1 x 10-hour independent study weekly
1 x 4-hour on-line exercises weekly
4 x 1-hour on-line tutorials per semester
2 x 2-hour pbls per semester
1 x 1-hour case study once-only
Admission into BHA-Bachelor of Healthy Ageing
Assignment(s); On-line Tutorial participation.
Topic description
Dying and death are inevitable - but how well prepared are we to support those around us who are at the end of their life? What might constitute a healthy end of life or dying well? This topic provides students opportunities to explore and develop an understanding of death and dying as a normal part of life. Exploration and understanding will be framed in the context of healthy ageing and includes patterns and causes of end of life, the taboo of death, spiritual, emotional and physical dimensions to dying, resilience and wellbeing for older people and finally, current societal and health responses to end-of-life opportunities, issues and problems. At the end of this topic, the student will be in the position to make an informed judgement to the question: Is "dying well" contradictory?
Educational aims
The aims of this topic are:

  • Introduce the field of end of life care as an important part of healthy ageing and death as a normal part of life.

  • Provide students with an opportunity to develop an awareness of how and when older people die.

  • Provide an overview of the dimensions of resilience and wellbeing at the end of life

  • Allow students to evaluate current social and health response to end-of-life and associated issues and problems.

  • Provide students with a range of opportunities to learn how to respond and support an older person who is facing the end-of-life.

Expected learning outcomes
On successful completion of this topic students will be able to:

  • Identify the 5 major causes of death in Australia, or a relevant jurisdiction and summarise and describe the major changes in the epidemiology of death in recent history

  • Summarise the taboo of death through discussion of the different ways people refer to end of life and dying

  • Describe the various dimensions to end of life (spiritual, physical, psychosocial)

  • Recognize end of life resilience and wellbeing for older people

  • Describe foundational end-of-life communication techniques

  • Identify the current social and health care responses to end-of-life care

  • Locate key resources for designing ongoing learning around responding to older people at the end of life.