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Home : Education / CNE

Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) Proposal Guidelines

At the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), we enjoy working with our authors at each step of the process, and the proposal process is no different.

Whether you’re a first timer or experienced pro, you’ll find the proposal process enlightening. Crystalizing your concept into an outline and conceiving who will buy it is an important step. Additionally, you’ll find much of this work will be used throughout the entire project.

Preparing Proposals
A CNE proposal includes a prospectus and course objectives. All submissions should be double spaced, 12-point type and include headings that support a clear hierarchy. A typical CNE proposal can be as brief as 18 credit hours and as lengthy as 36 credit hours. The projected length is predicated on the number of hours to actually go through the learning activity, divided by 60 minutes.

What do nurses expect from our courses?

  • Relevancy – Our courses are evidence-based and developed by subject matter experts in the field of nursing.
  • Interactivity – Nurses are engaged with case studies, scenarios, quizzes and more.
  • Convenience – Courses are available 24/7 in an asynchronous format, which means nurses learn at their pace. They can return to any course at any time during their subscription period.

Prospectus should include:

  • Working title with any descriptors, subtitle or positioning statement.
  • Name of the authors and any contributors already identified.
  • Brief biographical profiles with credentials, certifications and affiliations of the authors, and/or primary contributors already identified. If the CNE will include contributors, submit their names, credentials, institutional affiliation and position, and the names of lesson(s) each contributor will write. 
  • Description of topic. 
  • Description of how this CNE course uniquely addresses a need in the market.
  • Primary audience – be as specific as possible about the primary audience for your CNE course. How will it be used? To what organizations/individuals would we most effectively market it? Who will buy this CNE product?
  • Will your CNE course incorporate lengthy lessons? Stories from nurses in the field? Short tips and games? Lots of interactive resources?
  • Images – will photos, illustrations, tables or figures be included in the CNE course? If so, approximately how many in each lesson or within the CNE? 
  • How long would you need to write or prepare the online course? 
  • What are the goals for writing this CNE – will it inform, expand, or change current thinking?
  • Competitive works – include titles, authors, price, publisher, and year published. Also include an analysis showing how your CNE course will differ from the competing CNE’s.

Table of Contents

Your table of content outline is the meat of the CNE course. It’s not only how we know what you intend to cover in the course, but it’s also the basis for suggestions, expansions and all future planning on the product. It’s much easier to make structural revisions to the outline than it is to written content. Your proposal should include:

  • Lessons and as many subheads as you can add. 
  • If you don’t have a full sub-head level outline, then supply a detailed description of your vision for the module.

Course Objectives

Course objectives should be submitted as part of the proposal. The course objectives provide an example of what the instructor is trying to teach; what the students are expected to be able to do; how their achievement will be measured; and what will be accepted as evidence that they have achieved their goals.
Review and Submissions

  • All manuscripts submitted to STTI should be original, unpublished material that is not under simultaneous review by another publisher. 
  • If the work or portions of the work are out of print, have been previously published or are portions of another in print work, please note it in your proposal. 
  • Please note your proposal will be submitted for peer review. STTI will request peer reviewers to evaluate the proposal. The identity of the author may be disclosed to reviewers, but the reviewers’ identities will not be known to the author. 
  • Before submitting your proposal, please take a moment to ensure everything on the list above is included.

Submitting a Proposal

Proposals should be submitted electronically. Please click here​ to submit. 

STTI is a global organization committed to providing equal opportunity to all nurse authors worldwide. Please contact us directly should you have questions or comments.

Next Steps

After submission. The education manager and others will review your proposal for content, approach, marketability, and whether or not it fits with STTI’s overall continuing nursing education online products. The education manager may ask you for additional information or to revise a portion of the proposal or outline.

Behind the scenes. After you submit your proposal, please be patient. A number of things are happening at STTI. The education manager is researching the market and sales opportunities for your CNE online course. Based on this information, the education manager may or may not decide to proceed with your idea. If not, the education manager will let you know.

If the education manager chooses to proceed, he/she will prepare a business plan for the CNE online course. This is an internal document based in part on your proposal. The education manager will also prepare financial documents as well as preliminary sales documents.

Next, the education manager schedules an internal product approval meeting with several additional stakeholders at STTI, in essence, a publishing board. After this meeting, the education manager may ask for additional changes and/or information. However, if your CNE online course is approved at this meeting, the education manager may then offer you contract terms for your CNE product. Be aware, this entire process can take between 6 and 10 weeks.

Once approved, the course development process from course author agreement to publishing the course online takes 4-5 months. The first 2-3 months is devoted to content preparation by the course author, depending on the scope and complexity of the topic. During the second two months, the STTI design team prepares the material for the online course format, and interact with the author to ensure that the content is articulated in an engaged and accurate format, since the course content often will be arranged differently than your original material. Congratulations! You’re going to be an author!

Please note: If this is an unsolicited proposal, STTI may have received other proposals on the same topic, idea or concept. They may also already have published a CNE or have a CNE approved or in production on the same topic, idea or concept. If your unsolicited proposal is rejected, STTI still reserves the right to publish on the same topic with another author. They won't, however, use any of your material, samples or outline.

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