USQ LogoCourse specification
The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

CMS1008 Building Professional Nursing Attributes A

Semester 2, 2013 Online Toowoomba
Units : 0.5
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Arts
School or Department : School of Humanities and Communication
Version produced : 21 July 2014

Contents on this page


Examiner: Jill Lawrence
Moderator: Eleanor Kiernan


Co-requisite: MAT1008 and (NUR1120 or NUR1140)


First year students accessing and participating in the new university culture need to become familiar with, engage, master and demonstrate a range of new languages, skills and literacies if they are to persevere and succeed, both at university and in their future professional nursing practices. These literacies/languages include mainstream university and discipline-specific learning, academic and information literacies. This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to help students access, master and demonstrate the learning, academic, digital, critical and information literacies, principles and skills required by the academic and scientific fields generally and by the Department of Nursing in particular.


The mission of this course is for students to develop effective communication skills to succeed as learners in their higher education studies and as nursing professionals. This course presents an introduction to the learning styles and practices and information, communication and academic practices which students need to develop and demonstrate if they are to perform competently at university, in the nursing discipline and in future professional nursing settings. In the course, students reflect on and develop their learning styles and critical practices, their information literacy and academic and communication practices as well as their capacities to develop and structure academic arguments. Their capacities to identify and critically analyse as well as develop sound academic arguments are also covered. As well students will commence building their professional e-portfolio.


On completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. identify, integrate and enhance the skills, attributes and competencies they bring with them to university;
  2. demonstrate and reflect on the skills and literacies essential to ongoing academic and professional practices;
  3. read and write critically in their study and professional contexts;
  4. apply an understanding of the graduate qualities in building their personal and professional identity;
  5. demonstrate their capacity to reflect on and provide evidence of the development of their academic, learning and communication skills in their professional e- portfolio.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Learning styles/practices in relation to studentsí capacities to become familiar with and feel confident in the university culture 10.00
2. Note taking, summarising and accessing and integrating sources of information to build a paragraph and to structure, reference and support an academic argument 50.00
3. Information and research skills as well as structural and critical analysis skills 20.00
4. Reflective and critical thinking skills 10.00
5. Graduate skills and professional e-portfolios 10.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • There is no set text for this course. Students are required to have access to the course web site, which will contain all study materials.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Arnold, E & Underman Boggs, K 2003, Interpersonal relationships: professional communication for nurses, 4th edn, Saunders, St Louis.
  • Crisp, J & Taylor, C (eds) 2009, Potter and Perry's fundamentals of nursing, 3rd edn, Elsevier Australia, Chatswood, NSW.
  • Hazelwood, Z & Shakespeare-Finch, J 2010, Letís talk(listen, feel, think, act): communication for health professionals, Pearson, Sydney.
  • Kossen, C, Kiernan, E & Lawrence, J 2012, Communicating for Success, Pearson, Sydney.
  • Stein-Parbury, J 2005, Patient and person: developing interpersonal skills in nursing, 3rd edn, Churchill Livingstone, Sydney, NSW.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Directed Study 40.00
Private Study 47.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the student's responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration. For this course, normal class attendance consists of one 2 hour tutorial every 2 weeks.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To successfully complete an individual assessment item, a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks or a grade of at least C-. This statement must be read in conjunction with Statement 4 below.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without prior approval, then a penalty of 5% of the total marks available for the assignment will apply for each of the first TEN working days late, after which a zero mark will be given.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of a passing grade, students must demonstrate, via the summative assessment items, that they have achieved the required minimum standards in relation to the objectives of the course by obtaining at least 50% of the total weighted marks for all summative assessment.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks / grades obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no exam for this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Given the details under (6) above, there are no deferred exams for this course. However, if any deferred/makeup work is granted, it would have to be submitted by a date set by the examiner.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. (a) The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must lodge the assignment at the USQ. (b) All Faculty of Arts assignments on the Toowoomba campus must be lodged in the Faculty Assessment Centre on the Ground Floor of Q Block no later than 12 noon on the due date. Assignments at the Wide Bay campus must be lodged at the front office assignment slot at A block. (c) In the event that a due date for an assignment falls on a local public holiday in their area, such as a Show holiday, the due date for the assignment will be the next day. Students are to note on the assignment cover the date of the public holiday for the examiner's convenience. (d). Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be despatched to USQ within 24 hours if requested by the Examiner. (e) In accordance with University's Assignment Extension Policy (Regulation 5.6.1), the examiner of a course may grant an extension of the due date of an assignment in extenuating circumstances such as documented ill-health. (f) Students who have undertaken all of the required assessments in the course but who have failed to meet some of the specified objectives of the course within the normally prescribed time may be awarded the temporary grade: IM (Incomplete-Makeup). An IM grade will only be awarded when, in the opinion of the examiner, a student will be able to achieve the remaining objectives of the course after a period of non-directed personal study. (g) Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment or sit for an examination at the scheduled time, may apply to defer an assessment in the course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. One of the following temporary grades may be awarded: IDS (Incomplete - Deferred Examination; IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up); IDB (Incomplete - Both Deferred Examination and Deferred Make-up).

  2. If assignments in the course require the use of surveys, interviews, etc., students should be aware of the University and Faculty of Arts ethical requirements/guidelines. (The course syllabus distributed to students in the first week of teaching provides this information.)

  3. Students will require access to email, internet, and to USQ Connect for this course

  4. Students may be assigned an "Incomplete" grade to signify that all the requirements of the course have not yet been met. Students who are graded "I" can pass the course by successfully completing such additional work as prescribed by the examiner by a given date. Students who have been awarded an IM, ISM, IDM or IDB grade must access information regarding further work to be completed, in the Student Centre of U Connect. The Grades Page in the Student Centre contains information about further work to be completed. Students who have not completed the additional work to the satisfaction of the examiner by the given date will receive the appropriate Failing grade.

Other requirements

  1. If assignments in the course require the use of surveys, interviews, etc., students should be aware of the University and Faculty of Arts ethical requirements/guidelines. (The course syllabus distributed to students in the first week of teaching provides this information.)

  2. If assignments in the course require the use of surveys, interviews, etc., students should be aware of the University and Faculty of Arts ethical requirements/guidelines. (The course syllabus distributed to students in the first week of teaching provides this information.)