Baccalaureate Education Conference

AACN's Baccalaureate Education Conference is a forum for faculty, deans, and other academic leaders engaged in undergraduate and pre-licensure nursing education programs.

The Baccalaureate Education Conference is a forum for faculty in baccalaureate nursing education programs to explore issues of mutual interest and share ideas and successful strategies. The Fall Executive Development Series (EDS) is offered in conjunction with the Baccalaureate Education Conference. This series increases the knowledge and skills needed for successful leadership in a school of nursing at a time of complex and accelerating change in health care and higher education.

The Faculty Development Conference is offered as a 1.5 day informative program prior to the Baccalaureate Education Conference. The event is aimed at faculty who would like to enhance their knowledge and skills for teaching in baccalaureate and higher degree programs. Sessions address aspects of the faculty role such as creating an active learning environment, clinical teaching and student evaluation.

Do you plan on attending the FRN session at the Baccalaureate Education Conference? Visit the FRN website.

New Livestreaming Option for Baccalaureate Conference

Our inaugural live stream is scheduled for November 16 from 4:00-5:15 pm (ET) from the Baccalaureate Education Conference, featuring the dynamic visionary and skilled leader Cy Wakeman President and Founder of Reality-Based Leadership. During her presentation, Mrs. Wakeman shares her approach to reducing conflict and solving long-term problems in academic nursing leadership. Learn more >>

Hotel Information

The Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel
265 Peachtree Center Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30303
Phone: 404-521-0000

  • The room rate is $194 single/double.
  • The cutoff date for reservations at the group rate is October 23, 2017.
  • For reservations, call 1-800-228-9290 and request the group rate for AACN/ Baccalaureate Education Conference. You may also place your reservation online.
  • The room block may fill before the deadline, so please make your reservation early. If/when the room block fills, AACN will post a list of alternative hotel on its website.

The Atlanta Marriott Marquis is sold out for the night of November 14th.

The following hotels are within walking distance of the Atlanta Marriott Marquis and may have availability over the conference dates:

Hyatt Place Atlanta Downtown (approximately 4 minutes)
330 Peachtree Street NE
Atlanta, GA 30308
Phone: 404-577-1980

Doubletree by Hilton Atlanta Downtown (approximately 8 minutes)
160 Ted Turner Drive, NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
Phone: 404-688-8600

Hampton Inn & Suites Atlanta Downtown (approximately 8 minutes)
161 Ted Turner Drive, NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
Phone: 404-589-1111


The Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel is located approximately 12 miles from the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL). Taxi fare is approximately $35 from the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. For additional ground transportation options, please visit

The Atlanta Marriott Marquis offers valet and off-site parking: the valet parking fee is $35 a day; the off-site parking is $4 hourly and $20 daily.

Above rates are subject to change.

Continuing Education Credit

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Commission on Accreditation.

Continuing nursing education (CNE) hours will be awarded to those who attest to attendance at entire sessions and complete the electronic evaluation process after the conference. The CNE certificate will be provided online only after completion of evaluation.

Dietary and Special Needs

If you have any dietary restrictions (e.g., vegetarian, kosher, or gluten-free) or special needs, please email us prior to the event at

Contact Information

AACN Conference Team
655 K Street, NW, Suite 750
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-463-6930

Thursday, November 16
Friday, November 17
Saturday, November 18

8:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Registration Desk and Networking Lounge Open

12:00-7:00 p.m.
Learning Center Open
Get exclusive access to high-profile exhibitors showcasing their innovative products and services in our Learning Center. As industry experts and solution-providers, they have the answers to your questions. Seize the opportunity to engage with renowned authors at planned book signings.

Open Thursday and Friday.

2:00-3:30 p.m.
Welcome and Opening Plenary Session
Changes to the NCLEX: Preparing the Graduates of the Future

The National Council of State Boards of Nursing is in the process of updating the NCLEX exam to more accurately reflect the knowledge base required of a Registered Nurse in a rapidly changing healthcare environment. We are in a period of swift, transformative change and nurses are making more critical decisions at all levels of the healthcare system. Come hear Dr. Dickison as he describes the evolution of the new exam. 
Speaker:Philip Dickison, PhD, RN, Chief Officer of Examinations, National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Chicago, IL

3:30-4:00 p.m.
Networking Break

4:00-5:15 p.m.
Plenary Session
Reality-Based Leadership: Implications for Academic Nursing Leadership

Cy Wakeman, author of Reality Based Leadership, and No Ego, provides dynamic examples and specific strategies to start leading first and managing second in an academic environment. Utilizing innovative methodologies, this presentation emphasizes how to deal with the facts of your reality while minimizing the drama. A dynamic visionary and a skilled leader, Ms. Wakeman shares her approach to reducing conflict and solving long term problems.
Speaker:Cy Wakeman, MS, President and Founder, Reality-Based Leadership, Omaha, NE

5:15-7:00 p.m.
“Welcome to Atlanta” Networking Reception with Poster Presentations
Our opening reception provides a great forum to network, mingle with friends and colleagues, talk with our poster presenters, and to once again visit our exhibits. There is no better way to kick-off our conferences than by attending this event.


