Critical Enquiry in Adult Palliative Care

Subject NURS90047 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2015:

July, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 15-Jul-2015 to 18-Sep-2015
Assessment Period End 09-Nov-2015
Last date to Self-Enrol 28-Jul-2015
Census Date 07-Aug-2015
Last date to Withdraw without fail 02-Oct-2015

A combination of face to face and online delivery, with a strong clinical focus. A delivery format of four four-day subjects offered intensively in two day blocks throughout the year has been established to enable accessibility for regional and interstate health professionals.

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 20 hours of lectures/seminars/workshops
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours per 12.5 credit point subject


To enrol in this subject, you must be admitted in either the Specialist Certificate in Palliative Care (GC-PALLC) or Graduate Certificate in Palliative Care (GC-PALCARE). This subject is not available for students admitted in any other courses.

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering requests for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Commonwealth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this course are articulated in the Course Overview, Objectives and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this course are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and the Disability Liaison Unit:


Ms Karen Quinn


School of Melbourne Custom Programs
Award Programs Team

Program Coordinator - Gemma Hughes

Phone - +61 3 9810 3253


Subject Overview:

Students must complete 4 of the following 5 days in order to complete the subject.

  • Day 1 – Evidence Based Palliative Care (compulsory for all students).
  • Day 2 - Symptom Management and technical aspects of palliative care (compulsory for doctors and nurses)
  • Day 3 – Palliative care in non-cancer context
  • Day 4 - Psychosocial, spiritual and ethico-legal aspects of palliative care
  • Day 5 - Family centred palliative care
Learning Outcomes:

Students who successfully complete this subject will have:

  • Critically appraise literature relevant to course content
  • Discuss the fundamentals of research in palliative care and evaluation techniques implemented
  • Explore the principles of evidence based practice
  • Identify symptoms often experienced by patients during the palliative phase of an illness
  • Explore current evidence based strategies for complex symptom management
  • Discuss models of grief and bereavement care , and be able to describe risk factors for prolonged grief
  • Identify relevant legislation that guides palliative care practice in Australia
  • Explore the concept of spiritual care in the context of palliative care provision
  • Identify diseases other than cancer likely to benefit from a palliative approach
  • Recognise challenges of providing palliative care for patients with non malignant diseases
  • Discuss the impact of the caring role for a family caregiver
  • Be aware of interventions to benefit families providing care to palliative care patients
  • Identify opportunities for own learning needs
  • 30% 1 x 2000 word assignment
  • 50% clinical portfolio (set of self directed clinically focused learning activities assessed by a clinical mentor) Note: for doctors and nurses there will be a focus on symptom management and technical skills.
  • 20% critical review of the literature relevant to course content

Prescribed Texts:

Therapeutic Guidelines: Palliative Care. Version 2. (2005).

Recommended Texts:

As part of their course materials students will be provided with articles and references that support the subject content.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Links to further information:
Related Course(s): Graduate Certificate in Palliative Care
Specialist Certificate in Palliative Care

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