursing are required to complete a 10-panel drug screen with a negative test result as part of the requirements for approval to participate in a clinical placement. The drug testing shall be conducted annually or more frequently if required by the healthcare facility at which the student is placed (“clinical site”). Testing is required to be completed by the established deadlines. Failure to complete the requisite drug testing by any established deadline may result in the delay or withdrawal of a clinical placement. Testing under this policy is in addition to any testing required by the policies and procedures of any clinical site.

2. Students are required to sign all necessary consent and release forms related to any drug testing. By participating in the drug testing procedure, the student is authorizing release of the drug testing results in accordance with this policy.

3. Drug tests shall be performed through a testing facility designated by the School of Nursing. The designated testing facility shall determine what constitutes a positive or negative test result. A student is not permitted to select a testing facility to conduct any drug testing.

4. All test results are returned to the student’s online medical document manager hosted by the online vendor and are viewable by the student. The Vendor’s Medical Review Officer notifies the student by e-mail when the test results are available.

5. A positive test result will be reviewed by the Medical Review Officer (“MRO”) utilized by the vendor prior to release to a student. An MRO is a nationally certified, licensed medical doctor or osteopath responsible for receiving laboratory results under this policy who has knowledge of substance abuse disorders and appropriate medical training to interpret and evaluate positive test results, medical history and any other relevant biomedical information. MRO reviews are usually completed within seven (7) business days of an initial positive test result.

6. If a test result is positive, the MRO will notify the student by email. If the student does not respond to the MRO within three (3) business days of the transmission of the first email, the MRO shall report the test as positive and notify the student by email that the student’s test results have been posted. The vendor will also advise the Associate Dean that the student’s test results have been posted on the student’s on-line medical document manager.

7. When the student responds to the MRO, the MRO will interview the student and may undertake a further review in accordance with the testing facility’s internal procedures. If, following an interview and any further review, the MRO concludes that the test result is positive, the Vendor reports the test as positive, notifies the student by email that his/her test results have been posted and advise the Associate Dean that the student’s test results have been posted on the student’s on-line medical document manager.

8. Any attempt to delay, hinder or tamper with any testing or to alter the result of testing shall be considered a refusal to comply with this policy. As required by law, a student who is licensed as a nurse and who tests positive or is suspected of substance abuse will be reported to the appropriate state Board of Nursing issuing the license.

9. If a student is on a prescribed medication, and the MRO verifies that with the student by confirmation or review of a valid medical prescription, then the test is recorded on the website as a negative test. [We think that this is the intent of this section—please confirm.]

RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA USE

As a Widener University nursing student, a commitment to the highest professional standard and the solemn contract we hold with society to be safe, competent caregivers is expected. Our legal contracts with clinical agencies require clean substance screens. State laws that legalize recreational marijuana do not change our standard and our commitment to a drug-free life style, both during the school year and during breaks. Use of recreational marijuana, even though legal in other states, will not be permitted in the SON. Violations of the SON substance abuse guidelines will result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.

This policy is effective as of June 2022, and may be amended, revised or revoked by the School of Nursing in its sole discretion at any time.​

IMPAIRED BEHAVIOR IN CLINICAL COURSES

Clinical nursing experiences require a keen intellect and mental acuity. Students must present themselves to their clinical sites free from the influences of alcohol and chemical substances that would impair their judgment. Faculty in the clinical must be prepared to recognize and manage impairment that may result from use of drugs and/or alcohol.

Some common, but not all-inclusive, signs of impairment are:

  • Noticeable mood changes;
  • Repeated lateness for clinical experiences;
  • Isolation, withdrawal, or avoidance of students or faculty;
  • Increased frequency of trips to the bathroom;
  • Unexplained absences from the clinical unit;
  • Physical signs such as shakiness, tremors, dilated or constricted pupils, slurred speech, unsteady gait, or disheveled appearance (adapted from the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing Newsletter, Summer 2007).

Faculty who observe clustering of such signs, repeated patterning of signs, or who detect odors consistent with alcohol consumption/marijuana use must take action to preserve the well-being of patients and the student. Faculty are encouraged to seek a second opinion as appropriate to the situation, including other faculty members or preceptors at the same institution, or phone consultation with the Course Coordinator or appropriate Academic Program Director.

