CQUniversity Unit Profile

In Progress

Please note that this Unit Profile is still in progress. The content below is subject to change.
NURS20170 Patient Deterioration in the Clinical Setting
Patient Deterioration in the Clinical Setting
All details in this unit profile for NURS20170 have been officially approved by CQUniversity and represent a learning partnership between the University and you (our student).
The information will not be changed unless absolutely necessary and any change will be clearly indicated by an approved correction included in the profile.
General Information


This unit examines clinical assessment and diagnostic reasoning to recognise and respond to a patient's deteriorating condition with appropriate and timely actions. This unit will enhance your knowledge of serious adverse events such as unexpected death and cardiac arrest which often follow observable deterioration in the patient’s condition. You will develop knowledge and skills in the early identification of deterioration, the initiation of prompt and effective action to minimise serious consequences, improve outcomes and lessen the level of intervention required to stabilise patients. The unit will focus on the underlying pathology of the patient's deteriorating condition and the interpretation of clinical manifestations to implement safe and effective nursing care. This unit will develop your theoretical knowledge of reflection in professional practice of nursing care coordination of the deteriorating patient.


Career Level: Postgraduate
Unit Level: Level 8
Credit Points: 6
Student Contribution Band: 7
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load: 0.125

Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

Students must be enrolled in CL22 Master of Clinical Nursing or CL16 Graduate Certificate in Clinical Nursing to undertake this unit.

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Offerings For Term 1 - 2023


Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Class and Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Postgraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Class Timetable

Bundaberg, Cairns, Emerald, Gladstone, Mackay, Rockhampton, Townsville
Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Assessment Overview

1. Practical Assessment
Weighting: Pass/Fail
2. Presentation
Weighting: Pass/Fail

Assessment Grading

This is a pass/fail (non-graded) unit. To pass the unit, you must pass all of the individual assessment tasks shown in the table above.

Previous Student Feedback

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Feedback from Email and discussion


Request for more contact with Unit Coordinator


Regular (fortnightly) Zoom sessions to run in Term 2 2019. Regular (fortnightly) discussion posting by Unit Coordinator Continue visits to partnered Hospital & Health Services

Feedback from Moodle site, email and discussions at Hospital & Health Services.


Question over assessment tasks due dates.


Clarification of due dates with student and partners to minimise confusion via Zoom, the discussion board, and email.

Unit Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
  1. Explain clinical parameters that indicate a patient is deteriorating
  2. Monitor and interpret physiological and psychosocial data to assess a patient's clinical deterioration
  3. Communicate effectively with health team and family members to ensure the accurate transfer and escalation of critical information
  4. Initiate interventions based on diagnostic results of clinical assessment tools and evaluate your nursing actions
  5. Analyse person-centred care of the deteriorating patient through critical self-reflection of professional practice.


Alignment of Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Graduate Attributes
N/A Level
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Professional Level
Advanced Level

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes

Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5
1 - Practical Assessment - 0%
2 - Reflective Practice Assignment - 0%

Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes

Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5
1 - Knowledge
2 - Communication
3 - Cognitive, technical and creative skills
4 - Research
5 - Self-management
6 - Ethical and Professional Responsibility
7 - Leadership
8 - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultures
Textbooks and Resources


There are no required textbooks.

IT Resources

You will need access to the following IT resources:
  • CQUniversity Student Email
  • Internet
  • Unit Website (Moodle)
  • Academic Learning Centre services
  • Access to MIMS through the university library
  • CQUniversity library literature search tools
  • CQ university Library resourses for research
  • Zoom account (Free)
  • Zoom app on your smart phone or access to Zoom on your laptop
  • CQUniversity Library Nursing Resources
  • Zoom (both microphone and webcam capability)
  • Endnote bibliographic software. This is recommended for formatting references.
Academic Integrity Statement

Information for Academic Integrity Statement has not been released yet.

This unit profile has not yet been finalised.