Course Descriptions

YEAR 1

Gross Anatomy for Nurse Anesthetists

This course will present and examine the anatomic concepts and conditions essential for critical thinking and decision making by the nurse anesthetist through lecture and discussion.  Specifically, the course will provide the foundation upon which patient interventions may be based during the perioperative period.

Chemistry and Physics for the Nurse Anesthetist

This course is designed to provide the nurse anesthesia student with a foundational knowledge needed for the provision of anesthesia. This course will review elements of general and organic chemistry pertinent to understanding metabolic pathways and pharmacology routinely administered during the anesthetic period. Pertinent laws and principles of physics will be presented. The student will be prepared to apply pertinent laws and principles of physics to the provision of anesthesia services.

Biochemistry for Nurse Anesthetists

This course presents the fundamentals of biochemistry that are necessary for the practice of nurse anesthesia.  After taking the course, students should be able to: 1. Describe the structure and biochemical characteristics of amino acids and proteins, monosaccharides and polysaccharides, lipids, and nucleotides and nucleic acids; 2. Describe enzyme-catalyzed reactions and the factors which influence and regulate enzymatic activity; 3. Describe the fundamentals of metabolism and the generation and use of biochemical energy; 4. Describe the metabolic pathways of glucose, fatty acids and amino acids, with regards to energy production under different nutritional states; 5. Describe the biochemistry of membranes, including the types of lipids and proteins that compose membranes, the bilayer structure of the membrane, and the transport functions of membranes; 6. Describe the fundamentals of the signal transduction processes of glucagon, insulin and steroid hormones.

DNP Scholarship Institute I

This course provides an introduction to the knowledge and skills essential to becoming an advanced practice nurse (APRN).  Students utilize theory, evidence-based practice/research, and clinical expertise to become expert practitioners in their population foci.  Content includes relevant UMKC policies and procedures, technology utilization to conduct library literature searches, access to course content on electronic platforms, and planning for success in graduate school.  The literature review search progresses to application of the content, through written and verbal communication.  Techniques building on critical thinking skills to start clinical diagnostic reasoning skills are introduced along with graduate school expectations and outcomes.

Mammalian Physiology

The course covers basic physiological functions and processes at the cellular, organ and system levels emphasizing concepts of integrated and homeostatic mechanisms.  The relationship between organ function and underlying cellular mechanisms will be discussed in order to understand integrated physiology.  An important objective is that the students will learn how to ask and answer relevant questions.

Pharmacology I

This course aims at offering the student state-of-the-art scientific facts related to the effect of drugs and their mechanisms of action, as well as their untoward side effects. At the conclusion of this course, the student should specifically have full and complete knowledge of:

  1. Principles and general theories underlying drug pharmacokinetic (absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination) and pharmacodynamic (receptor concept) properties.
  2. Classification (generic names will be used) of prescribed and over-the-counter drugs covered.
  3. Mechanisms by which drugs exert their actions.
  4. Tissue receptors with which drugs interact.
  5. Therapeutic uses of drugs.
  6. Contraindications to the use of drugs.
  7. Adverse effects of drugs.
  8. Analysis of patient cases to include identification of the problem, and by pursuing appropriate information (from goals A-G) to find proper resolution and treatment for the case.
  9. Recognition of the signs and symptoms of disease in order to evaluate therapeutic effectiveness or potential drug-related problems.

Graduate Statistics

This graduate statistics online course is designed for students in the DNP program. The course  provides a comprehensive understanding of conceptual understanding of describing data, logic of sampling, and test statistics: hypothesis testing, type 1 and type 2 errors; power, one-way ANOVA (analysis of variance); planned comparisons, post-hoc tests and trend analysis; factorial ANOVA; repeated measures designs and mixed randomized repeated designs simple and multiple regression; and ANCOVA (analysis of co-variance).

Orientation to Nurse Anesthesia Practice

This course is designed to give the first-year nurse anesthesia student a broad field orientation to anesthesia topics. The course will provide a foundation of knowledge for the safe practice of anesthesia. This will be an initial introduction to the art and science of anesthesia. The course content will include: patient preparation for anesthetic procedures along with current medication options, anesthetic equipment, and workplace safety.  The anesthesia machine is incorporated into the learning process to reinforce principles introduced in class.

Pathophysiology

Pathophysiology will focus on the physiological basis of cellular and tissue function and the consequences of dysregulated metabolic/cellular expression on essential homeostatic processes in cells, cytoplasmic compartments and primary organ systems.

Pharmacology II

This course aims at offering the student state-of-the-art scientific facts related to the effect of drugs and their mechanisms of action, as well as their untoward side effects. At the conclusion of this course, the student should specifically have full and complete knowledge of:

  1. Basic principles of chemotherapy.
  2. Classification (generic names will be used) of prescribed and over-the-counter drugs covered.
  3. Mechanisms by which drugs exert their actions.
  4. Tissue receptors with which drugs interact.
  5. Therapeutic uses and other effects of drugs.
  6. Drug interactions and contraindications.
  7. Adverse/toxic effects of drugs.
  8. Recognition of the signs and symptoms of disease in order to evaluate therapeutic effectiveness or potential drug-related problems.

