Nursing Essentials

BSN Essential Professional Abilities and Behaviors

The RN to BSN Nursing Essentials amplify requirements found in the UW Bothell Student Conduct Code. Students are expected to meet the nursing essentials outlined below as part of meeting their degree completion requirements. Performance and academic progress is reviewed by faculty at the end of each quarter.

When the Nursing Essentials Are Not Met

Faculty are committed to your professional growth. If appropriate, the faculty and student can meet to review the behavior of concern thus coming to a resolution without  further action. However, when Students who do not meet the Essential Professional Abilities and Behaviors may expect the following to occur:

  • Faculty notification of concern: Faculty will notify the student directly and alert Academic Advising Services. 
  • Problematic behavior: This will be documented by faculty and placed in the student's educational file.
  • Problematic behavior may result in an issued warning card and contract: If a pattern of problematic behavior or a single serious lapse of the essential abilities and behaviors occurs a Warning Card will be issued with a contract to the student by the faculty indicating that the student's continuation in the program is in jeopardy. If this occurs, students can expect the following process:

A contract will be composed: The student's instructor and an advisor, in consultation with the School of Nursing and Health Studies Dean, will prepare an individual student contract to accompany the Warning Card identifying what needs to be demonstrated in order to meet the essential behaviors and thus remain in the program.

The School of Nursing and Health Studies faculty reviews for approval of the contract The individual student contract is reviewed and approved by the School of Nursing and Health Studies Faculty. The documentation of lapses in the essential professional abilities and behaviors must accompany the contract.

The student is apprised of warning card and given the contract for review: The School's Dean, instructor, and/or appropriate academic advisor will meet with the student to present the Warning Card and individual student contract. The student has the opportunity to review and respond. The student signs the Warning Card and it is placed in the student's educational file.  

The contract is monitored quarterly by School of Nursing and Health Studies Faculty: If the contract is not upheld by the student, the student will be dismissed from the program.

Nursing Essentials Abilities and Professional Behaviors

Motor and sensory skills

Students need to have sufficient motor function and sensory skills in order to be able to execute movements and make observations required in the domain of nursing care/activity in the program of study.


The degree candidate must communicate effectively and sensitively with other students, faculty, staff, patients, family, and other professionals:

  • He or she must express his or her ideas and feelings clearly and demonstrate a willingness and ability to give and receive feedback. 
  • A degree candidate must be able to: convey or exchange information at a level allowing development of a health history; identify problems presented; explain alternative solutions; and give directions during treatment and post-treatment.
  • The candidate must be able to communicate effectively in oral and written forms. 
  • The candidate must be able to process and communicate information on the patient's status with accuracy in a timely manner to members of the healthcare team. The appropriate communication may also rely on the candidate's ability to make a correct judgment in seeking supervision and consultation in a timely manner.

Communication Note: Students are responsible and expected to stay in communication with program faculty, staff and the University, and to check their university email on a regular basis to which all official communication is sent. Legal name changes are processed through the Office of the Registrar.

Professional Conduct
  • Students must possess the ability to reason morally and practice nursing according to the Professional Code of Ethics. 
  • Students must be willing to abide by professional standards of practice as well as regulations for professional licensure.  
  • Students must demonstrate the attributes of compassion, altruism, integrity, honesty, responsibility, and tolerance.
  • Students must possess the emotional health required for the adequate utilization of intellectual abilities, the exercise of sound judgment, and the timely completion of responsibilities in their programs of study. 
  • Further, students must be able to maintain mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients, students, faculty, staff, and other professionals under diverse circumstances including highly stressful situations. 
  • Students must have the emotional stability to function effectively under stress and adapt to environments that may change rapidly without warning and/or in unpredictable ways. 
  • Students must be able to experience empathy for the situations and circumstances of others and appropriately communicate that empathy.
  • Students must acknowledge that values, attitudes, beliefs, emotions, and experiences affect their perceptions and relationships with others. 
  • Students must be able and willing to examine and change behaviors when they interfere with productive individual or team relationships. 
  • Students must demonstrate the effective and harmonious relationships with the diverse academic and professional environments relevant to their chosen programs of study.
  • Students must be able to reason, analyze, integrate, synthesize, and evaluate in the context of the undergraduate program of study. 
  • He or she must be able to evaluate and apply information and engage in critical thinking in the classroom and clinical setting.
Reasonable Accommodation for Disabilities
  • Students must be able to perform all the essential functions of the program with or without accommodation. A student who discloses a disability and requests accommodation will be referred to Disability Support Services.  Alternatively the student may approach Disability Support Services directly to inquire about accommodations for a disability.  The student may be asked by Disability Support Services to provide documentation of the disability for the purposes of determining appropriate accommodations. The University will provide reasonable accommodations, but is not required to make modifications that would substantially alter the nature or requirements of the program. If you have questions regarding reasonable accommodation, contact Disability Support Services.

Students Resources

Counseling Center

Personal or academic issues may impede a student's progress. Short-term personal counseling is offered in a supportive and confidential environment. Academic skills enhancement, student support groups, and couples counseling are also available.  For more information or to make an appointment contact the Counseling Center.


The mission of the Office of the Ombudsman is to, “provide high quality, client-focused services for preventing, managing, and resolving conflict at this University. Through active participation in the problem-solving process, clients develop the ability to prevent, manage, and resolve future conflicts.”

The Office of the Ombudsman provides focused services for preventing, managing, and resolving conflicts among students, staff, and faculty of this university.  Through active participation in the mediation process, students, faculty and staff can develop competencies for preventing, managing, and resolving future conflicts.

Approved by Attorney General 10/14/02
Approved by UWB Nursing 11/6/02