de Souza Institute de Souza Institute
Categories: Nursing, Interprofessional, Oncology

Foundations of Cancer Disease Sites - Breast Cancer (CDSM00BREASTODM22)

Discover funding options available to you.

This course is an update of the disease sites information in the Foundations of Oncology Nursing Practice (FONP) course, which covered breast, lung, colorectal and prostate cancer. If you have completed Foundations in Oncology Nursing Practice recently, do not take this course unless you wish to review an updated version of the previous disease site content.

In Canada, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women; it is also one of the most complex types of cancer. Today, breast cancer is thought of as a group of diseases, each with different characteristics, prognoses, and responses to therapies. This course will introduce you to breast cancer epidemiology, pathology, screening, diagnosis, and treatment, covering the foundational knowledge you need to provide nursing care to patients with breast cancer and their families. It also will cover the unique subtypes of breast cancer, including triple negative breast cancer. This online course will build on what you learned in Foundations of Oncology Nursing Practice or Cancer Care Basics

Course Objectives 

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Locate the gross anatomical features of the breast, and the major groups of lymph nodes that drain the breast
  • Differentiate between the various histological types of breast cancer and define hormonal receptor status, HER2 status, and triple negative breast cancer.
  • Describe the trends in breast cancer incidence and mortality within Canada.
  • Identify the factors that put someone at higher risk of breast cancer development, including inherited genetic mutations.
  • Explain the Canadian breast cancer screening guidelines for the general population.
  • Recognize the presenting signs and symptoms of breast cancer.
  • Describe the general diagnostic pathway for breast cancer.
  • Explain the TNM staging system for breast cancer.
  • List the factors considered when choosing breast conserving surgery vs. total mastectomy.
  • Explain the goals of neoadjuvant and adjuvant systemic therapy in the treatment of breast cancer, as well as chemotherapy in the metastatic setting.
  • Identify post-treatment considerations for the patient and family after surgery, radiation, and systemic therapy.

Course Syllabus

This course consists of three self-directed eLearning modules and a final quiz.

The final quiz consists of a case study where you will apply your knowledge to the care of a particular patient living with breast cancer. The quiz is open-book and a passing grade is 70%.

Although you can complete the various components of the course at your own pace, the course must be completed within 6 weeks from the time you register for the course.

Download the full Course Syllabus


Available to all regulated health care professionals working along the cancer care continuum.

Payment must be received before you have access to the course. For more information, please visit our Cancellation & No Show Policy.

Participants can pay for this course online with a credit card, or send a cheque to:

de Souza Institute
c/o The Michener Institute of Education
222 St. Patrick Street, Office 503
Toronto, ON   M5T 1V4

You will immediately gain access to the course materials and have 6 weeks* after enrollment to complete all required activities.

*Course Duration
6 weeks
Fee (CAD)
International Fee (CAD)

To enroll in this course:


To purchase multiple courses:

Learning Hours
de Souza Designation Credits
Up to 0.5 credits under Treatment and Delivery of Evidence Based Care:
3 disease sites = Total 0.125 credits
6 disease sites = Total 0.25 credits
9 disease sites = Total 0.325 credits
12 and more disease sites = Total 0.5 credits

Successful completion of either Cancer Care Basics, Foundations in Oncology Nursing Practice or Standardized Chemotherapy and Biotherapy is required to register in this course.