Advanced Health / Physical Assessment – NURS 505

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 11/10/2020

Course Description

This course focuses on comprehensive physical assessment which includes in-depth health history, physical and psychological signs and symptoms, developmental stages, pathophysiologic changes, and psychosocial and cultural characteristics of the individual, family, and community as client. Enhancement of communication and observational skills are emphasized along with the development of sensitive and refined interviewing techniques. Students must obtain a master’s prepared nurse preceptor who will proctor their final exam which is a comprehensive head-to-toe physical assessment.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


Advanced nursing practice requires refined communication and assessment skills in order to adequately gather pertinent information and employ critical thinking skills in clinical decision-making. The information gathered through interviewing and physical assessment allows the advanced practice nurse to effectively evaluate the patient, develop a care plan, and manage the care of the patient in the hospital, in the home, and in the community.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Obtain a complete health history including a review of systems through a patient interview.
  2. Complete an integrated physical examination in an organized manner within a specified time period.
  3. Differentiate between normal and abnormal health assessment findings.
  4. Synthesize objective and subjective assessment findings.
  5. Develop a nursing plan of care in a SOAP format.
  6. Perform a risk factor and functional assessment for a geriatric client.
  7. Synthesize physical, psychosocial, cultural, and spiritual variables influencing health status when developing a health promotion/risk reduction teaching plan.
  8. Incorporate genetic and genomic health assessment data into biophysical and environmental assessments.
  9. Integrate cultural competence, spiritual sensitivity, respect, and an attitude of a servant’s heart during patient assessment.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Shadow Health

Shadow Health provides a virtual clinical simulation designed to improve student assessment skills in a safe learning environment. Students will examine digital patients throughout the course.

A score of 85% is required for the assignment’s points. Because the exams are in-depth, these assignments will often take over an hour to complete, so it is important to plan enough time to complete assignments each week.

You will be asked to upload a Lab Pass (pdf) after completion of each Shadow Health assignment. Here is a short (no audio) video that will show you how to access the Lab Pass. Your Lab Pass can be generated from the Experience Overview Page after completing your assignment.

Discussion Board Forums (2)

The student will participate in 2 Discussion Board Forums in this course. For each Discussion Board Forum, the student will submit a thread of at least 500 words with at least 1 citation in current APA format. The student will also submit replies of at least 250 words each to 2 classmates’ threads. These forums will utilize the Post First setting.

Shadow Health: Health History

After assigned textbook readings and completion of Shadow Health's Health History Tips and Tricks for completing the Health History assignment,  the student will access Tina, a standardized digital patient through Shadow Health and collect a comprehensive health history on Tina.  Upload results as a .pdf from Lab Pass into the gradebook.


Utilizing a pedigree (genogram) website or software program, the student will collect and depict a 3 full generation pedigree (genogram) on an adult friend or family member.  The genogram will include cause of death, age of death if known, health conditions, familial and communicable diseases, and a genogram key to symbols used. Submit as an M-S word document into Blackboard.

Genomics and Genetics Presentation

The student will create a 15–20-slide PowerPoint presentation (including the title and reference slides) in current APA format. Using the current edition of Essential Genetic and Genomic Competencies for Nurses with Graduate Degrees the student will demonstrate application to a genomic/genetic risk factor or condition. The student must include a minimum of 5 peer-reviewed journal articles written within the past 5 years.

Problem focused exam - SOAP Note

Using Shadow Health Digital Clinical Experience, complete a problem focused exam and SOAP note on a pediatric digital patient. The subjective (S) and objective (O) components must achieve 85%. The assessment (A) and plan (P) must also be satisfactorily completed for full credit.

Cultural and Spiritual Assessment Paper

The student will write a 6–8-page paper (excluding the title and reference pages) in current APA format discussing personal cultural identity and awareness, another culture other than one’s own, the role of the nurse in applying the CLAS standards to patient care, and how to conduct a spiritual assessment. The student must include a minimum of 5 peer-reviewed sources written within the past 5 years.

Proctored, Videotaped, Head-to-Toe Physical Assessment

From memory, the student will complete an integrated head-to-toe assessment of a consenting adult (18 years of age or older). The exam will consist of a student-narrated video describing and performing the head-to-toe physical assessment. The exam will be filmed and uploaded to the student’s unlisted YouTube account. The student will then upload the populated link into Blackboard along with the proctor’s graded rubric. The student must achieve a passing score of B- (168/200) in order to pass the course. Failure to achieve a minimum score of B- on this assignment will result in a final course grade no higher than a C, which will require the course to be retaken.

The video must not exceed 1 hour. This assignment will contain no written components.

The Bloodborne Pathogen form must be signed and on file prior to the head to toe physical assessment being accepted.

Quizzes (4)

The student will complete 4 quizzes throughout the duration of this course, including week 1, week 3, week 4, and week 7. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, containing multiple-choice questions, and have a 2-hour time limit.