Functional Abilities Policy

A. Nurses must possess the knowledge, skills, and functional abilities to provide safe and effective client care. The functional abilities for safe nursing practice include: fine and gross motor coordination; physical endurance and strength; mobility; intact senses; reading and arithmetic competence; emotional stability; critical and analytical thinking; and interpersonal/communication skills.

B. Some limitations in ability can be accommodated with special devices or special circumstances; others cannot. The ultimate determination regarding the reasonableness of accommodations will be based upon the preservation of client safety and the resources of the college department. This policy covers pre-existing conditions as well as conditions that may arise subsequent to acceptance to the major. Temporary or newly diagnosed interruptions in abilities (e.g., casted arm) will require individual evaluation. Students will be informed of the Functional Abilities Policy during orientation to the Nursing Department: "Functional Ability Categories and Representative Activities/Attributes."

C. Procedures

  1. Nursing faculty advisors will initiate discussion of needed functional abilities with advisees at an early advising session.
  2. The student will identify his/her capacity to meet the functional abilities.
  3. If limitations in functional abilities are identified, the student is responsible for consulting with a qualified practitioner for further evaluation.
  4. If a limitation is verified by the practitioner, the student must present suggested accommodations in writing to Academic Advising for departmental consideration.
  5. The faculty, in consultation with Academic Advising, will determine which accommodations are reasonable, available, and preserve client safety.
  6. Students may place a copy of their accommodation recommendation in their departmental file for faculty review. Such action is not required.

Approved by Faculty Organization, March 28, 2011.