BSc Nursing Practice (CPD) / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Principles and Practice of Cancer Care - Level 6

Course unit fact file
Unit code NURS9346C
Credit rating 20
Unit level Cont Education/Prof Developmen
Teaching period(s) Variable teaching patterns
Available as a free choice unit? No


Every two minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with cancer. Indeed, 1 in 2 people will receive a cancer diagnosis at some point during their lifetimes. There are around 367,000 new cancer cases in the UK every year, that's around 1,000 every day (2015-2017). In females in the UK, there were more than 179,000 new cancer cases in 2017. In males in the UK, there were around 187,000 new cancer cases in 2017 (Cancer Research UK, 2021).

It is widely appreciated that cancer often evokes feelings of fear and dread, giving rise to a complex range of physical, psychological, and psychosocial problems. There is growing recognition that individuals in receipt of a cancer diagnosis need specialist nursing support when adjusting to their diagnosis and accepting subsequent treatments. It is acknowledged that cancer nurses with appropriate training and expertise should be integral members of all MDT’s. During the course, you will be given the opportunity to develop, extend and integrate your existing knowledge and skills in relation to the delivery of care to this client group.

The unit will enable you to explore a range of issues affecting the organization and delivery of person-centred cancer care across institutional and community settings, enhancing your knowledge and skills in relation to the facilitation of the therapeutic frame within cancer nursing care, multidisciplinary team working, holistic symptom management and effective communication with patients and families living with a cancer diagnosis. Current treatment options and research will be discussed alongside broader concepts such as assessment, personalised-care, quality of life issues and supportive care.


  • To develop the student’s understanding of the physical, psychological, spiritual and social impact of cancer on the patient and family
  • To increase awareness of the different ways in which the patient and family can be supported through the various stages of the cancer journey
  • To develop analytic and reflective skills, in order to improve clinical decision-making and enhance patient outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

  • Critically analyse and evaluate the impact of cancer and its treatment on the patient and family.
  • Critically analyse and evaluate different models of cancer care delivery and consider their impact on the patient and family.

Intellectual skills

  • Critically evaluate research in order to provide evidence-based care within the context of your own professional cancer practice.
  • Critically examine how legal, ethical, political and professional frameworks influence professional practice in the cancer setting.
  • Critically analyse the concepts of supportive and palliative care.

Practical skills

  • Use evidence-based care to promote and provide safe practice when caring for patients undergoing cancer treatment.
  • Devise strategies to provide supportive and palliative care for patients with cancer and their families.
  • Communicate developments in practice to the multidisciplinary team.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Reflect on your own knowledge and skills in the provision of cancer care and critically consider ways to facilitate their improvement.
  • By critically analyzing and evaluating evidence, identify how effective cancer care can be promoted.
  • Exercise responsibility for personal learning.                                                      

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written assignment (inc essay) 100%

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 42
Tutorials 2
Independent study hours
Independent study 156

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Joanne Timpson Unit coordinator

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