Practical Nurse


Fall 2020 Update

Course Delivery Summary:

  • Year 1: Blended
  • Year 2: Blended

Over half of the courses in the program are well suited to online delivery, which is how they will be offered for Fall 2020. Other courses require hands-on learning experience in nursing lab settings on campus, and the clinical and practical experiences are critical to your success as a Practical Nurse Student. This means students should be prepared to visit the Brooks campus each week through the program at the designated times.

Prepare to Learn:

  • Your active participation in COVID-19 prevention is important. Please visit the COVID page to learn about your responsibilities, how to access campus, and what to expect.
  • Details about tools and technology requirements, as well as additional course details, will be shared before the end of July.


About the Program

This program is offered at our Brooks Campus. Throughout the program, learning involves both classroom and laboratory activities, as well as instructor and preceptor supervised clinical experiences. Classes and laboratory experiences are provided at the Brooks Campus, however, you will be required to travel to other parts of the region for clinical and practical learning experiences. Graduates of the program are eligible for licensure through the College of Licensed Practical Nurses upon payment of a fee and successfully passing the national practical nurse examination (Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Exam or CPNRE).

LPNs are one of three categories of professional nurses in Alberta and continue to excel as front-line nurses involved in the assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation of nursing care. As a Practical Nurse, you will utilize the nursing process, which includes providing health assessments that consider physical, social, emotional, cultural and spiritual needs of clients. You will work with clients, families, and other members of the health care team to develop a plan of care that will best meet the client’s needs. You will also assist the client with activities of daily living, carry out prescribed procedures and treatments, and maintain a safe, comfortable environment for the client.

LPNs are professional nurses and work within their own scope of practice, standards of practice and code of ethics. You will study from the same body of nursing knowledge as registered nurses (RNs) and registered psychiatric nurses (RPNs) with a more focused approach in foundational knowledge, critical thinking, and clinical judgment to suit the LPNs role of today. As an LPN, you will have the knowledge, skill, judgment, and abilities to contribute in all phases of the continuum of care from prevention to acute treatment and management, to long term and palliative care. You may have independent, interdependent, and often overlapping roles on the health care team.

High School

  • 60% in ELA 30 -1 or 70% in ELA 30-2
  • 60% in Math 20-1 or 70% in Math 20-2 
  • 60% in Biology 30 or BV ANAT 1101 

Mature Student

  • 60% in ELA 30 -1 or 70% in ELA 30-2
  • 60% in Math 20-1 or 70% in Math 20-2 
  • 60% in Biology 30 or BV ANAT 1101 

Program Requirements

Before Starting the Program

1. Provide proof of current certification in the following:

  • Standard First Aid Certificate
  • Current CPR Certificate at a Health Care Provider Level

2. Once accepted students will receive a health questionnaire and immunizations checklist that must be completed. A chest x-ray may be required.

3. Students must present a current Police Information Check. Having a positive police check may not necessarily preclude the student from being in the program, but they will need to discuss this with the Practical Nursing Program Coordinator. Students are obligated to inform the Program Coordinator immediately of any change in the status of their criminal record.

After being admitted to the program students must provide annual renewal of CPR at a Health Care Provider level.

Some courses related to this program are found here. Please see the academic calendar or this year's program planning guide for an up-to-date set of courses related to Practical Nurse.

As a Licensed Practical Nurse, you may find employment with

  • Regional Health Authorities
  • Clinics (medical, dental and community)
  • Nursing Homes
  • Home Care Agencies
  • Large Corporations and Insurance Companies
  • Government Services (e.g. penitentiaries)

What is your education going to cost?

Our TUITION and FEES page provides a total cost estimate for your program including books and supplies and related expenses.

Looking for ways to help fund your education?

There are lots of options like student loans, scholarships, bursaries and emergency funding available.
Check out our FINANCIAL AID page for more information.

Many programs offered at Medicine Hat College qualify for transfer credits to other institutions. In some cases, you must transfer to another institution to complete your program and gain your credential.

The ACADEMIC CALENDAR has official information on transfer options for each program.
Please consult the calendar or meet with an academic advisor for more information.

At MHC, we care about students and want to help you succeed.

As a student, there may be times when you require support. Our SERVICES page provides you with links to a number of campus supports including academic success, counselling and care, health and wellness, and many other resources.

Have you always wanted to study abroad?

Enhance your education, share in cultural diversity and embrace new experiences. Visit the INTERNATIONAL MOBILITY PROGRAM section to find out more.

The Practical Nurse program is an intensive program involving full classroom/laboratory days and clinical days. Clinical experiences, in particular, may be scheduled at various hours, including evenings, nights, and weekends and it is expected that you will make accommodation for commitments outside the program to accommodate this scheduling.

Performance in Clinical and Practica

You are expected to observe program policies regarding punctuality, attendance, dress, response to supervision and feedback, and to provide safe, competent nursing care. If your performance is questionable in relation to the delivery of safe patient care and/ or to the maintenance of the program standards may be asked to leave the laboratory or clinical site at any time. Continued failure to uphold standards related to safe, professional performance will result in dismissal from the program.

In addition to tuition and textbook costs, students must plan for the inclusion of costs such as CPR, uniforms, white duty shoes, lab coat, lab kits, a watch with a sweep hand, practical nurse registration exams ($600 – subject to change), and travel/accommodation for clinical and practicum placements.