Nursing Research: Evidence-Based Practice

This course is designed to prepare graduate nursing students to utilize research findings in order to provide high quality healthcare and improve nursing practice.  This knowledge includes fundamentals of research methods, procedures for the evaluation of research and the application of research findings to clinical practice and organizational decision making.

Basic Principles of Nurse Anesthesia  Practice

This course is designed to build on topics introduced in orientation and provides the student with the knowledge needed to begin the delivery of anesthesia. This course encompasses a variety of topics including pharmacology and equipment utilized in the provision of anesthesia, airway anatomy and management, commonly administered fluid, colloids, non-colloids, and blood products, and an overview of anesthesia and trauma. Lecture topics will be assimilated into high fidelity simulation scenarios to prepare the student for clinical residency courses.

YEAR 2

Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice I   

This course introduces the nurse anesthesia student to concepts necessary to plan and execute safe individualized anesthetics. Content includes assessment of co-morbid conditions and patient populations in anesthesia, appropriate plans of care, anesthetic techniques, prevention of complications, fluid management, monitoring and utilization of anesthesia equipment. Fundamental concepts and techniques essential to clinical anesthesia practice focus on theoretical, practical and professional considerations involved in the administration of general anesthesia, conscious sedation, and regional anesthesia inside and outside the operating room. Content includes evidence-based student-led conferences, anesthetic literature, morbidity and mortality, inter-disciplinary and intra-disciplinary conferences, and use of informatics systems.

Regional Anesthesia

This course is designed for graduate nurse anesthesia students to review anatomy and local anesthetics and to learn techniques to perform various types of regional anesthesia.  A comprehensive test will be given based on lecture material upon completion of the course, and experiential simulations will accompany many of the techniques discussed throughout the semester.

Advanced Physical Health Assessment for the Nurse Anesthetist I  

This course is designed to teach the nurse anesthesia student a systematic focus on advanced health assessment with an emphasis on the patient preparing to undergo anesthesia throughout the life span. Through patient interview, physical assessment, and interpretation of pertinent laboratory and testing, appropriate anesthesia management will be prepared.

DNP Clinical Institute II

The course provides an introduction to the doctoral competencies required to complete a scholarly project. Students utilize theory, evidence-based practice/research, technology and informatics, and clinical expertise to become expert practitioners in their population foci. The evidence-based process will be presented with an in-depth discussion over specific processes.

Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice II  

This course is designed to provide the nurse anesthesia student a broad knowledge base in multiple concepts, topics and techniques. This course builds on concepts learned in Principles I and delineates techniques of anesthesia management that are considered more situation specific with specialized diagnostic and anesthetic procedures. Primarily focused on patients and existing co-morbidities, the course intensively covers more advanced concepts and principles of anesthetic management including neurosurgical, thoracic, vascular and trauma procedures. Content includes evidence-based student-led morbidity and mortality conferences, inter-disciplinary and intra-disciplinary conferences, use of informatics systems, and simulation-based learning.

Health Care Policy and Leadership in Nurse Anesthesia Practice

This course provides an in-depth study of the healthcare policy process, emphasizing ways that Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) prepared Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) can incorporate health policy advocacy into their practice. The content prepares DNP CRNAs to be effective, innovative leaders in nurse anesthesia and healthcare. Students will participate in a leadership experience in one of four areas: education, research, administration or politics.

Obstetrical Anesthesia

This course is designed to provide the graduate nurse anesthesia student with a broad knowledge base in the field of obstetrical anesthesia.  Anatomy and physiology of pregnancy, co-morbidities in the pregnant patient, and anesthesia procedures for the pregnant patient will be presented. Lecture topics will be assimilated into high fidelity simulation scenarios to prepare the student for clinical residency courses.

Advanced Physical Health Assessment for the Nurse Anesthetist II 

This course is designed to further teach the nurse anesthesia student a systematic focus on advanced health assessment with an emphasis on the patient preparing to undergo anesthesia throughout the life span. Through patient interview, physical assessment, and interpretation of pertinent laboratory and testing, appropriate anesthesia management will be prepared.

Healthcare Outcomes and Epidemiology in Nurse Anesthesia

This course is an introduction to and application of basic epidemiologic principles for the nurse anesthetist.  This course provides the foundation for assessment and evaluation of health outcomes in a variety of populations, clinical settings, and systems.  Concepts introduced include fundamentals of epidemiology, determinants of health, screening, outbreak investigation, and disease surveillance.  The course includes content on descriptive and analytic epidemiology.

Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice III   

The course covers advanced concepts and principles of anesthetic management with emphasis on cardio-thoracic anesthesia and anesthetic emergencies. The course builds on Principles I and II and focuses more on critical thinking, skill development, specific procedures utilized in anesthetic practice including advanced airway techniques and placement of invasive monitoring modalities as well as crisis management in anesthesia. Content includes evidence-based student-led conferences, utilization of anesthetic literature, morbidity and mortality, inter-disciplinary and intra-disciplinary conferences, use of medical informatics systems, and simulation-based learning.

