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Assimilating nursing: knowledge and theory

Qualification dates
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This module is part of the final stage of the BSc (Honours) Nursing and is offered across all four fields of nursing practice – Adult, Children and Young People, Learning Disabilities and Mental Health. It assimilates nursing theory and practice, prior to Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) registration. The module is delivered using an enquiry-based learning approach. This is an interactive and engaging approach covering a range of interesting topics which focuses on increasing your depth of knowledge and understanding on topics such as, end-of-life care, public health, acute care, long term conditions and leadership and change management.

What you will study

You will study four blocks of learning covering a range of topics including:

Block 1: Global public health and long-term conditions

  • Global and local perspectives of public health, health policy and healthy communities, digital health and health literacy.
  • Human development across the lifecourse and related theories.
  • Biopsychosocial aetiology, pathophysiology, salutogenesis vs pathogenesis of caring for long term conditions (and co-morbidity).
  • Service user vulnerability and acknowledging the service user's voice and choice in care.

Block 2: Being an accountable professional and delivering ethical care

  • Legal issues in healthcare, for example, consent, competency and capacity.
  • Rights participation and advocacy, including the Mental Health Act and legal issues.
  • Delivering ethical care, including at the end of life.
  • Inclusion, equity and discrimination.
  • Transitioning from student to registrant, for example, reflection, emotional intelligence, resilience, professionalism, and revalidation.

Block 3: Acute and managing Long Term Conditions

  • Assessment and management of self-harm, suicide, acutely ill child/adult, learning disability, and complex needs.
  • Managing the deteriorating patient, acute care and home treatment.
  • Critical appraisal of the evidence.
  • Pharmacology and management of care, including substance misuse, and concordance.

Block 4: Leadership and management and change management

  • Autonomous decision making, empowerment and care co-ordination.
  • Critical thinking and problem-solving.
  • Teamwork and leadership, power and influence, and conflict resolution.
  • Service improvement and quality assurance measures (for example, change management).
  • Major project on an area of service improvement.

Professional recognition

For students pursuing the BSc (Honours) Nursing (R39), this module is one of a set that together lead to the professional qualification of Registered Nurse (Part 1: NMC).

Entry requirements

This module is not available for standalone study. To study this module, you should be registered on the BSc (Honours) Nursing, and have:

  • satisfied the entry requirements for the qualification
  • normally completed the following OU level 1 modules: Introducing health and social care (KYN102) and Introduction to healthcare practice (KYN104), and the OU level 2 modules Understanding nursing: knowledge and theory (KYN210), and Developing nursing practice (KYN211) or demonstrate equivalent.
  • met the NMC entry requirements; demonstrated good character and health status through self-declaration; enhanced criminal disclosure; occupational health screening; review of previous sickness and absence; two references, including one from your current employer.
If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.

What's included

Online learning materials and resources. You will have access to a module website, through which teaching and library resources are available that provide links to current information and relevant research-based materials relating to module content.

Computing requirements

You’ll need broadband internet access and a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of Windows (10 or 11) or macOS Ventura or higher.

Any additional software will be provided or is generally freely available.

To join in spoken conversations in tutorials, we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).

Our module websites comply with web standards, and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.

Our OU Study mobile app will operate on all current, supported versions of Android and iOS. It’s not available on Kindle.

It’s also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook. However, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you’ll also require a desktop or laptop, as described above.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

Online tuition will be via synchronous Adobe Connect meetings with bi-weekly 2.5hrs tutorials. Learning materials will be labelled as Core and Optional, but you'll be expected to study outside OU learning materials by seeking further information from the internet, as well as drawing on local trust and national policies to inform your tuition and practice.

Online tutorials will run in field-specific tutor groups. Students seeking individual support will be able to do so with their tutor.

Contact us if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.


The assessment details can be found in the facts box.

If you have a disability

The OU strives to make all aspects of study accessible to everyone and this Accessibility Statement outlines what studying KYN325 involves. You should use this information to inform your study preparations and any discussions with us about how we can meet your needs.

Future availability

Assimilating nursing: knowledge and theory starts three times a year – in February, June, and October.

This page describes the module that will start in June 2024.

We expect it to start for the last time in June 2029.

Course work includes:

3 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
1 Interactive computer-marked assignment (iCMA)
End-of-module assessment