SHE Level 3
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M3B723105
Module Leader Sandra Graham
School School of Health and Life Sciences
Subject Nursing
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Student of an undergraduate / post graduate professional or health related degree programme that has attained academic credits at a minimum of Level 2 / 8; Registered Nurse or AHPs, an individual who works in a health and social care area in a clinical or non clinical role

Summary of Content

The aim of this module is to introduce students to the concept of palliative care in its wider context. Key issues underpinning palliative care will be appraised. The needs of patients with more common advanced malignant/non-malignant disease will be analysed. Students will use research-based evidence to develop their knowledge and skills for this group of patients


Trends in palliative care - historical background, the development of specialism, politics, development of models for the broader context of palliative care. Role of education and research.Concepts in palliative care - centrality of the patient to the decision making process, truth-telling, needs of relatives, quality of life issues physical,psychological,social,spiritual,hope. Bereavement theories/cultural issues. Needs of health professionals. Common symptoms and related pathophysiology in advanced malignant /non-malignant disease e.g. dyspnoea, oedema, tissue viability, oral hygiene and/or mental confusion. Role of the team in institutional and non-institutional settings. Ethics and legal aspects of palliative care.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:1. Utilise contemporary legislation, guidelines policy and evidence base to analyse the current trends in palliative care including ethical and legal issues.2. Reflect on philosophical concepts which are unique to palliative care.3. Demonstrate how to apply palliative care concepts to practice.4. Analyse ways of enhancing communication skills.5. Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts of Quality of Life (QOL) and hope as it relates to palliative care.6. Demonstrate a person centred understanding of the needs of patients with prevalent advanced malignant and non-malignant disease.7. Evaluate the role of the team in palliative care.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

This module can be delivered in three different combinations of lectures, seminars, tutorials, interactive discussions, workshops, directed and self-directed study. This combination will depend on whether the module is being delivered on site at GCU ' face to face', 'blended' at GCU or a venue other that GCU e.g. Contractual international agreement or being delivered completely 'online' . The student will always obtain the equivalent of 36 hours of contact time with the module team, excluding individual academic support. The fundamental aim of the teaching and learning strategies, irrespective of delivery mode is to support the development of autonomous, independent problem solving and decision making within the parameters of their profession competence, role and employers agreed vicarious liability (or equivalent). The teaching and learning strategy will be designed to encourage the students to synthesise and apply the theory that relates to palliative care nursing in its broader context. The student will use the theory to develop his/her nursing practice. A wide range of teaching strategies will be used throughout the module which will include lectures, small group discussions, seminars, reflection sessions, and case study tutorials.

Indicative Reading

Indicative Reading Hanks, W.C., Cherney, N., Chrustakis, N. A., Fallon, M., Kaasa, S., Port, R. K. (eds) 2011 Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine , 4 th revised edn. Oxford University Press, Oxford Lloyd-Williams, M. 2003 Psychosocial Issues in Palliative Care . Oxford University Press, Oxford Lugton, J. McIntyre. (eds) 2005 Palliative Care: The Nursing Role , 2nd edn., Elsevier, Churchill Livingston: Edinburgh Payne, S., Seymour, J., Ingleton, C. 2008 Palliative care nursing: Principles and Practice , 2nd edn, McGraw Hill Open University Press Pettifer, A., De Souza J. 2012 End-of-Life Nursing Care , Sage Publications Ltd Wittenberg-Lyles, E., Goldsmith, J., Ferrell, B., Ragan, S, L. 2013 Communication in Palliative Nursing -360b7 <> b7 <> b7 <> <>

Transferrable Skills

Develop independent learning by working in a self-directed manner Develop study and IT skills to underpin effective learning Develop critical thinking, decision making and communication skills Work effectively with others Underpin professional practice through reflection and the integration of theory and practice Appreciate the need for a high level of ethical and professional conduct

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Tutorials (FT) 12.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Lectures (FT) 12.00
Seminars (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 144.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework n/a 100.00 40% Summative: 4,000 word essay on psychological/spiritual or ethical issues in palliative care