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Nursing - Intellectual Disability Nursing

Nurses in intellectual disability (ID) work in a broad range of services including long-stay settings, community, day-care, care of the older person, child and adolescent. Nurses in ID have a diversity of roles, on a continuum ranging from intensive physical nursing of persons with a severe degree of disability to supportive guidance in the management of children, adults and older persons.

Evidence of health needs for people with an intellectual disability highlight the clear need for the nurse in intellectual disability services to have an intellectual disability qualification. The rationale for this part-time Master’s degree/postgraduate diploma is to facilitate the upskilling of qualified nurses working in this critical area.

The philosophy which underpins this programme is grounded in values and beliefs relating to the nature of four fundamental philosophical nursing concepts, namely; nursing, environment, person and health.

This programme is designed to provide the nurse with the opportunity to become knowledgeable, informed, reflective and to develop his/her professional self so that he/she can be empowered and enabled to fully undertake the role and responsibility of nursing care, within the intellectual disability services. The exploration, application analysis, evaluation and synthesis of nursing theory, evidence-based practice and research support this aim. The student will be guided to strive for excellence in delivering care, to practice with self-awareness and compassion, to high ethical, legal, and clinical standards from a strong evidence base, within the profession of nursing.

On successful completion of the programme, graduates will be able to critically examine the supports and barriers that influence the ability of people with an intellectual disability to integrate into their community. They will also be able to critically evaluate the specialist knowledge and skills required to care for service users in the intellectual disability service. Furthermore, they will have attained a threshold of practitioner skills as required by registration and professional bodies, in particular An Bord Altranais/the Nursing Board.

Entry requirements

Applicants will have a BSc in Nursing/Midwifery or in any discipline of Nursing (General Nursing, Midwifery, Public Health Nursing, Intellectual Disability Nursing or Psychiatric Nursing), plus a minimum of three years’ post-registration clinical nursing experience, two of which should be immediately prior to application.

Duration

2 years part-time

Careers or further progression

The student who completes year 1 of the programme can exit and receive a postgraduate diploma, or they can also progress to year 2 and upon completion receive a Master’s degree. Graduates from the MSc may be in a position to progress to doctoral studies at AIT and elsewhere.

Career Prospects

On successful completion of the programme, graduates will be able to critically examine the supports and barriers that influence the ability of people with an intellectual disability to integrate into their community. They will also be able to critically evaluate the specialist knowledge and skills required to care for service users in the intellectual disability service. Furthermore, they will have attained a threshold of practitioner skills as required by registration and professional bodies, in particular An Bord Altranais agus Cnaimhseachais na hEireann/the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland.

Further Study

The student who completes year 1 of the programme can exit and receive a postgraduate diploma, or they can also progress to year 2 and upon completion receive a Master’s degree. Graduates from the MSc may be in a position to progress to doctoral studies at AIT and elsewhere.

Subjects taught

Year 1

Primary Health and Social Care, Advanced Management and Leadership Skills, The Evolving Role of the Nurse in the ID Service, Contemporary Issues in Intellectual Disability Nursing, Health-related Research Clinical Practice Module

Year 2

Critical Ethical and Legal Issues in Intellectual Disability, Advanced Health Research, Dissertation

Comment

Course Award:Master of Science/Post Graduate Diploma
Course NFQ Level:Level 9

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