Registered Nurse - Critical Care Nursing

Ontario College Graduate Certificate | Code: 0479

About the program

Through theory and supervised clinical practice using the nursing process, this program focuses on stabilizing and caring for the critically ill adult client. Because the program has a flexible curriculum design, it will meet the needs of both the experienced critical care nurse and the nurse who wants to move into this specialty area.

Note: All courses require College of Nurses registration. RPN's are eligible to take individual courses but they are not eligible to register or complete the program certificate at this time.

Program information

All courses must be completed within 5 years of acceptance into the program.

Admission requirements

  • Current College of Nurses Certificate of Registration as an RN

Note re: admission requirements

  • Applicants possessing degrees/diplomas from institutions where the language of instruction was not English will be required to provide test scores as evidence of their English language proficiency. Test scores, if required, would be a minimum of TOEFL iBT 88; IELTS 6.5 with no bands less than 6.0; CAEL 70 with no sub-test band scores less than 60; PTE Academic 58; Conestoga English Language Test (CELT) Band 6; or equivalent scores in other recognized standard tests of English.
  • We offer a language program for students whose English language skills are below the standard required for admission but all other admission criteria have been met. An applicant will be eligible for admission to the graduate certificate program after completion of level 4 of the General Arts and Science - English Language Studies (ELS) program with an overall grade average of 80% and no grade less than 75%. Placement in the ELS program is determined by scores on an in-house English language test or TOEFL or IELTS.

Admission procedures

  • Submit a completed Conestoga College Program Application Form.
  • Attach proof of Admission Requirements.
  • Final selection is made following an assessment of the admission requirements.

Program requirements

  • Mandatory practicum health and safety requirements must be completed by students prior to student field/clinical placements. Clinical placements are only available to students registered in the program and must be arranged by the Placement Office. Successful placement completion is required for students to progress to program completion. To qualify for field/clinical placement learning experiences, students must present the following:

    • A complete immunization record including MMR, Tdap, varicella, polio and hepatitis B. Seasonal flu vaccination is required during flu season (October - March).
    • TB Testing: Evidence of current 2-step or previous 2-step + current 1-step if more than one year has passed since 2-step testing.
    • Standard First Aid and CPR - BLS (Basic Life Support)
    • An annual Police Check for Vulnerable Sector Screening (VSS). Police Checks must be clear of any unpardoned criminal offences. An unclear criminal record may result in the inability to participate in field placement/clinical which will jeopardize progress in the program. Acceptance for placement is at the discretion of the agency; some agencies may request students to provide a VSS completed within six months of placement start date. Students with criminal records are advised to meet with the program chair for academic counselling to determine program suitability.

  • Applicants are advised that a latex-free environment in the College or clinical setting is NOT guaranteed.

  • Travel within the program: Students are responsible for arranging their own travel to and from assigned learning settings external to the College and for covering any costs incurred. The location of these learning sites could be anywhere within a one hour's drive of the Doon campus.

  • Applicants should display integrity, reliability, maturity, self-direction, self-discipline, determination, excellent communication and interpersonal skills, poise and leadership attributes.

Graduate opportunities

For more details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities, see the Government of Canada website: https://www.jobbank.gc.ca/home

Program outcomes

  • Practice within the scope of professional, legal and ethical standards, organization policies and best practices in critical care nursing.
  • Establish and maintain therapeutic relationships with patients, families and/or substitute decision makers to optimize patient and family-centred critical care.
  • Assess, analyze and monitor data for patients with complex, multi-system problems in order to anticipate early deterioration in patient's condition, establish priorities and to plan interventions.
  • Plan, implement, evaluate and document specialized nursing interventions to achieve optimal patient outcomes in potential or actual life threatening illness and end-of-life situations.
  • Advocate for and deliver patient and family-centred care to patients/families experiencing potential or actual life threatening illness and end-of-life situations.
  • Collaborate with members of the inter-professional health care team in providing care for patients experiencing potential or actual life threatening illness and end-of-life situations to achieve continuity of care and optimal patient outcomes.
  • Use evidence-based research and best practice guidelines to inform and adapt critical care nursing practice.
  • Use strategies and available resources to respond to environmental, physical and psychosocial stressors affecting self and others in the critical care setting.
  • Engage in reflective practice and ongoing professional development to enhance competence in critical care nursing.

Program related resources

Program contact

Continuing Education
Upcoming Registrations

Mark your calendars for our upcoming registration dates so you can plan your future.

Winter Registration: November 4, 2019
Spring Registration: February 3, 2020