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Completing Additional Education

“I must complete additional education to meet the education requirement. What happens now?”

Before applicants can register with the College, they must show they have completed one of the following:

  • an approved or equivalent nursing program designed to prepare them for the type of nursing (RN, RPN or NP) they want to practise in Ontario; or
  • some combination of nursing education and nursing practice experience, if any, that shows the applicant possesses nursing knowledge, skill and judgment equivalent to that of a current graduate from an approved nursing program.

The College reviews all relevant information provided in your application, including:

  • your original nursing program
  • any other nursing education you’ve completed
  • information about any nursing experience you can provide, which may include the results of any additional evaluations you have been asked to complete. 

After this review, if the College finds that you have not yet met the education requirement, we will ask you to complete additional nursing education to address identified competency gaps.

Addressing gaps in education
If we find gaps in your nursing knowledge, skill and judgment, we will send you a letter outlining the specific competency gaps that need to be addressed. You will need to complete additional education to address those gaps and meet the nursing education requirement.

Process for meeting the education requirement:

  1. Select an approved nursing school from the list of approved Ontario programs that provides education at the level needed for the type of nurse (RN, RPN or NP) you are applying to register as in Ontario. Or, you can visit the website of one of the nursing regulatory bodies in another Canadian jurisdiction and select a nursing program from an approved or accredited school in that jurisdiction that can provide the necessary education to address competency gaps at the required level.
    Note: the level of education required for each nursing category differs; for example, RN applicants are required to complete additional education that is equivalent to the education provided to a current graduate of a Canadian university baccalaureate degree nursing program while RPN applicants are required to complete additional education equivalent to the education provided to a current graduate of an Ontario college practical nursing diploma program.

  2. Contact the school for information about its admission requirements.
  3. Show the documents you received from the College, including the Competency Assessment Form and Criteria for Additional Education and Training, to the school.
  4. Complete the additional education you need to address gaps and meet the nursing requirement.
  5. Ask the school to send an official transcript (in a sealed envelope, with the school’s official seal or stamp) to the College.

When we receive the transcript, it will be reviewed to confirm that the education you completed addresses the identified competency gaps and provided you with equivalent nursing knowledge, skill and judgment. (We may ask for more information, such as official copies of course descriptions or outlines, to help make our decision.)

If we find your additional education does not address all the competency gaps and provide you with equivalent nursing knowledge, skill and judgment, you will be asked to complete further education or training.

Remember:

  • The College will not approve your selections in advance. It is your responsibility to select your education and/or training courses. Make sure your course selections follow the Criteria for Additional Education and Training, as described in the letter sent to you.
  • Choose a Canadian school that provides nursing education at the required level as noted in #1 above.
  • Look online and review course outlines and descriptions or syllabi information to check that the course content addresses your identified competency gaps.
  • Online or distance education courses can be used to address some competency gaps. Clinical related competencies involving the demonstration of nursing, knowledge skill and judgment addressing direct patient care or interaction with clients, healthcare teams or other areas will require completion of clinical practicums or consolidations. Consider schools inside and outside Ontario that offer course options. Check with the province or territory’s nursing regulatory body to confirm that the school you’re considering is approved or accredited in that jurisdiction.

Other questions

What should I do if I don’t want to continue with my application?
Select “Withdraw my application” on the Withdrawal Form enclosed with the letter you receive from us. We will confirm in writing that your application has been closed when we receive your Withdrawal Form.

I am an RN applicant who has received a letter outlining competency gaps. Can I complete my additional education at an Ontario community college that offers nursing courses?
The Criteria for Additional Education and/or Training identifies that additional nursing education for RN applicants must be completed at an approved or accredited Canadian university. Ask the school whether the nursing program or courses offered by the college is provided through a collaborative university/college nursing program or with university oversight. If not, your additional education may not provide you with the required breadth and depth of nursing knowledge, skill and judgment at a level equivalent to that of a current graduate of an approved university baccalaureate degree nursing program. 

If you still want to take your nursing education through the college, then the school must be able to demonstrate that the additional nursing education addresses the required competency gaps at the required level.  The school should confirm that its education program would be accepted by a university as providing nursing knowledge, skill and judgment equivalent to that of a Canadian university baccalaureate nursing degree graduate. This information would be reviewed by the College after you complete the additional nursing education and the required information is submitted by the school (i.e., transcript, course descriptions, and letter validating that the education was provided at the required level).

If we find your additional education does not address all the competency gaps and provide you with equivalent nursing knowledge, skill and judgment, you will be asked to complete further education or training.

Resources

Competency-Based Courses for Internationally-Educated Nurses (IENs)

Page last reviewed January 22, 2017