Reflections on a Bachelor of Nursing program: Embedding Indigenous Australian cultural competence as pedagogy

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Indigenous Australian cultural competence has been well supported by Universities Australia (2014). In the profession of nursing cultural competence as pedagogy is seen to provide opportunities for health professionals to reflect on their sense of culture, attitude and potential biases with the view of adapting their practising to meet the demands of individual clients (Ranzijn, McConnochie & Nolan, 2009). Often short course are implemented in curriculum programs and healthcare services with limited long term benefits to the health professional and the client (Mooney et al, 2005). It has been evidenced that cultural competence needs to be clearly embedded within curriculum to enable best outcomes (Nash et al, 2006) Historically Indigenous Australian content within the Bachelor of Nursing program at a regional university in New South Wales experienced high attrition and poor Student Experience Evaluations with students citing the disconnect between Indigenous Australian content and general nursing subjects in a Bachelor of Nursing program. In 2014, during a curriculum review period the Bachelor of Nursing curriculum review team deemed it necessary to embed Indigenous Australian cultural competence across the three years of the program. Indigenous Australian cultural competence was embedded within a three year Bachelor of Nursing program through the method of constructive alignments. By embracing the Indigenous Education Strategy (CSU, 2012) and National Best Practice Framework for Indigenous Cultural Competency in Australian Universities (2011), reconciliation and promotion of the knowledge, understanding of cultures in Indigenous Australian peoples was central to the curriculum. This enabled content and skills necessary for the journey of Indigenous Australian cultural competence to be evidenced in all three years of the program. Development involved consultation with a number of stakeholders, internal endorsement through the Indigenous Board of Studies and formal accreditation through the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council. This paper will discuss the academics lived experiences, reflections and will be useful to other health programs interested in scaffolded Indigenous Australian content throughout a program of study.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
EventNational Centre for Cultural Competence: Cultural Competence & the Higher Education Sector: Dilemmas, Policies & Practice - University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Duration: 04 Apr 201805 Apr 2018
Conference number: 2


ConferenceNational Centre for Cultural Competence
Abbreviated titleCultural Competence
Internet address


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