Choosing The Right Path After Nursing School

NUR 300 Final Project Guidelines and Rubric


The world of professional nursing practice and health policy is ever evolving to meet the new dynamics of care needs in every setting. As a registered nurse, you are accountable and responsible for making decisions that are consistent with safe, competent, and ethical practices on a daily basis. You also face a variety of complex issues that impact the delivery of your nursing care.

A professional practice issue is any issue or situation that either compromises client care or service by placing a client at risk or affects a nurse’s ability to provide care or service consistent with standards and guidelines and agencies’ and organizations’ policies or procedures.

The final project for this course is a formal written paper that addresses a professional nursing practice issue of your choosing, with your instructor’s approval. You will use evidence-based, peer-reviewed journals and professional databases to identify current literature about the professional practice issue you choose. In addition, you will use literature sources to identify a relevant nursing conceptual framework (or model) that is relevant to the nursing issue that you have chosen. A summation of the literature will be provided. Following this, you will write about the relationships that exist between the literature review of the issue and the current state of nursing practice. Conversely, you might also write about points of contrast between the literature and the actual state of nursing practice. In concluding the paper, you should reiterate the professional nursing practice issue and identify the most salient points of the literature review. The nursing framework will be briefly summarized in terms of how it was related to the practice issue. Finally, you will be asked to briefly reflect upon the writing and identify whether or not the literature review provided support for the issue. Implications of the research for your own practice will complete the paper.


In this assignment, you will demonstrate your mastery of the following course outcomes:

  • Analyze advanced nursing practice roles in investigating potential professional development opportunities
  • Employ appropriate scholarly healthcare resources in researching clinical practice issues
  • Employ nursing conceptual frameworks in informing evidence-based clinical practice solutions
  • Assess the implications of licensure, certification, and scope of practice on professional nurses’ ability to deliver safe, quality care
  • Assess the impact of changing healthcare delivery systems on nursing practice for improving client care


This project is a formal paper that addresses a professional nursing practice issue of your choice (see the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s website for topic ideas). You may also consider topics such as staffing ratios, the merits of the BSN degree, delegation to unlicensed assistive personnel, or the role of the professional nurse in assisted suicide, with your instructor’s approval. To cover the appropriate range of the research, you should consider using between three and five scholarly or professional sources that establish context for your issue, literature review, legal and ethical implications, relevance to nursing practice, and your conclusion. For this assignment, use the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) database and Cochrane database to identify current information on the topic. Current peer-reviewed, scholarly journals may also be used.

Specifically, the following critical elements must be addressed:

  1. IntroductionIdentify your selected nursing practice issue.Provide a brief explanation of why you selected it.
  1. Literature Review: In order to cover the appropriate range of the research, you should consider using between three and five peer-reviewed journalsand/or scholarly or professional databases as your sources of information.
    1. Identify the current journals, databases, or other sources you have chosen to serve as the basis of your paper.
  • Justify why you feel the sources you have chosen are the most appropriate ones for your issue.
    • Discuss how you selected the research material from those sources that most appropriately address your issue.
  • Summarize the information you have collected from your research with regard to your issue. In other words, read your chosen articles andsummarize what the authors are saying. Be sure to use proper APA format for your citations.
  1. Drawing Connections
  1. Discuss the extent to which the literature supports the professional issue. In other words, think about whether or not the literature reflects the current issue or problem. Does the literature agree or disagree? In what way? Discuss what the authors are saying with regard to the issue.
  • Analyze your issue in terms of its legal and ethical implications. Be sure to provide specific examples to substantiate your claims.
    • Assess your issue for its implications on professional licensure.

IV.       Relevance to Healthcare Delivery

  1. Explain the relationship between your issue and overall healthcare delivery.
  • Assess the extent to which your issue might improve or hinder patient care. Be sure to provide current scholarly evidence to support your position.
  • Theoretical Foundations
  1. Select a current conceptual framework that most appropriately applies to your issue. What are the main points of the conceptual model? How do these points relate to your selected issue? Be sure to explain your rationale behind your selection.
  • Suggest an alternative conceptual framework that might appropriately apply to your issue, being sure to substantiate your claims with specific examples and research.

