The Practical Nursing (PN) program is designed to provide graduates with opportunities to develop knowledge, skills, attitudes and judgment necessary to assist individuals and families in community, acute and long term care settings. This program emphasizes care with a holistic, multidisciplinary approach that encourages the practical nurse to participate in collaborative practice with other members of the multi-disciplinary health care team. Upon successful completion of a national licensing exam, the licensed practical nurse can work in a variety of health care settings.
After licensing, graduates can work in health-care settings such as:
- Complex care and long term care homes
- Rehabilitation centres
- Doctors’ offices
- Occupational health units
- Community nursing services and private homes
What you will learn
Practical Nurses foster client empowerment in care planning and clinical decision making, and are cognizant of their unique biological, psychosocial, spiritual, cultural and environmental complexity. Practical Nurses care for clients across the lifespan, providing safe, knowledgeable and integrated care through critical thinking and clinical judgment. The program delivery supports a deliberate, client-focused approach with learning occurring through formal and informal study, mentorship, coaching, role modeling and experience. The program utilizes multiple approaches and embraces concept-based, case-based, skills-based and integrated learning experiences in the classroom, lab and clinical sites.
Practical Nurse Diploma Courses
After licensing, graduates can work in health-care settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centres, doctors' offices, clinics, occupational health units, community nursing services and private homes.
Locations & Dates
CNC programs have varying lengths and start dates to meet your needs, and are offered across multiple campuses where possible. Don’t see the campus you’re looking for? Check back with us soon as this page is updated throughout the school year.
Meeting minimum admission requirements does not guarantee a seat in the program.
Admission requirements must be completed within the past 5 years.
In the event of “equivalent” meeting admission requirements, the most recent course and grade will be considered.
- High school graduation, or equivalent
- BIO 130, or equivalent, with B- minimum
- English 12, or equivalent, English First Peoples 12, ENGL 050, ENGL 051 with B- minimum
- Foundations of Mathematics 11, Math 043 or equivalent with C+ minimum
- CASPer test completion and submission
Need help meeting these requirements? Check out our Academic Upgrading options.
Note 1: All applicants are required to complete an online computer-based assessment (CASPer) test in addition to meeting academic requirements. CASPer is a video-scenario based, situational judgement test which assesses for non-academic attributes and personal/professional characteristics that are important to the success of PN students and graduates. Completion of CASPer and submission of results are mandatory prior to the application deadline.
Note 2: Self-identified Canadian Aboriginal applicants who meet the admission requirements by the priority deadline will be given priority for 2 seats. If there are more than 2 qualified Aboriginal applicants at the priority deadline, these qualified applicants will be ranked accordingly.
English Language Competency Requirements
As English is the language of study in BC, students must meet English language proficiency at an appropriate level to be accepted into the provincial Practical Nursing program. These requirements can be satisfied through three years of full-time, face-to-face secondary or post-secondary education at an accredited institution where English is the language of instruction and is also one of the country’s official languages. English as a Second Language/Additional Language courses are not included in this three-year calculation.
In addition to meeting English language requirements for the Practical Nursing program, graduates must be able to demonstrate a level of proficiency required to be performance ready as a condition for registration and practice in British Columbia. See BCCNP’s website for details.
Prior to start of the program, all applicants must complete, or have completed within the past 5 years, MEDT 100 - Medical Terminology or equivalent with successful grade. Failing grade or non-completion will result in the loss of offered seat in the program.
By October 1, you must provide completed forms supplied in acceptance package. Incomplete certifications or documentation will prevent students from entering the clinical practice placements.
- Proof of current immunization status as outlined in the Practice Education Guidelines
- TB screening: Negative TB skin test or negative chest x-ray.
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) as outlined in the Practice Education Guidelines
- CPR-C or Basic Life Support (BLS) BLS is highly recommended. CPR on line courses that do not include face-to-face practice components are not acceptable. CPR certification must be maintained for duration of program.
- FIT tested for a N95 respirator
- Self-report on Suitability and Health.
Note 1: All costs associated with certifications, courses and/or documentation requirements are the student’s responsibility.
Note 2: Chemistry 11 or equivalent is recommended but not required.
In the event of over subscription to the program, applicants who meet the admission requirements will be reviewed through the Selection Criteria listed below. In case of ties, the qualification date will be the deciding factor.
- English 12 or equivalent - letter grade (i.e. A+ 4.33) 4.33
- BIO 130 or equivalent - letter grade 4.33
- Foundations of Mathematics 11 or equivalent - letter grade 4.33
- Chemistry 11 or equivalent – letter grade 4.33
- Geographical location: (max 2.0 points)
Northern residency as defined by the Northern Health Authority, 2.00 or
- Resident of BC or Yukon 1.00
- Persistent interest in the program as shown by repeated qualified applications 1.00
Total possible points MAX: 20.32
Invest in your future
The estimated cost for this program is $12,746.
- Year 1: $8,181
- Year 2: $4,565
These costs are an estimate. Student fees vary by campus.
Books for this program can be purchased from the bookstore.
Paying for college
We're here to help. You can apply for scholarships and bursaries through CNC. We can also help you find loans and other funding. Visit Financial aid to find out how.
Salaries and employment
Looking for a job? Check the student employment opportunities board.
The estimated cost for this program is $30,460.
This cost is an estimate and subject to change. This does not include registration fees, text books, medical insurance or living expenses.