Transition to Nursing Practice

Unit code: HNB3003 | Study level: Undergraduate
(Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
VU Sunshine Clinical School
HNB2008 - Contemporary Nursing C
(Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


The unit is designed to assist senior nursing students with their transition to a registered nurse. It focuses on the role and responsibilities of the beginning practitioner as a competent, safe and confident, professional registered nurse. In this unit the senior student will be assisted to recognise their future role focusing on high quality communication including health and peer education, ethical and legal practice, collaborative practice, professional practice, cultural safety and the use of research evidence for all aspects of practice. The unit will introduce the student to their leadership role including clinical leadership, preceptorship and mentorship. The unit also supports students to develop their advocacy role. It encourages the application of advanced communication skills, critical thinking frameworks and problem-solving skills; developing deep rather than surface learning; encouraging the senior students to recognise that graduates take professional responsibility for continuing competence, being self-directed and life-long learners.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Critique the role of the graduate registered nurse including engagement in various dimensions of leadership, mentorship and preceptorship and delegation;
  2. Exemplify a broad range of therapeutic and professional communication skills in intraprofessional and interprofessional healthcare teams to build and foster collaborative, inclusive and respectful relationships with a diverse range of individuals, groups, colleagues and communities;
  3. Critically review nursing professional standards, regulations for registration as a registered nurse, the ICN Code of Ethics for Nursing, the NMBA Code of Conduct, the role of advocacy in nursing and the role of key professional organisations; and
  4. Critically reflect on what they have learned about their future role as a competent, safe and confident, professional registered nurse and the requirements to maintain competence throughout their career as a professional registered nurse.


For Melbourne campuses

The assessment tasks link the learning outcomes and graduate capabilities and are based on current themes and contemporary nursing practice. The first task will be a written individual assignment that links communication for future employment and requires critical thinking and planning. The second assignment will draw together the work of the individual to produce a reflective and knowledge-based portfolio. The group presentation will critically reflect graduate level knowledge and link this to future employment and understanding of the NMBA Registered Nurse Standards for Practice (2016).

Assessment type: Assignment
Grade: 25%
Written assessment (1000 words)
Assessment type: Portfolio
Grade: 50%
Reflection and knowledge-based portfolio (2000 words)
Assessment type: Presentation
Grade: 25%
Group presentation (20mins)

Required reading

Transition to nursing practice – from student to professional
Harrison, Birks, M., & Mills, J. (2021)| Oxford University Press

As part of a course

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

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