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Nursing Practice: Complex Health Challenges

Course Code: NURS 4513
Faculty: Health Sciences
Credits: 5.0
Semester: 15
Learning Format: Practicum
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

In this nursing practice course, students have the opportunity to provide safe, competent, compassionate, and evidence-informed nursing care in a variety of acute, complex medical surgical settings. Grounded in professional integrity, participants practice with a greater level of autonomy. Using critical inquiry, reflection, and analytical reasoning processes that are informed by multiple sources, students make nursing practice decisions that promote the health and well-being of individuals. Students have the opportunity to utilize the expertise of a variety of health team members and demonstrate leadership and interprofessional collaboration.

Course Content

In this experiential course, nursing practice with adult clients experiencing acute, complex health challenges is emphasized.  Building on previous learning, experiences reflect the concepts and essential content from all courses in the semester and reflect the core curriculum concepts. This nursing practice experience occurs in a variety of acute medical surgical settings. 


Responsibility and accountability

Knowledge integration

Application of knowledge

Evidence-informed practice

Provision of care

Holistic assessment

Collaboration with clients

Interprofessional collaboration

  • Partnership
  • Shared decision-making

Nursing practice decision-making

Evaluation of client care

Ethics of care

Client safety

Reflective practice

Methods of Instruction

It is the intent of faculty to facilitate student learning, and promote critical inquiry, reflection and analytical reasoning through a variety of learning processes such as decision-making analysis, group discussion, and reflection on practice.

Means of Assessment

The course evaluation is consistent with Douglas College Evaluation Policy.  A course evaluation schedule and other course evaluation information are provided on the Instructor’s Course Outline which is available to students at the beginning of each semester.  A nursing practice assessment form is used to guide nursing practice course evaluation.  This form includes indicators of successful nursing practice at the end of the semester.  Nursing practice congruent with these indicators is an essential component of successful completion of this course.  This is a mastery course. 

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this course, successful students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a greater level of autonomy in the provision of safe, competent, compassionate, and evidence-informed nursing care for clients experiencing acute, complex medical surgical health challenges.
  • Use multiple sources of knowledge to formulate client-centered nursing practice decisions that promote health through critical inquiry, reflection, and analytical reasoning.
  • Use a relational perspective and an ethic of caring to engage with individuals and families in acute medical surgical settings to promote health and well-being.
  • Demonstrate leadership qualities that promote and support interprofessional collaboration, advocacy and change.

course prerequisites

NURS 3411 AND NURS 3412 AND NURS 3413 AND NURS 3415 AND NURS 3417

Students in the BSN program are required to maintain a passing grade of 65% (C+) in all courses in order to progress in the program.


NURS 4511 AND NURS 4512 AND NURS 4515

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.