These individuals are selected by their peers to represent the students enrolled in particular courses. They participate in appropriate course meetings and can place items on the course meeting agenda for discussion. They serve as a liaison between the students and course faculty, bringing information and concerns from the students to the faculty in a professional manner and channeling information from the faculty to the students. They are expected to be knowledgeable about course matters and to establish and maintain a viable communication system with the students so that they can speak on their behalf.
This faculty member is responsible for the overall organization and administration of a particular course. He/she orients students to the courses, establishes a system of faculty/student communication, makes all arrangements for the theoretical and clinical components of the course so that they are consistent with course objectives, informs students of changes in University and/or School of Nursing policies and in course requirements and schedules, compiles and reports grades in collaboration with course faculty, develops a plan for course evaluation and meets with student course representatives to discuss ideas and concerns regarding the course whenever appropriate.
If these customary channels do not satisfy the need or concern under consideration, students may consult directly with the associate dean for academic affairs or dean.
All upper division traditional and ABS nursing majors must have access to a portable computer that they can bring to class. Faculty will be utilizing online resources for academic learning activities and examinations. Laptops must meet the University’s technology/software requirements for undergraduate students.
Students are required to complete a background check, at their own expense, prior to the start of the program. Details including deadline will be provided upon admission.
In the field of nursing, communication is an important skill as it allows nurses to understand patient needs and helps to ensure the delivery of safe care. Prior to starting the program, admitted non-native English speakers will be required to take the SPEAK (Speaking Proficiency English Assessment Kit) test unless they have attended an English-speaking high school for four or more years; however, it is highly recommended that all non-native English speakers take the SPEAK test. Students who do not meet a minimum score of 50 will be required to participate in a simulated patient encounter in an effort to further evaluate English comprehension and usage. In addition, students will be linked with a Student Services staff member to discuss plans for utilizing support services and participating in activities that may help with the improvement of communication skills. The SPEAK Test is administered by the UB English Language Institute.
Participation in clinical laboratory experiences by nursing students necessitates that particular attention be given to protection of the health of both students and the public with whom they come in contact. Certain preventive measures on the part of nursing students are, therefore, required.
Each student must assume responsibility for meeting health requirements established by the School and/or the various agencies that are utilized.
All students must have a physical examination including required health professional immunizations and a PPD test before starting the program. A health appraisal form must be completed yearly. PPD must be repeated annually. If the test is positive or not done, a chest x-ray is required. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has declared student nurses to be one of the groups most at risk for Hepatitis B. Therefore, all undergraduate students are required to have the Hepatitis B vaccine. Students must start this series of injections prior to the deadline set in their admissions letter and complete it on track in order to start and participate clinical experiences. In addition, the School of Nursing requires documentation of a chicken pox titer or a documented history of having had chicken pox. Other immunization requirements may be required to meet health requirements of various health agencies and New York State Department of Health, such as influenza vaccine. These requirements will be communicated to the students as necessary.
UB School of Nursing (SON) students are required to rotate through hospital-based clinics in order to complete the program. All SON students must comply with New York State Department of Health immunization requirements for hospital personnel in order to participate in hospital-based rotations.
A student may need to withdraw from nursing courses in order to allow time to receive treatment and improve his/her health condition and to maintain the safety of clients. Refer to leave of absence and withdrawal policies in the undergraduate policies section.
Patient confidentiality at the facilities used by the University at Buffalo, State University of New York School of Nursing is considered to be of primary importance. In addition to each facility policy, a federal law called the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires patient health information to be kept confidential. Patients and their families have a right to deal with their health information use in a private and secure manner, trusting that their privacy will be maintained. In order to protect this right to confidentiality and to comply with federal and state laws, students must agree to hold all information (including, but not limited to, patient names, their medical information and relevant agency information) gained through their clinical assignments at any facility used by the University at Buffalo, State University of New York School of Nursing in strictest confidence. Confidentiality includes, but is not limited to, not discussing patients or their medical conditions with persons who do not have a need to know and not removing any documents with individually identifiable patient data from the facility.
