General Nursing

Introductory statement

Rwanda is dramatically changing in terms of social and demographic trends. A demographic survey conducted in 2012 revealed that the population of Rwanda has continually increased since 2002 (DHS, 2012). This is translated in an emergency of public health enhancement program efficiently able to face an augmentation in a number of various health problems such as malaria, respiratory infections, diarrhea, intestinal parasites, skin diseases, HIV/AIDS, STI, tuberculosis, typhus, cholera, and meningitis among others. Some of the principal health problems are kwashiorkor, infectious hepatitis, dysentery, malaria, and tuberculosis. Only 50% of the population has access to safe drinking water. Recently, the spread ofAIDS has become a further health problem. Trauma has been a major health issue in Rwanda during the last decade. These are cases which could be prevented and treated by health professionals trained to meet the community needs.

However, Health workforce shortages are a global problem. They are further exacerbated in Rwanda due to the Genocide of 1994 and a disproportionate loss of health workers that Rwanda faced after those tragic events. Thus, Rwanda has been identified as one of 57 countries with a critical shortage of health workforce personnel in the world (WHO, 2006). This shortage has manifested itself in the form of inadequate services management and poor health services outcomes for patients, as well as limited and/ or inappropriate interventions at the individual, family, or community level.

In fact, the Ministry of health of Rwanda (2010) declared that there is one nurse per 1,500 inhabitants while the World Bank's report published in 2013 similarly identified 0.7 nurses per 1000 people in 2010. The majority of nurses were trained at the secondary level (A2) and spread throughout the whole country's hospitals and health centers.

It is also identified that the quality of the health care services is directly related to the number and educational background of health professionals especially nurses; so, Rwandan vision 2020 program calls for an increase in professional nurses with up to 20 nurses per 10,000 inhabitants. To achieve this, an augmentation in higher learning institutions number in the country is very much required. It is in this context that UG has started this program of Advanced Diploma in General Nursing aiming at meeting the needs of the country and this sub-region in general.


The School of Nursing is an integral part of the University Of Gitwe (UG) and as such, subscribes to the three purposes of the institute: Education, Research, and Service. The primary mission of the School of Nursing is to improve the health and well-being of society through the impact of our research and by educating nurses for leadership in academic and practice roles. The School achieves its mission by building a community that draws its intellectual strength from the rich diversity of people. The School of Nursing advances the science of our field as well as contributes to general knowledge development. The faculty and students engage in service activities that benefit our communities and that advance the profession of nursing. The School’s faculty practices are part of our service mission and are aligned with interdisciplinary partners and institutions that provide for integration of our research, education, and practice activity. The School’s faculty practices are demonstrations of innovation in methods and set high standards for excellence.


Lead the nation and influence the world through the impact of our research, educational programs and practice innovations on health.

Admission Criteria

Click here to download the admission requirements (UPDATED: All programs)


According to the guidelines defined in Rwanda National Qualification Framework for Higher Education, set up by the High Education Council of (HEC), the awards follow a credit-based scheme. According to the required competencies and skills for the graduates, the successful candidates are awarded an Advanced Diploma in General Nursing.

Program Profile

This program is a set of six full-time semesters composed of 430 credits which include class-based courses and clinical placement on an unequal path (30% for theories and 70% practices) for professional modules. However, there are some additional module components related to the mainstream beliefs and philosophy of the Institution such as Religion. Moreover, some crosscutting modules are undertaken along the program in order to ensure the competitiveness of the program on the labor market namely communication skills and ICT integration among others.

Teaching/Learning Strategies

Lectures, collaborative and participatory methods, group discussion, case studies, workshops, brainstorming, library, computer and skills lab assignments, presentations, demonstrations, practice and re-demonstration, drama, role play, simulation, debates are the learning strategies available with this program.

Assessment Strategies

Continuous Assessment Tests (CAT): Individual and group assignment (written and oral presentation), OSCE: 60%, and final exam: 40%

Assessment Pattern

Components Weighing (%)Learning objectives covered
In-course assessment:
Individual and group assignments15%All
Final examination40%All learning outcomes

Exit Profile

Graduates from this program will be able to assume professional competent nurses' responsibilities in providing promotive, preventive, curative, and rehabilitative care in the community, health centers, district and referral hospitals.

Career Opportunities

The broad training in nursing provides opportunities at the national and international level. Graduates from this program will be able to work as registered nurses in hospitals, health centers, community, nursing education institutions, health research centres, clinics, health-related NGOs, and health administration.


Dean of Faculty of General Nursing

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