8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Registration Desk and Networking Lounge Open

8:00-9:30 a.m.
Light Continental Breakfast and Poster Viewing

8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
Learning Center Open

9:30-10:45 a.m.
Emerging Solutions
These sessions are complimentary and no pre-registration is required. You may select two topics. All topics repeat 11:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

  • CCNE Accreditation Standards Forum: An Update on the Review and Revision Process
    Take advantage of the opportunity to learn about the work of the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education’s (CCNE) Standards Committee, which has been actively engaged in the review and revision of the accreditation standards. Learn the latest information about the timeline. Engage in a conversation and provide feedback about the areas that have been identified for revision.
    Speakers: Debra Davis, PhD, RN, Professor, College of Nursing, University of South Alabama, AL and CCNE Standards Committee Co-Chair; and Jane C. Voglewede, JD, Former Legal Counsel at Sanford Health (MeritCare Health System), Fargo, ND and CCNE Standards Committee Co-Chair
    Moderator: Jennifer Butlin, PhD, RN, Executive Director, Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, Washington, DC

  • Civility Matters! An Evidence-Based Pathway to Foster Healthy Academic Work Environments and Learner Engagements
    This national expert in civility shares her work transforming the academic environment from one of incivility and aggressive behavior to the cultivation of a civil and welcoming workplace. In order for learners to be engaged, they must feel safe to express themselves. The promotion of civility in the student population will play a significant role in fostering civility in the academic, and ultimately, the practice environments.
    Speaker: Cynthia Clark, PhD, RN, Strategic Nursing Advisor for ATI Nursing Education, Leawood, KS
  • Innovations in Online Teaching
    Those that excel in online teaching bring depth to a school of nursing and are on the forefront of educational transformation. The latest innovations in online teaching are presented by an expert in instructional design, skilled in this methodology.
    Speaker: Linda Merillat, PhD, Instructional Design/Lecturer, School of Nursing, Washburn University, Topeka, KS
  • Innovations in Simulation: Virtual Reality
    With the increasing availability of virtual reality technology in its many forms, it is important for nurse educators to have an understanding of how this technology can be incorporated into the curriculum. Types of virtual reality simulation are discussed including theoretical underpinnings and best practice approaches for use. This presentation will move you from curiosity to a comprehension of the value and uses of virtual reality in nursing education.
    Speakers: Sherrill Smith, PhD, RN, Professor, College of Nursing and Health, Wright State University, Dayton, OH; and Sharon L. Farra, PhD, RN, Associate Professor, Co-Director for Curriculum, National Disaster Health Consortium, College of Nursing and Health, Wright State University, Dayton, OH
  • Making a Difference in Student Retention and Success through Program Innovations and Holistic Competence
    Sponsored by AACN’s Faculty Resource Network (formerly ILN)
    This educational program introduces Jeffreys’ Nursing Universal Retention and Success (NURS) model as a framework, along with essential information and easy-to-apply, evidence-based program innovations for enhancing retention and success. The acronym HOLISTIC COMPETENCE is used to describe essential elements for coordinated program implementation: human-connectedness, optimization, learner-centered, individualized, scientifically-based, teamwork, integrated, and creative (HOLISTIC) and: caring, ongoing, multidimensional, proactive, ethics, trust, education, networks, confidence, and evaluation (COMPETENCE).
    Speaker: Marianne R. Jeffreys, EdD, RN, Professor, Graduate College and College of Staten Island, City University of New York (CUNY), New York, NY
    Moderator: Rhonda Elaine Maneval, DEd, Associate Dean, Lienhard School of Nursing, Pace University, Pleasantville, NY

  • Shedding Light on the Complexities of RN-BSN Education: Synthesis and Solutions
    Post-licensure Baccalaureate education is complex, often all online, and programs are increasing rapidly in number. A member of the RN-BSN Education Task Force that published the white paper, “Expectations for Practice Experiences in the RN to Baccalaureate Curriculum” covers some of the nuances of RN-BSN education and offer solutions to challenging problems seen in these programs.
    Speaker: Carole Eldridge, DNP, RN Vice President Post Licensure & Graduate Programs, College of Nursing, Chamberlain University, Downers Grove, IL.

10:45-11:15 a.m.
Good Morning Coffee and Tea Break

11:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Emerging Solutions (repeated)

12:30-2:00 p.m.
Lunch (on your own) 

12:45-1:45 p.m.
Optional Lunch Forum
Bring your lunch and join colleagues in a discussion of “Life after APIN - the National Education Collaborative in Nursing (NEPIN), the Next Chapter”. The Organization for Associate Degree Nursing is working with various groups including the Center to Champion Nursing in America to build on the work of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to improve pathways for education progression to the Baccalaureate degree. Come share your perspective on this very important issue.

