Aged Care Transition to Practice Program
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12 months

Study mode



October 2023
November 2023
February 2024


No fee to the individual as funded by the Australian Government Department of Health

The Aged Care Transition to Practice program (ACTTP) aims to increase the availability of nurses (ENs and RNs) with experience and training in aged care. The partnership created between the Australian College of Nursing (ACN) and the Aged Care Provider will foster cultural change, improve health outcomes, and enhance the quality of life of older people living in your facilities.

Course overview

The ACTTP aims to develop the fundamental knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential to provide holistic and evidence-based care to older people. The program also aims to encourage the legal and ethical understanding of the relevant clinical practice and support nurse graduates in developing their role as autonomous members of the multidisciplinary team and professional leaders within aged care homes. The program is designed to support recommendations from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety and is flexible to adapt to emerging evidence-based practice.

  • Access to skilled aged-care nurse educator who possess a wide variety of specialised skills and expertise.
  • Access to an online course and discussion forums 24/7.
  • Nine study days equivalent to 95 CPD hours. The days are spread over 12 months to allow flexible learning.
  • Access to 9 self-paced CPD modules exclusively designed for aged care.
  • Access to updated course material, online quizzes, online discussion forums (to promote professional communication, collaboration and peer networking which is essential for all aged-care environments), resources and references to websites.
  • Real-life case scenarios to analyse, discuss and examine the current practice.
  • Last day: Consolidation of the program by presenting a portfolio.

Career outcomes

The ACTTP enables you to attract, develop and retain new graduates to the sector. The program is designed to empower recent nurse graduates to become the clinical and professional leaders required for the aged care reform agenda announced in the 2021/2022 Federal Budget in response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.

At successful completion of the course students should be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and skills for the provision and coordination of evidenced-based person-centred nursing care for older people.
  • apply clinical practice development for the improvement of health outcomes.
  • integrate specialist knowledge, assessment skills and information to support an improved standard of care for older people.
  • develop enhanced clinical decision-making skills using multiple modes of enquiry and collaborative approaches.
  • maintain effective therapeutic relationships with older adults, their support network, professional colleagues and other stakeholders.

The Aged Care Transition to Practice is a 12-month course, consisting of 9 study days.

Approximate hours of study are 95 hours.

 Synchronous content  Self-paced ACN CPD modules over 12 months
Day one: Introductory session

  • Introduction and Orientation to the program (Purpose, defining goals and expectations)
  • Introduction and Orientation to ACN LMS, how to access ACN library
  • Clinical Leadership: Being a clinical leader in aged care
  • Responsibilities of approved aged care providers
  • Governance, mandatory registration standards, portfolio development
  1. Foundational aspects of leadership (Mentor)
  2. Professional issues
  3. Introduction to Clinical mentoring, preceptorship & coaching (Mentor)
  4. Mental health
  5. Wound management
  6. Pain management
  7. Reduction of Unnecessary Transfers to Hospitals (RUTH)
  8. Serious Incident Reporting Scheme (SIRS)
  9. Infection prevention and control
 Day two: Infection prevention & control day

  • Health Care Associated Infections
  • Multi Resistant Organisms
  • Choose wisely, Antibiotic Resistance and Stewardship
  • Reportable infections
  • Outbreak Management
  • Group work: Case studies and PPE Activity
 Day three: Clinical care day 1

  • Medication management
  • High Risk medications
  • Polypharmacy
  • Psychotropics
  • Falls management and prevention
  • Restrictive practices in aged care
  • Group work: Case studies and quiz
 Day four: Behaviour support day

  • Dementia, Delirium and Depression
  • Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD)
  • Therapeutic approaches to Behaviour management
  • Communication in Dementia
  • Group activities
 Day five: Professional issues

  • How to lead in practice
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Compassion Fatigue and Burnout
  • Self-care and resilience
  • Clinical handover
  • Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS)
 Day six: Clinical care day – 2

  • Most prevalent chronic conditions in older people
  • Acute Deterioration/Clinical Assessment (Nurse graduates are required to complete a practical component at the workplace)
  • Assessing the needs on return from the hospital.
  • Malnutrition in older adults
  • Oral Health Care
 Day seven: Quality of life and diversity in aged care homes

