NURSING 1012 - Aboriginal Healthcare

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2020

This course provides students with knowledge and strategies to enable them to provide high quality clinical and cultural care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It promotes an understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people?s experiences of health and culture, and of Australia?s history. This will inform an understanding of the health issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today, and the contribution that nurses can provide in primary and acute health care settings.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code NURSING 1012
    Course Aboriginal Healthcare
    Coordinating Unit Adelaide Nursing School
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Restrictions Available to B .Nurs students only
    Course Description This course provides students with knowledge and strategies to enable them to provide high quality clinical and cultural care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It promotes an understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people?s experiences of health and culture, and of Australia?s history. This will inform an understanding of the health issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today, and the contribution that nurses can provide in primary and acute health care settings.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Janet Kelly

    School Office
    Phone: +61 8 8313 3595
    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    1 Relate the impact of policies and history to the current cultural and health contexts of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the perceptions of health and wellbeing.

    2 Examine meanings of health and illness from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives.

    3 Recognise and appreciate the impact of social and cultural determinants of health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

    4 Explain the importance of cultural awareness and cultural safety in relation to culturally appropriate care and service provision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

    5 Apply critical reflections on own values and attitudes towards cultural safety and the provision of health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities.

    6 Appreciate the experiences of Indigenous patients and their families when engaging with health services through health journey mapping.

    7 Identify effective strategies for health promotion and health maintenance for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Best, O and Fredericks, B, 2018, Yatdjuligin - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nursing & Midwifery Care, Cambridge University Press

    This textook is highly recommended but purchase is not required. 
    Recommended Resources
    Taylor, T, &Guerin, P 2019 Health care and Indigenous Australians, Macmillan International, London

    Biles, B & Biles, J 2020,  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples' Health and Wellbeing, Oxford University Press, Docklands, Victoria

    Health Infonet website @

    Managing Two Worlds Together Case Study Reports @

    Online Learning
    All lectures and activities provided for the course are designed to introduce the topic and to give some insights for students to further develop their knowledge. Content in the form of PowerPoint lectures or presentations, guest speakers, interviews and links to various other media are provided for students to access for each weeks’ module.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course will provide current, historical and cultural perspectives to inform a greater understanding of the health challenges facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the contribution that nurses can provide in primary and acute health care.

    Aboriginal Healthcare involves a program of reading, on line resources and videos on Canvas in weekly modules, as well as interactive face to face lectures and tutorials which students are expected to engage with. Students will need to engage with material on Canvas prior to attending tutorials, and before completing assignments.

    Students are expected to engage with all materials, critically reflect on their own values and attitudes towards cultural safety, and discuss how quality health care can be provided for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities.


    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Students would expect to study 12 hours per week throughout the duration of this course. Students are strongly advised to set aside a regular time for study and approach each weeks topic.
    Learning Activities Summary

    Blended learning activities are embedded throughout the course. Tutorials, lectures, videos, small group work and online quiz material are used to enhance student learning experiences.  

    Specific Course Requirements
    Students are required to attend the face to face tutorials.
    If they are unable to attend a tutorial they will need to contact the course coordinator for alternative learning options (for example watch a specific video).

    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Discussion groups will offer students an opportunity to explore their own thoughts and understanding of the course content. This
    approach also offers opportunities to develop conversational/communication skills that are culturally appropriate when working with Aboriginal patients.

  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    Practice Quiz: 0%: Learning outcome 1

    Quiz - focus on content. 30%: Learning outcome - all

      Quiz 1 – for weeks 1 & 2        
      Quiz 2 – for weeks 3 & 4        
      Quiz 3 – for weeks 5 & 6

    Critical reflection. 30%: Learning outcome – all
      Reflection task 1         
      Reflection task 2         

    Application to Practice Exam. 40% Learning outcomes 4, 5, 6          
      Five short answer and 50 multiple choice questions

    Assessment Related Requirements
    Students are encouraged to complete all quizzes and reflection tasks as these will help prepare students for the final application
    to practice exam.

    Assessment Detail


    Practice quiz

    Quiz - focus on content (30%)

    Quiz 1 – covers content in weeks 1 and 2

    Quiz 2 – covers content in weeks 3 and 4

    Quiz 3 – covers content from weeks 5 and 6

    Critical reflection (30%)

    Critical Reflection Task 1 (750 words and three references)

    • Using the Gibbs Reflective Cycle critically reflect over your worldview and culture and how these have influenced your perceptions of Aboriginal people.


    Critical Reflection Task 2: (750 words and three references)

    • Using the Gibbs Reflective Cycle Reflecting critically reflect over;
      • what you have learned personally and professionally about caring for Aboriginal people and cultural safety;
      • your attitudes and beliefs towards Aboriginal People before commencing the course and what these are now and
      • identify any additional learning needs going into the future, particularly when you are practicing as a nurse

    Application to Practice Exam (40%)

    50 MCQ’s (1 mark each) and 5 short answer questions (10 marks each)

    This final assessment aims to apply students learning in this semester to the case studies examined in tutorials. Short answer questions will direct students to reflect over actions they can take to ensure patients are culturally safe and that care is individualised to meet the needs of each patient in the patient journey mapping case studies. This does not require students to 'regurgitate' information but to apply their knowledge. The multiple choice question will require demonstration of understanding of key concepts.
    Unless otherwise indicated all submission of assignments is to be through the assignments portal of MyUni.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

    This course was held for first year students for the first time in Semester 2, 2019, and changes are  being made in response to student queries and emails, for the course in Semester 1, 2020.

    The current assignments are not working, for individual students, nor for the increasing numbers of students. The critical reflection needs to be scaffolded throughout the course, enabling students to build their reflective skills over the semester, and the quiz’s modified so that students can more easily engage with all content. The existing patient journey mapping assignment is difficult for students to understand in first year. We trialled students completing this assignment in pairs, but this has not worked well for many students. In 2020 we propose discussing the patient journey material in tutorials and then testing students’ ability to apply this to practice in an end of semester exam.

    Therefore we have made changes to the learning outcomes and assignments in this course. This will enable the course to better
    meet the learning needs of first year undergraduate students, and enable students to interact more effectively with the course content and concepts in line with the requirements of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Curriculum Framework and the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives Guidelines.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.