Education Options for Registered Nurses
The Canadian Nurses Association believes that the knowledge, skills and personal attributes that today’s health system demands of its RNs can be gained only through broad-based bachelor’s nursing programs.
With the exception of Quebec, all Canadian provinces/territories require a bachelor’s in nursing (BN or BScN) to enter the profession. In most cases, more career opportunities will be open to nurses with degrees.
How long is the program?
Bachelor’s programs can be completed in two to four years. Accelerated, condensed and advanced entry programs are in place in all jurisdictions.A growing proportion of nursing students have already completed a degree in another discipline; many of these students can access two-year bachelor nursing programs. Degree programs are offered in universities and in some university college institutes.
What will I learn?
Nursing students will study psychology, child development, sociology, anatomy and physiology. The nursing courses include theory and clinical practice. In addition to learning social and physical sciences, university programs generally offer additional studies in leadership, health teaching, research and other disciplines. You will be supervised and supported in the clinical setting to ensure the safety of clients, as well as your own safety.
What are the entrance requirements?
Entrance requirements differ from one school to another. Generally, the admission requirements are high school graduation with senior level English or French, mathematics, chemistry, physics and biology. You can contact your provincial/territorial nurse’s association or individual schools for their specific requirements and information on funding.
Is there funding?
Contact your relevant school of nursing for possible contacts regarding funding, student loans, or scholarships. For more information, consult the Canadian Nurses Foundation.
Are there graduate studies in nursing?
Canada has 32 master’s programs available all across Canada and a total of 15 doctoral programs are available in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia. Some schools are offering graduate courses by distance. To learn more, consult Nursing education programs in Canada.