Pharmacology of Anesthesia I

The course is the first in a two-semester sequence designed to provide the graduate nurse anesthesia student with the knowledge of the principles and general theories underlying drug pharmacokinetic (absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination) and pharmacodynamic (receptor concept) properties. Classifications, mechanisms of action and tissue receptor complexes. Therapeutic uses, contraindications and of adverse drug effects associated with specific medications.

Pediatric Anesthesia

This course is designed for the graduate nurse anesthesia student to learn anatomy and physiology specific to the pediatric patient. The most common pathophysiologic states found in the pediatric surgical patient will be discussed as well as fluid management and pharmacology as it relates to the pediatric patient.  The goal of this pediatric course is to give the student the basic knowledge of pediatric anesthesia as a foundation prior to their pediatric clinical rotation.

Acute and Chronic Pain Management

The student will develop a basic understanding of pain management as it relates to the field of anesthesia. Advantages and disadvantages of various pain management approaches, as well as general physiologic and anatomic concepts as they relate to pain, will be covered.  Through the course, various pain management approaches will be implemented and evaluated.  Students will be required to demonstrate proficiency in managing acute pain in patients of all ages and varying stages of wellness.

Comprehensive Review 

This is a comprehensive review course that covers all areas of anesthesia, as well as all anesthesia techniques.  This course will discuss normal physiology and pathophysiology of all organ systems and how various anesthesia techniques and pharmacology affect these systems.  The student will be equipped with the knowledge of how to choose appropriate anesthetic techniques for various disease states and surgical procedures.

Scholarly Project in Nurse Anesthesia I

This is the first in a series of four courses that culminate in a scholarly project in nurse anesthesia that demonstrates the scholarship of integration and application.  This is a distance education course.  The student will identify a complex problem in their area of interest and expertise, and will design, implement and evaluate an innovative solution to this problem.  The student will use the breadth of knowledge and scholarship skills gained through their program of study to improve practice and/or patient outcomes.  It validates the student’s ability to translate research evidence into practice.  This project lays the foundation for future scholarship.

YEAR 3

Health Systems, Economics and Quality

This course is designed to introduce the nurse anesthesia student to the fundamental principles of healthcare economics and healthcare systems. The effects of economics will be discussed from a broad viewpoint and from the various perspectives of anesthesia care delivery models as well as the impact of quality indicators on anesthesia practice.

Pharmacology of Anesthesia II

This course is the second in a two-semester sequence designed to provide the graduate nurse anesthesia student with the knowledge of pharmacology and the human physiologic responses to pharmacologic agents when administered to the patient perioperatively.

Scholarly Project in Nurse Anesthesia II 

This is the second in a series of four courses that culminate in a scholarly project in nurse anesthesia that demonstrates the scholarship of integration and application.  This is a distance education course.  The student will identify a complex problem in their area of interest and expertise, and will design, implement, and evaluate an innovative solution to this problem.  The student will use the breadth of knowledge and scholarship skills gained through their program of study to improve practice and/or patient outcomes.  It validates the student’s ability to translate research evidence into practice.  This project lays the foundation for future scholarship.

Anesthesia and Co-Existing Diseases I  

This course is the first in a two-semester series designed to provide senior nurse anesthesia students with the knowledge of pathophysiology of various disease states and their anesthesia implications.

Professional Practice for the Nurse Anesthetist

This course is designed to explore a range of non-clinical issues in nurse anesthesia practice. Students will gain an appreciation of the professional ideals of the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) prepared Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) through both online and on-site group discussion. In addition, students will attend professional meetings including: Student Registered Nurse Anesthetist (SRNA) Leadership Luncheon, Missouri Association of Nurse Anesthetists (MoANA) Lobby Day; Wellness in the Workplace, an event highlighting the risk of chemical dependency in nurse anesthesia practice; and one state or national professional meeting.

Scholarly Project in Nurse Anesthesia III

This is the third in a series of four courses that culminate in a scholarly project in nurse anesthesia that demonstrates the scholarship of integration and application.  This course is a face-to-face course.  The student will identify a complex problem in their area of interest and expertise, and will design, implement, and evaluate an innovative solution to this problem.  The student will use the breadth of knowledge and scholarship skills gained through their program of study to improve practice and/or patient outcomes.  It validates the student’s ability to translate research evidence into practice.  This project lays the foundation for future scholarship.

Anesthesia and Co-Existing Diseases II 

This course is the second in a two-semester series designed to provide senior nurse anesthesia students with the knowledge of pathophysiology of various disease states and their anesthesia implications.

Scholarly Project in Nurse Anesthesia IV

This is the fourth in a series of four courses that culminate in a scholarly project in nurse anesthesia that demonstrates the scholarship of integration and application.  This course is a face-to-face course. The student will identify a complex problem in their area of interest and expertise, and will design, implement, and evaluate an innovative solution to this problem.  The student will use the breadth of knowledge and scholarship skills gained through their program of study to improve practice and/or patient outcomes.  It validates the student’s ability to translate research evidence into practice.  This project lays the foundation for future scholarship.