Procedure:

  1. The student will be removed from the clinical placement at the discretion of the faculty member who is responsible for the clinical experience. The faculty member may confer with other personnel involved with the student as indicated by the circumstances. A report must be completed and placed in the student file (see Report of Behavior Congruent with Impairment Form ).
  2. The faculty member will contact the Course Coordinator immediately to report the situation. The Course Coordinator will contact the appropriate Academic Program Director immediately. Should the Academic Program Director be unavailable, the Dean of the School of Nursing shall be notified.
  3. The student shall be assessed by the faculty member to determine the setting most appropriate for the collection of a drug screen and/or alcohol screen. These settings include:
    1. the third party lab selected by the School of Nursing, via transport by Widener Campus Safety if the student exhibits no signs requiring emergency treatment,

    2. the immediate clinical setting if it is an acute care setting and the student exhibits signs that require immediate emergency management,

    3. the Crozer Emergency Department via ambulance if the student exhibits signs that require immediate emergency management and the clinical setting is other than an acute care facility, or

    4. the Crozer Emergency Department via Widener Campus Safety if the student requires treatment, but exhibits no signs requiring immediate emergency management.

  4. The faculty member or designee will contact 911 or Widener Campus Safety as needed to provide transportation.

  5. Chain of Custody forms to accompany samples may be obtained from the secretary’s office of the Academic Program Director. The form will be given to the emergency department in the immediate clinical facility, or will be given to the responding Widener Campus Safety Officer.

  6. At the conclusion of treatment, Widener Campus Safety will transport students from Crozer Emergency Department or the immediate clinical setting to the main campus in Chester. Further transportation is the responsibility of the student.

  7. A student who is removed from the clinical setting for reasons set forth in this section will be provisionally suspended from further clinical experiences in all clinical courses.

  8. In order to lift suspension, the student must provide a statement signed by the health care provider indicating that the student is able to perform in the role of the student nurse, and must authorize release of the drug and alcohol screen results to the appropriate Academic Program Director. A positive drug or alcohol screen is not acceptable.

  9. A student with a positive drug or alcohol screen not supported by a legitimate prescription will remain suspended from the clinical setting for the duration of the semester, which will preclude course completion and result in failure of the clinical course(s).

  10. Students may be dismissed from the School of Nursing for such an offense.

  11. Any student who is dismissed from the School of Nursing for reason of positive drug or alcohol screen may re-apply. The student must provide documentation from an appropriate healthcare provider that he or she has undergone appropriate treatment/rehabilitation.

  12. A student, who is readmitted, must comply with unannounced drug and/or alcohol screens to be conducted at an independent laboratory identified by the School of Nursing within a 6-hour period after notification. All drug or alcohol screens must return with negative results. Any positive result or failure to comply with testing will result in dismissal from the School of Nursing.

  13. The student is required to continue counseling or other interventions as specified by his/her health care provider and/or the School of Nursing. Compliance with interventions will be documented by the health care provider in a letter to the appropriate Academic Program Director on a periodic basis to be determined by the Academic Program Director and stipulated in a contract developed and signed at the time of readmission. Failure to comply will result in final expulsion, after which the student will be ineligible to return to the School of Nursing.

  14. This policy sets forth consequences and requirements in the School of Nursing; any student who has a positive drug or alcohol screen while in the clinical setting will be referred to Widener University’s Dean of Students, and all university policies will apply.

  15. Students are responsible for all expenses for drug and alcohol screens and for related treatment.

  16.  Any student who refuses to submit to drug or alcohol screening as stipulated in this policy shall be ineligible to return to clinical, which will preclude course completion and result in failure of the course.

COVID-19 POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Responsibility and Professionalism.

You are healthcare students in a professional nursing program.  You are equipped with the knowledge and tools to conduct yourselves in a safe and protective manner within the lab/healthcare environment.  We call upon each of you to conduct yourselves in a safe and protective manner while outside of the lab experiences as well.  For these on campus labs, minimizing risk of outside exposure is paramount for yourself and your classmates. Practice social distancing, handwashing, and face coverings while out in public.  Please communicate freely with your Program Director of any concerns or questions you may have along the way.  Our goal as your faculty is to further your education toward your goal of becoming a nurse in a timely, safe, healthy and competent manner.

