College of Nursing

Clinical Placements

Professional Appearance for Clinical Practice

This policy provides guidance in presenting a professional image in the clinical practice setting. Students who are not displaying a professional image may be asked to leave clinical. In this case, the time away will be considered under the missed Clinical Practice Policy. Considerations may be made for individual dress that is specific to cultural or religious beliefs. This policy is based on principles of professionalism, infection control, personal safety and role identification.


Principle: To enhance professionalism by presenting a professional image.

Appearance is a form of non-verbal communication and is essential in projecting a professional image. Therefore, in the clinical settings students are required:

  • to wear a College of Nursing standard uniform unless otherwise specified. Uniforms must be clean and neat and pants should be hemmed above the heel line. Uniforms are not to be worn to and from the clinical setting. The College of Nursing uniform consists of a white top/jacket and a green pant with the College of Nursing logo embroidered directly on the front upper left of the top/jacket. Read more information about uniforms here.
  • where the standard College of Nursing uniform is not required, it is expected students will continue to display a professional image while following the specific dress requirements of the agency
  • in settings where the standard uniform is not worn, students should demonstrate good judgment in selecting appropriate size of clothing. Clothing should not be low cut at the neck or tight across the chest and hips. Ensure there is no exposure of the chest, midriff, lower back or shoulders. Undergarments should not be visible at any time. Avoid casual clothing, such as sweat shirts as over garments, yoga pants or jeans.
  • to wear a College of Nursing photo ID badge at chest level at all times
  • to cover tattoos
  • to use good judgment in wearing an appropriate quantity of make-up
  • to refrain from using scented products

Note: A jacket is not mandatory. If students choose to wear a jacket, it must be the standard College of Nursing crested jacket, which can be purchased at the same location as your uniform.

Infection Control

Principle: To prevent the spread of infection.


  • must be conservative, clean and well groomed. Long hair must be tied up and away from the face
  • beards and moustaches must be clean, trimmed, well groomed and short


  • short and clean
  • no nail polish
  • no artificial nails


  • minimal jewelry to allow for good hand washing technique (e.g. gold band only)


  • in agencies where uniform is required, the standard College of Nursing uniform is worn


  • footwear used in the clinical setting is not to be worn outside of the clinical setting

Personal Safety

Principle: To maintain personal safety while in the clinical setting.


  • in accordance to the Occupational Health and Safety standards, shoes must be closed toes and closed heel with a non-slip sole and low heel
  • must be clean and in good repair
  • must be made of an impermeable (water-proof) material


  • earrings must be small studs in any visible piercing, no dangling earrings or hoops
  • no necklace or bracelets


  • when not being used, stethoscopes must be kept in your pocket

Role Identification

Principle: To promote communication of students or faculty role by clearly identifying name and position.


  • students are required to wear a College of Nursing photo ID badge at chest level at all times
  • photo ID is also necessary for liability purposes

We wish to specifically acknowledge and thank the University of British Columbia for the work they have done and shared with the College of Nursing, University of Saskatchewan in regards to clinical appearance.