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Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing (BPN) Degree Completion Program for Graduates of 2010 and Beyond

and

Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing (BPN) Degree Completion Program for Graduates Prior to 2010

Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: March 13, 2014

  1. Why should I consider the new Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing (BPN) Degree Completion program for my nursing education? What sets this program apart from other programs?

    Psychiatric nursing is a distinct profession that provides you with the opportunity to work with clients with mental illness, psychiatric disorders and developmental and/or cognitive difficulties to function at their maximum potential. As a registered psychiatric nurse (RPN) you have gained invaluable experience in delivering quality psychiatric nursing services. The BPN Degree Completion program will provide you with the most contemporary and evidence-informed practices in psychiatric nursing. You will gain additional knowledge, skills, values and attitudes necessary to work in a wide variety of mental health settings and the standards and competencies related to clinical practice, leadership and management, education and research.

    Saskatchewan Polytechnic has more than 43 years of experience in the delivery of quality nursing education. Saskatchewan Polytechnic offered the psychiatric nursing diploma program from 1972 to 1996 and again from 2008 to the present. The Saskatchewan Polytechnic School of Nursing is also a leader in reaching students where they live through various delivery modalities and technological innovations.

    Nursing faculty are experienced in a wide range of programming, including baccalaureate education and advanced education for RNs and RPNs. Our faculty are masters prepared and have previously taught in the Nursing Education Program of Saskatchewan (NEPS), the degree program that offered competencies for both RNs and RPNs. By teaching in both classroom and clinical practice settings, faculty assist students in linking theory with practice.

  2. What is the Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing Degree Completion program?

    The BPN Degree Completion program prepares diploma prepared RPNs with additional contemporary knowledge, evidence-informed practices, skills, values and attitudes required at a baccalaureate level to work in a wide variety of mental health settings including clinical practice, leadership and management, education and research.

    The program is offered as a part-time program, with one or two courses per term. The BPN Degree Completion program for graduates of 2010 and beyond is completed over six terms or two years. The program has 36 credits, with 705 hours over 68 weeks.

    The BPN Degree Completion program for graduates prior to 2010 is completed over eight terms or 2.5 years. The program has 47 credits, with 864 hours over 87 weeks.

  3. What is the credential of this program?

    Saskatchewan Polytechnic is granting the degree of Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing. The BPN program is Saskatchewan Polytechnic’s first degree program offering.

  4. Is this program approved and by whom?

    BPNAs required by Saskatchewan legislation, this new program is approved by the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan (RPNAS). The RPNAS has granted conditional approval, which represents the highest level of approval possible for a new program.

    This program is offered with the written authorization of the Minister of Advanced Education effective July 1, 2013. This authorization was provided after the program proposal underwent a quality assurance review and was found to meet the standards established by the Minister. Prospective students are responsible for satisfying themselves that the program and degree will be appropriate to their needs.

  5. Are graduates of the new BPN Degree Completion Programs required to take the Registered Psychiatric Nursing of Canada Examination, the RPNCE?

    No, students enrolled in the BPN degree completion programs are not required to write the RPNCE as they are already registered with the RPNAS and eligible to practice as a RPN.

  6. Will the program be recognized by other universities if I wish to take graduate studies in nursing?

    There is reciprocity in the western provinces and territories related to psychiatric nursing education.

    There is only one graduate program, the Masters of Psychiatric Nursing, which is offered by Brandon University. There are a limited number of seats in this program.

  7. What are the admission requirements?

    The admission requirements for the BPN Degree Completion Program for graduates of 2010 and beyond are as follows:
    • Saskatchewan Polytechnic Psychiatric Nursing program diploma from 2010 and beyond
    • Active registration and in good standing with the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan or from the regulatory body in which the student resides
    • A letter of recommendation from a current employer

    The admission requirements for the BPN Degree Completion program for graduates prior to 2010 are as follows:
    • Psychiatric Nursing program diploma received prior to 2010
    • Active registration and good standing with the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Association of Saskatchewan or from the regulatory body in which the student resides
    • A letter of recommendation from a current employer

    The English Language Proficiency (ELP) requirements will apply to students new to Saskatchewan Polytechnic. 
  8. What is the delivery method for the BPN Degree Completion programs?

    All courses for the BPN Degree Completion programs will be delivered using a blended learning approach with online learning and some distance learning. The program will integrate theory with clinical practice education. Simulation learning will be used to develop clinical practice skills, critical inquiry, and clinical judgment.

  9. Where will the program be offered?

    The BPN Degree Completion programs will be delivered through online and distance delivery methods. This means that students can access the courses from where they live.

  10. How many seats will be available?

    There will be 15 seats in the BPN Degree Completion program for graduates of 2010 and beyond.

    There will be 7 seats available in the BPN Degree Completion program for graduates prior to 2010.

  11. Will out-of-province applicants be considered?

    Yes, out-of-province students will be considered.

  12. Where do I apply?

    There will be one intake per year, beginning each fall. You can apply online or by paper application. Additional details about application can be found on this "How to Apply" page.

  13. When can I apply?

    Applications for both the BPN Degree Completion program for graduates of 2010 and beyond and for the BPN Degree Completion program for graduates prior to 2010 are open on a continuous basis.

  14. What is the application fee?

    The application fee is $50 for applicants who apply online and $75 for applicants who apply using paper application.

  15. Is there an application deadline?

    Applications will be accepted on a first qualified first admitted (FQFA) basis. This means that if you meet all the requirements, then your application will be considered on the basis of the date and time that you submitted your complete application.

  16. When will I know if I am accepted into the program?

    The registrar will notify you of your acceptance into the program.

  17. Are there any additional requirements following acceptance into the program?

    All successful applicants must provide the results of a criminal record check, proof of Standard First Aid and CPR Health Care Provider “C” AED or equivalent, and an up to date immunization record prior to the commencement of the program.

  18. Can I take the program part-time?

    The BPN Degree Completion programs are offered as a part-time program with one or two courses per term.

  19. What is the start date for the BPN Degree Completion programs?

    The BPN Degree Completion program for graduates of 2010 and beyond l begins annually in September.

    The BPN Degree Completion program for graduates prior to 2010 begins annually in January.
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