You are required to show proof of COVID vaccination and booster to attend class and clinical. 

INCIDENT REPORT FOR STUDENTS

A School of Nursing Student Incident Report (see Student Incident Report Form ) is filed when any unusual event occurs (such as needle sticks, falls, being struck by a patient, etc.) which may cause harm to students.

The Academic Program Director should be notified as soon as the faculty member has knowledge of such an event. The completed form should then be sent to the office of the Academic Program Director for processing. 

Incidents involving exposure to infectious disease, hazardous material, or serious injury must be reported to the Academic Program Director and University Health Services immediately.  Clinical instructors must contact the course coordinator or Manager of Clinical Placement who will contact the Academic Program Director.  A call to University Health Center will be made.  The incident report will be transmitted on the scene or next business day depending on time of occurrence.

BLOOD AND BODY FLUID EXPOSURES/NEEDLE STICK INJURIES

“An exposure that might place a health care professional at risk for HIV is defined as a percutaneous injury (e.g. a needle stick or cut with a sharp object) or contact of mucous membrane or non-intact skin (e.g. exposed skin that is chapped, abraded, or afflicted with dermatitis) with blood, tissue, or other body fluids that are potentially infectious” (CDC, 2005, pg 2). Students who sustain a needle stick injury, or get blood or other potentially infectious materials in their eyes, nose, mouth, or on broken skin should “immediately flood the exposed area with water and clean any wound with soap and water or a skin disinfectant if available” (https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/bloodbornepathogens/worker_protections.html

ACCESSIBILITY SERVICES

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, any student has the right to request reasonable accommodation of a disability.  Accommodations can be requested through the Office of Student Accessibility Services (520 E. 14th St., 610-499-1266).  Disabilities Services is the office that authorizes all accommodations on campus.  Please note that you will need to present documentation of your disability to Disabilities Services.  It is important to make this request as soon as possible so that we will have time to make any necessary arrangements. For additional information, please go to my.widener or click here

LATEX ALLERGY

Students with a known latex allergy must inform the Office of the Academic Program Director and note this information on their student health forms. Students are also responsible to inform each faculty member/instructor of their allergy and of the recommended accommodations at the onset of each new clinical or laboratory rotation. Where appropriate, non-latex gloves will be utilized. Students are responsible for knowing which article/equipment in the work environment may contain latex and cause an adverse reaction.

MEDICAL CONDITIONS REQUIRING MEDICATION

Students whose healthcare provider has prescribed a medication or controlled substance that could impair clinical functioning must inform the course coordinator and appropriate Academic Program Director in writing at the beginning of each clinical course. In addition, the student must provide a written statement from the healthcare provider indicating that the student is physically and mentally fit to provide care in the clinical setting. The School of Nursing requires such notification for the protection of students and their patients.  This documentation is to be sent to University Health Services.

CENTER FOR SI

The Center for Simulation, located on the 2nd floor of the Founders Hall is for the use of all nursing students attending Widener University. Its purpose is to provide students with instructional resources for selected courses and supplement nursing courses.

Flexible Center for Simulation hours are scheduled each semester to enable students to meet course expectations and requirements.

For further information, call the Director at 610-499-4690

PROFESSIONAL ATTIRE

The appearance of a student in the School of Nursing communicates definite messages about the profession and the School. As a student, professional attire may be required for School of Nursing activities.

Students are urged to consult the career services website (https://www.widener.edu/student-experience/student-success-support/career-design-development) for more detailed information. Information about appropriate attire for clinical experiences is found in the School of Nursing Handbook under “Uniform Regulations”.

