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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 18/01/2023 11:38:05

Title of Module: Managing Complex Needs

Code: NURS09233 SCQF Level: 9
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 40 ECTS: 20
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Health and Life Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:Kevin   Lang

Summary of Module

This module comprises 6 weeks theoretical study and 9 weeks practice learning experience which will provide the student with the opportunity to care for people with a range of health care needs. Through theory and practice, the student will further develop assessment skills and critical decision making skills within a multidisciplinary care team. Practice learning will be facilitated within a range of healthcare settings.

The practice element will allow the student to demonstrate an increasing degree of autonomy, working towards the equivalent of independence and at times working without direct supervision, where appropriate. The student will be facilitated to take the lead in relation to assessing, planning, implementing and evaluating safe and effective person centred care, taking cognisance of professional and legislative requirements within healthcare delivery.

  • The module will also equip the student to develop, demonstrate and utilise appropriate graduate skills, management skills including those of leadership and quality improvement strategies to consolidate healthcare delivery.

  • The module will also facilitate the consolidation of the student's ability to make recommendations related to care load management and the delivery of safe, effective and evidence based interventions.

  • Students will maintain an ePortfolio to reflect the application of theory to practice.

  • Module content reflects current NMC proficiencies required for registration as an Adult Nurse.Specific Annexe A & B skills for this module are detailed in the programme skills schedule and preload is related to skills development in assessment, formulation, care planning and clinical decision making.

  • Students will have opportunity in placement experience to apply knowledge and understanding of mechanisms of drug interactions and adverse drug reactions to medicines optimisation, medicines administered and clinical practice, (BiNE, LO9 & 10, 11).

  • Programme threads of Learning Disability, Law and Safeguarding, Digital Health Technology, and PEOLC will inform module content. Specifically, Promote the rights of people with learning disabilities to participate in decisions about their care and health; assessment of legal Capacity; symptom assessment and management, decision making, organ/tissue donation, DNACPR, POA/living wills.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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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:
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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

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

L1. Understand the principles of effective decision-making and apply these to an adult care setting by managing nursing care for patients with complex needs.

L2. Recognise and respond to the challenges of providing safe, effective and person-centred care for people who have co-morbidities and complex care needs in an adult care setting.

L3. Apply skills and knowledge related to monitoring and evaluating of the quality of the patient's care experience and their care outcomes.

L4. Based on life science and nursing theory critically evaluate holistic care provision in a variety of adult healthcare settings.

L5. Demonstrate evidence of achievement of the required standards of proficiency associated with your professional discipline.

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 9.

Quality improvement
Pathophysiology and pharmacology related to complex needs
Cognitive Dissonance
Recognising the deteriorating patient e.g delirium, sepsis
Clinical supervision
Palliative care
Long term conditions

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 9.

Team management
Clinical decision making
Assessment and evaluation of care needs and interventions

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 9.

Critical decision making

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 9.

Communication with a range of service users and multidisciplinary team members
Challenging conversation
Exploring the role of digital technologies in support care
Negotiation skills

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 9.

Multidisciplinary team working
Autonomous decision making
Partnership working with service users and healthcare professionals

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.

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Learning and Teaching
The learning and teaching strategies applied to this module contribute towards the development of UWS graduate attributes as outlined in “I am UWS” See link: Specifically, the completion of the portfolio activities develop skills in critical thinking, self- reflection, collaboration, problem-solving, and communicating effectively. Module hours exceed the norm because of the practice element.
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)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery12
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity32
Laboratory/Practical Demonstration/Workshop28
Asynchronous Class Activity24
Work Based Learning/Placement 400
Independent Study24
520 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:

Alfaro-LeFevre, R. (2016) Critical Thinking, Clinical Reasoning and Clinical Judgement. 6th Edn. Florida: Elsevier.

Ellis, P. Standing, M. and Roberts, S. (2020) Patient Assessment and Care Planning in Nursing. 3rd Edn. London: Sage Publications

Flin, R. Youngson, GG. and Yule, S.(2016) Enhancing Surgical Performance. A Primer in Non-Technical Skills. Florida: Taylor Francis Group.

Harding, M.M. and Snyder, J.S. (2019) Clinical Reasoning Cases in Nursing. 7th Edn. Missouri: Elsevier.

Standing, M. (2017) Clinical Judgement and Decision Making in Nursing. 3rd Edn. London: Sage Publications.

Pears, R. and Shields, G. (2019) Cite them right the essential referencing guide. London, Red Globe Press/ MacMillan International Higher Education (EBook).

(**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:
100% attendance in practice placement areas is required by the end of the programme to meet NMC requirements. In this module students may be assessed if at least 70% of the practice learning experience is met, the placement component is clinical practice and/or simulated practice.

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardAdult Nursing & Healthcare
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelBSc Pre-registration Adult Nursing Programme
ModeratorNan Bryden
External ExaminerK Norman
Accreditation DetailsNMC
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Each component of assessment must be passed to achieve an overall pass for this module. This is to comply with NMC Standards for Nursing and Midwifery Education (2018) which state that in relation to the SFNME R5.16 no compensation is permitted between theory and practice assessments.
Where modules in the programme contain a practice element, the outcomes are assessed using some of the principles of the innovative concept of ‘patchwork assessment’. This involves continuous formative feedback supported by peer engagement, as described in the HEA Framework for transforming assessment in higher education (2016). Students engage in deep and meaningful feedback with each other and students should have the opportunity to support their peers whilst working in reflective groups.
The formative assessment allows students to share ‘patches’ with other students and their assessors or supervisors in small group discussions to encourage collaborative learning and formative peer feedback.
The summative assessment in this module will comprise of three components.

Summative Assessment Component 1: 60% weighting
Students will individually be assessed using an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).

Summative Assessment Component 2: 40% weighting
Students will complete a 2000 word critical reflection using a reflective model critically evaluating care provision for a patient with complex needs underpinned by life sciences and nursing theory.

Summative Assessment Component 3: Placement component (clinical practice and/or simulated practice) linked to this module.

(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
Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs)check markcheck markcheck mark  600

Component 2
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
Essay   check mark 400

Component 3
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
Performance/ Studio work/ Placement/ WBL/ WRL assessment    check mark00
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

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

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  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
This module is appropriate for all students. To promote inclusive practice, procedures and processes have been subject to Equality Impact Assessment where appropriate. In line with the Equality Act 2010 and UWS Refreshed Equality Outcomes 2021 - 2025 Public Sector Equality Duty Mainstreaming and Equality Outcomes Report 2021 ( (pp. 37 - 39)
The School of Health and Life Sciences encourages the disclosure of support requirements, including disability, at the recruitment stage and throughout the duration of the module. Emphasis is placed on confidentiality of information, the benefits of disclosure and that no detriment to progress will be experienced. The School will endeavour to make reasonable adjustments to teaching and learning approaches and arrangements for assessment, and (when applicable) periods of placement, where a student has disclosed specific requirements.
This module has a practice element and takes account of the Nursing and Midwifery Council's statement on reasonable adjustments (NMC 2019) ( In particular section 23:
"The (Equality) Act 2010 makes it clear that it is not discriminatory to apply competence standards (which include our Code, our revalidation and our education standards) to a disabled person. As a professional regulator responsible for protecting the public, it would not be right for us to adjust these standards. However, we can make reasonable adjustments to assist nurses, midwives and nursing associates in meeting our standards".

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)

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

Charity number SC002520.