Page Navigation

Module Descriptors

This page displays the selected Module Descriptor.

Printer friendly version Printer friendly version

Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 18/01/2023 12:32:47

Title of Module: Frailty in Later Life

Code: NURS11094 SCQF Level: 11
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Raymond  Duffy

Summary of Module

A hallmark of ageing is diversity, and while many people around the world will live relatively healthy independent later lives, there will also be many individuals of the same age who struggle with complex syndromes and comorbidities and a range of social disadvantages and vulnerabilities. This module focuses on developing an appreciation of the concept of frailty and the experiences and needs of people living with frailty in later life. Students will explore the nature of pre-frailty and frailty, the functional and health trajectories of frailty and advanced later life and the range of evidence-based interventions and service models that foster wellbeing, independence and ongoing social participation.

The module contents embrace the care spectrum from prevention to palliative and end of life care aligned with ageing in place and contemporary interpretations of long term care, including care at home and care within nursing homes. Ethical dimensions of practice and policy related to protecting vulnerable people will include consideration of rights-based approaches, abuse, restraint, risk taking, capacity and self-determination.

This module will contribute to the development of UWS graduate attributes including critical thinking, an analytical, enquiring and culturally aware collaborative research minded graduate. One that is digitally literate and motivated; creative and resilient. Leading to success and enhanced work related opportunities.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
check mark

Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:






check mark


Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1


Term 2


Term 3check mark

[Top of Page]

Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Conceptualise and evaluate the influence of current knowledge on the concept of frailty.

L2. Critically review a range of assessment tools that may assist in the detection of frailty in older people.

L3. Critically appraise evidence informed approaches to managing frailty, working with the older person, their family and caregivers.

L4. Analyse the experience of frailty for the older person and their family.

L5. Appraise current government directives and standards of care for older people living with frailty.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 11.

Critical review and appraisal of literature on the meaning of age, life events and illness to an individual and their significant others.

A command of the impact that the transition to frailty will have on an individual and their significant others.

Demonstrate competency in awareness of a range of medical, social, psychological and spiritual coping-based strategies for acute and chronic presenting symptoms.

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 11.

Demonstrate competency in creative and innovative approaches to improving perceived quality of life for those experiencing frailty.

Clear articulation of the main principles and theories of the physical, psychological, spiritual and social care of frail older people.

Critically appraise some of the more specialised challenges facing frail older people and their families.

Identify challenges in the workplace or care environment and provide possible strategies to meet such challenges.

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 11.

Critical interpretation and extended knowledge of issues in frailty.

Competent demonstration of issues of vulnerability in the frail old and evidence of possible abuse.

Application of critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis to issues which are at the forefront of developments in the definition, diagnosis and treatment of frailty.

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 11.

Demonstrate a clear ability to communicate effectively with frail older people and carers.

Critical reflection on own interpersonal and inter-professional communication skills.

Demonstrate competent acquisition, analysis, interpretation and presentation of research data as part of independent study.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 11.

Exhibit skills in the demonstration of leadership and initiative in the development of integrated symptom management of frail older people.

Consistent application and promotion of the use of current best practice in the care of frail older people.

Critical reflection on current practice and the identification of personal learning needs and the needs of others within own place of work or setting.

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

[Top of Page]

Learning and Teaching
The learning and teaching has been designed to enhance the master's level attributes of learners and stimulate reflective and critical thinking. It is envisaged that a strong student-centred emphasis will ensure that the teaching process will develop skills that facilitate lifelong learning.

Online Learning:
Participants will be encouraged to take control of their own learning and become self-motivated learners. This approach
recognises the wealth of knowledge and richness of experience students may already have at their disposal. Discussion and sharing of experiences will be encouraged in order to capitalise on this. Delivery methods used will include module
specific eLearning objects, case studies and problem-based learning. Our online learning will also utilise video, podcats and webcasts and other creative commons resources from a variety of key organisations worldwide involved in older peoples' and frailty care.

Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any additional support needs that students may have that are
brought to the attention of the School. Reasonable adjustments will be made for any student assessed as requiring enabling support strategies to be put in place.
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Asynchronous Class Activity48
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity6
Personal Development Plan6
Independent Study140
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

British Geriatrics Society (2020)BGS Frailty Hub. Available at:

Clegg, A., Young, J., Iliffe, S., Rikkert, M.O. and Rockwood, K. (2013) Frailty in elderly people. The Lancet, 381(9868), pp.752-762.

Hoogendijk E.O., Afilalo J., Ensrud K.E. et al (2019) Frailty (Series).

Obbia, P., Graham, C., Duffy, F.J.R., & Gobbens, R.J. (2019). Preventing frailty in older people: An exploration of primary care professionals' experiences. International Journal of Older People Nursing, e12297.

Lorenzo-López, L., Maseda, A., de Labra, C., Regueiro-Folgueira, L., Rodríguez-Villamil, J.L. and Millán-Calenti, J.C., (2017). Nutritional determinants of frailty in older adults: A systematic review. BMC Geriatrics, Vol. 17(1), pp 1-13.

Rahman, S (2018)Living with Frailty. New York: Routledge.

Silvester K,Mohammed M, Harriman P, Girolami A, Downes T. (2014) Timely care for frail older people referred to hospital improves efficiency and reduces mortality without the need for extra resources. Age and Ageing. Vol. 43 (4), pp. 472-7.

Skilbeck, Arthur and Seymour (2017) Making sense of frailty: An ethnographic study of the experience of older people living with complex health problems. International Journal of Older People Nursing. 00:1:1-11.

Theou, O. and Rockwood, K. (2015) (eds) Frailty in ageing: biological, clinical and social implications. Basel. Karger.

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
For the purposes of this module, academic engagement equates to the following:
Regular interaction with the University VLE to access learning resources, and completion and submission of the module assessments on time (or at a specified time agreed with the Module coordinator). If submission proves not to be feasible then use of the extenuating circumstances procedure would be expected.

[Top of Page]

Supplemental Information

Programme BoardMental Health Nursing & IP
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelMHN&IP L9-11
ModeratorMargaret Brown
External ExaminerL Macaden
Accreditation Details
Version Number


[Top of Page]

Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Written Assignment: Essay 100%
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Learning Outcome (5) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Essaycheck markcheck markcheck markcheck markcheck mark1000
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

[Top of Page]

  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
At UWS and within the School of Health and Life Sciences we are committed to advancing and promoting equality and
diversity in all of our activities and aim to establish an inclusive culture, free from discrimination and based upon
the values of fairness, dignity and respect.

We do this by promoting equality, valuing diversity and communicating the importance of dignity both at work and study.
We are committed to enhancing wellbeing; (see
and have the structures, leadership and support in place to embed equality, diversity and inclusion into everything we

For further information, see

UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.