Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 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.

Monash University

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

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


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Nursing and Midwifery


Dr Sue Aberdeen



  • First semester 2016 (Online)


The aim of this unit is to prepare nurses to critique and improve their own, and their team's, support and care for older persons. It will equip the student to promote healthy ageing and to lead their team in responding to the needs of aged persons in whatever adult care context the nurse may choose to work. The impact of historical and current socio-political factors that influence the way in which we age and how we provide care will be analysed. The body of gerontic and geriatric knowledge will be studied in order to provide an evidence-based foundation for person-centred assessments, care provision and evaluations of care outcomes for older persons with multiple comorbidities.


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

  1. Describe the components of a comprehensive health assessment for the older person;
  2. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the effects of age-related changes on the structure and function of selected body systems and the implications for health assessment;
  3. Evaluate different biological and psychosocial perspectives on ageing;
  4. Analyse recent and current models of care for acute, rehabilitation, aged care and palliative care nursing that enhance the quality of life and quality of care of older clients;
  5. Discuss the palliative care needs and services for the older people in the context of their family, caregivers and home environment;
  6. Discuss the social construction of ageing, sexuality, spirituality, environments for living and the quality of life of older people and health care;
  7. Critically discuss the impact of sociocultural attitudes, demographic factors, political pressures and economic constraints on the older person and nursing practice, in local and international contexts;
  8. Explore the achievements in health and aged care policy and the social and economic progress that has influenced nurse practice and service delivery in aged care; and
  9. Critically reflect on current and future gerontological nursing practice and the role of the nurse in contemporary health care service delivery.


Exam (40%)
2 x Written assignments (30% each)

Chief examiner(s)

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