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2010/1 Module Catalogue
Module Provider: Health & Social Care Short Name: ADVCOMMSKILL
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: ARBER AM Dr (HSC)
Number of credits: 15 Number of ECTS credits: 7.5
Module Availability
Please contact the module administrator
Assessment Pattern
Summative Assessment:
This consists of an audio recording of an assessment interview (or patient consultation) conducted after the three day course. On the basis of this interview the student will write a critique of their communication skills and an analytical reflection supported by researched-based literature (2,500-3000 words).

Module Overview
Module Aims
• Critically evaluate the ability to elicit and respond to patients’ problems, worries and concerns
• Critically reflect on the effectiveness of one’s communication skills
• Implement effective strategies to enhance the emotional well being of patients and their carers
Learning Outcomes
On completing this module the student should be able to:

Subject knowledge and understanding
• Develop an in-depth knowledge of concepts and frameworks of interpersonal and intra-personal communication skills.
• Explore the evidence base of effective communication skills and the barriers and facilitators to such skills in different health care contexts
• Demonstrate knowledge of equality and diversity in relation to communication

Cognitive skills
• Critically analyse the ability to tailor complex information to the needs of patients and carers
• Reflect upon and critically appraise one’s own and others’ communication skills

Practical skills
• Demonstrate skill in facilitating patients’ expression of their concerns
• Utilise effective communication skills in building rapport and developing a relationship with the patients and carers
• Give constructive feedback to participants during experiential learning

Key/transferable skills
• Reflect on personal skills when interacting with patients and families
• Appreciate the need for professional support and clinical supervision
• Work co-operatively and promote active learning
Module Content
What are Advanced Communication Skills?
Breaking bad news
Handling difficult questions
Interviewing skills
Facilitating skills
Distancing stragegies
Handling difficult emotions eg denial, anger, anxiety
Assessing and tailoring information to individual needs
Communication within the multidisciplinary team
Support and clinical supervision
Culture and communication
Barriers to communication
Equality and diversity
Methods of Teaching/Learning
Taught: 30 hrs
Self-directed: 150 hrs
Selected Texts/Journals

Burnard P. & Gill P. (2008) Culture, communication and nursing. Harlow, Pearson

Egan G. (2007) The Skilled Helper. (8th edn.) Brooks/Cole, CA

Fallowfield L, Jenkins V. (2004) Communicating sad, bad and difficult news in medicine. The Lancet. 363, pp. 312-19.

Lloyd M. & Bor R. (2009) Communication skills for medicine. (3rd edn.) Churchill Livingstone, London

O’Hagan K. (2001) Cultural competence in the caring professions. Jessica Kingsley, London.

Silverman J. & Kurtz S. (2005) Skills for Communicating with Patients. (2nd edn.) Blackwell, Oxford.

Tate P. ( 2006) The doctor’s communication handbook. Radcliffe, Oxford.

Wilkinson S M, Leliopoulou C, Gambles M, Roberts A. (2003) Can intensive three day programmes improve nurses’ communication skills in cancer care? Psycho-Oncology. 12, pp.1-13.


Journals and websites

British Medical Journal
Palliative Medicine
Patient Education and Counselling
Journal of Advanced Nursing
International Journal of Nursing Studies
International Journal of Palliative Nursing
Psycho Oncology
Social Science and Medicine

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