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    The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  Oct 03, 2023
2022-2023 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Summer Addendum 
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2022-2023 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Summer Addendum [Archived Catalog]

Certificate in Vocational Nursing

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Program Overview

The Certificate in Vocational Nursing program at The Chicago School is a four-term program that prepares the graduate with the skills and information necessary to pass the NCLEX-PN and practice as a competent vocational nurse. Students will learn proper patient care, medical terminology, medication administration, body systems, body growth and development, patient care assessment, and nursing procedures.  Upon attaining their Vocational Nursing License, students can obtain employment in hospitals, nursing homes, doctors’ offices, home health agencies, and correctional facilities. The VN program is 51 weeks full time and 68 weeks part time. 

Program Foundation and Delivery 

Educational foundations in the Vocational Nursing (VN) program are based upon the Differentiated Essential Competencies of Graduates of Texas Nursing Programs (DECs).  Please use the following link to the Texas Board of Nursing’s website to access additional information regarding DECs:  Instruction in The Chicago School’s programs may be delivered through residential, distance education, or a combination of both.

Philosophy of Nursing

The programs believe that nursing is a dynamic process in which the provider and the client (individual, family, or community) work together to achieve health promotion, disease prevention, and disease management for the client across the lifespan. Nursing has a holistic view of the client based on physiologic, psychosocial, and spiritual principles.

Nurses use clinical judgment, communication, and nursing skills to assist a diverse population of clients in meeting their needs and achieving optimal health. The nurse practices within an ethical and legal framework and embraces evidence-based practice.

The VN faculty believe that nursing is a dynamic profession that encompasses a global view of health for the individual from prevention through tertiary care within their cultural and spiritual beliefs.

Philosophy of Healthcare Education

The VN program is committed to providing excellent education to a diverse student population. Based on the belief that life-long learning is essential to continued competence, the programs strive to empower students to function independently and utilize critical thinking. Faculty members serve as facilitators and role models and expect students to function as adult learners.

The faculty of the VN program embrace current and future technology as a tool to be used appropriately for the enhanced learning experience of the individual student.

Program Philosophy

The conceptual framework for the vocational nursing program is based on the goal of enabling the individual student to learn and use skills essential to the achievement of a maximum level of health and functioning for each client. The core curriculum describes and teaches the basic biological, psychological, and sociological needs of man and progresses to the higher needs of dignity and well-being desired by all individuals.  Holistic nursing practice combines art, skill, and science in utilizing the nursing process to meet the needs of each individual.  A systematic approach involves the use of assessment skills, planning care, nursing interventions, and the evaluation of nursing interventions. The result for the individual is health and the ability to function at the highest level possible.

Program Mission

The mission of the Certificate in Vocational Nursing (VN) program at The Chicago School is to advance the art and science of nursing through academic excellence by integrating the knowledge, skills, values, and attitudes essential for entry-level and practicing nurses.

Program Learning Outcomes

The Certificate in Vocational Nursing Program focuses on the following four Essential Competencies of the nurse as described by the Texas Board of Nursing: Provider of Patient-Centered Care, Patient Safety Advocate, Member of the Health Care Team, and Member of the Profession. Holistic nursing practice combines art, skill, and science in utilizing the nursing process to meet the needs of each individual. A systematic approach involves the use of assessment skills, planning care, nursing interventions, and the evaluation of nursing interventions. The curriculum prepares students to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). Upon completion of the program, the graduate will:

Professional Practice

  • Implement safe nursing skills for common patient needs in a variety of settings.

  • Predict, plan, and implement comprehensive care plans utilizing critical thinking skills to care for patients as human beings with common requirements.

  • Discuss therapeutic relationships through both verbal and nonverbal communication with clients, their significant others, and the multidisciplinary healthcare team.

Professional Behavior

  • Practice within the designated scope of practice.

  • Proceed with nursing care while maintaining accountability and professionalism within the legal and ethical standards of the nursing program.

  • Meet eligibility requirements of the state licensing examination.


  • Develop an interest in pursuit and development of knowledge regarding the discipline of nursing.


For information on where The Chicago School meets, does not meet, or has not determined if the program meets licensure eligibility requirements for the  state in which you wish to be licensed, please visit:

Admission Requirements

The Chicago School is not currently enrolling new students in this program.

For information on where The Chicago School is currently authorized, licensed, registered, exempt or not subject to approval, please visit

The Certificate in Vocational Nursing admits, as regular students, applicants having a valid high school diploma, official General Educational Development (GED), or recognized equivalent.

All applicants must be at least 17 years of age. In accordance with Texas laws, if applicant is under 18, a parent or legal guardian signature is required prior to enrollment

  • Standardized Test Requirements for Admission

    • An American College Test (ACT) score within the last five years with a composite score of 19 or above or

    • A Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) score within the last five years with a composite score of 1350 or above if taken before 2016 or a composite score of 990 or above if taken since 2016 or

  • Passing of the Nursing School Admissions Test.

    • Applicants who fail one or more sections on their first attempt must wait 4 weeks before retaking the failed section or sections

    • Applicants who fail one or more sections on their second attempt must wait 12 months before retaking the failed section or sections

  • Written essay to be scored by Dean of Nursing or designee.

  • All applicants must pass a drug screen (Texas Board of Nursing 213.29 Criteria and Procedure Regarding Intemperate Use and Lack of Fitness in Eligibility and Disciplinary Matters).

  • An applicant’s background check must meet the Texas Board of Nursing 213.28 criteria regarding Licensure of Person with Criminal Offenses. Minor criminal offenses (Class C misdemeanor(s)) will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. The decision of the Dean of Nursing is final.

  • All applicants must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident of the U.S.

All applicants are required to submit a completed application, application fee ($100), and official transcripts of any programmatically required diploma, degree, or credential. Official transcripts of schools listed in the application are required with a conferral date prior to the term of entry.

The Dean of Nursing must give final acceptance of each student to any program. The Chicago School reserves the right to decline any high school diploma, transcript, or equivalency documentation it deems as unacceptable.


Student to Faculty Ratio

The Certificate in Vocational Nursing Program will maintain a proper ratio between faculty and students to allow adequate attention to each student in all class settings. The student to faculty ratio generally will not exceed these guidelines:

Type of Course


Minimum to Start

Didactic Courses - ground campuses



Didactic Courses - online campus



Laboratory Courses



Clinical Rotations - in a clinical setting, skill or simulation lab

where hands-on training occurs




Minimum to Start provision: The Chicago School reserves the right to cancel any course in which the census drops below the minimum to start up to the fourth class session. Students will be notified immediately and given the opportunity to change classes where possible. Schedule changes are processed in the Office of the Registrar. In the event of a course cancellation due to low enrollment, a student will not be charged for the course and the course will be removed from the student’s education record.

The following policies are located under Academic Policies and Procedures  : Academic Calendar, Admissions Requirements, Attendance, Satisfactory Academic Progress, Service Learning, and Transfer and Nontraditional Credit Hours.

Graduation Requirements

To meet the graduation requirements, a student must pass each course in their program of study with a grade of C or better maintain the minimum required CGPA of 2.0 or higher, and complete all program requirements within a period of time which does not exceed 1.5 times the program length. A VN student must pass the final exam in SBER 4020   State Board Exam Review to be eligible for graduation. If unsuccessful in passing the final exam, the student must repeat the entire course.

A student enrolled in their final term is solely responsible for all licensing and NCLEX testing fees.

The Curriculum

Total Required Core: 51 credit hours


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