Contemporary Nursing and Mental Health A

Unit code: HNB2002 | Study level: Undergraduate
(One credit point is usually equivalent to one hour of study per week)
St Albans
HNB1003 - Professional Experience Placement 1 Nursing
(Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


This unit explores person-centred care in mental health bridging the lifespan from infant to older adult. The unit will examine mental health disorders integrating neurobiology, pathophysiology and population health to enhance the students understanding of mental illness. Students will be introduced to policy and legislative frameworks that govern service provision in mental health settings. Using biopsychosocial frameworks, they will apply critical thinking and clinical reasoning to formulate nursing assessment and management of people with selected mental health conditions across the lifespan. Nursing management will be informed by the principle of partnering with consumers and carers, knowledge from lived experience and human rights, and cultural safety. Students will develop their therapeutic and professional communication skills.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Review how the regulatory frameworks, standards and codes of practice and ethics, and government policies guide the safe delivery of evidence based person-centred mental health care;
  2. Articulate knowledge and skills in psychiatric assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation and documentation of care to formulate nursing management of people with selected mental health conditions across the lifespan using digital health;
  3. Appraise population health and nursing-related theories of mental distress to examine mental illness across the lifespan;
  4. Contextualise clinical reasoning and critical thinking when planning and implementing recovery oriented, trauma informed nursing care to people with anxiety, mood and psychotic disorders across the lifespan;
  5. Critically reflect on their professional and therapeutic communication using the principles of partnering with consumers and carers and taking into account Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, other cultures and people of diversity; and
  6. Exhibit knowledge in pathophysiology and the principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics in psychotropic medication.


For Melbourne campuses

The assessment tasks link the learning outcomes and graduate capabilities. In the first assessment task students will undertake an online test. The second assessment task requires students to apply professional and therapeutic communication and assessment skills in an interview they conduct, videotape and submit for assessment. The third assessment requires students to collect a range of artefacts of learning activities undertaken that demonstrate functional knowledge of assessment and interventions utilised in mental health settings.

Assessment type: Test
Grade: 15%
Online test (30mins)
Assessment type: Other
Grade: 35%
OSCA - Videoed Interview of applying professional and therapeutic communication skills.
Assessment type: Portfolio
Grade: 50%
Portfolio of assessment and interventions in mental health nursing. (2000 words)

Required reading

Required readings will be made available on VU Collaborate.

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following course(s):

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