NUR5003 - Contemporary nursing practice 3 - 2017

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 Michael Olasoji

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Day)
  • Second semester 2017 (Day)


This unit builds upon NUR5002 Contemporary Nursing Practice 2. It is a clinically-based unit that introduces students to the areas of mental health and aged care nursing as well as preparing them for graduate nursing roles. The unit will provide opportunities for students to develop fundamental knowledge, skills and attitudes relevant to the restoration and maintenance of optimal mental health and recovery from mental illness. Students are expected to learn to assess mental health problems and to identify the coping abilities of individuals and families, and to care for people with selected mental disorders. Emphasis is placed upon empowerment of the individual and caregiver using the stress/vulnerability model and family based management. The unit also encompasses risk assessment, mental health service systems, roles and functions of the multidisciplinary mental health team, and the Victorian Mental Health Act.


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

  1. Analyse the concepts of mental health and mental illness with reference to historical and contemporary classification systems.
  2. Explain the implications of the Victorian Mental Health Act (2014) for nursing practice in line with recovery oriented practice.
  3. Communicate effectively with people who are experiencing disturbances of thoughts, feelings and behaviour and accurately conduct a mental status assessment and a risk assessment to help inform patient care.
  4. Critically analyse the roles and functions of the members of the multidisciplinary mental health team and how the roles work to ensure patients are treated appropriately.
  5. Evaluate a range of mental disorders in the context of aetiological factors, epidemiology, and clinical manifestations and recommend appropriate mental health nursing care.
  6. Compare and contrast a range of psychotherapeutic interventions and therapeutic modalities utilised in mental health treatment and care.
  7. Explore the impact of ageing and chronic and life-limiting illness on clients, families and carers including the perspectives of challenges to autonomy, protection of patients, and quality of life in order to provide optimal, holistic nursing care.
  8. Discriminate between health assessment, health promotion, supportive and palliative approaches for people with chronic and life limiting illness to provide appropriate evidence based nursing interventions.
  9. Critically examine how the different roles of members in interprofessional teams, work together to provide expert care for people with chronic and/or life limiting illness in different health care environments.
  10. Practise at a beginning level in mental health and community health settings in accordance with NMBA Registered Nurse standards for practice and other professional standards


Clinical placement: 200 hours.


  • Written assignment (2500 words) (20%)
  • Exam (2 hours) (40%) (hurdle)
  • Clinical performance (200 hours) (40%)
  • Must complete clinical placement (200 hours)

Hurdle requirements: Students must pass the end of semester examination to achieve a pass for this unit. Students must achieve a pass in the clinical placement to pass the unit (100%). Attendance at clinical is mandatory.

Workload requirements

8 hours a week: lectures 6 hours, tutorials 2 hours over eight weeks. In addition, students will be required to undertake 200 hours of clinical placement.

Note: Students who complete this unit in the summer semester will be on campus for 5.5 weeks intensive.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

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


Nursing and midwifery