AGENCY REQUIREMENTS

  1. Widener SON faculty and students are the guests of our clinical agencies.  As such, the utmost care is required to adhere to professional dress, conduct and agency policies
  2. Students are expected to comply with clinical agency policies related to identification badges,  confidentiality, HIPAA privacy regulations, criminal record check, drug free work environment, health records, immunizations, parking, meals, and mandatory procedural reviews, etc. Failure to comply with clinical agency policies may result in denial of clinical experience. Clinical agencies may require the students’ signature, verifying their understanding of specific policies.
  3. Clinical agencies have the right to remove students from duty when in the judgment of the agency they cannot carry out their duties due to physical or mental impairment. If such impairment is suspected to be due to drug and/or alcohol use, the agency may require drug testing and/or alcohol and/or counseling. If the student refuses, the agency may request the student be removed.
  4. The School may be required to provide agencies with the names and specific records of students. Clinical agencies have the right to bar SON students and/or faculty from the agency.  Such an occurrence is to be reported immediately to the Academic Program Director and Dean, who will then investigate the issues leading to such action.
  5. The School may be required to provide agencies with the names and specific records of students. Clinical agencies have the right to bar SON students and/or faculty from the agency.  Such an occurrence is to be reported immediately to the Academic Program Director and Dean, who will then investigate the issues leading to such action.

HEALTH CONDITIONS REQUIRING UNIVERSITY HEALTH CLEARANCE

The School of Nursing is responsible for protection of students and the patients for whom they care for by assuring that each student meets the School of Nursing Essential Functions (see The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice  ) in the Handbook. Students in clinical rotations, who have a significant health issue that precludes attendance or that may impair ability to function effectively in the clinical setting, must assure that their physicians provide a statement of medical clearance, including any functional limitations specific to the School of Nursing Essential Functions, to University Health Services or the Counselling Center as appropriate. Students must have their health care provider complete the Nursing Clinical Clearance forms (See Main Campus: Student Health Services Return to Nursing Clinical Clearance ; Harrisburg: Student Health Services Return to Clinical Clearance ) and submit them to Student Health Services of the Counselling Center. The Director of Student Health Services or the Counselling Center will communicate with the appropriate Academic Program Director and/or Dean (in the absence of the Academic Program Director) to provide a recommendation for clearance for return to the academic or clinical setting. The Academic Program Director/Dean (in the absence of the Academic Program Director) will communicate with faculty to let them know when students are cleared to return to the clinical setting. Any student who was evaluated in the Emergency room, hospitalized for any reason, sustained a head injury including concussion or any other condition that may impact the students’ ability to perform in clinical/class must initiate the clearance process through University Health Services or the Counselling Center. Faculty who may become aware of a student experiencing these conditions must notify the appropriate Academic Program Director.

Students who miss clinical as a result of documented absence will be afforded the opportunity to make-up clinical without incurring an additional expense. Students who miss more than one clinical day may be at risk for not meeting the course objectives and may necessitate withdrawal from the course.  Elective interventions must be scheduled outside the scheduled dates of the academic semester.  Students who miss clinical due to elective procedures will need to withdraw from the course and are subject to progression policies.

Students who are experiencing significant health issues are eligible for a leave of absence. The student must contact the appropriate School of Nursing Academic Program Director who will advise the student regarding the process for such a request through the office of the Graduate or Undergraduate Associate Provost.

CLINICAL/LAB/SIMULATION ABSENCES

Documented clinical/lab/simulation absences are the only excused absences in the School of Nursing.  A documented absence may include but is not limited to an illness, court date, funeral of an immediate family member, or a SON supported conference.  When an absence prevents students from fulfilling the clinical, lab, simulation or community assignment, they must contact their clinical/lab/simulation instructor, course coordinator and clinical agency directly as early as possible, prior to the beginning of clinical day.  If the absence is the result of an excused absence as defined above, the student is responsible for notifying the clinical/lab/simulation instructor and course coordinator as soon as the information is known.  Failure to contact the instructor, coordinator and agency is an unexcused absence and may result in failure of the clinical course. Documentation may include but is not limited to a note from a health care provider, funeral director or faculty member for a conference, a discharge summary from a hospital/emergency room or a copy of a court document.

The clinical/lab/simulation absence must be made up.  The make-up activity and the time/date is at the discretion of the course coordinator or simulation director.  Attendance at this make up experience is mandatory.  Students who do not attend will receive a failing grade for the course.

