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Critical Care Nursing

Advanced Certificate

Program Overview

Are you an RN wishing to expand your current skill set and knowledge base, enabling you to provide care for patients with complex multi-system health issues?  Do you thrive in a high intensity environment, and desire to be a part of a multidisciplinary team that seamlessly blends knowledge and technology, all while delivering holistic, evidence-based patient care? If so, a career in critical care nursing might be the path for you.

Critical care nurses are skilled health-care providers who are able to rapidly integrate knowledge and skill. An essential part of the health-care team, critical care nurses work with a variety of health-care professionals, providing care to patients and families during times of stress and crisis. 

Saskatchewan Polytechnic’s Critical Care Nursing is an advanced certificate program for practicing registered nurses (RNs). It is offered through a blend of distance education and hands-on lab and clinical practicum experiences in Saskatchewan. You can choose to study fast track or regular track, whichever suits your schedule.

The program integrates information through a step-by-step approach, building on a comprehensive knowledge base. Through online classes, skills labs, simulation experience and clinical practicums, you’ll broaden your knowledge and skills in:

  • What it means to work in critical care and concepts such as patient- and family centered care, infection control, and working with a team.
  • Anatomy and physiology with a critical care focus.
  • Assessment and diagnosis in critical care.
  • Disorders and management in critical care.
  • Multisystem dysfunction and management in critical care.
  • Exploring the impact of critical care on you, the long-term outcomes on patients, future concepts in critical care, and the process of change.

Why Saskatchewan Polytechnic?

Saskatchewan Polytechnic is one of the most respected providers of nursing education in Canada. Our Critical Care Nursing program follows standards set by the Canadian Association of Critical Care Nursing. When you graduate, you’ll have the foundation you need to successfully write the national critical care certification exam.

A Stepping Stone

If you’re registered with the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association (SRNA) while taking the program, you can apply for practice hours to maintain your registration. On graduation, you qualify for transfer credits towards post-RN degree programs at the Athabasca University of Alberta.

To Apply

Before you apply, please email criticalcarenursing@saskpolytech.ca or contact Heidi Kirk, administrative support, at 306-775-7445 (toll free at 1-866-467-4278), to determine the next available intake based on clinical capacity. Provide your name and phone number, and our program team will respond.

The Critical Care Nursing program is open to registered nurses actively licensed with the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association (SRNA).

Refer to Frequently Asked Questions for additional information.

Career and Salary Information

Your Career

As a graduate of the Critical Care Nursing program, you’re qualified to be a leader and team player in critical care settings, including intensive care, cardiac care and surgical intensive care units. In Saskatchewan, some health regions sponsor and hire local RNs to take the program and work in critical care areas in regional hospitals and tertiary care centres.

For more information, visit www.healthcareersinsask.ca

Length and Start Date

Start Date(s):

Please contact criticalcarenursing@saskpolytech.ca or Heidi Kirk, administrative support, at 306-775-7445 (toll free at 1-866-467-4278), to determine the next available intake based on clinical capacity. Provide your name and phone number and the program team will respond.



Length: 11 weeks (fast track; full-time); 18 weeks (regular track; part-time)

Locations

  • Distance Learning options available

Admissions

Admission Requirements

Before you apply, please contact criticalcarenursing@saskpolytech.ca or call Heidi Kirk, administrative support, at 306-775-7445 (toll free at 1-866-467-4278) to determine the next available intake based on clinical capacity.

  • You must be a registered nurse, actively licensed with the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association (SRNA).
  • English Language Requirement documentation is considered met as evidenced through licensure with the registered nurses’ licensing body in Canada.

The following are not required on admission but are required prior to participating in the clinical component:

  • Current immunization
  • Current CPR Health Care Provider “C” AED or equivalent
  • Transferring, Lifting and Repositioning (TLR) certification
  • Fit Testing Results (including the number associated with the appropriate mask)

Admission Method

First Qualified/First Admitted

The First Qualified/First Admitted (FQFA) process is used for the majority of Saskatchewan Polytechnic programs. When we determine that you meet the program's admission requirements, you will be offered admission based on the date you fully qualify for the program. The earlier you provide the appropriate documents and information that qualify you for admission to the next intake, the earlier you might begin your studies. Your application, once qualified, is always considered for the next intake. 

Applicants to programs with multiple intakes in an academic year remain in the application pool until the last intake for that academic year has begun. Programs using the FQFA process receive applications year round and maintain an application pool for each academic year. Qualified applicants who are not offered a seat must reapply for the next academic year. 

