Accreditation of University Nursing Programmes in Canada


  • Barbara Thomas
  • Anne-Marie Arseneault
  • Jeannette Bouchard
  • Edith Coté
  • Sheila Stanton


Educational programmes for health professionals, including nurses, have been established in response to the need for health services in a particular society (French, 1978). Governments and professional groups have made considerable effort to ensure that educational programmes are preparing the appropriate number of well-qualified practitioners needed to address current and future health needs of Canadians effectively (CAUSN, 1984). Accreditation of educational programmes in university schools of nursing is seen as a mechanism of external regulation to ensure standards of nursing practice and promote programmes that are responsive to societal needs (CAUSN, 1984; French, 1978). Nursing education in Canada has evolved to the extent that accreditation of schools of nursing in universities is now regularly carried out. To appreciate the current level of activities, it is important to place the origins of nursing education in Canada in perspective. Overview of Nursing Education in Canada Nursing education in Canada began in 1874 with the establishment of the first nursing school at the General and Marine Hospital in St. Catharines,