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Curriculum: MN - Thesis Stream

Curriculum: MN Thesis Stream

Courses in the Master of Nursing Thesis Stream program address advanced nursing theory, research, and practice. A Thesis provides an opportunity for students to delve deeply into their research interests with one-on-one supervision and support from a Faculty Advisor.

It’s a rich, challenging education for students pursuing careers in advanced nursing research and evidence-based practice.

Students in the Master of Nursing Thesis Stream program must write an independent scholarly Thesis:

In this course students will develop a research proposal and complete a research project under the guidance of a thesis supervisor and committee members. The thesis will entail research in a topic area chosen in consultation with the student's thesis supervisor and committee members.

Students take 5 required core courses:

Learners will have the opportunity to explore and critique a variety of quantitative research methods utilized in the development of nursing science. They will study the different research designs, sampling strategies, data collection methods and statistical analyzes utilized when undertaking quantitative research studies. They will also discuss and critique research arising from a variety of practice settings that are conducive to quantitative methodologies. Frameworks and approaches to research utilization and evidence based practice will be discussed and students will explore strategies for translating results of quantitative research studies into practice settings.

This course will provide learners with the opportunity to explore and critique a variety of qualitative research methods and approaches. Learners will explore how the philosophical underpinnings of various research approaches inform the construction of research questions, selection of methods, and strategies for data analysis. Examples of qualitative research conducted in a variety of practice settings will be discussed and critiqued. Learners will learn how qualitative and quantitative research methods can be used as either separate or complementary approaches in research design.

The learners will explore the evolution of nursing theory and its accompanying philosophical foundations to understand the inter-relationship between theory, practice and research. In addition, they will examine the development and nature of nursing's scientific body of knowledge and the art of nursing. Learners will be able to critically analyze a variety of nursing theories related to their use for nursing practice and research. Through the process of theory analysis and evaluation they will examine selected nursing conceptual models/theories from the totality and simultaneity paradigms and examine the value of theoretical pluralism.

Students will analyze theoretical perspectives related to the advancement of professional nursing practice from a variety of philosophical and critical standpoints.

Using case studies and examples from their practica, students will examine and synthesize linkages between theory, research, advanced practice, and their field of study. Students will explore and critique the multiple domains of professional nursing at an advanced level, including clinical practice, leadership, policy, education, and research.

Students will focus on the synthesis and application of knowledge at an advanced level within their chosen field of study. They will be expected to successfully apply knowledge gained from practice, theory and research into their advanced role during their practicum experience. Students will promote change and demonstrate innovation by extending the boundaries of nursing practice (e.g. contribute to knowledge development and the advancement of the profession).

Students also complete 1 required course in their chosen Field of Study:

Field I Courses: Leadership in Health Policy and Education

This course will provide Learners with the opportunity to examine the development of health policy in Canada. Public policy analysis will be introduced in a way that provides an overview of techniques and issues that are applicable to an understanding of how health care policy evolves. Learners will use these techniques to critically analyze current issues and trends in Canada's health care system as well as other selected countries. The action of key interest groups who influence public policies which ultimately shape health priorities and goals will be examined with a particular focus on the role of the nursing profession, other professions and consumers.

Learners will examine the role of the advanced practice nurse in influencing the development and advancement of education in diverse professional practice environments. Learners will develop advanced skills in the creation of a supportive learning/teaching environment respectful of the diversity of learners. Learners will apply relevant theories and research to critique various approaches used in health education and health promotion. Learners will examine strategies that facilitate the professional advancement of the educator in providing educational leadership within a variety of practice settings including, but not limited to, the community, hospitals and universities.

This course provides students with an understanding of a range of pertinent issues related to interprofessional working and learning across a variety of health care settings. The course will explore a number of theories and factors (e.g. professionalism, gender, ethnicity) related to interprofessional education and practice. The course also examines professional roles, responsibilities and scopes of practice as well as salient legal and ethical issues related to working together in a collaborative manner.

Field II Courses: Health and Illness of Individuals and Communities

Learners will examine broad conceptualizations of health and illness to provide a foundation for critical analysis of specific conceptual models (such as health beliefs, loss, quality of life, and recovery) relevant to the experience of individuals and families across a variety of illness groups. This will enable learners to develop an advanced understanding of current theoretical perspectives and research related to biopsychosocial and cultural determinants of health and illness. Learners will also examine models of psychosocial intervention applicable to their professional practice that support health for individuals and families.

Drawing upon critical theory, the social determinants of health, and social justice frameworks, learners will engage in an analysis of major primary health care, health promotion, and population health initiatives locally, nationally, and globally. Links to social, cultural, environmental, political, and economic contexts that impact on health, equity, and health disparities will be analyzed critically. Evidence-based research and ethical considerations central to community health and advanced community health nursing practice will be examined. Emphasis throughout will be placed on upstream, participatory, and collaborative approaches to the development of healthy public policy locally and globally.

Using critical social theory as a framework, learners will explore how urban health is impacted by factors related to diversity and globalization. Learners will critically examine the intersections of the broad social determinants of health as influencing the experiences of individuals, families, and communities within urban environments. Learners will investigate the impact of the health care system design and the various roles of health professionals on current urban health issues. Learners will identify and critique a range of frameworks and strategies that can be utilized by advanced practice nurses in the community to engage individuals, families, and population groups in promoting urban health.

All courses run 36 hours per semester except the Practicum in Professional Nursing Advancement, which is 16 hours per week for 12 weeks, for a total of 192 hours.

Most courses are delivered face-to-face in on-site seminars, but format may vary by course and include on-line, in-class, or modular formats.