Students need to understand the terms of this Confidentiality Policy and agree to abide by the above requirements. Students also need to understand that any breach of a patient’s confidentiality may result in disciplinary action against them and possible removal from the clinical site to which they have been assigned.
The privacy rule of HIPAA requires that all agencies be able to demonstrate that they have trained their employees and others who do business with them so that they understand all the privacy procedures required by this rule. Clinical agencies require that we provide evidence that faculty and students have met this requirement. Students must complete the HIPPA tutorial provided by the School of Nursing. Clinical agencies require documentation of orientation to their facilities as well as completion of content related to HIPAA regulation.
Undergraduate students are expected to maintain a professional appearance in the Clinical Skills Lab, Health Assessment Lab and clinical settings. Students are also expected to comply with agency policy, which includes such items as:
The complete student uniform consists of the following:
Some clinical agencies may require students to wear an agency ID badge in addition to the Nursing ID. In the event a cost is associated with an agency ID badge the School of Nursing will pay a one-time fee for the badge. Students will be responsible for any replacement cost in the event an agency ID badge is lost.
The complete student uniform consists of the following:
Students will receive specific information, from the course coordinator, regarding day and time for clinical placements prior to the start of each rotation. Clinical placements may occur any day of the week (including weekends) and shifts will vary, but will not interfere with other required learning activities.
Clinical assignments are arranged in several community agencies and settings. These placements require individuals to have access to transportation (car or public). Students are responsible for their transportation to assigned clinical settings and any parking fees on site. Carpooling is recommended when possible.
Based on direct observation, records will be utilized by individual instructors to formulate an evaluation of the student's performance at the completion of each laboratory experience. Evaluation is as follows:
Submit the Petition for Course Credit Outside Your Primary Academic Career form (pdf).
A student must achieve a minimal final course grade of 75% (C+) for successful completion of all undergraduate courses in the nursing program. A student must achieve an 83% (B) for all graduate level courses taken in the nursing program.
A student is required to achieve a 75% average on all exams in a nursing course.
Individual assignments and test grades will be carried to the second decimal place throughout the semester.
Exam 1 = 74.27; Exam 2 = 83.49; Exam 3 = 79.16; Final = 80.26
Individual grades are then added and weighted for a final grade.
74.27 + 83.49 + 79.16 + 80.26 = 317.18/4 = 79.25
Only the final grade is rounded to the nearest whole number using standard mathematical rounding.
79.25 = 79
Standard mathematical rounding requires the first digit after the decimal to be at least 0.5 to round up.
74.6 would be recorded as 75 and 74.49 would be recorded as 74.
Students must maintain the required nursing grade point average of C+ or higher. They must also adhere to these policies relative to successful completion of required nursing courses:
*Upper-division nursing courses are those required for graduation, taken by a student following acceptance as an approved nursing major.
While some courses satisfy the requirements of multiple programs, students must enroll in the course sections specified for their official program. While the course description and learning outcomes are the same, in some cases the planned learning activities are specific to a population’s educational plan and experience. In particular, online RN to BS sections are geared toward the licensed professional nurse while the seated section is for pre-licensure nursing students (traditional and ABS programs). Pre-licensure ABS students may petition the Undergraduate Program Committee to take a section not designated for their official program but for another pre-licensure program if the course is not full. Traditional students will not be permitted to take summer ABS accelerated format course.
Progression is also dependent upon acceptable professional behavior. All rules of the Board of Trustees of SUNY, and all of the laws of the City of Buffalo, the Town of Amherst, the State of New York and the United States of America apply on campus and are considered part of the Student Code of Conduct. Additionally, students must immediately notify the assistant dean for undergraduate programs of all criminal arrests and convictions. While criminal proceedings will not automatically bar a student from participating in clinical situations, the academic field assistant dean must assess each individual set of circumstances to determine if the student will be allowed to participate in such clinical situations. In some circumstances, a student with a pending criminal matter may be required to refrain from participating in clinical situations until the criminal matter is resolved.
