Pharmacotherapeutics I

I.     Course Prefix/Number: NUR 160

       Course Name: Pharmacotherapeutics I

       Credits: 1 (1 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

BIO 111 or equivalent; concurrent enrollment in the clinical nursing course or nursing chairperson's consent.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course in advanced pharmacology concentrates on nursing implications in assessing patient's responses to pharmacotherapeutics. Content focus is on the nursing process in the administration of drug therapies within the disciplines of gerontology, maternity, and psychiatric nursing.

IV.   Learning Objectives

Students would be able to do the following by the course completion:

  1. Apply the nursing process in solving problems in assessing patient's responses to pharmacotherapeutics.
  2. Determine the rationale for common medications used in pain management, end of life and in the nursing disciplines of gerontology, maternity and psychiatric nursing.
  3. Discuss the resources from which data are accumulated for administration and evaluation of pharmacological treatments.
  4. Describe the educational needs of patients receiving selected pharmacological agents.
  5. Determine the relationship between pharmacologic agents, and physiologic and pathophysiologic responses, in order to administer selected medications safely and effectively.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

Unit I Introduction
Medications for Pain Management
Medication Considerations in End of Life
Unit II Alternative medications - vitamins and herbal treatments
Unit III  Medication Considerations for the Geriatric Clients
Clients with glaucoma; cataract
Clients with cardiovascular dysfunction
Clients with neurological dysfunction
Clients with orthopedic dysfunction
Clients with GI disorders
Clients with diabetes
Unit IV Medication Considerations for the Obstetrical Clients
Prenatal medications
Postnatal medications
Newborn medications
Gynecological medications
Unit V Medications for Client with Pscyho-social dysfunction
Antianxiety medication
Anti-manic medication
Anti-depressant medication
Anti-psychotic medication
Medications used in managing side effects of psychiatric drugs

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Theory: Lecture, discussion, audiovisuals, computer-assisted instruction, critical thinking questions, case studies

Interactive Video: CAI and Videos in Nursing Computer Lab
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Reading: as assigned by course faculty
  2. Writing: as appropriate
  3. Study Guides: facilitating concepts
  4. Mathematics: as required for medication and IV calculations in clinical
  5. Computer Use: as required by course faculty

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Selected by course faculty.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Theory:  Weekly Quiz (9 total) 45%   92-100= A
3 Unit Exams (1 each discipline) 55%   82-91 = B
Standardized Achievement Tests (HESI)    75-81 = C
Below 74 = D

XI.   Other Course Information

  1. Students are expected to attend all scheduled campus nursing classes.
  2. Class policy on:

    Make-up of Tests

    Periodic pre-scheduled examinations shall be given during the semester. Anyone who misses an exam may be allowed, at the discretion of the instructor,to take the test at a later date. In order to make up an exam, the student must call the faculty member to report the absence prior to the pre-scheduled exam time. (See ADN Guidelines.)

    Incomplete Grades
    See College catalog

    Late Assignments
    Failure to submit completed written assignments constitutes an unsatisfactory grade in the course unless arrangements have been made with the instructor.

  3. Support Services:
    Learning Center
    Computer-assisted Instruction
    Instructional Media Services
    Enrollment Management: Enrollment, registration, evaluation and record keeping
    Office of Research: Surveys and reports
    Health Services: Health forms, physicals, and medical tests
    Bookstore: Textbooks
    College Advancement

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.