Are you a Personal Support Worker (PSW) and looking to become a Nurse?
If you answered yes…
you have come to the right place.
We have made a list of all the PSW to RPN briding programs in Ontario.
You will find all the details you need to upgrade from a PSW to a practical nurse.
There are many benefits of advancing your clinical practice.
Job opportunities for RPNs are becoming especially prevalent as the geriatric population in Ontario is growing, thus demonstrating a need for qualified nursing care in:
- acute care settings,
- community health agencies, and
- long-term care facilities.
The Government of Ontario is also actively supporting and funding the training and recruitment of 27,000 Registered Nurses (RNs), Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs), and PSWs.
As a Registered Practical Nurse, you will also be entitled to job benefits such as higher pay and greater job satisfaction.
Upon enrolling in a Practical Nursing (PN) program, those with a PSW certificate are usually given a credit.
There are many colleges that offer Personal Support Worker to Practical Nursing bridging programs.
In this article you’ll learn:
- Which colleges offer this program?
- The cost
- Intake, and
- Direct links to college websites.
Subsequently, this article will equip you with valuable information that you will need in order to make an informed decision regarding enrolling in a bridge program.
Here is a glimpse of all the Community Colleges that offer PSW to Practical Nursing bridging programs
|Mohawk College||Full-time |
|Fleming College||Part-time||At your own pace||Peterborough|
|George Brown||Full-time||1 Semester||Toronto|
|Algonquin College||Program |
|Conestoga College||Part-time||Within 2 Years||Kitchener|
|Centennial College||Part-time||4 Courses||Varies|
|Sheridan College||Part-time||4 Courses||Online|
What is a PSW to Practical Nursing Bridging Program?
A bridge program is defined as a formal partnership between two post-secondary education providers.
It provides students with advanced standing within a program at a particular educational institution through the recognition of their academic history in a similar discipline.
Bridge courses can be classified into three distinct types:
- multilateral, and
Bilateral and multilateral agreements are between two or more similar institutions and are typically the type that post-secondary schools offer with respect to PSW to RPN bridge programs.
Where are the Programs Offered?
Many institutions in Ontario offer continuing education and bridging programs for Personal Support Worker to enable them to become Registered Practical Nurses.
Following is a list of colleges that offer this bridging program in Ontario, Canada.
Mohawk College offers a Practical Nursing (PSW to PN bridging stream) program.
This program is specifically designed for those who have completed a certified PSW course in order to advance into the second semester of the Practical Nursing program.
The program emphasizes collaborative learning alongside clinical training, theory and lab work.
Following the completion of the Practical Nursing diploma program, graduates are eligible to take the Canadian Registered Practical Nurse Examination (CRPNE), administered by the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO).
To apply for this Mohawk PSW to PN bridging program, you will need to:
- Submit proof of completion of Grade 12 English C or U,
- Grade 11 or 12 Mathematics C, M or U (M or U recommended),
- Grade 11 or 12 Sciences, and
- Evidence of completion of a Personal Support Worker Certificate program from an accredited Ontario college since 2006.
Once you meet the above requirements, you will also be asked to take the Health Occupation Aptitude Examination (HOAE) test with the Mohawk Pre-Admission Testing Centre for a $50 fee.
Please note that this is a very competitive program and you must apply as early as possible.
The estimated cost for the first year of the Practical Nurse program is $6,152.10.
Mohawk also offers specialized Practical Nurse training for Aboriginal communities. The cost of this program is $5,962.87 for one year.
Additional costs for both programs include pre-clinical placement clearance costs such as:
- hepatitis injections,
- CPR training,
- facial mask fitting, and
- police clearance.
There is no distance education program currently offered, but some non-nursing courses are available online.
For more details about the Practical Nursing (PSW to PN bridging stream) at Mohawk College, visit the Mohawk College website.
Fleming College offers a great bridging opportunity for Personal Support Workers who have graduated from a PSW course at an accredited private or community college.
The courses are housed under the Fleming College Continuing Education & Online Learning program.
