Subject: Student Success


Revised: April 2021

Effective date: April 2021

Review date: April 2024

Responsible Party: Level I:  UAAC & GAAC; Level II:  Associate Dean for Academic Affairs


Introduction and Purpose:

The MSU College of Nursing adheres to the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accreditation standards and is committed to the principle of equal opportunity by promoting an inclusive, diverse and supportive environment for external members of the campus community, employees, and students.  This principle applies regardless of race, color, national origin (ancestry), sex, sexual preference/orientation, gender identity, gender expression, transgender, marital or parental status, age, creed, religion, political beliefs, ability status, genetic information, or status as a veteran as outlined by the MSU Office of Institutional Equity.  The MSU College of Nursing (CON) seeks to produce highly skilled and compassionate nurses.  The CON has a responsibility to the public to ensure its graduates can become fully competent nurses capable of fulfilling American Nurses Association (ANA) Standards of Practice.  Students are expected to develop a robust nursing knowledge base and the requisite clinical skills to appropriately apply their knowledge and skills.  This includes needing to effectively interpret information and contribute to patient-centered decisions across a broad spectrum of healthcare situations and settings.  It is important that persons admitted to the CON possess the intelligence, integrity, compassion, humanitarian concern, physical and emotional capacity necessary to practice nursing.


The CON’s facilities, programs, and services are accessible to all students.  This includes students with disabilities (as defined by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the ADA of 1990, and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008).  Technical standards have been developed to reflect the essential relationship of nursing education to the practice of professional nursing.  These technical standards are requirements for admission, progression, and graduation.  The requirements may be achieved with or without reasonable accommodations, the cost of which will be borne by the institution. The standards should not serve as a deterrent to any applicant with disabilities who desires to pursue education in this program.  Applicants with disabilities bring unique perspectives which contribute to the diversity of the student population and create a diverse health-care workforce of culturally competent practitioners who can meet the needs of their patients.  Applicants with questions regarding reasonable accommodations are encouraged to contact the MSU Office of Disability Services to determine what type of accommodations, if any, they may be eligible to receive.


  1. The CON endeavors to select applicants who have the ability to become competent nurses who put the patient first in the delivery of safe and effective medical care. Although these standards serve to explain the necessary abilities of all students, they are not intended to deter any student for whom reasonable accommodations will allow the fulfillment of the complete curriculum.


  1. The intention of an applicant or student to practice a narrow part of clinical nursing or to pursue a non-clinical career does not alter the requirement that all nursing students meet all graduation requirements. These include but are not limited to taking and achieving competence in the full curriculum, receiving satisfactory evaluations of academic and professional conduct, and successfully completing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) Registered Nurse licensure examination.


  1. Students must continue to meet the technical standards throughout their enrollment.


Technical Standards

The MSU College of Nursing provides the following examples of technical standards to inform prospective and enrolled students of a sampling of technical standards required in completing the nursing science curriculum.  The technical standards reflect a sample of the performance abilities and characteristics that are necessary to successfully complete the requirements of the MSU College of Nursing. The standards are not requirements of admission into the programs and the examples are not all-inclusive.  Applicants should review the standards to develop a better understanding of the skills, abilities, and behavioral characteristics required to successfully complete the programs.  Key areas for technical standards in nursing include having the ability and skill of (a) acquiring fundamental knowledge, (b) developing communication skills, (c) interpreting data, and (d) integrating knowledge to establish clinical judgment.  Appropriate professional student behavior expectations are separately addressed in College of Nursing policy. 




Acquiring fundamental knowledge

1.      Ability to learn in classroom and educational settings.

2.      Ability to find sources of knowledge and acquire the knowledge.

3.      Ability to be a life-long learner.

4.      Novel and adaptive thinking.

·        Acquire, conceptualize, and use evidence-based information from demonstration and experiences in the basic and applied sciences, including but not limited to information conveyed through online coursework, lectures, group seminars, small group activities, and physical demonstrations.

·        Develop health-care solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule-based.

Developing communication skills

1.      Communication abilities for sensitive and effective interactions with patients (persons, families, and/or communities.

2.      Communication abilities for effective interaction with the health-care team (patients, their supports, other professional and non-professional team members.

3.      The ability to make sense of information gathered from communication.

4.      Social intelligence.

·        Accurately elicit or interpret information such as medical history and other information to effectively evaluate a patient’s condition.

·        Accurately convey and interpret information using one or more means of communication (verbal, written, assisted [such as TTY] and/or electronic) to patients and the health-care team.

·        Effectively communicate in teams.

·        Determine a deeper meaning or significance in what is being expressed.

·        Connect with others to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions.

Interpreting Data

1.      Ability to observe patient conditions and responses to health and illness.

2.      Ability to assess and monitor health needs.

3.      Computational thinking.

4.      Cognitive load management.

·        Obtain and interpret information from assessment maneuvers such as assessing respiratory function, cardiac function, blood pressure, blood sugar, neurological status, etc.

·        Obtain and interpret information from diagnostic representations of physiologic phenomena during a comprehensive assessment of patients.

·        Obtain and interpret information from assessment of patient’s environment and responses to health across the continuum.

·        Obtain and interpret evaluation information about responses to nursing action.

·        Translate data into abstract concepts and to understand data-based reasoning.

Integrating knowledge to establish clinical judgment.

1.      Critical thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making ability needed to care for persons, families and/or communities across the health continuum and within (or managing or improving) their environments – in one or more environments of care.

2.      Intellectual and conceptual abilities to accomplish the BSN Essentials.

3.      New media literacy.

4.      Transdisciplinarity.

5.      Design mindset.

·        Accomplish, direct, or interpret assessment of persons, families and/or communities and develop, implement, and evaluate plans of care or direct the development, implementation, and evaluation of care.

·        Critically assess and develop content that uses new media forms and to leverage these media for persuasive communication.

·        Literacy in an ability to understand concepts across disciplines.

·        Represent and develop tasks and work processes for desired outcomes.

Adapted from Meeks, L.M., Jain, N.R., & Laid, E.P. (Eds.). (2021). Equal access for students with disabilities: The guide for health science and professional education (2nd ed.). Springer.