Graduate School of Nursing
Promoting Research and Offering Advanced Programs to Professionals
While Taking Advantage of the University Environment
The Graduate School of Nursing was established in April, 2001 when the first class of students graduated from the School of Nursing, which was established in April, 1997. The Graduate School of Nursing was established with the goal of promoting nursing research and offering advanced specialty training while taking advantage of the university environment.
Since its establishment in April 2001, the Graduate School of Nursing has provided a unique curriculum incorporating a variety of common subjects as well as subjects linked with research courses in other faculties, on the basis of its strength as part of the university.
With the rapid progress of innovations in advanced medical technologies, changes in disease structures as represented by lifestyle-related diseases, and aging of the population, along with a declining birthrate, people's attitudes toward health have been altering, with their needs for healthcare services becoming diversified and complicated. Our graduate school develops human resources with humanity and expert skills to solve people's complex health problems and respond to social demands. The graduate school also provides an environment for mutual cooperation in educational and research activities based on agreements with specialized institutions engaged in advanced medicine in Shizuoka Prefecture.
The objectives of the University of Shizuoka Graduate School of Nursing are to prepare nursing professionals so that they: can acquire creative and highly advanced expert competencies; can actively face the challenges appearing in practice, education, and research; and can promote healthy lifestyles, while acutely recognizing the societal changes that are occurring in the 21st century.
In addition, the graduate school's curriculum can take advantage of the school being part of a university. The instructional structure can blend practice, education, and research based on close collaboration with clinical practice in healthcare facilities such as prefectural hospitals.
In each field, the curriculum of the graduate school consists of the common subjects (including elective courses in other departments) and the specialized subjects. Overall, 55 subjects are offered, including Special Research in Nursing. Students obtain a total of at least 30 credits from among these subjects, including the specified compulsory subjects.
After the graduate school had been established for some time, the curriculum has been reviewed several times and reorganized to align the content with the medical needs of the society and the learning needs of nurses in the field. As a result, in 2010 the curriculum was revised to include one field with 10 specialized sub-fields (Health and Medical System, Nursing Management, Nursing Art and Techniques, Community Nursing, Adult and Geriatric Nursing I・II・III, Pediatric Nursing, Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing and Midwifery). The Master's midwifery program was established to prepare advanced expert midwifes who are able to respond to the societal needs.
Training of nursing specialists with rich humanity and insight
In Shizuoka Prefecture there are many large-scale public hospitals engaged in advanced medicine. Based on agreements with some of these specialized institutions, our graduate school provides an environment for mutual cooperation in educational and research activities. Amid the rapid advance of technical innovations in healthcare services, the graduate school trains nursing specialists with rich humanity and insight that enable them to provide flexible care from the patient's viewpoint.
Nurturing of personnel with research experience and human resource development ability
As more students learn nursing in an advanced education setting, we are trying to utilize research results in organizing nursing science. To support the well-being, self-sufficiency, and self-realization of people at various health levels, we nurture researchers able to analyze events they experienced in nursing practice, organize the knowledge they acquired, and apply it to their practice.
Development of personnel able to adequately respond to social needs
In collaboration with other research courses at our university, including pharmaceutical sciences, nutritional and environmental sciences, administration and informatics, and international relations, the Graduate School of Nursing has a curriculum that allows students to take classes in those courses as subjects linked with other fields. By taking advantage of the comprehensive capacity of the university, we nurture personnel who can adapt to the needs of contemporary society and promote nursing practice at the forefront of healthcare.
In addition, the graduate school entered into an academic exchange agreement with the Shizuoka Cancer Center in March 2004 to provide advanced specialized knowledge and skills in the field of cancer care for training and research. This agreement made it possible not only to promote joint research but to further enhance instruction in clinical studies, such as for students in their "applied clinical practice."
Most of the students who attend the graduate school are practicing nurses who work at medical institutions. However, some students are working as public health nurses in the community, and some have experience working in foreign countries with welfare organizations or JICA. The students pursue various areas of study; each student works on challenging issues related to their field of studies.
In the 2005 and 2006 academic years, the graduate school had 11 enrollees, the largest number of enrollees in the school's history. However, this number has not yet reached the maximum number, which is 16 students in a class. From 2005, the Graduate School of Nursing has held an annual open campus to promote the school and to understand the learning needs of the nurses working in medical facilities and in communities. In addition, the graduate school offers special public lectures on various subjects to create opportunities for strengthening our frequent collaboration with those working in the field, as well as providing information.
Towards the Future
In April 2007, the university started operating as a for-profit business entity. There is a plan underway to reform the university as a whole. The Graduate School of Nursing has been investigating the future direction of graduate studies based on societal changes, such as the smaller number of children per family, globalization, and the changes brought about by the development of information technology. New specialized master's degrees in areas whose demand is expected to increase, such as a training program for Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs) who possess advanced competencies and work in areas such as Cancer Care, Children's' Nursing and Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing are being explored. In fact, the preparatory steps required for such courses have already been taken. Another innovation, which is included in the medium-term plan, includes the establishment of a doctoral program so as to build a systematic educational structure for advanced training in nursing in Shizuoka Prefecture.