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Practical Nursing – Diploma Program:

Practical Nursing – Diploma Program

1350 Clock Hours

12 months Program

Mode of Delivery: Campus





The Practical Nursing Program prepares graduates to practice within the scope of the Practical Nurse under the supervision of a Registered Nurse within structured, acute, intermediate, long term and ambulatory health care facilities. The student is taught to use the nursing process at the practical nurse level. The Practical Nursing Program is 12 months in length and completed over three 16-week semesters. 



Graduates of this program are eligible to apply to the Florida Board of Nursing to take the NCLEX examination to become Practical Nurses. Practical Nurses (LPNs) provide basic nursing care. They work under the direction of registered nurses and doctors. Employment of Practical Nurses is projected to grow 12 percent from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations. As the baby-boom population ages, the overall need for healthcare services is expected to increase. LPNs will be needed in residential care facilities and in-home health environments to care for older patients. Practical Nurses work in many settings, including nursing homes and extended care facilities, hospitals, physician’s offices, and private homes. 



PNP100 – Health Career Core Course

Theory: 45 Hours/Lab 15 Hours

This course includes the introduction of basic concepts and skills generic to all health care professionals. It includes an orientation to school, program, study and test taking skills, the health care delivery systems, communication skills, legal and ethical responsibilities, wellness and diseases, safety and security, emergency situations, computer literacy, medical terminology, knowledge of blood borne diseases including HIV/AIDS, Infection control includes the following skills: hand washing and gowning, gloving, and masking. Healthcare Provider CPR (BLS), first aide, monitoring and recording vital signs, and domestic violence, are presented along with a review of mathematics and science related to health care.

PNP101 – Anatomy & Physiology/Growth & Development

Theory: 25 Hours/Lab 5 Hours

Normal anatomy and physiology of the human body is studied. Course content progresses from the simplest form of life, the cell, to the more complex structures and functions of the human body. Course content is reinforced in succeeding courses. The course also includes growth and development, related to the stages of adult-hood, the aging process and appropriate nursing interventions, using critical thinking skills, safety in the geriatric environment, use of assistive devices, and elder abuse. Erickson’s basic patterns of psychosocial development are explored. The student is introduced to cultural and environmental influences that affect the adult patient. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease with the appropriate nursing care, related to signs and symptoms as presented by the patient, are incorporated in the course.


PNP102 - Fundamentals of Nursing I/Geriatric Care

Theory: 30 Hours/Lab 15 Hours

This course focuses on the basic personal care needs of the geriatric patient with the measurement of vital signs (TPR and BP), incorporating standard precautions and applications of safe nursing practice. It includes the performance of physical comfort and patient care procedures, physical comfort and safety functions specific to nursing and reporting any mental or physical changes in client’s condition to the Registered Nurse and following the patient's plan of care.

PNP103 – Geriatric Long Term Care/Clinical Practicum I

Clinical: 135 Hours 

This course will provide the student with actual hands on experience in a clinical setting. Clinical rotations will include Nursing Home (minimum of 20 hours) and Adult Daycare settings. Clinical assignments are task oriented, and designed to assist students to develop manipulative skills in providing personal care to patients with emphasis on the Geriatric patient. The clinical skills check-off list, and performance evaluations are tools used to measure students’ performance. Students will be given opportunity to utilize the nursing process in, assessment, planning care implementation and evaluation of care.


PNP104 - Fundamentals of Nursing II

Theory: 40 Hours/Lab 5 Hours

This is a fundamental knowledge and skills course, utilizing scientific principles. The course includes critical thinking and decision-making skills. A foundation for specific documentation in charting and reporting, and assisting with the collection of patient data will be emphasized. The admission, transfer, and discharge processes, hot and cold applications and monitoring oxygen therapy will be studied. The individual nutrients essential for optimal physical and mental health will be studied and Incorporated into the Food Pyramid Guide. The end products of protein, carbohydrate, and fat digestion will be introduced. Economic practices in purchasing, storing and preparing food for the individual and the family will be discussed. Serving a meal tray and feeding a patient are skills to be accomplished satisfactorily by the student. Standard hospital diets will be studied and diet modifications for the standard hospital diets are introduced. 


PNP105– Pharmacology

Theory: 35 Hours/Lab 10 Hours

This course includes calculations, preparation and administration of medications, drug classifications, resources and nursing implications. Safety and legal/ethical responsibilities in the drug administration are stressed. Students are given the opportunity to administer selected medications under direct supervision of the instructor in subsequent courses. Observation, communication and documentation are emphasized. Course content is reinforced and expanded in succeeding courses.

PNP106 - Medical-Surgical Nursing I

Theory: 40 Hours/Lab 5 Hours

This course is designed to provide the student with concepts specific to pre and postoperative care, including pain management. Mental health nursing is emphasized with focus on therapeutic communication skills, chemical substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and personality disorders. An overview of the oncology patient will be introduced.

PNP107 – Clinical Practicum II

Clinical: 135 Hours

This course is designed to enable students to gain clinical experience in an acute Medical/Surgical unit. Clinical are graded on a Pass/Fail basis.

PNP108 - Medical/Surgical Nursing II

Theory: 95 Hours/Lab 25 Hours

This course includes the disorders of the body systems. Nursing assessment, diagnostic tests, nutritional modifications, signs and symptoms, pathophysiology, psycho-social aspects, medical management, and appropriate nursing interventions will be studied. The study of each body system centers on health alterations which affect the essential activities of daily living and human function. Appropriate nursing interventions are included in each course.

