Credit points


Campus offering

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  • Term Mode
  • Semester 2Multi-mode
  • Term Mode
  • ACU Term 2Online Unscheduled
  • ACU Term 4Online Unscheduled



Unit rationale, description and aim

Leaders and managers in health care are expected to have a range of skills necessary to meet the challenges involved in leading their staff through diverse and dynamic workplace environments. These challenges include ensuring patient safety, managing staff productivity, performance and retention, as well as taking lead responsibility for quality improvement and cost efficiencies.

This unit is necessary for students to be able to meet those types of challenges. Students will be supported in developing an advanced range of theory-based knowledge and skills that guide and shape practice improvement. This will be achieved through creative solutions and facilitative processes that promote staff engagement, empowerment and retention, support team cohesion and collaboration and are more likely to result in a safe and high-quality healthcare environment.

Facilitative leadership, coaching and mentoring is based on mutual respect, trust and value alignment resulting in collective responsibility for patient safety, and fosters innovation in practice by promoting creativity and critical thinking.

This unit aims to prepare students with advanced facilitative leadership, coaching and mentoring knowledge and skills that are required to build their capacity to apply a systems approach in facilitating, coaching and mentoring staff in working effectively together for the common good in a variety of healthcare settings

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

Learning Outcome NumberLearning Outcome DescriptionRelevant Graduate Capabilities
LO1Critically evaluate models/principles or theories of coaching, mentoring and facilitation to demonstrate an understanding of how workplace motivators and demotivators can impact on the health care environmentGC1, GC2, GC3, GC7, GC9, GC11
LO2Critically analyse the skills required for effective coaching, mentoring and facilitation that underpin a culture of safety in working together for optimal outcomesGC1, GC2, GC4, GC7, GC8, GC9, GC10, GC11, GC12
LO3Develop and apply advanced knowledge of the key skills and attributes required for effective facilitation, coaching and mentoring within a community of practice that leads to quality improvement in a healthcare settingGC1, GC2, GC6, GC7, GC8, GC9, GC11


 Topics will include:

  • The theoretic basis for leadership, mentoring and coaching
  • Exploring the theoretical basis for coaching, mentoring and facilitation from a leadership perspective
  • Coaching, mentoring and facilitation – roles/responsibilities
  • Facilitative leadership, coaching, mentoring skills
  • Applying systems thinking in facilitative leadership
  • Motivation/demotivation
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Utilising a systems approach to support work-based activities
  • Plans, contracts and agreements
  • Capacity building
  • Developing communities of practice
  • Creating a supportive learning environment
  • Diversity and inclusivity
  • Professional development, career and succession planning
  • Evaluation
  • Assessing and evaluating organisational culture and change
  • Staff engagement and empowerment
  • Leadership challenges and opportunities in coaching, mentoring and facilitation
  • The future of redesign in health service delivery.

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

ACU Online

This unit uses an active learning approach to support students in the exploration of knowledge essential to the discipline. Students are provided with choice and variety in how they learn. Students are encouraged to contribute to asynchronous weekly discussions. Active learning opportunities provide students with opportunities to practice and apply their learning in situations similar to their future professions. Activities encourage students to bring their own examples to demonstrate understanding, application and engage constructively with their peers. Students receive regular and timely feedback on their learning, which includes information on their progress.


Modes of delivery in this unit include class-based lectures and tutorials while the classroom learning environment provides opportunities for students to collaborate with peers and lecturers in face-to-face mode to reflect on individual values and analyse group values in relation to the role of the leader as coach, mentor and facilitator. Active collaboration with peers through group discussion, debate, role plays and seminar presentations will support students in evaluating group interventionist techniques applicable to coaching, mentoring and facilitating within a community of practice. In developing a community of practice for quality improvement, principles of mutual respect, trust, group diversity and inclusivity are promoted.

Assessment strategy and rationale

To pass this unit, students are expected to submit all assessment tasks. In addition, students must achieve a cumulative grade of at least 50% across all assessments. The assessment strategy used allows for the progressive development of knowledge and skills necessary for the student to be able to analyse and evaluate models of care which they can apply to redesigning health service delivery. The assessment tasks for this unit are designed for the student to demonstrate their achievement of each learning outcome, allowing the student to graduate with the knowledge and skill to be able to implement redesign strategies and models for optimal health outcomes.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning Outcomes

Assessment Task 1: Reflective Essay

Enables students to reflect on the role of the leader as coach, mentor and facilitator and the impact of such leadership skill on quality improvement within a healthcare environment, via a written reflection.


LO1, LO2

Assessment Task 2: Case Study

Enables students to gain experience in discussion and analysis in an online format



Assessment Task 3: Report

Enables students to develop a facilitation, coaching or mentoring plan or agreement that incorporates an evaluation process


LO1, LO2, LO3

Representative texts and references

Required text(s)

Schwarz, R. M. (2017). The skilled facilitator : a comprehensive resource for consultants, facilitators, coaches, and trainers (Third edition.). Jossey-Bass.

Please note: the required text is available as an eBook within the unit content.

Recommended references

Clegg, S. R., Pitsis, T., Mount, M., & Clegg, S. (2022). Managing and organizations : an introduction to theory and practice. (Sixth edition / Stewart R. Clegg, Tyrone S. Pitsis, Matthew Mount.). SAGE.

Gopee, N. (2018). Mentoring and supervision in healthcare (4th). Sage

Hale, R. L., & Phillips, C. A. (2019). Mentoring up: A grounded theory of nurse‐to‐nurse mentoring. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 28(1-2), 159–172.

Hu, S., Chen, W., Hu, H., Huang, W., Chen, J., & Hu, J. (2022). Coaching to develop leadership for healthcare managers: a mixed-method systematic review protocol. Systematic Reviews, 11(1), 67–67.

Lussier, R. N., & Achua, C. F. (2023). Leadership : theory, application, & skill development (7th Edition.). SAGE.

Manley, K., & Titche, A. (2017). Facilitation skills: The catalyst for increased effectiveness in consultant practice and clinical system leadership. Educational Action Research, 5(1), 1 - 24.

Wikström, E., Severin, J., Jonsdottir, I. H., & Akerstrom, M. (2021). Process facilitators shifting between the support and expert roles in a complex work environment intervention in the Swedish healthcare sector. Journal of Health Organization and Management, 36(9), 25–47.

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