Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
OfferedGippsland First semester 2015 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Ms Anita Raymond


Therapeutics plays a significant role in the prevention and management of disease. Nurses and midwives must have a comprehensive knowledge of the actions and effects of medications consumed by patients in their care to provide safe, competent and effective medication administration. Understanding drugs requires a strong foundation of pharmacologic principles to help establish the knowledge-base to underpin safe nursing practice. This unit examines fundamental knowledge and skills to promote the therapeutic application of drugs in the clinical setting and to enhance the ability to provide patient care and education.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Explain drug terminology;
  2. Identify the characteristics and mechanisms of action of significant drug groups and related nursing considerations;
  3. Identify the indicators of adverse drug reactions;
  4. Identify appropriate administration considerations for significant drug groups;
  5. Outline therapeutic responses to drugs and related life span issues;
  6. Identify factors which determine the potency of drug responses;
  7. Review the impact of polypharmacy and develop nursing plans for patient care;
  8. Discuss factors and processes which contribute to medication errors;
  9. Apply nursing assessment principles to drug administration to promote quality patient care;
  10. Develop a clinical pharmacology care plan;
  11. Develop a drug education plan;
  12. Explore the use of complementary and alternative therapies in the health care setting and the implications for nursing care of the patient.


Clinical drug education plan (2,000 words) (25%)
Group assignment (25%)
Exam (2 hours) (50%)

Students must attend 90% of all scheduled laboratories/tutorials - refer to school clinical guidelines for details.

Workload requirements

4 hours per week (lectures, tutorials, labs) x 9 weeks; 1 hour per week on line guided learning x 9 weeks.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


Must be enrolled in Bachelor of Nursing Practice.