Care of the Hospitalized Adult 1

This is the first course in a four-course Certificate in Hospital & Acute Care for Nurse Practitioners.

The certificate builds upon the foundational knowledge acquired through entry-to-practice education and the acquisition of entry-to-practice competencies. The certificate will equip Nurse Practitioners with the knowledge and tools to confidently assess, diagnose and develop a treatment plan for the acutely ill adult patient, hospitalized with a broad range of conditions and facilitate a foundation for advanced nursing care of the ill or critically ill patient.

This 8-week online course consists of 7 weeks of course material; and one week for final short answer exam. Participants will focus on developing diagnostic reasoning and therapeutic planning skills in the context of managing acute patient presentations in hospital settings in the following clinical areas: Cardiology (acute heart failure and chest pain), “Thinking like a Hospital Pharmacist, including appropriate antibiotic use and Clinical Pearls), Diagnostic Reasoning, The role of the NP in Acute Care and Leadership, and Acute Pain management.

An interactive and case-based approach is utilized to review acute clinical problems with an emphasis on diagnostic reasoning and therapeutic planning skills. Clinical experts will discuss the differential diagnosis, relevant pathophysiology, identification of assessment findings, the relevant diagnostic approach, the therapeutic plan of care, and the red flags that require intervention or consultation.


Currently registered as a Nurse Practitioner or a student in a nurse practitioner program.


Nurse Practitioners who wish to further develop their competency, knowledge, skill and clinical acumen in the care of clients with mental health and addictions issues. Course participants must hold current registration as a Nurse Practitioner in their jurisdiction or be a student in a nurse practitioner program.

Learning Objectives:

At the completion of the 4-course certificate program, learners will be able to:

A. Articulate the role and competencies of a Nurse Practitioner working with hospitalized adult patients.

  • Discuss key role and scope issues relevant to the NP role in hospitals.
  • Identify accountabilities and necessary skills of NPs in the most responsible provider role.
  • Demonstrate confidence to practice independently and collaboratively.

B. Display sound diagnostic reasoning skills by successfully developing a broad differential diagnosis and diagnostic and treatment plan for selected patient conditions.

C. State the clinical care requirements and management for a wide variety of acute clinical conditions in adult hospitalized patients including the ability to: 

  • Conduct the appropriate advanced health assessment strategy.
  • Develop an appropriate differential diagnosis.
  • Recognize red flags and how to triage patients who may require a higher level of care and/or patients that are rapidly deteriorating.
  • Choose an appropriate diagnostic testing strategy.
  • Identify a treatment strategy and an evaluation plan.
  • Select appropriate technical interventions and treatments (if relevant).
  • Describe indications for necessary consultations and referral.
  • Identify accountabilities for communication at transitions in care and for safe discharge.
  • Communicate relevant priorities for secondary prevention.

Available Now

Course Format

This course is a fully online course through the University of Toronto Learning Portal – QUERCUS. Each week, participants will view an e-learning module, review required readings and resources, and actively engage with learning activities that will focus on application of learning. Learning activities and assignments will provide opportunity to apply learnings and receive feedback. Live sessions (also recorded) will be scheduled during the course to review key assignments.

Participants can expect to allocate a minimum of 5-10 hours a week for completion of a weekly module and allocate additional time for assignments. The time required will vary based on your learning needs and style of learning. Most weeks will include an application exercise such as a learning activity.

Each week will consist of a recorded lecture by faculty who are expert clinicians in their field. Faculty will be available for questions through discussion board during the scheduled week for the module. Each week focuses on one or more health systems or clinical themes, discussion of the appropriate health assessment, relevant differential diagnoses, pathophysiology, red flags, diagnostics and diagnostic sensitivity/specificity, therapeutic plan of care, selection of appropriate technical interventions and treatments, and indications for referral and/or consultation, considerations in transitions in care/discharge, and relevant role and scope issues.  Additional clinical resources will be provided such as clinical practice guidelines, relevant practice standards, and clinical tools for practice.

Other Courses in this Certificate Program

Care of the Hospitalized Adult 2

This is the second course in a four-course Certificate in Hospital & Acute Care for Nurse Practitioners. The certificate builds upon the foundational knowledge acquired through entry-to-practice education and the acquisition […]

Care of the Hospitalized Adult 3

This is the third course in a 4-course Certificate in Hospital & Acute Care for Nurse Practitioners. The certificate builds upon the foundational knowledge acquired through entry to practice education and […]

Care of the Hospitalized Adult 4

This is the fourth course in a four-course Certificate in Hospital & Acute Care for Nurse Practitioners. The certificate builds upon the foundational knowledge acquired through entry to practice education and […]

Course Director

Marnee Wilson

Assistant Professor


Jeremy Edwards

Division of Cardiology, St. Michael’s Hospital
Lecturer, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto

Reem Haj

Clinical Pharmacy Specialist Leader, St. Michael’s Hospital

Karen Konieczny


Salima Ladak

Nurse Practitioner, Acute Pain Service, Toronto General Hospital,
University Health Network
Coordinator UHN APN Network
Clinical Scientist, TGH Research Institute
Adjunct Lecturer, Lawrence Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing

Financial Assistance

OSAP Funding

The Ontario Student Assistance Program now offers funding for micro-credentials (short training programs offered by post-secondary institutions), including a number of courses offered by the Centre for Professional Development. This funding initiative is part of Ontario’s micro-credentials strategy, helping learners access more opportunities to train or upskill for in-demand jobs through loans and grants.

How to Apply for OSAP Funding

This course is OSAP approved (more approved courses are listed below, and you can also verify on the Micro-credentials Portal). To apply for financial assistance through OSAP you will need to establish an OSAP account. You must apply before the course completion date. Visit

Once you have registered for an eligible OSAP Micro-credential program, the University Registrar’s Office requires a Micro-Credential Program information form to be completed to process your OSAP application. Please fill out the top section of the form and send it to to get assistance in completing the form.

For questions regarding the OSAP Micro-Credential funding, eligibility or application process, please contact UofT’s Enrolment Services directly at, or by phone at 416-978-2190 for assistance.

Contact Us

Centre for Professional Development
Lawrence Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing
University of Toronto
155 College Street, Suite 130
Toronto, ON, Canada
M5T 1P8