Philosophy of the Registered Nursing Program

The nursing faculty plans and implements a program of study organized around Roy’s Adaptation Model of nursing practice and derived from the following beliefs:


Every human being is a unique person with complex biologic, psychosocial, cultural, and spiritual components in constant mutual interaction with their environment. The continuum between health and illness can be seen as the ability to adapt to a changing environment. An adaptive response promotes integration of life processes to work as a whole to meet human needs. An ineffective adaptation response fails to contribute to this integration, resulting in unmet human goals.

Health and Illness

Nursing student checks equipment in Human Simulation Lab.Health is a process of becoming integrated and whole that reflects the positive interaction of the person and environment. Health is a dynamic state that continually changes as an individual and family interacts with their internal and external environments. Health in itself is not negative or positive, but a reflection of the individual's/family's physical, emotional, intellectual, social, developmental, and spiritual well being. Illness is a state of imbalance in human environmental integration. The most positive state of health is the maximum level of adaptation at any given time and place. Many variables affect the level of health, including genetics, age, life-style, perception of health and illness, health promotion activities, values, beliefs, and culture.


Based on the above definitions of health and illness, the nurse's role is one of identifying adaptive and ineffective responses to illness, and helping to expand adaptive abilities by enhancing human and environmental transformation. We believe that optimum health is a right for all people and not a privilege. This nation's most valuable resource is the health of its people. We advocate equal access to health care, and encourage individuals/families to make autonomous and informed health care decisions.

Nurses have a responsibility to be knowledgeable about theories, principles, and applications of biological and social sciences. The nurse uses this knowledge to promote the health of individuals/families/groups, or when necessary, to dignify death and ease the dying process. Nursing is practiced through the framework of the nursing process. The nurse uses the following skills and resources in nursing practice, which are identified as program themes: critical thinking, communication, management, teaching, professionalism, and community. Nurses must interact with health professionals in a collaborative effort to provide effective health care. Patient advocacy is central to the nursing role. Nurses are obligated to behave in a professional, ethical manner. The curriculum threads include: pain management, pharmacology, nutrition, human maturation, cultural diversity, and caring.

We believe human beings are integral with their physical and social environments, existing in a vast network of interdependent relationships within our Earth community. The health of individuals is directly related to the health of the various groups and communities upon which they depend and to which they belong. The future well-being of humankind in environmental interactions approaches as a defining moment for nursing. The role of the nurse is to promote health in individual, community, and environmental contexts, since these contexts must be addressed together in creating a healthy future.

Associate's Degree Nursing Practice

The purpose of the Registered Nursing Program at Ohlone College is to prepare beginning practitioners who will function in the common domain of registered nurse practice after licensure. Graduates are prepared to care for a group of clients within a variety of structured health care settings, to collaborate with other health professionals, and to carry out independent, dependent, and interdependent nursing measures. Graduates are also prepared to continue learning through experience and education. In addition, the graduate is expected to participate in the development of the profession through engagement in the mentoring role and through affiliation with professional organizations. The faculty supports education and practice in nursing at its multiple levels. The faculty recognizes that the scope of practice for all levels of nursing is influenced by a variety of factors, both within and external to the nursing profession.

Nursing Education

Nursing education is the process by which students are socialized into the profession of nursing. We believe the educational experience is stimulating and desirable, and that it supports growth in individuals. We believe nursing education is obligated to base curriculum decisions on realistic conceptions of nursing roles and practice as a multi-level occupation. At the Associate's Degree level, the curriculum must provide students with skills and knowledge utilized in the common domain of nursing practice and when possible derived from evidence based research. Prior learning achieved by some students is acknowledged through formal procedures. The Nursing Faculty encourages life-long learning in nursing and recognizes that the Associate's Degree can be an end point for formal nursing education or can be a bridge for advanced practice.

Teaching and Learning

Nursing student checks IV in Human Simulation Lab.Learning is the process by which behavior is changed as the individual acquires, retains, and applies knowledge, attitudes, skills, or modes of thought. The ultimate responsibility for learning rests with the learner. A person learns when a need or problem is encountered. This need motivates the search for information as an individual progresses toward a goal or problem solution. A by-product is the reinforcement of desire for further learning and an increased belief in one's ability to continue to be successful in learning situations.

Human beings have a natural potential for learning. This desire for expansion of knowledge and experience can be achieved through and built upon the student's previous experience, actively involving the learner in the process, and thereby moving from the familiar to the unfamiliar. Significant learning takes place when the subject matter is perceived by the adult learner as having meaning for one's own purpose. Learning is acquired through the repetition and reinforcement of successful behaviors, which contributes to desired behavior patterns. A variety of opportunities for application of knowledge encourage the learner to develop and apply critical thinking skills

Teaching is the facilitation of learning and requires valuing the student as a person and understanding the student's learning needs. Learning is facilitated by timely feedback which is understandable to the learner. Lack of feedback prevents progress and leads to frustration. Essential to the student's ability to incorporate constructive feedback (i.e., to make necessary changes in behavior) is a clearly understood plan collaboratively developed by learner and teacher to meet the learner's individual learning needs. The plan includes objectives, timelines, and evaluation.

1978. Revised 1983, 1985, 1988, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2006, 2008.