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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Susanna L Cunningham
NURS 499
Seattle Campus

Special Electives

Seminars on selected nursing issues of clinical problems, with independent study option, under supervision of nursing faculty. Credit/no-credit only. Offered: AWSpS.

Class description

This online course will cover normal regulation and common imbalances of the following: fluid balance (extracellular fluid and water balance), electrolytes (potassium, calcium, magnesium & phosphorus) and acid-base.

Most of the course reading assignments will be from the text Clinical Physiology of Electrolyte and Acid-Base Disorders by BD Rose and T Post which has been ordered from the UW bookstore.

Student learning goals

➢ do a thorough assessment of each client to determine their fluid, electrolyte and acid-base status

➢ identify data that is missing from your assessment and what additional needs to be collected prior to diagnosing the individual’s fluid, electrolyte and acid-base status

➢ diagnose the nature of any fluid, electrolyte or acid-base imbalance that a client has, or is at risk of, developing. That is, you will be able to name the imbalance but not necessarily name the cause or causes of the imbalance(s). You should be able to make some hypotheses about the possible cause(s) but will not learn enough to determine the cause exactly.

➢ identify if there are any apparent interactions between the individual’s fluid, electrolyte or acid-base diagnoses.

➢ identify the appropriate types of management for any imbalances

➢ recommend oral food and fluids that will help prevent or manage any imbalances

General method of instruction

Each lesson has an identical format – an introduction to the content, objectives, a reading assignment, PowerPoint slides that you can view, online resources as available, questions to answer on the course ePost and an online self-quiz. For many lessons the questions that you answer on the ePost will relate to analysis of a case so you can actually put the course content to work.

Course is online but instructor would be delighted to arrange an in-person group or individual meeting at a mutally convenient time if requested.

Recommended preparation

Senior in nursing, GNM, or graduate student status. Some prior exposure to fluid, electrolyte and acid-base balance.

Class assignments and grading

If you take the course for two credits evaluation will be by weekly participation in the ePost and a summary case analysis. If you take the course for 3 credits you will also do a short (<5 pages) paper on a topic that both interests you and is related to the course content. One example would be fluid, electrolyte and acid-base imbalances commonly seen in diabetes mellitus OR in pancreatitis OR you choose the condition.

Course is credit, no-credit. Completion of posts to the course forum and completion of self-quizes are the basis for grading.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Susanna L Cunningham
Date: 03/02/2010