C159 FAQ’s – You Asked, We Answered

C159 FAQ’s – You Asked, We Answered
Frequently Asked Questions about the C159 Policy Paper
What kind of topic can I write about?
The topic for your paper should be a policy “that improves the health of the public and/or the nursing
profession” (from the task instructions). You can focus on a specific health problem or on a nursing
professional issue. Here are some ideas (just a few) that others have used: 1) a mandate for improved
nursing-to-patient ratios; 2) AEDs and trained personnel in all the schools; 3) mandatory CEUs for RN
license renewal; 4) mandatory nutrition training for cafeteria workers in schools (for childhood
obesity); 5) mandatory nutrition classes in schools for grade school children (for childhood obesity);
wearing helmets for motorcycles, or ATVs, or bicycles for kids; 6) making the state a Compact state to
help with nursing shortages; 7) if a child gets a head injury playing football they MUST go to a
neurologist before returning to the football field.; 8) mandatory in the state that nursing students go
through a Nurse Residency, 9) Outdoor smoking ban in public areas of the community, 10) BSN
required for initial RN license. There is a wide variety in topics! You should choose something you feel
passionate about and would like to advocate for to improve health and health outcomes.
Be sure that the topic you choose impacts more than just a single hospital or organization – you
might suggest a policy for your city/county, a school district, your whole state, or even a national
We strongly recommend that you conduct a quick preliminary literature review Before you start
writing your paper. To meet the rubric criteria, you MUST have at least two Nursing articles to
support your problem and/or the policy change.
How can I find topic ideas related to my specialty area?
Websites for professional organizations often have a Policy or Advocacy section on their websites.
These are policy issues that the organization has identified as priority areas. They often have white
papers or position statements on the issue, and provide some excellent current references to check
out for your own work.
Some organization websites that our students have found especially helpful recently include:
American Nurses Association www.ANA.org
National Association of School Nurses www.NASN.org
Emergency Nurses Association www.ENA.org
Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses www.aprn.org
American Association of Critical Care Nurses https://www.aacn.org/
American Public Health Association www.apha.org
National League for Nursing www.nln.org
Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses www.awhonn.org
National Hospice and Palliative Care Association www.nhpco.org
American Association of Colleges of Nursing http://www.aacn.nche.edu/
Don’t forget to check out your own State Nursing Association, and if you don’t know if your clinical
area has a specialty association – Google it!Where can I find out what laws my state already has about my topic?
State’s each maintain a Legislative website. You can find it by Googling “MyStateName Legislature” or
“MyStateName Statutes”. Most states have excellent search functions so you can type in a broad topic
and you’ll find any current laws and pending bills on that topic.
Where can I find out what laws other states have on my topic?
If you’re interested in a specific state, you can search for that state’s Legislative website. Another
terrific resource is the National Council of State Legislatures www.NCSL.org On this site you use the
search function to enter your topic, results will search current and pending legislation from all states.
Where do I add my “Policy Brief”? Does this need to be a separate document?
You won’t actually write a specific Policy Brief as part of your paper. The focus of this assessment is
that you know the steps it takes to make a policy change. We recommend you use section headings
from the rubric, and answer each of the sections of the rubric as specifically and concisely as possible.
What is “Academically Appropriate Literature”?
Generally, “academically appropriate” or “scholarly” sources would include peer-reviewed articles
published in professional journals or text books, and should be published within the last 5 years.
Information from credible websites (usually those ending in .gov or .edu) can also be used as
references to support your discussion, but do be sure you include a minimum of 2 nursing articles.
How long should my paper be?
The page lengths listed in the instructions are suggested guidelines, and should help give you an idea of
the depth and scope of your responses. Ideally your paper should be between 10 – 15 pages. You
won’t be penalized for going over or under the suggested length, but you should try to be as concise as
possible while providing the references and detail necessary to make your point and address the
criteria in each section. Remember the target audience for your paper are policy makers – not nursing
What is “CBPR” and where can I find out more?
CBPR principles are evidence-based principles for group process. Research on community groups has
shown that groups which use at least some of these principles (strategies) for working together are
most successful in achieving the group’s goals and purpose.
For information about CBPR – Be sure to read through the “Policy Process” unit of the COS. Under the
section titled: Apply: Bottom-Up Approach there is a link to a CBPR handbook titled: Promoting
Healthy Public Policy through Community-Based Participatory Research: Ten Case Studies. You’ll find
lots of great information to guide your paper in this handbook, especially pages 7 – 15 (Overview). You
can also access the Handbook directly here:
You can read more about the CBPR principles in this short article from the University of Washington:
https://depts.washington.edu/ccph/cbpr/u1/u11.phpHow can I cite the “Promoting Healthy Public Policy through CBPR” document in my
We suggest that you use University of California Berkeley, School of Public Health and University of
Washington, Policy Link as the authors of the document. There isn’t a date on the publication, so you
can use “n.d” in the citations and reference to indicate “no date”. We suggest using the APA format
for a Nonperiodical Web Document or Report.
Do you use the Online Writing Lab at Purdue for APA help? We think it’s a great help!
You can always access the APA Resources section of OWL at Purdue here:
How can I find out if other students have already asked my question?
Want to know if your question has already been answered? Simply enter Ctrl+F in the course chatter
(you’ll need to expand the Chatter window first). For example, if you need help related to section B3,
Open the Chatter, enter Ctrl+ F to bring up the Search Box. The Search box will be in the lower left-
hand corner, and has the words “Find it Now”. You can then type what you are looking for there.
Here is a short video about how to use this Search in all your Courses of Study:
I’m “working ahead” in the course but don’t have a Course Mentor, how do I get help?
Let us know if you are working on the course even if you aren’t yet enrolled. You can still access
Course Mentors and get support as you work on your policy paper! If you don’t have an assigned
Course Mentor, you can contact our C159 Mentor Team at: nursingUUT2@wgu.edu
The C159 Chatter is also a place to get quick answers to your questions from Course Mentors and other

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