Professional behaviors such as accountability, responsibility and promptness are expectations of all nursing students. These behaviors are monitored by faculty in each course and consistent patterns of unprofessional behavior will be documented and addressed with students through an action plan for improvement. Failure to meet professional behavior expectations may affect progression and retention in the nursing program.
Evidence of any of the following behaviors, which will be documented and kept in the student's file, may result in verbal admonition, action plan for improvement, reduction in course grade, failure and/or dismissal from the program. Those behaviors with an asterisk (*) are especially serious and can result in immediate suspension from the course and/or dismissal from the program.
A form will be utilized to document faculty concerns related to unsatisfactory professional behavior and/or inadequate performance. The form is to be signed by the student and the faculty member and placed in the student's file.
The course coordinator and assistant dean for undergraduate programs will be notified of documented behaviors. The assistant dean for undergraduate programs in consultation with the course coordinator and faculty may dismiss a student from a course and/or the nursing program if behavior is especially serious and flagged with an asterisk (*) in the Professional Behavior section.
A student who does not fulfill one or more of these requirements at any time will be notified in writing by the appropriate administrative officer of the School of Nursing:
A student who is dismissed may petition (in writing) the Undergraduate Program Committee through the director of student services within 45 calendar days from the date of dismissal. Petition procedures are as follows:
*Academic days are defined as weekdays when classes are in session, not including the summer or winter sessions.
In making decisions regarding progression of students who are out of sequence in the nursing program, individuals will be allowed to continue on a space-available basis.Please see Program Specific Guidelines policy for details. Students in good academic standing within the School of Nursing who maintain continuous registration in required nursing courses will receive first priority. The remaining students may be given priority on the basis of their cumulative and upper-division nursing GPAs at the time the decision is made.
The competent and safe practice of medication calculation and administration is a critical component of professional nursing practice. The UB School of Nursing has the responsibility to prepare graduates to safely and competently calculate and administer medications and intravenous fluids in a variety of health care settings.
Each undergraduate student is required to pass a medication calculation/IV therapy examination comprised of 10 test items for each of the following clinical courses: NSG 373, 375, 474 and 481. A passing grade of 90% is required to pass the course. Students not successful after the initial attempt will be given a second opportunity to meet the 90% proficiency. Students who do not achieve 90% after a second attempt will not pass the course.
To further evaluate students’ proficiency with medication calculation, each corresponding theory course (NSG 371, 374, 470 and 478) will include medication, math and IV therapy test items (3 to 5), which are relevant to the course content, on each examination given in the course.
To facilitate student achievement, the following activities are provided:
Student assignments will be turned in to the faculty using the assignment drop boxes located outside 220 Wende Hall and outside 316 Wende Hall.
The drop boxes outside 220 Wende Hall will be designated for specific courses:
The drop boxes outside 316 Wende Hall will be designated for:
Students are required to follow these guidelines when placing material in the drop box:
Assignments not in an envelope and meeting the above guidelines will not be accepted. Assignments designated to be submitted through UBlearns will not be accepted if placed in the drop box.
Students requesting leave from the University should meet with the director of student services prior to the leave period to assure proper advisement. Please review the University’s leave of absence policy for important details.
Students returning after a leave of absence from clinical that exceeds six months will be required to complete a competency assessment to ensure students are prepared to provide safe, quality nursing care. The competency assessment will be scheduled by the course and laboratory coordinators with the student prior to the start of the semester. The competency assessment will include:
Based upon each student’s performance on the above assessments, an individual action plan for improvement will be developed, if necessary, to assist the student to successfully re-integrate into the undergraduate program; all students are expected to fully comply with any individual action plan.
Objective type examinations (true/false, multiple choice, etc.) are primarily evaluation tools. Because the items on these examinations are constantly being evaluated for reliability, difficulty level and discrimination ability, with appropriate refinements being made, it is essential that these examinations be retained by the faculty. Along with this right to retain all copies of the examination go certain responsibilities:
Students also have corresponding rights and responsibilities related to the review of objective examinations:
Essay type examinations, term papers, written care plans, etc., have significant potential for student learning and students can often utilize these long after the particular assignment has been completed. These examinations and assignments, which often contain the faculty member's written critique, should be returned to the students. This does not interfere with the students' right to discuss the examination or assignment with faculty nor relieve students of the responsibility for making appointments with faculty for these discussions.
Students taking NSG 447 may do so out of town only with approved clinical agencies if they have achieved an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher and are not currently or previously been on contract for academic or behavioral concerns. Exceptions may be made at the discretion of the course coordinator, based on student clinical performance evaluations and clinical faculty support.
For all out-of-town placements, the School of Nursing must enter into a formal contractual agreement with the cooperating agency and an adjunct faculty. This is a time-consuming process and because of legal constraints imposed either by SUNY, the State Education Department or by the out-of-town agency, a satisfactory and timely contract cannot always be negotiated. Informal agreements between students and staff of the agency are not sufficient and do not constitute a guarantee that a student placement can be made. Students intending to go out of town for this course should keep these factors in mind and consult with the course coordinator of NSG 447 in the semester prior to enrolling in the course.
Student may only be allowed to start NSG 447 if all other nursing coursework is complete with grades of C+ of higher. A student who fails a course in their final semester will be dropped from NSG 447 prior to the course start date. Students should note that should this action drop their spring registration below 12 credits, there may be financial aid ramifications. Students are responsible for any financial ramifications associated with dropped, resigned or failed coursework.
Independent study is meant to allow students an opportunity to engage in individualized learning outside required curriculum, under the guidance of an appropriate faculty member. In some cases, an independent study may address a special topic area that the student in interested in developing, or may be related to an internship opportunity in the community. In order to participate in such an experience, the student must have a prior agreement with a faculty member who is willing to sponsor and supervise his/her work.
Outstanding undergraduate students can enrich their education and gain personal recognition through participation in a supervised teaching experience with a nursing faculty member. In concert with the faculty member, student teachers will have an opportunity to develop their leadership, management, teaching, technology and presentation skills in a course previously completed. Typically, instructors recruit students when they are in need.
Eligible students are those who previously completed the course and earned a grade of A or A- or have prior experience in the subject and have a GPA of 3.0.
Required student teacher activities:
A letter grading system will be used. Grading will be based on an established contract/rubric for the specific course.
The faculty mentor has the right to terminate the mentorship based on student teacher’s attendance, participation, dependability, quality of work and academic standing.
Provides an opportunity for outstanding undergraduate students in nursing to enrich their education and gain personal recognition through participation in the scholarly work of a faculty mentor. In concert with the faculty member, a student conducts a research project that culminates in a senior thesis of publication quality.
An opportunity for outstanding undergraduate students in nursing to enrich their education and gain personal recognition through participation in the scholarly work of a faculty mentor. In concert with the faculty member, the student conducts a research project that culminates in a senior thesis of publication quality. (Fall semester: 3 credits and Spring semester: 3 credits)
Submit all required documents to firstname.lastname@example.org for approval by the associate dean for research and scholarship no later than four weeks prior to the start of the semester.
Honors will be noted on transcripts as highest distinction (GPA of 3.85-4.00), high distinction (GPA of 3.70-3.84) or distinction (GPA of 3.50-3.69).
Errors in health care have been identified as the third leading cause of death in the US (Makary & Daniel, 2016). To promote student awareness and engagement in creating and promoting of an ongoing culture of safety, the following guidelines will be used when a student is involved in a miss or near miss.
A near miss is an unplanned event that did not result in injury, illness, or damage – but had the potential to do so. Only a fortunate break in the chain of events prevented an injury, fatality or damage; in other words, a miss that was nonetheless very near.
For example, penicillin was ordered for a patient allergic to the drug; however, the pharmacist was alerted to the allergy during computer order entry, the prescriber was called, and the penicillin was not dispensed or administered to the patient. Or the wrong drug was dispensed by pharmacy, and a nurse caught the error before it was administered to the patient.
Steps to address:
A miss (error) is an unplanned event, situation or error that occurred (completed in that the patient was the object of the error). An injury, illness or damage may have occurred but had a high potential to occur.
For example, a patient is at high risk for falls and is placed on fall precautions (yellow blanket, yellow booties, bed alarm engaged and bed in low position). The patient got out of bed unassisted and fell resulting in a fractured hip. The bed alarm was not engaged.
Steps to address:
Makary, M., & Daniel, M. (2016). Medical error – the third leading cause of death in the US. British Medical Journal, 353, i2139. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i2139
The mission of the University at Buffalo School of Nursing is to foster an environment of academic and scholarly excellence that develops nurse leaders who will improve the health and wellness of local, national and global communities. The UB School of Nursing baccalaureate programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Our highly competitive programs are designed to prepare students for the expanding role of professional nurses and the challenging work environments of contemporary nurses. Therefore, the faculty has determined that certain technical standards are requisite for admission, progression and graduation from the nursing programs.
In addition to classroom learning, clinical learning occurs throughout the program and involves considerations (such as patient safety and clinical facilities) that are not present in classroom environments. For this reason, any applicant or student who seeks accommodations prior to or immediately after enrolling in the nursing programs, in order to meet the technical standards set forth below, must present a complete plan for completion of the standard(s) with accommodations to the Undergraduate Program Committee for approval. Applicants and students may consult with UB’s Office of Accessibility Resources for assistance in identifying reasonable accommodations and engaging in an interactive process with the School of Nursing to determine the plan for alternative completion. Reasonable accommodations may not fundamentally alter the academic program, pose a direct threat to health or safety, or significantly interfere with the essential functions of clinical performance. Please note that our Traditional and Accelerated programs are offered as full-time cohort programs only.
An individual must be able to independently, with or without reasonable accommodation, meet the following technical standards of general abilities and those specifically of (1) observation; (2) communication; (3) motor; (4) intellectual, conceptual and quantitative; (5) essential behavioral and social attributes; and (6) ability to manage stressful situations. Individuals unable to meet these technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodation, will not be able to complete the program and are counseled to consider alternative programs.
In order to achieve appropriate learning outcomes and connect complex concepts, our Traditional and Accelerated Programs are offered in a full-time format only.
The student is expected to possess functional use of the senses of vision, touch, hearing and smell so that data received by the senses may be integrated, analyzed and synthesized in a consistent and accurate manner. A student must also possess the ability to perceive pain, pressure, temperature, position, vibration and movement, which are important to the student's ability to gather significant information needed to effectively assess and evaluate patients. A student must be able to respond promptly to urgent situations that may occur during clinical training activities and must not hinder the ability of other members of the health care team to provide prompt treatment and care to patients.
The student must have sufficient capacity to make accurate visual observations and interpret them in the context of laboratory studies, medication administration and patient care activities. In addition, the student must be able to document these observations and maintain accurate records.
The student must communicate effectively both verbally and non-verbally to elicit information and to translate that information to others. Each student must have the ability to read, write, comprehend and speak the English language to facilitate communication with patients, their family members and other professionals in health care settings. In addition, the student must be able to read, interpret and document in electronic or other form of patient records accurately, present information in a professional, logical manner and provide patient counseling and instruction to effectively care for patients and their families. The student must possess verbal and written communication skills that permit effective communication with instructors and students in both the classroom and clinical settings.
