Course Outline

NUR241 Contexts of Practice: Health Alteration

Course Coordinator:Anthony Summers ( School:School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine

2022Semester 1

USC Sunshine Coast

USC Moreton Bay

USC Caboolture

USC Fraser Coast

USC Gympie

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Please go to the USC website for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?


In this course, you investigate health alteration. You learn about the pathophysiological processes that contribute to a range of disorders. You examine the principles of treatment and care which support adaptation and recovery. This knowledge will inform your preparation for practice and help you to assess, plan and select therapeutic interventions. You will work with your colleagues to examine principles of social justice, as well as professional and ethical standards, and critique factors which may impact on the access to care and the care a person experiencing health alteration may receive.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Learning materials – Online asynchronous learning and teaching recording. 1hr Week 1 9 times
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – On campus tutorial 3hrs Week 1 9 times

Course Topics

9-week schedule:

Respiratory dysfunction and pathophysiology

Cardiovascular dysfunction and pathophysiology

Gastrointestinal dysfunction and pathophysiology

Renal dysfunction and pathophysiology 

Central Nervous System (CNS) dysfunction and pathophysiology

Endocrine dysfunction, assessment and diabetes mellitus management

Musculoskeletal dysfunction and pathophysiology

Infection and inflammation

Admission and discharge, and the social justice framework

What level is this course?

200 Level (Developing)

Building on and expanding the scope of introductory knowledge and skills, developing breadth or depth and applying knowledge and skills in a new context. May require pre-requisites where discipline specific introductory knowledge or skills is necessary. Normally, undertaken in the second or third full-time year of an undergraduate programs.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Mapping Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming... Professional Standard Mapping * Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
1 Apply a cogent body of core knowledge that relates to the pathophysiological processes that contribute to a range of disorders and the principles of treatment and care which support adaptation and recovery. Knowledgeable
4.2, 5.1, 5.3, 6.1
2 Use evidence to inform the principles of treatment and care which support decision-making and responsive practice to adaptation and recovery in medical and surgical settings. Creative and critical thinker
1.1, 4.2, 5.1
3 Encourage individual and group access to, and participation in, healthcare through the use of a social justice framework. Empowered
1.3, 2.2, 3.7, 4.3, 6.6
4 Apply professional, frameworks ethical and legal codes and standards to decision making as you assess plan and select therapeutic interventions. Ethical
1.4, 1.5, 6.2, 6.5
5 Critically appraise how nursing practice can influence the delivery of healthcare for people experiencing and adapting to health alterations. Creative and critical thinker
1.1, 2.6, 2.7, 2.9, 6, 6.4, 6.5

* Competencies by Professional Body

Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
1.1 The RN accesses, analyses, and uses the best available evidence, that includes research findings for safe quality practice
1.3 The RN 1.3 respects all cultures and experiences, which includes responding to the role of family and community that underpin the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and people of other cultures
1.4 The RN complies with legislation, common law, policies, guidelines and other standards or requirements relevant to the context of practice when making decisions
1.5 The RN uses ethical frameworks when making decisions
2.2 The RN communicates effectively, and is respectful of a person’s dignity, culture, values, beliefs and rights
2.6 The RN uses delegation, supervision, coordination, consultation and referrals in professional relationships to achieve improved health outcomes
2.7 The RN actively fosters a culture of safety and learning that includes engaging with health professionals and others, to share knowledge and practice that supports person-centred care
2.9 The RN reports notifiable conduct of health professionals, health workers and others.
3.7 The RN identifies and promotes the integral role of nursing practice and the profession in influencing better health outcomes for people
4.2 The RN uses a range of assessment techniques to systematically collect relevant and accurate information and data to inform practice
4.3 The RN works in partnership to determine factors that affect, or potentially affect, the health and well being of people and populations to determine priorities for action and/or for referral
5.1 The RN uses assessment data and best available evidence to develop a plan
5.3 The RN documents, evaluates and modifies plans accordingly to facilitate the agreed outcomes
6 Standard 6: Provides safe, appropriate and responsive quality nursing practice
6.1 The RN provides comprehensive safe, quality practice to achieve agreed goals and outcomes that are responsive to the nursing needs of people
6.2 The RN practises within their scope of practice
6.4 The RN provides effective timely direction and supervision to ensure that delegated practice is safe and correct
6.5 The RN practises in accordance with relevant nursing and health guidelines, standards, regulations and legislation
6.6 The RN uses the appropriate processes to identify and report potential and actual risk related system issues and where practice may be below the expected standards

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the USC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.


NUR141 or NUR116 or HLT132 and LFS103 or HLT100 and enrolled in Program SC391, SC392, SC393


Not applicable


Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

Formative feedback will be in the form of H5P lectures with interactive quiz questions and in-class quizzes.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Case Study Individual 50%
2,000 words
Week 5 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 2 Artefact - Creative, and Written Piece Individual 50%
2,000 words
Week 10 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All - Assessment Task 1:Case study
The goal of this case study is for you to apply knowledge of pathophysiology processes of disease to the assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation of care using the nursing process. You also critically appraise the professional standards that influence health care delivery.
Product: Case Study
Written piece
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Application of pathophysiology processes to the patient's condition.
Ability to synthesise literature in support of decision-making
Application of the nursing process
Appraising professional standards for practice that influence health care delivery
All - Assessment Task 2:Information leaflet
The goal of the information leaflet is to apply knowledge of pathophysiology processes of disease and evidence-based literature to the health promotion, ambulatory and home care information you provide as a nurse or midwife to promote adaptation and recovery in medical and surgical settings. You also apply the Code of Ethics and social justice framework to your professional role and responsibilities.
Product: Artefact - Creative, and Written Piece
Written piece
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Application of pathophysiology  processes to the health promotion, ambulatory and home care needs of individuals.
Synthesis of literature in support of health promotion, ambulatory and home care information provided.
Integration of social justice principles relevant to the disease process to enhance access and participation in health care.
Application of the Code of Ethics to the nursing and midwifery role and responsibilities in health promotion.

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Directed study hours may vary by location. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

Please note that you need to have regular access to the resource(s) listed below. Resources may be required or recommended.

Required? Author Year Title Edition Publisher
Required Diane Brown,Helen Edwards,Thomas Buckley,Robyn L. Aitken 2020 Lewis's Medical-Surgical Nursing 5 n/a
Recommended Judy Craft,Christopher Gordon,Sue Huether,Kathryn L McCance,Valentina L. Brashers,Neal S. Rote 2019 Understanding Pathophysiology 3rd Elsevier Australia

Specific requirements

Not applicable

How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Eligibility for Supplementary Assessment

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks may be penalised at the following maximum rate: 
- 5% (of the assessment task's identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- 10% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the third day - 20% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted after seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late. To request an extension you must contact your course coordinator to negotiate an outcome.


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The SafeUSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or

Wellbeing Services

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To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Administration of Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Academic Misconduct
  • Students with a Disability

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General Enquiries

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