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Course Outlines

NSHA 7201

High Acuity Specialty Nursing Theory 2

School School of Health Sciences
Program High Acuity Nursing Specialty
Course Credits 6
Minimum Passing Grade 75%
Start Date September 07, 2021
End Date March 25, 2022
Total Hours 90
Total Weeks 24
Hours/Weeks 3.75
Delivery Type Other
CRN 34459

Acknowledgement of Territories

The British Columbia Institute of Technology acknowledges that our campuses are located on the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish Nations of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), and xwməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam).

Instructor Details

Name Jean Dehaan
E-mail Instructor to provide
Location TBD
Office Hours Instructor to provide

Course Description

High Acuity Nursing Theory 2 is the third theory course in the High Acuity Specialty Nursing Certificate. In this course, learners will build on the theoretical concepts explored in NSHA 7100, High Acuity Nursing Theory 1 and NSCC 7150, Dysrhythmia Interpretation and Management. High Acuity Nursing Theory 2 focuses on caring for patients who are experiencing various complex acute illnesses. NSHA 7201 provides opportunities for the learner to develop an advanced understanding of patients’ experiences of various acute illnesses. The concept of this acute illness also impacting the chronic illness patients may also be suffering from is also introduced in this section. The presence of co-morbidities can create an unpredictable course for the acute illness. This course provides opportunities for the learner to use the high acuity nursing theory to identify the patient’s priority problems and to provide care for complex and acutely ill patient. The skill of being able to interpret the subtle changes in the patient’s condition is what makes the role of the high acuity nurse caring for the acutely ill patient is very important. The theory covered in this course offers the learner the chance to recognize that the identification of priority patient problems and timely interventions can restore imbalances in oxygen supply and demand in order to provide optimum end-organ perfusion.

Course Learning Outcomes/Competencies

As licensed health care practitioners, all learners will adhere to the professional standards of practice throughout the course. NSHA 7201 will provide learners the opportunity to use the processes of critical thinking, systematic inquiry, communication, collaboration, leadership and professionalism. Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the pathophysiology of acute coronary syndrome, heart failure, hemodynamic instability, acute diabetic complications, acute kidney injury, traumatic brain injury, cerebral vascular accident and sepsis.
  • Formulate the interrelationships between all determinants of oxygen supply and demand within increasing complex patient situations.
  • Explain how comprehensive assessment findings and pathophysiology of previously mentioned acute illness states inform the oxygen supply and demand balance for high acuity patients.
  • Analyze patient data, form conclusions and prioritize nursing care to optimize oxygen supply and demand for high acuity patients.
  • Apply invasive monitoring and hemodynamic assessment theory to form conclusions about the determinants of cardiac output.
  • Integrate relevant nursing literature to inform personal nursing practice.
  • Support a spirit of inquiry by reflecting on personal knowledge, theory and evidenced-based research related to high acuity nursing practice.

Learning Resources

Learning Hub NSHA 7201 course

Evaluation Criteria

Criteria % Comments
Assignment 1 Part A 10 In order to progress to NSHA 7300, the student must achieve 75% on each evaluation component.
Assignment 2 10
Exam 1 30
Assignment 1 Part B 10
Assignment 3 10
Exam 2 30

Other information

Late Assignments

The penalty for late assignments is 5% per day past the due date. Extensions may be granted but must be requested AND confirmed at least 72 hours in advance of the assignment due date. If an extension is granted and the assignment is still late, the penalty is 10% for the first day and 5% for each subsequent day. All extensions and penalties will be granted or enforced at the discretion of the instructor and program head.

Note on Audio/Video Recording

As part of evaluation, learning and debriefing, you may be recorded, both audio and video, during simulation lab experiences. All recordings are stored at BCIT, not shared to third parties and deleted upon course completion.

Statement for prior learning assessment

Prior Learning and Assessment Recognition is a way for students with applicable work and academic experience to apply that knowledge toward earning credits without taking additional classes. If you believe that you have applicable prior work and academic experience, please contact the program directly:

Jean Dehaan
Program Head
Toll-free: 800-663-6542 x 8911

For more information on BCIT's PLAR process, please visit:

Course Schedule and Assignments

This course is delivered over two consecutive 12-week terms. There is a separate course schedule for each term with two assignments and one exam. Note that the total percentage of the evaluatives in each of the terms is 50. The marks are combined from both terms for the total mark for the course. Information for all assignments and exams are provided at the beginning of each term. Please refer to the overview module for each part of the course for complete details. The online modules will be available for viewing at the start of the term.

BCIT Policy

Any student who needs special assistance in the event of a medical emergency or building evacuation (either because of a disability or for any other reason) should promptly inform their course instructor(s) and Accessibility Services of their personal circumstances.

Human Rights, Harassment and Discrimination:
The BCIT community is made up of individuals from every ability, background, experience and identity, each contributing uniquely to the richness and diversity of the BCIT community as a whole. In recognition of this, and the intrinsic value of our diversity, BCIT seeks to foster a climate of collaboration, understanding and mutual respect between all members of the community and ensure an inclusive accessible working and learning environment where everyone can succeed.

Respect, Diversity, and Inclusion is a supportive resource for both students and employees of BCIT, to foster a respectful learning and working environment. Any student who feels that they are experiencing discrimination or harassment (personal or human rights-related) can confidentially access this resource for advice and support. Please see Policy 7507 – Harassment and Discrimination and accompanying procedure.

Students should make themselves aware of additional Education, Administration, Safety and other BCIT policies listed at

Guidelines for School of Health Sciences

No school specific policies, please refer to main BCIT Policy.


I verify that the content of this course outline is current.
Kristie Walters, Instructor on behalf of Jean Dehaan, Program Head
June 03, 2021

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed.
Jean Dehaan, Program Head
July 09, 2021

I verify that this course outline has been reviewed and complies with BCIT policy.
Kathy Kennedy, Associate Dean
July 10, 2021

Note: Should changes be required to the content of this course outline, students will be given reasonable notice.