Credit points


Campus offering

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MIDW100 Clinical Midwifery Practice 1 OR MDGE101 Introduction to Midwifery Practice

Teaching organisation

150 hours of focused learning.

Unit rationale, description and aim

This unit extends and integrates learning from MIDW100 Clinical Midwifery Practice 1 or MDGE101 Introduction to Midwifery Practice, through simulation laboratories and supervised clinical practice, with a focus on normal labour and birth. Students have the opportunity to develop skills to support women during labour and birth and the immediate period following birth in collaboration with midwives and the health care team. The common interventions in labour and birth will be examined within the simulated environment to build confidence and skills prior to the clinical component of the unit. Students will continue to participate in and learn from the Continuity of Care Experience.

This unit is required by students to assist them to develop knowledge and skills to support women during labour and birth and the immediate period following birth, in collaboration with midwives and the health care team.

The aim of this second Clinical Midwifery Practice unit is to provide the foundations on which clinical assessments are based, and model the way in which students will contextualize their theoretical knowledge through clinical practice.

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.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - demonstrate comprehensive assessment, planning and provision of safe evidence-based woman-centred care during labour, birthing and the immediate period following birth in collaboration with women, midwives and the health care teams; (GA1, GA7) 

LO2 - apply legal and ethical frameworks, policies and procedures to safe care of women and their babies during labour, birthing and the immediate period following birth within their scope of practice; (GA3, GA5) 

LO3 - reflect on their learning to initiate and evaluate effective learning and self-care strategies for themselves and others in relation to labour and birthing; (GA4, GA5) 

LO4 - extend their professional portfolio, demonstrating development towards the NMBA (2018) Midwifery Standards for Practice  using examples of skill development and midwifery practice in labour and birth. (GA4, GA5, GA9) 

Graduate attributes

GA1 - demonstrate respect for the dignity of each individual and for human diversity 

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

NMBA (2018) Midwife Standards for Practice developed in this unit are: 

Standard/Attributes/CriteriaLearning Outcomes

Standard 1: Promotes health and wellbeing through evidence-based midwifery practice 

1.2; 1.3


Standard 2: Engages in professional relationships and respectful partnerships  

2.1; 2.3 

LO1; LO2 

Standard 3: Demonstrates the capability and accountability for midwifery practice  

3.1; 3.2; 3.3; 3.4; 3.5; 3.6; 3.7; 3.8

LO1; LO2; LO3; LO4

Standard 4: Undertakes comprehensive assessments  

4.1; 4.2; 4.3; 4.4

LO1; LO4

Standard 5: Develops plans for midwifery practice  

5.1; 5.2; 5.3; 5.4 

LO1; LO2 

Standard 6: Provides safety and quality in midwifery practice  

6.2; 6.3; 6.3 


Standard 7: Evaluates outcomes to improve midwifery practice  

7.2; 7.3 

LO1; LO3


Topics will include: 

Legal and professional practice 

Scope of practice 

Consultation and collaboration including referral 

Informed consent 

Documentation including health informatics and health technology 

Medication knowledge and administration 


Midwifery as primary practice 

Assessment skills  

Interviewing and history taking techniques for women in labour 

Abdominal examination  

Vaginal examination  

Intermittent and continuous fetal monitoring 

Physical assessment of maternal health 


Midwifery skills 

Active birth positions and movement during labour 

Safe use of water for labour and birth 

Non-pharmacological therapeutics e.g. massage, intradermal water injections 

Facilitation of normal birth including third stage 

Perineal assessment and perineal suturing 

Skin to skin initiation of breastfeeding 

Preliminary debriefing of labour and birth experience 


Interventions during labour and birth (collaborative and autonomous) 

Induction and augmentation  

Urinary catheter insertion 


Epidural, spinal anaesthesia 

Instrumental birth 

Caesarean section, including preparation and care during recovery 

Maternal and neonatal resuscitation techniques 


Risk assessment, prevention and management 

Intra and postpartum haemorrhage 


Pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics 

Revise IM, Sc and IV and neonatal injections 

Epidural medications 


Local anaesthetics 

Review IV management and fluid balance 

Blood transfusion 

Drug calculations 


Midwifery as primary health care  

Cultural safety 

Involving the women and their families in decision making 


Reflective and ethical practice 

Maintaining professional portfolio 

Reflective practice  

Identifying and responding to own and others’ learning needs  

Evidence-based practice 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Modes of delivery in this unit include group learning activities such as skill demonstrations, simulated practice, online classroom, supervisied clinical practice, participation in the the Continuity of Care Experience (CCE) and self-directed study.  Consistent with adult learning principles, the teaching and learning strategies used within these modes of delivery will provide students with foundational knowledge and skills relevant to professional nursing practice.  These strategies will also support students in meeting the aim, learning outcomes and graduate attributes of the unit and the broader course learning outcomes. Learning and teaching strategies will reflect respect for the individual as an independent learner. Students will be expected to take responsibility for their learning and to participate actively with peers.  


