Course Title: Apply effective communication skills in nursing practice

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2009

Course Code: NURS5141C

Course Title: Apply effective communication skills in nursing practice

School: 155T Vocational Health and Sciences

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4247 - Certificate IV in Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 nursing)

Course Contact: City Bruce Killey/Bundoora Vivienne Decleva

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4809

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

City Campus  Bruce Killey 99254809

Bundoora campus  Vivienne Decleva 99257539

Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Not applicable

Course Description

This competency unit describes the skills and knowledge required for effective communication in complex communication situations and its application to nursing practice; the function and purpose of small groups; meeting procedures; and the dynamics of group work and evaluation as a tool for continuous improvement

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

HLTEN502A Apply effective communication skills in nursing practice


HLTEN502A/01 Use effective communication skills in complex situations
HLTEN502A/02 Deliver complex information effectively
HLTEN502A/03 Identify and address actual and potential constraints to communication
HLTEN502A/04 Evaluate effectiveness of communication in complicated situations
HLTEN502A/05 Use information technology
HLTEN502A/06 Lead small group discussions
HLTEN502A/07 Give and receive feedback for performance improvement
HLTEN502A/08 Use the principles and processes of open disclosure effectively

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Apply principles of effective communication, with an understanding of communication processes and factors that facilitate and inhibit communication
1.2 Maximise opportunities for staff to involve clients, family and carers in their care and treatment
1.3 Take into account the roles and responsibilities of various health care personnel involved in communicating in complicated situations
1.4 Complete all documentation detailing complicated and difficult situations complying with legal requirements
1.5 Apply a respectful and confidential manner throughout all communications
1.6 Provide a therapeutic environment in all interactions with clients through a caring, sensitive, confident and reassuring manner
1.7 Demonstrate politeness, respect and empathy in all interactions with clients, family and carers
1.8 Use health terminology correctly in written and verbal communication with clients, family, carers and colleagues, using accurate spelling and pronunciation

2.1 Deliver complex information in a manner that is clearly understood by clients, carers, colleagues and others
2.2 Allow time for complex information to be comprehended taking into account people’s differing levels of understanding
2.3 Actively encourage clients, family and carers to share their information
2.4 Confirm the understanding of information by clients, carers, colleagues and others
2.5 Communicate effectively in an emergency situation in line with the health organisation policy and procedure and in consultation/collaboration with registered nurse
2.6 Address stressful situations using effective communication skills or refer to the most appropriate health care team member for resolution
2.7 Deliver complex information to clients/carers in a manner that enhances understanding and prevents ‘information overload’

3.1 Identify actual and potential constraints to effective communication in the workplace
3.2 Identify and apply communication strategies and techniques appropriate to a range of varying complicated situations
3.3 Identify early signs of potential complicated or difficult situations
3.4 Implement strategies to address complicated or difficult communication situations in line with relevant policies and procedures and within scope of role
3.5 Clarify roles of other health professionals involved in complicated communication situations
3.6 Clarify and address the issues and needs of people taking into account differing cultures, religious practices, language, physical disability and emotional state
Note : Performance criteria for elements 4,5,6 and 7 could not be accomodated here.

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Participation in formal lectures
Participate in simulations of communication with clients, family and staff
Perform elements of competence as designated for this learning segment to the required standard during clinical placement

Teaching Schedule

Ten sessions spread over Phase one of the program.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Crisp, J and Taylor, C. 2005. Potter & Perry’s Fundamentals of Nursing. 2nd Ed Elsevier: Sydney


Other Resources

McCabe, C. 2006. Communication skills for nursing practice. Palgrave Macmillan England, New York
Nelson Thornes (Publisher) 2006 Communication in clinical settings. London
Munoz. C. 2005. Transcultural communication in nursing. 2nd Edition. Thomas Delmar Learning. Clifton Park New York
Balzer-Riley, J. 2004. Communication in nursing. 5th Edition. Mosby

Overview of Assessment

Observation in the workplace with questioning to address appropriate application of knowledge.
Written tests/ assignments
Case study and scenario as a basis for discussion of issues and strategies to contribute to best practice.

Assessment Tasks

Observation in the workplace with questioning to address appropriate application of knowledge.
Written tests/ assignments
Case study and scenario as a basis for discussion of issues and strategies to contribute to best practice.

Assessment Matrix

Assignment will be handed out at the commencement of the course, for completion once all the hours have been delivered.
The Assignment will constitute 100% of the required marks.
Observation in the workplace and assessment of clinical competencies will be ongoing during clinical placements.
To achieve competency assignment must be completed by due date and related clinical competencies achieved.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview