2014/15 Program

Practical Nursing

Our Program

The Humber College Practical Nursing diploma program provides the skills and knowledge needed to become a registered practical nurse (RPN) over four academic semesters.

Nursing courses include concepts in medical/surgical, maternal/child, gerontology and paediatric nursing. In addition, there are two courses in pharmacotherapeutics, including intramuscular (IM) and intravenous (IV) medication administration skills, and blood product monitoring.

Practical nursing students are able to continually enhance their skills in Humber’s state-of-the-art health sciences, clinical simulation, computer and bioscience labs. Direct clinical practice and simulated laboratory experiences occur throughout the Practical Nursing program. Full- and part-time study options are available (full-time students complete the program in two calendar years; part-time students complete the program in three years and four months). For part-time students, courses occur in the evening hours and clinical rotations take place on Sundays and Mondays.

“My two years at Humber were the best two years of my life. The faculty were extremely knowledgeable and provided excellent support to ensure student success. The clinical placements were an amazing experience and the quality of placements provided by Humber was second to none.”

Bruce, 2012 graduate

Your Career

Begin a rewarding career as a practical nurse, a field in which the vast majority of our graduates find employment.

According to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, nursing is seen as a high growth career option, with more than 14,000 openings annually until at least 2020.

Graduates of Humber’s Practical Nursing program work in various health-care settings including acute-care hospitals, long-term care, rehabilitation services, community services, psychiatry, homes for the aging, public health units, community nursing agencies, clinics, private practices, schools and child-care centres.

Many graduates go on to complete postgraduate education for advanced knowledge and skills, which are used in specialty areas such as operating rooms, dialysis, cardiology and emergency.

Work Placement

Students participate in 1,035 hours of unpaid clinical placements, which take place each semester. The school arranges and communicates with all placements. A special feature of the Humber Practical Nursing program is the opportunity for an international placement, providing a unique experience. Semester two occurs in long-term care settings for two days each week. Throughout the first year of the program, Humber has a unique community service learning placement where by students will collaborate with faculty to access placements in a variety of community resources. Semester three takes place in rehabilitation, complex or acute-care settings. In semester two and three, students will participate in clinical simulation and/or Stilwell (a virtual learning community designed to represent a typical Canadian neighbourhood) settings, as part of their clinical learning experiences. In semester four, students complete preceptored (one-on-one placement alongside a registered practical nurse (RPN)) pre-graduate clinical practice.

For further information, visit healthsciences. humber.ca/resources/pre-placement-requirements/fieldclinical-placement.

Our Industry Partnerships

Humber’s external partners include: Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, Extendicare, Leisureworld Caregiving Centres, Halton Healthcare, Humber River Regional Hospital, Mackenzie Health, North York General Hospital, Sunnybrook Health Sciences, The Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario, The Scarborough Hospital, Toronto Homes for the Aged, Trillium Health Partners, UHN Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, William Osler Health System and numerous nursing homes and community agencies.

Partners provide placement opportunities for Humber students and input on the Practical Nursing curriculum, ensuring content is current and relevant.

Professional Accreditation, Endorsement and Recognition

Graduates of the Humber Practical Nursing program will be required to write the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination (CPNRE) in Ontario to practice. The Practical Nursing diploma program is approved by the College of Nurses of Ontario.

Note: Graduates wishing to register with the College of Nurses of Ontario must sign a declaration of their status regarding: citizenship; permanent residence; immigration; convictions of a criminal offence under the Narcotic Control Act/Food and Drug Act; involvement with respect to professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity in Ontario in another health profession; any mental or physical disorder, which makes it desirable in the public interest that the person not practice nursing. These conditions also apply throughout the program.

Admission Requirements
  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, or mature student status
  • Mandatory admission testing for senior-level biology, chemistry, writing, and math (fee of $35). Test results will determine your eligibility. Having the academic courses listed below will help prepare you for the tests. You may also prepare for the tests by reviewing The Complete Preparation Guide – Health Occupation Entrance Exams, published by Learning Express (ISBN 1-57685-7166). Students may also wish to view a practice math test. Applicants who have applied before February 1 will be equally considered. Applicants who apply after February 1, and/or who delay testing, will only be considered if space is available.

The following courses will assist applicants with the admissions test:

  • Grade 12 English (ENG4C or ENG4U). If English is not your first language, refer to the English Language Proficiency Policy
  • Grade 11 or Grade 12 Biology (SBI3C, SBI3U or SBI4U) or equivalent
  • Grade 11 or Grade 12 Chemistry (SCH3U, SCH4C or SCH4U) or equivalent
  • Grade 12 Mathematics (MAP4C, MCT4C, MDM4U, MCB4U, MGA4U, MCV4U or MHF4U)

Note: For more information, refer to Selection Procedures.

Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the program.

Additional Requirements
  • Complete immunization record
  • Valid Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)-C for Health Care Provider (HCP) and Standard First Aid certificates
  • Police Record Check: Students in programs or occupations involving direct contact with vulnerable persons are required to undergo a police record check. Refer to the Admission Information. Humber reserves the right to deny admission to this program based on an unpardoned criminal record that would be relevant to the academic or placement requirements of the program

The additional requirements must be completed upon acceptance into the program. Details outlining the process for fulfilling these requirements can be found at healthsciences.humber.ca/field-clinical-placement/overview.


The 2014/2015 fee for two semesters is
• domestic $4,010.56
• international $13,900.
Amounts listed are the total of tuition, lab and material fees, student service and auxiliary fees for the first two semesters of the 2014/2015 academic year.

Students in the part-time Practical Nursing program register and pay for two courses per semester based on the predetermined schedule.

Fees are subject to change. For more information, refer to Fees and Financial Assistance.

Additional Costs

Books; clinical uniforms; a health clearance; Canadian Red Cross CPR – HCP, Standard first aid; transportation and parking (varies).


Semester 1

Course Code Course Name
BIOS 101 Basic Human Anatomy
LANG 102 Writing Skills: FSE and RPN
NURS 160 Practical Nursing Theory 1
NURS 161 Practical Nursing Practice 1
NURS 162 Practical Nursing Health Assessment
PSYC 001 Psychology: Introduction

Semester 2

Course Code Course Name
BIOS 211 Basic Human Physiology
NURS 153 Practical Nursing Practice 3
NURS 260 Practical Nursing Theory 2
NURS 261 Practical Nursing Practice 2
NURS 263 Practical Nursing Pharmacotherapeutics 1
PSYC 002 Psychology: Developmental

Semester 3

Course Code Course Name
NURS 363 Practical Nursing Pharmacotherapeutics 2
NURS 366 Legal and Ethical Concepts
NURS 367 Practical Nursing Theory 3
NURS 368 Practical Nursing Practice 4
SOCI 002 Sociology: Introduction

Semester 4

Course Code Course Name
NURS 460 Practical Nursing Leadership
NURS 462 Practical Nursing Pre-Graduate Experience
NURS 466 Practical Nursing: Complex Issues and Patient Safety