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Graduate Certificate in Aged Care Nursing

  • Graduate Certificate

A Graduate Certificate in Aged Care Nursing is an investment in your future and will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to ensure better outcomes for your patients and progress your career, leading to opportunities in clinical education, management and specialist nursing roles. It is designed to empower nurses to become clinical and professional leaders required for the predicted reforms in health and aged care.

Key details

Degree Type
Graduate Certificate
1 - 2 years part-time
Course Code
10 003 2056 (January 2020 intake)
Study Mode
Intake Months
Jan, Apr, Jul, Sep
Domestic Fees
$9,880 per year / $9,880 total

About this course

Studying aged care nursing with ACN will provide you with the principles of aged care nursing practice in order to improve your knowledge and skills for the provision and coordination of evidenced based patient centred nursing care for the older person. The aim is to encourage professional and ethical understanding of clinical practice development for the improvement of patient outcomes as highlighted in our white paper. Our course is written by specialist nurses, for nurses. Our students are supported by a team of clinical experts, working within the speciality. Our unique blend of electives allow students to further explore a specific area of interest related to areas such as continence and wound management.

The Graduate Certificate in Aged Care Nursing studies the complex needs of the older person being cared for within diverse health care environments. The aim of this course is to strengthen and develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes of nurses caring for the older adult. The course provides an advanced grounding in methods of research, in addition to developing the theoretical and practical aspects of management, clinical practice and education in aged care nursing. The single units of study in this course draw upon the student’s nursing experience in aged care and combine this experience with theory, current research and best practice guidelines to enhance the student’s specialist knowledge and skills, critical thinking and analysis abilities and clinical decision-making within aged care environments.

Entry requirements

Admission to Graduate Certificate courses is based on academic merit and selection. In addition, applicants must satisfy any prerequisites or additional requirements specified for particular courses, including ACN’s general eligibility criteria.

All applicants seeking admission are required to:

  • hold a Bachelor of Nursing or registered nurse* equivalent qualification
  • be currently registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) or the equivalent registering authority in your country of origin
  • have a minimum of one year postgraduate experience
  • be currently employed in an appropriate clinical setting.

*For some Graduate Certificate units of study, consideration may be given for applicants who are not registered nurses on an individual basis.

Clinical placements

Anyone applying for an ACN course that includes a clinical placement must provide evidence of compliance documents at the time of application.

Applications for enrolment will not be progressed until all relevant documentation has been received by Customer Services.

Each Australian state and territory has its own clinical placement documentation requirements. Further details are available on our Clinical Placement Information page, click on the tab for your particular state or territory for information on specific requirements.

Individual placement providers may need additional documentation. If you are required to provide this then you will be contacted by the Clinical Placement Officer following enrolment.

ACN negotiates with health care facilities to secure clinical placements. ACN will make every effort to secure clinical placements within the timeframe indicated in the course outline, however applicants are advised that provision and location of clinical placements is dependent on the availability of placements within the health facility.

As placements are difficult to secure, once confirmed these cannot be negotiated unless there is unforeseen extenuating circumstances. Applicants are not to arrange their own clinical placements with a clinical facility under any circumstances. ACN reserves the right to change clinical placements if necessary.

Course Structure

  • 3
  • 1
  • 4

Study locations


What you will learn

This course is designed to develop specific learning outcomes. Students will:

  • integrate specialist knowledge, assessment skills and information to support an improved standard of client care
  • develop enhanced clinical decision making skills using multiple modes of enquiry and collaborative approaches
  • establish and maintain effective therapeutic relationships with aged care clients, families, professional colleagues and stakeholders
  • demonstrate professional leadership and educational skills
  • critically analyse literature and develop evidence based nursing practice in aged care
  • promote the professional aged care nurse’s role within the multi-disciplinary team
  • advocate for clients within all aged care environments.

Course structure

Core subjects: 

Elective subjects (choose one elective from the following)​

*Continence Management (045) requires 40 hours clinical placement.

Disclaimer: Fees vary dependent on subject electives chosen