Contemporary concerns in nursing education in Canada suggest that the earlier educational pathways have not always represented progress. The persistence of alternate routes for the preparation of registered nurses, and the continuing divisiveness among nurses with differing educational backgrounds are problem areas that still require resolution. Some problems, such as the development of the nursing curriculum, have been shared across educational settings. Nurse educators in Canada, as in other countries, have vested tremendous energy into this aspect of nursing education. In retrospect, it is recognized that much of this effort has been misdirected. Efforts to strengthen the theoretical underpinnings of the curriculum have resulted in the incorporation of borrowed theory from other disciplines, often without critical examination of the context in which the theory developed, or of its consistency with the philosophical perspectives of nursing. Attempts to build curricula around the major nursing models have also met with limited success. Separation of education and practice, persistence of multiple levels of preparation in nursing, and a continual search for viable curriculum models have led to uncertainty, to detours in the development of nursing education, and to occasinal reconsideration of previous approaches.