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Principles of Critical Care Nursing
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This unit of study is designed to provide students with an in depth understanding of the nature of critical illness and the role of a nurse in meeting the needs of patient with life threatening conditions. The unit of study allows the students to acquire advanced clinical knowledge that underpins the provision of expert care for patients in the critical care setting. The students will explore major system alternations and multi-organ failure characteristic of critical illness. Problem solving through critical thinking is emphasised in assessment and prioritising patients’ needs. Best practice guidelines are used to inform nursing interventions in order to optimise health outcomes for patients, families and the community.

Principles of Critical Care Nursing
Unit of study code 281
Availability Graduate Certificate in Critical Care Nursing

GC single unit of study

Pre-requisite 344 – Advanced Applied Pathophysiology (in Clinical Practice)
Credit points 6
Hours of study 150
Fee* Tier 1
Prescribed texts Marieb, E. N., & Hoehn, K. (c2018). Human anatomy and physiology (11th ed. Global ed.). Pearson Education. 9781292261034
Co-ordinated by Maria Baric MACN
Content Intended learning outcomes for this subject/program


After completing this subject, the learner will be able to:-

Assessment Tasks
Type of assessment

Note the completed assessment item (e.g. Assessment 1: Online discussion)


(% of total marks)

When assessed – academic week

(e.g. Week 8)

Theme 1: Respiratory assessment & management in the critically ill adult a) recognise the complexity of critical care practice and the dynamic nature of clinical care strategies Assessment 1: Online discussions x2 10% 1, 8
Theme 2: Cardiac assessment, monitoring and management b) critically analyse findings of mental and physical status to obtain a holistic health assessment related to critically ill people Assessment 2: Quiz (30 questions) 10% 3
Theme 3: Neurological issues in critical care c) develop multidisciplinary care plans which optimise health outcomes for critically ill people Assessment 3: Essay (1,500 words) 30% 5
Theme 4: Metabolic and gastrointestinal issues in the critically ill d) appraise the use of technology and nursing procedures to promote therapeutic interventions in critical care Assessment 4: Guided case analysis (3,000 words) 50% 10
Theme 5: Immunological aspects of critical illness e) evaluate evidence-based practice related to advanced multi system support needed to manage critically ill people
Theme 6: Introduction to shock pathophysiology and management f) critically reflect on own practice in relation to cultural safety and the delivery of equitable, respectful and ethical care
Theme 7: Pain assessment and management in critical care

Principles of Critical Care Nursing (281) is a Tier 1 unit.

Tiers2023 Member price (10% discount)2023 Non-member price2024 Member price (10% discount)2024 Non-member price
Tier 1$2,196.00$2,440.00$2,310.00$2,565.00
Tier 2$2,506.50$2,785.00$2,630.00$2,925.00
Tier 3$2,947.50$3,275.00$3,095.00$3,440.00
Tier 4$3,523.50$3,915.00$3,700.00$4,110.00

*Fees are subject to change without notice.