2:00-5:00 p.m. (refreshment break from 3:30-4:00 p.m.)
Podium Abstracts
(See separate schedule)
This is AACN’s version of TEDTalks, whereby presenters have 20 (twenty) minutes to get their key points across, the audience has 5 (five) minutes to ask questions, and then the last 5 (five) minutes of each podium presentation are used strictly as a passing period among rooms in order to attend the next session of interest. 

6:30 p.m.
Networking Dinners
A great opportunity for you to connect with other participants while enjoying the local cuisine! Simply choose from our pre-selected restaurants posted near the registration desk and sign-up – it’s just that easy. Participants are responsible for their own tabs and share transportations costs (if any).


8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.      
Registration Desk and Networking Lounge Open

8:00-9:00 a.m.
Light Continental Breakfast

8:00-9:00 a.m.
Faculty Resource Network (formerly ILN) Session
Join colleagues for a celebration of future directions for the network. In addition to seeing old friends and meeting new ones, we will identify issues of mutual interest and future directions for the network in a festive setting. All those responsible for curriculum development with teaching and/or curriculum as their primary responsibility are welcome to attend.
Facilitated by AACN’s Faculty Resource Network (FRN) Steering Committee (formerly known as ILN)

9:00-10:15 a.m.
Plenary Session
Teaching and Learning in a Practice Discipline: Transformative Research-Based Pedagogies

Come hear noted scholar, editor, and international nursing expert Dr. Patricia Benner describe teaching and learning strategies that move beyond the old-fashioned Artificial Intelligence models of the brain and human learning. This new way of thinking will stimulate innovative changes for those open to a new and creative approach to nursing education at the Baccalaureate level.
Speaker: Patricia Benner, PhD, RN, Chief Faculty Development Officer, Educating Nurses, LLC, Knoxville, TN and Professor Emerita, University of California San Francisco, Departments of Physiological Nursing and Social and Behavioral Sciences, San Francisco, CA

10:15-10:45 a.m.
Good Morning Coffee and Tea Break

10:45 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Closing Plenary Session
Disruptive Innovation

The theory of Disruptive Innovation states that organizations can respond more quickly to market forces with a disruptive innovation which is usually simpler, and over time, can sweep off the customer base of those that have embraced sustaining innovations. Dr. Gail Stuart describes how Disruptive Innovative can be used as a positive force for change in Schools of Nursing
Speaker: Gail Stuart, PhD, RN, Dean and Distinguished University Professor, College of Nursing, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC

Registration Fees


  Early Bird
By October 17, 2017
After October 17, 2017
AACN Members $449 $549
Additional Registration(s) from same institution
*Applies to AACN Members only.
$419 $519
AACN Non-Members $599 $699
Full-Time Students* $225 $275

* Full-time graduate students carrying 9 or more credit hours this semester may request a 50% discount. Submit your request together with verification of your full-time student status to

Package pricing

Starting June 1, package pricing available: registration for Baccalaureate Conference and Fall EDS OR Baccalaureate Conference and Faculty Development Conference.

    Early Bird
By October 17, 2017
After October 17, 2017
AACN Members   $848 $1048


Package pricing applies to AACN Members only: If you plan on attending both the Baccalaureate Education Conference and the Fall Executive Development Series OR the Baccalaureate Education Conference and the Faculty Development Conference, a conference package may be purchased (This reflects a $50 discount). Packages must be purchased separately and are not offered during the special discount offer period ending May 31, 2017.

For payment related questions, please contact us at

Substitution, Cancellation, and Refund Policies

If you subsequently cannot attend this event, the following options are available:

1. You may substitute your registration to another individual within your organization. This must be done by contacting the AACN Conference Department via email at

2. If a substitution is not possible, your cancellation request must be received in writing and confirmed by AACN; otherwise, it cannot be honored. The following refund arrangements will then apply:

  • Cancellation requests received by November 1, 2017 will be refunded minus a $150 non-refundable administrative fee.

  • Cancellation requests received after November 1, 2017 will not be granted any refunds.

  • Refunds will not be given for no-shows.

  • No-show registrations with an open balance will be charged a $150 non-refundable administrative fee after the event.

Please note: Cancellations received fewer than 7 days prior to the conference start date will be reviewed and processed within two weeks after the last day of the conference.

AACN reserves the right to cancel this conference and any group activity that does not meet minimal group requirements. AACN assumes no responsibility for non-refundable airline tickets, hotel reservations, car rental, or other travel costs.

Location Information

Atlanta Marriott Marquis
265 Peachtree Center Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30303

Get directions

Continuing Education