Students who miss clinical/lab/simulation time are at risk for not meeting their clinical objectives and may need to withdraw from the course (not the result of a clinical faculty member absence).  This matter will be discussed with the clinical instructor, course coordinator and Academic Program Director to determine whether the number of days missed will necessitate withdrawal from the course.  Students who miss clinical without documentation or students who do not notify the clinical instructor of an absence prior to the start of clinical may be at risk for failing clinical. Students who are experiencing a significant health issue may be eligible for Medical LOA and should follow the procedure outlined in the WU UG Catalog and contact the SON Academic Program Director. The student must contact the School of Nursing Academic Program Director to discuss the appropriate course of action.

CLINICAL ABSENCE DUE TO WEATHER

If the university is closed on a clinical day, the students do not report to their clinical sites but the time will be rescheduled at a later date.  If the university is open, it is the expectation that students will attend clinical as scheduled.

CLINICAL LATENESS

It is the student’s responsibility to be on time for clinical assignments or faculty may remove the student from the unit in the event of lateness for an unacceptable reason.  In the event the student is removed from the unit for lateness, that removal will be counted as a clinical absence.  In the event of unavoidable lateness students must call their instructors and notify them that they will be late.  Due to the nature of traffic in the Tri-State area, students should plan travel time to include potential delays of up to thirty minutes.

CLINICAL ROTATIONS

Although the majority of clinical experiences will be week days, students may have evening and/or weekend rotations. Clinical experiences take place in a variety of settings in the tri-state area.  Students can expect to travel up to one hour to their clinical placement site.  Students must assume responsibility for their own transportation.

CLINICAL/THEORY COURSES

Both the theory and clinical/laboratory portions of a nursing course must be successfully completed to obtain a passing grade. Letter grades are given for the theory portion and either a “Pass” or “Fail” grade for the clinical/laboratory portion. A failing clinical grade will result in a final course grade of ‘F’, regardless of the theory grade. 

CONFIDENTIALITY

Confidentiality is both an ethical and legal responsibility of all professional nurses. Annual review of the HIPAA Privacy Regulations is required. Students are to maintain the confidentiality of all clients. Information concerning any client’s identity, diagnosis, treatment, family problem or life style is considered confidential and shall not be discussed or otherwise passed on to any individuals outside of the agency.

CPR REQUIREMENT

A current 2-year certification for Healthcare Provider (BLS) is required. The course should include 1 man CPR, 2 man CPR, child and infant CPR, management of obstructed airway for both conscious and unconscious victims, and automatic external defibrillation. Students must have a valid CPR card during the entire nursing program.

Proof of certification is submitted with other clinical requirements as designated by the Academic Program Director.

DENIAL OF CLINICAL EXPERIENCE

A School of Nursing faculty member has full and unmitigated authority to deny, based upon the faculty member’s judgment, a student’s participation in any School-approved clinical nursing experience activity. Students will have the right to a full hearing before the School’s Academic Council. The hearing will be held in an expeditious manner.

EMERGENCY CARE

Should a health problem arise during a clinical experience, students will be referred to the nearest appropriate acute care facility. Students are responsible for all medical costs incurred; the University will not assume this responsibility.  Prior to returning to the clinical, the student must be cleared through University Health Services.

ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS

Students must meet the “The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice  ”.

HEALTH INSURANCE

All medical costs are the responsibility of the student. Therefore, students are required to have health insurance. Verification of this insurance is required annually.

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

  1. Health requirements are required to meet the contractual stipulations of the clinical agencies in which clinical experiences take place.
  2. Students will be instructed to access the Castlebranch website to fulfill these requirements.

Note: Students will be unable to attend clinical if health requirements are not completed and they are not “cleared” by Castlebranch.  Students will be responsible to submit all required documentation prior to the specified deadline.

HIPAA GUIDELINES

Students must annually review and sign the Widener University School of Nursing HIPAA form. (See Essential Functions for Nursing Form ).

LEARNING PRESCRIPTIONS

Students who are determined to have skill deficiencies can be referred to the CSCT for remediation. Clinical faculty is encouraged to complete a “Learning Prescription” form (see Learning Prescription Form ).  If a student receives a learning prescription, he or she must schedule an appointment at 610-499-4215.  Failure to complete the learning prescription may result in a clinical/lab failure.