You must complete the following bridging courses:
- Bridge PSW to PN filed placement
- Clinical Nursing Informatics
- Communications I (English I),
- Bridged Nursing Theory,
- Anatomy & Physiology,
- Math for Nursing, and
All these courses can be taken part-time however the PN program is a full-time day program offered only at the Sutherland Campus in Peterborough.
Upon completion of the bridging courses, you will be eligible for the second semester of the full-time PN program.
Courses are registered and paid for individually.
All courses take place on their Sutherland campus, cost $5.40 per course hour, and range from 15-60 hours. Courses, therefore, range between $ 104.70 and $ 418.80 each in total.
Find out more details about the Personal Support Worker bridging to Practical Nursing at Fleming College.
George Brown College
George Brown College offers a full-time Personal Support Worker Pathway to the Practical Nursing Program.
This is a 14 – week full-time study program that is completed over 1 semester.
The PSW pathway prepares you for entry into the Practical Nursing program at George Brown.
Upon completion of the bridging pathway, you will be eligible for admission to the Practical Nursing program at George Brown College.
To qualify for admission into the pathway program, applicants must have graduated from a Personal Support Worker Certificate program at a Community College or an accredited Private Career College with a minimum 3.0-grade point average.
Specific requirements are:
- Grade 12 English C or U with a minimum grade of 65%
- Grade 11 Math (M or U) or Grade 12 Math (C or U) with a minimum grade of 65%
Mature Student Requirements
You will be considered a mature student if:
- You are 19 years of age or older, and
- Do not have the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD).
As a mature student, you will have to fulfill additional admission requirements.
You have two options to fulfill the requirements:
- Take an admissions assessment for English and Maths, or
- Upgrade your credentials in English and Maths.
You must complete the following required courses:
- Pathway English,
- Principles in Biology, and
- Health and Wellness
The domestic student tuition fee for this one-semester program is $2006.00.
The George Brown Personal Support Worker Pathway to Practical Nursing is eligible for OSAP funding.
Find out more details of the PSW to Practical Nursing pathway at George Brown College.
***Please note that this program is currently on hold however you may qualify to be admitted directly into the Practical Nursing Program at Algonquin College. ***
The bridging program at Algonquin College is called the “Academic Pathway for Movement from Personal Support Worker to Practical Nursing Program”.
This academic pathway can potentially allow PSW course graduates to immediately enter Level 2 of the Practical Nursing program.
Hence, it is classified as a pathway and not a program.
Students are required to complete a series of classes and if they are successful, will be permitted to apply to Level 2 of the Practical Nursing curriculum without having to take further high school classes or equivalences.
The pathway is designed to provide students with a higher level of knowledge and practice through which they can potentially advance their nursing careers.
All applicants to this pathway:
- Must have the equivalent of one year of full-time practice hours as a PSW which totals 1750 hours.
- Are also expected to have a minimum of 30% of the hours in a Home for the Aged and/or Long Term Care agency.
- Applicants must also have a reference letter from a current or recent employer which describes his or her work experience.
- Applicants who have graduated from a community college must have a minimum GPA of 70% or have obtained a minimum of 70% in their Personal Support Worker program.
- Applicants who have completed their PSW program from a private college or Vocational High School must have 70% overall.
With an entry in May of each year, this program comprises of the following courses:
- Introduction To Psychology,
- PSW to PN Nursing Theory and Seminar, and
- Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology for PSW to PN Bridge
Courses are to be taken individually for $374 to $389 each. The total tuition fee for the course is approximately $1470.
The course itself lasts one semester and students are required to obtain at least 63% in all courses.
A minimum of 55% is required on the Health Occupations Aptitude Exam (HOAE) test which you will be required to take after completing the pathway.
Ten places in the Practical Nursing (PN) program are reserved for students who earn the highest marks with the remaining applicants being placed in a pool to be chosen for the course based on availability.
The program is offered at the school’s Woodroffe Campus.
Find out more details about the Algonquin College PSW to Practical Nursing pathway.
The Conestoga College Personal Support Worker to Practical Nurse bridge allows those who have successfully completed a PSW program to enter the 3rd semester of the Practical Nursing (PN) course offered by this college.
Classes must be taken in a specific order as per guidelines.