  • Quality of Life in Aged care homes
  • Sexuality and Intimacy in older adults
  • Diverse Population Groups (Aboriginal Torres Strait and Islander peoples, Lesbian, gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer, Culturally and linguistically older adults).
  • Conflict management
  • Case studies
 Day eight: Palliative care day

  • Transition to Palliative care (symptom management and decision making)
  • Transition to End-of-life care (symptom management and decision making)
  • Role of Multidisciplinary team: Group discussions
  • Palliative care emergencies and Decision Making
  • Case Studies
 Day nine: Consolidation of the program & Graduation

  • Portfolio presentations
  • ACN Certificates of completion

Nurses must have completed their university graduate degree or graduate degree in the last two years.

Diva Madan

Diva Madan, Nurse Educator – Higher Education
RN, MN clinical education, BN, BSc, DN, Cert IV TAE and ANI

Diva coordinates the Graduate Certificate in Aged Care Nursing and Aged Care Transition to Practice Program. Diva has also coordinated the Graduate Certificate in Breast Cancer and Cancer Nursing. Diva has over 16 years of experience in geriatric health, infection prevention and control and palliative care. Diva is passionate about improving nursing care in Aged Care Homes. Diva has an extensive background in mentoring Aged Care Nurses. Diva enjoys going beyond the essential elements of the curriculum, preparing nurses to be creative, curious, critical thinkers and leaders essential for providing evidence-based holistic care to older people across all settings.

Frequently asked questions

For students

Your workplace needs to have an agreement with ACN to allocate places in the program. Please speak to your employer and ask them if they would like to participate.

To be eligible through your employer, participants in the program can be from the following streams:

  • newly graduated RN’s with under 2 years-experience and have not previously completed a transition to practice program
  • newly graduated EN’s with under 2 years-experience and have not previously completed a transition to practice program
  • transitioning registered nurses not in their first year of clinical practice overall but in their first year of clinical practice in aged care.

The course runs over 12 months.

You will access to ACN’s dedicated aged-care educator and will be supported in the workplace by a mentor (allocated by your employer).

Yes, you have 9 study days throughout the year which you attend as study leave.

The program is offered by blended learning with a combination of self-paced asynchronous online sessions and synchronous sessions which are being offered via teleconference. There are 9 synchronous full day sessions covering all the topics you need to become a leader in aged-care practice. You and your mentor will also have access to nine aged-care specific online modules. You will be able to log into our learning management system where you can access all the material and communicate with your coordinator and others in the course. Throughout the course you will be developing your professional portfolio which is presented on the last day as you reflect on the course and plan your next step in lifelong learning.

The ACTTP program is designed specifically for nurses in the aged care sector.

ACNs other Transition to Practice program is different in the following ways:

  • ACN does not receive funding from the Australian Government Department of Health to deliver this program
  • the program is generic and not specific to the aged care sector
  • ACN has a relationship with the student only

For providers

Please contact Judith Smith, Director of Professional Development via email

There is more information available in our flyer.

Please view our website for more information.

  • The aged care provider must provide allocated time so the student can attend the ACTTP program.
  • A mentor is allocated by their employer to support the student in the workplace.
  • The aged care provider must be approved by the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission under the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission Act 2018to provide services under the Aged Care Act 1997 (Cth).
  • The aged care provider must adhere to the National Employment Standards (NES). If the employers of registered nurse participants in the program are found to be violating the NES, this agreement may be terminated by ACN without prior notice.
  • The aged care provider can only enrol participants into the program who are newly graduated nurses (up to two years post-graduation) in their first year of clinical practice who have not previously participated in a transition to practice program (however named).
  • The aged care provider must assign senior nurse mentors to graduates and be willing to provide time to their nurse graduates and mentors to engage with the program.

Mentors will have access to four hours of education over the 12 months. They will also have access to the learning management system and support from the course coordinator.

More info for aged care providers

Contact us

Diva Madan
Nurse Educator – Higher Education

t: 1800 061 660

Judith Smith
Director of Professional Development

t: 1800 061 660