VI.       Concluding Reflection

  1. What impact do you feel the issue you selected might have on your own practice as a professional nurse? Be sure to provide current scholarly evidence to support your position.
  • Discuss the ramifications of the issue you selected on your own nursing licensure and practice. In other words, how would this issue affect your nursing license and your overall nursing practice if you encountered it in your work?
  • c)       How is healthcare delivery overall affected by your issue? In other words, how does the issue that you chose affect healthcare in general and the delivery of quality healthcare?


Milestone One: Identify a Topic

This milestone is due in Module Two. Identify a topic for the final issue paper and propose one conceptual model that will provide the framework for the issue paper. This is a non-graded but required activity.

Milestone Two: Literature Review for the Issue Paper

This milestone is due in Module Three. For this milestone assignment, you will submit a presentation that includes the highlights of your literature review. This milestone is graded with the Milestone Two Rubric.

Milestone Three: Drawing Connections and Relevance

This milestone is due in Module Four. This milestone assignment focuses on the Drawing Connections and the Relevance portions of the issue paper. This milestone is graded with the Milestone Three Rubric.

Milestone Four: Theoretical Foundations and Conclusion

This milestone is due in Module Five. This milestone is graded with the Milestone Four Rubric.

Final Project: Submit

The final project is due in Module Seven. This final project is graded with the Final Project Rubric.

Final Project Rubric

Guidelines for Submission: Your paper should be between 5 and 7 pages in length, not including your cover page and references page, and should be formattedusing Times New Roman, 12-point font, and one-inch margins. All citations should be made using proper APA publication format.