This program is offered on a part-time basis with classes being offered one day per week. The bridging course at Conestoga College takes approximately two years to complete.
Some of the highlights of the program are:
- There is only 1 intake into the program that takes place in the winter term,
- Applications open in August of each year, and
- The deadline to apply to this program is in November.
Students who complete this bridging program will then be offered the opportunity to undertake the third semester of the PN program part-time.
There is also a possibility of transferring to full-time if space is available in the full-time program.
The fourth semester of the PN course contains a clinical element and must be taken full-time.
Therefore the bridging courses, in addition to the final two semesters of the PN program, will take between three to four years to complete.
The process might seem to be a bit confusing.
It is best to contact the program facilitator to get more information.
The current program contact is Karen Towler and you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Applicants must have:
- A Personal Support Worker Certificate from an Ontario accredited college,
- You must be currently employed as a Personal Support Worker,
- The following Ontario Secondary School courses (or equivalents), with a minimum cumulative average of 75% are required:
- Grade 12 compulsory English, C or U, or equivalent, OR Conestoga College Preparatory CommunicationsGrade 12 Mathematics, C or U, or equivalent, OR Conestoga College Preparatory MathematicsGrade 11 or 12 Biology, C or U, or equivalent, OR Conestoga College Preparatory BiologyGrade 11 or 12 Physics or Chemistry, C or U, or equivalent, or Grade 11 or 12 Science, OR Conestoga College Preparatory Physics or Preparatory Chemistry
As the program is offered on a part-time basis, course fees are individual and charged per class.
The course is offered at the school’s Doon Campus in Kitchener, Ontario.
Find out more details about the Personal Support Worker to Practical Nursing bridge.
This is a certificate program that prepares you to be eligible for admission to the Practical Nursing Program at Centennial.
This Personal Support Worker – Bridging to Practical Nursing at Centennial College prepares PSWs for entry into the Practical Nursing program by focussing on areas such as:
- Required Math skills, and
- Required knowledge of biology.
This program is designed to prepare you for the nursing program using various modes of learning and incorporates:
- online, and
- collaborative activities.
At the end of this program, graduates will be able to enter the first semester of the Centennial College Practical Nursing Program-Flexible.
In order to apply for this program you:
- must have completed an Ontario Personal Support Worker Certificate as of 2006 and onward,
- You must have taken the PSW program at an Ontario Community College or an accredited Private Career College,
- must have obtained a minimum GPA of 3.5 or 75% overall in the PSW program with no failures,
- Must be a domestic student (no international students).
You can complete this bridging program within 2 semesters.
You must successfully complete the following courses with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in each course:
- Basic Math for Healthcare Providers,
- Introduction to Human Biology,
- Therapeutic Communication, and
- Strategies for Academic Success.
Find out more details about the Personal Support Worker – Bridging to Practical Nursing program at Centennial College.
You can also contact the program administrator at 416 289 5000 ext. 4531 or via email at email@example.com
Sheridan College PSW to PN bridging is very well structured.
There are 4 courses in total and each course can be completed over 4 months.
All the courses can be completed online.
- PSW to PN Biology,
- PSW to PN Chemistry,
- PSW to PN Math, and
- PSW to PN Professional Transitions
Sheridan College PSW to nursing bridging program accepts PSWs with a diploma from a community college.
Those who have completed the PSW diploma from a private college must contact admissions before proceeding.
There is a fee of $325 for each course.
With 4 courses, the total cost of the PSW to PN bridging program at Sheridan College comes out to be approximately $1300.
You can visit the Sheridan College website for more information.
If you want to apply to this program, you can fill out the application here.
What Are You Waiting For?
There are so many opportunities for you to advance your career and there is absolutely no reason you should not.
Once you have determined the right kind of program to suit your lifestyle, you will find that the investment you make in one of these courses will greatly enhance your professional life.
Every attempt is made to ensure that information contained on this article is current and accurate. PSWHQ has provided this information in the best interests to inform the readers and is not liable for any actions taken by any party based on the information provided.
Image credit: “Nurse” used under a Creative Commons Attribution from waltstoneburner on Flickr.