The student must be able to perform gross and fine motor movements with sufficient coordination needed to perform complete physical examinations utilizing the techniques of inspection, palpation, percussion, auscultation and other diagnostic maneuvers. A student must develop the psychomotor skills reasonably needed to perform or assist with procedures, treatments, administration of medication, management and operation of diagnostic and therapeutic medical equipment, and such maneuvers to assist with patient care activities such as lifting, wheel chair guidance and mobility. The student must have sufficient levels of neuromuscular control and eye-to-hand coordination as well as possess the physical and mental stamina to meet the demands associated with extended periods of sitting, standing, moving and physical exertion required for satisfactory and safe performance in the clinical and classroom settings including performing CPR, if necessary. The student must possess the ability of manual dexterity that would be required for certain activities, such as drawing up solutions in a syringe.
The student must be able to develop and refine problem-solving skills that are crucial to practice as a nurse. Problem-solving involves the abilities to measure, calculate, reason, analyze and synthesize objective and subjective data, and to make decisions, often in a time urgent environment, that reflect consistent and thoughtful deliberation and sound clinical judgment. Each student must demonstrate mastery of these skills and possess the ability to incorporate new information from peers, teachers, and the nursing and medical literature to formulate sound judgment in patient assessment, intervention, evaluation, teaching and setting short and long-term goals.
Compassion, integrity, motivation, effective interpersonal skills and concern for others are personal attributes required of those in the nursing programs. Personal comfort and acceptance of the role of a nurse functioning under supervision of a clinical instructor or preceptor is essential for a nursing student. The student must possess the skills required for full utilization of the student's intellectual abilities; the exercise of good judgment; the prompt completion of all responsibilities in the classroom and clinical settings; and the development of mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients and other members of the health care team. Each student must be able to exercise stable, sound judgment and to complete assessment and interventional activities. The ability to establish rapport and maintain sensitive, interpersonal relationships with individuals, families, and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds is critical for practice as a nurse. The student must be able to adapt to changing environments; display flexibility; accept and integrate constructive criticism given in the classroom and clinical settings; effectively interact in the clinical setting with other members of the healthcare team; and learn to function cooperatively and efficiently in the face of uncertainties inherent in clinical practice.
The student must be able to adapt to and function effectively to stressful situations in both the classroom and clinical settings, including emergency situations. The student will encounter multiple stressors while in the nursing programs. These stressors may be (but are not limited to) personal, patient care/family, faculty/peer, and or program-related.
Technical Standards adapted from Drexel University, College of Nursing and Health Professionals.
Students who participate in clinical experiences must maintain current documentation of having completed a course on Basic Life Support (including both adults and pediatrics) for health care providers while in the nursing program. This course, along with appropriate documentation, must be obtained through the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association. Online CPR certifications are not accepted.
If the student is unable to fulfill this requirement due to physical inability to perform the procedures, he/she must provide medical documentation from a health care provider. Although the student has a disability, he/she must still provide evidence that a course was completed. This is in case the disabled student finds himself/herself in an emergency situation in which he/she is the only health care provider available who can verbally guide another individual through the process of rendering basic life support measures.
Students are required to have a current BLS certification prior to any clinical nursing activity. Failure to provide documentation of BLS will prohibit the student’s participation in and passing of clinical nursing courses. Be sure to submit a copy of BLS card to the Office of Student Services, Beck Hall, to remain in the program and participate in clinical courses.
Students are expected to fully participate in all classroom, laboratory, and clinical activities (collectively, “Learning Activities”) without restriction. Please refer to the Technical Standards Policy for details. A student is expected to inform (disclose) to a nursing faculty member or advisor (director of student services) any health related issue that may put either the student or client in danger.
A student may be required to provide evidence from his/her health care provider if restrictions in Learning Activities are needed due to health reasons, or if there is a concern that the student’s health may put the student or a client in danger. Depending upon the facts and circumstances, the School of Nursing may require evidence from a healthcare specialist before a student is permitted to participate or to resume participation in Learning Activities. To the extent possible, faculty will work with the student to achieve the required learning outcomes.
A student may need to withdraw from nursing courses (and all Learning Activities) in order to allow time to receive treatment and improve his/her health condition and to maintain the safety of clients. Refer to Leave of Absence policy for additional information.