NURS 7053 Foundations of Antenatal and Birth Care

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 401347

Coordinator Michelle Eveleigh Opens in new window

Description This subject provides students with an understanding of the biological and physiological aspects of human reproduction, pregnancy, labour and birth. Emphasis will be placed on the normal maternal anatomy and physiology of pregnancy, labour and birth and applications of skills in the Clinical Practice Unit. Students will apply a primary health care approach to working with women and their families during pregnancy and childbirth. Students will consider psychosocial and cultural aspects of pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding, and the role of the midwife in maintaining a woman and family focus within a continuity-of-care model. Childbirth in our culturally diverse maternity health system will be explored, analysed and discussed. The experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women across health services will also be examined. Concepts introduced during the intensive week will be covered in greater complexity across the semester.

School Nursing & Midwifery

Discipline Midwifery

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 1 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject

Co-requisite(s) NURS 7054


Students must be enrolled in 4775 Graduate Diploma in Midwifery.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify and describe the normal anatomical and physiological changes and processes related to growth and development of the fetus and relate this to stages of pregnancy, labour and birth.
  2. Explain and undertake screening, assessment and care of women during pregnancy, labour and birth.
  3. Apply knowledge of the biological, physiological, psychological and social needs of women pre-conceptually, during pregnancy, labour and birth to facilitate an optimal experience for the woman.
  4. Critically analyse and explain the role of the midwife, within a continuity of care framework, in the provision of care to a woman and her family including knowledge of the legal and ethical issues related to the woman.
  5. Critically analyse the impact of birth on a woman�fs sense of self and her emotional, psychological, social and cultural needs and her family.
  6. Apply knowledge of the principles of adult learning, primary health care and public health policy to facilitate opportunities for health promotion with the woman, her family and community, particularly relating to culturally safe practices for Aboriginal and Torres Strait

Subject Content

History of Midwifery
1. Midwifery as a Profession
- The ICM Definition of A midwife
- The philosophy of Midwifery
- woman centred care/The midwife woman relationship
- The practice of Midwifery: what makes A good midwife
- The language of Midwifery
- professional Midwifery Organisations ACM/ICM
- Registration requirements for practicing Midwifery in Australia
2. A Global Perspective of Midwifery
- primary healthcare and Midwifery
- social Determinants of health affecting maternity care
- The framework for quality Maternal and newborn care
- Midwifery The Universal pathway of health: The Importance of Midwifery care
- human rights in childbirth
3. Childbirth in Australia
- The Australian healthcare system and maternity care
- towards normal birth policy (currently under Review)
- The First 2000 days Framework
- why does normal physiological birth matter (including The human Biome)
- The role of The midwife as protector of normal physiological birth
- The birth space
- Continuity of Midwifery care as The gold Standard of care
4. Cultural and Personal beliefs around childbirth
- personal beliefs
- cultural beliefs and practices
- Fear and Risk around childbirth
- birthing outside The system


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Intra-session Exam 1 hour 20 Y Individual
Intra-session Exam 1 hour 30 Y Individual
Viva Voce 30 minutes 50 Y Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • De-Vitry Smith, S. & Bayes, S. (2018). Skills for midwifery practice (Aust & New Zealand ed.). Chatswood, N.S.W.: Elsevier.
  • Pairman, S., Tracy, S., Dahlen, H. & Dixon, L. (2019). Midwifery: preparation for practice (4th ed.). Chatswood, N.S.W: Elsevier.
  • Rankin, J. (2017). Physiology in childbearing: With anatomy and related biosciences (4th ed.). Edinburgh, UK: Elsevie

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)

Parramatta - Victoria Rd


Subject Contact Michelle Eveleigh Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window

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