PNP109 – Clinical Practicum III

Clinical: 135 Hours

Students continue Medical/Surgical clinical practice to solidify their theoretical knowledge gained in an acute med/surg unit. Clinicals are graded.


PNP110 – Obstetrics/Gynecology/Maternity

Theory: 50 Hours

Pregnancy and childbirth are viewed as a normal process. Emphasis is placed on the care of the mother from the conception through involution, and care of the newborn. Integral parts of this course includes body structure and function, growth and development, medical/surgical asepsis, nutrition, pharmacology, multi-cultural factors, and safety. Fundamental Nursing Skills and Practices are incorporated and skills pertinent to obstetrics are taught. The students will learn to recognize the normal and abnormal physiological changes which can occur during pregnancy and childbirth. Interpersonal relationships, legal/ethical aspects, patient education, discharge planning, ethnic and cultural practices related to pregnancy and childbirth are discussed, as well as teenage and other high-risk pregnancies. Beginning with growth and development from neonatal through adolescence, common diseases and disorders of children are studied. The student learns to provide care to children, taking into account, size, level of comprehension and altered health state. Emphasis is placed on nurse/child/parent relationship and safety in the delivery of nursing care. The students’ knowledge of medication is expanded to Include consideration of dosage alteration in the administration of medication to children. The concept of play therapy, in providing care, is a component in the course. Community, state, and federal agencies, concerned with care and well-being of children are discussed in this unit.


PNP111 – Pediatrics

Theory: 80 Hours/Lab 5 Hours

Apply nursing care for the pediatric patient, apply safety principles for the pediatric patient, describe general characteristics, particular needs and problems with the pediatric patient. Identify signs and symptoms of common disorders/diseases, implement prescribed nutrition requirements, provide diversion and recreational activities. 


PNP112 – Clinical Practicum IV (Pediatric/Obstetrics/Gynecology/Maternity) 

Clinical: 135 Hours

Utilizing the nursing process in the clinical setting, the student will provide support and offer instruction for the care of the new family unit. Clinical rotations are mainly in obstetrical departments with emphasis on mother-baby care, and observational experiences in labor and delivery suite. Student will gain knowledge of common diseases and disorders of children. Utilizing hospital pediatric department, physicians’ offices, well-baby clinics and care centers.


PNP113 - Mental Health

Theory: 40 Hours

Provide bio-psycho-social support, emotional needs of patient and family, coping mechanisms. Differentiate between mental health and mental illness and know signs and symptoms of various mental health disorders and treatment modalities for the various mental health disorders. The student must be able to identify suicide ideations in the depressed person, understand treatment and resources for addicted clients; recognize drug seeking behaviors; the student must also be able to correlate Maslow’s Hierarchy with both physical and mental components of health.


PNP114 - Mental Health Clinical

Clinical: 20 Hours

The practicum portion of this course may include experiences at psychiatric care facilities, long term care facilities and community health care experiences. Students will participate in different treatment interventions (i.e. group therapy, and art therapy), collaborative participation with mental health professionals, and development of specific treatment plans.


PNP 115 – Community Health Concepts

Theory: 30 Hours

Demonstrate an understanding of and apply wellness and disease concept, discuss the adverse effects of the use of alcohol, tobacco, and both legal and illegal drugs; infection control techniques designed to prevent the spread of disease caused by blood borne pathogens to the care of all patients following Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines; explain the impact of the global economy on business organizations; assist with restorative (rehabilitative) activities; assist patients/resident to reach the optimum level of independence; health and its socio-ecological determinants; enabling health and wellness; community health in practice, community health in globalized era; sustaining health for the family and individual to include the children; adults and aging adults.


PNP116 – Clinical Practicum V (Advance Skills)

Clinical: 160 Hours

The hospital-based experience will provide clinical patient assignments which are increased in complexity, with emphasis placed on the students’ ability to prioritize and organize nursing care for multiple patients. Medication administration techniques are refined by the student. The 90hours community-based experiences will be observational only and explore a variety of community-based settings. These experiences will assist the student in assuming the responsibilities of an entry level practitioner on successful completion of the licensing exam.


PNP117 – Personal Family and Intrapersonal Relationships

Theory: 20 Hours

The student will learn to use oral and written communication skills in creating, expressing and interpreting information and ideas, apply basic speaking and active listening skills including reflection, restatement, and clarification techniques, develop basic observational skills and related documentation strategies in written and oral form. Provide biological, psychological, and social support, discuss family roles and their significance to health, respond to patient and family emotional needs, provide biological, psychological and social support, discuss family roles and their significance to health. Respond to patient and family emotional needs. 


PNP118- Graduate Transition

Theory: 15 Hours

This course prepares the student for transition to the graduate role. Preparation for licensure is accomplished by the student completing application for state board examination. Further discussions will take place regarding the role of the Florida Board of Nursing and the purpose and content of the Nurse Practice Act. Career opportunities are explored. The home health experiences will be observational only. The student will have an opportunity to compare the variations in the provision of care in the patient’s home and in an institutional setting.

Total Program Hours: 1350



Students begin to learn NCLEX strategies in health science courses and those skills advance well into the practical nurse courses, through practice and testing. At the time of exit, students of the Practical Nursing Program must follow the following guidelines in order to qualify for program exit and advance to subsequent completion: 

  • Meet with the program director and academic committee who will review a student’s overall appraisal, academic progress and any notes in file. 

  • Demonstrate knowledge of NCLEX Strategies by verbally responding to questions concerning the methods used in question construction. 

  • Complete an in-house NCLEX Review. 

  • Complete a series of NCLEX Diagnostic Readiness Exams demonstrating a pass rate predictive percentage of 85% in the Final Diagnostic. 

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