1 Year Part-time
January & July
According to Drug and Alcohol Nurses of Australasia (DANA), “the specialist drug and alcohol nurse is required to provide specialised leadership, expert knowledge and nursing skills to assess, identify and respond to complex problems of individuals and families affected by drug and alcohol related health conditions, including dependence and mental and/or physical health comorbidities.”
Studying drug and alcohol nursing with ACN provides the knowledge and skills for the provision and coordination of patient centred care in this growing specialty. The aim is to encourage professional and ethical understanding of clinical practice development for the improvement of patient outcomes. Our course is written by specialist nurses, for nurses and students are supported by a team of clinical experts, working within the speciality.
The aim of this course is to encourage professional and ethical understanding of evidence based clinical practice development in drug and alcohol nursing. It will provide students with an understanding of substance use issues from both an individual and public health perspective. The course covers assessment, treatment and nursing care of clients experiencing drug and alcohol dependence.
The course aims to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to improve patient outcomes through the coordination and provision of patient centred care in this growing speciality.
Students complete 4 core units of study.
A Graduate Certificate in Drug and Alcohol Nursing is an investment in your future and will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to ensure better outcomes for your patients and progress your career, leading to opportunities in clinical education, management and specialist nursing roles.
At successful completion of the course students should be able to:
- apply critical thinking/clinical reasoning skills to the assessment of the drug and alcohol patient, linking specialist theory to holistic clinical practice
- demonstrate specialist knowledge in the use of pharmacotherapies and psychosocial interventions for the treatment of clients in the context of drug and alcohol nursing practice
- critically examine to apply current evidence-based research, including government policy and strategy, to enhance clinical decision-making skills and care planning in the context of drug and alcohol nursing practice
- develop advanced communication skills in order to establish therapeutic relationships with patients, families and the multidisciplinary team to promote a holistic approach to drug and alcohol nursing care
- develop leadership, mentoring and educational skills to contribute to high standard drug and alcohol nursing practice, and facilitate quality improvement in this area
- critically reflect on the role of personal values and ethics as central to the development of culturally safe practice in drug and alcohol nursing practice.
Maximise your qualification
Once you’ve completed the Graduate Certificate in Drug and Alcohol Nursing, you could be one year of study* from an online Master of Nursing with University of Canberra (UC). Develop advanced knowledge and skills in leadership, management, research, health-care improvement and evidence-based practice. Gain 12 credit points from your previous studies with ACN towards UC’s Master of Nursing, with only one year of study* needed to complete your degree. Study at your own pace with a degree that’s entirely online and convenient for you.
ACN graduates may be eligible for advanced standing in Master Programs of other universities.
*Based on a fulltime study load.
The Graduate Certificate in Drug and Alcohol Nursing is a one year course, consisting of four 10-week terms.
Students will need to complete 4 core units. One unit is studied per term.
Approximate hours of study are 12 – 15 hours per week.
Units of study
|Unit type||Unit name & pricing||
|Term 1 - Core||Foundational Concepts in Drug and Alcohol Nursing (324), Tier 1|
|Term 2 - Core||Leadership and Professional Practice (925), Tier 2|
|Term 3 - Core||Clinical Approaches in Drug and Alcohol Nursing (326)*, Tier 1|
|Term 4 - Core||Public and Primary Health Care: Drug and Alcohol (287), Tier 1|
|*324 is a pre-requisite and must be completed first.|
ACN offers two intakes per year in January and July. Important dates including start and census dates can be found here.
Flexible intakes in April and October may be available, please contact our Customer Services team for further details.
|Tiers||2020 Member price (10% discount)||2020 Non-member price||2021 Member price (10% discount)||2021 Non-member price|
Fees are subject to change without notice.
ACN offers a flexible payment option allowing students to pay their fees on a term-by-term basis. Each term’s fees are due upfront, prior to term commencement.
FEE-HELP is also available for eligible students. Further information can be found here.
Want to save on course fees?
Being a part of the ACN community allows nurses to be the best they can be and strengthen the voice of nursing through a range of invaluable benefits, including 10% off graduate certificates and other education offerings, exclusive networking events, access to support and advice on ACN’s online engagement platform neo, free online CPD courses and opportunities to be involved in shaping health care policy. Find out more and join our tribe today!
Applicants for the Graduate Certificate in Drug and Alcohol Nursing must have at least one years’ work experience in drug and alcohol nursing or a related field.
In addition, applicants must satisfy any pre-requisites or additional requirements specified for particular courses, including ACN’s general eligibility criteria. All applicants seeking admission are required to:
- hold a Bachelor of Nursing or registered nurse* equivalent qualification
- be currently registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) or the equivalent registering authority in your country of origin
- have a minimum of one year postgraduate experience
- be currently employed in an appropriate clinical setting.
*For some GC units of study, consideration may be given for applicants who are not registered nurses on an individual basis.
Ruth Green MACN, Nurse Educator – Higher Education
RN, MN (Clin Teach), Grad Cert (Clin Teach), Cert Orthopaedic Nursing (NSWCN), Cert IV TAE, Cert IV WHS
Ruth coordinates both our Graduate Certificates in Drug and Alcohol Nursing and Orthopaedic Nursing.
Ruth has been nursing for over 30 years, mainly in orthopaedics and education, where her passion lies.
Ruth is passionate about lifelong learning and sees education as a key component to ensuring quality nursing care, improved patient outcomes and nurse satisfaction.
Please ensure you read all course information and make sure you meet entry requirements prior to commencing the application form.
Applications for enrolment will not be progressed until all relevant documentation has been received by Customer Services.
Application form will open in a new window. Your privacy is very important to us. To better serve you, the form information you enter is recorded in real time.