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Inherent requirements

Nutrition

Inherent requirements for nutrition

Introduction

These inherent requirements apply to the following course: Master of Nutrition. 

Prospective and current students who are concerned about their capacities in relation to inherent requirements are strongly encouraged to contact the CDU Access and Inclusion team to discuss possible adjustments or alternative courses.

E: inclusion@cdu.edu.au

How to read the inherent requirements

These inherent requirements should be read in conjunction with other course information and related material such as the Nutrition Society of Australia code of ethics and Public Health Association priorities.

There are seven domains of inherent requirements for the Master of Nutrition. Some domains have several sub-domains.

Each domain has five levels: 

  1. Introduction
  2. Description
  3. Justification
  4. Adjustments
  5. Exemplars 

Inherent requirement domains and statements

Ethical behaviour

Acting in ways consistent with the recognised values of society and avoiding activities that do harm.
In the context of inherent requirements, students undertaking a course of study may be governed by practice standards and codes of ethics.

  1. Introduction
    Students need to understand and act in ways consistent with the recognised values of society and in line with public health, food and nutrition standards.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • safe and ethical behaviour towards colleagues, staff and work integrated learning stakeholders
    • understanding of ethical principles and application to research, public health, and nutrition practice. 
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Compliance with the recognised values of society facilitates safe, competent interactions and relationships for students and/or the people with whom they engage. This supports the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual wellbeing of all. Compliance with privacy legislation, and related policies and procedures, ensures that the privacy rights of individuals and groups are not placed at risk.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must not compromise codes of conduct or result in unethical behaviour.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Complying with academic and non-academic misconduct policies
    • Complying with information security procedures and other relevant legislative requirements. 
    • Demonstrating ability to reflect on ethical dilemmas and issues and taking responsibility for ensuring awareness of ethical behaviour. 
Behavioural stability

The maintenance of conduct that is acceptable and appropriate, according to the recognised norms of society over a given period.

  1. Introduction
    Behavioural stability is required to function and adapt effectively and sensitively in a demanding role.

  2. Description of inherent requirement 
    Student demonstrates behavioural stability to work constructively in a diverse and changing academic and practice environment.

  3. Justification of Inherent requirement 
    Behavioural stability is required to work individually and in teams in changing and unpredictable environments. Nutrition students will be exposed to academic, food service and public health nutrition settings and will be required to have behavioural stability to manage these events objectively and professionally.

  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must support stable, effective, and professional behaviour in both academic and practice settings.

  5. Exemplars:

    • Critically reflecting on practice, being receptive and responding appropriately to constructive feedback

    • Coping effectively with own emotions and behaviour when working with individuals and other stakeholders in service settings 

    • Work constructively in culturally and socially diverse groups while dealing with challenging practical and theoretical issues 

    • Demonstrating sensitivity and behaving ethically.

Communication

Students must be able to interpret information and communicate effectively in spoken and written English with language use and style appropriate to the audience.

Verbal communication: Conveying messages, ideas, or feelings through speech.

  1. Introduction
    Effective and efficient verbal communication, in English, is an essential requirement to provide safe practise.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • Sensitivity to individual and/or cultural differences
    • The ability to understand and respond to verbal communication accurately, appropriately and in a timely manner
    • The ability to communicate effectively in the context of the situation
    • The ability to give timely clear feedback and reporting
    • The capacity to use a range of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) to complete academic assessment requirements.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Communicating in a way that displays respect and empathy to others, develops trusting relationships. It is a requirement in Nutrition to elicit information, educate and advise others. Speed and interactivity of communication may be critical for individual safety or treatment. Timely, accurate and effective delivery of instructions is necessary in Nutrition.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments for impaired verbal communication must address effectiveness, timeliness, clarity, and accuracy issues to ensure safety.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Actively participating in and contributing to group assessment tasks, tutorial, laboratory and work integrated learning project discussions and activities
    • Establishing a rapport with individuals/groups during work integrated learning projects and responding appropriately to requests from individuals/groups, supervisors and other professionals and stakeholders
    • Recognising and responding appropriately to cues during classroom situations and work integrated learning projects
    • Comprehending spoken English delivered at conversational speed. 

Non-verbal communication: Communication other than speech that conveys meaning including gestures and facial expressions, body posture, stance, touch, eye movements, eye contact and distance from the person/s with whom you are communicating. Non-verbal cues can provide significant additional information to the person with whom you are communicating.

  1. Introduction
    Effective non-verbal communication is fundamental to Nutrition practice and needs to be respectful, clear, attentive, empathetic, honest, and non-judgmental.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • the capacity to recognise, interpret and respond appropriately to non-verbal and behavioural cues
    • consistent and appropriate awareness of own behaviours.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    The ability to observe and understand non-verbal cues assists with building rapport with people and gaining their trust and respect in academic and professional relationships and is required for safe and effective practice. This includes displaying consistent and appropriate facial expressions, eye contact, being mindful of space, time, boundaries and body movements and gestures to promote trust. Being sensitive to individual and/or cultural differences and displaying respect and empathy to others develops trusting relationships.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must enable the recognition, initiation of or appropriate response to effective non-verbal communication in a timely and appropriate manner.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Recognising and responding appropriately in the academic environment 
    • Responding professionally to requests from individuals, groups, supervisors, and all stakeholders in work integrated learning project settings
    • Recognising and responding appropriately to non-verbal cues in the placement environment. 

