NURSING 774 : Nursing People in Acute Mental Health Crisis

Medical and Health Sciences

2022 Semester Two (1225) (30 POINTS)

Course Prescription

The concept of recovery forms the basis of exploring nursing care of people in states of acute crisis. The course focuses on models of acute care, collaborative care, risk assessment and management, and maintaining a safe, non-coercive environment. Students will be expected to engage in critical reflection and analysis of practice issues and case studies.

Course Overview

There is significant support in the national and international literature of the need to develop a specialty area of practice for mental health nurses working with people in acute mental health crisis. Nurses work with people in acute mental health crisis in a range of settings, including home, respite facilities, services providing alternatives to acute admission, and inpatient services. 
Nurses who work within inpatient and crisis services require excellent generalist skills such as the ability to work with people from across the life-span with the whole range of mental health issues in the most acute phase of their presentation. 
This course uses the concept of recovery to explore nursing care for people in states of acute crisis. The course will emphasize reflection, critical thinking, self-awareness, ethical-legal deliberation, recovery concepts, models of practice and clinical expertise. Students will be expected to engage in critical reflection and analysis of practice issues and case studies. 

Course Requirements

No pre-requisites or restrictions

Course Contacts

Course Coordinator - Colette Adrian 
Course Administrator - TBC

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Master of Nursing

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Critically reflect on your experiences of nursing people in acute mental health crisis (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.3, 3.1, 4.1, 5.1, 5.2, 5.3 and 6.2)
  2. Demonstrate a critical awareness of the issues that impact on quality of care for service users who require acute care (Capability 1.1, 2.1, 3.1, 5.1 and 5.2)
  3. Demonstrate the application of ethical and legal principles in the clinical care of service users in acute crises (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.3, 3.1, 4.1, 4.2, 5.2, 5.3, 6.1, 6.2 and 6.3)
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of nurses’ contribution to the recovery journey of service users in acute crisis (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 2.1, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 4.2, 5.2, 5.3, 6.1, 6.2 and 6.3)
  5. Apply nursing models to recovery focused service innovation (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 5.1, 5.3, 6.1, 6.2 and 6.3)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Case Studies 30% Individual Coursework
Assignments 30% Individual Coursework
Presentation 40% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5
Case Studies

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 30 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 42 hours of lectures, 180 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 72 hours of work on assignments and/or test preparation.

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience

Attendance is expected at scheduled activities including lectures and tutorials to complete components of the course.
Lectures will be available as recordings. Other learning activities including tutorials may be available as recordings.
The course may include live online events including group discussions and tutorials.
The activities for the course are scheduled as block delivery.

Learning Resources

There are no required course texts. Students are expected to develop their own set of readings relevant to the themes chosen for the assignments, Recommended readings are available on Canvas

Student Feedback

At the end of every semester students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback and respond with summaries and actions.

Your feedback helps teachers to improve the course and its delivery for future students.

Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the department and faculty staff-student consultative committees.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Class Representatives

Class representatives are students tasked with representing student issues to departments, faculties, and the wider university. If you have a complaint about this course, please contact your class rep who will know how to raise it in the right channels. See your departmental noticeboard for contact details for your class reps.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption, we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and course assessment continues to meet the principles of the University’s assessment policy. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator/director, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the university website for information about how to proceed.

The delivery mode may change depending on COVID restrictions. Any changes will be communicated through Canvas.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course students may be asked to submit coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. In exceptional circumstances changes to elements of this course may be necessary at short notice. Students enrolled in this course will be informed of any such changes and the reasons for them, as soon as possible, through Canvas.