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Clinical Career Ladder

Welcome to the guide for the University of Virginia Health System's Professional Nursing Staff Organization Clinical Career Ladder. The Ladder was initiated at UVA in 1988 and is based on Patricia Benner's work From Novice to Expert published in 1984. The Ladder continues to evolve based on nursing feedback and the needs of the organization. The decision to pursue advancement beyond the entry level is an individual choice based on interest in professional development, increased responsibility and accountability. Click the links below for more detailed information about UVAHS's Clinical Career Ladder.




Find Career information for 2017 in:

The full Clinical Career Ladder Reference Handbook (47 page PDF, web & printer-friendly version)

Clinician Behaviors
- Clinical Career Ladder Behaviors Clinician I to Clinician IV

Clinical Career Ladder Behaviors APN 1 to APN 3

* Effective 7/1/2017, revised Behaviors for Clinician I-IV and Wage RNs


Notice of Intent

Now web-based:  Notice of Intent to Advance form

Portfolio Submission

  • Now web-based: Career Ladder Portfolio Submission form 
    for Advancement, for Clinician 2, Clinician 3, and APN positions.
    Use this form to submit your materials, and check on progress updates from the Panelists regarding
    your interview status and decision letters!
    - After posting each file, click its link to be sure it opens! For example, don't use certain characters in the filename (such as #) as doing so 'breaks' the link!
  • Hardcopy submission is still requested in these circumstances:
    - Submit just a hardcopy CV and applicable Checklist (not a full portfolio) to your Manager (not to the PNSO Office),
    if you are...
    - Clinician 1 advancing to Clinician 2 | checklist
    - externally hired Clinician 2 validating post-hire | checklist


Checklists are no longer required if applying for advancement to Clinician 3, Clinician 4, APN 2, or APN 3.  Completion of the submission tool (link above) counts as the checklist.  The only two checklists still required are for the processes that are conducted at the local level:






(tip: if a "SSL / Secure Sockets Layer" popup appears, just click NO, and the document opens fine)


List of Potential Mentors (Updated for 2016)
- Examples of Portfolio Development Materials

- APNs' & Administrators' Toolkit for Advanced Practice ladder
- Orientation resources for New APNs
- APN Outcomes editable template | process overview & examples

- APN Panel members (2016)

Managers' Toolkit
- Administrators' & APNs' Toolkit for Advanced Practice ladder

Contact the PNSO with questions!

Thanks for Visiting!

Welcome to the Professional Nursing Staff Organization! All Registered Nurses employed by the UVA Health System's Medical Center, School of Nursing and School of Medicine are members of our Professional Nursing Staff Organization (PNSO). Please provide us feedback!

Be a UVA Nurse!


PNSO Clinical Career Ladder changes!

Check here for links and resources to information on the coming Clinical Career Ladder changes!

(Link) Main web page for Ladder changes




IMPORTANT Career Ladder Dates

03/15/2017 - DEADLINE to Submit Notice of Intent to Advance

04/03/2017 - DEADLINE to Submit portfolio for Spring Advancement

04/25/2017 - INTERVIEWS

05/01/2017 - INTERVIEWS

05/03/2017 - INTERVIEWS

05/31/2017 - Final Decision notification to candidates

06/04/2017 - Effective date for new position for successful advances

06/23/2017 - Paycheck that will have any compensation adjustment for successful advancees

09/15/2017 - DEADLINE to Submit Notice of Intent for Advancement

10/02/2017 - DEADLINE to Submit portfolio for Fall Advancement

10/30/2017 - INTERVIEWS

11/07/2017 - INTERVIEWS

11/30/2017 - Final Decision notifications to candidates

12/03/2017 - Effective date for new position for successful advances

12/22/2017 - Paycheck that will have any compensation adjustment for successful advancees