Written communication: Communication by written symbols including electronic means, print or handwriting.

  1. Introduction
    Effective written communication, in English, is a fundamental to accurately convey information and provide consistent and safe nutritional information.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • Capacity to construct coherent written communication appropriate to the circumstances
    • The capacity to use a range of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) to complete academic assessment requirements.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Construction of nutrition education resources and reports that are required to meet industry standards. Accurate written communication, including record-keeping and clinical notes is vital to provide consistent and safe care and service.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must meet necessary standards of clarity, accuracy, and accessibility to ensure effective recording and transmission of information in both academic and practice settings.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Write and present clear, concise and accurate reports, essays, and oral presentations
    • Create and adapt nutrition education resources
    • Comprehend written English in a variety of styles and formats common to academic and workplace settings.
Cognition

The mental action or process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through one's thoughts, experience, and senses.

Knowledge and cognitive skills: Acquired skills that reflect an individual's ability to think. Cognitive skills include verbal and spatial abilities, concentration, memory, perception, reasoning, planning and organisation, flexible thinking, and problem solving.

  1. Introduction
    Consistent and effective knowledge and cognitive skills must be demonstrated to provide safe and competent nutrition practice.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • Capacity to locate appropriate and relevant information
    • Ability to process information relevant to practice
    • Ability to integrate and implement knowledge in practice in a timely manner.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Safe and effective nutrition practice is based on comprehensive knowledge that is sourced, understood, and applied appropriately.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must ensure that a clear demonstration of knowledge and cognitive skills is not compromised or impeded.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Ability to conceptualise and use appropriate knowledge in response to academic assessment items
    • Applying knowledge of theory, research evidence, policy, and procedures in practice settings.

Literacy (language): This relates to the ability to acquire, understand, and apply information in a scholarly manner.

  1. Introduction
    Competent literacy skills, in English, are required to interpret information, write in accordance with appropriate academic conventions and make judgements relating to evidence-based nutritional information.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • The ability to acquire information and accurately convey appropriate, effective messages
    • The ability to read and comprehend a range of literature and information
    • The capacity to understand and implement academic conventions to construct written text in a scholarly manner.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    The ability to acquire information and to accurately convey messages is fundamental to ensure safe and effective assessment, treatment, and delivery of care. The ability to read, decode, interpret, and comprehend multiple sources of information is fundamental for safe and effective delivery of Nutrition services.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments to address literacy issues must demonstrate a capacity to effectively acquire, comprehend, apply, and communicate accurate information.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Demonstrating the ability to convey a spoken message clearly and accurately
    • Paraphrasing, summarising, and referencing in accordance with appropriate academic conventions in written assignments
    • Interpreting information in formats that include hand-written text, printed text, electronic text, graphs, and diagrams.

Numeracy: This relates to the ability to understand and work with numbers.

  1. Introduction
    Competent and accurate numeracy skills are essential for safe and effective care in nutrition and food science.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student interprets and correctly applies data, measurements, and numerical criteria.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Competent application of numeracy skills is essential to facilitate safe and effective nutrition services.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must demonstrate a capacity to interpret and apply concepts and processes appropriately in a timely, accurate and effective manner and not compromise the wellbeing of the population, community or individual.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Interpreting numerical data in specific formats
    • Performing accurate calculations involving fractions, decimals and percentages and interpret statistical data in complex tables and graphs
    • Analysing food composition and nutrient intake data
    • Analysing anthropometric and body composition data
    • Using and calculating primary and secondary sources of data such as, anthropometric measurements and nutrition requirements.
Sensory ability

The way a person recognises external stimuli - through sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch.

Visual

  1. Introduction
    Adequate visual acuity is required to provide safe and effective nutrition practise.
  2. Justification of inherent requirement
    Sufficient visual acuity is necessary to demonstrate the required range of skills, tasks, and assessments to maintain consistent, accurate and safe care to self and others 
    Visual observations, examination and assessment are fundamental to safe and effective nutrition practise.
  3. Adjustments
    Adjustments must address the need to perform the full range of tasks involved in the practice setting. Any strategies to address the effects of the vision impairment must be effective, consistent, and not compromise safety or treatment.
  4. Exemplars:
    • Applying food composition, food serving size and food preparation knowledge to review and plan menus
    • Conducting quality improvement projects within acute and community healthcare settings, food service systems and public health nutrition settings 
    • Recognising and responding appropriately to cues during stakeholder engagement activities.

