SHE Level 3
SCQF Credit Points 10.00
ECTS Credit Points 5.00
Module Code M3B922061
Module Leader Gary Rutherford
School School of Health and Life Sciences
Subject Scottish Ambulance Service
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Paramedic registered with the Health Professions Council

Summary of Content

The majority of adverse events in medicine are caused by errors, which can be identified and quantified using a systematic human factors analysis. These errors are generally failures in the non-technical skills of the clinician rather than a failure of equipment or technical skill In this module students will learn how a knowledge of Human Factors can be used as a safety system to improve patient safety within the medical environment.


Introduction to Human factors Situational Awareness Decision Making Communication Team Working Managing Stress Managing fatigue Non Technical skills

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module the student should be able to:1. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the development of Human Factors as a safety system within their specialised area.2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of how situation awareness contributes to the Human Factors system3. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of decisions making strategies as a member of their specialised team 4. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of team working skills that can improve patient safety5. Recognise how stress and fatigue can be detrimental to non-technical skills6. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of how briefing and debriefing can enhance team working

Teaching / Learning Strategy

This module will equip the student with the knowledge required to work more safely as a team. The structure of the module allows the student to ga in the re quired knowledge through interactive teaching, group work and self reflection. The student will initially be given the taught elements through a variety of teaching strategies including 'face to face' type teaching, interactive group discussions and reflection on practice. The student will then be expected to use these taught elements and observe their own clinical practice. Observations and materials collated during this period will then support the final assessment. By using this teaching and learning strategy it is hoped the student will reflect upon their own area of practice, making the module as focussed as possible to their clinical area of practice.

Indicative Reading

Dekker,S. (2011) Patient Safety: A Human Factors Approach. CBC Press: Florida Flin,R. O'Connor,P. and Crichton,M. (2008) Safety at the Sharp End: A Guide to Non-Technical Skills. Hallinan,J. (2008) Why We make Mistakes: How We Look Without Seeing, Forget Things in Seconds, and Are All Pretty Sure We Are Way Above Average. Reason,J. (2008) The Human Contribution: Unsafe Acts, Accidents and Heroic Recoveries. Stranks,J. (2007) Human Factors and Behavioural Safety

Transferrable Skills

Work in a self directed manner, taking responsibility for own learning and personal development. Develop communication and IT skills to underpin effective learning. Communicate effectively in both written and oral forms with fellow students and the teaching team. Work effectively with others. Underpin professional development by integration of theory and practice.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Independent Learning (PT) 70.00
Assessment (PT) 20.00
Lectures (PT) 10.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 2 n/a 70.00 35% 2000 word assignment
Coursework 1 n/a 30.00 35% 10 minute poster presentation