*Available to International students only

The Graduate Diploma in Nursing (Acute Care) is a 36-unit program offered by the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.

Admission requirements

Applicants must normally hold an approved degree or equivalent qualification and must be registered nurses in their country of residence.

However, the Board may, under certain circumstances and subject to specific conditions, admit others who can show evidence of fitness for candidature.

In addition applicants must provide a supporting statement nominating their area of clinical preference in acute care nursing for university sourced observational professional experience placement.  

Areas of clinical preference include:

  • Cardiac
  • Critical Care
  • Emergency
  • High Dependency
  • Mental Health
  • Paediatrics

The course will not lead to registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia.

Course aims

The Graduate Diploma in Nursing (Acute Care) aims to:

  • facilitate development of specialised knowledge, skills attributes for application in a range of acute care nursing environments

Learning outcomes 

In addition to the Learning Outcomes of the Graduate Diploma in Nursing, on completion of this pathway students will be able to:

  • critically analyse the concepts and theory around recognition, response and management of the acute, complex and/or critically-ill deteriorating patient in a range of acute care settings
  • identify and enact relevant international, national, state and territory strategic health care goals in acute care nursing environments
  • apply concepts and theories around recognition, response and management of the acute, complex and/or critically-ill deteriorating patient in a simulated acute care setting

Program of study

To qualify for the Graduate Diploma in Nursing (Acute Care) a student must complete 36 units as specified below with a grade of Pass or NGP or better in each topic.

The award of a grade of Fail (F) in the same topic on more than one occasion or in 9 units or more, or failure to complete the course within four consecutive semesters may constitute prima facie evidence of unsatisfactory progress for the purposes of the University''s Policy on Student Progress.

Except with permission of the Faculty Board:

  • no topic may be attempted more than twice
  • a student may not include a topic which repeats work previously undertaken.

Not all topics will be available in any given year or semester.

Specialisation - Acute Care - Core topics

4.5 units comprising:

NURS8740  Foundations for Responding to Clinical Deterioration Across the Lifespan (4.5 units)

Core - Year 1 topics

18 units comprising:

NURS9123  Epidemiology and Population Studies for Health Care Practice (4.5 units)
NURS9124  Advanced Thinking, Communicating and Problem Solving for Health Professionals (4.5 units)
NURS9126  Leadership in Health Studies  (4.5 units)
NURS9219  Introduction to Research (4.5 units)

Option - Year 1 topics

13.5 units selected from non-PEP acute care nursing topics:

NURS8742  Critical Care Nursing Theory (4.5 units)
NURS8744  Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease (4.5 units)
NURS8746  Managing High Acuity Surgical Care (4.5 units)
NURS8747  Managing High Acuity Medical Care (4.5 units)
NURS8748  Acute Care Observational PEP (4.5 units)
NURS8828  Contemporary Issues in Paediatric Nursing (4.5 units)
NURS8760  Acute Mental Health Nursing Theory (4.5 units)
NURS8751  Principles of Emergency Nursing (4.5 units

Students may, in consultation with the Course Coordinator, select other postgraduate topics offered by the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences as their option topics.