Students are preparing for membership in a profession that serves the public – a public that expects a high standard of professionalism. While participating in the classroom/laboratory/clinical portion of the program, students are expected to present themselves in a professional manner at all times by demonstrating integrity, respect, and compassion and are expected to be thoughtful and professional when interacting with faculty, staff, patients and their families, healthcare providers, preceptors, affiliated institutional staff, and other students.

It is expected that during the lecture and laboratory portion (as applicable) of their courses, students will: 

  • Arrive at class on time. Students who anticipate being late must notify their instructor at least 30 minutes prior to the start of class.
  • Not disrupt the lecture or laboratory instruction by engaging in private conversations.
  • Refrain from eating or drinking while in the laboratory.
  • Refrain from inappropriate behavior, such as verbal abuse, anger outbursts, etc.
  • Not engage in personal phone conversations or text messaging while participating in the didactic, laboratory, and/or clinical portions of their program. To the extent possible, electronic devices should be turned off or placed in silent mode.

It is expected that during the clinical portion of their courses, students will:

  • Uphold school policies and regulations related to academic and clinical performance.
  • Refrain from performing any technique or procedure for which they have not been adequately trained.
  • Refrain from any deliberate action or omission of care in the academic or clinical setting that creates an unnecessary risk of injury to the client, self, or others.
  • Provide care for the client in a timely, compassionate, and professional manner.
  • Communicate client care in a truthful, timely, and accurate manner.
  • Protect patient privacy, which is governed by HIPAA. Information about patients and/or their circumstances should not appear on social media sites.

If, while enrolled in a clinical course, a student's level of professionalism and/or performance presents potential harm to the welfare of clients, the faculty will determine, based on written and/or oral documentation, whether or not the student will be permitted to continue in the course. If a student’s performance presents immediate potential harm to either the student or his/her clients, the program faculty and/or preceptors have the responsibility to remove the student immediately from the clinical setting. A student who recognizes that she/he has made a clinical error is obligated to report the situation to their instructor immediately and to take necessary measures to ensure subsequent patient safety.

In addition, students enrolled in the Practical Nurse program may be suspended, or expelled, from clinical studies for reasons associated with academic misconduct. These reasons include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Failure to follow Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Guidelines by maintaining the confidentiality of patient information and records.
  • An act of dishonesty involving clinical work.
  • Falsification of credentials.
  • Inappropriate use of electronic devices such as, but not limited to photographing, recording, or transmission of patient information or photographs.

Professional demeanor is also required while students are on virtual sites, such as online social networking sites. All students are expected to abide by the College’s Social Media policy. 

As members of the nursing profession, it is imperative that nursing students recognize their responsibility to society and their patients and exhibit behavior representing high standards, polite etiquette, compassion, and respect for human dignity in both the classroom and clinical settings.

Professionalism will be a graded component of all core nursing courses via the completion of the Professional Development Achievement Tool (PDAT). This form is included as part of the course syllabus. Students must achieve 90% or higher on each PDAT form. Those scoring less than 90% on their first PDAT will receive remediation and a verbal warning; scoring less than 90% on two PDATs will result in a written warning; and scoring less than 90% on the third PDAT will result in automatic dismissal from the Program.

For more general conduct requirements applicable to all Berkeley College students, click here.