Associate of Science and Nursing
The ASN curriculum is designed to produce a competent entry-level graduate nurse who demonstrates professional behaviors, communication skills, assessment skills, clinical decision-making skills, caring interventions, teaching and learning capabilities, and collaboration skills with the inter-professional team when managing care for clients. The curriculum emphasizes an education based on the college’s student learning objectives which promote diversity in a technologically enhanced environment to include distance learning delivery methods.
The philosophy of the Georgia Highlands College Associate Degree Nursing Program is congruent with the philosophy of Georgia Highlands College to maintain a teaching/learning environment which promotes inclusiveness and provides educational opportunities, programs and services of excellence in response to identified needs. The Georgia Highlands College Nursing Program was established in 1971 based on the identified need to provide a two-year nursing degree for the citizens of Floyd County and surrounding communities.
The ASN curriculum provides a strong educational basis to prepare graduates to take the licensure exam for an RN and practice as a beginning level professional nurse. The faculty is dedicated to preparing associate degree nurses who are competent, caring professionals who possess effective communication skills. This is congruent with the core components and competencies as outlined in the Outcomes and Competencies for Graduates of Associate Degree Programs of Nursing developed by the National League for Nursing. The ultimate goal of nursing education is to prepare students for employment as competent, registered nurses who are qualified to enhance client movement along the continuum to their optimal state of wellness or health. Specific emphasis is placed on assisting clients related to identified community health risks and common conditions.
The faculty believes that a competent nurse is one who possesses nursing knowledge, assessment skills, teaching skills, and critical thinking skills to assist clients throughout the life span to promote and maintain wellness. A caring attitude is considered by the faculty to be respectful, empathetic, and sensitive. This means that the nurse exhibits nurturing, protective, compassionate, client-centered behaviors. Professionalism is a key component of nursing. Nurses are expected to demonstrate accountability for their own behaviors while adhering to the American Nurses Association Standards of Professional Nursing Practice and the Code of Ethics for Nursing. Effective and professional communication is the foundation for developing therapeutic relationships for the purpose of providing patient care and collaborating with other members of the health care team. Communication is defined as having both oral and written components and includes the critical thinking skills involved in comprehending and interpreting the written word.
In developing a professional nurse, the faculty believes that learning begins in a supportive, caring environment. Learning is a dynamic process that involves acquisition of skills, attitudes and values which are achieved by changes in patterns of thinking and behavior. The faculty believes learning is best achieved when concepts progress from simple to complex utilizing a variety of teaching methods and principles of adult learning where students take responsibility for their own learning. Success in learning is enhanced by role modeling and mentoring. The frequent individual interactions between faculty and students offer opportunities for students to learn professional roles. The faculty acknowledges preceptorship as a valuable learning tool. Preceptorship experience gives the students an opportunity to apply knowledge, utilize research, enhance technical skills and participate in the reality of nursing practice.
Georgia Highlands College recognizes the skills and knowledge of LPN’s and paramedics to build upon previously learned content and advance into a higher degree program. The associate degree nurse is prepared to function under the guidance and supervision of the baccalaureate or advanced degree nurse. The faculty believes that nurses with baccalaureate, master’s or doctoral degrees provide leadership for complex health care, research, and management of the client in the community. Articulation is valued by the faculty in an effort to facilitate nursing career mobility and graduates are encouraged with faculty support to return to higher educational programs to complete undergraduate and graduate nursing programs.
ASN Mission Statement
The Georgia Highlands College Nursing Program reflects the mission statement of Georgia Highlands College. The curriculum is designed to produce a competent entry-level graduate nurse who demonstrates professional behaviors, interpersonal communication skills, assessment skills, clinical decision-making skills, caring interventions, teaching and learning capabilities, and collaboration skills when managing care for clients. The curriculum emphasizes an education based on the college’s student learning objectives which promote diversity in a technologically enhanced environment to include distance learning delivery methods.
Application of these principles is illustrated by the educational objectives for the ASN program:
- Appraise the physical, developmental, functional, behavioral, cultural, and spiritual needs of clients in providing caring interventions to meet the identified needs.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of oral, written, and electronic communication.
- Utilize therapeutic communication, caring interventions, and critical thinking to provide client-centered nursing care.
- Apply evidence-based practice in creating comprehensive plans of care and managing safe care for individuals and groups of clients.
- Manage care to maintain and promote wellness for clients utilizing a variety of healthcare systems.
- Analyze personal professional behaviors, competencies, and accountability within the legal, ethical and regulatory framework of nursing practice.
- Function as a client advocate in collaboration with other members of the interprofessional team to facilitae achievement of optimal client health outcomes.
- Utilize information systems to accurately plan, provide, and manage care for clients or groups of clients.
- Collaborate with the interproessional team members to achieve maximum utlization of community resources in providing health eduation and services to clients form diverse backgrounds.
- Execute clinical skills competently in various practice settings.