MSc Advanced Leadership for Professional Practice (Nursing)

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Enhancing Neonatal Nursing Practice

Course unit fact file
Unit code NURS63190
Credit rating 30
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Variable teaching patterns
Available as a free choice unit? No


This course is designed to offer experienced neonatal nurse practitioners who are qualified in specialty the opportunity to enhance their practice. The theoretical component is designed to cover a systems based approach in order to prepare practitioners to work at an enhanced level within clinical teams. The philosophy of the course is to enable neonatal practitioners to remain as nurses and provide a clinical leadership role within this specialty.


  • Build upon knowledge and competencies gained during the Intensive Care of the new-born unit and subsequent practice in order to develop increased levels of skills and knowledge to support the infant during the resuscitation process, pre-transport stabilisation period and enhance holistic neonatal nursing practice throughout the infant’s hospitalisation.
  • To develop higher levels of clinical decision making while recognising current parameters of practice and accountability. The nurse will be able to monitor and improve standards of care through supervision of practice and clinical audit, providing skilled professional leadership and the development of holistic practice through research.

Teaching and learning methods

  • Discussions
  • Taught sessions
  • Guest/specialist speakers
  • Group work
  • Practice learning
  • Skills teaching, using simulation and teaching models

Knowledge and understanding

  • Apply a systematic understanding of new knowledge and gain a critical awareness of existing neonatal nursing practice to justifying future research.
  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of the need to share knowledge, skills and expertise contributing to the development of research based neonatal care.

Intellectual skills

  • Critically evaluate current best evidence and be at the forefront in the development and dissemination of research relative to care of the neonate and family.
  • Act as an advocate for the infant and his/her family, supporting and empowering the parents to contribute to decisions about care options for their child in complex situations.

Practical skills

  • Demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate neonatal management holistically while focusing accurately on complex issues.
  • Anticipate and address problems using creative management strategies.
  • Promote, integrate and critically evaluate strategies  which meet the needs of the infant and family in the immediate post-resuscitation
  • Evaluate critically the potential sequelae arising from the care and management received by the infant in the post delivery stabilisation period.
  • Systematically analyse the organisation of care provided to the infant in the post resuscitation / pre transport stabilisation period.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Develop self-direction and originality whilst critically appraising personal practice and maintaining high standards of personal performance.
  • Critically explore the ethical and legal dilemmas and be able to discuss and defend management strategies.
  • Integrate into the neonatal team and be instrumental in facilitating critical evaluations of standards and quality of management using initiative and personal responsibility.
  • Be instrumental in clinical decision making in complex situations.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written exam 50%
Written assignment (inc essay) 50%

Feedback methods

Students will normally have the opportunity to receive feedback on formative work submitted prior to the summative assessment. Other feedback opportunities will also be available in class and online discussion boards. Online feedback is provided in Grademark. Provisional feedback based on internal marking will be made available prior to the Exam Board on the basis that these marks are yet to be ratified at the Exam Board and therefore may be subject to change. A standard feedback mechanism in Grademark is utilised across all postgraduate programmes within the School which provides detailed and constructive feedback on each component and aspect of assessment and identifies areas of strength and those aspects which could be enhanced.

Student feedback is obtained through open discussion forums on blackboard, in class discussions, via formal University unit evaluation forms and also qualitative, in house evaluations at the end of the unit. 

Recommended reading

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 73
Tutorials 4
Independent study hours
Independent study 223

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Tracey Jones Unit coordinator

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