Prevention, Detection, and the Science of Cancer—Oncology RN

Purchasing more than one course? See Group purchasing.


Understanding how cancer develops, cancer pathophysiology, and addressing steps related to prevention and early detection serve as a foundation for your knowledge of cancer care. The Prevention, Detection, and the Science of Cancer online course provides you with the specific information you need for any number of site-specific cancers. This course is designed for oncology nurses with some experience in oncology.

This course is offered on demand. Instructions on how to immediately access the course will be sent to you in an automatically generated email receipt after you register. You will enjoy continuous access for 180 days.

Course Topics

  • Carcinogenesis
  • Immunology
  • Genetics of Cancer
  • ​​Specific Cancer: ​breast, lung, gastrointestinal tract, reproductive system, skin, head and neck, neurologic system, hematologic, bone and soft tissue, HIV-related
  • Research Protocols and Clinical Trials
  • Health Promotion, Prevention, and Detection: cancer epidemiology, cancer prevention, cancer detection

This course is included in the OCN® Certification Review Bundle. It is a recommended course if you are studying for your certification exam or are renewing your certification via the ILNA option. You may take this course on its own or purchase the bundle of four courses plus a practice test at a discounted rate. 

OCN® Certification Review Bundle

Expected Outcomes

Upon completion of this activity, the learner will demonstrate knowledge of prevention, detection, and the science of cancer by achieving a post test score of 80% or higher.

Target Audience

This course is appropriate for oncology nurses who wish to increase their knowledge of the science of cancer and cancer screening and prevention criteria specific to effective oncology nursing practice. The course is also appropriate for those who are preparing for oncology nursing certification examination and renewal via Individual Learning Needs Assessment (ILNA) renewal points.

ILNA Breakdown

Content in this learning activity is applicable to meeting individual requirements for certification renewal through the Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation's Individual Learning Needs Assessment (ILNA) renewal method.

Up to 6.63 ILNA points may be applied to Scientific Basis for Practice. Up to 4.42 ILNA points may be applied to Coordination of Care OR Disease-Related Biology OR Health Promotion/Screening and Early Detection OR Professional Practice. Up to 2.21 ILNA points may be applied to Treatment OR Basic Concepts for Transplantation.

No more than 11.05 total points may be claimed for the program.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the fundamentals of carcinogenesis and science including the roles of the immune system and genetics in cancer development.
  • Identify characteristics of common cancers including risk factors, prevention, detection, signs and symptoms, diagnosis and staging, and treatment.
  • Identify the nurse’s role and responsibility in the clinical trial process.
  • Identify the role of the oncology nurse in health promotion and prevention activities in people with cancer.
  • Identify the nursing responsibilities associated with screening and early detection for patients with cancer.

Technical Requirements

For optimal performance, and to fully participate in ONS online courses, it will be necessary to use one of the browsers listed below.

Supported Browsers for Desktop or Laptop Computers*:

*Use of an earlier version will prohibit the ability to post discussions or view some materials within the course properly.

After upgrading to one of these supported browser versions, please ensure your computer is set up to support the following additional requirements before beginning the lessons.

Additional Requirements**:

**If you're using a work computer for your course, the installation of these components may require assistance from the IT department at your place of business.

ONS Courses

Earn valuable CNE, and stay on the forefront of oncology nursing.

View All Courses