Organizing Framework

The organizing framework of the School of Nursing is composed of four major concepts of the metaparadigm of the profession of nursing. These are person, health, environment, and nursing. The curriculum is designed to reflect the relationships among and between the elements.


Person includes individuals, families, and communities. Person implies a genetic endowment that sets the stage for subsequent growth, development, and health potential, and is strongly influenced by the environment and provides the baseline or foundation for health. Communication among and between persons, which influences development, health choices, decisions and meanings, is central to human connectedness. Person also includes development, which is a process that continues throughout the lifespan and encompasses the physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and cultural.


Environment provides the context in which person and health connect. Environment includes: physical, political, economic, social, and cultural realities that must be considered in planning the delivery of comprehensive health care for individuals, families, and communities.


Nursing is composed of knowledge and caring processes that foster the health of persons in their environment. This knowledge base is derived from nursing theory and research, as well as the basic and applied sciences and humanities. The nurse applies knowledge through caring and the processes of nursing therapeutics, critical thinking, decision making, teaching, advocacy, leadership/management, and research. Nurses practice in accordance with evolving legal, ethical, and professional standards.


Health is persons' actualization of inherent and acquired human potential and is influenced by life experiences, environment, resources, and stressors. Health includes a sense of well-being, satisfying relationships and behavioral adjustments necessary to maintain structural integrity. Future health is determined by current decisions and behaviors as well as the impact of the environment.