Auditory

  1. Introduction
    Adequate auditory acuity is required to provide safe and effective nutrition care.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates sufficient aural function to undertake the required range of skills.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Sufficient auditory ability is necessary to monitor, assess and manage an individual’s health/ care needs consistently and accurately; and to practice within a busy food service environment.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must address the need to perform the full range of tasks involved in practice. Any strategies to address the effects of the hearing impairment must be effective, consistent, and not compromise treatment or safety.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Practicing verbal communication skills during tutorial discussions and work integrated learning projects
    • Participating in group discussions and multisector team meetings in work integrated learning projects.

Tactile

  1. Introduction
    Adequate tactile ability is required to perform competent and safe nutrition practice.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates sufficient tactile function to undertake the required range of skills and assessments.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Adequate tactile ability is necessary to conduct food and nutrition assessments.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must have the capacity to make effective assessments of physical characteristics and abnormalities within safe time frames.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Performing accurate preparation of food and nutrition assessments.
Strength and mobility

Gross motor skills: The use of large muscle groups that coordinate body movements for activities such as walking, lifting, pushing, pulling, and maintaining balance.

Fine motor skills: The ability to undertake precise coordinated movements of the hands for activities such as writing and manipulating small objects.

  1. Introduction
    Nutrition practice requires developed gross and fine motor skills to safely and effectively complete tasks during practical classes, field or work integrated learning projects and research.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates the ability to perform motor skills to function within scope of practice.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    The ability to use gross and fine motor skills is necessary in Nutrition to perform tasks consistently and safely to reduce the risk of harm to self and others. Gross motor skills are required in the program to complete assessment tasks. Students must be able to demonstrate ability to meet the Occupational Health & Safety requirements in work integrated learning project settings. Fine motor skills are required to manipulate and operate nutritional analysis and food-preparation equipment.  Fine motor skills include manipulation of measuring equipment, using hand-eye coordination to perform tasks, and performing physical assessments.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments should facilitate functional effectiveness, safety of self and others and a capacity to provide appropriate care.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Gross-motor skills: movement around equipment in confined spaces such as kitchens and laboratories and being able to mobilise safely in a variety of environments.
    • Fine motor skills: performing body composition assessment, anthropometric assessment, and food measurements.
Sustainable performance

The ability to undertake a task/s over a pre-determined length of time. This could include physical performance such as standing for a length of time, or cognitive (mental) performance such as concentrating for a particular length of time.

  1. Introduction
    Nutrition practice requires physical, mental, and emotional performance at a consistent sustained level over extended periods of time.
  2. Description of inherent requirement
    Student demonstrates:
    • Consistent and sustained level of physical energy to complete a specific task in a timely manner and over time
    • The mental and emotional skills to concentrate and focus on multiple tasks for an assigned period of time.
  3. Justification of inherent requirement
    Sufficient physical and mental endurance is an essential requirement needed to perform activities with a level of concentration that ensures a capacity to focus on the activity until it is completed appropriately. Activities may occur over extended periods of time.
  4. Adjustments
    Adjustments must ensure that performance is consistent and sustained over a given period.
  5. Exemplars:
    • Consistent concentration and participation in tutorials, lectures, and skill development activities throughout the day
    • Performing multiple tasks in an assigned period with a level of concentration that ensures capacity to complete tasks appropriately
    • Providing consistent concentration throughout classroom simulations and whilst on work integrated learning projects.

Glossary - key terms

Access/placement plan

An Access and/or Placement Plan documents the agreed reasonable adjustments that are to be implemented for an individual student.  Access/Placement plans are developed by the Access and Inclusion team.

The plans outline the reasonable adjustments and indicate the responsibilities of both the student and relevant University staff for implementation of the plan. Depending on circumstances relating to the student’s disability, the plans can be altered or amended to reflect changes in the student’s disability or condition.

Carer/assistant

Is defined by the University in line with the Disability Discrimination Act (1992) and refers to a carer or assistant, in relation to a person with a disability, who provides assistance or services to the person because of the disability.

Disability

Is defined by the University in line with the Disability Discrimination Act (1992) and includes students with:

  • Any physical, sensory, neurological, intellectual, learning disability, psychological or psychiatric condition, and includes physical disfigurement, the presence in the body of disease-causing organisms and total or partial loss of part of the body or a bodily function
  • A temporary, permanent, current, past or future disability, and chronic health conditions which may or may not commonly be considered disabilities.
Fitness to practice

Means a student’s demonstrated ability to meet the expected standards of conduct, compliance, knowledge, performance, and capacity required by the relevant profession and legislation governing the profession.

Reasonable adjustment

Refers to adjustments that can be made to allow a student with a disability to participate in education on the same basis as students without a disability. An adjustment is reasonable if it successfully balances the interests of all parties affected and does not compromise the academic standards or inherent requirements of a subject or course.

Universal design

Refers to the design of products and environments to be usable by all people to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or of specialised design. In education, this means developing course content, teaching materials and delivery methods to be accessible to and usable by students across the broadest diversity ranges.

(Attribution Western Sydney University)

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