MALPRACTICE INSURANCE

Malpractice insurance is required of all clinical nursing students. A group malpractice insurance policy is available through the University for all generic students. Students are billed annually for malpractice coverage.

PERSONAL SAFETY​

Personal safety is a matter of concern to everyone. Most clinical agencies have policies regarding personal safety. Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with these guidelines and using good judgment. Students may have independent clinical community assignments where the student will not be accompanied by an instructor.

In general, use the following guidelines:

  • Concerns related to safety shall be discussed with the instructor.
  • Faculty instruction related to safety shall be followed.
  • Agency guidelines shall be followed.
  • Visits should be scheduled between the hours of 9 AM and 4 PM whenever possible and students should make visits to client homes in pairs.
  • Clients shall be contacted in advance of a visit when possible.
  • Students shall wear the School’s student uniform, unless otherwise directed.
  • If not familiar with the area, students shall verify the directions with the clinical instructor or agency staff member.
  • Students shall inform the clinical instructor, and/or agency staff member of their destination and expected return time.

UNIFORM REGULATIONS

The School of Nursing has specific uniform requirements for all clinical rotations.

  1. Acute Care, Community Settings, and Clinical and Laboratory classes
    1. A clean, pressed navy blue scrub set of shirt and pants is to be worn by all students. The uniform will include the School of Nursing patch on the left sleeve of the shirt and the student’s name tag.
    2. The navy blue scrub shirt will have Widener University School of Nursing embroidered in gold (using ½ - inch script style) in the upper left front section of the shirt. The scrub set shirt with two patch pockets is to be worn on the outside. The scrub pant length should not hang over the shoes. Long sleeved shirts or T-shirts cannot be visible beneath the scrub shirt.
    3. A navy blue short lab jacket with the School of Nursing patch on the left sleeve may be worn over the scrub set.
    4. All white supportive leather shoes or leather sneakers and white socks are to be worn. No open back or open toe shoes are permitted.
    5. School of Nursing patches and name pins may be purchased from the Widener University Bookstore. A plastic holder for the student’s picture ID can be purchased from the Campus bookstore.
    6. WUSNA, Red Cross Service Pins, and First Time Pass Pins may be worn on the student uniform above the student name tag as appropriate to the clinical setting.
  2. Other Clinical Settings
    1. Professional street clothes or other types of uniform may be permitted. Clinical faculty will discuss specific guidelines for these situations.
    2. Professional dress includes minimal jewelry, closed-toe shoes, and modest choices for necklines and hemlines.  No jeans are permitted.
  3. Widener University student name pins and University ID’s must be visible at all times.
  4. Hair must be styled off the face and collar.  Hair must be a natural color.
  5. Beards and mustaches must be neatly groomed.
  6. Make-up is permitted in moderation.
  7. Fingernails must not extend beyond the end of the finger. Nail polish is not permitted.
  8. Artificial nails, dip or gel nail polish or nail extenders are not permitted. See CDC information at www.cdc.gov.
  9. Tattoos must not be visible.
  10. Perfume is prohibited in the clinical/lab areas.
  11. Wedding bands, watches, and one small post earring per ear are the only articles of jewelry permitted. Gauges must be filled with skin tone plugs during clinical. No additional body adornments are permitted.
  12. Students are expected to have a watch (with a second hand), a hemostat, bandage scissors, a professional stethoscope, and a penlight with them on the clinical unit at all times. Many of these items can be purchased at the Widener bookstore: https://www.bkstr.com/widenerestore/home.
  13. Students may wear a head covering as required by their religious beliefs.

 

UNIVERSITY ID

Students must wear University student photo ID in lieu of their name pins.

PRE-CLINICAL REQUIREMENTS FOR STUDENTS SCHEDULED FOR GRADUATE AND UNDERGRADUATE CLINICAL COURSES

The following pre-clinical requirements apply to BSN, MSN, and DNP students. These requirements must be met for you to participate in required clinical experiences.