Sponsored programs or programs targeted to specific groups do not accept applications year round or maintain an application pool.

See Admission Processes for more information about this method of admission.

Tuition and Fees

Estimates are based on current rates and are subject to change. Amounts for a program may vary by campus. Totals shown here include all mandatory fees as well as books and supplies. For a complete breakdown of tuition and fees for this program, click here to access the Saskatchewan Polytechnic campus Tuition and Fee Schedules.

 

$2,900

The annual cost varies according to the current tuition rate and the credit units for each course that you are taking. Tuition for the entire program is due by the first day of orientation. Please contact criticalcarenursing@saskpolytech.ca or call Heidi Kirk, administrative support, at 306-775-7445 (toll free at 1-866-467-4278) for more information.

Courses

Expand All +
Code
Name/Description
Credits
 
CLIN 233
Fundamental Clinical Practice Education in Critical Care
5
Show course details
You will participate in a clinical experience focused on the major body systems and related alterations in function. You will integrate aspects of the theory into the delivery of patient care. You will be guided by a faculty member and/or a clinical nurse educator and critical care preceptor in the clinical practice education.
Credit Units: 5
Course Hours: 72.0
Prerequisites(s): NRSG 284, NRSG 285(concurrent)
Potential Learning Method(s): Clinical/Practicum
CLIN 234
Progressive Clinical Practice Education in Critical Care
7
Show course details
You will participate in clinical practice education and manage the care of critical care patients with multisystem dysfunction through integrating all aspects of the program into your nursing practice in the critical care area. You will be guided by a faculty member and/or a clinical nurse educator and critical care preceptor in the clinical practice education.
Credit Units: 7
Course Hours: 108.0
Prerequisites(s): NRSG 285
Potential Learning Method(s): Clinical/Practicum
NRSG 281
Introduction to Critical Care Nursing within a Patient and Family-Centred Environment
1
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You will explore what it means to be a critical care nurse and to work with the critical care team. You will examine ethical, legal, cultural and professional issues within critical care. You will be introduced to the concepts of critical care nursing and aspects of the critical care environment with a lens of patient safety and patient-and-family-centred care.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 15.0
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group
NRSG 282
Anatomy & Physiology Overview
1
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You will discuss anatomy and physiology with a critical care focus.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 15.0
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group
NRSG 283
Assessment and Diagnostics in Critical Care
2
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You will examine arterial blood gasses, electrocardiogram monitoring and rhythm interpretation, and principles and concepts of hemodynamics. You will also examine assessment and diagnostics relating to the major body systems, transfer of patient care, and interdisciplinary rounds.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 35.0
Prerequisites(s): NRSG 281, NRSG 282
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group
NRSG 284
Fundamental Concepts of Critical Care
3
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You will explain the management of the critical care patient, focusing on alterations in the body systems.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 40.0
Prerequisites(s): NRSG 283
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group
NRSG 285
Progressive Concepts of Critical Care
4
Show course details
You will examine the management of critical care patients with multisystem dysfunction, incorporating a patient-and-family-centered focus. You will strengthen your abilities to judge the relevance of data, to integrate data and prioritize care, as well as evaluate the effectiveness of interventions.
Credit Units: 4
Course Hours: 60.0
Prerequisites(s): CLIN 233(concurrent)
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group
NRSG 286
Impact, Challenges and Future of Critical Care
1
Show course details
You will explore the impact of critical illness and how the critical care experience affects patients, families and yourself. You will discuss emerging concepts and ways to incorporate change and best practices within critical care.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 15.0
Prerequisites(s): CLIN 234(concurrent)
Potential Learning Method(s): Online, Print Distance Group

PLAR & Transfer Credit

Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition

Saskatchewan Polytechnic recognizes that adults learn in many different ways and through many different means. This includes acquiring knowledge and skills through life and work experience or non-formal training.


Transfer Credit

Many Saskatchewan Polytechnic students benefit from transferring credit. You may be eligible to transfer credit from or to another college or university. To learn more, visit our transfer credit web page.

 

Student Awards

Thanks to the generosity of donors and alumni, Saskatchewan Polytechnic gives away more than $2 million in student awards during the academic year.

Saskatchewan Polytechnic offers student awards for every certificate and diploma program at every campus. You don't have to be a brainiac to receive a student award. Not all student awards are based on marks - some are based on financial need or things like community or volunteer involvement.

More about scholarships

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