Critical ElementsExemplary (100%)Proficient (85%)Needs Improvement (55%)Not Evident (0%)Value
Introduction: IssueMeets “Proficient” criteria andIdentifies, with precision, theIdentifies, generally, a selectedDoes not identify selected6
 uses industry-specific language toselected nursing practice issuenursing practice issuenursing practice issue 
 establish expertise    
Introduction:Meets “Proficient” criteria andClearly articulates rationale forArticulates rationale for issueDoes not provide an explanation6
Explanationuses industry-specific language toissue selectionselection but with gaps in clarityfor issue selection 
 establish expertise    
Literature Review:Meets “Proficient” criteria andIdentifies current journals,Identifies journals, databases, orDoes not identify journals,4.5
Sourcesoffers insightful review ofdatabases, or other sourcesother sources, but they are notdatabases, or other sources 
 sources from professionalappropriate to selected issuecurrent or are not appropriate to  
 databases and how they are selected issue  
 appropriate to the chosen issue    
Literature Review:Meets “Proficient” criteria andAccurately justifiesJustifies appropriateness ofDoes not justify appropriateness4.5
Appropriateoffers insightful explanation ofappropriateness of selectedselected professional sources butof selected sources 
 the appropriateness of selectedprofessional sourceswith gaps in accuracy  
Literature Review:Meets “Proficient” criteria andDiscusses selection criteria forDiscusses selection criteria forDoes not discuss selection4.5
Selectedoffers keen insight into rationaleresearch material appropriate toresearch material, but with gapscriteria for research material 
 for the selection criteriaselected issuein detail or relevancy  
Literature Review:Meets “Proficient” criteria andAccurately summarizesSummarizes informationDoes not summarize information4.5
Summarizeoffers professional commentaryinformation collected fromcollected from research withcollected from research 
 about the information collectedresearch with regard to selectedregard to selected issue, but with  
 from researchissuelimited summations and gaps in  
Connections:Meets “Proficient” criteria andComprehensively discusses theDiscusses the extent to which theDoes not discuss the extent to6
Supportsdraws insightful connectionsextent to which the literatureliterature supports the issue, butwhich the literature supports the 
 between literature and the issuesupports the issuewith gaps in detailissue 
Connections: LegalMeets “Proficient” criteria, andComprehensively analyzes theAnalyzes the issue in terms ofDoes not analyze the issue in6
and Ethicalanalysis is exceptionally clear andissue in terms of legal and ethicallegal and ethical implications, butterms of legal and ethical 
 well-informedimplicationswith gaps in detailimplications 
Connections:Meets “Proficient” criteria andComprehensively assesses theAssesses the issue for itsDoes not assess the issue for its6
Licensureoffers professional insights aboutissue for its implications onimplications on licensure, butimplications on licensure 
 the implications for licensurelicensurewith gaps in detail  
Relevance:Meets “Proficient” criteria andExplains the relationshipExplains the relationshipDoes not explain the relationship6
Relationshipdraws insightful connectionsbetween the issue and overallbetween the issue and overallbetween the issue and overall 
 between the issue andhealthcare deliveryhealthcare delivery, but withhealthcare delivery 
 healthcare delivery gaps in detail or accuracy  
Relevance: PatientMeets “Proficient” criteria andAssesses the extent to which theAssesses the extent to which theDoes not assess the extent to6
Careprovides detailed examples ofissue might improve or hinderissue might improve or hinderwhich the issue might improve or 
 how the issue will improve orpatient care and provides currentpatient care, but does nothinder patient care 
 hinder patient carescholarly evidence to supportprovide current scholarly  
  positionevidence to support position  
Theoretical: CurrentMeets “Proficient” criteria andSelects a current conceptualSelects a conceptual framework,Does not select a conceptual6
Frameworkprovides detailed examples offramework appropriate to thebut it is not current , is notframework that applies to the 
 how the framework applies toissue and explains rationaleappropriate to the issue, or doesissue 
 the issuebehind selectionnot explain rationale behind  
Theoretical:Meets “Proficient” criteria andSuggests an alternativeSuggests an alternativeDoes not suggest an alternative6
Alternativeprovides detailed examples ofconceptual frameworkconceptual framework that is notconceptual framework 
Frameworkhow the framework applies toappropriate to the issue andappropriate to the issue, or does  
 the issuesubstantiates claims with specificnot substantiate claims with  
  examples and researchspecific examples and research  
ConcludingMeets “Proficient” criteria andDiscusses impact of issue on ownDiscusses impact of issue on ownDoes not discuss impact of issue6
Reflection: Ownoffers keen insights from thepractice as professional nursepractice as professional nurse,on own practice as professional 
Practiceliterature and professionaland provides current scholarlybut provides evidence that is notnurse 
 practice concerning the impact ofevidence to support positioncurrent, is not scholarly, or does  
 the issue not provide evidence  
ConcludingMeets “Proficient” criteria andAccurately articulates theArticulates the ramifications ofDoes not articulate the6
Reflection: Licensureoffers keen insights from theramifications of the issue onthe issue on one’s own nursingramifications of the issue on 
 literature and professionalone’s own nursing licensure andlicensure and practice, but withone’s own nursing licensure and 
 practice concerning the impact ofpracticegaps in accuracy and descriptionpractice 
 the issue    
ConcludingMeets “Proficient” criteria andAccurately discusses howDiscusses how healthcareDoes not discuss how healthcare6
Reflection:draws insightful connectionshealthcare delivery overall isdelivery overall is affected by thedelivery overall is affected by the 
Healthcare Deliverybetween the issue and overallaffected by the issueissue but with gaps in accuracyissue 
 healthcare delivery    
Articulation ofSubmission is free of errorsSubmission has no major errorsSubmission has major errorsSubmission has critical errors10
Responserelated to citations, grammar,related to citations, grammar,related to citations, grammar,related to citations, grammar, 
 spelling, syntax, and organizationspelling, syntax, or organizationspelling, syntax, or organizationspelling, syntax, or organization 
 and is presented in a professional that negatively impact readabilitythat prevent understanding of 
 and easy-to-read format and articulation of main ideasideas 
    Earned Total100%
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