Students undertaking a tertiary qualification need skills to assist them in managing their individual learning. Feedback and effective self-reflection are required to identify what is being done well, what requires additional work and to identify progress toward required learning outcomes. Located in the second year of the programme, this clinical unit assists students to link theory with its application and to build life-long learning skills. Group learning activities are utilised to convey content and central principles while laboratories and simulation deliver interactive learning sessions which assist students to apply theory to clinical practice and build self-reflection skills. The supervised clinical practicum of 120 hours provides a safe environment where students can provide assisted woman-centred care essential for successful graduate practice. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment items consistent with University assessment requirements and policy will be used to ensure students achieve the unit learning outcomes and attain the graduate attributes. 


Assessment methods will primarily measure the student’s understanding of the discipline-specific knowledge inherent in this unit and its application within a professional context. An on-campus assessment of a clinical skill will provide the opportunity for feedback for the student in a safe environment reflective of assessment in clinical practice where professional competency is a requirement for the role of a midwife. The continued development of the professional midwifery portfolio will allow the students to showcase their learning experiences (clinical and CCE) in a professional manner ensuring that documentation meets the professional legal requirements for practice experiences. Students must achieve a pass grade in both assessment items to pass this unit. 


These assessments are required to build student knowledge and skills which, by the conclusion of this programme, will enable the student to graduate as a safe and effective midwife.   

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

On-campus Practice Competency 

Enables students to demonstrate competency in professional behavour, communication skills and safe and effective implementation of midwifery skills and knowledge.


1, 2

1, 3, 5, 7 

Professional Midwifery Portfolio 

Enables students to showcase their clinical experiences in a professional manner, inclusive of the Continuity of Care Experience, ensuring that documentation meets the professional and legal requirements for practice.


1, 2, 3, 4

1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9 

Representative texts and references

Andre, K., & Heartfield, M. (2011). Nursing and midwifery portfolios: Evidence of continuing competence. Chatswood, NSW: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier. 


Australian College of Midwives [ACM]. (2014). National Midwifery Guidelines for Consultation and Referral. Canberra: Australian College of Midwives. 


Bryant, B., & Knights, K. (2015). Pharmacology for health professionals (4th ed.). Chatswood,: Elsevier.  


Johnson, R., & Taylor, W. (2016). Skills for midwifery practice (4th ed.). Sydney: Churchill Livingstone. 

MacDonald, S., & Magill-Cuerden, J. (Eds.) (2011). Mayes’ midwifery (14th ed.). Edinburgh: Bailliere Tindall. 


Marshall, J., & Raynor, M. (2010). Advancing skills in midwifery practice. London: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier. 


Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia [NMBA]. (2010). National competency standards for the midwife. Melbourne: Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. 


Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia [NMBA]. (2013). Code of professional conduct for midwives in Australia. Melbourne: Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. 


Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia [NMBA]. (2013). Code of ethics for midwives in Australia. Melbourne: Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. 


Page, L., & McCandlish, R. (2006). The new midwifery science and sensitivity in practice (2nd ed.). United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone. 


Pairman, S., Pincombe, J., Thorogood, C., & Tracey, S. (2015). Midwifery: Preparation for practice ( 3rd ed.). Sydney: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier. 


Stables, D., & Rankin, J. (Eds.). (2010). Physiology in childbearing (3rd ed.). Sydney: Elsevier. 


The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists [RANSZCOG]. (2014). Intrapartum Fetal surveillance; clinical guideline. (3rd ed). East Melbourne: Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists. 


Walsh, D., & Downe, S. (Eds.). (2010). Essential midwifery practice intrapartum care. Chichester UK: Wiley-Blackwell. 


Walsh, D. (2011). Evidence and skills for normal labour and birth: A Guide for midwives (2nd ed.). Abingdon, N.Y. Routledge. 

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