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The University of Southampton

HLTH6142 Principles of Nursing Practice

Module Overview

This module will enable you to adopt an enquiring approach to the assessment and delivery of safe and effective research-led, evidence and values based practice. Building on the learning achieved in Foundations of Nursing Practice and your first practice experience, you will explore how a structured approach to the assessment and planning of care enables nurses to identify and meet the essential care needs of people across the lifespan.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

Please see the learning outcomes below.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Critically evaluate why nurses take a structured but holistic approach to the assessment, planning, implementation, evaluation and improvement of nursing care.
  • Draw upon a knowledge and understanding of psychology and social science in order to articulate how people may have co- existing physical, psychological and socio-economic needs
  • Identify and discuss how an understanding of how development and aging can influence the assessment and planning of care needs
  • Critique, synthesise and apply research evidence relating to the delivery of essential nursing care in your own field of practice


Principles of Nursing • Utilising problem solving approaches to assessing, planning, implementing and evaluating care needs. • Medicines management (to include legal and ethical frameworks for drug administration & prescribing) • Patient safety. (medical devices; recognising and reporting unsafe situations / incidents) • Essential nursing skills (injection technique; aseptic technique) • Legal and ethical underpinning of practice Leadership, management and team working • Measuring and managing quality of essential care delivery (clinical governance, benchmarking, , tools for continuous improvement) • Responding to feedback and complaints Psychological, social and structural influences on health behaviour: • Social and structural influences on health behaviour (Families; Socialisation; class; poverty and welfare; work and unemployment; Culture and Racism) • Understanding the lived experience of service users • Concepts of self-care, lay and professional care Age continuum • Normal physiological and psychological processes of pregnancy and childbirth • Developmental physiology and aging • Psychological and social development across the life span • Effects of drugs on different periods of the lifespan (Pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics; iatrogenics) Essential care needs • Identifying, anticipating and meeting essential mental and physical health needs which are specific to: o Children o People with Learning disability o People with Mental health difficulties o Adults o Maternal health needs o Older people • Critical analysis and application of evidence relating to essential care needs within your own field of practice: o Cognitive impairment o Psychological wellbeing o Bladder and bowel disorders: continence management o Nutrition (screening and assessment; promoting healthy eating; effects of socio-economic status, education, age and illness on nutrition) o Fluid and hydration o Assessing, identifying, managing and reducing risk of infection in healthcare settings o Assessing and managing pain o Skin health: Pressure ulcers, tissue injury and repair / wound healing o Other clinical risk assessment (e.g. falls) Application of life and social sciences relating to: • Learning and memory in the health care context • Social influences and interaction in the health care context (Obedience, persuasion, conformity) • Psychological influences on how people behave, experience and understand what is happening to them (including Sense of coherence, self-efficacy, locus of control; stress and coping). • Life sciences (Reproductive system; Urinary system, fluids and electrolytes; Digestive system; Special senses)

Special Features

Research themes – Core content introduced in this module will reflect key research themes in the Faculty and material will be delivered by active researchers

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

This module will be taught through a range of learning and teaching strategies within generic and field specific groups which may include: • Technology enhanced learning (online guided learning) • Lectures • Action Learning groups • Small group work and discussion /exercises • Guided independent reading • Independent reflection • Clinical skills rehearsal

Independent Study157
Total study time250

Resources & Reading list

Rosalinda Alfaro-LeFevre (2014). Applying nursing process : the foundation for clinical reasoning. 

edited by Ian Bullock, Jill MacLeod Clark, Jo Rycroft-Malone.. (2012). Adult nursing practice : using evidence in care. 

Barker P (2004). Assessment in psychiatric and mental health nursing: in search of the whole person.. 

Skolnik NS (2007). Essentials of Global Health (Essential Public Health). 

Essence of Care.

Atheron H & Crickmore D (2011). Learning disabilities: towards inclusion. 

Glasper EA, Aylott M & Battrick C (Eds) (2009). Developing practical skills for nursing children and young people.. 

Galbraith A, Bullock S, Manias E, Hunt B and Richards A. (2007). Fundamentals of pharmacology: an applied approach for nursing and allied health. 

Holland K, Jenkins J, Solomon J (2008). Applying the Roper-Logan-Tierney Model in Practice.. 

Walker J, Payne S, Smith P and Jarrett N (2007). Psychology for nurses and caring professions.. 

Macionis JJ and Plummer K (2011). Sociology a global introduction. 

Dougherty L and Lister S (eds) (2008). The Royal Marsden Hospital Manual of Clinical Nursing Procedures,. 



MethodPercentage contribution
Written assignment  (3500 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: External

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