The requirements to be met are as follows:

  1. Requirements met through Castlebranch
    • Criminal background check

    • Substance abuse screen – 10 panel urine drug screen

    • See enclosed policy “Requirements for Criminal Background Investigations and Drug and Alcohol Screening for Students in Clinical Courses” 

  2. Requirements to be submitted to Castlebranch: (DEADLINE: April 1st for traditional, August 1st for Accelerated)​​​

    • CPR Certification inclusive of infant, child, adult, 2 person, and AED. CPR for the Health Care Professional

    • Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance (within 12 months of beginning clinical)

    • Background Check through Castlebranch only

    • Documentation of Health Insurance Coverage (copies of current coverage)

    • Pre-Clinical Health History

    • Pre-Clinical Physical exam to determine

    • Ability to perform essential functions, consent to video, confidentiality agreement, fingerstick, EE

    • A titer package is available through Widener University Student Health

    • Health insurance portability- HIPAA Acknowledgement

    • Documentation of immunization of serologic immunity, TDaP, and tuberculosis screening

    • Annual Flu vaccination each Fall

    • COVID-19 vaccine

  3. Student Responsibilities

  4. Additional Requirements for RN/BSN and Master’s Students

    • ​​Proof of licensure as a Registered Nurse in PA for RN/BSN students and CNS students; FNP students required to be licensed in PA plus either NJ or DE license to facilitate clinical placements.

    • Malpractice insurance within acceptable limits for specialty.

Please be sure to submit your documentation in advance of the designated deadline

THE ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS FOR NURSING PRACTICE

See The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice  

STUDENT HEALTH SERVICES RETURN TO NURSING CLINICAL CLEARANCE: MAIN CAMPUS

Widener University School of Nursing requires students who have missed any clinical time due to illness, injury, surgery, child birth, or emergency department visit, to be evaluated at Student Health Services in order to return. To return to clinical you must be able to perform all The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice as outlined in the School of Nursing Handbook with no restrictions.

1) If during clinical you become ill, or injure yourself and are taken to the Emergency Department please call Student Health Services and schedule a Return to Clinical appointment. You must provide all your emergency department records and discharge paperwork to the provider at the time of your visit to be appropriately evaluated.

2) If you are injured, treated for an illness, experience child birth, go to the emergency department outside of clinical, have surgery or are involved in an automobile accident please have the Main Campus: Student Health Services Return to Nursing Clinical Clearance  form filled out by your treating provider. Once cleared by your outside provider please call Student Health Services and schedule a Return to Clinical appointment. You must bring the attached form filled out and signed as well as all your supporting documentation, such as diagnosis, treatment and clinical notes/tests to your visit to be appropriately evaluated. Please note if involved in an automobile accident Student Health Services will not be doing any physical assessment. Student Health Services will only be reviewing provided form and all required supporting documentation. 

STUDENT HEALTH SERVICES RETURN TO NURSING CLINICAL CLEARANCE: HARRISBURG CAMPUS

Widener University School of Nursing requires students who have missed any clinical time due to illness, injury, surgery, childbirth, or emergency department visit, to have their records reviewed by Student Health Services prior to return to clinical. To return to clinical you must be able to perform all The Essential Functions for Nursing Practice as outlined in the School of Nursing Handbook with no restrictions.

1) If during clinical you become ill, or injure yourself and are taken to the Emergency Department you must provide all your emergency department records and discharge paperwork to Student Health Services in order to be reviewed. This needs to be reviewed by Student Health prior to your return to clinical. Please fax all appropriate information to 610-499-1181.

2) If you are injured, treated for an illness, experience child birth, go to the emergency department outside of clinical, have surgery or are involved in an automobile accident please have the Harrisburg: Student Health Services Return to Clinical Clearance  form filled out by your treating provider. Once cleared by your outside provider please fax all appropriate information to Student Health Services. You must fax the attached form filled out and signed as well as all your supporting documentation, such as diagnosis, treatment and clinical notes/tests to your visit to be appropriately reviewed. Student Health Services will only be reviewing provided form and all required supporting documentation to determine if appropriate to return to clinical. Please fax all information to 610-499-1181.