GER502 End of Life and Palliative Care Issues in Ageing (8)

This subject will examine the complex bio/psycho/social/ethical/legal and political aspects of end of life care of older people and contemporary issues facing health professionals in this field. A diversity of social and cultural interpretations of death and dying will inform study of palliative care models within community, hospital and residential settings. Topics will include experiences of diagnosis of a terminal illness, person-centred care in palliation, communication about death and dying, working with families, professional self-care, duty of care and professional ethics. The subject also offers a specific focus on palliation in dementia care.


Session 1 (30)
Albury-Wodonga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: GER502. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • Describe and explain complex palliative care and end of life issues for older people within a social framework.
  • Explore and articulate their own personal, spiritual and cultural values on death and dying, and evaluate the influence of their beliefs and values on practice.
  • Analyse and critique contemporary models of palliative care applicable to different practice settings.
  • Interpret and apply ethics to practice in end of life care.
  • Apply person-centred care principles in end of life care.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Bio/psycho/social aspects of end of life care
  • Values, ethics and legal aspects of end of life care
  • Social and cultural interpretations of death and dying
  • Experiences of diagnosis and care of a terminal illness
  • Clinical and participatory decision-making in terminal illnesses and end of life care
  • Models of palliative care in community, hospital, hospice and residential care
  • Palliation in dementia care
  • Pain assessment and management in palliative care, including in dementia care
  • Professional self care in palliative work
  • Person-centred approaches to end of life care
  • Family carers' participation and needs in end of life care

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of GER502 in Session 1 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Concept of a 'good death'
Biopsychosocial approach - case study

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.